Meet your Waterloo O-Week Team

Associate Vice President, Programming: Brooke Abbott

Year & Program: 4th year, Political Science

Describe O-Week using 3 words: impactful, exciting, captivating

Why you think everyone should get involved with O-week: I think that everyone should get involved with O-Week for many reasons! Mainly, O-Week allows you to meet so many people; those who share your interests and will be your friends for life, and those who are in your program and will be your study buddies for the next four years! The connections that your icebreakers help you make during Laurier’s Orientation are irreplaceable and they will shape your whole university experience.

Previous colour team(s) you have been on: I was a Gold Ace in my first year, then an A-Team Executive in my second, and this past year I was the A-Team Coordinator.

Tips for staying productive while at home *or while using an online platform*: The thing that helps me most is to get outside! It’s easy to get ‘cabin-fever’ when you’re working or studying from home, so find a spot to study outside. Whether you grab a spot of shade on your deck or go to an outdoor Starbucks patio, it is way easier to stay productive when you’re not cooped up indoors!

If you could give your first year self one piece of advice, what would it be?: Balance! It’s extremely easy to get wrapped up in your academics and forget about making social connections at school. On the flip side, it’s also easy to forget about academics! Find a strong group of friends in your program to study with, and this will make your experience super enjoyable.

What are you most looking forward to getting back to once campus opens?: I am most looking forward to getting back to hanging out with my friends everyday.

Fun quarantine activity you would recommend trying: https://allbad.cards/ with friends!

A fun fact you love: WLU’s school colours used to be maroon and gold until they replaced the maroon with purple to signify their connection to the University of Western. Our schools ‘broke up’ in 1960, but that’s why we have the lovely purple and gold today!

Favourite at home DIY?: Tie dyeing!!

 

 

 

External Volunteer Liaison: Hanna Lynch

Year & Program: 4th year, Global Studies & Community Engagement

Describe O-week using 3 words: crazy, welcoming, challenging

Why you think everyone should get involved with O-Week: It’s a great way to challenge yourself to get involved, and you meet a lot of really passionate people.

Previous colour team(s) you have been on: Green Renegades, Green Guardians, Gold Infinities.

Tips for staying productive while at home *or while using an online platform*: Schedule breaks and set goals for both daily tasks and weekly tasks; it will help keep you on track and sane. And keep a good supply of snacks handy!

If you could give your first year self one piece of advice, what would it be?: Don’t get so caught up in what you think university should be, just enjoy it for what it is. Also, look beyond where you study, and get to know the city you live in!

What are you most looking forward to getting back to once campus opens?: Chipotle Chicken Sandwiches at Veritas or Franks London Fogs. Also, dance class & intramurals at the AC!

Fun quarantine activity you would recommend trying: Experimenting with making new things at home (i.e. homemade ginger beer or croissants).

A fun fact you love: Otters hold hands while they sleep to keep them from drifting apart!

Favourite at home DIY?: BAKING CROISSANTS!!!!!

 

 

 

Internal Volunteer Liaison: Karenna Lehman

Year & Program: 4th year, Business

Describe O-week using 3 words: exciting, rewarding, inclusive

Why you think everyone should get involved with O-Week: I think everyone should get involved with O-Week because it’s a chance to meet new people, push yourself out of your comfort zone, and further your love for this great school!

Previous colour team(s) you have been on: Blue Legends, Red Riddlers, Red Rivals.

Tips for staying productive while at home *or while using an online platform*: As annoying as it is, make a weekly schedule for yourself to plan out your tasks and ensure that everything is getting done. This helps me stay organized and on top of things!

If you could give your first year self one piece of advice, what would it be?: Enjoy every single moment (even the small things). Not to sound cliche, but the past 3 years have flown by, and I cannot believe that 4th year is here already!

What are you most looking forward to getting back to once campus opens?: Definitely the concourse (for some Starbucks and study sessions) and the AC (for dance classes… shameless plug, check out the Rec Dance Program!!).

Fun quarantine activity you would recommend trying: Would highly recommend getting a quarantine puppy!!

A fun fact you love: Otters hold hands when they’re sleeping so that they don’t drift away, and this just makes my heart happy.

Favourite at home DIY?: 100% bleach dying… I am a shameless owner of multiple bleach dyed t-shirts now.

 

 

 

Logistics Executive: Alex Hermosa

Year & Program: 4th year, Political Science

Describe O-Week using 3 words: amazing, organized, chaos

Why you think everyone should get involved with O-Week: It’s so much fun!

Previous color team(s) you have been on: Red Timbers and Blue Riptides.

