In particular, we focused on the mechanics behind delivering a presentation. Barbara introduced the topic by taking the floor and giving examples of effective and ineffective body language, highlighting the importance of not merely content, but also delivery. With precise gestures and a natural, but deliberate, rhythm and cadence, she demonstrated how to engage and captivate an audience.
Following this, each of us gave a five minute presentation as an update on the progress of our research thus far. I must say, if Wednesday's presentations were any indication, we're going to be a polished and persuasive bunch at CSW! Despite limitations on preparatory time, I feel as if the presentations I watched were eloquent, well executed, and, perhaps most importantly, clear of purpose.
Another key element of our meeting included reviewing proper practice in networking at an event like CSW. Anise spoke to the haphazardness that is often characteristic of UN-organized events and that we shouldn't be taken aback by empty cafeterias, informal dress, and a general informality. In addition to that, other participants highlighted the cultural norms behind varying methods of giving and receiving business cards. A previous year's fellow encouraged us to take chances and reach out to people whenever possible--even suggesting sitting down at a table of strangers for lunch and seeing what happens.
Needless to say, finally solidifying and speaking about these elements of the CSW Fellowship experience have raised my levels of excitement and anticipation for the event itself. I think I speak for all of us when I say that one of the most important elements of this experience may very well be the connections we make with other advocates for gender equality and women's rights around the world.
As Jeff said, at the end of CSW we shouldn't have any business cards left. Let's see if we can make that happen!