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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…)

Best Campus Study Spots

The general mood of January seems to be busy and cramped: the airports, the gym, classes during Add/Drop that force you into a level of punctuality you didn’t think possible with the ubiquitous threat of sitting on the staircase floor in the lecture hall. My point is this: finding a calm, quiet atmosphere to destress, despite our January skepticism, is not impossible on campus. In fact, these are the best spots to study, read, relax or even (discreetly) eat on campus, not only in January, but year-round. (more…)

Balancing the Job Hunt with Final Exams

For those of you on the search for a job, or even an internship, this post may be particularly applicable. It can be difficult to balance these professional aspirations with school work during the course of the academic year; let alone during the final exam period. If an opportunity appears, even if it is during finals, it is often to your benefit to take it. Assuming you can make the time and balance your academic responsibilities, then it is always a good idea to do so. After all, the interview or chat may not always be on offer.

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Focus

October is around the corner, and now is the time to focus in on what is important. Staying on top of course work will prevent feeling overwhelmed, especially if you are working and/or volunteering at the same time. Time management can help manage your day, and help you figure out what is the most important task to complete that day. Writing to-do lists the night before will help you have a clear understanding of what you will have to complete the next day, and they really help me stay organized. (more…)

Summer Withdrawals & How to Defeat Them

Back to school – we all know the feeling. Whether you spent your entire summer travelling and relaxing, or whether you were slaving away at a job, internship or volunteer position, there’s a certain panic that accompanies the end of summer and the transition back to school life. The chilling expectation of winter weather aside, fall semester can be intimidating in a way that winter semester often isn’t: your brain isn’t functioning like it used to, you’re reading slower, your handwriting is way messier and there is no reading week to look forward to. Fall semester, however, is the best time to get active both on and off campus! Here are some ways to maximize your first few months back: (more…)

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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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…)

Book Review: “Mind Gym”, Part 1

You might find Mind Gym: An Athlete’s Guide to Inner Excellence[1] in the sports section or the self-help section, depending on the bookstore. Published in 2001, Mind Gym was written by sports psychologist Gary Mack to show regular people how the mind influences athletic performance. The book is organized into 40 chapters which end with short exercises to improve the mental habits which help performers succeed. Mack demonstrates the impacts of stress and motivation on success using examples from sports. However, his recommendations apply to elite athletes and regular people alike. (more…)

Finding Happiness

http://www.finerminds.com/happiness/create-happiness-in-hopeless-situations

How to find happiness has been one of the most fundamental questions since the beginning of humanity. Today, behavior scientists are tackling this question, studying what makes us happy and what doesn’t. While happiness seems like an elusive, relative concept, there is a science of happiness. And to become more adept at staying happier for longer, understanding the nature of happiness is key.

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