The Evening My Mother and I First Walked into the SMU Hall

By Naomi Lim Bao Bao, Year 2 Undergraduate, SMU School of Law

If there is one thing I remember distinctly about SMU Parents’ Day 2017 as an incoming freshman, it was the moment after SMU Dean of Students Professor Paulin Straughan had made her speech, when my mother turned to me and said, “Yup, we chose the right school.”


Prof Paulin Straughan at SMU Parents' Day 2017

Professor Paulin Straughan, SMU Dean of Students, delivers her address at the Law faculty run for SMU Parents’ Day 2017


Joining the Corps

My personal experience interacting with the seniors in SMU had really helped me make an informed decision about which university to join. There was something special about hearing from students who were in the same shoes that I was looking to fill—they knew my concerns even before I’d spoken them.

Interestingly, this was the same way my mother felt after attending SMU Parents’ Day. We were both a little anxious about me starting University, but walking out of the School of Law building after the event, we felt that our concerns had been thoroughly anticipated, understood, and addressed.

It was with this experience still fresh in my mind as I entered my first year of university that decided to join SMU Ambassadorial Corps (ASMU)—the student group leading the annual signature event, SMU Parents’ Day.  I joined ASMU in hopes of getting the chance to meet and guide SMU’s prospective students, to imbue the sense of reassurance that I had gotten from SMU Parents’ Day, amongst other initiatives as a student Ambassador.


Being passed the baton

Ever since I became an Ambassador, I’ve been inspired by the continual commitment to the high standards and professionalism that marks this very event. As a freshly matriculated student, I remember being confused when I found out that it was an event created and organised by students. It seemed far more polished than any student-organised event I had attended before.

Now as part of the Organising Committee, I try to keep these memories of my own SMU Parents’ Day in mind. We always seek to keep in view the purpose of the event—to reassure parents that SMU is not just the “right” choice for their child, but truly a place where students can find support for everything they aspire to do and achieve, so that they have the ability to chart their own paths and have a fulfilling university journey. That’s why we invite so many key stakeholders from the SMU community—faculty, staff, offices, alumni, and the student body—to attend our event to provide a true breadth of perspectives.


Looking back and looking ahead

Personally, my goal for this year’s rendition of SMU Parents’ Day, is to help ease the concerns of freshmen and their parents, who may be as anxious as I was a year ago. I hope that they will leave the event with a clearer picture of life at SMU and an excitement for the new beginning ahead.


16th batch of SMU Ambassadors

The 16th batch of Ambassadors at dinner. Naomi seated second from right.


This goal is what tides me through the stress of pulling this event together.

As a junior Marketing In-Charge, it’s been a steep learning curve for me, dabbling in areas like video-making, which I have little experience in. Although balancing this with other commitments has been a challenge, I find myself learning and growing in so many ways.

To me, along with the friendships forged, and the successes and difficulties that bring us together, it is this kind of self-development that defines a university experience. I’ll always look back fondly at how I excitedly started this journey a year ago—that evening when my mother and I first walked into the SMU Hall.


Find out more about the schedule for upcoming SMU Parents’ Day sessions here