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Going down memory lane… ‘AIESEC UniPort!

11 Nov

aiesec 1AIESEC is an international non-governmental not for profit organization that provides young people with cross-cultural global internship, volunteer opportunities and leadership development experiences on campus. With a focus to empower young people so they can make a positive impact on society.

AIESEC, originally a French acronym for “Association internationale des étudiants en sciences économiques et commerciales”.  Members come from a variety of college majors, not necessarily from an area related to economic or commerce. AIESEC is the global youth network impacting the world through leadership development experiences. AIESEC has been facilitating youth leadership activities as well as international internships & volunteer experiences for over 65 years, developing a global learning environment across 124 countries & territories.

During my school days at The University of Port Harcourt, Rivers State I became an active AIESEC member. At first, I’d reluctantly joined the Karate club (instructed by Ike) who later became a close pal and was nick named “Ike-Kia” (behind him) ‘between my friends and I because all we could remember after the painful kicking practice was the term “KIA”. It was fun while it lasted, but wasn’t enough to keep us busy. So, we all turned to AIESEC where I was nick named, Aiesecer Gansy or Yarinya (Fulani girl).

What we do: We seek to learn from the different ways of life and opinions represented in our multicultural environment. Basically, we’ll hold meetings after lectures in the evening to discuss empowerment, leadership roles and advancement in our chosen career path towards the future. We had trainings in social skills development and building corporate relationship. More like a platform of connection and readiness for the corporate world. We conducted several hands on training and seminars all around other Federal universities and also outside the country.

One of the fun and memorable aspect of AIESEC: Travelling (adventure), Exchange program (connecting) and development of great social skills. Everyone becomes a companion keeper to each other and vice versa with other Aiesecers throughout the country. There’s always a venture to elevate each other through the process of empowerment, enrichment and a stand-by support team work.

I still hold beautiful memories of seminars and conferences at University of Benin, University of Calabar, UNN etc. and best of all in Cameroun. The drive always long and dusty, but with a bus filled with passionate and youthful zeal to see the world, embrace the opportunity and accomplish the great works ahead, we were all determined. You cannot be an introvert or a shy one in AIESEC. You cannot be condescending or arrogant during a presentation. AIESEC is all about your inner capabilities. Being all you can. Being a natural.

So, over the weekend, I had a great pleasure of connecting with my over 17-years-university-days-fellow Uniport and Enugu Aiesec Alumni from all over the world! Thanks to Uniport Local Chapter President (1996) Emeka Isiji – Aiesecer Ecg who created a chat room in what’s app and has received over almost 1000 text responds with pictures of before and after!

To my home AAs: Emeka, Prince Nwolisa and Daisy, Oakman, Gerry, Gen-gen, Lipsy, S & B, Poser, Suleiman, Muyiwa, Nnazzy, Nero, Paulo, Rita, Zainab, Uzo, PYT and more…I salute! O men!

Also to acknowledge Aiesec Alumni from Enugu (our brotherly city) Thanks to – AA Iroko (Henry) and LCP AA Alex! ( AA Iroko, you still look good with or without make up! smiles) whose unbelievable but humorous recall of how their “horrible” stay in ALUU (near Uniport) for a Regional Training Seminar event of almost 17 years has left them with post-traumatic stress and has created a forum of discussion, laughter and entertainment in the chat room. Hmm, Uniport LC, please answer to that! It’s almost 17years now!  Also, Salute to AA Tukor, AA Isi-ukwu, AA Undiga, AA braddy, AA 4cup, AA Afomzy etc.

Again, a big salute to all the Aiesec Alumni in the chat room, thanks for re-inventing our wonderful college days with pictures of empowering meetings, educational trainings on public speaking and developing social skills. Thanks for those days we had to dress formal and prepare our presentation before going into SHELL or WILLBROS to discuss partnership, or when we have to stay longer in a meeting all because a mandate has not been met! Thanks for the seminar that almost didn’t hold, as we were ordered by military men at the border of Cross River state and Cameroun.

Thanks to Aiesecer Rothmans/Nonso and Tinuke for caring for me as I traveled into Cameroun with that very mind-blowing malaria fever! And best of all, thanks for the genuine brotherly and sisterly love showered on each other. Especially between Uniport and Enugu LC.

So… Any AIESECer in the house? ‘AIESECer o men !  ‘Make some noise!

“Osi na nature” = everything from nature! (Drum rolls for group dynamics).

3 hearty salute (gbosas) to our dear brother who’s gone to be with the Lord:

RIP: AA Humpty, may your gentle soul continue to rest in perfect peace.

 

Yinka.

Uniport Aiesec Alumni

logo aiesec

 

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24 responses to “Going down memory lane… ‘AIESEC UniPort!

  1. ekundayotemitope61

    November 22, 2014 at 1:35 am

    See My Oga Dem We Greet O…..

    Like

     
  2. Prince

    November 13, 2014 at 11:38 pm

    Hi Yinka, whao! This your article is quite on point. I was telling a friend the other day that ‘when you make friends in your college days and you still find them worthy to want to keep in touch 20 years after, then either there is binding fabric that wove you all together or you all just believe in the same cause and that hardly changes’.

