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!

Francesca Zorcolo at Agora Cagliari 2014
Francesca Zor­co­lo at Ago­ra Cagliari 2014

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.

Net­com team 17–18

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.

Zorci and her pre-predecessor Lisa Gregis during the Eurotrip at NWM Cagliari 2016
Zor­ci and her pre-pre­de­ces­sor Lisa Greg­is dur­ing the Eurotrip at NWM Cagliari 2016

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.

The many faces of Francesca Zorcolo: at Agora Chisinau 2016
The many faces of Francesca Zor­co­lo: at Ago­ra Chisin­au 2016

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.

Back in Agora Enschede 2017, when Zorci was Subcommissioner...
Back in Ago­ra Enschede 2017, when Zor­ci was Sub­com­mis­sion­er…

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…

Zorci graduated last December! Right on time for her Netcom task!
Zor­ci grad­u­at­ed last Decem­ber! Right on time for her Net­com task!

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.

Cheese is never missing in Zorci's fridge.
Cheese is nev­er miss­ing in Zorci’s fridge.

GT: What hob­bies do you have aside from AEGEE?
Francesca: I think bas­ket­ball is the biggest one.

GT: Please com­plete the sen­tence: “AEGEE is…
Francesca: …fam­i­ly”

GT: What is your favourite drink?
Francesca: Mir­to, Ouzo and Sopli­ca.

GT: What’s nev­er miss­ing in your fridge?
Francesca: Cheese.

GT: How would you describe your­self with five key­words?
Francesca: Cre­ative. Emo­tion­al. Pas­sion­ate. Ener­getic. Queer.