Brock is becoming more and more well known for their dedication to experiential learning; the process of learning through experiences, rather than merely in the classroom. My most valuable skills that I gained from my time as a student at Brock University comes from what I learned from my involvement on campus and the connections I made. And if I could go back, I would get involved much sooner. It is important to remember that in our current job market, getting the degree just isn’t enough, and it’s never too early or too late, to get involved during your undergraduate experience. So take advantage of these five tips to help you make the most of your university experience!
- Get involved!
My biggest regret from my undergraduate experience is how long I waited to get heavily involved on campus and throughout the community. As a local, I assumed I already knew enough about Brock and Niagara, but I was so wrong. In my third year I joined the Brock University East African Students’ Association. I not only learned a lot, but I also got to plan and attend awesome events, as well as make some of my closest friends.
- Work/ Volunteer on campus
Again, waiting as long as I did to get involved on campus was a bad move on my part, but once I did I never looked back. Something that almost all students look for are jobs and volunteer opportunities. Take advantage of the fact that Brock has such a high population of student staff, hiring over 1,000 students each year. I’ve volunteered in various places on and off campus including the English Students’ Association and A Safer Brock, and have worked at CareerZone, The Brock Press, The Student Justice Centre, and have had work opportunities with professors. Working on campus is convenient, fun, and gives you great experience. Go to the CareerZone website for on campus job postings.
- Take your work seriously
Many of the assignments you will do won’t seem important when you’re doing them. You’ll think of it as something that simply needs to get done in order to get the grade. But each essay and project that you do can be useful for a portfolio. Some employers will want examples of your work, so it’s always good to keep it handy. Personally, as someone who majored in English Language and Literature, keeping my written work has been incredibly useful for my portfolio. Having these writing samples has helped me immensely, even though while writing them I didn’t think much about it.
- Don’t wait to start networking
A common misconception amongst students is that you can’t start networking until your final years as an undergrad. This is absolutely untrue. Though you might not be able to take certain job or internship opportunities in your first or second year, doesn’t mean that you can’t still build strong connections with certain employers, businesses and professionals. You can do this in many ways, from job shadowing, volunteering and even asking to be mentored by someone who has valuable skills that you wish to acquire.
- Take advantage of the services available to you
As a student you pay into so many services on campus that are there to help you. Make use of them! Whether it be personal counselling, attending workshops, receiving free tutoring, or going to networking events, use them to make your experience even better.
Make the most of your undergraduate experience and stay updated on what is going on on-campus and throughout the community.