Representing the sports associations – what does that mean?
As a Sportkoepel board member your main task evolves around the division of the subsidies offered by the Student Union being allocated via the regulations of the IMA model. Besides that, each board member is responsible for 5 – 6 associations that are consolidated in one sector due to similar attributes they inherit. As an umbrella board however, you will also work on quite some subjects as an entire board or collaborate with other entities within and sometimes even outside of the University of Twente. In some cases, you will have to make use of the skills or knowledge your board members own even if the issue derives from one of the associations you are responsible for or tasks you decided to take up. As a team you will host General Assemblies in which you inform and update your associations but also ask for their input and opinions.
Without you, your association will suffer from major disadvantages because they are relying on a certain level of representation. Every association has to adhere to specific regulations to function properly and needs somebody to speak up for their needs and wishes. Encountering issues your sector will be in need of having a voice on higher levels than the sports boards can provide. Taking up the task of a representative within an umbrella means to be pro-active and contain the feeling of being responsible to some extent. Nevertheless, you will realize that many people are willing to give you the support you need and explain topics that are rather unclear to you.
Below you can find an overview about the most important subjects and institutions you would be involved with or responsible for during your board year:
· Adjustments in the IMA-model, member counting & subsidy talks with associations
· Analysis, board discussions, settlements, division among associations, allocating bufferfonds
· Problems occurring regarding Instruction (trainers), material or accommodation
· Mediating between sports associations, the Sports Centre and the Student Union
· Special cases involving associations that differ every year
· Do-Group division; GNSK participation
· Statutes, House regulations, Housesponsor-contracts, Afsprakendocumenten
· Mainly: Sports Centre employees, sports boards, Student Union
· FOBOS Committee
· Sportsday Committee
· Advisory Council (RvA/CvA)
· SSN (Studentensport Nederland)
· Other umbrellas of the UT (mainly cultural)
Subjects we additionally have been involved in 2018-2019:
· GNSK Committee 2020
· Taking part in Association Weekend Committee
· Vision Sport
· Persons of trust in Sector Sport
· Topvorm Twente (health project)
· House-style, Cooperate Identity
· Awareness about the Sportkoepel
· Improvement of transmission phases between Sportkoepel boards
· Restructuring of the umbrella
(These are things you might not be concerned with in your board year)
From curiosity to passion
A story of a Greenhorn representing Sports Sector 3
What does it mean to me to be a Sportkoepel board member? Never in my life before have I, my personal expenses excluded, really been involved in financial affairs. Numbers did not mean a lot to me and neither did rules, regulations, contracts and … I would not say that these things were irrelevant for me, but I always looked at them from an individual perspective while avoiding illegal activities, sticking to agreements and keeping my own finances in order to not end up completely lost and broke. I considered consequences to be something personal. I eat your cookie without asking, which might result in you never voluntarily sharing your precious snacks with me anymore. Or I help you with deliberating your backyard from evil Unkraut? Whereas you show me how to fix my bike after I tragically crashed into a traffic light. In both cases I have been the one taking action but only in the second case the outcome is sustainable and you as well as me were able to enhance our performance potential.
Consequences and outcomes of certain actions were always something that I considered a very personal thing. During this year I realized on an organizational level you can find similar phenomena. Sure, I was aware that every organization is affected by certain factors in terms of performance and financial health. However, to which extend policy is influenced by single voices as well as huge groups, how one single component among many can affect the outcome of an entire financial model, the change one contract alone can bring and what happens when one party does not adhere it, was rather obscure to me. I did not put a lot of thought into cooperation and interference of organizations leading to positive results or tremendous problems. Until the moment of becoming a board member I studied Communication Science for one year but only amidst all this I got to see what damage miscommunication can actually cause even though I heard about these issues in theory dozens of times already.
On top of this I had barely any knowledge about associations, the Sportscentrum, the Student Union or how these entities collaborate on or impact each other’s decisions. To be completely honest, I did not even know that the Sportkoepel exists until I got to hear that the board of 2017-2018 was searching for a candidate who is willing to represent Sector 3. I cannot really name the reason why all these topics and correlations never touched me before I joined the Sportkoepel board, maybe due to laziness, ignorance or simply because of the circumstances around me that never triggered the urge to be concerned with the beforementioned subjects.
Now you might be wondering why a person like me would ever dedicate an entire year to all these things without the pre-experience of a board year at a sports association or inheriting other considerable useful skills. Good question. Take a drop of ‘overestimating’ the own abilities, a spoon full of feeling responsible to fill an open spot, a hand-full of interest and passion for physical activity and a 1l bottle full of curiosity for everything new…and there you have a cocktail for a somehow sufficient candidate.
On hindsight I would not have evaluated myself suitable for this job but also did not regret a single minute spent with the matters of the sports umbrella. With the understanding and support of my board members I did not only grow into my task but most importantly grew with it. Bringing a lot of different a lot of different perspectives, skills and most certainly knowledge they carried me along, inspiring me on different levels.
Nobody can take away the diverse spectrum of small aspects that I picked up during this one-year journey in the world of sports and the kind of tunnel-vision I owned got broadened tremendously. I hope that the contacts I gathered will help me during my following years at the UT and that the friends I gained will remain for live. In case anybody would have asked me a year ago I would not have seen myself feeling so attached to six associations and the sector itself. If I could do the same year all over again the only thing I would have done differently, is investing more time and diving deeper into the topic.
I believe that all you have to do to find out whether you are a good fit for this task is adding some pre-experience in a Sportsboard, at least some understanding about the IMA model, insights into the correlations of organs within the Sector Sport and feel welcome to tell us about you!