As a first-year walking down Main Mall at Imagine UBC, I was amazed and overwhelmed by the seemingly endless rows of clubs and organizations.
What I had heard was true—UBC does, indeed, overflow with opportunities. Wherever I stood on campus, there was always something happening, and someone doing what they loved.
Where to start
As a new student to UBC, I felt like an outsider. My wish was to truly become a part of UBC’s culture and community. I was, however, lost on where to start my journey. Little did I know that the UBC Student Leadership Conference (SLC) was waiting, ready to act as the starting point for my plunge into student involvement on campus.
A ‘student leader’ does not have to be someone who is the chair of a club or the winner of an election. It is more often someone who wants to belong to a community, and actively seeks personal development as an individual. Student leadership shouldn’t be a royal crown placed on a pedestal—instead, it’s a journey of growth and exploration, fueled by initiative and a willingness to make a difference.
Perks of being a student leader
I found out about the SLC through my friend’s Snapchat stories when she attended the conference as a volunteer. The event seemed impressive—the entire conference hall was filled with students, and I could feel the energy radiating through the screen.
When I asked her about her experience volunteering for the SLC, she gushed about the sheer amount of inspiration and motivation she gained just by being there.
She told me about all the amazing people she met across various faculties and years, as well as the countless student involvement opportunities that were introduced to her. She gained valuable connections and insight while experiencing one of Canada’s largest student-organized leadership conferences—all of this for free with a small time commitment as a volunteer.
Go beyond your comfort zone
Listening to her speak about her own experience, I felt an urge to grasp this opportunity. The SLC was exactly what I had been searching for, and I knew it would allow me to expand my comfort zone in terms of becoming a ‘student leader’ at UBC. I applied to be part of the SLC Planning Committee, and am now the Volunteer Coordinator for SLC 2019.
In my role, I’m witnessing the amount of effort and passion that comes from the entire SLC team. The more I become aware of the values and purpose behind this one-of-a-kind event, the more I feel connected to the UBC community and wish more students would involve themselves as volunteers for this extraordinary conference.
As students on this huge campus, it is our choice to explore the countless opportunities that are here for us. If we wish to make a change, it’s up to us to challenge ourselves beyond our lines of limitations. This is exactly what the SLC is for.
How to get involved
If you are interested in expanding your comfort zone and becoming involved in the UBC community, apply to be a day-of volunteer for SLC 2019. The SLC is an excellent opportunity to widen your vision to new perspectives, ideas, and to make valuable connections. (The free t-shirt is just a plus.)