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[RESIGNATION] Official explaination of my role as VATSCA8 - and the story of a lenghty process to leave VATEUD

Martin Stockzell (1294494)

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Martin Stockzell (1294494)

First of all. Many of you might not know me very well. SCA has grown incredible fast since the pandemic and the introduction of MSFS has increased the interest for VATSIM and flight simulation to a level I haven't seen before. This is great!

My name (as you might see on the left :) ) is Martin Stockzell, and for two terms I had the honor of serving as Director of VATSCA, being involved in the training department for my "home-FIR" Sweden, as well as holding an Instructor rating and even working as a VATSIM Supervisior for some time.

Enough about me, I just wanted those of you how might wonder who this strange guy telling us this lengthy thread that no one will read to the end, is...

My goal from when I first joined SCA, almost ten (?) years ago and getting my foot in the staff part - was to free SCA from the claws of our division VATEUD. You see, EUD is _extremely_ oversized. With a ton of different vACC:s in all different sizes. Basically it was a real cluster-F.

SCA and EUD didn't share many opinions, mostly due to the constant micro managing of daily business, forcing an entire Division with extremely diverse cultures and procedures to use exactly the same "values" of determining how training should be run, what examination sheet to use, and what theoretical questionnaire to use - despite the difference in local procedures and mentalities spread among the Division. And as in real life - those who shouts the loudest, mostly get their way. We, originating from the Nordic countries know that is surely not how things are done here (hello team introverts!)

At a point it even got to unpleasantness, unfortunately including one of our own vACC-members then serving in the EUD lead team. This, no matter how ugly it was, luckily sorted it self out - but with a VERY bitter aftertaste. The relationship between SCA and EUD was at an all time low!

So in that moment, many smaller "rebellions" broke out their thinking hats and started creating a plan to force a referendum to leave EUD. But since we live under an American hierarchy, as you might figure out; it's not that easy.

However, fast forward until 2018 and a unofficial project group named "SCAxit" was formed. Many, many hours were spent on constructive discussions, creating different types of structures, even including other vACC:s with close personal ties to our way of life.
Of course, if you know your Constitution - SCA is owned by the active ATC members, not just staff. So a referendum was inevitable no matter what.

But first, the then Board of SCA unanimously stood behind the notion of creating our own Division inside, what was then the, Europe Region.
Then came informing all staff and mentors - and here is a very proud moment for me, not a _single_ negative voice was heard!

So, an informal meeting was held with the Region Director, and myself as "acting" chair of the project group - but mostly as vACC Director. Let's say that the first impressions wasn't met with extreme enthusiasm :)

However, before we could move on, spring of 2020 came and with that my motivation and mental health deteriorated. Also my term as Director was up and I had decided not to pursue another term. 

Fast forward about a year later and my motivation for VATSIM was still 0, however my motivation for this project was at an all time high. I asked our Director and Board to be appointed "Special Assistant" and to have their mandate of moving things forward. This was granted and the project group restarted - now officially (-ish) named "VATNEU - VATSIM Northern Europe Division" (trust me, we had a LOT of silly names but this one stuck).

We refreshed our draft to officially petition the VP EMEA (previously Region Director, but since the EC was disbanded they were now a part of the BoG) to let us create our own Division, and I must say that I was actually surprised with the respect we were met with. Serious discussions that wasn't just words to use time before a basic "no". This was actually something that could be real.

We started working even harder, to include a proper division structure, goals, technical solutions - you name it, we had it!

This was ultimately a decision that the VP EMEA could take alone, but I completely understand that he wanted input from other BoG members since this really was unprecedented!

Sadly, after many years of hard work, long hours of discussions, drafting, thinking, meeting and out right working our asses of - the sad answer in the end was a no.

I'm not going to lie. It was a real punch in the gut! Firstly disappointment, then anger from a lot of contradictions in the final decision, and then basically just emptiness. I felt like a failure for working my ass of, together with a BUNCH of like minded people, not only from our vACC but two others - just to get nothing in return...

So obviously, this is my official resignation from the role of "Special Assistant to the Director", since this was my only role - and I subsequently failed that. 
However I can't thank the project group(s) enough and the people working side by side with me for years of this.

And just to clarify something. This post is not intended to start a flame war against EUD nor EMEA or _any_ specific person in any role. I respect their positions, because I know exactly how motivated they are in their roles, because I was just in a similar place.

So please, don't spread nasty rumors or harass anyone. It's not only against CoC and CoR, but it's genuinely not doing anyone any favors! 

This is also my notice of an indeterminate leave from everything VATSIM. I have nothing left to give - this was my way back. 
But I will hopefully see you back in the virtual skies again!

If you have made it this far, thank you for reading. Thank you for choosing SCA - where we do shit the Nordic way!


Martin Stockzell
Special Assistant to the Director (ret), former Director of VATSIM Scandinavia, former VATSIM Supervisor, former VATSIM Instructor, former Training Assistant Sweden, former Mentor Sweden. Proud Scandinavian!

Edited by Martin Stockzell (1294494)
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