Media & Press

It’s absolutely ridiculous how…

1 January, 2015

Jamie-Lee Freeston

It’s absolutely ridiculous how much has happened this past summer and semester. But let me tell you, second year is just as incredible, if not more, than first year was.

It all started this summer as an Asphalt Research Assistant with the Department of Chemistry here at Queen’s University. It was amazing to work with a professor, other engineering undergraduate students, as well as Chemistry graduate students to characterize crystallization properties of different asphalts. I learned how to operate different experimental machines, and even got to work on an independent project, which was really cool. I definitely took away many new skills, and it was really interesting to be in a research position directly after first year. I am very excited to see what this upcoming summer holds!

The 2014-2015 school year started off in the best way possible, as I was a part of Queen’s Engineering Frosh Week, something I am very passionate about! The week before first year students arrived, all of the frosh week leaders went through considerable training to prepare. We were then ready for the arrival of 800 new engineering students, and to welcome them into the Queen’s Engineering Family. I am so privileged to have been chosen to be a Frosh Week Leader – it was simply incredible to re-live frosh week from a different perspective, and get to know a group of first year students directly. My frosh group’s name was 2sec(c). The other leaders in my group and I got the students involved in a number of Queen’s Engineering Traditions such as the Grease Pole, and played numerous games and activities, such as the muddy Highland Games and Thundermugz.  In my first year, frosh week was how I became so passionate, and felt so welcomed and included in the Queen’s Family, so it was perfect how I could present the same feelings and environment for the incoming students. And honestly, I enjoyed Frosh Week even more as a second year than I did as a first year! For me, it’s way more fun helping out students and seeing them have fun, confirming to my group and I that we succeeded in introducing and including them in such an amazing faculty family. Welcome Sci ’18! Throughout the semester, I continued to see my frosh group as well, to help them out with anything they needed, and continue bonding. I love my entire group, and am so thankful for the opportunity to get to know them and stay involved in such a unique way.

Academically, second year is the year we specialize in our discipline, and I chose to specialize in Engineering Chemistry. This past semester I loved each and every one of my courses. Yes they were a lot of work, with multiple lab reports, and assignments due every week, but the course material is much more specific than the general first year which made it more enjoyable. This program is really neat in itself, because I take both chemical engineering classes and straight chemistry courses, allowing me to interact with people from many different programs, and gain understanding at both the atomic level and the big picture systematic level.

Along with school work, I continued to stay involved as well. First of all, I was hired to be a First Year Engineering Tutor by the faculty! Along with a few other tutors, once or twice a week we host drop in sessions for first year students to ask questions about any course material, or get help preparing for midterms/exams. It’s such an invaluable experience helping out students whose shoes I was in only a year ago. I absolutely love it. I also stayed active by playing intramural ultimate Frisbee (with my Frosh Group!) and volleyball. I continued to volunteer at the high school open houses as an Engineering Ambassador, and even was a Queen’s Representative at the Ontario University Fair!

With this, I want to continually thank the Schulich Foundation for such a gift, and for all of their support. Happy Holidays to everyone, and may 2015 bring many more unique experiences!