Jasmine Renaud, a third-year Canadian studies and history student, writes about her experience as a Peer Helper, which opened new doors to her within her program and the Carleton community.

This year has been one to remember and definitely one of the most influential years in my academic career at Carleton so far. When I graduated high school in 2010, I wasn’t really sure what I wanted to do, only that I wanted to attend university to get a degree. I came here as a double major in Canadian Studies and History. Like everyone else, I was a little scared to come to university, and I kept thinking I was setting myself up for failure. In the Arts One program, there was one Peer Helper who really helped me realize that university should not be scary, and that if you work hard, you can excel in anything you put your mind to. I wish I could remember what her name was, because she really had an impact on me.

Last year, I applied to the Peer Helper program to try to make a similar impact on other students . I applied for the position in the Canadian Studies department as the ArtsOne Peer Helper. After going through the interview process, I felt confident about the results. I was offered a position in the Canadian Studies department. Through my experiences this year with the Peer Helper program, I was able to gain many valuable connections and meet some new friends who are also in the program. With the creation of the new Indigenous Studies minor being rolled out, a lot of my work was trying to promote this new minor as well as the program as a whole. This meant a lot of good, valuable experience connecting with students who may be interested in coming to Carleton, and explaining to them the value of a degree in Canadian Studies. Through my interactions in hosting events and participating in the University Day for potential new students, I have realized what I would like to do with my life as a future career as a teacher.

For any student looking for a small way to get involved with their department or even in school as a whole, becoming a Peer Helper is one of the best programs. Through the other activities I participate in at school, this has definitely been the most influential. It has allowed me to get involved in my department and the recruitment of new students. I was able to use my strengths to try and get the department recognized a bit more within the campus community. Overall, this experience is something that I will remember throughout the rest of my Carleton career, and it’s be something I will take with me to where ever else I end up in life.

Submitted by Jasmine Renaud, a third-year Canadian studies and history student.

To find more information on the Peer Helper program, visit carleton.ca/seo/leadership-development/peer-helper-program/


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