I have joined my fair share of organizations in my 30 years, but at the same time I have always been careful to join some pretty awesome organizations and AIESEC is no different.
When I was living in New Zealand (check for that post when my photos are scanned in!) I looked for ways to immerse myself in the culture and meet more and more locals as opposed to hanging out with just my fellow study abroad friends from the States. I am so lucky to have found AIESEC while I was living in NZ! When I returned to the US, I join AIESEC at Mizzou and met some of the best friends I had in college that fit in that same weird niche I had found in New Zealand.
AIESEC is the world's largest student driven organization, beginning after WWII as a way to develop high-potential youth and young adults into globally minded responsible leaders. This entirely student-led organization facilitates work exchanges between 110 different countries sending under-graduates and recent grads to job postings overseas, and welcoming foreign students in their local countries in the same way. Following WWII, and still today, there is a need to bridge the gap across people and cultures as well as the need for business schools to produce capable individuals to rebuild the economy; in 1948 AIESEC "exchanged" 89 students across country lines. Today AIESEC encompasses 100 countries in more than 1100 universities. AIESEC currently has over 28,000 members with more than 6,500 leadership opportunities and more than 4,400 exchange experiences. It is still entirely student driven with the university students conducting the matching and exchanging of fellow students, securing the local jobs and so much more.
I sent two college students from Mizzou on two separate jobs in Europe, while I was in AIESEC. I learned a lot from my leadership experience in AIESEC and I hope I had an impact on those we heped exchange, making our giant world smaller and more connected one step at a time. I had a bit of fun in AIESEC too which certainly helped ;)
At the Awards Ceremony at Winter Conference 2003
A night of fun at Winter Conference 2003
Global Village with my Pam :)
Mizzou's Local Committee