It’s Student Volunteering Week! To celebrate we are sharing a special series of blogs that showcase the difference our student members make to our Group and Branch network, as well as highlight our latest volunteering opportunities.
Here’s Avani Keshwalla telling us about her student volunteering experience as part of the BDA North West and North Wales Branch.
Hello, my name is Avani. I am a first-year Nutrition and Dietetics student and I am a new student member of the BDA North West and North Wales Branch committee. I first heard about the branch when the Chair held a session at our university. She explained that they were planning to restart the committee and that there were various roles looking to be filled. After the session, I did some research on the BDA website on how to apply and get involved. I emailed the BDA enquiring about any volunteering opportunities. I heard back a week later that the branch was looking for a student member and they sent details about the role.
After reading the handbook, I knew immediately that I wanted to get involved. I emailed Roy, BDA’s Volunteer Coordinator and I filled out a form with two references. I sent the form along with the references from my university lecturers. After a short wait, I received an email saying I had been accepted onto the committee and was sent a volunteer handbook along with resources about my student role on the committee. A virtual meeting was set up where I had the opportunity to meet the other members and to discuss our roles within the branch. I got stuck in straight away and we were already starting to plan the upcoming networking and CPD event.
I received lots of support throughout the application process and whilst I was nervous, I felt excited to learn more about the committee and to be able to share some ideas.
I am enjoying my role as a student member and it is definitely a great way to meet new people, learn new skills and to represent the dietetic profession. I would encourage other students who are looking to get involved with the BDA to apply for positions at their local Branch as I have found it to be very rewarding!