After the first successful edition in Poland, it was logical that the following year the event would take place in Italy since the idea was born out of a Polish-Italian collaboration. The two main leaders behind bringing the event to Milano were Carlo and Fabrizio Bitetto which both at some point had the role of president of ESN Italy and were working as Head and Vice-head of the OC for this event.
One of the decisions was to change the name of the event from ESN TEAM to International Erasmus Games or IEG, since it was felt that it is easier to understand what the event is about. The logo of the IEG was created by Katarína Kyselicová, an ESNer from Slovakia, and it included the ESN star, and the balls of the three sports that up until point were played during IEG: Basketball, Volleyball and Football.
After a flag parade with beautiful weather ending in front of the Milano Cathedral, two days of intense competitions took place with ESN Romania winning in basketball and volleyball and ESN Denmark winning in futsal.
"My name is Nino Wilkins, I am an ESNer from Switzerland and I have been a part of the IEG project since its first edition. During the second edition, I was part of the International OC of the IEG. This was also the first IEG which I attended and it was a wonderful and unforgettable experience and ever since I got completely hooked on the project and am personally still invested in its continuous development. The central and easily accessible location of Milano surely helped to motivate countries to participate although some countries found creative solutions to get to Milano. For example, there was a “Balkan bus” which brought participants from Bosnia & Herzegovina, Serbia and Croatia. The event itself was a success and over 350 participants left Milano with great memories. It started on Thursday with the opening ceremony and Champions League-style drawing, followed by a wonderful Flag Parade to the Duomo of Milano and had its highlight on Saturday evening, where the players stood all together singing and celebrating after the final match on the pitch of the nice stadium where the finals happened. Throughout the weekend a lot of new friendships were created, competitions were intense but friendly and people started cheering for countries they had had no relations with previously. A special shoutout goes to the team of ESN France which as their National Coordinator Kheireddine stated “came to win the hearts of the participants, not the games of the tournaments”.
A big GRAZIE a tutti for the motivation and the involvement which made all of this possible. The IEG Milano showed how big the event can be and that this initiative can reach people from all over Europe. Participants which were studying from Turkey to Portugal to Denmark to Estonia managed to come together for a weekend and enjoy one of the highlights of their time studying abroad."