It’s sad when locals die. And it’s awesome when they can avoid it! AEGEE-Darmstadt has been quite silent in the past couple of years. The German antenna not far from Frankfurt was once well known for its great Erasmus work, but then was in a crisis. A few months ago the antenna elected a new board and is now back with a lot of energy. Here is how they managed it.

AEGEE-Darmstadt organised some great Summer Universities in the past.

Golden Times: What happened to AEGEE-Darmstadt? In the past couple of years your antenna seemed invisible…
AEGEE-Darmstadt: Our old board members were busy with their studies or started working and leaving Darmstadt. At this time also, our members kept attending Agorae, NWMs and Summer Universities, even though we were “invisible”.

GT: So how did you manage to revive it?
AEGEE-Darmstadt: Our President Hamdi is very passionate about AEGEE and for him the time came to give something back to AEGEE. As an international student who is living abroad, he wants to help international people like him, besides he wants to create an international community in Darmstadt where people feel comfortable. This was his motivation to become President of AEGEE-Darmstadt. Last year, AEGEE-Frankfurt invited him to their SU as a helper. There, he and Freddy from AEGEE-Frankfurt met and made the plan to revive the antenna.

GT: Do you have advice for other antennae in danger what to do to overcome a crisis with a lack of members?
AEGEE-Darmstadt: The situation should be analyzed objectively in the first place. Afterward, with brainstorming and exchanging some ideas, the solution will appear itself. As long as you have an aim to access and the right motivated people with you, everything is possible with a well-structured plan.

GT: Who is in your board now?
AEGEE-Darmstadt: Hamdi Altin is our president, Frederik Kreutzer is our secretary and Yalcin Köklük became our treasurer. The election took place in December 2018 and our term will finish at the end of this year.

European Central Bank visit by 5 antennae from the Rhein-Main-Neckar region last autumn.

GT: Did someone continue from the previous board?
AEGEE-Darmstadt: Actually, our board has changed completely after some years except our president Hamdi. He was the cash auditor in the previous board.

GT: How many members does your antenna have?
AEGEE-Darmstadt: Officially we have 17 members. We have started a recruiting campaign to grow and become more active in the future.

GT: What are the biggest plans and events your new board is planning for this year?
AEGEE-Darmstadt: Well, on the local level we are planning a lot of activities and events for the international people. We want to create an Internet page with a mentorship system in which every international student in Darmstadt gets a mentor for the first few months. It will be a pool where all the mentors and mentees register on the system and get a match. We are already in contact with universities and other international student organizations to reach an as high as possible amount of mentors. This is our biggest plan for this year. We also want to organize some workshops for students in Darmstadt and a Local Training Course for our AEGEE members. But of course, our biggest goal is to make our antenna bigger and become more active.

GT: Where can we see your members? At some Network Meetings or the Agora?
AEGEE-Darmstadt: Our newest member is going to Spring Agora București 2019. Freddy will be also there – he just returned from the NWM in Heidelberg.

Freddy Kreutzer at NWM Heidelberg

GT: How can people in the network contact your antenna or find out more?
AEGEE-Darmstadt: Unfortunately, our website is under construction and will be updated soon. Nowadays, we are active on Facebook and Instagram – it’s the easiest way to contact us. People can also contact us per e-mail (info.aegeedarmstadt@gmail.com) or postal address – to send us some postcards for example.

GT: Anything you would like to add? Maybe a message to the network?
AEGEE-Darmstadt: We are already in contact for our campaign with our lovely Netcommie and Subcommie and also some experienced AEGEE friends to exchange some ideas and get advice. We are happy about any support and ideas from experienced people to make AEGEE-Darmstadt bigger. Let’s say – AEGEE-Darmstadt is back on track!

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