IWD: to the rad women in my life (there’s a lot of you)

Happy International Women’s Day!! On this day, I just wanted to take some time to celebrate a tiny, tiny portion of the incredible women in my life.

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Mum: You’re the mom whose kids are forced to hear, over and over, “your mom is the best” and the only possible answer is “I know.” I have never met a more fair and compassionate person in my life. You know what you believe in but always value genuine communication over arguments. Your commitment to making sure that everyone is able to express their feelings and feel listened to and appreciated holds our family together. You’ve taught me to say no when I’m feeling overwhelmed, that it’s okay to take time for myself (something that doesn’t come as easy to either of us). Thank you for always leading by example. If it’s true that all daughters turn into their mothers, I’m okay with that.

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LOVE YOU ♥♥♥

RLAdies & Kate:* I’ll tell anyone who’ll listen that my experience on this don team has been like no other, that this is the most supportive, wonderful team that I’ve ever been a part of, and that is due in such huge part to you. All 3 of you are so kind and capable. Thank you for always checking up on us and making sure that we know how valued and supported we are. Thank you for forcing me to accept TTC tokens to get off campus when I was feeling stifled, for being the best listeners, for being smart and hilarious and genuine. If we could create some sort of hybrid version of all 3 of you, I’m pretty sure they could take over the world. You all together certainly could.

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*translation for anyone who doesn’t speak Glendon Res Life: the RLAdies (Sarah & Olivia) are like the dons of the dons (that’s me!). Kate is our Residence Life Coordinator (RLC) aka the Supreme Leader of Glendon Residence.

My C house girls: When I first applied for donship, I tentatively put out that I had enjoyed living on an all girls’ floor and wouldn’t mind doing so again. Then I got assigned to one and heard warnings from so many people that girls were catty, girls were vicious, girls were mean. But for every time I hear that, I see 10 times over that girls are kind, girls are supportive, girls are wonderful.

Thank you for cheering each other on when you’re not feeling your best. Thank you for movie nights, gym dates, and dance parties. Watching you go from strangers to our own little community has been the most incredible experience. Thank you for this year — je vous aime beaucoup ❤

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you can find this + more art at etsy.com/shop/SatrunTwinsArtShop 

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Thank you to the women in my life who motivate me to do better. Thank you to the ones who support me when I’m struggling, celebrate with me when I’m doing well. Thank you for the insightful, rich, honest conversations about the challenges you’ve faced and the ways you’re dealing with them. Talking to all of you about gender issues, whether in the form of nuanced applications of a feminist lens in academia or rants in the hallway about micro-aggressions has made me both more critical and more understanding.

Thank you for handing out compliments like candy, lending me your clothes and pens and hair ties, giving me my space and giving me company.

I’m better for having known of all of you ❤ Today’s for you.

#OneWord365: 2016 Edition

Hi friends! Long time, no see 😦 but it’s a new year, new me, and a new regular blogging schedule (let’s hope!). Hopefully you’ve seen some of the #OneWord365 blog posts floating around from my fellow eAmbassadors — if not, they’re linked at the bottom of this post, go take a look! — but if you haven’t I’ll let you in on the only kind of New Year’s Resolution that’s ever worked for me personally.

#OneWord365

OneWord365 is a project that encourages people to choose just ONE word that they hope will characterize and define their year instead of a lengthy list of New Year’s Resolutions. I like this for 2 reasons: 1) I’ll actually remember the word unlike when I get carried away making resolutions and only end up remembering what 2 of them were by the end of the year, and 2) I find it a much more cohesive, realistic way of looking at things than items to check off a list.

My word last year was “explore” and there’s something about the fact that I can’t just check this off the list as complete that’s attractive to me. I want whatever it is I choose to be something that I can continue building on past December 31st but that still gives me the option of setting markers of achievement so I can see progress. With regards to 2015, I think I did pretty well exploring! I was lucky enough to travel quite a bit outside of the city and country but even within Toronto, I got out more and actually started crossing off some of the places on my never-ending list of things to do and see in the city. I also mentioned wanting to read more poetry in 2015 and, let me tell you, 2015 was a year of poetry for me. Success!

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THIS IS THE MOST ME!! But also… I went outside in 2015!

But! Moving on to 2016!! (I won’t be used to saying this until March, earliest)

This year I’ve decided to go in a bit of a different direction than last. The word that I’ve chosen for 2016 is honesty, and by this I mean primarily being honest with myself.

