Last week, 8-9 April, NOM (Nordic Chairman's Meeting) held a digital meeting in which the SFS Committee on International Affairs, Komit, participated. NOM is a collaboration between the Nordic and Baltic student organizations where we meet and discuss common issues. Most participants are, like SFS, members of the European Students' Union (ESU). We, Linn Svärd and Patrik Hermansson, participated from Komit.
The hosting of the NOM meetings rotates between the organizations and this time it was EÜL, the Estonian equivalent of SFS. The first day usually focuses on guest lectures and seminars according to a certain theme. Each meeting has a theme and this time focus on the very important issues: environment and social responsibility.
Among other things, we received a guest lecture from the former Finnish parliamentarian Oras Tynkkynen, who talked about why Nordic and Baltic countries should take greater responsibility for, for example, the climate when we represent such a small part of the world's population. An important perspective was that if all countries and regions corresponding to a small percentage thought so, a very large majority would not think at all about the environment and climate.
We also had a visit from Kadris Kalle from the Let's Do It Foundation who talked about the (potential) transition to circular economy. Which is about how we take care of and reuse the resources we have. In a small poll that was done among the participants, we also had to comment on how hopeful we are for the future and unfortunately the answers were not optimistic. Here it becomes even more important to show the role of higher education for a sustainable future, but also the academy's responsibility for society's possible adjustment to more climate-neutral alternatives.
In the evening, a digital intercultural night was held. We usually meet physically around Europe, but due to the corona pandemic, NOM has also shifted to being implemented digitally. Intercultural night is traditionally used to get to know each other's cultures by the participants bringing food, drink or something characteristic from their country and sharing. It is a very good opportunity to get to know each other outside the meeting rooms and many nice friendships are formed here. This time we filled the time with the games Pictionary and Cards Against Humanity online! We also took the opportunity to celebrate one of the participants who recently turned one year old with a surprise gift.
The second day was a bit more political discussion among NOM's members, with a special focus on the upcoming Board Meeting (BM) where all members will decide on ESU's views on future European student policy and elect the next board and presidium. Some examples of what was discussed are the proposals for opinion documents concerning internationalization at home, microcredentials and student rights. Here we get from SFS side a great opportunity to see if we can get a hearing among our the other member organizations for the opinions that the member unions have decided on at SFSFUM. In addition, we also hear about the other student organizations' perspectives on various issues that affect students.
NOM is only part of the work that Komit does, and it can be quite intense the two days, but it is also very rewarding for both SFS and the individual Komit member. The experiences of Swedish and European students are similar, which means that we get a great exchange of international cooperation.
Komit, Linn & Patrik
Does NOM and Komit sound interesting? Komit is currently looking for new members. Last day to apply is May 3, read more about the assignment and apply here.