On the 29th December 2014, a celebration of the 25th Anniversary of the NSTF Mini European Assembly took place at the Tapestry Chamber in the Grandmaster's Palace in Valletta under the patronage of H.E. President Marie Louise Coleiro Preca.
The theme selected for the event was: Diversity in Employability - Tomorrow's jobs in Europe and the Assembly's preparatory role: What recommendations?'
Over a hundred past and present participants of the Mini European Assembly (MEA) along with the distinguished guests were welcomed by Secretary-General of NSTF Mr. Francis Stivala who highlighted the long way the Assembly had come and how NSTF's flagship non-formal education programme has enabled participants to acquire both personal and interactive soft skills.
He also spoke of the MEA Alumni Network that was launched not only to continue to nurture present and future MEA participants but to provide a space were like-minded individuals could meet, network and debate.
Co-Founder of the NSTF Mini European Assembly Ms. Rosette Fenech, also added that over a thousand sixth form and University students had benefited from such an initiative and thanked the numerous individuals who have supported MEA over the past years and to whom one owes much of the success of MEA.
Outgoing EU Commissioner for Health and Consumer Policy, Dr. Tonio Borg, and former Ambassador and current cabinet member of the Commission, Dr. Colin Scicluna, underlined in their keynote speeches how important such simulations are since not only Hahn would they facilitate dealing with similar scenarios at the work place later on in life, but they help to foster understanding between individuals that is key to reaching agreements.
Different Alumni from the past editions of the Assembly also addressed the floor. A number of them highlighted how MEA greatly helped them improve their self-confidence and polished their public speaking skills, and how research for the Assemblies' earlier editions was particularly challenging before the advent of Internet! For some, MEA also helped them to channel their interests in the EU which eventually became their career. Recommendations served to include how the MEA could better meet the skill requirements for today's jobs and to keep with the times now that we are in the digital age, as well as suggestions to give more importance to lobbying in Committee meetings to match the proceedings of the European Parliament itself were made.
Alumnus Joseph Chetcuti treated all to musical interludes at different intervals. H.E. Marie Louise Coleiro Preca concluded the session by praising NSTF for providing an opportunity such as the Mini European Assembly for young people and pledging her support to other NSTF initiatives.