In my first year at Glendon, I took the Glendon Leadership Workshop Series, a 5-week leadership program offered for free by Student Affairs. One of the activities that we did that really stood out to me was called a mind-body-heart check-in (I’ve probably messed up the order but you’ll get the idea!). In the activity, you either find a partner or share as a whole how each part of you – mind, body, and heart – is feeling. It sounds like a simple activity and it really is, but when I actually had to sit down and think, okay how is my body feeling? sometimes it would be a case of, huh… I’m actually feeling kind of sore, maybe I should get up and take a walk after this or I’m a bit tired, how much sleep have I been getting recently? And more often than not, before I consciously started taking a mental inventory of myself, I had no idea that I was even feeling that way.

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I’ve gotten into a bad habit recently of downplaying it to myself when I’m not feeling well, not sleeping well, not eating well. It’s always easier short-term to put things off and I think that temporary feeling of, “it’s fine, let’s go” has turned into a habit. Like in my first year, a lot of the times I don’t even think about really important!! things like if I’ve eaten enough that day. This year, I’m going to make a real effort of asking myself questions about how I’m feeling and actually taking the time to think and assess before answering. I preach a lot about how your health — mental and physical — should come first, and it’s time to seriously apply that rule to myself too ♥

TL;DR 2016 is the year of self-care!! My #OneWord365: Honesty.

Be sure to check out the other #OneWord365 posts going up from #TeamAwesome (#TeamOctothorpe ♥):

Amanda, Francette, Kamea, Kiera, Krysta, Jasmin, Jennifer, Juan, Sienna (WHEW! + there’s more to come, keep an eye out :))

The Dreaded High School to University Grade Drop

My sister is staying over with me for Thanksgiving weekend because I’m the don on duty from Friday night to Monday morning in a building where most residents have gone to spend the long weekend off campus (she loves me after all!). Since she’s a grade 12 student, I thought I’d take the chance to pick her brain and find out what’s most worrying her and her peers about university. (Not so) surprisingly, I found out that it’s the same thing that I know worried my friends and I: the spike in difficulty between high school and university.

Some of my high school teachers did a great job of portraying university as this anxiety and stress-filled experience that had me dreading my future workload. As a student with grades solidly in the 90s, hearing a high school English teacher tell us she graduated with straight Bs and that it was “a miracle” for university was, frankly, terrifying, especially considering my plans even at that time involved law school.

So, the grade drop. Is it real? Yes and no. There’s definitely some truth to the point that your university professors will expect more from you than your high school teachers might have. You’ll also probably have more to worry about in university so it can be more challenging to keep your grades up if you’re not paying attention to them.

Personally, I’ve managed to maintain my grades pretty well since high school. Even nicer, my grades from second year were even better than first so hopefully I’m on the right track!

Let’s get to the good stuff. How do you avoid slipping grades?

1. Don’t let yourself fall behind. A student taking a full course load at Glendon typically has 15 hours of class a week. A week. If you’re thinking that’s not a lot of time, you’re right.

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Don’t make the mistake of wasting all of your “free” time!! Your classes may only be 3 hours a week but your readings and assignments will take up a lot more time than you’re expecting, especially later in the semester. Build a study schedule from the get-go so that you’re not scrambling to catch up when the semester is at its busiest. You’ll probably also want to fill your schedule with extracurriculars, friends & family time, and maybe even a part-time job, so budget your time wisely.

2. Know what’s expected. This is so key, I cannot stress it enough. If you don’t do well on an assignment, always feel free to (respectfully) ask your professor or TA what you can do to improve on future assignments. Before all this though, read the requirements. On the first day of every class, you’ll receive a syllabus (aka a course outline) that will have EVERYTHING on it. This syllabus is your new BFF… or at least until the next semester comes around. A lot of the times you’ll also receive a handout specifically for a given assignment (and if not, the instructions are probably clearly outlined in the syllabus).

Read over these guidelines before, during and after writing and submitting an assignment. Important things like what you should actually do (vs. the hazy memory you have of your professor mentioning the essay in the first week), format rules, referencing style to use, submission details, etc. will all be contained in the document. Give yourself enough time before starting the assignment to check it over so that anything not covered can be clarified in class.

