Students and staff of the School of Information and Communications Technology (ICT) donned white t-shirts and posed on the steps of MacDonald Hall on Sept. 21.
It was the sixth edition of the traditional “School of ICT white t-shirt day,” which is an idea spawned by ICT marketing and communications co-ordinator Mo Keshavjee.
The event was designed to foster a sense of belonging, fellowship and pride in students.
“It is to show the solidarity for the school of ICT,” said Keshavjee.
The School of ICT has 1,200 students and 16 programs scattered over four buildings on campus. Each participant was given a white t-shirt with a small ICT logo on the left sleeve to wear in the photo.
“It’s not in your face, but it shows that you belong,” said Keshavjee about the shirt.
Although it was impossible to count the numbers of those gathered in the Stan Grad Atrium, Keshavjee estimated more than 600 people took part, and that the turnout broke last year’s record.
The general atmosphere as photojournalism instructor Kevin Udahl readied his camera was one of excitement as students cheered and chattered, though some were confused as to the purpose.
“I have no idea what this is about,”said Network Technician Program (NTP) student Jeff Stokes, “We were just told to get a white t-shirt and come down here.”
Some students shared Stokes’ opinion and were confused about the whole event.
“I understand some students might not be as enthusiastic as other students, but we can’t please everybody all the time,” said Keshjavee. He did get responses which showed many understood the idea.
“Identifying a sense of community, knowing who ICT are,” said Jacqueline Fyvie, student in Exploration Information Technology (EXPT), about how she felt about the event.
First year students in Graphic Communications and Print Technology (GCPT), Carina Quiamba and Kelly Chu, felt the event was exciting.
“Feels like a big family,” said Kelly Chu. “The other people don’t know what’s going on but we’re part of it and going to enjoy it.”
Keshjavee acknowledged that it can be intimidating for first year students coming to a large institution like SAIT, and to be a part of this event will show them that they belong with a large group of fellow people.
“And if they can see that, I’m hoping it helps inspire them to know that the school of ICT cares about them,” said Keshavjee.
The group photo will be displayed in the showcase outside of ICT’s main office, and published on the SAIT website.