Bella Dela Cruz is a third-year Commerce/ Economics student and has been part of 180DC for a year, having initially been a Project Consultant during PC2 of 2019. As the current Events Director, Bella is responsible for delivering a range of professional and social events that provide members with a platform to develop their skills whilst creating a positive social impact.
Read on to learn more about her role as an Events Director and the challenges she's faced along the way!
1. What does your role as an Events Director entail?
As an Events Director, I am responsible for collaborating with Directors and the Executive Team to design new and creative experiences for students, manage the operational and logistical plans for events and promote new initiatives, whilst reflecting 180DC's main mission of creating a lasting social impact.
2. Why was the role of an events director appealing to you?
The role of an Events Director was appealing as I was grateful and intrigued by the hard work being put into 180DC's high-quality events. As a result, I wanted to learn a bit more about what happened behind the scenes, which motivated me to give back to the community like how they did for me.
I was eager to challenge myself to strengthen my skills and learn from like-minded individuals within a talented community. I also looked forward to working with clients and firms to deliver professional conferences which allowed me to gain valuable insights into the consulting industry.
However, it was really the dynamic and creative nature of being an Events Director that brought me over. The role allows me to engage and collaborate with Project Consultants, Project Leaders, Consulting Directors, the Operations Teams and the Execs to provide highly-requested initiatives. I can say that being an Events Director has been very worthwhile as it's created opportunities for members to develop themselves both personally and professionally.
3. How have you tried to distinguish 180DC's events from those of other societies?
Our events are designed to provide students with valuable experiences, whether this may be via a consulting methodology workshop, case cracks or mock interviews. Moreover, we believe that every student at UNSW is brimming with talent and skills that are just waiting to be practiced! Hence, we allow them to practically apply these when working with real clients in the social impact sector allowing them to further hone their skills ready for the workforce in future.
Additionally, we aim to provide students who are interested in consulting with an opportunity to further enhance their understanding of the industry and see whether this is indeed an avenue they see themselves working in by collaborating with consulting firms such as Bain, Mckinsey and BCG whilst further expanding their networking nexus.
Lastly, We definitely try to distinguish 180DC’s events by passionately striving towards our mission at the heart of every event, to make a lasting social impact. We do this by collaborating with social impact organisations in which we’ll actually be launching our 'Social Impact Panel + Mini Case' with Homelessness NSW, soon so stay tuned!
4. How has the Events Portfolio run its events amid COVID-19?
2020 is definitely the year of unprecedented surprises, and has ultimately shaped the events we’ve run so far. One of them was the 'Social Impact Case Crack' which was in collaboration with the UNSW Business School, where individuals were to solve a case with their team and present their solutions to the board.
This was the very first online case crack 180DC has ever held, making it a challenging yet exciting initiative to deliver, especially since it gained a lot more traction than initially expected. Of course being online would change the nature of the event but I believe the value of the event was definitely uncompromised coming out even stronger with many fortuitous advantages.
How it worked
Teams were allocated into breakout rooms via Zoom to collaborate and break down the case. Since it was on Zoom, teams were able to instantaneously ask for help, being very critical during time constrained cases.
Once time was up, everyone was placed into their respective streams to present their findings to the board. The quality of their answers were very impressive especially considering their given time frame.
Directly after, the judges provided everyone with constructive feedback on how to improve their strategies and problem solving skills to enhance their performances in future. People were also able to directly message the judges asking for instant tailored feedback which definitely came as an advantage with being online.
After engaging with fellow attendees on why they attended they claimed that it was due to the easy access of being online, especially since it was a quick event in which they were able to gain an invaluable practical experience.
Running this event has definitely allowed us to gain greater insight into the diversity of events we can run in the future. This has definitely opened a lot more opportunities where hopefully we can run an amalgamation of both online and in real life events in order to cater to all audiences.
5. What has been your most memorable experience with 180DC?
My most memorable experience with 180DC was definitely the Hoodie delivery! I’ve always wanted to design and help organise a hoodie day since first year, and 180DC is always very supportive of you trying out your own initiatives. It was so wonderful to see my designs come to life and to see the reactions of everyone when they were delivered. We also aimed to generate greater awareness to the systemic injustices so prevalent within our contemporary society, encouraging everyone to take a stand and take action whenever they can by donating all our proceeds to a fundraiser supporting the 'Black Lives Matter' movement.
6. Do you have any words of wisdom for those looking to become Events Directors with 180DC in 2021?
Endeavour to what you’re passionate about and make the most of your amazing team!
The team is often very supportive of allowing you to explore your creative aspirations and often turn ideas into reality. This is what happened with me and #my180project, allowing everyone to gain a greater understanding of the truly amazing work all our Consultants do!
Moreover, the Operations Team often works very closely so you often have a lot of freedom to help out in any projects that you’re interested in. That being said, definitely don’t be afraid to reach out because more often than not people are often more than happy to help out.