It’s also a good idea, for me anyway, to write down specific things your professor mentions when going over the assignment in class. For example, looking at an assignment handout I have on my desk, I’ve added in *make arguments that integrate all readings around single hypothesis which is probably a direct quote from my lecture and will help me know exactly how to go about completing my assignment.  

Leslie Knope: making organization fun, always

3. Be present. Your time is valuable. The truth about university and academia is that sometimes it’s BORING. This is coming from someone who was too excited to sleep the night before the first day of class (in my 3rd year!) because of how much I love learning. It’s way too easy to zone out during a 3 hour lecture or midway through a 50 page reading. Sometimes you can control when you take a break – and when you can and would benefit from one, please take it! – but other times you’ve just got to refocus as best as you can and concentrate. I save myself a lot of catch-up time when I’m present and attentive during my lectures and readings. This way, instead of having to relearn concepts when it comes time for a test or exam, I already have a foundation because of how much better I’ve absorbed the material.

I’m an expert at daydreaming about irrelevant things at the worst times but paying attention in the moment will save you SO much valuable time

4. Get ready to work. I won’t do you the disservice of lying and saying that university’s a breeze and that no matter what, you’ll ace it. Your teachers weren’t lying; things get tough sometimes, especially when you’re balancing what feels like 100 different things. You can track down a never-ending list of tips to make university that little bit more manageable but when it comes down to it, your readings will only get done by you clearing your schedule and opening up that book. To get the grades, you have to put in the work. Work hard, work smart, and remember why you decided to go to university in the first place.

The sacrifices we make for our GPAs…

5. Take a deep breath. It’ll be okay. You can do this. You got into this program (go YOU!!) and you’re surrounded by people who both a) want to help you and b) have the skills and resources to do so.

Don’t know who to ask? Here are some of the many resources available to you on campus: your don (don’t live in residence? you can still talk to us!), your peer mentor, your professor, Counselling Services, etc. University can be a challenge but no one is expecting you to have it all figured out. Speaking from personal experience, asking for help when you need it can be difficult, but it will save you a lot of unnecessary stress to reach out. Everyone is here to help you, take advantage of it! And most importantly, believe in yourself. You’ve got this.

Future students: do you have any other questions or worries about university life? Current students: do you have any other tips to add? Drop me a comment below or come talk to me on Twitter @soniapGL!

The Introvert’s School Survival Guide

There’s a strange divide in the people in my life of ones who have been very surprised that I’m an introvert and ones who haven’t been surprised at all. This makes sense when realizing just how many popular misconceptions about introverts there are, but it’s still a little frustrating sometimes. I remember a few years ago, when I first started getting interested in introversion dynamics, looking up information online and being bombarded with tips that really sounded a lot like “how to not be an introvert — be an extrovert instead!” This is neither A) realistic or B) desirable. Introversion (or extroversion) in and of itself is not a blessing or a curse, it’s all about figuring out what works for you and tailoring your interactions to make you feel healthiest and happiest.

Please note that all of these tips will not apply to all introverts because – surprise! – we’re a diverse group with different characteristics, values, and interests. One size does not fit all 🙂

1. Get involved with the things that interest you. A common characteristic of introverts is a desire for meaningful conversation and interactions. I dislike small talk but still want to get to know people… I would just much rather talk about philosophy than run through the same, boring 10 Q&As for every person I meet.

How does getting involved help? It’ll connect you with like-minded people that have at least some of the same interests as you. When I go to Model UN meetings, I know that I’ll be interacting with people who are interested in in-depth conversations about politics or world affairs. At the Order of the Phoenix club, we can rant about Harry Potter headcanons and debate the pros and cons of attending Hogwarts (pros: magic, cons: death seems much more imminent). There are so many clubs and teams at Glendon (and even more over at the Keele campus) that finding something you’re passionate about shouldn’t be too hard.

small talk is THE WORST!!

2. Rehearse what you’re going to say. Personally, I don’t mind (and sometimes even enjoy) public speaking and presentations. If that’s you, great! If not, that’s also totally okay. A large part of the reason I feel so comfortable doing presentations is because of how I prepare for them. When planning out a presentation, I do a very detailed, precise layout of exactly what I’m going to say. It helps me a lot to plot things out as I’m actually going to say them (slang, rhetorical questions, asides, etc. included!) so that by the time I go to present, I’m already comfortable and familiar with what’s going to happen. I don’t actually write all of it down because re-writing points just isn’t my style and doesn’t help much with my retention, but even just repeating it to myself in my head a few times before the real deal is so so helpful.

