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Take initiative, engage, lead! A road map to success

The value of student organisations.

Photograph: iStock

Text: Skyler Bentley Hall

When choosing a good fit university, there are multiple aspects to consider, but beyond academics, how do you see yourself fitting into the student community? Joining a student organisation is an ideal way to engage! These can be found at any institution, large or small, but the offerings and level of involvement will vary.

Nanna Larsson is currently studying Business Administration & Sociology at Copenhagen Business School (CBS), and she has truly captured the essence of being a student leader. Nanna is originally from Denmark but has lived in the US, Scotland, France, and Switzerland. Her ambitious nature and involvement in the CBS community are commendable. Through a recent interview, Nanna shares a few CBS initiatives while highlighting her recent achievements.

Student engagement at CBS

Nanna is proud to be part of a community that strongly encourages student engagement, fellow students' well-being, and quality of studies. She took the initiative to join the BA & Sociology Union Board, where she manages multiple events, engaging students socially and academically. Nanna is passionate about constantly being in motion, so to broaden her horizon and expand her professional network, she also joined MarketingLab as an Event Manager. While coordinating events with various organisations, she equips students with knowledge and experience, extending beyond a traditional curriculum. MarketingLab has relations with local and global companies, providing students with industry insights, practical skills, and competencies while bridging the gap between theory and practice. Nanna's team connects students with industry leaders, introducing them to the job market. She thrives on being part of an organisation run by passionate, like-minded peers that connect students to 'the real world'.

Student citizenship points

Nanna also mentions that at CBS, Student Citizenship Points are essential if students want to pursue a university exchange in the fifth semester. For each organisation or activity students participate in, student citizenship improves with points that can only be obtained during the first two semesters. In addition, CBS and partner universities rely heavily on student engagement, so nominated candidates with high points will be advantageous to pursue an exchange.

Student advice

Nanna shares some final takeaways for future university students.

Engage yourself: Join a student organisation and take the opportunity to get involved in the community. There is no need to start big. It is not a 'go big or go home thing'- follow your passion. With so many organisations, you are bound to find something you enjoy.

Embrace leadership: It is through trial and error that we learn best. Test out propositions, how people respond and identify what works best for your team. I work on my own leadership skills while figuring out my leadership style. We learn together and from each other in an environment that encourages growth, which may increase your eligibility for the job market.

Take initiative: If there was one thing I learned when starting university, it was the fact that nothing is handed to you on a silver platter – this is how 'the real world' works. So if you want it, work for it. By joining a community of like-minded students, you evolve and grow by taking responsibility for yourself, projects, and the people around you.

"Joining SOC Union and MarketingLab has allowed me to broaden my professional network. Working closely with industry leaders and specialists has opened countless opportunities for my personal career. Most notably is my beloved student job. I currently work at Hedvig, a new generation of insurance, where we collectively work to disrupt an old, dusty industry. As part of a team of three, I work to market and promote Hedvig on the Danish market. Something which I am very proud and fond of. Through a podcast episode Hedvig did with MarketingLab, I became aware of their existence, got to know the team, and was later hired. Networking is great, especially when it happens at such an early stage in your career. MarketingLab has allowed me to work alongside professionals from Arla, Nielsen, Hedvig, Temply, and L'Oréal, who all have different stories and various takes on how their 'real world' functions and operates." - Nanna Larsson
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