Today was the big day – the Summer University organisers received the pre-selection results. That means: reading motivation letters and finding the perfect mix of participants for the perfect summer. Altogether 4156 AEGEE members applied for a Summer University. “We are very happy with the numbers”, SUCT manager Hans-Peter Bretz told the Golden Times.

The ten most popular SUs in 2013


In the past couple of years the magical number of 4000 applicants was missed – in 2011 it was 3987, last year 3837 – which was a pity, since the Summer Universities are necessary for the survival of many locals. This year, the negative trend was reversed. “We are very happy with the numbers”, stresses Hans-Peter Bretz. “With the PR material arriving later than usual, there were concerns that the locals cannot advertise the SUs and find new members, but it seems that they were still quite successful.”

Budapest is traditional on the top. In the past they often even had more than 300 applicants

Now, the ball is in the field of the SU organisers. „We published the pre-selection results today. Now the organizers have ten days to select their participants”, explains Hans-Peter. “When the selection is finished, those applicants who canceled their application or who were rejected can apply for an Open Call.”

Some antennae obviously couldn’t wait – altogether 42 participants have been accepted already today, after just a few hours. Others need more time to read the motivation letters – if they can read them. “Dear anonymous Spanish applicant, seriously, what were you thinking when you wrote the whole application in Spanish?”, asked Zoi-Vasiliki Karapati from AEGEE-Athina on Facebook after reading some letters.

SU-sendingcountries2013Spain was the country with most applicants, by the way. Altogether 1008 applications were sent from the sunny Southern country. That was more than the runner-up countries, Italy and Hungary had combined. With 252 applications AEGEE-Budapest had more applying members than any other antenna. And where do most people want to go? As usual to the South, with one exception: most popular SU was the “Scandinavian Dream” Travelling Summer University by AEGEE-Helsinki and AEGEE-Kobenhavn. 245 people don’t want to miss it.

What if

In the last application days most people applied.

However, for a long time during the application period, the number of applicants looked really low. Only in the last week before the deadline the applications gained momentum, with the last official day, Sunday, 28th of April, reaching 971 applications (see graphics). Also for the SUCT this last-minute rally meant stress. Hans-Peter: “We knew that it would be a lot of work, but in the end it was quite manageable. On the other hand I only saw the emails sent to the regular SUCT account, our IT Responsible Costas also had to work off a large amount of e-mails.”

More than 61 percent only chose 1 instead of 2 or three SUs. This is a problem for many less popular SUs.

Nevertheless, due to technical problems, the application period was prolonged by one day. Hans-Peter knows the reason: “During Sunday afternoon we got many emails by people who could still not use their newly created account. Usually, the accounts can be used after a few hours because they have to be copied from the intranet to the SU website. Late in the afternoon, Costas found out that the new accounts hadn’t been copied all day.” Fortunately, this was fixed by AEGEE IT guru Wim van Ravesteijn in the evening. However, the SUCT decided to extend the application period for two hours, so that everyone could finish their letters and motivations. Due to additional technical problems the period was extended until Monday night – which resulted in an additional 149 applications.

Near 60 percent of all applicants are female. Since most organisers want a gender-balanced group, this is a disadvantage for female applicants