insiteronline

S-Cubed in a Tunisian mission

Posted on 0

The Science Students’ Society (S-Cubed), in collaboration with Agenzija Zghazagh, has helped send two Maltese science undergraduates to an International Science Camp in Bizerte, Tunisia. The camp is being organised by the Tunisian Ministry for Youth, Sports, Women and Family.

 The two students, Maria Attard and Ryan Sultana, will be participating in workshops and field-visits along with other students from around the world. During these workshops, they will be discussing environmental and health issues.
They are being led as a delegation by Agenzija Zghazagh’s Andrew Micallef.
S-Cubed’s Secretary General, Thomas Bajada said that “not enough international opportunities are available to Maltese science undergraduates.” S-Cubed said that their role in sending the two students up to the Tunisian camp is evidence of their determination to increase international opportunities for science students.

The undergraduates speak out

Maria Attard:  ” I know it will be an unforgettable experience; so far the atmosphere is lovely and the people are like one community. I feel as though I belong here.”

Ryan Sultana“Tunisians, Algerians and Saudis were all very welcoming, continuously joking and dancing to the sound of a Darbouka ( a type of drum). All my previous unfounded ideas of these people were quickly blown away.”

 

Posted in Events

Insite to participate in NGO fair

Posted on 0

Insite will be joining around 50 other non-profit voluntary organisations in the ‘Youth Meet Youth’ fair, an event organised by Agenzija Zghazagh that will be held this Saturday the 19th of July in the square near the National Aquarium in Qawra. The event will start at 6:30pm.

Insite has already collaborated with Agenzija Zghazagh in the past, and would like to continue maintaining a successful relationship with the agency by being part of this fair.

The newly appointed Insite executive will be acting as representatives during the fair, although other members are also encouraged to volunteer or attend.

Representatives will be attending two different workshops about youth information and EU funds, as well as establishing contacts with other exhibiting organisations.

Last May’s issue of the Insiter will be distributed from Insite’s stand at the fair.

Posted in Events

Opportunity to take part in an EU simulation

Posted on 0

BETA (Bringing Europeans Together Association) España, with the help of the Provincial Council of Granada, is organizing its third edition of the ‘Model European Union’ to be held in Granada this coming October and they are currently recruiting participants from universities around the world, including the University of Malta.

The ‘Model European Union’ shows European students how decisions and legislations are made and carried out in the EU headquarters through a simulation-based event. While most European politics simulations are only based on one of the main institutions of the EU, the ‘Model European Union’ simulation project will primarily focus on interactions between the three main institutions, namely the Council of the European Union, the European Parliament and the European Commission.

The organisers will play the role of the European Commission, the executive body of the European Union. Students have the chance to apply as a minister of the council, a member of the European Parliament (MEP) or a journalist. The latter will be assigned to the role of editor, photographer, videographer, graphic designer, or social network professional. Over a period of five days, participants will discuss and amend proposals or, in the case of journalists, report on the goings-on.

Although the conference will be held in Spain, its official language will be English.

Applications are open until the 20th of July. For more information, visit www.meu-granada.org.es or send an email to info@meu-granada.org.es or to spain.beta@gmail.com

Posted in Events

MEP candidates stress the need for more widespread education on the EU

Posted on 0

 

On Monday 17th March, the European Documentation Centre in collaboration with the European Parliament Office, organised a debate in which MEP candidates who are also European Studies graduates went head to head to discuss Europe and the European Union’s most hotly debated topics at the moment.

The candidates present were Kevin Cutajar, Miriam Dalli and Cyrus Engerer. Dr. Peter Agius, the head of the European Parliament office in Malta and Arnold Cassola an Alternattiva Demokratika candidate were also present in the audience to give his input.

Malta’s sparse representation in committees in the EU, owing to its minute size, was the first topic to be put up for debate. All candidates stressed that although it is no mean feat for Malta to have full representation in such committees, it does not mean that Malta is inferior. Moreover, all candidates expressed which committees they would like to be a part of since all have varying interests namely employment, human rights and the internal market. Lobbying was also given its due importance. Above all, the concept of European identity is key.

The increase in the number of Euro sceptics MEPs was the next topic of discussion. Once again, all candidates seemed to be in agreement that this development should not be ignored. Also, all  were of the opinion that this shows the lack of trust that many citizens have in the EU. Dalli said that although this might be healthy, since Parliament will have different points of views and ideas during discussion, the issue will arise if particular groups will constantly block the initiatives being debated. Cutajar and Engerer stressed that the rise of Eurosceptism reflected in Parliament clearly shows that citizens rely mainly on what other people as well as the media say and they base their perceptions on the latter.

All candidates acknowledged and appealed that more education and information sessions should be made available to the public to enhance the public’s interest and keep the European flame alive. A witty member of the audience pointed out that probably the main reason for the public’s passiveness is due to the exaggerated salary given to such MEPs and even suggested that such salary should be cut down. All candidates stressed that cutting down salary is not the sole driving force for their work but it is the decisions taken in the European Parliament which really have the strongest impact.

