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My $0.02 Worth to an Incoming Student

Hello new McGill student that has stumbled upon this blog! First and foremost, I want to say congratulations on your acceptance to McGill – I hope you find everything and more that you’re looking for from a university experience at McGill. I know that you’re probably being bombarded with e-mails about orientation sessions and all the glorious events that are coming up. Or you could be a not-typical-first-year-student; maybe you’re on exchange, or just testing the waters for a year, or a third-year student that just switched into McGill. Whatever the case, I’m sure the process of coming to McGill is quite heavy. From planning courses to planning housing to planning food, there’s a lot to think about. But there might also be some general things that you’ll want to know. Here are some things I wish I was more familiar with when I first joined the McGill environment:   (more…)

Finding Extracurricular Activities at McGill

McGill has a plethora of extracurricular activities. From charity organizations to academic clubs, we’ve pretty much got a range of it all – so much so that you should be able to find at LEAST one club that suits your interests. However, a wide range of activities to choose from means a wide range of application methods to go through. Without knowing where to look, you might not be able to find the ideal activity for you – even though it probably does exist. Here are some general platforms that I’ve found helped me discover different extracurricular opportunities.

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Planning My Trip To Japan

So I am about to embark on a trip alone to Japan for about 6 days. I will go alone. I have been discussing thoroughly with my father for preparations. My father has a lot of experience with planning trips and traveling abroad. He has been giving me a lot of tips.

After the ticket was booked, I had to plan myself which cities I would visit and how many days. I then looked for either hotels or hostels to book. Location was important. Since Japan has a very excellent transportation system, they have a bullet train (goes up to speeds of 300 km/h) which allows you to travel Japan in a very fast time. I looked for hostels or hotels near bullet train stations as I would arrive at cities using bullet trains.

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Extracurricular Activities Experience

I wanted to talk about my experience participating in club activities in my first year. I was heavily involved in a club called the Foundation for International Medical Relief of Children. This club had a committee called the Community Involvement Committee of which I was part of. The main goal of this committee was to reach out to the community and fundraise for the community. One of the major activities which we did was a clothing drive in the fall semester. It took a lot of planning and execution required commitment.

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Scholarships 101

Receiving a scholarship can be a way to ease financial stress, get recognition for your work, boost your CV, and learn more about yourself. Whether you’re in financial need or not, the amount of work needed to qualify for scholarships can sometimes be discouraging. However, scholarships have varying levels of effort and reward. Taking the time to research scholarships—and to find out whether it’s worth your time and effort—is the first step in getting the scholarship of your dreams. Here are my tips to help you get started.

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The Age of Technology

Technology is incredibly convenient in many different ways. It provides an efficient method of long-distance communication, it allows for widespread access to information, and it’s a cool place to share our selfies. But as amazing as technology is, it also can be extremely distracting. Maybe not everyone feels this way, but I know firsthand that technology can be an impediment to productivity. I don’t think I could ever accurately claim that I’ve found a solution to that, but over the last few years I’ve learned some ways to manage technology-related distractions. (more…)

How to Capture a Dream

Life has been very good to me lately. Several things that I only dared to imagine are now realities. One of these dreams is a paid job as a writer with a flexible schedule. Here, I try to identify the key moments that helped to manifest this vision into reality.

Dreaming is part of the work. It’s almost impossible to work towards something that you cannot envision. For me, this dreaming was simply wanting to be a skilled writer. I felt my writing skills had stopped improving since high school. So, as soon as I had sufficient free time and mental space, I started looking for opportunities to write within the McGill community. (more…)

Doing the Research

Whether you’re writing a new version of your CV or getting ready for an interview, it’s always worth preparing yourself by doing research or seeing an advisor. McGill has a wide set of resources to help students present themselves in an ideal way to employers or anyone else. If you need to write a cover letter or efficiently search for jobs, McGill resources—like CaPS or faculty-specific resources and advisors—can help you get where you need to be. Here are the resources that I’ve found most helpful.

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Research Retreat Experience

I just returned from a 2 day research retreat with the Anatomy and Cell Biology department and I would like to detail some of my experiences there. The retreat was at a hotel 50 minutes by car away from downtown Montreal. As soon as we got there, we checked in (but our rooms weren’t ready yet), and the research talks would immediately start. The chair of the department gave an opening (which I missed as I was in line for check in), then a professor talked about the Naylor Report. This report basically showed that funding for research in Canada was decreasing and that we were declining in our competitiveness compared to other countries. It would be important for all of those interested in pursuing a career in research or are already in research to write letters to their MPs or even try to get the attention of the Minister of Science before the budget in 2018 is decided.

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Getting Work Done in the Summer

Whether you’re working on personal projects, applying for scholarships, or preparing for applications in the fall, getting things accomplished in the summer can be a difficult task. With the sun finally coming out and festivals left and right, distractions often act as roadblocks between you and your work goal. Here’s how I try to keep on top of things, despite sometimes giving in to the summer temptations (more…)

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