Let’s face it, University is a new environment. It’s like starting a new job or moving to a new country. Personally speaking, orientation really put everything into perspective for me. Despite having an early start at University, (I started school in May not September,) you can still be left with many questions. It’s another thing to hear of all the resources, but how do you access them? Just as much as I wanted to attend Frosh Week, being a mature student I didn’t have the luxury of being able to book time off work, so even if you’re not able to attend Frosh Week; every student should definitely make it a point to attend Academic Orientation. This year the Academic Orientation was on September 5th from 9 a.m. – 3:30 p.m., so I made sure to book this day off from any commitments.
The orientation was in McLaughlin College; (this will vary by your college affiliation,) and a light breakfast was served at 8:30 a.m. An e-mail stating the address for the orientation and a schedule of the day’s events was sent to students a few days before. There were signs everywhere leading to the orientation. Upon arrival, all the students were welcomed with a bag which had agendas, coupons to the book store, parking guide, security telephone card, career centre info and the day’s events which were as follows:
9:00 a.m. – 9:45 – Welcome
9:45 –10:15 – Student Success and Time Management
10:15 -10:30 – Break
10:30 – 11:30 – Financial Planning
11:30 – 1:30 – Lunch with Peer Advisor
1:30 – 2:30 – Getting A’s at York
2:30 – 3:15 – College Council and York Federation of Students (YFS)
3:15 – 3:30 – Student Theatre Performance
We were broken in to groups for the bbq lunch with a peer advisor. Peer advisor is an upper year student at York; who advises new students, and can answer questions regarding the university. We were a group of about eight people, the peer advisor gave us their e-mail address so if we have any question during the year we can contact them – this was extremely helpful. Some of the topics discussed were scholarships, volunteer, how to apply for particular programs, time management and where to go for help.
After lunch, we visited the room where the clubs affiliated with our college were set up. I signed up for the WLSSA, which is the Work and Labour Studies Students Association; (Work and Labour Studies is my program.) I am very excited about attending the first event. It’s a great way to meet people, network and learn more about your field.
We were all advised where to turn to for help with any problems that we might encounter during school; whether it be the work load, time management, personal matters and how to succeed, (this advice came from our academic advisor.) I discovered all the cool events that will be happening at York, and also at McLaughlin College; such as weekly coffee talks, lunch with the master, Niagara trip, trip to Montreal and other cool events.
Going to orientation helped me so much in getting to know everyone and where to turn for help. I’m glad that I attended the orientation, and learned so much about the environment which is going to be my second home for the next several years. I want to make the best of my time at York and this was my first step. There are orientations for mature and international students as well so be sure to attend them – you can thank me later! 🙂
By the way, Happy Thanksgiving and Eid Mubarak to all of you!
Safe journey till next time!