Does Celia Riveres ever sleep? Hard to tell. For many peo­ple the new Net­work Com­mis­sion­er embod­ies the AEGEE for­mu­la “work hard, par­ty hard” per­fect­ly. The for­mer Pres­i­dent of AEGEE-Zaragoza is one of four new faces in AEGEE’s most pop­u­lar com­mis­sion: togeth­er with Dominic Dimi­an, Mar­ta Pak and Francesca “Zor­ci” Zor­co­lo she start­ed her term in Decem­ber. The Gold­en Times asked Celia about their plans – and also about her life.

Celia Riveres has high-fly­ing plans

Gold­en Times: You have been in Net­com for two months now. How was your start?
Celia Riveres: The truth is that the begin­ning has gone very, very well! The first con­tact with the locals and with the Net­com­mies has been unbe­liev­able, so I am very hap­py! I mustn’t for­get the group of sub­com­mies that are with me, they are super active peo­ple, they come always up with new ideas – it’s a plea­sure work­ing togeth­er! In short: I can’t com­plain about any­thing, I am sure it’s going to be an amaz­ing year!

GT: Why did you choose to can­di­date for the Net­Com?
Celia: I like to keep in touch with peo­ple, to get involved in new projects, to col­lab­o­rate with oth­er anten­nae and grow togeth­er. I think the Net­work Com­mis­sion can help the locals to get the best of them. I am super hap­py to be in con­tact with so many locals and be able to col­lab­o­rate with them!

Net­com team 2017–2018

GT: What did you do in AEGEE before join­ing the Net­Com?
Celia: In AEGEE-Zaragoza I was Graph­ic Design­er, Human Resources Respon­si­ble and Pres­i­dent. In Euro­pean Bod­ies I was sub­com­mi­sison­er of the Net­work Com­mis­sion­er and worked in dif­fer­ent col­lab­o­ra­tions with the Gen­der Equal­i­ty Inter­est Group and the LGBT+ Inter­est Group.

GT: How well did you know your assigned locals before your term?
Celia: I was lucky to know peo­ple in every local, so I had a great overview before. Also, being sub­com­mis­sion­er dur­ing the last year has helped me a lot to know deeply the dif­fer­ent anten­nae and under­stand how they work and what they do in their locals.

GT: What are you doing now as Net­com mem­ber to get to know them even bet­ter?
Celia: First of all, I have direct con­tact with the boards of all the locals in dif­fer­ent chats, we also do Skypes reg­u­lar­ly to get to know each oth­er bet­ter and see how we can col­lab­o­rate and work togeth­er in the best pos­si­ble way. Also, I’m in dif­fer­ent com­mu­ni­ca­tion chan­nels that also help me to under­stand them bet­ter and keep track of them.

Celia Riveres and her Sub­com­mies

GT: What are the main strengths prob­lems of your locals?
Celia: The main strengths are the good vibes you see among all the locals and the will­ing­ness to car­ry out new projects. These anten­nae are pret­ty well con­nect­ed with each oth­er. The main prob­lem: being in a cor­ner of Europe makes it more chal­leng­ing to col­lab­o­rate with locals from oth­er areas.

GT: Can you name a cou­ple of out­stand­ing locals of yours that can serve as a role mod­el for oth­ers in Europe?
Celia: I think the desire that AEGEE-Mála­ga or AEGEE-Tar­rag­o­na have now to devel­op their anten­nae is undoubt­ed­ly an exam­ple to fol­low!

GT: The net­work is shrink­ing. Also in your area?
Celia: I think that now it’s time to put all our efforts into the Por­tuguese speak­ing locals and estab­lish there new con­tacts. The rest of my area is not shrink­ing. We have the good exam­ple of AEGEE-Mála­ga and AEGEE-Vigo as new locals.

Celia was Pres­i­dent of AEGEE-Zaragoza and joined the advi­so­ry board last autumn.

GT: What oth­er plans do you have for your locals? For exam­ple: encour­age coop­er­a­tion among them, fos­ter twin anten­nae, fos­ter coop­er­a­tion with Euro­pean bod­ies, encour­age them to make more the­mat­ic events or more inter­nal edu­ca­tion?
Celia: The team of sub­com­mies and me are work­ing on the Activ­i­ty Plan now and I can assure you that you will find there many new ideas. We will con­tin­ue with some things from the past such as the recog­ni­tion of good prac­tices with the podi­um of locals of the month or con­nect­ing dif­fer­ent AEGEEans through Con­nect­ing Peo­ple among oth­er projects. One of our fun­da­ments for this year is the trans­paren­cy in the work that we do, the good com­mu­ni­ca­tion with the locals to be able to help them in every­thing pos­si­ble and the phi­los­o­phy of shar­ing best prac­tices — you will see a lot of projects with the pur­pose to to help each oth­er! A lit­tle teas­er: we are orga­niz­ing some­thing the­mat­ic that you are going to love for sure!

