AIESEC Canada’s National Congress (NC) for 2013 was held in Edmonton, Alberta this year from December 30, 2012 to January 3, 2013. I had the pleasure of going as AIESEC UBC’s Incoming Local Committee President along with Vivien, Vicky, Margaret, Jennifer, and Renata.

Like all AIESEC conferences, NC was loud, packed and non-stop. Sleep deprivation was a given. There were celebrations, initiation, legislation, Member Committee President (MCP) elections, and functional tracks that really put us all in that AIESEC Zone, or in more popular terms, the “conference high,” which is known to last even days after the end of a conference. Amidst the chaos of constant dancing, cheering and occasional punishments, I walked away with three valuable things.

Left to Right: Vicky, Vivien, Dominic, Jennifer, Renata

The first is motivation. In my opinion, the best conference in Canada that can really get you motivated is NC, especially because of the MCP Elections. All 28 Local Committees (LC), staying true to our position as among WorldBlu’s list of democratic workplaces, takes the election incredibly seriously. From the opening speeches of each of the four candidates all the way to the actual voting, an air of seriousness was present whenever the election came up. This atmosphere created an environment where AIESECers can evaluate the candidates and engage in a healthy debate, considering all topics such as LC, National realities, new initiatives, and strategies. That ongoing AIESEC conversation made me think about what I want to achieve in my year and had me motivated.

The second is confidence about the coming year. Going into NC, I was feeling a little nervous about starting my term. There was still so much I had to learn and figure out. During NC, my AIESEC knowledge was put to the test (seriously), I went through a 5-hour legislation and days worth of functional tracks. By the end, it felt like I knew the answer to any AIESEC question.

Local Committee Presidents from Calgary and Vancouver. Left to right: Aviel, Andrew, Dominic, Tamara

The third and definitely not the least is the Local Committee President (LCP) family. We went through a lot during initiation together, which “bonded us in suffering,” as the Outgoing LCPs would say. But in all seriousness, the ability to meet each other and talk was one of the best parts of NC for me, because all of a sudden there was this giant network I can access whenever I wanted as an LCP. It was an awesome feeling as well as a relief to understand that I wasn’t alone as an LCP.

It’s only been about 5 days since I got back, and yet I’m already excited for the next NC, another 12 months away! But it’s alright – National Leadership Development Conference is in May!

By: Dominic Sunga, AIESEC UBC Local Committee President 2013

Check out our experience of National Congress 2013 on video!