Tips for staying productive while at home *or while using an online platform*: Take breaks!

If you could give your first-year self one piece of advice, what would it be?: Go out and try everything!

What are you most looking forward to getting back to once campus opens?: Going to the Athletic Complex.

Fun quarantine activity you would recommend trying: All-day naps.

A fun fact you love: I’m lactose intolerant but still eat ice cream every day.

Favourite at home DIY?: Baking bread.

 

 

 

Media and Marketing Executive: Cam Bunn

Year & Program: 4th year, Communication Studies

Describe O-Week using 3 words: passion, coffee, community

Why you think everyone should get involved with O-Week: Everyone needs to get involved in Orientation Week because it is one of the best ways to kickstart your university journey. Upon arrival at university, most people do not really know what to expect in terms of culture and community. Laurier Orientation Week creates a community where everyone is included and supported by the various upper-year students that want to create the best initial university experience for incoming high school students. Get involved in O-Week so you can meet your new best friends, understand the school and get to know the university culture more before even starting the academic part of school!

Previous colour team(s) you have been on: Blue Legends, Gold Astros and Gold Infinities.

Tips for staying productive while at home *or while using an online platform*: Try to minimize distractions. I know this is super difficult but if you can, put your phone away in a different location where you can’t touch it, set a timer for an hour (or whatever works best for your attention span) and study without distractions, then give yourself a nice break to go scroll through TikTok. This may sound weird but if you drink a lot of water, you will need a lot of water breaks too! This keeps the brain constantly active, overall making you more productive. Finally, DON’T WORRY! Everyone was in first year once, it is a learning experience. It will be difficult, but I know you will rise to the occasion.

If you could give your first year self one piece of advice, what would it be?: Put yourself out there and get out of your comfort level. I started to get involved in 2nd year and it has been one of my biggest regrets to not get involved earlier. Getting involved allows you to learn skills you can’t learn in an academic setting, and the committees and clubs we have are really fun, good for resumes, and good for meeting new people who have the same interests as you, overall making your transition from high school to university much smoother!

What are you most looking forward to getting back to once campus opens?: I am going straight to the gym! The gym is one of the best ways to de-stress and build up a positive mental and physical health.

Fun quarantine activity you would recommend trying: Linkedin Learning! Learn about somethings you’ve always wanted to know. It is free with your @mylaurier.ca email!!

A fun fact you love: Lobsters can technically live forever .

Favourite at home DIY – TikTok meals!!

 

 

 

Shinerama Coordinator: Jayden Robins

Year & Program: 4th year, BBA

Describe O-Week using 3 words: exciting, busy, Shinerama

Why you think everyone should get involved with O-Week: Believe it or not, I consider myself pretty introverted, so getting involved and trying to make friends can sometimes be challenging… trust me when I say awkward small talk and I know each other all too well. In the end, you just have to remember that university is your chance to decide who you want to be, what you like to do, and what kind of people you like spending time with. O-Week provides the perfect opportunity for you to step outside of your comfort zone for a week or two to allow yourself to discover your new environment.

Previous colour team(s) you have been on: In first year I was RED all the way!!! Since then I’ve shifted over to the neutral committee territory as a Shinerama General for two years and an A-Team Executive last year.

Tips for staying productive while at home *or while using an online platform*: Block out time in your day to get stuff done! EQUALLY IMPORTANT, block out BREAKS (exercise, tv, fresh air, martial arts, tanning, playing with your pets, enjoying life, etc.). Experiment to find out what times of day you’re most productive and make that your “work time.”

If you could give your first year self one piece of advice, what would it be?: Be your genuine self. Don’t get hung up on what other people are doing, just do you. Everyone is going to approach their university experience differently, so don’t feel like you have to conform to anyone else’s ideas of what your experience should be.

What are you most looking forward to getting back to once campus opens?: Wow, where do I even start? I miss in-person meetings! I want real human interactions with people other than my family (no offence to them).

Fun quarantine activity you would recommend trying: If you’re currently living in your hometown and you drive, try going out for a drive and trying to find somewhere you’ve never been before. You’d be surprised by the treasures you can find when you don’t have a destination in mind. Then, when it is safe to do so, take your friends/family to all the cool places you found!

A fun fact you love: Shinerama was started at Laurier and is now Canada’s largest post-secondary fundraiser in support of cystic fibrosis research, and can be found at almost 60 university and college campuses across Canada!

Favourite at home DIY?: I can make a mean Kraft Dinner. They may supply the macaroni and the cheese powder, but I bring the magic touch.

