Let’s talk about AIESEC, shall we?

AIESEC is the largest international youth organization, present in 126 countries. Three members of AIESEC in Switzerland share their experiences.

What pushed you to join AIESEC in the first place?
Rémi: Firstly, I was motivated by the experience that a student association could bring through my studies. In addition to that, as I am studying International Relations, I was really interested in joining AIESEC because of its international and cross-cultural dimension.
Sarina: It was my Global Volunteer experience in Brazil, where I got to know AIESEC and what it is all about.
Thomas: Before joining, I spent the first semester of my university studies telling to myself how bored I was and how much I needed to meet new people and to get involved in something. I got interested in AIESEC thanks to the volunteering opportunities. That’s how I discovered a very active, interesting, and fun organization. When I learned that they were recruiting, I didn’t hesitate a second.

What has been your favorite part about your experience so far?
Rémi: That’s a good question because I’ve had so many incredible experiences within the organization. But I think my favorite one would be the last semester, when I participated fully in recruiting new members. I was so proud during the first meeting to see all these new faces and to tell myself that it was thanks to our hard work that we had such a successful recruitment!
Sarina: The possibility to accumulate experiences I could never get with only university itself. You get to develop and learn so much about yourself, acquire several new soft skills, and practise how to work in a team. All this in an atmosphere where mistakes are allowed and people become your friends.
Thomas: My favorite part was probably the time I spent as a Design Project Leader. I could create and lead promotions for the different opportunities offered by AIESEC. It was a great way to use my creativity for the benefit of our association and to exercise my ability to lead team projects. I felt very involved. Some of my work was even used for the promotions at the national level!

In your opinion, what is the most common misconception about AIESEC that people have?
Rémi: For me, some people see AIESEC as a travel agency. Some of them think that thanks to us they will find a nice place to go to during their summer holiday. They don’t seem to realize that they will be part of an incredible volunteering or a professional experience.
Sarina: The most common misconception is that if one doesn’t study Economics, the skills that one can acquire through AIESEC won’t be any good (e.g. for Biology students, etc). In my opinion, soft skills are useful for every profession, and personal development through AIESEC is a valuable thing you get next to creating a broad network of people across the globe.

AIESEC in Switzerland at the national conference Do It 2016

Why do you think someone should join AIESEC?
Rémi: You need to experience AIESEC as its member to form your own opinion about it and to really feel the reality of being a part of an international network, like sort of a tribe you will be really proud of. For me, AIESEC really brought me this “little” thing that was missing in my uni life and doing stuff for AIESEC became truly my hobby!
Sarina: Because it’s a worthwhile experience that will develop you into the best version of yourself, to have an incredible time with friends, and to stand out from other students after graduating having been collecting real-world experiences.
Thomas: I truly believe that joining AIESEC is one of the best ways to develop your sense of leadership, to learn how to work in a team, to get responsibilities, to expand your creativity, and more; all this while acting for a global cause. Most of the members are indeed constantly evolving through the organization, even if they joined out of curiosity! Add to this the fact that you’ll meet a lot of very interesting, proactive, and fun people, and you won’t wonder anymore “why should I join?”, but “why not?”. If you think that joining a student association might be a great idea, then joining AIESEC is probably the best one.

If AIESEC has been your missing piece of the puzzle, wait no more, and sign up here.

Author: Melani Kalev