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blog post #4: My journey of becoming a board member
Your student time, the time of your life where you have to make most of it all. How do you do that? My student time started at the Hogeschool van Amsterdam where I studied Applied Psychology, but the whole time I did that study it felt like something was missing. I joined the study association and a committee, but that was not relatable to the University ones. My friends went to the Vrije Universiteit (VU), they had the most amazing times and spending all their time at their study associations. There the seed was planned to just go work really hard and fix that Propedeuse, so I could go to University and join the VSPVU. The time was almost there, and I started stalking the VSPVU-website to get to know more about the committees.
Introduction week 2017, the time this Sjaars was introduced to the VU, Psychology and the VSPVU. That introduction week was the start of something great! During that week I was even more convinced to join the VSPVU and expand my social skills. I was sure I wanted to become active, and maybe even join the Board! I applied for the Reiscie and was accepted as the Treasurer. Together with Liz, Eleanor, Nathalie, Tim & Celine we organized the Study Trip to Lisbon and that was one of the biggest highlights of my student time.
This VSPVU year was not enough and I decided to broaden my horizon even further and I became the new Yearbook Committee (Chronicles), Chairwoman. Together with Iris, Martijn, Yamal and Casper, we tried to turn the yearbook in a different direction. If you ask us, that is certainly what happened. The amount of fun we had as a committee was amazing and it even resulted in a big part of the 74th Board.
There was the moment: am I going to join the Board? Or am I going to finish my Bachelor? After being in doubt for months, I chickened out and decided to go for the save option: finishing my Bachelor. I was not done with the association, so I became the Chairwoman of the Party Committee (Feestcie) to organize the best gala out there! We never got to the gala, because we ran out of money, haha oops. To top it all of our second party was the last one, because COVID decided to be the party pooper. Together with Pieter, Suneh, Josie, Manon and Jimmy, we organized two amazing parties and I wish I could build a time traveler to go back there.
Still there was a feeling that I missed something. Seeing three Boards having so much fun together and made a friendship for a lifetime, it felt like I missed a big part of being a student. I made peace with the fact that I just was not going to do a Board year. So, the first deadline passed, and I felt at peace. When the deadline extended, I did not feel like my mind changed. The weekend of the official, second deadline, I got a text from Martijn with ‘Hey, do you know who is applying for Candidate Board?’. By that time, I hadn’t seen a lot of VSPVU-people anymore and I didn’t know anyone. He dropped the bomb that he was going to apply and if I was not interested. This one text turned my whole world around. The VU announced that education in the first semester would be online and I didn’t want to do my master online. I was also not ready to leave the University or the VSPVU. That weekend I’ve thought a lot and even the Instagram advertisements were stalking me with ‘Do you want to become a Board member?’. The thoughts that were in my head were ‘What if it sucks so much and I regret that decision’ and ‘What if I don’t do it and I will regret this decision the rest of my life.’. The second option seemed worse and I decided to jump into the deep. I texted Martijn and told him ‘Count me in.’. And here we are.
Dimma from the Future is ready to answer the question. ‘What if it sucks so much and I regret that decision?’. Well, well, well, Dimma from the past, I really don’t regret the decision to join the Board. My expectations were that the second semester would turn out COVID free, so I was focused on getting ready for that. Unfortunately, that is not the case, but I really have the feeling that my fellow Board members and I accept the situation as it is. We try to make the most of it all and up until now that really works for us. Due to being able to work in the VSPVU-room and have a lot of contact with my fellow Board Members, the first semester flew by and was really fun. The quarantine was not as hard as it was for other people, and I am really grateful for that.
The treasurer function was perfectly suited for me, since this function taught me things I didn’t knew beforehand. I do have the feeling that by the end of this year I mastered everything there was to learn in the VSPVU. I like being a contact person, where I can peek into all the committees and even guide some of my own. My chairwomen are amazing and so motivated as well. I like getting to know a lot of people that I would not have met if I did not do a Board year. I like everything in the Board, and I’m so happy that I made this decision to join the 74th Board. Are you still in doubt? Please make the jump, because it’s worth it.