 

 

 

A-Team Coordinator: Blaze Welling

Year & Program: 4th Year, Honours English

Describe O-Week using 3 words: exciting, new, life-changing

Why you think everyone should get involved with O-Week: From a personal sense it’s so amazing to make friends and have fun in an academic setting; in a professional sense, why not get to have fun, meet people, and be wild and get recognition for it?!

Previous colour team(s): I was on Green Renegades my 1st, a Red Riddler breaker in 2nd, and the last 2 years I’ve been on A-Team!

Tips for staying productive while at home *or while using an online platform*: I think making lists and setting goals for each day brings some structure to these unprecedented circumstances. Just planning your day in a productive way and also giving yourself free time is super important to staying sane and happy in these times!

If you could give your first year self one piece of advice, what would it be?: To quote Andy from The Office: “I wish there was a way to know you’re in the good old days, before you’ve actually left them.” Basically I would tell myself: EMBRACE IT ALL. Don’t let anything pass you by, FOMO is real so don’t let it be there. Do things, be spontaneous, and remember this is an experience that will shape you for the rest of your life.

What are you most looking forward to getting back to once campus opens?: Finally getting to see that Golden Hawk spirit in person.

Fun quarantine activity you would recommend trying: learning to cook better!! It’s super applicable to your university experience.

A fun fact you love: Laurier is personally responsible for raising over 3 million dollars through Shinerama for Cystic Fibrosis since 1961!! #BLINGBLING

Favourite at home DIY: DIY pressed flowers for picture frames!!

 

 

 

Go-Team Lead: Cass Spracklin

Year & Program: 4th year, Communication Studies

Describe O-Week using 3 words: coffee, early mornings, unreal memories

Why you think everyone should get involved with O-Week: I think everyone should get involved in O-Week because you create friendships that last a lifetime, and get to impact others lives positively as well. University is a scary place in first year, and it’s important we offer students support to ease their transition into the Golden Hawk community!

Previous colour team(s) you have been on: I’ve been on the committee A-Team two years in row.

Tips for staying productive while at home *or while using an online platform*: Change up your study/work space! Take advantage of your porch, balcony, lawn or backyard. Most Starbucks have outdoor patio seating as well where the wifi typically reaches. Even sitting in the living room with your family, friends or roommates makes a world of a difference! Give yourself breaks, breaks are important while being at home because you’re constantly in the same space. A quick walk, Netflix episode or FaceTime chat with a friend makes it easier to split up your study time.

If you could give your first year self one piece of advice, what would it be?: Don’t be afraid to get involved and put yourself out there. I put a lot of time and energy into second guessing myself and being scared to join committees or clubs, which happened to be one of my best decisions throughout my Laurier experience!

What are you most looking forward to getting back to once campus opens?: The AC!! I cannot wait to workout in an actual gym instead of my student house.

Fun quarantine activity you would recommend trying: embroidery!

A fun fact you love: One can of beer is equivalent to 7 slices of bread.

Favourite at home DIY? DIY snacks!!!!

 

 

 

Go-Team Lead: Jon Scodeller

Year & Program: 4th year, Biochemistry/Biotechnology

Describe O-Week using 3 words: chaotic, eventful, life-changing

Why you think everyone should get involved with O-Week: I think everyone should get involved in O-Week as the people become a second family to you, and you get to have so many fun experiences with your fellow volunteers.

Previous colour team(s) you have been on: First year: Red Timbers, Second year: Red Riddlers, Third year: Gold Infinities.

Tips for staying productive while at home *or while using an online platform*: Set goals for yourself on what you need to get done every day, make sure to schedule in breaks.

If you could give your first year self one piece of advice, what would it be?: Don’t try so hard, just be yourself.

What are you most looking forward to getting back to once campus opens?: Intramurals/the gym, or studying in the science building.

Fun quarantine activity you would recommend trying: Running or Skribbl.io

A fun fact you love: I auditioned for The Next Star twice.

Favourite at home DIY: Baking bread.

 

 

 

Blue Head Ice Breaker: Meghan Mazzaferro

Year and program: 4th year, English and Film Studies

Describe O-Week using 3 words: confidence, bonding, loud

Why you think everyone should get involved in O-Week: It’s the chance to push yourself out of your comfort zone, and give yourself the opportunity to make new friends and learn what you’re capable of.

Previous colour teams you’ve been on: gold, red, and blue.

Tips for staying productive while at home / on an online platform: I find scheduling to be really helpful. It allows me to plan out my days so I can be busy, but not overwhelmed, and makes sure I don’t miss any of the stuff I want to do!

