Are you interested in becoming SWE’s FY16 Collegiate Director?
You may have seen the call for applicants from SWE HQ. With the application due on February 1, I wanted to share my experience so far as the FY15 Collegiate Director to provide you with a better sense of what the role is all about… or rather, the “Five Ws” of the role.
The Collegiate Director serves on SWE’s Board of Directors in a one-year term. The Collegiate Director acts as a liaison to collegiate leaders, contributes collegiate knowledge and interests to the board, and performs other duties as requested.
Nicole Woon (FY15 Collegiate Director) with past Collegiate Directors (clockwise from top): Ellen McIsaac, Kaitlyn Bunker, and Brittney Elko.
Responsibilities depend on the year’s strategic plan, bylaws proposals, and other timely projects and task forces. For example, I focused on opportunities for collegiate members that are part of SWE’s global affiliates and further developed the Counselor/Faculty Advisor Coordinator role. You interact closely with collegiate members and leaders, and participate in several in-person meetings and teleconferences throughout the year with the Board of Directors. The Collegiate Director also serves as a member of the Senate. You have the opportunity to reach a greater audience by becoming active on social media, including writing a monthly column for SWE’s All Together newsletter and running the Collegiate Director Twitter account.
The FY16 Collegiate Director term lasts from July 1, 2015, to June 30, 2016. The Board of Directors have monthly meetings, six of which are in-person and the remainder conducted via teleconference. The in-person meetings generally take place in June for orientation, August for installation, October for the SWE Annual Conference, January/February for annual strategic plan review, March/April, and the following June. You also have the opportunity to attend two region conferences. Additional responsibilities may arise on an as-needed basis.
Being the FY15 Collegiate Director has been a formative experience. First, the didactic opportunities with SWE members are endless. I’ve delved into the Society’s rich history and its various facets, from advocacy initiatives to our impact on public policy to professional excellence programs. I continue to meet countless people from across the globe who share fascinating perspectives on SWE and engineering. I now hold an even greater appreciation for the hard work that goes into maintaining the success of such a respected organization and charting the Society’s future direction. Everyone brings a unique point-of-view to the table—with your fresh viewpoint as a collegiate/first-year professional, you play a significant part in shaping SWE.
Second, my leadership abilities are growing at light speed. There was so much to absorb when I first assumed the role; I’m still learning today! Despite the steep learning curve, people are willing to help every step of the way and connect you with the right individuals. Moreover, they support your plans as you determine your next steps in the SWE leadership pipeline. I’ve enhanced my abilities to communicate effectively, set long-term strategic plans, and empower others. The skills I’ve gained reach outside my SWE experience into other areas of my life and bring me recognition at school and in the workplace.
With the deadline to apply coming up on February 1, don’t wait to start your application. Please note that a new component requested in the application this year is a Collegiate Director Nominee Video. Please find more information below:
Each Collegiate Director application shall include a short video posted privately on YouTube.com. The purpose of this three minutes maximum video is to allow you a chance to use your creativity to tell the SWE nominating committee why you are the right candidate for the Collegiate Director. Possible talking points could include highlights of your SWE experiences, your vision for Collegiate Members within SWE, and any unique experiences you would bring to this role. This video may also be provided to SWE collegiate section presidents as part of the candidate statement package when voting occurs.
Happy to answer any questions you may have; send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Good luck!
FY15 Collegiate Director