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EURENSSA 2015, The Blind Man and the Elephant and other agricultural stories

EURENSSA team 2015

EURENSSA stands for European Environmental Sciences Students Association an association that has its roots from a Latvian environmental science student who organized first summer camp in their country. Word spread round about it and since then, summer camps are being held in different countries organized by different students each year with the exception of 2014.

 This year’s traditional summer camp, organized by students for students, was held in Saxon Switzerland of Dresden Germany. More than twenty students from all over the world and from different level of studies were gathered on open fields of Permahof, Hohenstein. Works and new ideas were presented, lectures were given, workshops were held and hearts were bounded to each other. At the centre of it, summer camp is also a journey to find and remember nature. The gathering lasts seven to ten days with accommodation being strictly TENT ONLY. However, a huge blanket of stars with Milky Way was also an option during this year’s first week of August in Hohnstein, Germany.

The main topic of the gathering was the ‘Blind Man and the Elephant; a parallel on Interdisciplinary Environmental Research’ and the relevant sub-topics ; Environmental Ethics, Ecology vs Economy and Environmental Engineering, Analytics and Modeling. A wide variety of issues from Eco-Efficiency Analysis to Environmental Ethics were discussed as well as from Wolfs and Farmers of Norway  to Free Fair Tariff at Local Town in Germany. As a country representative of YPARD, i had an opportunity to promote YPARD at the end of my presentation and i was happy to receive questions about it afterwards.   

The gathering was not only about science, environment, and studies. Hiking, local sightseeing area, guided national park tour and a visit to UFZ Research Centre in Leipzig were also part of the EURENSSA. Games were played, stick breads baked on bonfire, songs sang and drinks were shared together with laughs. Vegan and vegetarian friendly meals were prepared by organizing team and volunteering participants as well as home-made jams, vegetable spread and freshly harvested fruits. Abundant amount of brown German bread was also available thanks to donations from local bakeries. One of the evenings was dedicated for the international dinner in which foods from South Africa to Sweden were eaten all together.

Above all meeting was quite an experience due to coverage of multiple aspects; learning, teaching, sharing and having lots of fun with new friends. As such, participation is highly recommended for everyone who actually reads this blog entry.