    We joined Aiesec originally for fun(but fun is something that you can get anywhere in school briefly or copiously and just move on; however, when we got hooked with Aiesec, we realized that we didn’t just need fun but we found an avenue where we could explore our inner potentials and impact our environment…positively. Aiesec didn’t give us room to check and assess ourselves on whether or not we were good enough for the task ahead, but immediately threw us into practical scenarios where we had to prove our mettle to our mates, show responsibility to sponsors, provide a shoulder to lean on for the those seeking better understanding of their environment; we became role models to colleagues, subjects of envy to our neighbors and most of all we imbibed the very qualities that we needed for the labor market, which was then, just around the corner. Thus we could be calm even when all those around us were yet to understand that a solution was not far off.

    The skills we learned from Aiesec over 20 years ago have guided us in various areas of our endeavors. This is because we learned very early (as college kids) the principles of how to survive in an adult world. While other youths were going home during the holidays we were busy attending seminars…I recall in 1996 when there was a long student’s strike action….all my class mates were at home(jonsin) and we had the West African Management Seminar in Ghana, it finished and the delegates came directly to Abuja for the Aiesec Nigeria Management Development Seminar(ANMADES); we got trained in different topics from Time Management, Business Risks, Personality Assessment, Entrepreneurial skills, etc….when school resumed we(Aiesecers) were miles sharper than our colleagues.
    Wish I could go on but space is limited.
    Yinka, this blog is a wonderful initiative, I wish you more grease to your elbows as you bring wonderful insights into contemporary issues. You are indeed a true Aiesecer and role model.

    Omennnnnnnnnnn!!!!!!!

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    • Anthonia

      November 14, 2014 at 2:17 am

      AIESECer Prince (PH LC POSER)!
      Permit me to order the house (chat room) to stand at attention as we read your comment…
      Beautiful, Outstanding and Pure! (some true confessions might surface soon via Enugu LC after reading this!)
      Well said Prince, that was a very valid point on close knitted relationship of over 20 years, all because we were all like minded and has worked together as a team, and it was so easy to pick up from where we stopped 20 years ago. Like the talk on ALUU (lol), the Harrison Ford issue (lol), everyone praying and wishing AA Luci well as he declared a new baby, chat room giving a moment of silence for our dear lost ones, AA Abuja making contacts to connect younger AIESEcers…and even now, we are all grown and could easily humor each other with our past experiences.
      Our initial motive for joining during our 1st year wasn’t what we bargained for: the seminars, conference, trainings and endless meetings in Choba, Abuja or Delta Park. The TALK…always the speech about empowerment/enrichment/leadership etc…But it all paid off!
      As you mentioned , we learned Survival and Adaptation skills (on and off campus), we learned personality assessment and of course were able to manage our time wisely when school was not in session. The confident smiles on the faces of the graduating AIESEcers from college!
      Thanks for your compliments, Thanks for re-connecting. Thanks for allowing me to write on this.
      Nice picture of you in the chat room…on the oil rig and giving instructions! I hail! (lol)
      Omennnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn!

      Like

       
  3. Rowland Ogbonda (AA Landlord Travel & See)

    November 13, 2014 at 7:48 pm

    Yinka I can relate with your experience even though I was not part of AIESEC 17 yrs ago. My AIESEC journey ended 5 years ago yet it feels like it neva really did. Seems like AIESEC keeps reinventing itself.

    Thanks for sharing your experience and thanks to everyone here for welcoming me to the group. Pls extend an invite to the reunion. Hopefully I’ll bridge the gap between the past and the future. Lol!

    Like

     
    • Anthonia

      November 14, 2014 at 1:23 am

      Hello AIESECer Landlord Travel & See, Thanks for the compliments.
      So good to have you back 🙂
      Once an AIESEer..always a trendsetter!
      Will keep you updated on the upcoming reunion
      Didn’t see your picture in the chat room. or did I miss it?
      Too many texts, pictures etc in the chat room, will look out for you.
      Stay Blessed!
      Yinka ( AIESECer Gansy)

      Like

       
  4. asogwa ahia ifeyinwa

    November 11, 2014 at 10:42 pm

    Omen. Going down memory lane. Ganzy your memory is still very sharp. AIESEC was fun during our school days. I was the shy type but in AIESEC there are no rooms for shyness. I loved the seminars, the parties. AIESEC helped in bringing me out of my shell. I learnt a lot from our interactions. I still apply some of the skills I learnt from aiesec to some issues I come across and they work wonderfully well for me. Great to link up with aiesecers. Glad I was a part of this wonderful group.

    Like

     
    • Anthonia

      November 14, 2014 at 1:15 am

      Thanks Ifeyinwa. So good to hear from you…Been 20 years…wow!
      Yes, I agree with you, AIESEC did help a lot of us with building our self confidence and
      self-motivation to excel in all we do. Thank God for that! LOL!
      ‘saw your recent picture in the chat room, You haven’t changed at all! still beautiful with that mysterious smile 🙂
      Glad to be re-united! Omennnnn!!

