During my time in the Athens University of Economics & Business, and more specifically in the department of Management Science & Technology (DMST), with other colleagues, we started the alumni association of our department. Being the first to get accepted as students (department formed in 2000), we took upon us to start an association that would guide, help and connect our alumni!
Having neglected the association for some time, when in 2010 I found out that it was standing in a critical juncture of being dismantled because of the lack of people to support it, I decided to act on it. I offered my help and was elected as vice-president in 2010. I also acted as a president of the alumni association in 2011, 2012 and 2013. Together with a group of dedicated colleagues, we introduced a series of events for the graduates, talked to the students of DMST and tried to support job placement and network creation for our colleagues. Among others, we organized open cafes, co-organized seminars and contributed to university activities but more importantly we brought new life to the alumni association, bringing more people close to it.
In the end of 2013, I found myself having new ideas and vision but not the time to implement them for the alumni. Believing also in the need for “recycling” people and ideas, I have initiated the process for “replacing” the members of the alumni board with new ones, calling for a new election.
I will continue to offer my guidance and experience to the new board, but with no formal role in the alumni association whatsoever, since it’s also not allowed for any member to continue being in the alumni for more than four years.
Through this experience, I have realized the need for strong bonds between people that share common education and common interests. It was made really clear to me that the academic community around any department, should serve as a guide to the professional life of each graduate and not stop (as it usually happens) upon graduation.