69th IVSA Congress Online Special General Assembly
Created by: Martina Marina
University : Univeristy Gadjah Mada
Gadjah Mada University IVSA Congress is an annual event from IVSA where member organizations from all around the world gather in one place to hold General Assembly (GA). In this GA, IVSA members will elect the new executive committee, chair of standing committee and working groups, trusts and secretariat, and regional representatives for the next IVSA Officials’ term. IVSA members also determine IVSA policies, approving MOU, and make amendment to the Constitution and Bylaws of IVSA in this GA. Beside the GA, usually there are also cultural exchanges, auction, and various lecture and workshops. The 69th congress was supposed to be held in Greece from 15th to 26th of July 2020. Unfortunately, due to the ongoing pandemic, the 69th Congress in Greece has to be cancelled. Therefore, an Online Special Assembly for 69th IVSA Congress was conducted from 7th to 9th of August 2020 via Cisco Webex. The Organizing Committee (OC) of this event consisted of 2019/2020 IVSA Executive Committee and some IVSA Greece members. Theparticipants are vet students from many countries.
The 69th IVSA Congress was held for 3 days. The main agenda is the General Assembly, which was divided into GA Session 1 (the first day) and the GA Session 2 (the third day). We started the first day of the Congress with buddy hour and IVSA Indonesia delegates’ buddy was Cahyani Fortunitawanli from IPB University, current PRC. She explained about the congress in general and told us about how we supposed to act during the congress. After that, the first session of the GA started. First of all, Elwin, the current president of IVSA explained about IVSA and introduced Robert’s Rules of Order Newly Revised for the GA. After that the voting delegates from each country had the roll call in the voting delegates’ room. The next agenda was to vote for election committee, election chair and parliamentarian. After the vote finished, we moved on to the amendment and the approval to the proposed agenda, presentation of nominees, and approval of minutes from the 68th IVSA Symposium in Morocco. We continued to the agenda of GA which was constitutional and bylaws amendments. There were 8 proposed amendment in total (7 for bylaws and 1 for constitution). The discussion for 6 amendment finished on the first day of the congress. Two amendments were tabled due to endless discussion. Those two were the bylaw amendment (elections) and constitutional amendment (IVSA Structure).
For the second day, we had Alumni Webinar, Committee Workshop, Nominee Time, and EO/Regional Meetings. The first in the agenda was Alumni Webinar where some IVSA Alumni gave insight of various topics such as Client Management, 5 Pillars of Personal Health, Humane Handling of Cattle, etc in the form of videos. After that, we had workshops which were held by IVSA’s standing committee. There were 5 workshops in total and we were able to choose one that interested us the most. I chose Animal Welfare Committee Workshop. The SCAW team began the workshop by giving a brief explanation about animal welfare. After that, the participants were divided into smaller group where we can discuss about animal welfare in Industrial Farming. The next on the agenda was Nominee Time. In this Nominee Time, the nominees for the next IVSA Officials were given questions regarding the position that they applied to. There were 3 Cisco Webex rooms that the delegates can join in order to listen to the Nominees’ answers. The first room was for Secretariats and Trustees, the second room was for Regional Representatives and Chair of Standing Committee, and the last room was for Executive Committees. From the Nominee Time, we were able to know the nominees better. Last on the agenda was EO/Regional Meetings. I joined the Asia and Pacific Regional Meeting. Andre Firmansyah as Asia’s regional representative and Faith as Pacific’s regional representative lead the meeting. We talked about many things such as issues that each EO had, things that the all the EOs countries had in common, and many more. This meeting summed up the second day of the Congress.
