Interview: Tell me all about Active Membership

This week's Risk Magazine article is all about being a Risk Active Member. What does active membership mean? Why would you join a committee at Risk? These are one of the questions we asked Agnes, Ine and Enzo. They have been/are active members at Risk and developed themselves next to their studies but also enjoyed their time doing this. Are you interested in being an active member, then read about their stories below!

Hello, Agnes, could you briefly introduce yourself?
I am Agnes and 22 years old. After my Bachelor Economics & Business Economics, I chose to do the Master Finance. At the end of my Bachelor I chose to join Risk. I have been active for one year, I joined the Risk Conference Committee and organized the Risk Conference 2017 with the theme: ‘Innovations in the Financial World’.

How did you decide to become active within Risk?
When I decided I wanted to do the Master Finance, I also decided I wanted to be active at a study association. I chose Risk because this association was most suitable for me. The Risk Conference drew my attention because I wanted to organize a large activity. I had organized a symposium before, but nothing like this.

What do you like most about Risk?
It is very easy to meet people, and the board is approachable as well. Since Risk is not a large scale organization it is easy to get to know all the other active members and the board. Especially in this phase of my study I appreciate that.

Since Risk is not a large scale organization, it is easy to get know all the other active members and the board.

You say people at Risk know each other very well, do you think this could be a barrier for outsiders?
No, I don’t think so. People know each other very well because Risk is not that big, but there is a very open atmosphere. I, for example, joined Risk on my own, since none of my friends were interested in Finance. But I never saw this as a barrier.

Did you become close with your committee?
We started in the summer, a period where you do not see each other that often, but eventually we became really close. We even went on a weekend trip twice, once to Antwerp and once to Gdansk. And even now after the conference we still see each other, for example some of us are now at the Risk Advisory Inhouse Days.

Why did you chose the position of ‘Day Organization’?
I like to structure events and make sure everything runs smoothly. Therefore, the position 'Day Organization' suits my personality very well.

The Conference Committee has a relatively high workload, did you have difficulties combining this with your study?
No, especially for my position. For me there were two periods who were busy, first when the Day Organization Committee joined us and during the last month before the conference. But I knew beforehand these periods were coming, so I was able to anticipate on this and passed all of my exams.

I was able to anticipate on the busy periods and passed all of my exams.

Do you think your experience in the Conference Committee changed your approach to firms?
We had to make a lot of phone calls to firms and approach a lot of people, eventually this becomes ‘normal’. So you get a lot of experience in this, that can boost your self-confidence. I am sure this will help me when I have to apply for a job.

What are you most proud of?
The moment that we received our flowers at the end of the conference, even though I did not realize yet that the whole conference was a big success. During the day I thought we really had everything under control. We worked one year for this event, and it was over before I even realized it. When the conference was over, Risk Chairman Tim came over and said: Agnes, I want you to hand over the walkie, stop stressing about what has to be done and enjoy your dinner. It was difficult for me to hand over the control.

If there is one thing you could say to students who are thinking about becoming an active member, what would it be?
A year in the conference committee was very educational for me, as you see all the different aspects of the conference, even if it is not for your position. You work together with a really close group and meet so many new people of the other committees. Next to learning a lot, it is a lot of fun as well. When you organize such a day, there are 350 students interested in your event. Besides, they come to thank you for the great event. That is really unforgettable, and something to be proud of.

Hello Ine, could you briefly introduce yourself?
Hello, I am Ine and currently in the 3th year of Business Administration. I started at Risk with the PR & Logistics position in the Activity Committee two years ago. The year after, I joined the Accountancy Week Committee as one of the Commercial Relations.

Why did you decide to join a committee at Risk?
I just started the track Accountancy in the second year of my study, and basically wanted to meet more people. I was not particularly focused on my career but mainly on meeting people at the association. As I started with the Activity Committee, I quickly met all the active members and of course the participants of the activities we organized.

I wanted to meet more people.

What is the best part of being an active member according to you?
I would say the socials. The conference social, the beginning of the year social and the ‘Sinterklaas-evening' are my favorites, so mainly the informal activities. It is nice to become close with people, my committee and I even went on a holiday together. It was a very nice way to get to know each other a lot better and also in another way than the weekly meetings.

So am I understanding it correctly; the main reason for you to join Risk were the social activities?
Yes, but I also enjoyed the investment evenings. These have a social part, as well as an informative part. Same goes for all the accountancy related activities, these are very informative, but they also have a social aspect.

Did you specifically chose for the position Commercial Relations in the Accountancy Week Committee?
No, it was not my first choice. But due to being the Commercial Relations, I got in touch with many recruiters and it is interesting to see that side of an activity as well.

What would you like to say to everyone who is thinking about becoming an active member?
Just do it! It is a good way to develop yourself, enlarge your network and your student life becomes much more fun. Do not be afraid you will not fit in, as there are so many different people at Risk, so everyone will definitely fit in.

There are so many different people at Risk, everyone will definitely fit in.

Hello Enzo, why did you become an active member at Risk?
I became an active member for multiple reasons. First of all, I always liked to be active next to my studies. Secondly, I believe that joining a committee makes it easier to get involved in a study association. Thirdly, it is a good way to develop yourself both professionally and socially. When I applied for the Risk Activity Committee I knew that I would organize social activities for my fellow students which sounded appealing to me. Furthermore, it is a nice way to get to know Risk and a first step to a more serious committee.

How did you get in touch with Risk?
My roommate, Thomas, was already an active member at Risk and he was so enthusiastic that I applied for a committee as well. My study, International Business Administration, was really broad in the beginning, hence I did not know what I wanted to do later on in life. Joining Risk gave me an insight about which direction in my study to choose.

What did you enjoy the most of your committee year at Risk?
I really liked the group of active members at Risk. The best thing is that at every activity you see each other and make new friends.

The best thing  is that at every activity you see each other and make new friends.

How was your committee?
We are very close and even went on a committee weekend to Sofia. Furthermore, we always join several activities together, which caused my year to be an even greater success.

What is the special thing about the Risk Activity Committee?
Because of the fact that people join the Risk Activity Committee early in their studies, it is very nice to have your predecessors still in town, which causes that you get to know them very well.

Why did you chose to apply for the position of chairman of the Risk Activity Committee?
I also liked the position of External Relations, because you get in touch with the companies. However, as chairman you are more in touch with other committees, the board and others which attracted me a bit more.

Do you have a lot of freedom as a committee to do what you want?
It depends, some activities are already set, such as the casino activity, which is organized every year. However, other activities are organized completely by the committee itself. In these activities you can really give your own input, which makes it a very nice committee to join.

As you can read, being part of a committee is a valuable addition to your student life. You will meet a lot of new people. Moreover, you will develop yourself professionally next to your studies. On top of the educational experience, you will also gain interesting contacts in the business world. This lets you take the first steps towards your future career.

If you are interested in being part of a committee you can find more information here. The deadline for the next recruitment round is on the 30th of April, 23:59!