As a student liaison serving on the volunteer working board of Emerging Arts Leaders Philadelphia, I felt so lucky to be given this valuable chance to work with a diverse group of talented person who are the leading actors in arts and culture sector.
It was on a chilly Sunday morning in April that I went to attend my very first executive board meeting. Unlike what I have imagined that there would be people wearing exquisite formal suits sitting around the table discussing issues, the meeting was hold in a rather relaxed and lively atmosphere. Everybody looked so nice and friendly. One thing that caught my eye immediately was when one of the board member talked about his plan in pursuing a Master Degree in another city after the termination of his board term. As a prospective arts manager, I admire such attitude toward “never stop learning”. Although people like him has already done great job in the field, there is still a need for them to continuously expand vision in a broader format. I think one of the reason why EAL: P hosts annual Creative Conversation to gather and explore pressing issues in the arts is that they encourage the pursuit of knowledge and hope to see more emerging and growing arts leaders in Philadelphia.
It was really interesting and helpful to determine my responsibilities as a member
of the member service working committee. My primary role is to build connection with college students in arts-related majors who want to gain practice and meaningful experience in Philadelphia and attract them to join EAL: P as a student liaison. To be honest, as an international student, I'm really not the type of person who can easily start a conversation with people I don’t know so well. Things like language barrier and missing of common topics always prohibit me from saying the very first word. But by the time I joined the board, I kept telling myself to directly face my fear to networking and try my best to cultivate relationships with students from diverse background. It’s tough but I believe this unique experience would become my lifetime treasure.