Friday, 17 August 2012

AIESEC Assessment + Interview Experience

[This is kinda long.]

On one fine day a few weeks ago, Taylor's organized a Clubs Day, where all the clubs set up their individual booths on the paveway outside the Students Life Center.

So, while we were wondering around, we came across the AIESEC's booth. We just randomly registered to enter the club. Basically, AIESEC is a platform that helps youths to develop their leadership skills - they organize motivational camps, conferences and exchange programs too. For further explanation, you can go to this website : AIESEC Official Website

Suddenly, on 14th August, I received an email from AIESEC's person in charge informing about the assessment that we need to attend if we are interested in becoming one of the members of AIESEC. Haha. Never thought that we are going to be evaluated first before joining in the club. Somehow, my friends did not get to attend the interview as they were back at their hometown, meeting their families.

The email noted that I needed to fill in the online form by choosing which date would I be free to attend the assessment. It's basically assessment + interview. 


I was already home when the email "arrived" in my inbox as we didn't have SAT class starting from Thursday till Raya week. After contemplating for a couple of minutes, I finally picked the happy Thursday. The reasons were:
1) The email was sent on 14 August, which means the assessment would be on the same day. I was not prepared nor had I a transportation to go to the college.
2) I had the SAT class on Wednesday. No time ah.
3) I thought I could prepare something for the assessment - you know, do some research on global issues and also on AIESEC itself =P

.....

The Day.

- Actually, I came 15 minutes late. Grrr, blame the traffic jam! I left house at 4.30 pm because we did not expect the traffic jam would be that bad. Then, I mistakenly went up to Level 4, instead of Level 3 and got lost. Haha. What a day lah.
- I guess, I got a minus one mark there, for not being punctual. Uuuu, so sad ="(
- When I came in, there were roughly 15 people in that classroom. I whispered to myself, "Wow, quite a lot of candidates." However, it turned out that there were only five of them! 2 Chinese boys, I Chinese girl and 1 Indian Girl. Pfft. The rest were the 'evaluators'. They were so freaking scary, holding pen and paper all the time, jotting down scores or something.

We spent the first 15 minutes (or more. I was late, remember?) listening to introductory of AEISEC... I was trembling badly as I forgot to bring along my sweater. Again, what a day lah. The guy who did the presentation was a gregarious guy, he never failed to make us laugh. One thing about him that I would utterly remember is the way he asks audience at the end of his presentation for any question. "You guys cool?". "Yeah, we do!", that's what we replied and then, he would reassure by making a hand wave, saying "Cool". I don't know about you, but for me, it's sure COOL =P

Umm. Oh yeah. There were 2 assessments for us. Assessment 1 and 2. We started with individual presentation and our last activity was the interview session.

1) Individual presentation. We were asked to present anything about ourselves so that the 'evaluators' could get to know us more profoundly. 3 minutes were given to prepare. Since I was the "latecomer", I let everyone went first and presented. Mostly we talked basic stuffs about ourselves - where we are staying, what do we do, and any memorable experience. Two people talked about their experiences in PLKN (National Service) - how they tried to cope with no-washing-machine kind of life. I think they are in a relationship, not that I have any right to care anyway.

2) 1st Assessment was the worst. He showed us a video about one of the hottest issues online a couple of months ago, Save Joseph Kony. Out of the blues, the reporter (in the video) slightly changed the topic and spoke out his opinions about how that Kony issue affects Uganda, USA, and also China.

Oh, wait. Was China included? o.0
LOL, suddenly I am not so sure of that.

The 'Save Kony' video went viral on the internet, even I have heard of the video but I took no second glimpse to the issue. Imagine how I felt while doing the assessment, felt like a complete loser. Haha. Political stuffs are just not my cup of tea. I do understand the needs of fully understanding political issues by heart but I just find it difficult to do so (Not forgetting the laziness, of course.) When we were halfway through the video, the "Cool" guy paused the video and clapped his hands once. "So, do you understand what the video was about?". "Nooooooo!", I was screaming my heart out, which was heard by me alone, unfortunately.

"Okay, now I need you to form a circle and discuss among yourselves the circumstance given. I expect an answer in 15 minutes from... now!".