If you could give yourself from first year advice, what would it be?: Don’t be so afraid. The right people are going to love you for you. Also, sign a roommate contract!

What are you most looking forward to getting back to once campus opens: I actually love lectures, I like being immersed in a learning environment and I can’t wait to get back to that. Also, my clubs! I I wanna see all my friends in our weekly meetings!

Fun quarantine activity you recommend trying: Painting! I’ve been playing around with watercolour and I am absolutely TERRIBLE, but it’s really relaxing and fun.

A fun fact you love: Some cats are allergic to people.

Favourite at home DIY: Tie dyeing shirts.

 

 

 

Blue Head Ice Breaker: Bojan Popovik

Year & Program: 4th year, BBA

Describe O-Week using 3 words: exhilarating, rewarding, opportunistic

Why everyone should get involved with O-Week: As a first-year, this is the best time to get familiar with everything the school offers. As a volunteer, there is no better way to meet people, make a positive impact on a new student, and it will teach you a variety of great skills.

Previous Colors I’ve been on: Gold, Red, Green (sequentially).

Tips for staying productive while at home: Try not to work where you sleep, and get your phone away from you.

If you could give your first-year self one piece of advice what would it be? Don’t compare yourself to others and don’t be so hard on yourself.

What am I looking forward to when campus reopens: Hanging out with all of my friends on campus!

Fun quarantine activity: learning the words to your favorite song.

Fun fact I love: Blue whales can swallow things as big as a pomegranate.

Fav at home DIY: Baking.

 

 

 

Gold Head Ice Breaker: Megan Bagley

Year & Program: 4th year, Communication Studies

Describe O-Week using 3 words: spirit, enthusiasm, teamwork

Why you think everyone should get involved with O-Week: I think everyone should get involved in O-Week because you create bonds with your team, other breakers and first years.

Previous colour team(s) you have been on: red timbers & red rivals.

Tips for staying productive while at home *or while using an online platform*: Plan out your time and use an agenda.

If you could give your first year self one piece of advice, what would it be?: I would tell my first year self to get involved in everything I find interesting.

What are you most looking forward to getting back to once campus opens?: I am most looking forward to getting back to bingo at Wilfs.

Fun quarantine activity you would recommend trying: a fun quarantine activity I would recommend trying is picking up a new hobby (running, painting, cooking, etc).

A fun fact you love: you can write a letter in any language and send it to the North Pole, H0H 0H0 Canada and you will receive a letter back from Santa.

Favourite at home DIY?: baking bread!

 

 

 

Gold Head Ice Breaker: Patrick Alido

Year & Program: 4th year, BBA

Describe O-Week using 3 words: hype, memorable, FUN

Why do you think everyone should get involved with O-Week: Everyone should get involved with O-Week because this is the place where everything starts! Everyone coming into first year is in the same position so it’s really important you put yourself out there and meet as many people as possible. Even if you say a couple of words to a large number of people, those words can translate throughout the rest of the year and make meeting people even easier.

Previous colour team(s) you have been on: Red Timbers, Blue Chargers, Green Cyclones.

Tips for staying productive while you’re at home *or while using an online platform*: University is definitely a big jump from high school and it was something I struggled with in my first year. However, as I progressed through my years, I found that the best way for staying productive is to ensure that you are organized and are aware of everything going on in the semester. You are given a syllabus for a reason, so you should begin writing down key dates throughout the semester and plan accordingly. If you have efficient time management and organizational skills, you will be PERFECTLY fine.

If you could give your first year one piece of advice, what would it be?: If I could give my first year self one piece of advice, it would definitely be to cherish all the memories you make in first year more. To be completely honest, going into my fourth year makes me sad because I know my time at Laurier is almost over. People don’t lie when they say university are the best years of your lives, so definitely make sure you make the most of first year, because you only get to experience it once.

What are you most looking forward to getting back to once campus opens?: The thing I am by far looking forward to the most once campus opens will be socializing with all my friends and classmates and just catching up with them. The best part of university for me is all the relationships I’ve cultivated throughout the years, so catching up with all the people that have made my university experience will be the first thing I will do.

Fun quarantine activity you would recommend trying: I would recommend trying to begin reading more books! You literally have so much free time and reading books can actually be a great way to pass time. Also, reading books will make doing your readings in your classes a lot easier and you won’t be thrown off with the amount that some classes require you to read.

A fun fact you love: The twitter bird actually has a name, its Larry T Bird.

Favourite at home DIY? Definitely cooking and trying to figure out new recipes or how you can improve on existing ones.

