Six NYIT students traveled to Syracuse, N.Y., from Oct. 11 to 13 to attend the Association for the Promotion of Campus Activities (APCA) Northeast Regional Conference. They were accompanied by Mehtap Donuk, director of student activities and leadership development at NYIT-Old Westbury, and APCA Northeast regional coordinator. APCA has been around since 1994 helping college students across America with their programming needs.
Students included Greek Life Council e-board members Jatinder Saini, Prattasha Paul, Bernadette Connell, Brian Church, and Pooja Berdia as well as Navpreet Sachdev, president of the NYIT-Old Westbury Campus Programing Board and student delegate for the APCA Northeast region. They were nominated and elected to be national interns for the conference and assisted with registration, announcing national speakers, running icebreakers, and leading roundtable discussions. Brian Church, who works as a student employee in NYIT's Academic Computing Lab, was also asked to work with the conference's professional stage management staff members, who were so impressed with his contributions that they offered him a job on the spot to travel the country with them in summer 2014.
During the conference, students listened to presentations by expert speakers and student affair mentors, attended talent showcases, and networked with vendors. "I was given the opportunity to learn from poets, artists, comedians, and professional speakers about myself and more importantly about the world," said Berdia.
In addition, they chose different educational sessions to attend such as overcoming adversity, Greek life roundtable, facilitating great discussions from activity to learning, and making any space a programming space.
"For us as student leaders to engage our campus, we need to have the right attitude and a lot of desire to make change," said Sachdev. "We have to take charge and set out to achieve our goals. We can't just hand out fliers and expect students to go to an event. It takes a lot more, and it starts with creating bonds with the people on campus."
Donuk added, "I'm a proud advisor because our students shine everywhere they go and have so much school pride!"