To all the cool kids of high school: your days of bullying, wedgie-giving and illusions of grandeur are over. Yeah, that's right. In the early days of university and college, you'll start to realize that the loners, weirdos and nerds are actually way more interesting and cooler than you.
It's around this stage in life that you'll also see "coolness" is relative. Since the primary goal of a university education is to find your niche and excel at it, those once deemed "uncool" for liking things outside of the norm, and/or for earning top grades, start to become strong leaders on and off campus. It's a paradigm shift, cool kids, and it might freak you out. Now's the time to embrace the things you thought were too dorky to openly love. And to the outcasts: welcome to the best years of your life.
The easiest way to meet like-minded friends is to join clubs and societies that interest you. Most student unions at HRM universities have budgets for societies and clubs, which range from standard (religious, athletic and academic) to the truly bizarre. And if there isn't already a club suited to your unique hobby, cause or interest, you can make one. Through a quick process of ratification, any club or society can be formed, organized and funded. Then you're on your way to Coolville, population: you.
But before you go it alone, check out the list of existing clubs that be found on most student union websites. Here are some that sound really awesome.
With an active Facebook group and lots of members, the Dalhousie Anime Club meets routinely to screen anime films and television, attend comic and anime events and work on anime projects.
Party like it's 1989 with the Dal Cubing Society. There are only two current members, but the society has existed since last fall for people who have a true love for retro geometric mind puzzles.
Engineers, mechanics and planners unite on the Dal Supermileage Team and the Dalhousie Concrete Toboggan Team, which both design and build structures for national races and competitions.
Most schools with a Classics program have an affiliated club: SMU's The Classics Society, Dal's undergrad Classics Society and grad group Kylix and the Cult of Classics at the University of King's College. From mock-Olympics to movie nights to reading groups, all friends, Romans and countrymen are welcome.
For the literary set, The King's Haliburton Society at King's is the oldest literary society in North America (#illuminati). There's also the Quintillian Society at King's, as well as theory and reading collectives at NSCAD, Dalhousie and SMU. Also, campus newspapers like Dalhousie's Gazette, The Watch at King's and SMU's The Journal offer ample opportunities for writing, reporting, editing, photography and sales.
The Nova Scotia Community Colleges offer the Student Ambassador Program to keeners. Ambassadors are leaders, conduits and event organizers at the NSCC campuses and in the wider community. As a student at any post-secondary institution, you're a member of a union by default! So if you like governance, policy and student rights, the DSU, the KSU, SMUSA, SUNSCAD, the MSVUSU and the NSCCSA (which you can read more about on page 11) all have annually elected and hired positions at varying levels of responsibility.