Amsterdam 2019 | National Selection Conference

The National Selection Conference

European Youth Parliament the Netherlands organises four Preliminary Rounds throughout the country. High school students from all over the Netherlands participate in these events. The participants that stand out will be invited to the National Selection Conference. This event will take place from the 8th until the 11th of February 2019 and will welcome 100 Dutch and international Delegates to the beautiful capital of the Netherlands, Amsterdam. Furthermore, these participants will be under the guidance and support of 50 young volunteers of the European Youth Parliament. Hailing from all over Europe, these volunteers have a large variety in level of experience, encouraging learning from each other in a rich cultural setting.

The National Selection Conference follows the format of other EYP sessions. During one entire day of Teambuilding, the delegates get to know each other through various games and activities, learn how to cooperate and start working as a team. Each committee has a certain topic, usually a current European or global issue. The delegates will have chosen their committees according to their preferences of the committee topic. During the two full days of Committee Work, the delegates discuss and research the issue with their group. They come up with possible solutions and draft a resolution. On the very last day, all committees reunite in a large debate: the General Assembly. The groups present and discuss their motion for a resolution, which passes through a debate and a voting procedure.

Besides this three-step format, the event also includes an opening and closing ceremony. There will be guest speakers whose interesting stories, careers or backgrounds relate to the event. There will be a cultural program, such as Eurovillage: delegations are assigned a country and serve traditional food and drinks from this country, promoting intercultural understanding.

After the National Selection Conference, some participants will be invited to attend international events. All participants will have the opportunity to apply as a volunteer to events both in the Netherlands and abroad. Others may choose to engage with EYP on a national level, as volunteers for our organisation, for example by giving workshops at Dutch schools.

About the Project Manager

This year, the organisation of the National Selection Conference will be in the hands of Thanos Theofanakis “This year I have the honor to organise this event. My name is Thanos Theofanakis, I am a second-year student of Liberal Arts and Sciences in Amsterdam and have been an alumnus of this organisation for three years, of which I have devoted a large part to the organisation as a volunteer. Organizing the National Selection Conference in 2019 seemed like a good way to challenge myself even further and at the same time give something back to the organisation. I will do everything I can to organise a Conference that is, like every year, academically challenging and socially interesting for all our participants. In addition, I will devote extra attention to something that is more important to me personally: that more attention is paid to the well-being of the participants, for example by ensuring more varied food is available at the Conference and making more sleep possible.”

Bending without Breaking

“It is not the strongest of the species that survives, nor the most intelligent that survives. It is the one that ish most adaptable to change.”

What is the EU doing right now and what should it be doing differently? This is the ever so relevant question that will be discussed during Amsterdam 2019 under the theme “Bending Without Breaking: A Modern Union in a Changing Europe.” It promises to be an exciting platform for debate and discussion on the future of the EU.

The session is being held in the lead-up to the European Parliament Elections in May 2019. The European Commission and the Chair of the European Council are also making way for a new generation.  The timing could not have been better. Besides the Brexit, the EU struggles to find answers to pressing problems like the migrant crisis, the challenges of the digital age and the ever growing euroscepticism in her member states.  More than 80% of the Europeans support its fundamental principles, but only a third has actual trust in the EU.

The need for change is clear, and the 2019 elections offer opportunities for such change. The role of young people in finding the right path forward is undeniable: for the first time in the post-war era there is a chance that the younger generation will not be better off than its parents.  Amsterdam 2019 will give participants a voice, to express their views on a Europe that fights for them.

For any questions you may have concerning this event, please do not hesitate to contact the Project Manager, Thanos Theofanakis (thanos.theofanakis@eyp.nl) or the board of EYP the Netherlands (board@eyp.nl).