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REVIEW – SKILLS21

Throughout this past year, I’ve attended my first (and perhaps last) set of SKILLS21 workshops. For those not familiar with this undergraduate program, SKILLS21 “aims to provide students with opportunities to become contributing global citizens in the 21st century.” (Um, woah there.) It includes workshops from five different areas (Citizenship, Collaboration, Discovery, Leadership and Wellbeing).

After completing the “Wellbeing” stream in addition to attending several workshops from other streams, I’ve put together an honest review of my participation experience.

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Why I ❤️ McGill

Below you’ll find the two simple reasons that seriously make my experience here 1000 times more enjoyable. These two student matching programs have not only made making friends 1000 times easier since I began my studies here last year, but they have taught me that no matter how different from each other we may seem to be (ethnically/politically/personality wise), we are all students in the exact same situation.

This program matches you with an incoming international student, and it is then your responsibility to help them with their transition to their new life in Montreal. In just one year of volunteering with the program, I’ve met, and even become close friends with kids from Peru, the Philippines, Australia (Adelaide and Melbourne), China, France, South Korea, and Pakistan. Oh, and did I forget to say Kentucky? The program also hosts events throughout the school year, all of which are just as fun as your individual buddy meetups.

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Bucket List

Increase your Worldliness, Save Money, and Check in with Yourself

  • Attend an advance movie screening. Back in December, I sat in on the Montreal premier of On the Basis of Sex. I got my tickets through the History Students’ Association of McGill, but if you keep an eye on this page, it won’t be long before you’ll have experienced viewing a film before its Canadian release date.
  • Send a message/suggestion/opinion/remark to the Mayor of Montreal. Whether this has only been your city for one year or twenty-one years, you can’t not have ANYTHING to say to her. Back in November, I proposed an idea pertaining to our public transport system, and I received a response within a month’s time. Express yourself!

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I Bet Half of You Haven’t Heard of…

They’ll match you up with a student who has mastered the course you’re currently in. Think you’re acing the class and the idea of someone helping you for $18 is silly? Think again. The mere act of sitting down to discuss and review even the material that you feel comfortable with is exactly what you’ll thank yourself for when you get to your final exam.

*Newly admitted undergraduate students have their first session free.

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REVIEW – SSMU Mini Course: Hatha Yoga

 


Last semester, I participated in a non-credit course offered by the Student’s Society of McGill University.

As the autumn air was approaching, I found myself browsing the list of mini courses that would be offered in the coming weeks. As soon as my eyes caught sight of the Saturday morning yoga class, I was headed to the SSMU office with my sixty five dollars.

NB: Although one’s experience in any mini course entirely depends on the instructor and the group of individuals taking that course, I thought you might be interested in reading about my adventure in yoga this past Fall term.

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To Do Before the Dreadful 7th of January

And head into the new year with this commercial in mind. Like seriously, was it made especially for students like us who have “no time for anything” yet spend hours mindlessly scrolling on our phones?

  • Subscribe to a new podcast.

Get hooked! Find one you’ll want listen to on your way to class or on your way home from that long day. You’d be surprised how relaxing it could be and how it could give you the ability to say “Hey, I really didn’t know that!” on a weekly basis.

My personal favorite: Past Present

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Report is due, but don’t panic!

Credit to: Calvin and Hobbes (Scientific Setbacks)

As graduate students, we are often assigned teaching jobs, most commonly lab and course TAs. I really enjoyed my time with students when we did lab work together (I’m a lab TA), and we chitchatted about life, study, weather, or  future. My colleagues have various working styles, but in general we are a bunch of cooperative ants focusing on our tasks. On the other hand, grading several dozens of lab reports is the most painful moment at the end of every experiment cycle – we are sad to see people forgetting what we emphasized during the experiment, not double-checking the formatting, giving us blah-blahs without even reading the background information… (more…)

Wake up before the semester starts!

It is the time! We are either coming or returning to the McGill campus, and I hope everyone has enjoyed a great summer no matter you were studying, travelling, working, volunteering, or just snoozing with some chill drinks at the backyard. However, I would like to remind you something before we sit in the lecture room. (more…)

Municipal Elections Matter, Part 3: Women and Municipal Politics

It is commonly thought that women are more successful in municipal politics than federal or provincial politics. This conclusion is reached since municipal elections are typically less competitive and their campaigns presumed to be less costly. [1] At the same time, women may be at a disadvantage because of how the media frames female candidates or if voters perceive politics as ‘male sphere’.[2] Erin Tolley and Mireille Paquette explored to effect of gender in the 2017 race for mayor of Montreal between Denis Coderre and Valérie Plante.[3]With a rising number of women stepping up to run for office in Canada and the United States, it is interesting to understand what barriers exist or are being challenged.

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Municipal Elections Matter, Part 2: Nationalism and Party Identification

When voting, is your decision something based on a singular issue or is it about how much you identify with the party? Perhaps one issue shapes the entire party landscape? This question is fundamental to many who study political science, but until attending CMES, I had no idea that municipal politics were a field of study. In all my introductory political science courses at McGill, the topic was never touched upon. Thus, I jumped at the opportunity to learn more about the study of municipal politics, which has been studied in Canada for many years. In this post, I will focus on how municipal politics interact with Quebec nationalism, an issue Canada has worked with and around since the British won the Seven Years’ War.[1] (more…)

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