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The application for ISWI 2015 is finally opened!

ISWI 2015Dear future ISWI participants, we have great news for you. Since 12th December you can apply for participating in ISWI 2015. We are very sorry for the delay. Therefore, we extended the deadline for submitting the application to January, 10th 2015 (11:59 pm Central European Time).

Furthermore, you can have a look on our new ISWI 2015 website. There, you can find out more about the conference programme.

Visit 2015.iswi.org!

We wish you good luck and a successful application!

Best regards,
your ISWI 2015 Organisation Committee

The Newsletters of the Documentation Group are online

Here you can download the 1st edition

and here the 2nd edition

Opening Ceremony: Welcome to Ilmenau and Enjoy ISWI 2013!

Cool weather doesn’t discourage ISWI participants from attending the opening ceremony of ISWI 2013. It was held in the Festival Hall of Ilmenau on Sunday evening. The events were attended by every party involved in ISWI 2013: the organization team, the supporters, the groupleaders, the participants, as well as the distinguished guests. The event began with a fascinating performance by “Crepes Sucette”, a band which consists of three talented young men performing beautiful music with violin, guitar and percussion. The event continued with the welcoming speech by the President of TU Ilmenau, Prof. Dr. Scharff, and followed by Ms. Petra Enders as the district administrator of Ilmenau and Ms. Petra Heβ as the Commissioner of Foreigners of Thuringia. Some stage shows by the Ilmenauer Breakdancers and a unicycle show by Paul Wegfraβ also thrilled the audience.

Unfortunately, the two patrons of ISWI 2013, José Antonion Abreu and Dr. Vandana Shiva were not able to attend the opening ceremony. However, participants had a chance to watch a video on how Mr. Abreu initiated and developed El Sistema, a program that provides a classical music education to underprivileged children and juveniles in Venezuela. It gave the participants an idea that meaningful changes can be achieved through compassion, enthusiasm and hard work. David Ascanio, a founding member of El Sistema, represented Maestro Abreu in the opening ceremony; he delivered a good message to all ISWI participants and closed his statement with an amazing piano performance, which received standing ovations from the audience.

At the end of the ceremony, the organization representatives of ISWI 2013 expressed gratitude to all parties involved in ISWI 2013, and finally officially opened the International Student Week in Ilmenau 2013. (IRH)

Lecture: Opportunities and Risks of a Virtual Life

"I tried to be normal, but then I stopped being someone else and went on to be me instead" - Stephan Urbach

ISWI 2013 was kicked off with an energetic lecture by the blue haired, “net activist”, politician, and sometimes pony - Stephen Urbach, who is consultant for Knowledge and Information management for the Pirate party in the Berlin Senate. The lecture was titled “Opportunities and Risks of a Virtual Life”.

As a person who has multiple virtual identities he addressed topics such as defining your avatars, on-line and off-line self, and how to make the internet a safer space for minorities.

Urbach advised that if it is not safe to represent yourself online, encouraging to detach the avatar from your name, sex, location as much as possible to avoid being targeted by the state, and others who might not agree with your point of view.

As an active supporter of freedom of speech, he also encouraged the participants to think about how each one of us can actually make a difference by raising our opinion against injustice, hate and discrimination.

He also had much to say about the presence of racists and cyber-bullies on the Internet.  He advocated for no tolerance for these movements and stated that the privileged should keep the Internet safe for everyone. 

Speaking from his own experience he added, “Your online self is often who you want to be and possibly overtime will become your offline-self”. (FSTB, AV)

Dance of the cultures

ISWI International BrunchDespite the rain the ISWI International Brunch became a festival of cultures.

Many participants presented their traditional food, clothes and dances. Especially the music to the “Gangnam Style” made the students and Ilmenau citizens dance and sing.

The variety of traditional food stoked the people and created a joyful atmosphere all over the Wetzlarer Platz. Among the various dishes there was Cajeta-Obleas from Mexico.

A sweet covered caramel cookie. From Kyrgyzstan the participants brought Toi-Talkan, which is a kind of a peanut bar. The Palestinians presented a two course meal consisting of vegetables and sauce, called Fatouch, but also an oatcake made of chickpeas and sesame, called Hummus.

On stage, the Brazilian and Ukrainian participants presented their traditional but also modern dances. Moreover an Indonesian guest showed his talents as a fire-eater.

Also the organization “Alternative 54”, represented through Martina Renner, showed their respect for the ISWI 2013. The organization collected their parliamentary allowance of the Left (Party)-fraction of Thuringia. The ISWI got the maximum rate of 500€ under the program of the International Brunch.

