Failure is good, because we learn from our mistakes.

Andrew McBurney - VP Academic
Posted on: November 11, 2017

EngSoc! Hope the term has been going well! I hope midterms and job matching went well, and the semester is winding down nicely!
For this issue, I’d like to follow in the footsteps of my predecessors. I’m taking my last ‘serious’ Iron Warrior issue to talk about my successes and failures as Vice President Academic, to reflect on my tenure, and to discuss initiatives I wish I carried out, but due to time or other circumstances were not feasible.
Things I’m Most Proud Of
There were many little things I took pride in during my tenure as Vice President Academic, but here are a few which stood out for me:
- Helping facilitate professional and career development events such as Resume Critiques, Interview Skills, and our Fall and Winter Career Fair.
- Partnering with external organizations such as Facebook, and Google to run workshops/talks for engineering students.
- Being a voice for engineering concerns with regards to new co-op initiatives, like WaterlooWorks, Rate My Workterm, and Co-op 2.0.
- Conducting surveys and holding feedback sessions with CECA representatives to provide engineering students with a direct line to voice their concerns.
- Dropping the hottest mixtape of 2017, at the final council meeting of Winter 2017.
Things I wish I Could’ve Done Better
I wish I had the time to focus on more initiatives, such as outreaching to external organizations, mental health objectives, and general engineering outreach within the faculty.
1) Partnerships With External Organizations
Some of our most well-attended workshops were events where we partnered with external organizations such as the Google Technical Interview Skills and Facebook Vice President Infrastructure Talk.
It would have been nice to hold more workshops with external organizations. Given the time, this is something I would have liked to pursue further.
2) Mental Health Objectives
I wish I was able to focus more of my time on mental health initiatives. Similarly, with the workshops, I wish I would have reached out to external mental health organizations to partner on running events and services geared towards mental health awareness in the engineering community.
Furthermore, I wish I could see the engineering referendum on mental health to its completion as Vice President Academic. I hope the foundation has been set so that future generations of engineering students may benefit from the addition of another mental health counselor in the Engineering Faculty.
3) Engineering Outreach
While I believe I did a decent job at getting feedback from EngSoc council, one thing I wish I did a better job at is outreaching to the engineering faculty as a whole.
While the Engineering Society represents a large portion of engineering students, I know it isn’t 100% representative of the engineering student body.
I tried a few different initiatives such as giving updates through the academic reps to be more transparent and encourage communication with students, but I still feel I could have done a better job with outreach to the faculty.
Conclusion
I’m going to miss being your Vice President Academic EngSoc. I hope my contributions made a difference, and hope for the best going forward for the future of the Engineering Society, the Engineering Faculty, and the university as a whole.
Cheers fam, love y’all. <3