Last Saturday, i attended what i hope was my last PSG Committee meeting. Andreas had graduated two years ago and it’s time I allow new blood to take over. It was gratifying to have served three years in what i thought would be a one year tenure. It’s my hope that during my service to the committee, I have made a difference and contributed to making the PSG more vibrant.
Twelve years ago while still working at ICI, I had also served in another committee. Together with a few other colleagues, we were members of OCCA (Oil, Colour and Chemical Assn), an association for professionals working in the ink and paint industries. ICI, other than being a prominant paint manufacturer, was also an upstream supplier of many ingredients to the industry. I was selling acrylic products and being a member brought me closer to my customers, who were ink and paint manufacuturers. Of course, it also brought me into contact with my competitors and other suppliers, many of whom were from my NUS Chemistry Faculty.
Like the PSG, OCCA also organized talks and outings, mainly in the professional capacity, to introduce new technologies and products to the end-users. Occasionally, we also organized wine appreciation, visit to Tiger Brewery and JB seafood.
I’m usually very non-discreet, preferring to remain in the background, and would choose to remain silent during the Q & A sessions. Thus, I was often astonished when my name came up for nomination during election for committee members.
At OCCA, I was a reporter and had to write reports on Singapore Section’s activities and submit to our UK headquarters to be published in OCCA’s monthly journal. It was an easy job and I like seeing my name printed in the journal at the end of my report. (Compare this to the Treasurer, who had to endure lengthy questioning of funds duing AGM.)
The committee had to change every three years and I was given an appreciation pewter plate at the end of three years’ service. Even after the three years, the ex-committee remained close and often met annually for CNY dinner until a few years ago.
Saturday’s PSG brought back memories, when new parents who had volunteered to be in the committee were arrowed into taking up positions in an ad-hoc basis after being ‘identified’ by old members. Many were lost but I applaud them for bravely taking up the positions without much fuss.
It’s not easy getting volunteers, especially to be in a PSG committee. Many who serve in a Professional Association Committee (or even in elite schools PTA) have personal agendas and accrediction that is rewarding for career advancement or others. This is not so for PSG, although I’ve heard of parents who had joined just to make free use of the school facilities like badminton halls. Thus, I have great admiration for my PSG committee colleagues, fathers and mothers alike who, once in office, commit themselves fully without backing out halfway. (Some disappeared half way, citing work and other obligations, leaving the rest of us to do their jobs. But which parents do not have that obligations?)
To my old com colleagues, hooray for you!
To the new com members, you are in a league of extraordinary parents.