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CIVIS Student Council gathers in Lausanne to advance student-led projects

27 May 2024
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Student representatives from the CIVIS Global Student Council were warmly welcomed by the University of Lausanne, where their annual in person meeting took place, from 29-30 April, 2024. All CIVIS member universities were represented by 22 students who gathered to work on their action plan for the next academic year and continue discussions on student-led projects initiated in Glasgow.

© UNIL 2024

Focus on Student-led projects

The two-day meeting focused on developing CIVIS student-led projects, defined as extracurricular activities and initiatives initiated, led, managed, and implemented by students from all CIVIS universities and their partners. The mission of these initiatives is to foster cooperation among students, academics, and local stakeholders with a multidisciplinary approach aimed at developing innovative and inclusive high-impact solutions. More specifically, the activities offered through these initiatives include:

  • Civic engagement: community service projects, public forums, and debates
  • Student academic events: conferences, research projects, …
  • Cultural events: artistic exchanges, film screenings, exhibitions, ...

Everything took place in an atmosphere of sharing and exchange. Thanks to this meeting in Lausanne, the Student Council was able to make progress on a number of projects and initiate discussions that the Student Council will be looking to develop further and put into practice., said Léa Fontana, a student council member from the University of Lausanne.

Supporting projects by CIVIS students

© UNIL 2024

The University of Lausanne showcased its support processes for student projects. Nina Suckow, co-pilot of Volteface Students, presented the collaboration with external partners and the various aspects to consider when developing a project with local stakeholders. Volteface aims to accelerate social and ecological transition by offering master's students from all faculties the opportunity to engage in action research in sustainability.

The HUB for Entrepreneurship and Innovation presented its activities and expertise in supporting student projects, including the Roomieswap project. Coordinated by students from the University of Lausanne, the Roomieswap project aims to offer a travel alternative for students who wish to travel on a budget by making use of the empty apartments of students who are away on exchange or have returned to their families during university holidays.

This project generated significant interest among CIVIS representatives, who wish to collaborate n the platform's development and promotion at a European scale. Roomieswap will be one of the first pilot projects of the CIVIS "student-led projects" initiative.

The meeting with the UNIL Entrepreneurship HUB added real value to this experience. In this regard, I am convinced that organizing the meeting in Lausanne was a success, said Amyelle Nopponey, a UNIL member of the Student Council.

Engaging with local students

The meeting also allowed CIVIS students to get in touch with their local peers. The meeting closed with an aperitif enabling the local students and student council members to share their ideas and experiences. That was a great moment for the students to discuss and exchange opinions about their experiences within CIVIS, as well as the numerous opportunities that CIVIS offers to it's student community.