On September 16th, we held our annual Welcome Back Picnic which was quite the hotspot on campus that day. A lot of people stopped by just to get their hands on our coveted #WhyEngineering shirts but even so, throughout the event, there was a sense of community that was both seen and felt.
Each year it seems like our picnic has more and more people and this year was no different. Our event garnered the attention of students walking to class who weren’t even engineering majors. With so many people, students were able to network and connect with other students within our college, but because of the outreach, they were also able to meet students in other colleges.
Of course our delicious food might have had something to do with the attraction of so many students, but nonetheless, it was great to see not only our whole college come together, but to see other students interact with us. As for our highly desired t-shirts, we continued our #WhyIWill campaign and included the pledge on the shirts this year. With this campaign, we acknowledge that engineering is a hard field to study but that it’s okay for students to think it’s hard-that’s what makes engineers such a novelty. To “earn” their shirts, students had to make a post on one of their social media accounts using our hashtag #WhyEngineering and say why they chose to pursue a career in engineering. For our students of other colleges, we made them post why engineering is the best (because it is) in order to receive their shirt.
Saying this year’s picnic was a success is a huge understatement. We were able to welcome new students to the college, returning students were reconnected with each other, and some traditions were carried on from previous years. Everyone left full of hamburgers and hot dogs, and of course full of excitement for another great year with NIU CEET!