Interview with the 53rd Board: Treasurer
- Full name: Ruben de Bruin
- Age: 23
- Position within board: Treasurer
- Studies: MSc Marketing Management
- Favorite drink: Leffe Blond
What to expect of a board year?
Why did you choose this position within the MAEUR board?
I've always been passionate about numbers and financial information. As a Treasurer, you are responsible for the financial health of the association, which comes with great responsibility. The combination of the two aforementioned points made me choose this position within the MAEUR board, as it was a great opportunity to gain managerial experience.
What can any prospective applicants expect from a board year with MAEUR?
It's a lifetime experience, which you will not regret! It develops your strategic thinking, exposes you to difficult and challenging situations and it allows you to grow personally. Next to all the hard work you will also make a lot of new friends and have legendary times together.
What did this function bring you this year on a professional level?
Next to developing some hard skills (e.g. accounting, budget-making) and enriching my knowledge (e.g. rules and regulation of the Dutch Tax Authority) I also grew as a person. During my board year, I had to deal with different personalities, nationalities, and difficult (unexpected) situations. Thereby I had to learn negotiating, making consensuses, having difficult conversations but most importantly how to lead one of the biggest associations on campus together with my fellow board members.
And on a personal level?
On a personal level, you will get to know a lot of enthusiastic people that want to contribute to a fantastic year. Not only within MAEUR but also with the other study associations that are linked to MAEUR. Ultimately, this leads to fantastic memories and friendships!
What does an average day within your function look like?
First of all, I quickly scan my incoming mail to see if there are any emergencies. Thereafter, I will start prioritizing the tasks for the day, depending on the events that are coming closer for instance. Regularly, I have meetings with the chairs of the committees to discuss their budget and financial progress, which is always exciting, because you will get to know the nice plans they are working on. Another main task of the Treasurer is to pay the bills and to book the several expenses and revenues in our accounting system. Furthermore, I have meetings with the other board members to discuss updates, strategic issues, and planning.
What tasks did you like the most?
Besides all the nice social activities that come with a board year at MAEUR, I liked the interaction with the different committees the most. During the meetings, we would discuss the plans they are making for their event. While doing this, everyone gets very excited and is looking forward to the event.
Challenges & successes
What are some of the position-related challenges you overcame this year - or not?
One of the most challenging things as the Treasurer of the association or board is expectation and stakeholder management. Every project, committee, and event has to do with finance, which means that I am involved in many things throughout the year. Therefore, it is crucial to communicate the expectations and financial possibilities and requirements clearly, which you will definitely get to learn.
What achievement(s) from the past year are you most proud of?
There is not one certain thing that I am the proudest of! However, I am very proud of our working mentality during uncertain times. Sometimes we were faced with setbacks right before an event, but in the end, we would always come up with solutions to make it work!
What is your most memorable moment from the past year?
So far, there have been a lot of memorable moments during this fantastic board year. The start of the academic year was a lot of fun during the Eurekaweek and the different Kick-Off events, to get to know a lot of students during social activities. Next to that, the Active Members Weekend and the monthly drinks were definitely one of the highlights!
In general, what did you like most about a board year?
What I liked the most about a board year is the combination between all the social activities and the professional work. On the one hand, you are actually working at the top of a company and get the chance to develop yourself professionally in a managerial role. While on the other hand, a board year comes with a lot of social activities and memorable moments.
What would you say to someone considering a board year at MAEUR?
Do it! It’s a lifetime experience and you will never regret it. During a board year, you have the unique opportunity to take a seat in the cockpit (board room) of a company at a very young age. It develops your strategic thinking, exposes you to difficult and challenging situations, and allows you to grow personally. Next to all the hard work you will also make a lot of new friends and have legendary times together. It sounds cliché, but I can assure you, you come out as a better version of yourself.
What wise advice would you give your successor?
First of all: enjoy it to the fullest! Time will pass by because of all the highlights, so don't forget to enjoy it! A work-related advice that I will give you: preparation = key!