What is one of your favourite memories of living at SJC?
If I’d have to choose just one (of many!) favourite memories, it will have to be the long breakfasts and dinners; sometimes resulting in spontaneous activities, endless laughter, and enriching conversations.
What unique qualities of SJC did you appreciate the most?
I love the international, graduate aspect of the college because it was beautiful how we were all of varied nationalities, backgrounds, faiths, traditions, and cultures, but the immigrant experience was rather similar. It was a gift to walk through the transition of coming to Canada with others around who could relate.
Having the kitchen/cleaning/office staff be part of the community was a wonderful part of the SJC experience as well, because it enhanced the family vibe that the college has. I owe Shawn and Clarence (from SJC Culinary Services) endless thanks for all the recipes tips and tricks that they taught me!
What do you miss about living at SJC?
Where do I even begin?! I’m sure I’ll leave a lot out but to list a few things:
- The people; residents and staff
- Breakfast and dinner conversations
- Getting all dolled up for formal dinners
- Learning about places I had never heard of or couldn’t imagine what would be like
- Listening to residents’ research interests, findings, and journeys through academia
- My room! and the endless re-decorating
- Impromptu gatherings
- SJC traditions and committees involvement
- Ian’s words of wisdom and life lessons
- Celebrating birthdays, graduations, cultural festivities
How did living at SJC support your academic and/or career development?
SJC helped in immeasurable ways. The first thing that comes to mind is being involved in SJC committees. This provided the chance to grow in skills that require the ‘lived experience’. It taught me about community building, service leadership, sharing, listening, and how to serve lovingly. The staff and principal’s wise guidance, observations, and conversations was all instrumental in growing, which ultimately made me a better teacher.
What kind of career opportunities have you had since living at SJC?
I went from teaching-on-call all sorts of subjects, to being an Education Assistant for Humanities and STEM, to High School Art and Special Education teacher, and currently as an 8-12 Art Teacher and Department Head. It was a bumpy, lengthy, and emotional ride!
What advice do you have for residents currently living at SJC or preparing to leave the College?
You’ll miss it more than you think (or might admit!) – have a good look around and be grateful for all that SJC is and has brought to you. The unique experience that it provides is unparalleled. Soak in all that it has to offer: all the connections made; all the beautiful moments, no matter how mundane.