The last day of the Congress started with buddy time. Kak Nita explained briefly about what we were going to do on the third day. After buddy time, we officially started the second session of GA. First, the Election Committee presented about the voting system for electing new executive committee, chair of standing committee and working groups, trusts and secretariat, and regional representatives for the next IVSA Officials’ term. Since this was an online congress, the votes were casted using Google Form by the voting delegates. It was complex and many delegates were confused. But in the end everything turned out well. During the voting time, we also continued discussing the GA’s agenda. We approved MOU of IVSA x IFMSA, IVSA x IPSF, IVSA x ISOHA, and IVSA x EAEVE. The other GA’s agenda were approving EXCO’s report, presentation of 68th Symposium in Morocco, presentation of 69th Symposium in Indonesia, and also presentation of the 70th Congress in Netherlands. We also discussed about the base factor of IVSA’s annual fee and currency conversion rate, the preliminary budget, etc. The last agenda of the GA was continuing the constitutional and bylaws amendments discussion which were tabled on the first day. It was a pretty intense discussion about the IVSA structure. But in the end, the discussion was finally over and we got to vote about the amendment. Since it was the last agenda of the GA, Elwin finally concluded the 3-day Congress with tearful messages. It was the end of the Congress.
The 69th IVSA Congress (Online Special Assembly) was my first IVSA’s activity. I actually applied for the 69th IVSA Congress in Greece and I was so excited about it. But due to the ongoing pandemic, the congress has to be cancelled unfortunately. But nevertheless, I learneda lot during this 3-day online congress. First of all, I gained a better understanding about IVSA, how this organization works, their structure, their events, their history, etc. I truly realized that IVSA is a complex organization that brings veterinary students from all around the world together. I also learned about how a General Assembly is conducted. It was pretty different from what we usually do in IMAKAHI (Munas and Mukernas) so I was confused at the beginning of the GA. However, I managed to understand it throughout the GA, of course with the help from the PR team of IVSA Indonesia, kak Nita, and also other delegates. There are a lot of good things that I can learn from IVSA’s GA. Especially about using time efficiently in a meeting to discuss important things rather than wasting time to talk about trivial things. I think if we can apply this in Indonesia especially in organizations, a lot of meetings can take much less time. Mostly during this congress, I practiced my English skill especially in listening since delegates came from many countries with different English accents. This congress helped me to understand about how I must act during officials meetings, especially being a delegate and representative of a country/organization. Seeing how this congress worked really excite me to join offline congress/symposium!I hope that I can get the chance to be a delegate for IVSA’s next offline Symposium and Congress. I also gained interest to be more involved in IVSA’s works so I also hope that I have the chance to join more IVSA’s events or committee.
One of the greatest memories from this event was the Committee Workshop. I chose to join the Animal Welfare Committee Workshop. What made this workshop interesting for me was the fact that they gave us time to do a small group discussion with other delegates. We were given “animal welfare practice in Industrial Farming” as the topic to discuss. Personally I didn’t really have adequate knowledge about industrial farming in Indonesia but I really tried my best to explain I was really nervous because it has been a long time since I have the chance to speak English in a forum. Fortunately everyone in my group was really kind and understanding. I ended up enjoying the discussion because everyone spoke casually without being too serious. I gained more insight about industrial farming practice from other countries. I was sad because we didn’t have much time to discuss because the SCAW team had to stop the workshop due to time limit. Nevertheless, I really enjoyed this workshop since I got to interact with delegates from different countries.
Personally for me, the best memory from this congress was the time I spent in the Indonesian delegates’ group. Even though some of us never met before, but I feel like everyone was really fun and kind. A lot of delegates were kind enough to help us who didn’t understand about congress. People share their knowledge, insight, and jokes too. This kind of things really helps me not only gaining better understanding of IVSA but also staying awake during the restless congress. I also gain more friends from other universities. The Indonesian delegates’ group was really active during the congress. So whenever the congress got a bit too intense, I knew that I can always count on other Indonesian delegates to refresh my mood and went back to enjoy the rest of the congress.
This online congress was interesting since I got the chance to meet new friends both internationally and nationally. Besides, the thing that I also found interesting was the fact that all three days of the congress finished late. The second day finished later than the first day and the third day finished much later than the second and first day. I think it was pretty hard for Indonesian delegates since the congress ended way past midnight and almost in the morning so everyone’s brain barely functioning and we ended up making jokes and new meme to help us stay awake. I also found that wherever Indonesian people go, “julid” always unify us even if we are stranger to each other. Anyway, to sum up this Congress was a new and interesting experience for me. I am elated to get the chance to be part of this prestigious event. So I hope that I can participate in the next event of IVSA and if anyone reads this, I really recommend you to apply for the next IVSA’s event! See you 😀