The field trip to Kosovo, a flagship feature of the E.MA programme, was by unanimous agreement a resounding success. This was due in equal measure to the indefatigable organisational activities of Marijana Grandits of the University of Vienna and the enthusiastic engagement of the E.MA class of 2013/2014.
On the dark early morning of Monday 13 January, 93 E.MA students boarded Ljubljana-bound buses at Tronchetto in Venice. Fast forward 10 hours and the unseasonably warm temperatures of Pristina were being matched by the warmth of the welcome extended to us by our host families in Kosovo.
What followed over the course of the next 7 days was a heady mix of info-packed meetings and frenetic social activity. The meetings with representatives of NGOs, media outlets, international organisations and others at the coalface of efforts to entrench and promote human rights and the rule of law in Kosovo were informative, insightful and oftentimes disarmingly honest when it came to the failures and challenges faced by those in the field.
The field trip to Kosovo will live long in the memory of all those who participated and will undoubtedly prove to be a highlight of the E.MA experience for many students of the E.MA class of 2013/2014.
Alan Desmond, E.MA Fellow
New Born. Some members of the E.MA gang gathered in front of the iconic 'New Born' on the last morning. This monument was erected in 2008 to celebrate the declared independence of Kosovo.
University of Pristina. E.MA students walking by the University of Pristina in the city centre. The words of John F. Kennedy written on the university wall seem particularly apt in this post conflict city, and strike a chord with our group of Masterini.