It was the same feeling as if you were taking a very important exam. You forced yourself to think, think and think, hoping that some splendid ideas would pop out in your subconscious mind. I did give some ideas but I didn't do most of the talking, as I was too conscious of saying wrong things of something I wasn't sure of.
The idea that I got in that short time was Kony is an evil man. "Save Kony" is only a campaign people did to raise awareness of the seriousness of this issue. Kony is not the victim, he is the man behind it all. He kidnaps women and kids, forces the women to become slaves and teaches the kids to become troops, especially exposing them to guns and bombs) in order to protect him. Lastly, no one knows where he is currently staying. Yeah, that is the idea that I received. Did I get it right, anyone?

Our task was to imagine ourselves as public figures, politicians whose party holds approximately 30% of the parliament chairs in Uganda. After the news went viral, what is our emergency response to this issue?

To be frank, we didn't clearly know which "issue" was the question referring to because too many issues were discussed in the video. Haha. But since the video started off with issue about Kony, we sort of thought Kony must be the vital issue here when actually we were wrong. We could actually talk about the Uganda-US issue that might affect the international relation between those two countries and whatsoever. Plus, I don't know how to define 'response' here. Does it have to be an action that we'd consider doing in order to promote our party? Can't it just be an emotional feedback like, "Oh my God, I can't believe this is happening to Uganda. As a representative of the party, I am truly sorry for the news. Let us wait for the government to solve it..."??
Haha. Kidding =P
No break given, we continued to the next assessment.

3) 2nd Assessment was easier. Still a group discussion, though.

Imagine yourselves as a group of pirates. You are on your way to look for a new island when suddenly a strong wave (and I don't remember what) hit your ship. Your water supply is completely contaminated and your food supply is wet and spoiled from the strong wave. Now, you figured out that there are five closest islands to you that you could go and seek for help. Pick the island of your choice and come out with the reasons why you choose the island.

It's the similar type of question as the one some people received during their Mara interview. You're leaving the destroyed world on a hot air balloon. Unfortunately, it can only fit for 5 people when you have a total of eight. Pick the ones you choose to be in the balloon and why.

Anyways.
1st island was the nearest. 6 hours of journey. Has natural harbors so you can land your ship easily and safely. The thing is that there are two CANNONS on the island and you have a freaking pirate ship! Who is going to believe that you come only to seek help? Nobody!
2nd-4th islands : Ah, so lazy to type. I will most probably repeat the same words over and over again. For short; one has army with swords, one has no natural harbor (which is quite risky) and one is a place where you can find all diseases (What's the point of going here? The water might be contaminated too.)
5th island was the farthest. 32 hours of journey. Can you really make it? It's the most safest island, however as you have no water at all to drink, you are plausible to die of dehydration. Especially being exposed to sun continuously.

4) Interview time! I was interviewed by that "cool" guy and a girl. I might not remember her name, but I know it starts with J, right? (If you happen to read this)
The same lame Questions lah..
1) Introduce yourself
2) Give me two strengths and two weaknesses of yours
3) What do you think of your participation in the group discussion?
But, one question was interesting though... Hmm..
3) This is a pen. Give me five examples of things you could do with this pen, aside from writing. You can hold this pen to 'experience' it.
"You mean, any random pen or this particular pen?", I asked. Lol. Some pens have an eraser or a liquid though.
"Yup, this specific pen. Hold it."

Such a weird question! Pen is used to write lah. Aiyoo. Then, I started to think of some silly answers. Yay! Got them.

"If you have a stack of papers, you can clip them using this pen as it has function as a clip paper too." They nodded. Uh-uh.
"The side of the pen is straight. We might use it as a ruler. In case we don't have any ruler and desperate for one." Nodded. I guess it meant answer accepted? o.0
"This rubber part of the pen (it is designed so that you could comfortably place your thumb on it without getting burnt) can be used as an eraser. It's really helpful, when you're desperate, again. I used it several times back at high school."
"This pen is a small and thin pen. We can hold it in our hand when we are giving a speech, for example, to reduce our nervous."
Last but not least... I just couldn't wait to finish it off.
"Since it contains a spring, we can play with the button to overcome the boredom in the exam hall though sometimes it makes some noise."

Cool right? *Handwaving*

Lastly, before letting me go, they asked me do-you-have-any-question question.
Just ask anything lah, like "When will we be informed of this recruitment result?" or "What if we can't attend the upcoming events?" or "Can we still join the activities if we are not a member?".

Oh, if you have the guts to ask, do ask them, "What do you think of me? How was I during the assessment? Am I capable of being a member of AEISEC?". If, and only if, you have the guts.

Edited, 23 August: I've made the cut! Alhamdulillah.