Can you tell us a little bit about yourself – who are you, where do you come from and what are your hobbies?
Hello everyone! I’m Margarita Semchenko, called just Rita by everyone except angry teachers at school, 23, Russian and a member of the lovely organisation we all know and love. I’m a member of AEGEE-Voronezh and for the last 3,5 years I’m deeply sucked in AEGEE world that without a doubt changed my life. Living in the close vicinity of Moscow (just some 500km, ha) I got to enjoy travelling since childhood and making it now by myself but at the same time always doing something useful is my biggest drug. So you most likely to see me at some training event than laying on a beach for 2 weeks straight. I’m a good mix of social and introvert person, love photography and retro music. Everything else you can find out by simply saying hi and starting a conversation.
How/why did you discover AEGEE?
My story of how I met AEGEE started from a simple search with the key words like summer, students, travel, cheap(how original, isn’t it?). Luckily one person in some blog wrote about volunteering and such organisation as AEGEE, then I just found the closest local, applied for Summer University in 2016 and the rest is history:)
Can you sketch your AEGEE-career for us? What was your ultimate highlight within your time in AEGEE?
I come from quite a small local that is actually 100km away from where I live so it took me awhile to actually join and participate on an active level. So far I’ve only been in the board for two years, a subcommissioner for Polina Khapaeva during the last year and now somehow I’m the Speaker of Network Commission. I was very shocked when I saw the results at the Agora Bucuresti and even more when the team trusted in me to become the Speaker despite having no prior experience. And these things, for sure, are my highlights so far. I’m very happy but also see even clearer why this association means so much to me: it’s really a playground when you need to just take the opportunity and shape it the way you want, develop in the sphere your interests are in and become the better version of yourself while also changing the life of others.
Are there any specific plans or goals (within AEGEE) you strive towards?
I don’t think that I have a specific plan regarding anything now, to be honest. Maybe it’s because my life is too chaotic lately(whose isn’t:D) but I know for sure one thing: being now a Netcom I would really want to do the best for the network and leave great changes for the Commission itself as well as for locals. No matter how cheesy it sounds, I love the team I’m a part of now and very excited to work with them until Yerevan and this is the only sure thing for now I believe. Besides, I think we will be quite reformists(wait for Salerno he-he).
Do you have a message for the members of AEGEE-Leiden?
Use your time in this association and make the most of it for yourself and others around the whole network. Being a part of one of the biggest locals you definitely can do it, enjoying both local and European events. Good luck with everything and be sure that AEGEE can make your life so much cooler!