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Coronavirus

The Coronavirus pandemic seems to have hit Montreal. With classes canceled today, students are left to wonder what the future holds for the semester. Things seem to have escalated quickly with 17 confirmed cases as of now. Then this morning classes were suspended for two weeks. At this time, I do not believe there has been any announcement as to how the semester will proceed. It is probably still a good idea to keep up with classwork at home and regularly check your email to stay informed. Reddit’s McGill page has a Coronavirus mega thread that is being updated as information becomes available.

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Should You Get a Pet?

For many, university is the first time young people live away from home. This time is filled with adjustments and difficulties that come with adulthood. You might be new to Montreal or Canada, not used to the rigors of academia, and having trouble learning to cook and clean. Adjusting to a new city, a new school, and learning to take care of yourself is stressful. To cope with these strains, many people consider getting a pet during their time at university. However, caring for an animal can be stressful and difficult in conjunction with the demands of school. It can also be a wonderful experience that allows you to bond with and care for another being.

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Taking University Slowly?

During a seminar discussion recently, I had a professor tell me that university is a luxury. His comment baffled me: how had I never considered it that way? Maybe it’s hard to consider something that is so time-consuming and at times incredibly frustrating and difficult as the epitome of comfort. But it got me thinking: why are we as students so consistently eager to escape? Whether it’s our craving for the weekend or our next break or even graduation – what is it that contributes to our overwhelming sense of urgency to distance ourselves from university? (more…)

Renting Season !!

Winter semester: subzero temperatures, reading week (!!!), the light at the end of the tunnel that is summer vacation and, for many, competing with fellow students as you scour for the perfect apartment. The task is obviously daunting – especially for first-time (or even second-time) renters. Here are a few things to keep at the front of your mind as you search for the ultimate apartment: (more…)

Thoughts on Summer Activities

Summer might feel like a far way off, but it’ll be here soon. As the semester progresses, it’s a good idea to think about what you want to do during the summer. Every summer I try to outline what I want to try and do and then go about accomplishing those goals. Sometimes my goals change during the summer, or I don’t quite get where I want to be, but that’s ok.  (more…)

Building Ties With Your Professors

Building relationships within university circles can be endlessly useful. These relationships could open doors for various opportunities inside and outside of campus, allow you to gain valuable work, volunteer or research experience and provide you with solid references for your post-graduation plans, whether that be straight to work, grad school, volunteering etc. Close ties with a professor is arguably the most coveted asset one could have; professors offer years of advice and experience to students as well as proving a gateway to significant new opportunities. Many students find internship or research opportunities through their professors, get a chance to work with them or just generally develop closer ties, and thus gain more knowledge from their supervisors. (more…)

Welcome back to school!

The beginning of the semester is a great time to figure out what courses you want to take and think about what opportunities you want to explore. I know the winter semester can be rough. It’s cold, the days are short, and the break probably wasn’t long enough. But Montreal is a great place to have winter. The city has plenty of activities like snow shoe-ing or just fun Montreal excursions like thrift shopping. It’s really nice to be somewhere that doesn’t completely shut down just because it snows.  (more…)

Things to Look for in a Job

Right now I’m working on my post-grad job hunt which can be really stressful and overwhelming. I’ve gotten a lot of good advice from people I’ve worked with and met along the way. Something I’m often told is to think about where I want to be or who I want to be like and then see if where I could possibly work fits that.  (more…)

Ways to Handle Interview Jitters

Interviews can be incredibly nerve-wracking. While most situations where you’re under pressure are stressful, it is possible to not be overwhelmed by it. In my experience, it’s a good idea to prep as much as you can. That doesn’t mean you should memorize your answers or try to know everything they’re going to ask, but it’s a good idea to know what you want to communicate to them. What’s something important about you that a hiring manager should know? In what ways can you uniquely contribute to their team?  (more…)

Let’s Talk Graduation

Winter semester can be incredibly hectic for those of us expecting to graduate come April: moving out, meeting program requirements, deciding on firm post-grad plans, searching for and applying to jobs, internships or grad schools etc. Unfortunately, in the thrill of it all it can be easy to overlook the small steps needed to ensure graduation and convocation go more or less seamlessly. As exam season draws to a close, take a few moments of your much-needed time off to make sure you meet all these small, but ridiculously significant, steps toward graduation.

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