The same principle works with participation as well, as disingenuous as this may sound. Participation is meant to be spontaneous, isn’t it? In a lot of my classes (and life in general), I tend to get so focused on listening and taking in what everyone else is saying during class discussions that I forget to volunteer my own thoughts. When I’m doing a reading or listening to a presentation that will be followed by a discussion, it helps to identify a point I can bring up later, even if I don’t know exactly the direction the discussion will turn.

You know you’ve got a killer point to make

3. Opt for nights in or activities where you’re actively engaging. I love going out with my friends whether it’s to eat dessert, explore the city, or even attend a party. Sometimes though, I want to be social but not leave the comfort of residence. I’m 99% sure everyone feels like this sometimes which makes it 10x easier! I’ve done a million and one common room movie nights but you can also try board games, art nights, cooking, etc. Not only are nights in generally cheaper (#IMPORTANT), they’re also way more convenient and relaxing for me.

If you are in the mood to go out, consider an activity where you’ll be doing something instead of just sitting and talking. Especially with friends that I don’t know as well, I find it can be a bit awkward to just go straight to the dinner date, a preference that goes back to my dislike of small talk. Try doing an activity where you have something to do with your friends, like rock climbing, skating, trampolining, laser tag, bowling, etc. etc. etc. There’s a never-ending list of activities to check out in Toronto, find something that sounds fun to you!

4. Set aside some time everyday to recharge. For me, I take about half an hour (or more if I’m able to) every night before I go to sleep to recharge.after a day of social interaction. I’m involved in a lot of activities that require being around other people and while these are great, they can leave me feeling exhausted if I don’t take time afterwards to properly wind down. I can’t go straight from a social event or party to bed, I need to take at least half an hour to read a book or watch an episode of my favourite TV show by myself. Similarly, if I have a busy day planned, I’ll take lunch as a chance to get away for a bit. If you can’t physically leave and find a quiet spot, put in some headphones or pull out a book and only the rare, clueless person will keep trying to have a conversation.

Can’t you see I’m busy being by myself??

5. Take a day off and don’t feel guilty about it. Take time away from people. I’m serious. Feeling drained? Don’t go that event, tell your friends you’re having a quiet night in, lock your door and curl up with a book or a movie. I used to get really shy about taking time to be by myself and recharge but it is SO important. Don’t feel guilty for having to cancel on an event you said you would go to or a study date with a friend. Your mental health comes first. SELF-CARE SELF-CARE SELF-CARE ♥

Listening to yourself and taking the time you need to recharge is not only kinder to yourself, but also better for the people around you. If I’m at my limits of being around people, I get really anxious and irritable, I can’t focus as well, and I won’t be as productive. Do yourself and your friends and family a favour and get away when you need to.

GUILTY NO MORE

Have any more tips? I would love love love to hear them. Drop a comment below or find me on Twitter @soniapGL!

 

The Weekend from Hell

Hi friends! Long time, no talk. I hope you had the most amazing summer 🙂 Today I’m going to be sharing a bit of mine!

Last summer, I worked as an RA at an international summer students’ program for children aged 12-17 in downtown Toronto. The students come to improve their English and see Toronto and (most of them) live in University of Toronto residences while they do so. Cue my job! RAs live in residence with the students, wake them up, eat breakfast and dinner with them, walk them to school, plan evening activities like scavenger hunts and casino nights, and take them on weekend trips to places like Niagara Falls and Canada’s Wonderland. This year, I was offered the position of Head RA. I was excited for the opportunity but also super nervous to be in this new role. Most of the RA team (which consisted of 8 people in addition to my co-head RA and I) were new at their role and so training them and getting them into the groove of things took a bit of time and patience. At our busiest point in the summer, we had about 240 students with us spanning across 4 different residences (one about a 20 minute walk away). My voice after trying to yell across a packed cafeteria for 2 months? Not pretty. I was days away from investing in my own portable microphone.

I’ve (not so) affectionately dubbed my second last weekend of work “The Weekend from Hell.” It was already scheduled to be one of the more challenging weekends just due to the types of trips we had scheduled but by the end of the weekend, I was convinced that everything that could have gone wrong did.

