What I have learned outside the college classroom has been just, if not more, important than what I have learned inside.
Golden Key managed to develop both sides of that equation. I joined in 2010 as both a general member and the newsletter director. Instead of agendas our chapter uses a one page newsletter with pictures of past gatherings, speaker bios, and details of the upcoming events. But increasing member participation requires more than weekly newsletters, so I renamed the position to communications director and focused on exactly that! I launched our social media pages (like us on Facebook, we’re almost at 1,000 fans!). I even automated the tasks I hated: reworking our website to highlight posts from our email listserv and to pull the next calendar event to the frontpage.
I worked with an amazing team of directors that allowed me to dive deeper both academically and professionally. The directors I was lucky enough to share classes with pushed me to follow my passions, ask better questions, and get involved in research on campus. Together, we learned how to lead projects and delegate others, and even how to throw a rock concert (check out our annual Rock for the Hungry charity concert if you’re ever in the Gainesville area!). Treating Golden Key as an opportunity to develop our professional skills grew our potential.
Golden Key became more than just a name on my transcript or a means to a good student insurance discount. It gave me the real world experience employers demand, lifelong friends, and self reflection.
Mark Twain once said: "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things you didn't do than by the ones you did do." I’ll never forget my learnings from Golden Key - and neither should you.
This August Keivan will be joining Google’s People Operations team. Follow his adventures, and contact him, at http://keivanz.com!