The first time I saw Francesca Zorcolo, called “Zorci”, was at Agora Cagliari, in 2014. She was sitting on a huge pile of Red Bull cans, which her antenna had fundraised. Zorci was part of the core team of the event and already back then one could see that she was destined for greater things. Two years ago she became President of AEGEE-Cagliari, last year subcommissioner of the NetCom and now, since December, she is Network Commissioner for the famous Rainbow locals. But let’s hear what she has to say for herself!
Golden Times: You have been in Netcom for two months now. How was your start?
Francesca Zorcolo: Great! To be honest, I was a bit scared to be not worthy for the role, but the Netcom Team is simply amazing, we support each other, so I definitely say great!
GT: Why did you choose to candidate for the NetCom?
Francesca: For helping locals. Most of the locals are not aware of what they can do it, how they can shine, so I have candidated to be present for them.
GT: What did you do in AEGEE before joining the NetCom?
Francesca: I was board member of AEGEE-Cagliari for two years and then subcommissioner of my predecessor in the NetCom, Gabriele Scollo.
GT: How well did you know your assigned locals before your term?
Francesca: I had a good knowledge of them, because I have been in touch with the majority of them due to my role as subcommie last year.
GT: What have you been doing to get to know them even better since your term started?
Francesca: I called all of my locals’ board members in December and the beginning of January in order to introduce myself and to collect important data about their needs and plans. Then I created a WhatsApp group with the local presidents. We would like to create more groups in order to connect other board members of the different locals, so we can communicate more easily and they get to know each other better.
GT: What are the main strengths problems of your locals?
Francesca (smiles): All of them are very active at local level and lots of them on the European one, they always look for the best activity to cuddle their members and this is really good – but maybe we could develop common strategies for PR, FR and HR.
GT: Can you name a couple of outstanding locals of yours that can serve as a role model for others in Europe?
Francesca: I would prefer to not nominate a specific ones, but I think lot of them could be a role model for the way they try to improve themselves with new challenging initiatives.
GT: The network is shrinking. Also in your area?
Francesca: In average, I can consider my area an healthy one. On the other hand, it has been a long time since a new contact in my area has been founded, so I would say: yes, maybe.
GT: What kind of plans do you have to reverse the trend?
Francesca: There are lots of former active members that are now in cities where AEGEE doesn’t exist, maybe we could start from there.
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?
Francesca (laughs): Yes! Everything you have mentioned is in my plans, I just add that I would like to create more materials, guidelines, toolkit and tips, so the next members or board members can always check them when it’s needed.
GT: People always talk a lot about antenna criteria reform. Do you have ideas for some alternative better antenna criteria?
Francesca (smiles): As Netcom, we always think about antenna criteria. What I can say is that our association changes very quickly so the criteria should adapt to these changes.
GT: You will organise a Network Meeting soon. Can you tell us more about place, location and topics?
Francesca: The next Network Meeting will be hosted by AEGEE-Catania! I am so proud of them, after such an outstanding Agora I didn’t expect they were ready to apply for another European event so fast! The topic will be the same for each of the Spring Network Meetings and it’s Project Lab: we want to see our members develop their project ideas together.
GT: How and when did you join AEGEE?
Francesca: It’s been four years ago, in a warm February in Cagliari, when a friend of mine told me: “They have Red Bull for free, if you pay the membership card and then steal five Red Bull it’s like you haven’t paid anything!” Here I understood for the first time the power of a good fundraising.
GT: What do you study – and why?
Francesca: I took my Bachelor in Economy and Management last December. Why? Because when I finished high school I didn’t know anything about Economy…
GT: How many international events have you been to so far?
Francesca: About 12.
GT: If you were not in AEGEE, how would your life look like?
Francesca: I really have no idea, I have even some problem to remember how it was before? Have I slept more than five hours per night?
GT: After AEGEE, what will you work later?
Francesca (laughs): “After AEGEE” – ahahahahahahahah!
GT: Are you a party animal?
Francesca: Sometimes! In the past. Now I feel too old and too responsible for being it.
GT: What hobbies do you have aside from AEGEE?
Francesca: I think basketball is the biggest one.
GT: Please complete the sentence: “AEGEE is…
GT: What is your favourite drink?
Francesca: Mirto, Ouzo and Soplica.
GT: What’s never missing in your fridge?
GT: How would you describe yourself with five keywords?
Francesca: Creative. Emotional. Passionate. Energetic. Queer.