19.07.2012 10:43

EMA “Rocking” The Largest Open-Air Music Festival in Slovakia

Field Report by Lucia Lopošová

The smell of summer, world class musicians, cinema, political discussions, activists, artists and EMA: all together in the same place, spreading relaxed vibes to festival-goers. The 16th edition of the summer festival “Bažant Pohoda made that possible as it brought together thousands of diverse young and not so young people from Slovakia as well as abroad to the city of Trenčín during the second week of July. No wonder EMA Slovakia gladly accepted the invitation to participate in this great event and present Erasmus Mundus programs to potential students.

The EMA hosting tent “Youth on the Move” sponsored by the European Commission was constantly busy and full of young people seeking mobility opportunities across Europe and abroad. EMA, together with Erasmus Student Network (ESN) Slovakia, European Voluntary Service (EVS), and EURES represented programs through discussions during the festival.

EMA Country Representative Lucia Lopošová and current student of European Master in Tourism Management Eliška Smaržíková shared their EM experiences and gave useful advice during two sessions. A debate was enriched by the presence of Katka Šmálová, the representative of Slovak Academic Agency for International Cooperation (SAAIC), responsible for Erasmus Mundus selection. Besides the in-house debates, EMA representatives spread the word about Erasmus Mundus by approaching young people who were roaming around and encouraged those with motivations and potential to apply.

Besides information corners spread around the colorful tent of the Youth on the Move initiative, different activities invited passers-by to hide from the warm sun. While they familiarized themselves with the variety of possibilities offered by the EU, they could also win some prizes answering questions about Europe or give the wheel of fortune a try. In the evening, the stage turned into an oasis of relaxation, offering massage to interested festival-goers (very much appreciated after nights spent in tents).

All in all, Pohoda Festival was a great opportunity in raising awareness on Erasmus Mundus among young people and to connect with other partners from various associations in Slovakia. A thank-you note goes to SAAIC and ESN Slovakia for inviting EMA members to the Youth on the Move program and for all the support they provided throughout the short but very fruitful collaboration.