We asked some of the first year delegates at the First Year Integration Conference Presented by OSPE what their highlights were of FYIC, here are their answers!
“Attending FYIC and learning from industry professionals and other well established people sounded like a great idea to me as soon as i heard about it. I was not disappointed. In fact, FYIC Zoomed past my expectations and it was an experience full of ideas, connections, and lessons that I hope will help me throughout my university career and after. Learning about organizations such as OSPE and PEO is something I believe everyone should do! I enjoyed all of the other sessions but mostly the Project Management session, which inspired me to look into a different aspect of engineering as a possible career choice. All in all, the co-chairs and the volunteers at Ontario Tech University made Virtual FYIC an incredible experience and I am very grateful to have had the opportunity to attend!:)” - Yasen Akir, uOttawa
"FYIC was such a great conference! From every aspect of the socialization, to the presentations, to the obvious thought and effort that went into planning this event, FYIC went off flawlessly (at least from the delegates end)! With the school semester being completely online, this event provided a fantastic way to meet new people with the same mindset, who are also going through the same experiences. The socials provided by FYIC were super entertaining - a great way to unwind after the day is done and get everyone excited for the day ahead. The presentations and sessions held during the day were very well coordinated, each one of them thought-provoking and eye-opening. The one that really stands out in my mind was the keynote speech during the opening ceremony about mental health and the stigma surrounding it. I will never think about mental ill-health the same way again, and I am a better person because of it. The staff and volunteers of the conference truly succeeded in creating a warm, open space for people to feel comfortable in, and I hope they know how much all the delegates appreciated their hard work.” - Clara Clark, University of Guelph.
“I am so thankful to have been given the opportunity to represent McMaster at the FYIC. The weekend was full of incredible sessions, from the importance of mental health to the multitude of opportunities available to engineers in the province. The session on Breaking Down Imposter Syndrome was particularly eye-opening in the ways that I have been avoiding opportunities simply by believing I “don’t belong”; I left that presentation with a fresh perspective and newfound confidence in my abilities. Furthermore, I loved getting the chance to connect to inspiring people from around Ontario. The other delegates helped make this conference really enjoyable despite the online environment!” - Sarah Cushnie, McMaster University
"My favourite part of the FYIC was being able to meet (virtually) many other students from across Ontario. It made me understand that all of us first years are facing the exact same challenges and that no one is alone. I learned so much from guest speakers that had tons of experience and expertise who were gracious enough to inform us on all different kinds of things that will help us properly integrate into becoming engineering students. As a first year, I learned so much from so many people that I couldn’t have learned on my own otherwise. Very grateful to have been part of this conference. Thanks to all that made this happen!" -Hamza Shahzadeh, University of Waterloo.
"The First Year Integration Conference (FYIC), on top of marking the official start to my desire for collecting patches, was a beyond rewarding experience. I was fairly involved in high school, but there were still opportunities that I shied away from because I didn’t think I lived up to them. At FYIC, I was able to listen to stories about resilience and imposter syndrome, which has since then helped me reflect on how to be more confident in my self-worth. I was also able to gain a greater perspective on student leadership and discover resources that I didn’t even know existed. I was able to learn so much in just one weekend, and I definitely recommend future first years attend!"
-Jocelyn Xu, McMaster University
"My favorite part of the conference was being able to connect to students from across Ontario. Coming from British Columbia, I had no connections other than within Waterloo. To be given the opportunity to create these connections and discuss with other like-minded students was amazing. I am excited to start working with these new friends to create a strong interschool community among my fellow first years!"
-Carson Bay, University of Waterloo