The Union Looks Back: An Interview

-Zenia Zuraiq, I Year B.Sc Physics
-Sera Grace John, I Year B.A. English
Image Source: Stella Maris College Students’ Union 2017-18 (Facebook Page)

Amongst all the madness and the rush of the elections and campaigning, it still hasn’t sunk in that we’re getting a new union soon. We snatched a few quick moments with the current union – Sharline P. (President), Immaculate Trishia (Vice President), Anitta Jason (General Secretary), Athulya Tessy Mathew (Treasurer), Swetha Ann Thomas and Sangeetha Joseph (Cultural Secretaries) – amongst their busy schedules for a short interview to look back at the year that was.

Well, the Union planned a lot of exciting events this year. Amongst all the events you did this year, which one was your favourite to plan?

Sharline : Organising and planning every single event has been an equally exciting and fun  learning experience but if I have to choose one, it will be the Fresher’s talent hunt. Since that was our first big event and the theme was “food”, both ours as well the freshers’ excitement levels were over the roof!

Trishia : I was part of the activities of college since first year, being event head for the fresher’s talent hunt for first years and inter-years and the secretary of Event Management club in the second year. I was used to organising activities so it was nothing new when I got into the union. I think the most favourite event was the Fresher’s Talent Hunt. It was interesting to lay out our ideas and it was also challenging as it was our first big event together as a team.

Anitta : It was our first event, the Freshers’ talent hunt, because that was the first event we planned on a large scale. We learnt so many things. We bonded so much. And the best part being the theme was fooood!

Swetha :  Choosing any one favourite event is a Herculean task as each event was a learning experience. But if I were to choose one, it would be the movie night we hosted on campus. We had to face a lot of hurdles for that one but we all stuck together till the very end. And I believe that’s why we were able to pull it off, despite it all.

Sangeetha : For me, it was the Fresher’s talent hunt. As it was our first event, we were really excited and worked hard to put up a great show.

Athulya : I don’t have a specific one. All the events are favourites to me. See, till now, we were participants of all the events. This is the first time that we got to organize these events and it was so exciting. Every time we planned something, we thought about how we could do it differently and what new event we could possibly bring in this year. And that’s how the ‘Light a Life’ initiative and the movie screening.

Now, let’s have a flashback. How did it feel when you heard you were going to be part of the Union?

Sharline : All my friends, batchmates and family members around me were excited and happy. I was, too, and I can’t deny that. But I also quickly realised that this was going to be no child’s play and that there is going to be a lot of sacrifice, hard work and dedication involved. As someone who loves meeting new people and being active, I instantly knew I would fit right in.

Trishia : When I heard that I was part of the union, I was excited that I could finally put forth and implement my ideas. But in a way, I knew what I was stepping into because the responsibility is massive. I felt it gave me a better platform to voice out what I wanted to say and to work with people who are very supportive.

Anitta : I was totally stunned! It took a while to sink in, but then I enjoyed my moment of glory. I was so happy and I couldn’t stop thanking God!

Swetha : A lot of effort was put in by my friends for the election, may it be with the posters or helping me with the speech. I was overjoyed that their efforts didn’t go in vain.

Sangeetha : I was so happy and so excited. It was something that I had very little expectations of getting.

Athulya : I had a mixed feeling. I was happy, but at the same time worried if I will be able to manage both my academics and the union work. But by God’s grace, I could. I was the person who decided the day before the e-nomination that I would also contest for the elections. And the entire process got over in three to four days. So even before I could digest the fact that I was going to contest for election, I got the news that I got elected.

And finally, do you have any advice for the incoming first years and/or the new union?

Sharline : For the upcoming Union – It is going to be a bittersweet experience. But it is definitely worth it. Every mistake made is a lesson learnt. Do not take anything personally. Communication is the key. Value everyone’s opinions. Above all, stick with each other no matter what and cherish every single moment.
For the freshers – No matter how different or quirky you are, you will find your tribe. You will find a home in Stella. All you need to do is open up and utilise the opportunities given to you.

Trishia : My advice for the first years would be to grab every opportunity that comes your way. Don’t simply come to college just for the sake of attendance, because at the end of the day it’s all about the fun you had. As for the upcoming union, I want to tell you that it is not a bed of roses as you think, it’s a roller coaster. There’ll be absolute highs and absolute lows. There will be lows, but get over it, move on and look at what’s coming up next, because the year just goes fast. Thinking quickly and critically, getting over your lows and having patience is what it’s all about.

Anitta : We did have our fair share of sorrows and happiness but now, when I look back, I can proudly describe my 2017-18 as’ Zindagi na milengi dobara’. So, all the best girls! Have a great year ahead!

Swetha : As long as the union sticks together as one, no hurdle is going to be big enough. At the end of the day, it all depends on how you see things. Everyone’s got their perspective and it’s about putting it all together.

Sangeetha : To be in a Union is one of the best things that happened to all 6 of us. It was definitely not a cakewalk for us. But, together, we made sure that we supported each other. So I hope the upcoming union members will support each other. If we are united, we can do good things for the college.

Athulya : To the incoming union, there’s only one thing to say – stay united, whatever the circumstances are. Do not stick to your post alone and do that job alone. There can be cases where your co union members may not be able to do some work due to some valid reason. Then, the others will have to take that job and finish it. It’s YOUR UNION. Always stand for it. Whatever happens during the course of being a union member, take everything as a challenge and overcome it and learn from it. Come out of your cocoon and explore the wonderful opportunities you have.

 

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