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Floor Board

Before Dartmouth, I went to a boarding school near Philadelphia. During my four years there, one of the most rewarding experiences I had was becoming a role model and mentor for other students by serving as a Prefect. When I got to Dartmouth, I hoped to continue building my mentoring experiences and serving in positions similar to the one I had in high school. Although I've been able enjoy mentor roles in the Admissions Office and in club sports, my dream job at Dartmouth was always to be an Undergraduate Advisor (UGA). I had first heard about the job from my upperclassmen friend, who was serving as a UGA, and I was immediately interested. I was attracted by the opportunity to engage with first-year residents and shape their Dartmouth experiences, in addition to working with other UGAs and staff who shared my interest in helping others. Not to mention, it pays really well! 

Door with cute stickers
The name stickers my UGA friend made, which I unfortunately didn't get to do remotely

Looking back, I applied to be a UGA almost a year ago as a freshman. I wrote my supplements, went through an interview, and was hopeful that I would get an opportunity. Unfortunately, COVID-19 became a thing soon after and how campus would look like became a mystery. Among the uncertainty, what being a UGA meant in the 2020-2021 academic year also became a question I had no answers to. When I decided to go to Shanghai to take my classes remotely, I had to give up on the idea of becoming a UGA. I was surprised, therefore, when I was notified that I would be able to apply as a remote UGA for the winter term. Since most first-year students are remote this winter, the College thought that having a remote UGA could help direct the 24's through this uncertain and difficult time. I immediately signed up and was happy to hear that I got the job a few weeks later. 

Halfway through the term, and I've had a blast connecting with first-year students through this remote setting. Although the job isn't how I imagined it to be, it's still as fun and rewarding that I had hoped. As part of my job, I get to organize floor meetings for the 24's where we reflect on our Dartmouth experiences and talk about ways to succeed in college, whether that's academically, socially or something else. I have also enjoyed talking individually with each resident, as I get to know a little more about the newest class of Dartmouth. I've noticed that each of my residents have their own passions that make them so interesting to talk to, which is what makes Dartmouth so special! I also really enjoy working with all the other UGAs and staff members to make our residents' lives easier and better. I think being a UGA is not only a great way to serve the community, but also a role in which you can learn a lot about yourself, other cultures and how to be a good community member. I look forward to the rest of the term and all the floor meetings, one-on-one Zooms and virtual events to come!

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