Interview with the 53rd Board: Project Coordinator
- Full name: Julia Plasmeijer
- Age: 23
- Position within board: Project Coordinator
- Studies: MSc Marketing Management and BSc International Business Administration
- Favorite drink: Any cocktail! (Sex on the Beach, Pornstar Martini, Moscow Mule..)
What to expect of a board year?
Why did you choose this position within the MAEUR board?
While doing a board year at MAEUR, I really wanted to challenge myself and step out of my comfort zone by developing management skills. The position that fitted most with this goal was Project Coordinator, as you manage a total of seven committees and have the final responsibility of the professional events that they organize as well as the International Consultancy Project. I also aimed to improve my decision-making skills, by challenging myself to take on a role that requires making many decisions and adapting fast to changing situations.
What can any prospective applicants expect from a board year with MAEUR?
A board year at MAEUR helps you to really develop yourself further and get to know yourself better, professionally as well as personally. You gain a lot of experience that is going to be very useful for your future career, which really contributes to how well prepared you are for your career. Besides, it allows you to learn more about marketing and the specific fields you are interested in, to network and spend time with others who share similar interests!
What did this function bring you this year on a professional level?
This position definitely brought me the basics of the management skills that I want to possess for my future career. As Project Coordinator, one of your main tasks is to manage and motivate the active members of MAEUR. This means that committees are going to come to you for advice. I learned how to come up with solutions on the spot by listening carefully, and learned how to quickly make decisions. Being a Project Coordinator also means being able to be flexible and adjust to changing situations, such as COVID.
And on a personal level?
These improved decision-making skills actually also apply to my personal development. I can be quite an indecisive person, but during my board year I learned how to make personal decisions quicker as well. Besides, I learned that I can use my enthusiasm to motivate and help others to reach their goals, which is very valuable to me!
What does an average day within your function look like?
An average day as Project Coordinator at MAEUR mostly consists of having meetings with the chairs of the committees! This means having a coffee at the office and discussing the progress of the events and projects that the committees are organizing and working on. As a board member you also attend the weekly general board meetings. Other daily tasks include making planning schedules for and managing the preparations of our events (such as Commercial Break), keeping track of the year planning, and making sure that our active members are motivated and know what is expected of them.
What tasks did you like the most?
One of the most amazing things I got to do this year was being in charge of organizing our yearly Commercial Break in Pathé. I really got to learn what it is like to organize such a big physical event, while dealing with changing COVID measures, together with my fellow board members. What also really stood out for me was managing the active member recruitment process. This included scheduling and conducting interviews, keeping track of the planning in this process and ultimately composing the committees who are currently working very hard to take MAEUR to the next level!
Challenges & successes
What are some of the position-related challenges you overcame this year - or not?
Combining the organization of Commercial Break together with the active member recruitment in September was definitely a challenge for me. These two large tasks combined, in addition to a lot of social and general board member activities, really asked a lot from my planning skills. At the same time, my task was to not only keep track of my own progress, but also of those of my fellow board members. Fortunately I love planning (surprisingly ????) and I really enjoyed what I did, so I managed to overcome this valuable, but definitely challenging period!
What achievement(s) from the past year are you most proud of?
What makes me most proud is definitely seeing what the committees already accomplished together! Seeing them collaborate, organize amazing events and projects together, but most importantly have a lot of fun, really brings me a lot of appreciation for what I do at MAEUR.
What is your most memorable moment from the past year?
I honestly can’t choose, but one of the highlights for me was the Eurekaweek, where we managed to gain the majority of our (active) members for the year, which was one of our first big tasks as a board. As I mentioned before, our first physical professional event of the year, Commercial Break, also really stood out for me. It was amazing to see how all of the hard work we put in resulted in a very successful event for the participating companies as well as the students that were present.
In general, what did you like most about a board year?
What I think makes doing a board year so special is that you are able to run an organization together with a close group of people who are actually going to become your close friends! It is a perfect opportunity to practice and see what it is like to be in a management position. As you spend a lot of time together and accomplish so many great things, you become very close with the people you are doing this with, which is very special!
What would you say to someone considering a board year at MAEUR?
Do it! It may sound cliché, but it is the perfect combination of developing yourself on a personal as well as professional level. Doing a board year provides you with management-related experience that, in my opinion, I would not have been able to gain in an internship, side job or committee. Besides and maybe most importantly, you really gain a very close group of friends who you will accomplish amazing things with, which is something you can always look back to!
What wise advice would you give your successor?
I can come up with a lot of position-related things but I think the most important thing to say would be: have fun! I know a whole year sounds long but time really flies by, so I would advise you to enjoy every minute of it together with your fellow board members!