Meet the JLC Karlsruhe by Andrej Filipic

We had our first ever article written by the EESTEC International Teams!

Fiest your eyes upon the evolution of our amazing (J)LC and take pride in all the work we have done to climb these heights. We are just starting. EESTEC, Europe, get ready for us! And now I give the word to Andrej Filipic ( hat off).

The Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (KIT) is renown for research opportunities and international programs that attract students from all over the world. In fact, many Nobel prize holders have studied there, as well as, for example, men who have greatly impacted the automotive industry. But it doesn’t just end there. The Schloss Karlsruhe is home to, in my opinion, the currently fastest developing, most growth-oriented and most promising commitment in the whole EESTEC community – JLC Karlsruhe. The reason why we wanted to open this new series of articles with this exact commitment is simple – we feel inspired by their dedication and hard work.

Formed by the current oversight committee member Mihailo-Michael Tosic (known among KIT students as “Mister EESTEC”) in April 2015 and reaching more than eighty members by the end of the year, the commitment was promoted, after only one year of existence, from Observer to Junior Local Committee (JLC) on the last Congress. A few months later they already met the criteria to be promoted to Local Committee – this will happen on the next Congress and we are all eagerly expecting it.

The JLC is now lead by Selina Eckel (Chairwoman), Katarina Dabetic (Vice Chairwoman for External Affairs and Contact Person), Maximilian Schwind (Vice Chairman for Fundraising and Treasurer) and Milena Matejcek (Vice Chairperson for Internal Affairs), a highly motivated team that keeps up the good work Mister EESTEC has started.

Although universities are quite time-demanding, especially prestigious institutes like the KIT, that doesn’t seem to affect these motivated EESTECers too much.

“My experience showed the more you have to do the more you become efficient,” said Selina

You of course need good task division and time management. What also helps is a personality-wise, very colorful international team of people who like contributing each in their own different way – some feel comfortable pitching EESTEC and attracting new members, others prefer to organize logistics, then again others have crazy creative ideas that are balanced by the ones, who are more realistic.

“I learned that working in a such a great team is so much fun and I even got more motivated for my studies – without EESTEC, my studies would be really boring,” added Sabrina Kost Oversight Committee.

JLC Karlsruhe is a great example of what EESTEC is all about: being the bridge between students, universities and the industry. And they do it all amazingly well: on their first workshop Electrify – Mobility of Tomorrow they delivered a perfectly balanced blend of academic excellence about innovative technologies and vivid social evenings. What is more, they did this in collaboration with the most prominent actor in the field of electric automation: Tesla.

“EESTEC has offered such great opportunities for travels, education and meeting new people.
At some point, you realize that you have to give back,” said Katarina

People often join EESTEC because of the opportunities to travel and learn outside the boundaries of what their universities have to offer them. But after a while they end up staying in EESTEC because they get the opportunity to organize events and actively take part in organizational development.

Milena commented: “Organizing our first workshop was one of my best experiences yet. I met so many amazing and inspiring people, had lots of fun and learned a lot.”

Active members get the opportunity to gain skills they will one day use at work – time management, planning events, dealing with business situations, meeting deadlines, working under pressure, teamwork and others.

Katarina sums it up perfectly: “You cannot learn that by just studying for your exams.”

EESTEC is in some ways also a school of life – we learn not to give up when facing obstacles and we learn to learn from our mistakes.

“I learned that you can actually change and improve something, that doing nothing is worse than making a mistake,” said Milena

But in the end, it’s all about human connection – something the stereotypical engineer usually lacks. With all the different but like-minded people you meet, it’s not hard to find someone who’s “your kind of weird”. And you end up having friends everywhere, as Katarina describes it:

“You have a couch to crash on in every part of Europe!”

Are you wondering what’s their secret recipe for always moving forward? Sabrina puts it nicely:  “We always try to improve ourselves by communicating with other LCs and trying to learn from their experience. And of course, we are very organized and always setting new goals!”. Selina added, that what you need are also “big dreams and strong connections between the team members … becoming a family.”

Now they want to give something back to EESTEC, by becoming more and more active on the International level –

“The time is right to inspire other groups with our enthusiasm and energy” said Selina