- Sunny Wang
- Dec 6, 2018
It’s true―building a life for yourself at Western can be decidedly different from all that you have known. The transition from high school to university is commonly viewed as the pinnacle of “finding your place”, so here are plenty of tips that can help ease the process.
Take advantage of O-Week
Western has one of the most unique, action-packed Orientation Weeks of any Canadian university. With activities spanning from residence rallies to EDM concerts, volunteer trips, and carnivals, there is something for everyone to enjoy! Be sure to participate in as many activities as you can, as they are designed to allow you to meet a large number of people within a short amount of time. To emphasize this point, many of the individuals who I now consider my closest friends were introduced to me during O-Week―a testament to the value of Western’s orientation programming in easing you into university. Plus, O-Week is also great for introducing you to Western’s gorgeous campus. This will be your home for the next four years, after all, so remember to take advantage of all that the university has to offer.
It goes without saying: two of the best things about Western are the active student body and robust extracurricular opportunities. During O-Week, incoming students are exposed to more than 200+ clubs at the annual USC Club Fair, where club executives are given the opportunity to set up booths and market themselves. At its core, getting involved on campus or within the city of London is extremely helpful in finding your place at Western. Not only will you be connected with a diverse array of like-minded people, but you will also have access to activities and events that cater to your personal interests (i.e. business, music, science, athletics, and more!).
Keeping the requirements of the Ivey HBA program in mind, staying involved is also essential for maintaining your AEO status. While there are no strict requirements for which activities you can pursue, it’s recommended that you select three activities that demonstrate your passion, initiative, and leadership.
Take advantage of mentorship programs, upper year students, and professors
At Western, something that is often overlooked is the extensive network of resources available to new and prospective students. Starting from day one, students are paired with Residence, Faculty, or Off Campus Sophs―upper-year students who serve as mentors throughout first year. Formal mentorship programs such as the Leadership and Academic Mentorship Program (LAMP), which is facilitated through The Student Success Center, or business-specific initiatives such as The Pre-Business Students’ Network (PBSN) Member’s Network Program, also exist in abundance. Apart from formal programs, Western’s student body also possesses a culture of openness. Upper-years are rarely unwilling to offer advice, and are transparent in the way they interact with first and second year students. Lastly, students are always able to turn to professors, TAs, or administrative staff―all of whom offer an incredible foundation of support.
Maintain a balanced lifestyle
At the end of the day, successfully transitioning into university depends largely on your ability to adapt to the rigorous demands of academics, extracurriculars, and personal relationships. Maintaining a routine that mirrors what you were accustomed to at home (i.e. three meals a day, getting adequate sleep, and leaving time for yourself and friends) is essential―perhaps even more so as we approach the start of exam season. Remember: maintaining both balance and health is always an individual choice, so remember to take advantage of all the resources and facilities that Western has to offer!