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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…)

Deciding How Many Classes to Take

 

 The decision of how many classes to take is a personal one. After all, you know you best. How many courses you take depends on a myriad of factors: your other commitments, how many electives you intend to take, how difficult your classes will be this semester, and your immigration status.

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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…)

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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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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Getting to Know Your Professors

 As a student, especially one new to university, it can be daunting to try and get to know your professors. They may seem intimidating and unapproachable as experts in their field. On top of this, introductory classes are often quite large which can be overwhelming.

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Three Easy Changes to Improve Your Essay

Ever feel totally lost/confused/frustrated when attempting to write a paper? Or even worse, when you finally get the graded version back? Although the majority of the time your paper quality depends on the amount of time you’re willing to put into it, a few small adjustments can go a long way. Here are three easy tips and tricks anyone can use from your friendly neighborhood English major: (more…)

What To Do?

As I’m approaching the end of my degree, the question of what lies next pops into my head more and more often. It was much easier to push out of my mind when I was younger since having a career was more of an abstract concept than a possible reality. My plans for life were sequential: finish high school then CEGEP then university. But the end is creeping closer, bringing many more anxieties to light, variables I did not have to think about in the past. My situation is a ubiquitous one, looming over many students. (more…)

Making the Case for Multiple Mentors

Higher education necessitates academic mentorship. At the graduate level, it is often compulsory. But what about mentorship for those on non-academic career paths? As academic mentorship is a cornerstone of academic success, I propose that non-academic mentors are equally as important for career success outside of the academy. Given that less than 20% of PhD holders in Canada will find tenure-track positions (Conference Board of Canada, 2015), I think it’s time to mentor up. (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…)

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