As the National Selection Conference Pardubice 2022 was approaching, we started to feel that well known tingle of excitement that is not a strange concept to anyone who has ever had an experience with the European Youth Parliament - our beloved EYP. On Thursday 24th March it was finally time. We traveled to Pardubice by train and when arriving we found ourselves very pleasantly surprised with the warm welcome that we received as this was the first physical session for me and my friend and classmate Aneta Pracnová. We immediately spotted a cheerful person in the session hoodie that took care of us, led us to the hotel and through the check-in process.

Not long after, it was time for Teambuilding! Our rather big and diverse group made its way to a beautiful local park, people already getting to know each other. The whole afternoon was filled with games, dances, songs, conversations and much more. We started off in the whole group with some of the famous so-called icebreakers. Afterwards, we made our ways into individual committees to get to know each other even better. Teambuilding day has definitely proven effective in turning such a diverse group of people that have never met each other before into what I dare to call very good friends. After a few hours spent in such a lively, welcoming and affectionate atmosphere it was time to get a little more professional. It was time for the session to be officially opened. All the Delegates and Officials changed into formal clothes to gather in the lecture hall of the University of Pardubice. After listening to speeches given by all of the most important and inspiring people that made all of this possible at the Opening Ceremony, we could declare Pardubice 2022 officially started. The next point on the program was the famous Eurovillage where we had the opportunity to taste food from various European countries that we and our fellow Delegates prepared for this purpose.

The next two days were devoted to Committee Work, which naturally required a lot of concentration, dedication and determination from all of us. However, EYP is famous for being able to incorporate all kinds of energizers into the process no matter the professional atmosphere of the working space. We discussed our topics in separate committees, focused on choosing the most urgent problems, brainstormed ideas and started to work on our resolution. In the end we came up with solutions, named all the most important problems and called upon different actors to make a change…all that resulted in a resolution, which had to be properly formulated. We were also granted the opportunity to listen to an expert talk depending on our topic that has definitely provided us with more overview of the topic and offered us his or her professional approach. We also had a short debate, where the expert tried to answer all our questions.

Another event worth mentioning was the Farewell Party with multiple costume possibilities. Dressed to match our chosen time period – either the 20s, the 2000s or the future – we enjoyed our last night together and relaxed before the important events on Sunday.

In fact, Sunday was the day everyone feared and looked forward to at the same time. We had been preparing for General Assembly the whole time but a slight nervosity was just natural. Everyone put on their formal outfits and the debate started after a short opening. We followed a strict structure so that every committee had the same chances to introduce their topic, explain and defend their solutions and answer various questions about it. The debate was led in a very pleasant way and even though it has taken up the whole day, I must say I enjoyed it very much. All the committees have done a wonderful job tackling their problem and all the resolutions ended up passing which resulted in the General Assembly terminating in a very good spirit. Afterwards, the Officials gave their speeches filled with emotions and thanked all the important people that made this session happen. And us Delegates? It was time for us to part our ways as well. Not an easy task but everyone was leaving with a smile on their lips and with the legendary words: “See you somewhere in Europe!!!”

Bianka Mária Milovníková, septima A