      Like

       
  5. Daisy

    November 11, 2014 at 8:26 pm

    Yinka (aka Ganzy),

    This is truly profound and Nostalgic what you have done here… You have made the AIESEC experience feel like yesterday..

    Memories that have turned out so many great men and women of our time…

    Big up to your blog and all the AIESECers in the house

    Gbosa! Gbosa! Gbosa!!!!!

    Daisy

    Like

     
    • Anthonia

      November 11, 2014 at 8:53 pm

      Thanks Daisy,
      Thank God for what we’ve all turned out to be!
      I am so looking forward to the reunion soon, hopefully we can also clarify this ALUU situation and move forward and prove that PH LC PINKS rocks!! LOL.

      AIESECer Gansy (Yinka)

      Like

       
  6. Victor Nosegbe

    November 11, 2014 at 7:18 pm

    Hey Ganzy!!! Great finding and reading your blog post. Your memories are outstanding and brings lots of nostalgic thoughts. Without doubt many of the things we learnt back in the day in AIESEC has helped shape who we are today ( This is more true in my own life experience) and has even influenced my career from Banking to the Development sector.

    Big ups for the blog. I wish you the very best and Gods speed for tomorrow.

    You left out my name anyways…….how can you leave out Agility!!!

    The thing to do?? Tell the folks in the Whatsapp chat room you left Agi out of the list. LOL!!

    Would sure stay turned right here!

    Best

    Victor Nosegbe – Agility

    Like

     
    • Anthonia

      November 11, 2014 at 9:07 pm

      AIESECer Agility – my personal person!! How could I have forgotten? LOL!
      1000 apologies for erasing beautiful memories of 20 years in the making!
      Yes, you are right! AIESEC training has really helped transformed a lot of us, with God’s direction.
      I celebrate your achievements and position and pray God’s protection over you.
      Nice picture on What’s App! LOL.

      AIESECer Gansy! ( Yinka )

      Like

       
  7. AA Topography

    November 11, 2014 at 2:45 pm

    AIESECER Australia in the house!
    Beautiful write up Yarinya
    You still as cute as ever ( 20 years ago)

    Like

     
  8. AA Anointed

    November 11, 2014 at 2:42 pm

    Salutes from France!
    Ms gansy you rock!

    Like

     
    • Anthonia

      November 11, 2014 at 9:10 pm

      Ca va bien? J’Salute!

      AIESECer Gansy ( Yinka)

      Like

       
  9. AA Dee

    November 11, 2014 at 2:41 pm

    Aiesecer O men!
    Salute from Germany.

    Like

     
  10. BJ.

    November 11, 2014 at 2:39 pm

    Yinkaaaaa. You still rock!
    AA Back up.

    Like

     
    • Anthonia

      November 11, 2014 at 9:11 pm

      BJ, following you now… lol!

      Like

       
  11. Henry Ekpemandu (Iroko)

    November 11, 2014 at 9:44 am

    Yinka, great piece!!! Thank you so much for the indepth description of Aiesec, what we did/do & what we stood for. You have digitalised that chat room on your blog in such a fabulous and elaborate way. Thanks for the compliment (blushing) but please don’t believe those ‘bad belle boys’ who were stung by my honesty about Aluu & the resultant PTSD. 🙂

    Looking forward to coming back to be part of any megga reunion planned for 9ja…and I bet Isiji & a host of others all over will also want to be part of it.
    Yinka, once again I say thank you!
    Love you all loads.
    Henry (Aiesecer Corporate Embarrassment) Enugu LC.

    Like

     
    • Anthonia

      November 11, 2014 at 9:28 pm

      AIESECer Henry (Iroko). Thank you. Honestly, based on the facts in the chat room, I feel your pain!
      On behalf of my LC and the traumatic experience you survived at ALUU…19 years ago…
      We would like to host you again in a more pleasant location of your choice.
      Looking forward to the reunion soon with better coordination.
      And PS: Stop showing them the evidence now! LOL!

      Regards.
      AIESECer Gansy (Yinka)

      Like

       
  12. Atinuke

    November 11, 2014 at 5:42 am

    Wow! Yinka, I can’t believe the stuff you remember. Mind blowing, smile inducing, nostalgia bringing = good memories.

    Those were very good quality moulding times. I would relive it in a heartbeat.

    Thanks for taking us back there and well done with your blog. I stay tuned religiously. God speed.

    I will like to be a part of the WhatsApp group. Please find me on Facebook and inbox me a contact number. I can’t find you there.

    Best regards,

    Tinu

    Like

     
    • Anthonia

      November 11, 2014 at 9:42 pm

      Tinuke,

      Hey Girl! miss you lots! miss our AIESEC days more!
      Thank God for where we are now…
      Tell me about it, all those beautiful memories..
      The dog in your compound off campus that understands only ibo….lol
      The landlord’s son that’s always fetching water for us and eyeing you… lol
      The Onne AIESEC beach party and our personal home made beans and bread on the beach, lol
      The night at the border of Cameroun, speaking all the French we could remember…lol
      We definitely need to catch up soon.. a reunion is due, Its 20 years!!
      see you in the chat room soon dear!

      Yinka.

      Like

       

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