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The Value of Vounteering

As someone who is naturally introverted, sometimes volunteering for events can bring anxiety, but at the same time, it is exciting and I know the value that the event brings. This is what happened when I volunteered for the WI SHRM HR Games. This was my first time volunteering to be part of the games and, in the end, I think I took as much out of the games as the students did, maybe more. Not only was it a tremendous amount of fun, but it was a great refresher on a number of HR topics.

CVSHRM and WISHRM offer a number of tools and resources to help our student members make that leap into the professional world and help them to be successful. One of these opportunities is the HR Games, which are coordinated by WISHRM. The HR Games is a Jeopardy-style competition using categories of human resources related knowledge with teams of students from throughout Wisconsin competing against each other in multiple rounds. The HR Games are held annually and float to various locations throughout the state, relying on colleges to volunteer their space and time. This year, on March 2nd and 3rd, the HR Games were held at the Western Technical College campus in La Crosse. The games included 225 questions in total between the rounds and covered many HR topics and ranging in difficulty.

This yearís competition had 22 participating teams with a strong local presence from both UW-Stout and UWEC. In total, the two universities sent 7 teams. Additionally, several Chippewa Valley SHRM board members volunteered their time to help facilitate this event. We would like to extend a special thank you to Jen Fetherston, Tabitha Newton, and Chippewa Valley SHRMís president, Tanya Hubanks who serves an additional role on the WISHRM State Board as the College Relations Director and was tasked with coordinating and planning this yearís event.

This yearís event began on Friday evening and the teams participated in five rounds. For each round, two teams would compete head-to-head for points that would contribute to their overall final ranking. There were a number of classrooms set up for the competition with 3-4 volunteers in each room including a presenter, judge, timekeeper and matrix manager. I was thrilled to see such positive interactions among the different teams. Although they were competing against each other, there was lots of laughing and conversation. By the end of the night, the teams had dwindled down to the top four. Of the top four teams, one was from UW-Eau Claire (the Pay Rollers), two were from Western Technical, and one was from Blackhawk Technical. In speaking with students, the questions were challenging and the competition was tough, but the experience had a tremendous value even if they didnít make it to the finals.

Saturday was the finals and included a number of speakers, including Tabitha Newton, the CVSHRM College Relations coordinator for UW-Eau Claire, who was part of an open forum panel presentation. Many teams may not have made it to the finals, but there was quite a few who stuck around for day two to watch the finals and see the presenters. Ultimately, the two Western Technical teams took first and second place, Blackhawk Technical took third place, and the UWEC Pay Rollers took fourth.

For anyone that may have been on the fence about volunteering for the event or looking for another way to be involved, I highly recommend that you volunteer next year. It was well worth my time and it was a great deal of fun! Not to mention that I was lucky enough to meet many great current and future HR professionals from around the state and across multiple industries, many of which I continue to be in contact with and include in my arsenal of HR experts.

by Jayme DeYot, Volunteer

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