As a first year, it may feel difficult to find a purpose in university and to step out of your comfort zone to try new things, but I assure you, it is completely worth it. I have always been passionate about working with others for a greater purpose and when I was given the opportunity to attend ESSCO’s First Year Integration Conference (FYIC), I was ecstatic knowing I would be able to learn a lot that would help me contribute to McMaster’s Engineering Society.
Over the course of three days I was immersed into a welcoming and energetic environment where I was not afraid to be myself and to meet and connect with others that were just like me. I shared a room with three other engineering students from different universities and was able to learn about their respective engineering societies and found it interesting how similar some of the events hosted are to the ones that we host at McMaster. Some events that the other universities hosted were different to the ones hosted at McMaster, and that opened my mind to endless possibilities of the future of events in the MES.
The three days at the conference were designed to give us time to meet others as well as learn about various important topics through presentations and workshops. Although there were many interesting speakers that had thought provoking presentations, the one that I enjoyed the most was a presentation followed by a workshop about event planning. I have always been interested in creating events and games that allowed people to come together to have fun and enjoy themselves, and the presentation gave me the blueprint to doing exactly that. I’ve always felt that as a first year I wouldn’t have the power to run an event or to create something myself, but over the weekend, I learnt about how everyone has to start somewhere and those that have experience are always happy to help!
The conference as a whole was one of my best university experiences to date. I enjoyed learning about ESSCO and was very inspired seeing students that were once in my shoes reaching new heights and giving back to first year students. I have always preached the importance of getting involved in university and would highly suggest conferences and engineering events to first years. It always seems difficult to take a risk and try something new, but the FYIC was the perfect example as to how stepping out of your comfort zone could lead to forming a bond with new people, learning new things and creating memories that will last forever!
Written by: Yuvraj Randhawa
Edited by: Rica Yacon