Ananya (Year 3)
What made you choose this institution over all others? Did the university exceed your expectations?
The main reason I picked UofT over my other college acceptances was because the university is located in the middle of Toronto. Of course, the research opportunities, professors and academic reputation are unmatched, but walking back from class through downtown and heading to Nathan Phillips Square after a hard day's work to ice skate is what really made me treasure my experience here. Staying in Downtown, I got the opportunity to experience the city and that is what helped me cope with the transition.
Do you have any lingering thoughts or regrets in your year as a whole (ex; application process, mistakes going into first year). If so, describe them.
Yes, I regret not working as hard as I could in my first semester. I remember taking it too easy and thinking if I could have one of the two worlds, I'd prefer enjoying myself over working hard. I later realized it's easy to get the best of both worlds and manage a good GPA while enjoying yourself.
Briefly describe the academic rigour of your program (in terms of competitiveness, courses, professors, etc.)
UofT is extremely rigorous academically, but over this past year, I have realized it's not too hard to manage it. The professors and their office hours are extremely helpful if you don't understand something in class and if you know the course material well, it's not too hard to score well and ultimately get good grades in your courses.
Describe the social life at your campus based on your own experiences (making friends, clubs + extracurriculars, party culture etc.)
I think everyone should join a club and there are so many that it's not hard finding one that you'd be interested in. If you stay in res, you'll get the entire experience and be able to party more, but the party life in Toronto is pretty good so the weekends will not be dry.
List three effective study techniques and/or habits:
Paying attention in class (the professors are so good it isn't even that hard)
Being consistent with my work (it's not fun to finish your assignment over an all nighter)
Taking help from my friends or Office hours (being shy does no one any good)
List three pieces of advice for first-year students:
Don't be afraid to put yourself out there and introduce yourself to people (remember everyone is there to make friends)
Find the perfect balance and do not compromise on academics (you CAN party AND get good grades)
Have a lot of fun (your first year doesn't come back)