Student Life

Events Coordinator Candidate: Vrishalee Jadhav

Check out our interview with GISA Events Coordinator Candidate: Vrishalee Vinayak Jadhav.

By The Graduate Press Editorial Board

The spring 2023 Graduate Institute Student Association (GISA) Board election cycle is underway, with candidates running for the positions of President, VP of Master’s, Treasurer, Events Coordinator, and Professional Development Committee (PDC) President. The opportunity for students to nominate themselves for one of these roles extends until the end of the day on April 23rd. 

GISA serves as the voice and principal events organizer for the student body at the Graduate Institute. Members of the GISA board are responsible for hearing student concerns regarding academic and student life, accommodations, and various other issues at the Institute. From April 28th to 30th, IHEID students will have the opportunity to vote online for the candidates they wish to represent them on the GISA Board for the subsequent year. The Graduate Press has reached out to all of the candidates running for the GISA Board this spring and through a series of articles, we will be sharing their platforms. It is crucial that IHEID students engage with the candidates and participate in this year’s election in order to ensure the GISA Board can meet all of the needs of present and future IHEID students. 

We spoke to Vrishalee Vinayak Jadhav, who is running for GISA Events Coordinator. Here is what she had to say. 

Why do you think you are the best candidate for the role of Events Coordinator?

I think I’m the best candidate because I’m motivated to enhance our experience as students at the Institute. I already have plans for the next academic year, including both social and academic events. Secondly, I would say that I’ve been involved with GISA as the class representative for my track, Human Rights and Humanitarianism, so I know various parties involved and I know how GISA works. I would also say that I’m aware of the challenges when it comes to events planning and I know who to collaborate with to find solutions to those challenges.

How will your experiences as a student at the Institute shape your approach to the role of Events Coordinator?

With the recent evolutions at the Institute, including the structuring of disciplinary and interdisciplinary courses, it seems like bringing together all the students is a challenge. So, I would like to work on that front and organize more events where everybody feels included and can socialize with students from other programs as well. Secondly, I find that as a student, our priority is to have events that are cost-effective, straightforward, and less complicated, but that’s not the case. At the moment, it seems like it’s hard to book common rooms for events as there is often miscommunication between the Housing Administration and GISA. In fact, as the administrative coordinator for the welfare committee, I found that it is hard to book rooms as they are too expensive and because of the miscommunication. There is also a delay in responses when booking rooms. I would like to correct this and have a less complicated system. Thirdly, I would like to say that as a student, we have a lot of resources available at the Institute. For example, we have the student wellness and wellbeing services, and it’s a lost opportunity if we’re not making use of them. I would like to collaborate with different services available at the Institute and conduct events with them. Lastly, I am in touch with Dr. Laurent Neury, the academic advisor for Master’s and PhD programs, who I believe can support the organization of events to better our academic journey at the Institute.

What other experience do you have that you believe qualifies you for the role of Events Coordinator?

My goal in general is to organize enriching experiences to whomever present. For instance, as the class representative during the fall semester, I organized a raclette evening for the class to socialize, but also discover Swiss culture as we were all new here. Secondly, we began the spring semester with a hearty brunch, which I also organized. On the academic front, in collaboration with Alexandre, the class representative for CPS, we organized an informal ARP session to have a transparent conversation with the second year students regarding our ARPs to help us make a better choice. I’m also well versed in English and French, and I am familiar with Geneva, so I know where to go when I need to organize events, for example, which catering services I should contact.

If elected, what would be your primary goal as Events Coordinator?

My primary goal would be to make everybody feel involved as students here and through events, I would like to enhance our experience academically as well as socially. Moreover, although all the initiatives present are doing an excellent job at making sure everybody has their needs met, I think it’s important to ask for GISA to make a bigger effort to make sure everybody feels involved. That’s my goal: to make sure everybody feels at home at the Institute.

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