BGS in Education
When it came time to apply for university, undergraduate student Emerly Liu knew SFU was the right place for her. But she didn’t anticipate just how rewarding the experience would be.
Despite having to relocate from Vancouver Island, Emerly always had her sights set on attending Simon Fraser University.
“Going through school, I was always interested in SFU and doing the Professional Development Program”, says Liu. “My sister went to SFU and I spoke to some of my teachers who had completed the program and it felt like the right choice”.
Following her dream of becoming an elementary school teacher, Emerly enrolled in the Bachelor of General Studies in Education (BGS) through the Faculty of Education — a popular pathway to the PDP. Now in her fourth year, she is currently completing minors in Learning and Development Disabilities, Early Learning and Curriculum and Instruction.
“I love the double-minor option and the flexibility it gives you to pursue lots of subjects inside and outside of the faculty. I decided on doing three education minors that I felt would help me as a teacher.”
While Emerly says she has enjoyed every aspect of her studies, the chance to engage with the community outside of the classroom has been the real highlight of her student experience.
“The first year was really pivotal for me,” says Liu. “I had just moved here and I wanted to meet new people. Welcome Day was a real catalyst. The people I met have become my SFU family.”
Determined to make the most of every opportunity, Emerly signed-up for the Faculty of Education’s popular peer mentor program. She also joined the Education Student Association (ESA), eventually becoming the ESA President.
“I’m not sure how I began my roles. I just know that one thing led to another. It’s people who drive me. Seeing other people take leadership inspired and motivated me to do more.”
As President of the ESA, Emerly began attending faculty council meetings as a student representative. She was elected as an education student representative for the Simon Fraser Student Society (SFSS) in her third year.
“Having the opportunity to participate in university affairs and engage with the faculty has helped me understand what students can do to affect change.”
“I’ve been able to work with the Dean and I helped write part of the 5-year academic plan that was focused on the student experience. It’s a progressive faculty and they listen to the student voices.”
When asked what advice she’d give to students thinking of coming to the university and the Faculty of Education, Emerly says it’s important to try everything at least once.
“Through my journey, I’ve learned that one opportunity connects to another. If you take that leap of faith and get outside of your comfort zone, you’ll end up doing things you never could have imagined that foster personal and professional development.”