Since its establishment in 2016, ECS’s student volunteer program has helped provide unique opportunities to young researchers in the field while offering complimentary meeting registration. During the 231st ECS Meeting, more than a dozen students from around the world took part in the student volunteer program, working to assist ECS staff in executing a successful meeting while opening new networking and engagement opportunities.
“The highlight of my volunteer experience was helping at the registration booth,” says Julie Anne del Rosario, PhD student at the University of the Philippines Diliman. “I got to do my volunteer work and at the same time meet more people going to the conference. Being a familiar face during the conference helped me start conversations with peers and colleagues.”
Benefits of the program include unique networking opportunities with meeting attendees, symposium organizers, and ECS staff while gaining a behind-the-scenes look into ECS meetings, learning how registration operates, technical sessions run, and how major meeting programs are facilitated.
“I got to see a glimpse of how to manage a large conference such as an ECS meeting,” del Rosario says. “That experience is beneficial to me as our group is also about to organize a symposium.”
Additionally, each volunteer receives a meeting t-shirt, a complimentary ticket to the student mixer, a certificate of participation, and a free meeting registration.
“Volunteering was fun and I got a great insight into the venue and program, which benefited me in the subsequent days of the meeting,” says Frank Kindermann, PhD student at Technische Universität München. “Working together with the ECS staff and getting to know other volunteers was a nice networking experience. The many smiling faces that recognized me from working at registration provided a great atmosphere.”
After completing six hours of work on-site, student volunteers are free to partake in the many facets of ECS meetings, including poster sessions, award talks, and technical symposia.
“Through ECS meetings, we get to have exposure on what type of research is happening,” del Rosario says. “We generate new research ideas based from what we learn from others. Also, we get to meet experts in our field as well as our peers.”
ECS meetings provide an exciting platform for young researchers to present their work and meet others in their filed, with the 231st ECS Meeting showcasing over 600 student presentations.
“The meetings also provides a very good opportunity to look at topics outside your main research goals within your PhD studies,” Kindermann says. “ECS meetings give the chance for student researchers to meet people that you’d otherwise just know as names on research papers.”
To learn more about ECS student programs, visit: www.electrochem.org/student-center.