ESN Vigo was founded on 5th November 2009.
Alejandro Vidal Domínguez (current Honorary Member) came up with the idea of creating ESN Vigo while trying to establish in his own city the model of ESN Maleventum, the ESN section that assisted him during his Erasmus in Benevento (Italy), in the academic year 2008/2009.
In the first meeting proposed to create the association, other three people joined as founding members: Vanesa Estévez David (also erasmus in Benevento), Lucía de Cesero (erasmus in Poland) and Francisco Blanco (old friend of Alejandro Vidal, whose commitment was fundamental because he had previously been in contact with foreign students in Vigo). After the celebration of an informational assembly, a first structure with 16 participant members was outlined. In addition to those already mentioned, Rut Guinarte Mencía y Leticia Miranda Blanco joined as founding members. Moreover, the following full members were incorporated: Manuel García Torrado, Rubén Pérez Vázquez, Carmen Casal Santiago, Lucía Díaz Rodríguez, Emérita Carballo Díaz, Jacobo Feijóo López, José María López Astariz, Victoria de Haz Iraurgui, Luis Trigo Vidarte y Víctor Javier Calvo Querol.
After getting in contact with ESN España, the group initiated a communication with Álvaro Muñoz García, then president of ESN Jaén and spokesperson for ESN Spain, with the purpose of seeking advice and counsel to begin the process to join the ESN Spain Federation and ESN AISBL (International).
Soon after, the documents required to legally found the association were sent and in March of 2009 a notification from the Xunta de Galicia (Galicia’s regional government) is received, stating that the proposed name for the association had to be changed because there was already one with a similar name (created by an erasmus coordinator from the university). With a bit of creativity, it was finally decided that the new name would be “Asociación para a integración de estudiantes extranxeiros” (Association for the integration of foreign students), which was accepted by the administration despite the spelling error (the right spelling for the word “foreign” in Galician language is “estranxeiros” and not “extranxeiros”).
ESN Vigo organised its first party at the disco Mondo that very same month, with a success that exceeded all the expectations. This way we funded a part of the travelling costs so that some ESN Vigo representatives could attend the RAFE (Annual Meeting of the Spanish Federation) in Murcia in 2010, where we were approved as an official section of ESN España and appointed as organisers of the 2011 RAFE. Until that moment we had not been members of ESN Spain, so the association advertised itself with the commercial name “VigoErasmus”.
Besides, the activity in the neighbouring Campus of Pontevedra started growing little by little. Two years later, in late 2012, the same happened in the Campus of Ourense, thus bringing ESN Vigo to all the three seats of the University.
Since then, ESN Vigo has kept growing up as a family increasingly more united (and increasingly bigger), with members of different generations, working and making all the efforts needed so that any exchange student feels at home.
ESN Vigo team.