GT: Peo­ple talk a lot about anten­na cri­te­ria reforms. Do you have ideas for some alter­na­tive bet­ter anten­na cri­te­ria?
Celia: I just want to com­ment that I think the anten­na cri­te­ria should be con­stant­ly chang­ing to get adapt­ed to the locals and their needs.

Celia was part of the fan­tas­tic organ­is­ing team of EPM Bur­gos in 2015

GT: How and when did you join AEGEE?
Celia: My best friend and cur­rent AEGEE mem­ber went to a Sum­mer Uni­ver­si­ty in 2012 and came back super moti­vat­ed and delight­ed! She was the one who con­vinced me to go the fol­low­ing year to a meet­up in the uni­ver­si­ty about the Sum­mer Uni­ver­si­ties and AEGEE. That sum­mer of 2013 I went to my first Sum­mer Uni­ver­si­ty, and now, I am writ­ing this inter­view five years lat­er!

GT: Nice! So you are already work­ing?
Celia: I stud­ied design engi­neer­ing and a mas­ters in teach­ing for sec­ondary edu­ca­tion. From a very ear­ly age I felt attacked by sci­ences, maths, physics and draw­ing, but I also dis­cov­ered that I am a cre­ative per­son. Try­ing new things, I dis­cov­ered that I also like teach so I stud­ied some­thing that com­bined sci­ence and cre­ativ­i­ty to end up get­ting spe­cial­ized in teach­ing.

GT: What was your best and worst AEGEE expe­ri­ence?
Celia: It’s very dif­fi­cult to name just one good expe­ri­ence, but one of the best for sure has been the Vol­un­teer Sum­mer Uni­ver­si­ty of AEGEE-Zaragoza last year. See­ing the par­tic­i­pants and the peo­ple from the vil­lages so involved in the activ­i­ties we cre­at­ed remind­ed me of the impor­tance of vol­un­teer­ing and how much we can help. The worst expe­ri­ence: maybe some dis­cus­sions due to dif­fer­ents opin­ions, but noth­ing impor­tant. In the end I think the vari­ety of opin­ions is very impor­tant and can help us to devel­op our projects.

The amaz­ing SU of AEGEE-Zaragoza in 2017 was a great expe­ri­ence.

GT: How many inter­na­tion­al events have you been to so far?
Celia (laughs): Mmmm… I dont know If I am able to say a cor­rect num­ber. For sure six Ago­rae, one EPM, four Net­work Meet­ings, five Sum­mer Uni­ver­si­ties – prob­a­bly more than 20.

GT: If you were not in AEGEE, how would your life look like?
Celia: I always like to be involved in new projects and ideas so I guess I would have found a way to keep my life busy with some­thing.

GT: After AEGEE, what will you work lat­er?
Celia: You nev­er know what will hap­pen or when your life after AEGEE appears, but I imag­ine that I will con­tin­ue with my idea of being a teacher in a high­school and occu­py­ing my evenings with projects or oth­er activ­i­ties. I can’t stop doing things!

GT: Are you a par­ty ani­mal?
Celia (laughs): I think so, ask me on Sun­day at 7am…

Celia Riveres is def­i­nite­ly a par­ty ani­mal.

GT: What hob­bies do you have aside from AEGEE?
Celia: I absolute­ly love design and crafts, I real­ly like to do hand­work! Also, I love mak­ing plans with friends and prac­tic­ing sports.

GT: Please com­plete the sen­tence: “AEGEE is…
Celia: …a place to get your mind opened, dis­cov­er your­self, devel­op new skills and meet incred­i­ble peo­ple around Europe.”

Keep an eye on Celia!

GT: What is your favourite drink?
Celia: Vod­ka with Orange, but as I am from AEGEE-Zaragoza I have to name our beloved sexy tequi­la.

GT: What’s nev­er miss­ing in your fridge?
Celia: Ambar beer, which is orig­i­nal from Zaragoza, choco­late and cheese!

GT: How would you describe your­self with five key­words?
Celia: Curi­ous, active, respon­si­ble, hard-work­er and fight­er.


Read also about Dominic Dimian: