Last fall, we welcomed our first intern, Kassandra Anderson, who had a chance to explore and contribute to everything writing- and English-related. We very much enjoyed having her here, and are pleased to share her reflections with our readers.
First off, I should explain why I visited the Mount for an extended period of time. Since the end of September, I have been coming to the Mount once a week for a co-op placement. The high-school co-op program is intended to help students find their career path by using hands-on methods of learning and doing the job they eventually see themselves in. I already had a good idea of what career path I wanted to take, but was unsure about what path I would need to follow to get there. So, for the past few months, I have been on campus participating in classes, events, and observing some of the jobs the faculty and staff do around campus. I have attended Shakespeare, Creative Writing, Introduction to Editing, and Introduction to Psychology, to name a few classes I’ve enjoyed sitting in on. I have also spent time in the print shop, the library, the public affairs office, and the book store, following what the staff does around campus.
My time at The Mount has been a wonderful experience. The people have been so welcoming and open. Any question I had, such as what goes on in the daily life of the university or what the work load might be like, was answered without hesitation, and some people even gave examples of what they had done and what they would do differently now that they have more experience. Students and faculty members have given me advice on how to do well in classes and how to balance life and school.
I have also found that everybody is eager to help one another. For instance, I spent some of my hours in the library at the reference desk and watched librarians how to help students do research for their essays while giving them tools to be able to do it for themselves in the future. Another thing that stood out for me was when a student couldn’t find his professor’s classroom, another student stopped and asked if he needed help. She helped him find his class even though she looked to be in a rush. One thing that I noticed was that no matter who I stopped to ask for directions or for advice for the upcoming year, people were willing to help and talk to me. Every time I sat in on a class, students would try to get me up to speed and let me participate in their group activities. They took the time to explain what they were doing, and why, when they could have been using that time to further their progress in that class.
Over the past few months, I have learned many things that I need to prepare for in the upcoming year and skills that I need to acquire to ease the transition from high school to post-secondary education. These insights aren’t common for someone in grade twelve like me, and many people my age are unprepared for their path ahead. So it has been a real honour to get a “sneak peek” into the life of a university student at the Mount. I look forward to attending later this year for a Bachelor of Arts in English.
And we look forward to having her back!