I have been volunteering as IEEE Region 8 Student Representative for almost 4 months (or 118 days to be exact) now. While there are even more than 4 months to go, I guess this is the perfect time to reflect on the experience I’ve had so far.
What’s my reflection based on? Basically it comes down to about 20 online meetings or conference calls, 2335 received e-mails, 509 sent e-mails, and two face-to-face meetings. Wow, it has never occurred to me before: This makes an impressive 20 e-mails received per day and 4.3 outgoing e-mails per day.
Whatever way you look at these numbers: at the end of the day it does not come down to numbers but the people I’ve interacted with and the things we have achieved. And this is where the my experience ranges from “Well, hello???” to “Wow!!!”.
When thinking about some of the support we have received from staff (fighting for database access for over two month, ect.), about the way some volunteers seem to understand committee work being about going to nice places + eating and drinking, … it’s more like “Well, hello???”
But then again, socializing is a part of working in such an international and intercultural group. Especially in Region 8 it is an inevitable means for learning to understand each other.
When thinking about the great activities that IEEE volunteers have organized all over the world since the beginning of this year, all I can come up with is: “Wow”. From congresses, job fairs, to field trips, soft skill training, competitions, humanitarian projects … The list could go on almost endlessly. And then there is also the scientific progress made in some of IEEE’s societies – simply awesome.
I am not the “everything is perfect” kind of guy. Neither am I the “everything is bad” kind of person. And for all that is great and all that is bad about IEEE there is one, maybe the most important essence that I’d like to share with you:
I do believe in IEEE Student Activities
… maybe even more so than before I started my term.
IEEE is all about the volunteers and the people behind it, so thanks to all of you who help enriching the experience for our members! I won’t start listing names, because this would only bring the danger of missing anyone. But still: Thank you all!