Meet your Smart Start Team

Meet your Smart Start team for 2021!
Learn more about where they’re from, their program of study, future plans and more.

Jacob (he/him)

Hometown: Strathroy, ON

Program: 4th year, Bachelor of Sport Management

Plan for life after Brock: I’m hoping to complete my Master’s Degree in Sport Management here at Brock prior to continue to work with the Recruitment department and the Men’s Volleyball team!

Extracurriculars at Brock: My life at Brock has gone hand in hand with developing my volleyball coaching career! Since first year, I have been working with the Men’s Volleyball team, beginning as a statistician and now as an assistant coach. I also spend my time outside the classroom coaching at the Niagara Rapids Volleyball Club and working with the independent hockey scouting agency, Dobber Prospects!

#1 item on my BrockU Bucket List: Hike to Decew Falls with my friends!

Advice I would give my 1st year self: Use all the resources offered to you and don’t be afraid to get to know your professors!

My favourite thing about Niagara is… Going to Niagara Ice Dogs games and visiting downtown Niagara Falls!

Liam

Liam (he/him)

Hometown: Stellarton, Nova Scotia

Program: 4th year, Bachelor of Sport Management – Minor in Film Studies

Plan for life after Brock: Directly after graduation, I’d love to continue working in Brock’s student recruitment department. I’d also love to one day become a writer, podcaster, filmmaker, or a combination of the three!

Extracurriculars at Brock: I’ve been involved in a number of things all across campus including: Brock Intramurals, Brock Sport Management Council, Faculty of Applied Health Sciences Student Association, and the Residence Action Council. I’ve also been fortunate to have a number of different on-campus jobs during my time at Brock!

#1 item on my BrockU Bucket List: Travel to another country while representing Brock.

Advice I would give my 1st year self: Put yourself out there! Don’t be afraid to approach your professors, join a club, or get involved in whatever way works for you!

My favourite thing about Niagara is… The amazing walking and hiking trails on the Niagara Escarpment.

Aishah

Aishah (she/her)

Hometown: Lagos, Nigeria

Program: 2nd year, Bachelor of Arts – Psychology Co-op, Minor in Business

Plan for life after Brock: I hope to work in the marketing and human resources sector to apply my knowledge of psychology and business as well as explore organizational psychology. I also plan on getting an MBA before getting my Masters in Psychology. One of my biggest career aspirations is to make mental health resources as accessible and affordable as possible for people in my community.

Extracurriculars at Brock: So far I have been involved in a diverse group of activities at Brock including being a Conversation Partner with ESL students, creating an inclusive leadership focused club called Leaders at Brock while also working on the Planning Committee for the Brock Student Leadership Summit 2021 and being a member of Team Brock at the annual Collegiate Leadership Competition (CLC). In regards to sports, I have previously been on Brock’s Fencing team as well as a semi-finalist at the Badminton Intramurals which was so fun! So far my club experience includes me being a club executive on clubs such as the Brock Muslim Students Association, Leaders at Brock, Brock Psychology Society, Niagara Strong at Brock and Brock Run Club!

#1 item on my BrockU Bucket List: To attend the Homecoming Game at the Meridian Centre!

Advice I would give my 1st year self: Be brave and step out of your comfort zone! This includes being the first to say hi to help you make friends/acquaintances or going to the professor/TA when you need help or checking out various events even when they don’t seem ‘interesting’ to you. Also don’t forget to find your balance; play hard and work smarter not harder. Find what works for you rather than using what works for others. Lastly, be true to yourself.

My favourite thing about Niagara is… Exploring the various small businesses in Niagara and downtown St. Catharines from the restaurants to the bookstores and clothing stores!

Amaka

Amaka (she/her)

Hometown: Mississauga, ON

Program: 3rd year, Concurrent Education – Intermediate / Senior – English & History

Plan for life after Brock: After Brock, I hope to do some teaching internationally helping vulnerable populations and exploring new cultures !

Extracurriculars at Brock: I’m a member of the Concurrent Education Student’s Association which has allowed me to volunteer at many events for the local and external community. I am also President of the English Student’s Association which aims to unite & help the english student’s population at Brock’s

#1 item on my BrockU Bucket List: Since my first year was cut short because of COVID-19, I never got to experience a performance at Isaac’s and that is something I really hope to do before I graduate.

Advice I would give my 1st year self: Don’t let fear stop you from new experiences.

