By Alicia Baertsoen
Communicators in London are fond of trivia, and they are good at it too.
The IABC London Chapter’s Professional Development Committee held their first event, which welcomed all members (and new faces), on Sept. 18. The Brains and Beers Trivia Night was held at the London Brewing Cooperative. Attendees brought their brains and beers at the sold-out event, in hopes of beating the buzzer. A candy and snack bar fueled the teams as they geared up for battle.
The goal was to provide a fun, welcoming atmosphere for current members, perspective members and students currently enrolled in communications-focused programs. The incredible venue and interactive theme allowed for networking with new faces and further bonding within teams.
Teams included professionals across numerous thriving local businesses and many keen students enrolled in the Public Relations program at Western Continuing Studies (WCS).
The IABC London Professional Development Committee, who ran the event, includes directors, Kerri Loudoun and Jenna Fayad, volunteers Katy Boychuk and Maria Galicia, as well as myself, Alicia Baertsoen, Community Liaison.
As a current student in the Public Relations program at WCS, and first-year IABC member and volunteer, the first event was an exciting one. Having the opportunity to plan an event under Loudoun and Fayad’s leadership opened my eyes to how much I can learn from volunteering. My teammates, Boychuk and Galicia, have been on the Professional Development Committee for years. Their passion for IABC London Chapter is contagious and is very encouraging as I begin my journey in the communications field.
The opportunities are endless as a member and volunteer of IABC. It was amazing to see the amount of work that goes in behind the scenes, and the talent this committee possesses.
Not only did we sell-out the event long before Sept. 18, we also received raving reviews on the choice of food, venue, and theme from anonymous attendees.
As Community Liaison, one task I was challenged with was to reach out to businesses in London for in-kind donations for trivia prizes. Being able to stretch yourself professionally and network within the community is a perk of volunteering, especially considering the mentors I have by my side throughout the process.
With more events to come, I look forward to new challenges and further opportunities to meet distinguished communicators in London. I encourage fellow students to get involved – whether it be as a member, volunteer or event attendee. The IABC community will welcome you with open arms and the events will provide the resources you need to begin, continue or further your career in communications.