We are so happy to introduce you all to Anitha! Anitha joined the MCYU team last year as a Volunteer Facilitator in our MCYU in the City Program and this summer she’s worked with us as our Summer Program Assistant.

We sat down with Anitha to hear about her experience as an MCYU in the City Facilitator, her dreams for after graduation, her favourite spots on campus and the advice she wishes she could go back and tell herself in first year!

Hi Anitha. Can you start off by telling us what program you are in here at McMaster? I’m going into my 5th year of Honours Life Science.

Why did you decide to become an MCYU in the City Workshop Facilitator?

I joined MCYU in the City because I see value in educating and empowering youth. I think the workshops have a lot of potential to spread awareness and knowledge about important topics to youth while they’re still young and teach them about issues they may encounter in the future so that they know how to address them appropriately if they do experience them.

What was one highlight from your experience as an MCYU in the City Workshop Facilitator?

One highlight for me while being a facilitator was seeing the excitement in the students’ eyes as I was teaching them about how music affects our brains. It’s enlightening to see how interested they are in topics that interest us as University students. They really are interested in their education and it’s a great feeling to know that we can help them explore their interests.

What was your workshop called? Emotions in Motion.

What 3 words would you use to describe your experience as a Volunteer Facilitator?

Eye-opening, inspiring & rewarding.

What was the most valuable thing you learned or gained from your experience with MCYU? As a science student, I have been taught to think a certain way. From working with MCYU as a facilitator and a Program Assistant, I have had the opportunity to work with people specialized in different areas and I’m discovering the power behind working in interdisciplinary teams. It’s great because we are able to hear different perspectives and address the needs of different types of people. There is so much potential in this approach and I think it should be implemented more.

At MCYU our Credo is Question – Discover – Create. Is there anything you’re especially curious about these days? Lately I have been curious about the power of marketing. It is interesting how elements we may consider as minor, can have such a dramatic influence on your audience. The way colours, fonts and images can be more of a determinant in your audience’s reaction than your text/content is baffling to me. I want to learn more about this industry because you will always need someone familiar with this area.

Is there anything new you want to push yourself to accomplish this year? This year I’d like to push myself to celebrate my accomplishments and live in the moment, rather than only focusing on my end goals.

What are you most excited about this school year? This year, I am excited to be working on my thesis on how to close the knowledge gap between scientists and the community!

What’s one of your Favourite spots on campus? LRW (L.R. Wilson Hall).

Favourite place to study? 6th floor of Mills Library.

Favourite Lunch Spot? Sana Grill.

Best hangout spot? Hazel Tea & Dessert House.

What do you wish you had known as a first year student? I wish I knew how to navigate across Hamilton.

If you could travel back in time and visit yourself in first year, what advice would you give yourself? I would tell myself that you don’t have to spend the whole day at Mills Library studying to do well on a test. Focus, work efficiently and you’ll have time to relax and have fun as well!

Can you share some advice on how to meet new people on campus? Join clubs and volunteer! It might seem intimidating at first, but most great experiences are. Take a chance and meet people who are passionate about the same things you are.

And lastly, do you have any plans or dreams for after graduation? I am applying to a few different programs for after I graduate. At the end of the day, I want to be working in science with people who have similar passions as I do, and interacting with people in my community!

Thank you so much for sharing a bit about yourself and your insights on Campus life with us Anitha. Good luck with school this year!