Looking for simple, inexpensive ways to keep members engaged in a virtual world? Here’s one solution.
How does it work? Recognising that its members were lonelier and more isolated than ever without the typical pathways to interact with colleagues at in-person meetings—an ongoing issue—the Council on Undergraduate Research established “CUR Conversations,” a low-cost way for members to connect on a video calling platform.
CUR sends out an email inviting members of its community to get together and share ideas for an hour on the video calls. Any member can propose a topic for the call, which is limited to a specific number of people.
Why is it effective? Members can join the casual forums to discuss hot topics, issues they are struggling with, success stories, solutions, and more. The calls often bring together members who don’t already know each other, which helps them widen their circle and build bonds with new people in a virtual world, despite the lack of face-to-face events.
What’s the benefit? “We don’t have to develop any content, and it’s not a heavy lift for us, but members are getting a lot of value out of being able to connect with their colleagues,” says Lindsay Currie, CAE, CUR’s executive officer.
LISA BOYLAN - Lisa Boylan is a senior editor of Associations Now.