There it is! The North Campus Building – Home to the Faculty of Information & Media Studies. Basically, it’ll be a key fixture in the next 2.5 years of my life as I undertake my Masters of Library Science degree part-time at UWO.
Today was my orientation day. I woke up feeling nervous and excited, but happy to start this next chapter. Due to careful planning and a pre-visit, I planned my route and knew where I was going to park and how I would get from the parking lot to the North Campus building. Once I got inside, that’s when it all became a bit more real.
I headed to a seat (on the right side of the lecture hall so that I could have an aisle seat with a left-handed desk, of course) in a prime location and made myself comfortable for the fifteen minutes until the day officially started. During this time, I was shaky with nerves and jitters in anticipation of the unknown. Like I said, this is when the fact that I am now a grad student really sank in and I became fully aware of what I am challenging myself to complete. All I hope is that I can keep all the metaphorical balls in the air – school, assignments, work, family, social life etc.
The orientation presentations themselves were composed of faculty introducing themselves, learning a bit more about the program and graduate life, as well as the services and resources available to us. There were also some presentations about student clubs, which I may consider joining one or two library-related student groups depending on what time I have. We also were offered a social time for coffee, timbits and fruit, as well as a chance to mingle with other students. This is where I met some nice people, who shall remain nameless right now, but let’s just say they were very nice and it was nice to not spend all of orientation day alone! haha. We also were given a tour of the Grad Resource Centre, which could be a very popular study spot, and had photos taken for the FIMS database. MLIS orientation officially ended at 1 pm.
At this time myself and a couple others made our way to the Western Student Services building to get our Western Student Cards….now, this was an ordeal. I’m not sure if the staff taking photos were just having a bad day or were hungry or what (I’d like to give them the benefit of the doubt) but they had ZERO patience with us new students. First of all, this process of getting a student card is a lot more complicated than it was at Brock. It’s practically a government-style type office where anything you want to do, you take a different number for and then letters and numbers get called out that correspond to tickets for different services. Talk about confusing for someone not sure what they are doing! A bunch of us with tickets to have our photo taken were waiting in a line and someone says in a not so nice tone that we don’t need to line up, and gets a bit snarky. I told her that she should explain the situation more properly because most of us are new to campus etc. She claims she made an announcement before. Well hello?! You have new people coming in to the building one after the other. Those who just came in aren’t going to know what you said 10 minutes ago! Anyways, she was not impressed and I mean I’m not perfect at customer service, I have my moments too but seriously, have some patience with new students ESPECIALLY during orientation weeks.
Anyways, we finally got our student cards (which none of us were pleased with) and I ran a couple other errands and was back to my car by 4 pm feeling brain dead and hungry.
Western is definitely a nice looking campus, and it was a beautiful sunny day which helped but it is a lot bigger and more confusing than Brock. I am glad that most of my activities will take place in the North Campus Building. Although, I do plan to explore other parts on campus at some point. It’s always good to know where things are!
My classes start next week – both of my courses are on Wednesday so it means I only have to make one trip in to London per week but I have a feeling I’m going to be wanting and maybe needing to be on campus more to complete assignments and meet with groups. We’ll just have to see how it all goes. I just hope that I can balance everything and that I really want to take advantage of opportunities and open doors. I want to meet new people and challenge myself to be more outgoing than I was during my undergrad at Brock. I’m ready to work hard and I’m motivated to succeed. And I’m glad to have a blog space to share my ups and downs of this era too and reflect on what happens.
So, goodbye Brock, hello Western – let’s see what you have to offer!