Ringing in the New Year with E-Week: A Unique Perspective

By Fariha Hassan


A lot of you might have noticed a different vibe in the engineering buildings after coming back from your well-deserved break. You can almost feel the excitement, the adrenaline, the tension and the hype radiating off some of our engineering students. If you have seen students wearing different coloured Pirate of the Caribbean t-shirts with bandanas on their heads, running around campus with a grey exercise ball, don’t fret! It simply means one thing: E-Week was here!

For those who might not be aware, E-Week is a 5-day, 5-night event hosted by the EUS to promote inter-departmental friendly competition. Departments go through a series of tasks, challenges and design competitions to claim the glorious E-Week Trophy (and bragging rights) for the following 365 days. Most importantly, it is a time for all departments to get together and have a great time as one big community.

Currently in my second year in mechanical engineering, I was lucky enough to be sucked into the world of E-Week for the second time at McGill and I cannot believe that it is already over. Most importantly, I cannot believe that I ever thought of passing up the opportunity to participate at all when I was a first-year.

You see, my situation is probably not the same as most of the participants at E-Week. How? Well, I do not drink alcohol… at all.

A lot of people in the engineering faculty think of E-Week as a week where all everyone does is drink… a lot. To be honest, that is what I thought of E-Week as well. This initial image of E-Week seemed intimidating and a waste of time for a first-year university student who did not drink alcohol, which explained my reluctance to participate at first. However, being on MAME Council at the time as VP Admin, my friends on council convinced me to give it a shot. And I did. And I absolutely loved it.

I am not going to lie, E-Week is indeed a week where participants drink a lot, if they want to. There are many activities testing our drinking skills at which I simply drank water or soda (which the coords (kindly provided). In fact, I even did the MERTW pub-crawl last semester using water and soda too!

However, E-Week is also much more than that. It is a week where departments’ athletic skills are tested during the sports tournaments and the different races. It is a week where the coords challenge each team’s musical and theatrical skills during the rap, the lip sync and the improvisation battles. Teams’ creativity and design skills are tested during the design challenges, snow fort building and the creation of the team flag. Not to mention, there is the cook-off and the iron bartender to evaluate our culinary skills. More activities include video games tournaments, completing a list of scavenger hunt items, game night (including trivia), trying to steal other departments’ “damn thing” (the huge grey exercise ball you saw us carrying around), trying to steal our department’s stolen “damn thing” back, a fear of food challenge, and the list goes on! My favorite part, though, was cheering for my team (and the other teams because #weareallbestfriends).

The ambience and the energy at every single event is something I will always remember about E-Week. I am beyond grateful to have friends who always convince me to try out new things regardless of my personal decision to not drink. Without them, I would have never discovered E-Week, or MERTW, or Beer Die, or anything basically. Here is to hoping that some of you try new things too if you have ever been reluctant from doing an event because you don’t drink or “don’t drink enough”. It should never be something preventing you from having fun!

P.S. If you all were wondering, MECH won E-Week! WOOHOOOO! Huge shout out to the coords, the volunteers, the captains of all the departments and the participants for making it a memorable E-Week! See y’all next year!


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