Our college’s Freshmen Orientation Camp (FOC), held from 24th to 27th July, was indeed a huge success; and we owe it all to the hard work of the organising committee and seniors involved, be it as orientation group leaders or councillors. Phua Keng Yung, project director for this year’s FOC, reflects on the planning process:
“When I signed up for FOC PD just little less than a year ago, I would never have expected my FOC Journey to have been such a tumultuous one. When I look back on my journey, despite all the pain and frustration, I wouldn’t change a single thing about my journey, for through this colossal project I have found a family and experienced so many crazy and awesome moments that I never knew I could have in such a short period of time.
Having come into the appointment with little to no experience leading a large team, I was apprehensive as it was the first time that I would be responsible for such a huge project that could and would influence the lives of many incoming CAPTains. The weight of the responsibility bore down on me, and although I began with the intention of actively seeking to change the established camp structure to provide a greater experience but as we progressed, the Directors failed to actively do so, partly due to our busy schedule and partly due to our going through of the planning motion without active thought being put into the process. In semester 2, my VPDs suddenly arranged an urgent meeting to speak about the structure as they realised that we should have put in more thought about the structure of the camp instead of blindly following the established structure. That moment, I finally understood in reason and practice what it meant to think out of the box. By breaking the mood, we removed all constraints and allowed ourselves to dream and allowed ourselves to actually address the real problems at hand. That moment, I knew that I would forever be indebted to my VPDs, Daniel and Genevieve.
The description of any Project Director appointment will be filled with the words “Liaison” or something to that effect. Toward the end of semester 2, the reason why such a term was included hit me like a truck. I was overwhelmed with coordination, requests and many other groups of CAPTains and fellows to engage. Throughout this process, I had to balance the welfare of my committee, the interests of my committee against the various requests. Being a person who would normally try to accommodate requests, this process of learning to be firm and ensure that the voices of the CAPTains in the committee were heard was a difficult process. Nonetheless, throughout this process, I learnt the importance of being firm and the importance of handling relationships with care.
These are just 2 of the many lessons I learnt working alongside the awesome people of FOC Organising Committee 2018. Without their hard work and effort FOC would not have been anywhere close to the way it was. I couldn’t have asked for a better experience, and more importantly a family that I wouldn’t trade for any other.”
Organising the camp was certainly not an easy task, but the effort amounted to an experience that was truly fulfilling for both seniors and freshmen alike. Finally, we also owe a big thank you to the freshmen as the camp would not have been complete without your enthusiastic participation and involvement. May the friendships we forged during FOC grow stronger as we embark on the new academic year together as one CAPT family.