Volunteer Spotlight: Ana Luisa Perez, WG'12

Laurie Jensen, Associate Director of Global Clubs, interviewed Ana Luisa Perez, WG'12, for this edition of Volunteer Spotlight. Ana has served on the Committee of the Wharton Club of the United Kingdom since 2020.


LJ: What is your greatest achievement since graduating from Wharton?

AP: My greatest achievement since graduating from Wharton is my family. I had no experience with children prior to having my own. Initially, you learn to change diapers and to cook baby food, but eventually the challenges become greater and you start realizing that raising children is quite similar to running a startup. Like with a startup, your plans and ideas are always challenged by your children, pushing you to think creatively and to not give up as you are fighting for what you care most about in life. 

LJ: What motivated you to start volunteering for Wharton?

AP: I decided to start volunteering with the Wharton Club in the United Kingdom primarily for two reasons: community building and giving back. Almost two years since joining the club, I feel fortunate to have created a network of Wharton alums across Europe and to have been able to support various events and school initiatives.

LJ: Can you describe your role on the volunteer leadership team of the Wharton Club of the UK?

AP: My role with the club is Chief Technology Officer. Therefore, I generally focus on all the club’s technology needs. These include managing the website, communications, business account and virtual meetings. However, the committee does not limit your role to your title, and you can therefore participate in many ways. I am hoping to be able to organize and host a club event in the near future.

LJ: How has the pandemic shaped your experience at the Wharton Club of the UK?

AP: The pandemic brought on many challenges to all, including the Wharton Club of the UK where meetings and events could no longer be held in person. However, the club, under Lloyd Thomas’s leadership, did an incredible job at quickly reinventing itself. It was during this time that I joined the club with the primary focus to support the great number of online events that the club was putting together. It was a great time to join as it was busy and I could immediately add value. And despite the pandemic limiting in-person interaction, the welcoming environment of the committee has allowed me to build friendships with many of its members. 

LJ: What advice would you give to a new club volunteer?

AP: Eagerness to participate and engagement with the club are the two traits that I have seen all club volunteers exhibit and that anyone who joins the club as a volunteer should display. The club does a great job at including volunteers who are not yet sure how they can help but are willing and eager to do so. Through real involvement with the club you can slowly figure out how you can be most helpful to the club’s needs. It is also worthwhile mentioning that others’ willingness to participate means that you will always have someone who is willing to step in to help you whenever needed.