My favourite thing about Niagara is… I love to walk around Downtown St. Catharines and visit my favourite bookstore on St. Paul Street

Anthony (he/him)

Hometown: Niagara Falls, ON

Program: 2nd year, Bachelor of Science – Sciences

Plan for life after Brock: Pharmacy School to become a Doctor of Pharmacy

Extracurriculars at Brock: Brock University Volunteers Association (BUVA), Brock University Heart and Stroke Foundation (BUHS), Faculty of Math and Science Council, HOSA at Brock University, Brock Catholic Students’ Association

#1 item on my BrockU Bucket List: To finally meet the professor’s and lab coordinators that I had in my first year for the first time in person this upcoming school year.

Advice I would give my 1st year self: To make sure that what ever you are doing in regards to school is always working towards the ultimate goal of your happiness and the betterment of this world.

My favourite thing about Niagara is… My favourite thing to do in Niagara is to continue to discover new things in a region I always think I have fully explored. I never fail to be amazed by what Niagara has to offer.

Ashley

Ashley (she/her)

Hometown: Tavistock, ON

Program: 2nd year, Bachelor of Recreation & Leisure Studies – Therapeutic Recreation, Minor in Music

Plan for life after Brock: I would like to become a CTRS (Certified Therapeutic Recreation Specialist), and work within a clinical/hospital setting, focusing children with disabilities!

Extracurriculars at Brock: I am the President of the Brock Recreation & Leisure Council (which works with students, the department of RECL, and the faculty); I am the Head of the RECL Branch of the Faculty of Applied Health Sciences Association & Mentorship Program; and part of the Community Outreach team for the Brock Active Mental Health Initiative. Additionally, I am a member of the Leaders at Brock Club, and was a member of the Leadership Competition 2021 Team with Brock Student Life and Success & Leadership Programs at Brock. Outside of clubs and involvements, I have earned my Campus-Wide Co-Curriculum, my Advanced Sexual Violence & Support Certificate through Human Rights & Equity, and am constantly looking for more opportunities to be a part of the Brock Community!

#1 item on my BrockU Bucket List: Volunteer and help students with move-in day/take part in another Brock preview day!

Advice I would give my 1st year self: Take part in every opportunity you can: meet new friends, go to workshops and events, volunteer, go to the game and party nights: be a part of the Brock experience, there are so many ways to be involved and find activities you will fall in love with!

My favourite thing about Niagara is… Go and explore downtown St. Catharines, especially going to Beechwood Doughnuts (the BEST, highly recommend going the minute you get here), Mahtay’s Cafe, and seeing shows at the FirstOntario Performing Arts Centre!

Daniel

Daniel (he/him)

Hometown: Toronto, ON

Program: 3rd year, Bachelor of Science – Medical Sciences

Plan for life after Brock: Planning to attend Medical School and become a Physician!

Extracurriculars at Brock: I have participated in various Science and cultural clubs!

#1 item on my BrockU Bucket List: To be able to navigate through Mackenzie Chown without getting lost!

Advice I would give my 1st year self: Choose not to live a life by chance, but an extraordinary life by design.

My favourite thing about Niagara is… Visiting the falls and taking hikes!

Feyi

Feyi (she/her)

Hometown: Mississauga, ON

Program: 3rd year, Bachelor of Business Administration – Information Systems

Plan for life after Brock: Real Estate and Financial Consulting

Extracurriculars at Brock: Goodman School of Business Ambassador and Volleyball Intramurals

#1 item on my BrockU Bucket List: Tryout out for the Varsity Track and Field team.

Advice I would give my 1st year self: Ask more questions and get more involved in clubs. We’re here for a short time!

My favourite thing about Niagara is… Niagara Go-Karts with my friends

Maahum

Maahum (she/her/they/them)

Hometown: St. Catharines, ON

Program: 4th year, Concurrent Education – Junior/Intermediate – General Science

Plan for life after Brock: After I finish my Bachelors of Education, I want to do my Masters in Social Justice, Power, and Politics in Education. After that, I would love to begin teaching in a classroom setting, and hopefully find some opportunities to teach abroad.

Extracurriculars at Brock: During my time at Brock, I have been a part of two very influential clubs – Brock Relay for Life and Champions of Change. Both have allowed me to meet some really great people and connect me with spaces to create real change in local and global communities. I have also worked a different few jobs at Brock, also becoming a really important part of my university experience. So, Smart Start has a pretty special place in my heart!