The final two topics were Malta’s role in the EU and what the candidates have to offer should they be elected and the new Commission president to replace Barrosso. Engerer said that although the agenda is made by the European institutions, he will do his best to stand up for what he believes is best for Malta and the citizens. Dalli also expressed her desire to push forward the European concept on a macro level and on a micro level, encourage what is best needed for the citizens of the member states particularly Malta. Cutajar continued to say that he will contribute to the EU project and help to tackle issues which he believes are most important both for Europe as well as Malta.

Regarding the new Commission president, all candidates defended the choice made by their respective political groups that is Jean Claude Juncker for the European People’s Party and Martin Schulz for S&D.

Posted in Events, News

Make Your Choice through the Ballot Box: LYV Malta launch non-partisan Campaign

Posted on 0

As the European Parliament election campaign gears up, we get used to the same few faces cropping up on all social media platforms, as the main issues are eventually polarized by the dominance of the two major political parties. Thus it becomes ever so easy for the neutral or floating voter to become disenchanted with the election and perhaps dismiss its importance.

One particular campaign which has just been launched plans on changing this. Last Saturday 8th March a good number of youths gathered at Dar l-Ewropa, Valletta, for the launch of The League of Young Voters Malta (LYV Malta) campaign. Youths and MEP candidates had the chance to mingle, take photos and the occasional selfie, and were addressed by Andrew Micallef, National Ambassador of LYV Malta, Dr. Peter Agius, Head of the European Parliament Office in Malta, Kunsill Nazzjonali taż- Żgħażagħ (KNZ) President Isabelle Camilleri, Miriam Teuma, CEO of Aġenzija Żgħażagħ and Hon. Dr. Stefan Buontempo, Parliamentary Secretary for Research, Innovation, Youth and Sport.

The League of Young Voters initiative is a pan-European one. Its aim is to reach out to young people who want to send out a message without being affiliated with a particular political party. LYV Malta hopes to be a campaign with a difference: by youths, for youths, putting into the spotlight issues that directly interest and affect young people. A good number of ambassadors representing various youth organisation are also on board to promote this campaign.

LYV Malta is collaborating with Aġenzija Żgħażagħ, European Parliament Office in Malta, and Kunsill Nazzjonali taż- Żgħażagħ. More information can be found on: www.facebook.com/lyv.malta or www.youngvoters.eu/mt

 

Posted in Events, News

Students give GĦSL feedback about proposed changes to course structure

Posted on 1

On the morning of Wednesday 18th December, GĦSL represented by President Clive Gerada alongside 1st and 2nd year class representatives Francesca Zarb and Luisa Cassar Pullicino respectively, as well as faculty board representatives Paul Caruana Turner, Patrick Gatt and Robert Dingli, organised a consultation meeting with law students to discuss the current issue of a proposition to remove the Doctorate of Laws (LLD) title and replace it with Master of Laws (LLM), so that the course is in accordance with the Bologna process requirements to which Malta is signatory. Students present had the opportunity to ask questions to the panel, which was chaired by Dirk Urpani, and express their own opinions on the issue, which will be made known during a future meeting to be held by the said organization with the Parliamentary Secretary for Justice Dr. Owen Bonnici.

During the meeting, students again voiced their concerns regarding possible discrimination at the workplace between lawyers with a Doctorate and a Masters degree, as well as the possibility of disadvantageous public perception. While acknowledging the validity of such a worry, the panel stated that a change in title would not affect employment since firms and other legal entities will be fully aware of the changes by the time they come into place, if they pass through Parliament.

A particular issue raised by the students was the part of the proposal which replaces the end of course thesis with a dissertation during fourth year and a log book system in fifth year, whereby students formally report their court visits and other work experience sessions to University. According to the panel, again in consensus, a shorter dissertation instead of a longer thesis would not jeopardise students in prospective employment, since after all the content within the research is far more relevant than the length. In other parts of the discussion, the panel further asserted that the legal requirements for the law course will not change, and that credits have been placed strategically and efficiently in the situation of a 3-year-long Doctorate being reduced to a single year of Masters.

Earlier this month, the Dean of the Faculty of Laws Dr. Kevin Aquilina addressed law students with the proposal in question. In brief, during this initial session, Dr. Aquilina stated that students would not be jeopardised by the change, but the majority of the student body has remained uneasy as to whether or not the presented changes would truly benefit the affected students. Hence, GĦSL felt the need to set up Wednesday’s discussion in order to affirm a displeased consensus among law students, and to use this consensus against the possible implementation of the mentioned proposal.

Seemingly the students believe that, if such change is necessary and the proposal is accepted by the House of Representatives, the Doctorate title is removed for prospective students who are informed of the change before entering the course, and thus is not applied to those already undergoing their legal studies. In this way, the requirements of the Bologna process would be satisfied, but at the same time the process would not be unfair for current students who entered the course with the intention of attaining a Doctorate. By the end of the consultation, the panel in fact confirmed that it will take this complaint on board and vocally present it to Dr. Bonnici in the coming weeks.

Posted in Events, News