Congress 2018 was one for the books!

Joining VicSrc Exec team seemed like a huge responsibility and it scared me at first, until I became the Congress Coordinator and I got to see not only all the behind the scenes work put in by staff, volunteers and exec, but also the initial reaction of Congress from the delegates. Seeing the delegates have fun and energetic, was a sigh of relief. Being Congress Coordinator, I wanted everything to be perfect not for me, but for the delegates. I wanted every delegate to leave Congress enthusiastic, thrilled and going back to school eager and passionate, and every delegate did. It took me a while to see that, despite if I made congress perfect or not the delegates would have fun regardless and it brought not only joy but sadness that this would be my official last Congress as a delegate.

 

The amount of effort and planning that went into Congress was unbelievable, and there are no words to describe just how grateful I am for the staff, volunteers and the other 14 Executive members. Being my second Congress and first year on the Exec, I was attending as a delegate, yet working as if I was a volunteer and it was definitely a strange combination, but in a good way! I was able to keep to my responsibility as Congress Coordinator, while still having the freedom as a delegate. It felt awkward at first when everyone knew my name, until I quickly realised that my name was at the back of every delegate and volunteers lanyards with an accompanying picture!  

It was weird at first, because I had a lot of responsibility as an Exec member, yet I was still given the freedom and fun as if I was attending as a delegate. It didn’t hit me until the last day of Congress, where I was the MC and said the official goodbye to all the delegates, that I had to stop and say ‘it’s already over?’ And then the tears came!

Congress was an eye opening experience, from going as a delegate one year, to an Exec the next year. It definitely shows how much hard work every individual puts in at Congress, from staff, volunteers, to Ormond College staff providing VicSRC with the facilities to make Congress happen!

Congress 2018 is without a doubt one I will remember. From seeing delegates working hard to dancing in the dining hall at the Gala Dinner, there was an obvious balance of fun and work. The amount of hard work and professionalism at Open Morning was insane. Delegates were so eager and attentive to the other delegates, and the level of work that came about from each team was INCREDIBLE!

I did have some doubt in joining the Exec team, but now as I have officially ended my term, I am glad that I went for Exec. Joining the Exec not only allowed me to grow as an individual, but it also allowed me to advocate and bring awareness to issues concerning my school that I didn't even know myself. From student rights to students being on school council, being on the Exec has allowed me to make change in Victoria on a state level but also on a school level, where I was able to implement change and use those skills in my school.

Although Congress 2018 was the last year as a delegate, this is not the last time VICSRC will see me! Volunteering at future Congress’ is a must! Once you encounter Congress and see the amount of passion, you will never miss one again and that is the truth. Congress is a unmissable event, and despite the sleepless nights Congress is one of the highlights I personally look forward to throughout the year. Not only is the environment so powerful, but you can see the drive in each delegate’s eyes and the pure joy it brings them, knowing they are making changes in their schools that matter. Although it will be a weird experience next year being a volunteer, I am beyond delighted I will be helping to serve a great cause.

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