History of BOSS
History of creation
In 2009, Sergei Varankevich, inspired by his experience of the students’ government at BSU and acquaintances with European student movements and their success, wondered why there is no student association in his native Belarus? After all, it creates an ideal environment for the development of each student. In addition, strong organizations of students help to improve the quality of education, its relevance, thereby raising the intellectual level of each participant in particular, and strengthening society in general.
Sergei began to organize first national and international seminars, conferences, study visits for students’ government.
"In 2009, together with a team of like-minded people (Vadim Ahremko, Evgenij Kislij) I decided to take a series of seminars on students’ government. Our goal was to create an entirely new student movement from uncoordinated student’s government organizations, and my personal aim was to work with people who are similar to me (full of initiatives, ambitious, eager to social success). "
At the first workshop, which was organized by the invitation of Ukrainian students in Kiev, the ideas appeared that became the burden for the seminars on the students’ government in Minsk, Mogilev, Grodno and other student centers. These ideas were: 1) the strength of students’ government is in open, bright, educated participants, 2) they can do anything at their university, and 3) there are a lot of unique advanced student councils in Belarus and they are eager to share their experiences, all that is needed - to set the date and time, 4) it is necessary to invite foreign student leaders to share experience and to show that the Belarusian students are part of the European student's family, and finally 5) Stop whining, it's time to act! Thus the program of action was born, which Sergey named "The Student’ Parliament".
"Nothing happens accidentally and good ideas should not be given up! One day I found out that the Chairman of the Ukrainian Association of the students’ government Lisa Schepetilnikova was going to visit Minsk. I wrote her a letter with an offer to meet. The meeting in Minsk did not take place, but I did not give up and during my first visit to Ukraine, already in Kiev, we met. We visited the Student Council in Teacher’s Training University in Kiev and agreed to cooperate .Their seminar on students’ government was organized in Minsk, where Alexander told about the same associations in Europe and about the European Students' Union. Now not only I, but also the participants of the seminar began to wonder: Why does Belarus have no national student association? ".
After that, already in 2010, Sergei began to organize in Belarus regular seminars on students’ government upon the European model. These meetings turned into a real school of leadership and self-realization, attracting the most talented and active students. These meeting lasted during 2010 and the first half of 2011. "The Students' Parliament" started to give first results in the universities. In the summer of 2011 a very strong delegation on students’ government (from the History Faculty of BSU) came to a seminar in Vishnevka.
"These people already hold serious positions. For example, Alexander Lutsevich was the leader of the trade union at the faculty and their student concerts were very strong. For me History Department became a real discovery! The fact that they were interested in was very important. The ideas of creating students’ association were expressed from seminar to seminar, but it would have remained at the level of good intentions, but for Alexander Lutsevich, who said: "We do not only want the association, but we are willing to take on the burden of its creation."
Alexander Lutsevich (the leader of BOSS from 2013):
"In the summer of 2011 our students’ council received a letter. The letter invited all the organizations on students’ government to take part in a seminar on the same subject.the time was perfect: I had no exams then. It was my third year : a golden time!
Then I was the chairman of students’ trade union on the fakulty from the end of the 1st year and had already confidently held this post. I was very interested in the topic of the students’ government, and I remember that I applied for the seminar without hesitation! As a result, there were three people from the Faculty of History. By the way, at that time chairman of the information committee of the Student Council, Paul Makhinov is still with us in the organization and he is the author of our training programs, seminars and workshops. "
As a result, on October 5, 2012 in Minsk the conference was held where BOSS was created. At the origins of BOSS were a lot of people that make the BOSS became what it is today. They are Vera Poltorzhitskaya, Pavel Makhinov, Anastasiya Filipenko, Vadim Ahremko ,Yegor Shestopalov, Ivan Zigal, Nadezhda Varivonchik, Marina Shtrahova, Mikhail Katsianiou, Yana Ustsinenka and many others. Each participant of BOSS left a trace in the development of the students’ movement in Belarus.
Key dates BOSS:
October 5, 2009 - the first seminar on student s’ government, the birth of the "Students' Parliament";
2010-2012 - The "Students' Parliament": a platform for exploring the best practices of students’ government and cooperation of students’ government’s leaders;
2012 – The development of the concept design of BOSS in Vishnevka and Festivalnij.
2012 – The first conference of BOSS (October 5): Establishment of BOSS, the elections of the Board and Leader (Sergei Voronkevich), approval of principal position of BOSS. The first competition of students' works, after which a digest was published, the creation of official site aboss.by, the concept development of Students think tank.
2013 – The second Conference BOSS (February 15): The new leader - Alexander Lutsevich, a new charter. The official registration of "Students think tank" and legalization of BOSS (September 3). The first book "Students’ government of Belarus" and the bill on the students’ government of Belarus.
2014 - The Third Conference of BOSS, rebranding (mission, values, PRINCIPLES, a new visual identity and logo). The guide of a student leader and a collection of students’ works. Study visit to universities of Poland.
2016 - Julia Dobyshuk became a new chairperson of BOSS at the extraordinarry Conference of the organization.
Thus, from 2009 to the present moment, a community of students’ self-government in Belarus has been forming – the Brotherhood of Students’ Government Leaders, that is, the leaders of the present and the leaders of future.
Students participants of BOSS from different universities and cities of Belarus create a community to share experiences, ideas, projects between the student councils of different schools and regions, as well as to get acquainted and establish relations with the students’ government at the universities of Ukraine, Germany, Lithuania, Sweden, Norway and the Russian Federation , hold seminars and workshops on relevant topics for young leaders, invite businessmen and regularly organize events where everyone can express oneself, share skills and knowledge with other members of the Brotherhood.