Eva Wong: A Global Convener

Name: Eva Wong

Program: Science and Business

Year: 3A

Eva is the current Local Committee President of AIESEC Waterloo – a student-run non-profit organization that helps students gain global leadership skills.  Dedicated and an inspiration to many, she tells us how AIESEC has changed her life. 

How did you get involved in AIESEC Waterloo?

I’ve been in AIESEC for 2 1/2 years.  I was part of AIESEC Laurier first, and then when Waterloo was starting up their chapter I helped out and switched over.  The incoming president of AIESEC Laurier 2014 got me in contact with the previous president of AIESEC Waterloo and I talked with him about what we needed to do to start up the Waterloo chapter.

What drove your passion to start up an AIESEC chapter in Waterloo?

My motivation was that I really wanted to go on an exchange because my brother went on an exchange and I saw the impact that he got from it.  So, I wanted Waterloo to have a chapter so that Waterloo students could go abroad as well.  Starting something new was also exciting.

What unique opportunities have you experienced through AIESEC?

I’ve been fortunate enough to go to three international conferences.  The first international conference that I went to was in Mexico.  I never imagined that I would go to Mexico…not even for vacation!  It was the first time I actually understood the global impact of AIESEC.  Just seeing how loving and caring everyone was…the Latin American people have so much energy, they treat you like family.

I also got to go to Hong Kong. That conference was different, and it was more about sustainability, education, and social issues in Hong Kong.  Since I grew up in Canada, I brought a lot of my perspective to the Hong Kong students and they really appreciated what I told them because it was different from their perspectives.  

The most recent one that I had the privilege to go to was in Greece.  It was a conference just for all the presidents of local chapters.  A lot of people say it’s a lonely role as president because you only manage your vice presidents, but then you realize you have a huge network of presidents worldwide who are doing the same thing as you!  Everyone’s term starts at different times so, they tell you what you’re probably going to encounter, how to overcome it and if you ever need help you have lots of people to turn to! These people are from all over, for example India or Spain! Being in AIESEC I have been able to expand my global network a lot.  

What has been your most memorable experience so far in AIESEC?

Hmm…that’s really tough! I would say the most recent conference, which was the National Congress in Ottawa. We have only been a chapter for nine months but we had the largest delegation and we also won Best Marketing award for 2014.  It was incredible to see the progress and achievements considering we were so new.  The support we received from every one was awesome; they were so proud of us and excited to see where we were going to go in 2015.

How has AIESEC changed your perspective on life?

You’re definitely a lot more self-aware.  Before I took on any leadership roles, I was a really shy person who hated talking to people, and was always too afraid to do public speaking. But when I became vice-president, I had to make sure I was leading by example - showing people what they could do if they just pushed themselves.  When I applied for president, I had to go through speeches and Q & A. It was a lot of stress, but I realized that I was actually capable of doing this. You have to take that leap of faith and push yourself out of your comfort zone to see what you’re capable of.  

What is your dream exchange or travel destination?

Honestly, anywhere.  Spin the globe and just point to a spot!

 

If you want to learn more about AIESEC Waterloo you can check out their Facebook page!