Earlier this month I had the opportunity to go to the Residence Life Conference and represent Nipissing University as a delegate and as a presenter. There were 8 Nipissing students in total who attended this conference, 6 of which presented. Nipissing was one of 20 post-secondary institutions from across Canada that participated in Brock University’s Residence Life Conference 2017.
The synopsis for the conference was:
“Be YOU is about celebrating the 2017 Residence Life Delegates holistically, or as we say at Brock: student, staff, and self. Delegates will have the opportunity to explore the various aspects that make them who they are through sharing with others like themselves and learning new things.” (Natale, Andrew, 2017)
The BE YOU aspect of the conference carried on for the whole weekend and looking back on it a week later, I am thinking about what it means to BE YOU! Who am I? What did I learn that will help better myself as a student, a council executive, a teammate, a friend, and a person?
There were sessions where the students mingled and got to interact with students from other universities. We were divided up into sections and went around to different presentations and learned many different things.
One of the presentations I went to was about taking the negative and turning it into the positive, by two girls from Trent University. Take something negative that has happened to you and turn it around to make it positive. So if you got a bad mark, look at the teacher’s comments to see where you can improve for next time. I have already had the opportunity to use this in my own life. Turned some unfortunate news into some positive news.
The next session I went to was “are you smarter than a goldfish?”, by a student from Wilfrid Laurier. This helped with resources to see what kinds of resources are available for different learning styles and expanded upon the learning styles that I was already familiar with.
The third session I went to was about gossip and team work by University of Toronto, Scarborough Campus on how teams don’t work together well if members are gossiping about one another behind their backs, as well as how to support a teammate that needs help.
The fourth session I went to was about LGBT and comparing them to the Rocky Horror Picture show characters. There was lots of information about LGBT and resources for the individuals from Georgian College and across Canada. It was interesting to hear how things we going for LGBT students across the province and how there were such different places in the different universities.
In the fifth session, I was presenting on Inclusive Language, stereotypes and slurs. I, alongside two other Nipissing students, presented on this topic to a room full of people. It was interesting to hear how the universities and residences across Canada are so different yet so much the same.
In the different sections, each presentation was judged by an anonymous judge for a final score. On the last day of the conference the top 5 teams presented again so more people could see the amazing presentations and the hard work that had gone into each of them. The final winner was from University of Ottawa with her presentation “Falling on Deaf Ears”, on how the deaf can teach us to listen better.
All in all, it was an amazing weekend. We learned lots about different universities, how to help our teams and make our residences a comfortable place for people to express themselves, as well as feel comfortable talking to the residence staff; all things which Nipissing does well. I feel privileged to live at Nipissing in residence.
Natale, Andrew. (2017, August 22). Residence Life Conference 2017; Brock University. Retrieved from Brock University: https://brocku.ca/rlc2017/