NUS Literary Society Orientation Camp

untitled3Ice-breakers, an Amazing Race and some sort of finale performance have become part of the regular repertoire of activities during orientation season at NUS. This year, the NUS Literary Society borrowed these elements and added our own literary twist to create a truly one-of-a-kind introduction to NUS—A Charlie and the Chocolate Factory-themed food trail around campus.

The NUS Literary Society is a close-knit community that consists primarily of English Literature majors but is open to bibliophiles from any discipline of study. As a society we host programs such as readings and movie screenings (often with free pizza), and annual events like the Creative Writing Competition and the Evening of Poetry and Music. The latter is a star-studded showcase of musical and literary talents from around campus. One of the biggest events on our calendar is the annual Literary Society Orientation Camp to welcome potential English Literature majors to student life at NUS.

This year, we decided to marry the Singaporean penchant for food with the traditional “Amazing Race” game, which resulted in a food trail spanning eateries around both FASS and parts of UTown. Both the freshmen and orientation group leaders were kept gastronomically full and content as they ventured around NUS sampling some of the most-loved foods on campus from the salted-caramel ice cream at Book Haven to the Japanese bento sets at The Deck. Staying true to our inner geeky bookworms, the games that the campers played at each pit stop of the food trail made use of quirky, literary elements. Whacko played with book titles and Virginia-Woolf- inspired station games lent a unique flavor to old camp staples. After eating our fill, playing literary-inspired games and exploring the campus, we headed to Town Green for the finale event of the day. Each team was tasked to come up with poems using words from a random-word generator. This was certainly no easy task given the obscurity of some of the words on the list! Fortunately, the freshmen were up to the challenge and came up with some bold and light-hearted stuff. The final challenge was to perform the poetry in front of their peers and teacher-in-charge Dr. Gilbert Yeoh. That was how Town Green became the stage for an impromptu poetry slam, a memorable ending to a one-of-a-kind orientation camp. Before we parted though, there was one last order of business for the day: goodie bags. As our camp was themed after the childhood favorite Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, it was only fitting that each camper walked away with a personalized bag full of Mars Bars, Marshmallows, Snickers and Hershey’s kisses. I think Willy Wonka would have been proud.

To find out more about the NUS Literary Society and how you can join us, do like our Facebook Page or email (Contributed by undergraduate Alisa Maya Ravindran)