How many times, while planning an event, did you ask yourself ‘Am I organizing everything the right way?’ , ‘Do I have enough money?’ or ‘Is the event really AEGEE-like?’. It’s time to have an answer to all the questions you might have in terms of ‘AEGEEan’ event management: your solution is called Events Quality Assurance Committee (E.Q.A.C). The E.Q.A.C is in charge of an important mission: checking whether European events are organized in accordance with AEGEE standards and giving support to the locals in terms of event planning. Recently there was the election of the new E.Q.A.C team and the AEGEEan met them and their current speaker Inana Namet (AEGEE-Toulouse/Paris) in order to better understand in which terms the new members want to contribute to such an important committee and what are their plans for the future.
The AEGEEan: Hi Inana, thanks for having us. Can you introduce yourself and tell us about your experience in AEGEE?
Inana: Hello AEGEEan ! My name is Inana from AEGEE-Toulouse (and AEGEE-Paris) and I have been a member since September 2010 (feeling old). Like many in AEGEE, I’ve met one person the first year who inspired me and encouraged me to be active ! Since then, I’ve been in my local’s board for 3 years, organized some events (TSU, local events etc.) participated also in some (NWM, Agora, SU, PRES). Now that I am taking a year off, I wanted to be much more active! I am currently Speaker of the E.Q.A.C. (I like organizing and analyzing stuff). I have a master degree in Applied Immunology (some Biology thing) that’s why I am also Liaison Officer towards WHO and UN AIDS. It’s challenging and I love it !
E.Q.A.C stands for Events Quality Assurance Committee (former Event Committee). We are responsible of assessing and deciding whether European events are in accordance with AEGEE standards. But most important we are here to help locals to organize events (providing guidelines, feedback) and we offer help in resolving possible problems in events’ organization.
Why is this committee so important for our network?
Well, currently a lot of events’ quality is not under assessment. But what do we mean exactly by quality ? Quality is about the content of the event (activities, workshops), logistics (does the local have the material available?), budget (is the event affordable for the local?), does it take into account the Strategy Plan and Action Agenda ? Is the fee affordable for the participants ? We intend to assess all European events (and more ) so we can have a picture of the whole network regarding quality and impact of organized events. Moreover AEGEE is aiming to develop non-formal education, so the committee helps in promoting those methods, monitors the activities organized to achieve it, measures the benefits it will have on both organizers and participants.
The E.Q.A.C has a new fresh team: who are its current members and which are their academic and ‘AEGEEan’ backgrounds?
Lisa Zeltinger (AEGEE-Gdansk): AEGEE: member for almost 2 years, PR Responsible of AEGEE-Gdańsk, organizer in every event made in Gdańsk also, coordinator of the biggest NYE in AEGEE. She is studying Sea Trade and Transportation and she a member of the Sea Scientific Circle. They are cooperating with the university and making conferences, festivals. She also collaborated with an event agency making cultural and music events. Their motto was ‘Everything is possible if you believe’ – and she believed joining AEGEE.
Maksym Kovalenko (AEGEE-Kyiv): He is 24 and now he is working in the KOSTAL company as production planning engineer. He is an active member of AEGEE-Kyiv since 2011. Ever since He was in AEGEE, He always wanted to increase the quality of the projects and events. It is very hard work because AEGEE is a NGO and all stands on motivation. He would like to get experience from other locals and share his. His goal is to make AEGEE a more serious and reliable organization.
Zvonimir Canjuga (AEGEE-Zagreb): Zvonimir Canjuga ,23, he is from from Zagreb. He’s studying Business and Economy at the University of Zagreb. He has been a member of AEGEE for almost 3 years. First, he was HR responsible, and currently he is the president of AEGEE-Zagreb. From the European point of view, he is the Vice-Speaker of the Human Resources Committee along with E.Q.A.C. His experience in organizing events motivated him the most in joining E.Q.A.C. His goal here is to help AEGEEans to plan their events in the best way possible.
Recently you had your team meeting: Which were the main topics you discussed about?
Well first, we now know each other, so it is much more interesting to work together. We had some team building (cooking for CD and cleaning the kitchen were challenging and we can say it was E.Q.A.C. approved) and we worked a lot. We designed a new logo during this weekend, worked on the assessment form, so locals can fill it in more easily and we can do a better analysis on the data provided. We worked on E.Q.A.C presentation and guidelines, PR strategy (we are here to help not to add more work, you know), cooperation with other European bodies, started to create assessment guidelines for our members, and a little surprise that will be released soon! So as you can see, we are a team highly motivated, which has already worked a lot!
Are you going to follow in the footsteps of the former E.Q.A.C team?
The former E.Q.A.C had great ideas, but didn’t have time to implement them. We are going to improve them, but our team is highly motivated and creative so we will also develop new ones.
Do you want to bring something new in this committee? What are your future plans?
Well firstly we wanted to change our logo.Then lots of projects, ideas and strategies are planned. The most important one is that locals understand we are here to help them in organizing events and providing them information.We want to create some templates for events’ organization (budget with the audit commission, incoming responsible file). We also want to cooperate much more with ACT, NetCom and Academy. Then developing our event assessment and evaluation form so we can use it as data collector to have a better idea on what’s going on in the network. We will also try to create a library of grants so we can help locals get funding more easily by providing them examples of FR files.
How can our readers get in touch with you?
Written by Larisa Smajlagic, AEGEE-Verona