URSU VIP Gives Amazing Access and Empowering Experience

Volunteer program helps students level up their campus life

URSU VIPs take a quick selfie during URSU Mental Wellness Week 2018.

Navigating a new environment can be scary and getting to know people outside of class can be intimidating. Once a person overcomes these fears, however, they often find campus life to be exciting and the experience of going to university to be a rewarding one. To this end, the University of Regina Students’ Union offers its Volunteer Incentive Program (VIP) to help students connect with their campus by volunteering with their Students’ Union. VIPs work with the staff of your Students Union to put on exciting events, share crucial campaigns, and tell students about essentials services.

“For some, being sociable and outgoing comes naturally; for others it is hard to achieve,” shares current VIP Edgar Martinez. “Being a VIP gives me the opportunity to work on my ‘better face’ not only because it is useful but because it shows my commitment to the volunteer program.”

Edgar Martinez (right) greets students during Welcome Week 2019.

“Receiving help or accepting it is not easy. People can be shy, or ashamed to say, ‘I want to know more.’ but I believe that helping students with a positive and energetic attitude creates a more comfortable environment for everyone who needs the help.”

“The URSU VIP program was fundamental in helping me make connections in university,” says former VIP Chandler Hack. “It opened up and built a sense of community in my university experience.”

Chandler Hack (right) with a fellow VIP member and with URSU VP Student Affairs Harmeet Singh during an URSU Threads event.

Being a member of URSU VIP also gives one the chance to gain leadership experience, and participants receive a leadership certificate and reference letter at the end of term.

“I got involved with the URSU Volunteer Incentive Program when I got selected to be the first URSU VIP Coordinator and it was a new challenge for me but still was an amazing experience,” says former VIP Coordinator Meshaal Dossary. “The position made me improve my organizational and networking skills but also made me gain new leadership skills.”

Former VIP Volunteer Coordinator Meshaal Dossary.

Another valuable aspect of the program is that by working with URSU staff and management, students can become familiar with the operations and environment of the URSU, which can be beneficial when applying for employment or running in an election.

“The Students’ Union staff are some of the most accepting and approachable people I’ve ever met before and will help get you settled into a role that you are interested in,” says former VIP and former URSU Arts Students Director Colin Keith. “As an URSU VIP, I formed some of the best friendships I have today with like-minded people I otherwise wouldn’t have met.”

Colin Keith (right) with URSU VP Student Affairs Harmeet Singh during URSU Mental Wellness Week 2019.

Colin Keith (left) receives his VIP certificate from Volunteer Coordinator Meshaal Dossary.

“Volunteering is absolutely the best way to meet people in your community and always results in everlasting friendships.”

After someone has volunteered thirty (30) hours, they can get free access to certain events on campus or at The Owl. “I got to meet special guests and was able to chat with and assist fellow students,” adds Keith. “Which helped me develop leadership qualities and a gave me a sense of fulfillment.”

To top it all off, VIPs have exclusive opportunities to win exciting prizes including a MacBook! The more events or hours a VIP puts in, the more chances they get to win sweet swag from their Students’ Union.

URSU VIPs helping with admission and raffle entries during URSU Mental Wellness Week 2019.

If you’re looking for a great experience where you’ll be earning volunteer hours, gaining valuable insight, and helping students enjoy our campus and community, then URSU VIP is for you. More than a job the VIP is a jumping off point to more events and richer experiences on and off campus. You also get the added benefit of assisting those lost students who might be in the same situation you were once, before you became an URSU VIP.

“After some volunteering, it is a nice feeling when people recognize you as a ‘beacon of help’. Whether students just say hello to you in the hallways or stop to ask you more questions, it is a pleasant and rewarding feeling,” says Martinez. “If more people were involved in the VIP program, this sense of a comfortable environment would spread all around campus, so I urge students, especially new ones, to sign up.”

Edgar Martinez (second from left) with students during Welcome Week 2019.

For more information on URSU VIP please visit ursu.ca/vip