For incoming USC communications officer Mikaela Harrison, being heavily involved in the Western University community is nothing new.
Harrison has had her hands full with campus involvement since first year.
The fourth-year political science major with a minor in philosophy was a social science faculty soph for three years. This year, she is the academics programming assistant for the social science soph team and the chief returning officer for the Social Science Students' Council. On top of all of that, she's played varsity lacrosse at Western since first year.
With her background in political science and experience connecting with students through sophing, Harrison felt that the USC communications officer role was a great way for her to mix her interest in politics with communication to create engagement on campus.
“In my experience, I’ve noticed how easy it is to connect with first-year students, but I think sometimes you miss the mark on engaging second-year students and third-year students … I think it's important to make sure that students are engaged during their whole university career and not just in that first year,” Harrison said.
Her role as a faculty soph opened her eyes to the USC and how much impact it has on the student experience. Harrison’s main priority as the incoming communications officer is to facilitate good relations with students on campus.
“My main goal in pursuing this position is making sure that students are aware of what opportunities are available to them and engaging them with the material the USC puts forth,” Harrison said.
In her spare time, Harrison enjoys reading fiction and nonfiction. Her favourite fiction authors include Scott F. Fitzgerald and Jonas Jonasson; her favourite nonfiction author is Malcolm Gladwell. Harrison also enjoys running and yoga.
In preparation for her role, Harrison has met with Jana Cernavskis, the USC's outgoing communications officer. She also plans to continue Cernavskis' project of making the USC's website more student friendly and accessible.
"The executive team has some pretty good ideas moving forward, and I'm excited to sit down with them and discuss how we will approach the year," Harrison said. "The role allows a lot of creative room in terms of directing and creating relationships with media networks."