First Days, First Impressions, First GA (August 1st and 2nd)

So many things to say…. I will start with a brief introduction: I am Lena Zotova, soon to be Med-1 student at McGill University. Being Lena is also to be the Local Research Exchange Officer for McGill, the IFMSA-Québec Vice-President of Projects elect, the youngest and less experienced of all IFMSA-Québec delegates at the AM2016, and a girl with a big dose of ambition, motivation and optimism. You can imagine that I am thrilled to be part of the AM2016 in Mexico, and, hopefully, it is the start of a great journey in the exciting world of IFMSA.

My days before leaving had been hectic: as the main organizer of the social program for incoming students in Montreal, I had work related to the end-of-exchange celebrations (or, for some, grieving) for our July incomings. This, along with 30 hours of part-time job in the days before leaving, suitcase preparations and AM2016 document readings didn’t leave me a lot of time for sleep. Therefore, arriving to Mexico was a relief, even if I missed the first plenary due to the oh-so-common (very) far-from-perfect logistics of this AM. The warmth of Mexican people and of all the other international students nonetheless somehow makes up for the gaping holes in the organization (yes, I told you I am an optimist).

As IFMSA-Québec’s SCOPE (Standing Committee on Professional Exchanges) representative at the assembly, I am in charge of attending the discussion/workshop sessions on this committee, of setting the base for next year’s exchanges by signing contracts with other countries, and of all the fun things in between. Among these “things”, there is sudden popularity just because you come from Québec as well as getting to know people who have achieved great things by working in the IFMSA. I have to say that I really enjoyed attending my first sessions. Sharing ideas on different aspects of exchanges is really interesting and I try to take notes on relevant things that could improve our exchanges in Québec. I also expressed IFMSA-Québec’s point of view regarding the proposed changes of some SCOPE regulations. Finally, in a regional session, I have played a key role in improving the formulation of the Strategic Plan for the next 3 years in the SCOPE activities.

Now, I will get some sleep and get back to you soon! I am looking forward to a day that will be quite loaded with Contracts Fair before lunch and plenary in the evening.