author: jae won hur | executive director
All I could ask myself was, “where the hell am I?”
I’ll never forget the moment I stepped into Regina for the first time in my life. It was a frighteningly cold March evening; one of those nights that makes your bone freeze on the insides. I stepped off one of those sketchy tiny planes that take you from Calgary to Regina. Amidst all the chaotic emotions, for some reason, the airport and crew didn’t place a bridge connecting the plane to the terminal, so we had to walk across the tarmac, facing the freezing winds. All I could ask myself was, “where the hell am I?”
That was 2005 when I was ten. That was my first introduction to the City of Regina for my family and me, who had just immigrated to Regina for a better life. It’s been a whirlwind of 13 years here. Regina has allowed me to meet amazing people and friends, some becoming my second extended family. These include friends from the Regina Dolphins, Hill Business Students’ Society, and Hill JDC West. These people gave me support for each triumphant and turbulent moment in my life, for which I’m thankful.
I’m especially thankful for the opportunity this university newspaper has given me. Through my tenure as a contributor, op-ed editor, and executive director, I’ve been pushed to the limits of my personal and intellectual capabilities. Through all the long nights editing, writing op-eds or finishing employee T4s, it has taught me how to be a professional and how to persevere under every circumstance. To all my coworkers and contributors at the Carillon, thank you for your work for the paper, today and tomorrow.
As I leave the University of Regina and the Carillon, I have one narrative that keeps being repeated in my head: always to challenge the status quo. At most times in my undergrad life, I was never quite sure who I was or who I was supposed to be. Quite honestly, I’m not quite sure of that now. But what has helped me along the way is not allowing myself to become stuck in the ordinary and the status quo; challenging myself through extra-curricular within the faculty, starting to write for the paper and doing things to be a little better than yesterday. I hope to certainly continue this going into the future in my life, wherever I end up, and I hope that anyone reading can take advantage of many of the opportunities this university, including none greater opportunities than from this newspaper.
On the same note, I hope that this newspaper also adopts this mantra going forward. This newspaper has always made it its mission to challenge the status quo; making sure that we don’t settle for what currently resides, but rather, challenging the status quo for improvements within our community and university for the betterment of student lives. This has taken form in standing up for people that are marginalized within the community, writing to advocate for better maintenance of the university, and expressing concerns with many of society’s current ills. I do not doubt that this paper will continue to what it has done since its inception in 1962 – to challenge the status quo, to ensure that it serves as a voice to the students and the community to bring forth positive change.
Starting next fall, I will be enrolled in the University of Toronto’s faculty of law to pursue a legal career. I never thought, coming off that plane on that frigid March evening, that I’d be anywhere close to my dreams. Still, it seems almost surreal to me. And amidst this surreal state, I know one thing for certain: none of this would’ve been possible without the support of so many people around me. So, I’d like to thank you. To my friends and family that have always believed in me, thank you. To this university, who’s given me an academic platform to be the best I can be, thank you. To this newspaper that’s given me so much over the years, thank you. Finally, to the frigid City of Regina, who embraced a bright-eyed young Korean kid and enabled him to chase his dreams: