Meet Nancy Zhao, a second-year Innis student, the ICSS Vice-President Internal and InSIGHT Co-Head!
Hello! My name is Nancy and I am a second year student specializing in Computer Science and minoring in Linguistics. I love getting involved around the community – especially at Innis College, where the welcoming spirit, commitment to a great university experience, and emphasis on student engagement all make me proud to be a part of Innis.
At Innis, I am Vice-President Internal of the Innis College Student Society, I co-chair and mentor as part of the InSIGHT Mentorship Program, and I work for the Innis Communications Team as Digital Media Assistant. You might also see my photography in the Innis Herald and on the Innis Inspirations Facebook page!
As InSIGHT Co-Chair, I’m very grateful to be able to give back to the community that has provided me with so much support in my first year. The program aims to foster meaningful connections between first year mentees and upper year mentors in similar programs of study, which has been rewarding to coordinate and see – especially as the transition into university can be an intimidating and turbulent time, and so receiving guidance from someone who has been through similar experiences is very helpful. A challenge that Lucy (Mentorship Team Lead), Dasha (my fellow InSIGHT Co-Chair), and I face is building a culture of mentorship, where the value of mentorship as a mutually beneficial relationship is prominent. There is the misconception that mentorship is always a one-way street; however, mentors can take away just as much learning and growth from the experience as mentees do.
I’m lucky to have had many mentors – from teachers, to upper year students, to professionals in the industry that I’m interested in – who have provided invaluable guidance throughout the years. This year, I’m participating in the Innis Alumni Mentorship Program, where students are matched with alumni of similar field of study or work. Shout out to my mentor who shares very insightful discussion on academic, co-curricular, and career life!
In these busy times, with final assignments to complete and exams to study for, it’s so important to remember to set aside time for yourself. Spend some time with valued people, on hobbies, on resting, anything that can take your mind off the exam period stress. It’s difficult to perform at your best when studying 24/7, so be sure to take breaks! You got this!
Be present in the moment. Don’t be afraid to explore new things and meet new people, you’ll learn so much from each one and create amazing memories along the way. Make the most out of the myriad of opportunities out there, but also remember that balance is key. Study smart and don’t hesitate to ask for help when you need it. Take care of yourself and believe in yourself, it’ll all work out in the end.