#1 item on my BrockU Bucket List: Grape Stomp!!! I wish I had done this earlier, but it is never too late!

Advice I would give my 1st year self: If I could tell my first-year self anything, it would be to put myself out there more and speak to people in my classes. I know it is a nerve-wracking experience, but sometimes, you just have to look at someone and say “hi, do you want to be friends?”. There is a 100% chance that they will say yes!

My favourite thing about Niagara is… My favourite part about Niagara is all the small parks and beaches that you eventually discover during your time at Brock. As someone who finds a lot of peace outside, having places to go to relax and clear my head has become absolutely essential to my university experience.

Maria

Maria (she/her)

Hometown: Niagara-on-the-Lake, ON

Program: 5th Year, Bachelor of Science – Medical Sciences

Plan for life after Brock: Looking to pursue a Masters of Public Health (MPH) with career aspirations in infection control and epidemiology.

Extracurriculars at Brock: Leaders at Brock, Brock Leads, Brock Student Leadership Summit Planning Committee, Brock Chapter: Canadian Obesity Network, Student Conduct Council, Social Media Coordinator for Brock Biological Society, President of Brock Stem Cell Club

#1 item on my BrockU Bucket List: Complete my Campus Wide Co-Curriculum (CWC)! I just found out about it this past school year and have made a dent in my progress and only have a couple domains left!

Advice I would give my 1st year self: Get involved in extracurriculars, Develop relationships with your professors, Attend different Brock/Busu events, Don’t be shy to reach out and make friends with students who aren’t in your program of study, Remember to have fun, time flies!

My favourite thing about Niagara is… Favourite thing about Niagara has to be the friendly people and the gorgeous landscapes!

Megan

Megan (she/her)

Hometown: Waterloo, ON

Program: 5th year, Concurrent Education – Junior/Intermediate – English and Geography, Minor in English

Plan for life after Brock: I want to pursue a Master of Education

Extracurriculars at Brock: I have worked at the Central Equipment Room, participated in intramurals, and was an executive for Concurrent Education Student Association.

#1 item on my BrockU Bucket List: Hike the Bruce Trail

Advice I would give my 1st year self: Get involved! Brock offers a wide range of opportunities for their students to get involved within the school or the community. Stepping out of your comfort zone can provide you with great opportunities that will create long lasting memories.

My favourite thing about Niagara is… Trying the local restaurants on St. Paul Street, downtown St. Catharines. They have a range of sit down restaurants, fast food and bakeries. I highly recommend Beechwood Doughnuts!

Noor

Noor (she/her)

Hometown: Burlington, ON

Program: 4th year, Concurrent Education – Intermediate/Senior – Mathematics and Biology

Plan for life after Brock: Goal is to complete my four year undergrad and two years of teacher’s college, as well as complete additional qualifications within teaching.

Extracurriculars at Brock: Interfaith Dialogue Chats, Residence Action Council (RAC), Welcome and Information Desk Assistant, BUSU Volunteer Team Lead For O-Week, Call Campaign, Research Participant for MICA, Smart Start Team Assistant (2019-2021), Niagara 2021 Canada Summer Games Event Volunteer and attended Muslim Student Association events and prayers (MSA)

#1 item on my BrockU Bucket List: Dress up as Boomer the Badger

Advice I would give my 1st year self: Make time to develop and form relationships with others both in and out of your program. While school requires attention and hard work, forming study groups from the beginning will reward you with knowledge and good memories.

My favourite thing about Niagara is… I love going to Niagara Falls, specifically the environment Clifton Hill provides!

Sabrina

Sabrina (she/her)

Hometown: Mississauga, ON

Program: 5th year, Concurrent Education – Intermediate/Senior – English Language & Literature and Geography

Plan for life after Brock: High school teacher and cheer coach. I will then do my masters of education and administration at Brock to eventually superintendent of a school board! I am also considering a masters in urban and regional planning.

Extracurriculars at Brock: Brock Cheer!!!!!

#1 item on my BrockU Bucket List: Running along the Bruce Trail.

Advice I would give my 1st year self: If you are thinking about getting involved on campus and you are nervous, trust me do it. You will look back in a few years and be so proud of yourself for getting involved. There are so many opportunities, friendships, and experiences that come from getting involved on campus and I know I would not be who I am today if I did not have the courage to step out of my comfort zone and get involved! You do not know how great you will be until you try!

