Friday, January 9:

It’s Friday, a difficult week is over and it’s now time to pack my things and leave Italy for the next ESN adventure.

Considering the fact that ESN has been monopolizing my weekends in the past two years, I should be used to this kind of feeling, but this time is different, I feel like I’m part of a bigger project; being involved in the promotion of Expo in other countries makes me feel like a newbie at his first ESN event.

But it’s late, too late to think about it, there is a flight to catch and a mission that is waiting for me.

At the airport there are Alessandro, the project coordinator, he’s already a professional but the truth is that he can’t give up this network, and Cecilia, a nice girl from Bergamo who is going to co-present with me the Expo 4Students Project.

After a few initial pictures at the airport, (we can’t miss the opportunity to take some ‘selfies’), we hop on a plane and fly to our first destination: Germany!

The final destination is Dresden, but for logistic reason we had to fly to Berlin.

Everyone knows how the nightlife in Berlin is, so we opted for a night out in the city. We decided to go to an underground club in the former soviet part of the city. Obviously, the music was techno and the people inside were all ‘alternatives’. I was impressed by how huge the club was and the next day we figured out that it was an abandoned power plant, well, cool!!

Saturday, January 10:

After a bus ride of 2 hours (we woke up at 6:30!) we arrived at Dresden in the morning and before lunch we were already at the plenary of the National Platform of ESN Germany.

At the plenary we met Alessandro from Macerata, an Italian Esner who was doing his Erasmus in Munich and after few months was already completely integrated in ESN Germany. I don’t think that for an esner is difficult to be comfortable in another ESN country; we are all friendly and open-minded people, and this helps a lot when you need to make new friendships.

The hospitality of ESN Germany was great: we met all the national board members and a lot of Germans able to speak in Italian approached us to tell us how in love they were with our country. Hearing that they had a great time in Italy makes me always happy and it’s one of the main reasons I give so much of my time and my energy to Erasmus Student Network.

But it’s time to focus on the presentation: we (me, Alessandro and Cecilia) decided to hold the presentation in English because we knew that most Germans are very good at English; Alessandro introduced the project and the Ambassadors, while me and Cecilia went into the details, explaining what Expo is and what kind of opportunities they were given. I had to talk about the development of the project and how the listeners could be involved with EXPO, I decided to do it in an interactive way, I wanted them to stay focused on the main points of my presentation so I explained that almost everyone of them could be part of Expo and they could gain new soft skills, meet new people and discover new cultures.

After that, the feedback we received was positive, many participants asked us questions especially in private, and we really hope they will apply for a spot as volunteers.

The rest of the stay was really pleasant. We had a pub crawl on Saturday night and a city tour in the center. I can definitely say that ESN Germany let us feeling like a part of the family.

It was a wonderful weekend, I met a lot of new people and visited a new city, but now, the only thing I’m thinking of is……….. I can’t wait for the next mission!

- Matteo Gentilini #Students4Expo Ambassador -