Academic Affairs Commissioner Exit Blog: Winter 2019

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Shehnoor Nasir
Academic Affairs Commissioner
Fri, 04/26/2019 - 14:15

Guest blog by Shehnoor Nasir.

I was whisked into the role of an Academic Affairs Commissioner midyear, and it has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life.

I was tremendously excited for the position, although I did experience occasional bouts of anxiety because I did not want to disappoint the students we strive to serve.

Jump into any opportunity that sounds exciting because you owe it to yourself to try.

Richard Branson once said: “If somebody offers you an amazing opportunity but you are not sure you can do it, say yes – then learn how to do it later!” These words, for some reason, have always been with me because it encourages you to grab every opportunity even if you’re consumed by self-doubt (something I learned that’s very common among students!). I was lucky enough to be surrounded by wonderful people readily available to help me whenever I asked. So, if I can be so bold to offer anything of value, it would be to jump into any opportunity that sounds exciting because you owe it to yourself to try.

One major undertaking of this role was continuing the legacy of my incredible predecessors in executing the Feds Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching Award. I would like to extend a thank you to all the students who nominated and endorsed instructors they believed deserved this recognition. With so many incredible candidates nominated for the award, it was an extremely difficult decision for the undergraduate senate committee to make and after much deliberation, the committee chose two exceptional instructors. My respect and admiration for all the nominated instructors cannot be expressed solely in words. 

It was heartwarming to learn that UWaterloo has remarkable instructors making such a significant impact on students’ lives and we desperately need more instructors like them.

Another rewarding aspect of my job was serving on committees - specifically, the Policy 70-72 drafting committee. This committee was tasked with reviewing the policies that deal with student petitions, grievances, and appeals on campus. For me, this was an exhilarating experience because it was extremely important to be mindful of how any changes to the policy can impact students and ensure that their needs are firmly put forth.

As all good things come to an end, I absolutely loved my role as an AAC and I only wish I had more time. I was fortunate enough to work alongside superb people and met amazing students who are working tirelessly to improve the student experience. I learned a lot about Feds through my role and it prompted my interest to do more which is why I’ll be serving as an Arts Councilor. It’s inspiring to see so many people on campus who truly care about each other and want to make UWaterloo a better place for future students.

Have a wonderful summer everyone - it’s been a pleasure!