Presentation of the ASEF Community Award at the End of the Year Celebration
On Saturday, December 3, 2022, ASEF held the virtual End of Year Celebration, an event to celebrate the progress and achievements of ASEF in 2022.
The opening remarks were made by our esteemed guests, Mr. Borut Pahor, President of the Republic of Slovenia and distinguished sponsor of ASEF, Mr. Andrej Medica, Minister Plenipotentiary – Chargé d’affaires a.i. at the Embassy of the Republic of Slovenia in Washington, Dr. Igor Papič, Minister of Education, Science and Sport, and Mr. Matej Arčon, Minister for Slovenians Abroad. Our guests have acknowledged the contribution that ASEF makes in providing young people with invaluable experiences, serving as a bridge between Slovenia and abroad.
At the event, Mr. Thomas J. Brandi, ASEF President and Honorary Consul of Slovenia in California, and Dr. Jure Leskovec, ASEF Co-Founder and Computer Science Professor at Stanford University talked about the progress of ASEF and presented all of the activities and projects that took place in 2022, with more than 80 events for the ASEF community and general public showing “that the Slovenian community and culture are strong around the world”.
ASEF Junior Fellows (Antonia Starc and Dr. Tomaž Deželan, Denis Štepihar, Tadej Jerončič and Dr. Klementina Fon Tacer, Joseph Mezner and Mr. Sašo Šmigić) together with their mentors have presented the results of the cooperation they have established over the 10-week research visit and beyond.
Other Junior Fellows from various fields have talked about creating life-long friendships, mastering new skills, and how ASEF Fellowship changed the course of their lives forever.
At the celebration, we also awarded the ASEF Community Award to Jože Rožanec, an extraordinary volunteer who makes a difference in the ASEF community. Our recipient has reminded us all that “community building is about going an extra mile for the people in the community and helping each other grow” and dedicated this award to all Fellows he has worked with. His contribution to ASEF and its activities is outstanding and we congratulate the first recipient of the ASEF Community Award.
The musical performances were prepared by Jakob Kobal, 2022 Junior Fellow, an accordionist, who started his music studies at Berklee College of Music in Boston this year. He performed “Slovenija od kod lepote tvoje”, the lyrics of which are cherishing the Slovenian nature and people, and Fugue in C major, composed by J.S. Bach.
The whole event was hosted by Tjaša Mlakar, 2021 Junior Fellow, and Gašper Podobnik, 2020 Junior Fellow.
We thank the Government Office for Slovenians Abroad, who has supported the event, Studio Siposh team for the technical support, as well as all the donors and Slovenian families, who are supporting our organization in creating life-changing opportunities for talented Slovenian students.
Our amazing team on site:
Photo: Lucia Medina.