Welcoming new students: one SSO Orientation leader’s experience

Zehra Haque

Zehra proudly showcasing her Waterloo pride.

For most incoming students, Orientation is their first sense of what student life entails. For upper year students like Zehra Haque, Orientation  looks a little different: it's is about passing on the knowledge and enthusiasm they’ve gained since their first days on campus, and sharing what being a Waterloo Warrior means to them.

This past year, Zehra was a member of the Student Success Office Federation Orientation Committee (SSO FOC). Being a part of the SSO FOC was a chance for her to become an integral part of orchestrating events such as Warrior Welcome.  It was also an opportunity to work with people outside of her faculty and year.

Every volunteer-from the super hyper to the quietly confident-had one thing in common: they wanted to do everything they could to make new students feel welcome and at home on our campus. We have some really intelligent, hard-working, and all around great people on campus but when I see their compassion for other people around them, that's when I really appreciate the beauty of the people at our school.”

Orientation also gives students tools to become leaders on campus, and become more confident in these abilities. As an SSO FOC, Zehra found that the skills she gained as an Orientation leader were valuable to her personal development.

Orientation is a great way to get started in student leadership on campus, as it allows you to meet people from all different areas of campus, whether it is students in residence life, sports, or those passionate about their faculty and getting involved with that.”

Waterloo federation orientation committee members

Members of the FOC show their Warrior spirit.

Orientation isn’t a “one size fits all type” of event, as every volunteer has something exciting to bring to the table. Regardless of how students choose to volunteer, the community Orientation builds on campus is one of friendship and inclusivity.​

Orientation for me is the happiest time on campus. It brings out the friendliest and most compassionate sides of people and it is so great to see so many amazing student leaders work so hard to welcome our new Waterloo Warriors!”

For more information on how to get involved with Orientation, keep an eye out for next year’s positions, which will be posted later this fall in LEADS.

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