Students were able to participate in events hosted by UOSU and their respective student associations
For the first time since the pandemic, 101 Week featured mostly in-person activities, with some events offered virtually online or through live stream.
101 Week is coordinated by the University of Ottawa Students’ Union (UOSU) with the goal to help new students navigate campus, learn how to balance their social life with classes, and become more familiar with the resources made available to them by the U of O.
The activities kicked off with the opening ceremonies and scavenger hunt on Sept. 4. The next morning, Francophone students participated in an ice-breaker session on Zoom. All the while, clubs and associations set up display tables along Grande Alley for the first day of the Clubs Fair. In the evening, the mandatory Take Back the Night event raised awareness for sexual violence on campus and encouraged students to advocate for better support for survivors.
Shinerama — Canada’s largest post-secondary fundraiser for cystic fibrosis — was once again a part of the schedule. On Sept. 7, students attended a drag show on the University Centre terrace featuring Ottawa drag queen Holli Cow, and later, performances by Canadian DJs to mark the first day of classes.
Students were also able to participate in events organized by their respective Recognized Student Government (RSG) at an additional cost.
Sana Chiali, a first-year psychology student, felt this was a great way to meet people and form connections with others in her program. She was glad most of the activities were in-person, “because you can’t form the same kinds of relationships online.”
In order to participate, ‘101-ers’ must purchase a bracelet and kit from UOSU or through their RSG. These kits include a t-shirt, a 101 Week itinerary, U of O merch, and a number of other goodies and trinkets.
“One thing that we thought was a bit weird was how they were giving us shot glasses in our swag bag,” said Halla Little, another first-year student. “But, other than that, it was pretty good.”
First-year political science student Miriam Abdalla added, “I think a lot of the activities are actually really fun. It would be nice if slightly fewer of them were partying and late-night, because not all of us can or want to do that — whether it’s for religious or personal reasons, right?”
Despite these minor frustrations, Little and Abdalla enjoyed most of the activities, though they felt some were disorganized and more food should have been offered to students throughout the week.
“I do wish it was slightly more clear with a lot of the organizing and where we’re supposed to be,” said Little.
“It would be cool to have more food. We’re hungry,” Abdalla added with a laugh.
101 Week concluded with the Women’s Rugby home opener against Université de Montréal on Sept. 10, which the Gee-Gees won 34-0.