 

 

 

Green Head Ice Breaker: Erin Quinn

Year & Program: 4th year, Global Studies

Describe O-Week using 3 words: Best week oftheyear

Why you think everyone should get involved with O-Week: O-Week allowed me to meet so many people and really let my guard down and have fun. So many activities in O-Week are a bit silly, but so fun if you throw yourself into them, that’s when lasting memories and friendships are made.

Previous colour team(s) you have been on: Green renegades, guardians, cyclones and now gambits (is there any colour other than green?).

Tips for staying productive while at home *or while using an online platform*: Try to make a conscious effort to spend time off your phone. We are all so plugged in right now because in person interactions are now on the phone and really there isn’t a lot else to do, but it’s really awesome to unplug sometimes.

If you could give your first year self one piece of advice, what would it be?: Do one thing a day that scares you. In university, in courses, in O-Week, in everything you do, you really get out what you put in and pushing yourself outside your comfort zone will allow you to grow as a person and really make the most out of your university experience.

What are you most looking forward to getting back to once campus opens?: Wilfs and Turret!

Fun quarantine activity you would recommend trying: Painting!

A fun fact you love: Sir Wilfrid Laurier never actually came to WLU campus. WLU used to be named Waterloo Lutheran University and later had to be changed because the religious affiliation to the school was changed, but the initials WLU were set in stone. Wilfrid Laurier University was chosen because of the matching initials, and the university didn’t want to change their branding. Honestly, vibes Laurier.

Favourite at home DIY?: Making delicious food from scratch!!

 

 

 

Green Head Ice Breaker: Ryan Magee

Year & Program: 3rd year, BBA

Describe O-Week using 3 words: Best. Time. Ever.

Why you think everyone should get involved with O-Week: It’s a great way to meet new people.

Previous colour team(s) you have been on: Gold, Red, and now Green.

Tips for staying productive while at home *or while using an online platform*: Don’t forget to stretch?

If you could give your first year self one piece of advice, what would it be?: Stop spending so much money on takeout you idiot.

What are you most looking forward to getting back to once campus opens?: Hanging out in the backyard with the roommates.

Fun quarantine activity you would recommend trying: Podcasting! (@ladsinlawnchairs shameless plug).

A fun fact you love: Owls have really long legs.

Favourite at home DIY?: Baking bread.

 

 

 

Red Head Ice Breaker: Talia Pitt

Year & Program: Third year, Psychology

Describe O-Week using 3 words: Hype, hype, and hype

Why you think everyone should get involved with O-Week: O-week is the best way to meet new people and feel like you are at university for something more than learning. It personally really helped me come out of my shell and showed me that I was at school for more. It’s easy to get lost in all the people at university but going to O-Week events makes you feel like you’re a part of something.

Previous colour team(s) you have been on: Gold astros, Red rivals.

Tips for staying productive while at home *or while using an online platform*: Don’t put too much pressure on yourself to always be doing something. Just because you’re at home 24/7 doesn’t mean rest time stops being important. That being said, make a list of all the things you have to do and try and schedule your week loosely.

If you could give your first year self one piece of advice, what would it be?: It’s going to be okay.

What are you most looking forward to getting back to once campus opens?: I’m looking forward to studying on campus, but instead of studying just sitting at a table with my laptop in-front of me while I talk to everyone I’ve ever met as they walk by.

Fun quarantine activity you would recommend trying: Paint by numbers is so mindless but satisfying.

A fun fact you love: Half of all bank robberies take place on a Friday.

Favourite at home DIY?: I have bleach dyed like 30% of my wardrobe which I’m starting to regret.

 

 

 

Red Head Ice Breaker: Kobe Baida

Year & Program: 4th year, BBA

Describe O-Week using 3 words: Colourful controlled chaos

Why you think everyone should get involved with O-Week: O-Week is a great way to start up your academic year and to meet new people who you might have never run into before.

Previous colour team(s) you have been on: Red Timbers, Red Riddlers, Red Rivals (The Legacy!).

Tips for staying productive while at home *or while using an online platform*: After class, start a second new call to debrief with your friends just like you would after walking out of a lecture hall.

If you could give your first year self one piece of advice, what would it be?: Maintain a consistent sleep schedule! Just because you can stay up till 5am every day doesn’t mean you should.

What are you most looking forward to getting back to once campus opens?: Open mic nights at Wilfs with some fire and ice chicken fingers.

Fun quarantine activity you would recommend trying: Painting is a great way to clear your mind and get out some creative energy.

A fun fact you love: Geese have teeth on their tongues.

Favourite at home DIY?: I really want to red tie dye a white hoodie.

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