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IAESTE participation at the ICoPust 3rd Conference

IAESTE participation at the ICoPust 3rd Conference

Pyongyang October 21-14, 2015

The President of the Pyongyang University of Science and Technology invited  IAESTE to participate in their 3rd ICoPUST International Conference. The Board decided that the President should represent IAESTE at this conference.

The aim was to reinforce our presence in Asia, where exchanges have  been growing in the last years and also to reinforce our image as a non-political organisation, having as our only goal the enhancement of young people through international multicultural traineeships.

IAESTE participated in a conference session on the Importance of International Practical Experience and in the Workshops on International Academic Exchange, Green Technology and Entrepreneurship. Our messages were well received.

I was surprised by the quantity and the quality of the presentations and speakers. Other than the many representatives from renowned universities from the United Kingdom, United States and South Korea, we had also two delegates from the American Association for Advancement of Science, a Nobel Prize Winner of Chemistry, prof. Peter Agre and Norman Neureiter,  the ex- Science counsellor to Madeleine Albright, US Secretary of State under President Bill Clinton. There was also a former South Korean  Prime Minister in attendance.

By holding this conference the university of PUST wanted to give their students access to the international world, as it is still difficult for them to get an international experience. Due to the differences to the rest of the world, the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea is an interesting place to visit and to enjoy.

During the trip I was fortunate to be also able to meet with IAESTE China and to discuss their situation and future plans in Beijing, one of the few avenues to get to Pyongyang. It was a worthwhile trip and I am pleased that we were represented at the conference. It’s the work we do now that may mean that more young people from more countries may benefit from an IAESTE traineeship in the future.

Bernard Baeyens

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