The Autumn Agora 2021 was an Agora full of surprises. Even though this Agora took place online – and not in Moscow as originally planned – it was certainly one that kept us keen and awake. In this Gronoloog article, you’ll read about the experiences of the delegates from AEGEE-Groningen – Ann, Annemijn and Lars. They will address the most important happenings of the Autumn Agora 2021.
As with any Agora, candidatures for various European bodies were presented. First and foremost, there was an election for a member of the Comité Directeur, the board of AEGEE-Europe. Teddy van Amelsvoort applied as President, a function she already held as Interim before this Agora. The delegates and members of AEGEE-Groningen had positive experiences with her so far, finding her to be dedicated and capable. This granted her our full support with seven votes in favour. The Agora seemed to agree with us as she was voted in, making her the new official President of the Comité Directeur.
Another notable election came even closer to home. Our very own Arjan Tilstra applied as a member of the Audit Commission. With his experience as Treasurer of the XXXIII-Board of AEGEE-Groningen and his Audit experience on both the local and European level, Arjan took the next step and applied as official Audit Commissioner to the Agora. Along with Lisanne from AEGEE-Tilburg, he received our seven votes in favour and was indeed elected by the Agora.
Thirdly, it was also time to vote on three new Netcommissioners. The Netcommissioners are the intermediates between the local boards and the Comité Directeur. Each board has assigned one, who helps them out with any question that pops up. Something we didn’t know during the Agora, was that one of the newly elected Netcommissioners would become our own! We are very happy that Ilse was elected because she is a big help to us nowadays!
The last election that we would like to highlight is the one for (vice-)chairperson of the upcoming two Agorae. Being in the Chair Team does not only mean that you preside over the two Agorae, but that you also take important decisions during the preparations. Niek and Franjo were the two candidates that presented themselves for becoming the Chairperson. As Niek earned just one vote more, he was elected as Chairperson having Franjo as his vice-chairperson sidekick. Together, they’ll do a good job at the upcoming Agorae!
During an Agora, proposals are submitted and voted upon discussing various topics. One proposal of note regarded a reform of the Liason Office. Within AEGEE-Europe, Liason Officers aid the Comité Directeur in an external representation. In its previous form, they were ratified by the Agora in October and could serve one term in their function. This caused a lack of flexibility and scheduling issues with several external partners. Therefore, a proposal was submitted putting more duties on the Comité Directeur and less on the Agora. After clarification on the Agora itself on how they would ensure reports to the members and the Liason Office’s visibility. AEGEE-Groningen and the rest of the Agora alike voted in favour and accepted this proposal.
An additional proposal to highlight regards the publishing of reimbursement exceptions. Rules are in place for reimbursements granted by the Comité Directeur. When exceptions are made to still reimburse entities without completely complying to these rules, they need to be reported to the Agora. The proposal suggested deleting this requirement of reporting, arguing that large decisions need to be reported anyway and other mechanisms are in place. However, AEGEE-Groningen’s stance was that his transparency was still necessary and voted against it. Despite this, the proposal was accepted by the Agora.
So far we described the most important elections and proposals. Lastly, during the Agora, a Vote of Confidence was held on one of the members of the CD which was turned into a Vote of Confidence in the CD as a whole. The delegates of AEGEE-Groningen decided to vote ‘in confidence’. In the end, the majority of the Agora expressed their confidence in the CD.