The one piece of advice I remember hearing back in my very first freshers’ week was to join as many societies as possible. I went to so many taster sessions, had an inbox of invites to events, and I still didn’t find the one I really, really enjoyed. It was only in my second year when I discovered Her Campus. I went along to their first event and was pretty overwhelmed by how many people showed up. I remember the committee being super friendly and I really felt like I’d found the group of people I was meant to be socialising with.
After being in the society for a year, attending events and writing articles, I decided to push myself even further by applying to be on the committee as an editor. Not only did this role spark my enthusiasm for journalism and publishing and the realisation that this is what I’m meant to do once I’ve graduated, but it really marked the beginning of my university experience. The daunting responsibility of being on a committee is completely overshadowed by the fun experiences and support you get from everyone else in the society. Having a close group of people you can always trust and count on really is unmatched when you’re navigating your way through your undergrad, which can often be a pretty scary and isolating experience.
Approaching the final year of my degree, I knew I wanted to push myself even further and apply for the role of president. I knew absolutely nothing about the position, only that the person who occupied the role before me had done the most incredible job and had really set the standard through the roof. The first few weeks, before the semester had even started, were pretty hands-on in terms of accessing email accounts, completing the relevant training and paperwork etc., and also just making the rest of the committee feel at ease about the year ahead. Now we’ve almost completed our first semester, I’m actually really sad at how quickly my time as president is going.
My role as president is completely shared with our wonderful vice president, Carlyn Robinson. Between the two of us, we’re responsible for publishing articles written by our society members daily. Our articles cover a whole array of topics so there’s always something that appeals to everyone which I love. We’re also frequently in touch with Her Campus HQ oversees and AUSA, exchanging emails about our weekly stats and progress, and any issues or concerns that might come up. But the best part about the role, as cliche as it sounds, is getting to work with an incredible team of people who are all passionate about the freedom of self-expression, building a better student community, and supporting one another through our time at Aberdeen. This year we’re also working with the local charity Aberdeen Cyrenians which is something we’re all excited about. We’ve also introduced themed article weeks, covering topics from disability awareness to sex to student recipe ideas.
While balancing studies and extra-cirricular commitments is a challenge, it’s definitely manageable and I would never let it prevent someone from applying for a committee position. I personally love having the extra responsibility because it allows me to divide my time and gives me another focus when the fourth-year workload becomes too overwhelming. To go for the role of president, you don’t need to have been on the committee previously. You just need to be committed and passionate about what it is that we’re doing. There’s also so much flexibility, and I’ve found that everyone is always willing to help if anyone is unable to do something that’s required of their role. It’s ultimately been a really enjoyable experience so far, and I already can’t wait to return after Christmas.