Posted February 3, 2011 by Amy Liss 

Chicago, Here I Come: Perspective of an Undergraduate

Adam Dunbar, University of Massachusetts–Lowell, will be attending his first annual conference this year as an undergraduate student.

When I look at my collegiate experience up to this point, and how it is defined, there are many opportunities that have been presented to me both as an individual and as a student leader and the University of Massachusetts–Lowell. I can say without question that none has impacted me, though, more than the opportunities that ACUI has given me.

Adam DunbarTo date, I have attended three Region I conferences and the 2010 I-Lead Institute. They have helped me to discover not just myself and many of my strengths and weaknesses, but also a career in the student affairs profession. Without these conferences, I never would have met the amazing people who showed me how rewarding student affairs and working in the student union could be. The professionals and planning teams at these conferences are so passionate about what it is that they do, and they want to help students be the best student leaders and managers they can be. The regional conferences offer a unique opportunity to network with professionals as well as other students who may be in similar situations. Those leading sessions are willing to answer any question, big or small, in specially tailored discussions and activities that are aimed toward either student growth or issues that leaders may have on their campuses. They are extremely rewarding and provide great connections for all that attend.

This year, as the recipient of the Thomas Ahern scholarship for Region 1, I have been given the opportunity to attend my first ACUI annual conference in Chicago. It has been something that I have wanted to do since my first regional conference, and now I am able to go. I am very excited to network with other students and professionals from all regions across the country as well as delegates from overseas.

A friend of mine and I will be kicking off the Chicago experience by attending the undergraduate student network. This will be an opportunity unlike any I have seen before; the network provides sessions tailored to undergraduates and provides a great atmosphere to exchange ideas with new friends across the globe and gain new perspectives to bring back to our institutions. I am also looking forward to opportunities for community involvement, expecially in the form of community service. My anticipation for it is very high. This is going to be very different than any of the regional conferences I have attended in the past, and I am anxious and excited for the journey ahead.

Chicago, here I come!

Amy Liss

Amy Liss is the Associate Director, Student Activities and Leadership at University of Massachusetts–Lowell.


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