Forum ISWI 2013

Dear Participants,
we have good news for you. You can get a login to our forum. Please make sure that you use your FULL NAME and the E-MAIL ADDRESS we already use for the communication with you for the registration. You can find the forum here: http://forum.iswi2013.org
(It may take some time until you get access to the forum, as we have to check each application. We will accept only the invited students.)
Best regards
ISWI 2013 Organisation Committee

Visa Questions

Dear Participants,
As a lot of people are asking about Visa, we try to answer the most important Questions.

1. Do I need a Visa? Please check out following website: http://www.auswaertiges-amt.de/EN/EinreiseUndAufenthalt/StaatenlisteVisumpflicht_node.html

2. If you need a visa, you need a short stay Visa. For more Information please check: http://www.auswaertiges-amt.de/EN/EinreiseUndAufenthalt/Visabestimmungen_node.html !!!

3. You can find the list of German missions here (the List is sorted by country, but only available in German): http://www.auswaertiges-amt.de/DE/Laenderinformationen/03-WebseitenAV/Uebersicht_node.html

4. To apply for the Visa, you need to have an insurance. We will provide you an insurance during ISWI, but we have to fix some details first. We will give you certification of the insurance as soon as possible.

5. If you have other questions you can check the FAQ of Federal Foreign Office: http://www.auswaertiges-amt.de/EN/Infoservice/FAQ/VisumFuerD/Uebersicht.html?nn=480902

You've got mail...

...or at least you should have.

Tonight (our time) the mails which tell you whether or not you are invited were sent.

Congratulations to all of our future participants!

As for those who were not invited, we are sorry but due to our limited capacities we can only accept a quarter of our applicants.

If you have not received a mail yet please send a short enquiry to our and we will sent you another one. Within this week we will also send you further information concerning visa, travelling, accomodation, food and all other important information for your participation in our conference. If you have any urgent questions which can't wait a few days and for which you won't find answers in our FAQ's you can of course still send an email to .

In case you are interested in other student festivals you can apply to our partner festivals: SCIM (Maribor, Slovenia), ISCS (Sumy, Ukraine), ISWiB (Belgrade, Serbia) or ISWinT (Timisoara, Romania).

Application is closed. The voting has begun.

Dear applicants,

we know, you are all very excited to know whether you will be invited or not. We fully understand this. But we need to read and consider every of your applications carefully before we can inform any of you. This will take some time, we plan and hope to finish by the end of February.

Please be patient and refrain from asking. If there occur any other questions we are happy to answer them (questions[at]iswi.org) . Especially when they aren't already answered in our FAQs (http://www.iswi2013.org/en/participants/faq) .

ISWI2013 Organisation Committee

What is ISWI?

The “International Student Week in Ilmenau” is a conference for students organized by students. Over 300 participants from more than 70 different countries took part in the last ISWI in 2011.
Compared to other similar events ISWI is known for its focus on group work, lectures and debates on a certain main topic, to which the conference is dedicated. As main topic the organizing committee always tries to find areas of tension that include recent problems and developments in the world.
The main aim of the ISWI is to bring young people from all over the world together and serve as a platform for exchange and getting to know each other as well as for discussion and working out ideas to solve recent problems. The official language of the conference is English.

Introducing: The Topics

The ISWI 2013 is dedicated to the topic “Youth”. It is taking place from the 31st of May to the 9th of June, 2013. We invite students from all over the world to discuss the different aspects of youth. Problems shall be shown and possible solutions will be worked out.

We have divided the main topic into sub-groups, dealing with a special part of the topic. The participants have to decide, in which group they want to get active during the week. Therefore they are writing an application to us, which includes three essays; one concerning the motto, one concerning their motivation to join ISWI and concerning their choice of the work-group. The students with the best essays will be invited. For ISWI 2011 over 3000 applications reached us. The groups consist of not more than 20 participants and are lead by two groupleaders, who are mostly students from our university. In the end of the week most of the groups present their results in a closing ceremony.
Here is an outline of our planned groups:

1) Identity - Who are we?
2) Our virtual identity - Living a virtual life
3) Young people's language - How do we communicate?
4) Youth subcultures and scenes
5) Education
6) Training and working life
7) Love and sexuality
8) Free time
9) Health
10) Addiction
11) Personal crises, personal happiness
12) Generations
13) Discrimination and equality
14) Inclusion
15) Participation and commitment
16) Economy
17) Consumption
18) Globalization and mobility
19) Child and youth protection, young people’s rights
20) Science and technology
21) Environment and sustainability
22) Media
23) Faith and religion
24) Future
25) Literature
26) Music
27) Photography
28) Film
29) Theatre
30) Dance
31) Design
32) Fashion
33) Architecture
34) Documentation