My favourite thing about Niagara is… I love to run and the Bruce Trails is the place to go, there are small waterfalls and even larger ones that can be seen along the ways making the trails great for hiking and running. We are also home to a bunch of wonderful wineries that host amazing restaurants! All in all Niagara is amazing because it feeds the foodie and the runner in me.

Sarah

Sarah (she/her)

Hometown: Brampton, ON

Program: 4th year, Concurrent Education- Primary/ Junior

Plan for life after Brock: My dream is to one day be a Special Education teacher! After graduating Brock, I plan to take additional qualification courses to get the qualification I need to pursue this career!

Extracurriculars at Brock: During my time at Brock, I have had the opportunity to participate in a variety of extracurriculars! I have participated in a volunteer opportunity at the Niagara Children’s Centre, been a member of the Brock University Champions of Change club, volunteered at the Concurrent Education Holiday Extravaganza, and worked in a variety of student staff positions on campus.

#1 item on my BrockU Bucket List: I would love to take a course at the Marilyn I Walker School of Fine and Performing Arts

Advice I would give my 1st year self: I would remind myself to not be afraid to ask for help! I have learned that Brock has so many services and supports for students that I would have benefited from in first year!

My favourite thing about Niagara is… I love exploring the wineries and trails in Niagara on the Lake!

Sloane

Sloane (they/them)

Hometown: Newmarket, ON

Program: 4th year, Bachelor of Arts – Women and Gender Studies and English, minor in History

Plan for life after Brock: To come back for a masters!!

Extracurriculars at Brock: I have been involved in volunteering on campus for trick or eats and in the community, I love to volunteer!

#1 item on my BrockU Bucket List: To finish the Campus-Wide Co-Curriculum

Advice I would give my 1st year self: Buy a planner and stick to it!! Also, professors have office hours and they’re SO useful

My favourite thing about Niagara is… I love to be outside, so I love going to the botanical gardens or the butterfly conservatory

Syerra

Syerra (she/her)

Hometown: St Catharines, ON

Program: 2nd year, Consecutive Education – Visual Arts

Plan for life after Brock: Teacher, Principal

Extracurriculars at Brock: I was the president of the BAC for two years. I have also worked at Brock since 2017! Some positions I’ve had include visual arts program assistant, head instructor with youth university, and a BU4U Engagement community senior leader! I also work with the Children’s Movement Program, and I will be your off campus living student assistant for the upcoming year!

#1 item on my BrockU Bucket List: Grape Stomp!

Advice I would give my 1st year self: Be more involved on campus- find your people!

My favourite thing about Niagara is… The beautiful natural environment! I love exploring the Bruce trail, and other heritage and natural sites.

Valerie

Valerie (she/her)

Hometown: Niagara Falls, ON

Program: Bachelor of Science (Medical Sciences) Graduate

Plan for life after Brock: Starting Master of Science in Applied Health Sciences (Health Science) in September

Extracurriculars at Brock: President of Brock Health Sciences Council, Peer Mentor and Executive on Faculty of Applied Health Sciences (FAHS) Association, Biostatistics Lab Assistant, Union Station Employee at Brock University Students Union (BUSU), Athlete on Brock’s Varsity Squash Team

#1 item on my BrockU Bucket List: Finish the Campus-Wide Co-Curriculum!

Advice I would give my 1st year self: Get involved in the Brock community right from your first year! Brock has over 100 clubs on campus, multiple sports teams (varsity and recreational), and events/workshops happening each week; there are plenty of ways to make friends, while participating in campus initiatives and having fun!

My favourite thing about Niagara is… Enjoying the beautiful sunsets over Lake Ontario at Sunset Beach!

Vani

Vani (she/her)

Hometown: Welland, ON

Program: 3rd year, Bachelor of Science – Medical Sciences

Plan for life after Brock: To pursue graduate studies and eventually work in healthcare!

Extracurriculars at Brock: VP of the Brock Leaders Citizenship Society and Golden Key International Honours Society. Member of Brock Rotaract and Med Plus, as well as being a Brock Ambassador, Leadership & Honours Societies Assistant, ExperienceBU Assistant, and now as a Smart Start Team Assistant!

#1 item on my BrockU Bucket List: Complete the Campus-Wide Co-Curriculum!

Advice I would give my 1st year self: Everyone else is in the same boat as you – whether it be moving away from home, living in a new city, or adjusting to a different way of education. Know that there are so many supports and services available to assist you through all those changes!

My favourite thing about Niagara is… I love hiking the Niagara Gorge!