By Rachel Antony – The Brock Press
Although Brock University isn’t as populated as other schools, it’s still easy to get lost in, especially if you have somehow found your way into Mackenzie Chown. When I started at Brock,I remember one of the things that I worried about the most was getting lost on campus. I could lie and say it has never happened to me before, but it has– more often than I’d like to admit. Even after being here a whole year, there are still parts of campus that I get confused in and I’m almost positive that it happens to be the case for some of the upper-year students as well.
One of the things that really helped me out as a first year was Smart Start. For a lot of the students that are just starting out in September, though you may have seen Brock one or two times already, seeing the campus the way they show you in Smart Start is definitely well worth it.
Smart Start runs pretty much all summer, every summer. There are many days to choose from to attend and personally I found it extremely worthwhile. Some people are sure that they can find their way around when they need to, or just learn what they need to about the school on their own, but a lot of those people are just putting off what they could already be doing and are missing out on a huge opportunity. Brock campus is still a big place and university can get hard and confusing from time to time (especially at the beginning of any year, let alone your first year). The convenience of Smart Start can’t be seen by everyone, but it’s one of the most important things a Brock student can take part in.
Not only are you shown your way around campus, but the students are informative and explain concepts that are essential to understand before school really starts. It isn’t just any old random campus tour-it’s a student perspective, so as a student, we get to hear what we really want to hear. Since the students are the ones that lead the entire session, it’s easier to relate and build rapport with them too.
One thing that really helped was the step by step tutorial on logging into the student portals. Although it gets less confusing and more natural over time, at first, remembering to log into a couple student portals on a daily basis seemed daunting and even a little bit hard. At Smart Start it’s one of the first things they go over, and they make it look just as easy as it is.
So many people miss out on Smart Start for silly reasons: they run out of time or there are no spots left. Smart Start however is in a lot of ways like investing in your academic future. It mentally prepares you for the beginning of the school year and is also a great way to meet new people. Who knows, the people you meet at Smart Start may even become some of your closest friends.