Name: Umut Doğan Bilici
Studies & University: Bachelor’s at the University of Çukurova
Why did you join the Board of Management?
EFPSA is the best place to discover your potential, to connect with people from at least 32 European Countries and furthermore, it provides you the perfect opportunity to improve your organisational skills. During the past years, I realised how big EFPSA is and the surrounding spirit here is truly special. Therefore, I decided that I wanted to continue being a part of the Federation. Working with three great teams (Grants Team, Partnership Team and the Board of Management) was, and still is a great opportunity to maintain my contribution to EFPSA and to learn from it. All in all, I am really happy that I made this decision.
What is the best thing about your position?
I think one of the best things about being the Finance Officer (FO) is being in charge of literally everything that is going on inside the Federation. By being the FO, I have had the opportunity to not just learn about other teams but to actually work with them on various projects. This provided me lots of different perspectives as a person and, also for work-related stuff. And having the monetary power in your hands is probably one of the greatest strengths I ever held. 🙂
Psychology students mostly do not have interests in financial stuff, which makes our Office a distinctive part of the Federation. In addition to that, I adore my teams, like, truly. I am really proud of how professionally we are working here even from a distance. Working with the Grants Team and the Partnership Team will always be among the highlight points of my life. Love you guys!
What is the biggest challenge you had to face with this mandate?
I really want to be honest in this part as I faced the biggest challenge of my life so far. In the first month of my mandate as the Finance Officer, it was so stressful because of an unfortunate experience that was caused due to a strict deadline for a money transfer. Because of some technical issues that I faced regarding the bank account, I wasn’t the same anymore and it caused me so much anxiety. However, I was able to solve the problem in the end and when I did, I felt the power inside of me and saw what I am capable to do. Even though it was a stressful process, it turned out as a good lesson to me that some of the strengths we have are somewhere hidden within ourselves and we are only able to find them by facing challenges. Of course, I was not alone in this, thanks to the other BM members for being there when I needed it.
How did you maintain your EFPSA responsibilities with your other responsibilities?
I always had many responsibilities throughout my life and most of them I had at the same time. So, for me, it wasn’t a new thing to maintain various things at a time. However, it’s not always easy to do it and sometimes it can really get overwhelming. The best way to deal with it is to take some small breaks and get back to work afterward with a settled and fresh mind. I avoid calling someone/myself busy because there are still so many things outside waiting for us to discover them even without us knowing what it is.
As long as you have the motivation, there’s not much you cannot do.
What skills have you acquired during this mandate?
As being said before, finances already require specific interests and it is a never-ending field, so you never stop learning in this position. I really improved my crisis management skills this mandate as there were so many potential urgencies, additionally; you need to be available most of the time. I also got acquainted with different working styles in an intercultural environment like EFPSA.
All in all, I am truly thankful to EFPSA and what it provided me.