There are more worldviews, beliefs, and ways of life than I had ever thought there might be.

Sara Hutchinson is studying archeology and geography at the University of Lethbridge. She is from Vulcan Alberta and chose the U of L for its liberal education policy and found guidance through the Global Citizenship Cohort (GCC) where she is participating in the Challenging Worldviews theme. As we near the end of the year, we wanted to connect with Sara and learn more about her first-year experience in the GCC.

What drew you to the Global Citizenship Cohort? Why did you apply?

I applied to the GCC because I needed a little bit of guidance starting my university career. I still wasn't sure what I wanted to do with myself and I thought the GCC would give me a chance to be better engaged with my education, which it certainly has. It also helped me through some of my other worries about starting university as well (such as making friends, getting to know teachers, figuring out what classes to take).

What has been your most memorable GCC experience?

Meeting one of my best friends, Ziara! She is a ray of sunshine in my life and without the GCC I never would have met her and became such close friends with her.

Why should future students participate in the GCC?

Not only is it a great way to fill out your liberal education requirements, but it is also a fantastic way to meet new people and make friends going into university. It can be really nerve-wracking starting this new period of your life, but the GCC makes it a lot easier.

Please describe your capstone project for the GCC.

I am doing a collaborative project with a few other members of my cohort. We are making a pamphlet addressing the ways that individuals can reduce their plastic waste and will be distributing them to local business. We are going to be making suggestions like swapping out your plastic toothbrush for a compostable one and much more!

Is there someone specific who had an important influence on your uLethbridge experience? This can be a friend, mentor, staff or faculty.

D. Shawn Bubel, I took her ARKY 1000 course in the second semester of my first year and it was the reason I changed my major to archaeology, which I love with my whole heart! Also Dr. John Harding, who runs our GCC theme, is a wonderful mentor who really helped myself and many others in our cohort to feel more comfortable with university life.

What is the most important lesson you have learned this year in the GCC?

There are more worldviews, beliefs, and ways of life than I had ever thought there might be. The Challenging Worldviews theme has truly made me challenge my own worldview and I've had to reevaluate my own beliefs so many times because of it, I wouldn't want it any other way!

We are spending a lot more time at home now. What do you do to keep busy? Have you picked up any new hobbies?

I had too many hobbies before COVID and now I have just enough! I spend my time exercising, learning Italian (it was Spanish before COVID), writing/editing my first fiction novel, reading everything I can get my hands on, painting, drawing, meal prepping and, on occasions when I am a bit stressed with life, knitting.

What advice would you give to students who are about to begin their post-secondary journeys?

Explore everything you have an interest in, because you never know what is going to stick. If you think you might like something, take a class in it. You think something you learned about in class was interesting? Look it up in the library and read about it! If there was something your teacher touched on that you wanted to know more about, ask them about it. You never know what you're going to love and the extra knowledge will never hurt you.

The Faculty of Arts & Science Global Citizenship Cohort (GCC) offers a unique opportunity for students to connect some first-year courses around a common theme while interacting with a group of like-minded students. Learn more about the GCC.