My co-op term with Alumni Relations

Janelle portrait

At the beginning of my co-op work term with UWaterloo Alumni Relations in May, I had one-on-one meetings with every member of the team. It was a great way to get to know one another, learn about their roles and responsibilities, and it truly made me feel welcomed to the team. There was one recurring theme in these meetings though, and that was the question of “What are you going to do when you graduate?” Potentially the most terrifying question. Current students, you feel me I’m sure.

As a Music and Business student just over half way through her degree, I’ve probably never been more confused in my life. Facebook, Instagram and Twitter are constantly sharing my friends amazing stories of their global adventures, their newly-landed positions in the professional world, or big lifetime events like engagements and marriages. And here I am, yet to make any significant progress on my work term report (Yes, still!). I’ve thought a lot about what I will do in June 2017, when I cross that stage and become a Waterloo Alumnus.

I think my confusion stems from the many options I am entertaining. I’ve considered Teachers College, Masters Programs, Graduate Programs, Certificate Programs, taking time off to travel, and starting full-time work. There is a huge unknown looming in the air, and as an organized person who plans everything well in advance, it’s pretty overwhelming. Regardless of where I find myself in two years, whether it’s in this city or across the world, teaching or singing, marketing or writing, one thing will always remain true, that I am a Waterloo Alumnus. It’s comforting to work in a department of the University that provides graduates with a sense of home; with a sense of community, and connectedness. This is equally as comforting for current students like myself, whose lives are undeniably going to change in a couple years’ time.

janelle's nametagAs the Communication and Marketing Assistant in Alumni Relations, I’ve had the pleasure of working one-on-one with our amazing alumni and sharing their stories. Whether it was through our weekly blog, our monthly e-newsletter, a Facebook post, a tweet or a feature story on our webpage, I was inspired by their successes and reminded of how far a Waterloo degree can take you. As well as its unparalleled impact. Honestly, what better, more reassuring department is there for a young, confused, third-year girl? Alumni Relations is the golden thread that connects our graduates near and far, and showers them with perks, programs and benefits. This is an infinite connection, and take advantage of that!

Throughout the term, I learned that Alumni Relations is ultimately here to support our amazing graduates, and instill in them life-long, black and gold, Warrior pride. I know I’m not an Alumni quite yet, but I look forward to one day being part of the supportive, passionate and driven alumni community, wherever life may take me.  

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