As a freshman, life on campus can be fraught with challenges. It seems that no freshie can escape the works – from being doe-eyed “lost sheep” to thriving senior as he/she progresses to the next term. It is a checklist of items to accomplish before levelling up.
Here is what the checklist may look like:
#1 Social list
#1.a. New IG followers
#1.b. Telegram channels to join
#1.c. People to add to my chat
#1.d. Study buddies
#1.e. CCA buddies
#1.f. People I want to be seen with
#1.g. …and the list goes on
#2 Campus navigation – deciphering classroom codes and how they are mapped on campus grounds, where to find food, where to find Starbucks (this is also food).
#3 School stuff – how to select my classes, how to use e-learning resources, how to get hold of my lecturers, how to get hold of support staff.
This year, our freshmen orientation has gone virtual! Through it, freshies got the download on a comprehensive series of resources and support available to help them get off to a successful start in school.
Conducted by the SIM-UoL Student Representative Council (SRC), the three-hour orientation session was not just a yawn-inducing info-session, but one filled with fun and laughter. Freshies were randomly assigned to different breakout rooms where they played ice breakers and scavenger hunt led by Group Leaders (GLs) (Item #1 on checklist, checked). The winning groups received ever-useful Grab vouchers! That was not all. Seniors and alumni lovingly carved out time from their busy schedule to share about their learning experiences, favourite campus facilities and words of encouragements to their juniors. #GDLL
Now, let us hear what some of our freshies have to say:
Jegatheesan Sudharsaan (BSc Data Science and Business Analytics): “It was better than I expected! All of the GLs and EXCOs were friendly. Through this freshmen orientation, it helped me recognize some of my fellow peers that I will be taking the course with for the next few years and I even got some of my senior’s contacts who can help me out in the future.”
Neo Shing Yee (BSc Economics and Finance): “Orientation was Interesting and interactive. The GLs were really nice and helpful. I feel more comfortable than when I first started.”
Eunice Lim (BSc Management and Digital Innovation): “This orientation was not as awkward/boring as I initially thought! The GLs were nice and helpful as they even helped to create a chat group for us to clear our doubts.”
Ang Wei Ting (BSc Management and Digital Innovation): ”The whole process was very interesting and the games were very creative even though limited resources were available on the online platform. Interaction with seniors and an understanding of SIM facilities and student life were some of the benefits from this orientation.”
- Joanne Tan is a Programme Executive at Singapore Institute of Management.