So. Day 1. We went to the Scenic Caves in Collingwood, near Wasaga Beach (a cool place if you’ve never visited!) with the beach scheduled for after that. After 20 minutes of trying to fit everyone onto the buses Tetris-style we finally made our way to the beach where 2/4 buses got hopelessly lost. Apparently one of our bus drivers had shoved a map and a magnifying glass into the hands of one of the RAs and told him to direct him from downtown Toronto all the way to Collingwood. The roads were filled with traffic that another RA and I attempted to distract from by becoming human jukeboxes on our bus – spoiler: there was a lot of Taylor Swift. But, you know, minor details. These things happen (often) and the day seemed to be going okay. At the caves, our usual plan is to split the group in half and alternate between going through the caves and going to the suspension bridge. My group started with the caves while the other half of the group was still fighting its way through traffic (side note: apparently it was extra busy on the road because it was Elvis weekend. What is Elvis weekend?!).

After everyone had gotten to do one half of the park, we met in a nice, grassy picnic area for lunch. We waited outside for the pizza that our office staff ordered to arrive. After 30 minutes, we started to get nervous and decided to call the pizza place to check on our order. We’d had experiences in the past of the delivery driver getting a bit lost on the way to the park and wanted to make sure everything was okay. When we called though, we were told that there was no pizza ordered for us.

Improv time. There was a group of about 30 students who had to leave the trip early (i.e. skip the beach) so that they could make it back to the residence in time for their flight. In order to fill the bus, that meant 10-15 other students also had to go back with them. We decided to get food for the students who had to leave at the Scenic Caves and wait until the beaches to feed everyone else.

Expectation: There would be a few students who would reluctantly agree to return early to the residence.

Reality: EVERY SINGLE KID ON THE TRIP (or so it felt like) “needed” to go back early so that they could say goodbye to their friends properly.

Have you ever had the experience of 100 kids yelling right at you? Do not recommend. There were angry students and disappointed students and students who looked like they might cry if I didn’t let them go back. Overall, I was decidedly not everyone’s best friend.

When we finally sorted out our plan and got students their food (2 buses would go back and 2 buses would stay – compromise! Everybody’s happy! Hooray!!) it came time to load the buses and make sure we had everyone. Since our attendance lists had been left in the dust with all of the new edits, I was running to and from the buses to make sure that everyone was accounted for. I don’t think I’ve ever seen/heard as many genuinely concerned expressions and “are you okay??”s from my RA team as I did that weekend.

With the students who were meant to head to the beach, we stopped at a Pizza Pizza and A&W rest stop to get them some food where I realized… I had left the company credit card with one of the RAs who was already on his way back to the residence. So after paying for all the food with my own money, I finally collapsed into a chair and started devouring my veggie burger. Apparently the universe doesn’t completely hate me though because just as I sat down, I looked out the window and saw the first few rain droplets coming from the sky. Guess we wouldn’t be able to squeeze in that trip to the beach after all.

I won’t get too much into Sunday but let’s just say it involved:

  • A scheduling error
  • 1.5 turned 5 HOUR canoe ride
  • Climbing out of my own kayak to flip over probably 15 other canoes
  • Tying boats of students who were too exhausted to continue to my own kayak and dragging them along the river
  • A student being abandoned by his friends in their boat and walking up the river bank himself
  • Said student getting lost on a trail and discovered by the police
  • My staff members running up to me as I zombie walk out of the water (so… tired…) with the sweet, sweet words: “Sonia the police are here to talk to you”
  • Finally eating lunch at 5:30 PM
  • Declined credit cards

Oh, and… almost forgot:

  • A flat tire.

Lessons Learned

In pretty much all of these chapters of the summer, I was .5 seconds away from quitting the job and running home to a summer of TV binging and home-cooked meals (tell me that doesn’t sound tempting). But let me tell you something. It is the coolest feeling being in a situation where everything seems to be going wrong and being able to stop and say to yourself, “no, it’s fine, I know what to do.” This is 100% not to say that I didn’t mess up plenty this summer. I had my fair share of fails but (get ready for the cheese) everything worked out in the end. I had a great support network of friends and co-workers, not to mention some pretty amazing students to work with. After the leaving the Scenic Caves early debacle where I was internally trying to stop myself from crying as I reasoned with the students, they finally started to calm down and all of a sudden I was being attacked with hugs from every direction and being told “I’m sorry” and “I love you.” These kids were my babies and some of them called me MOM and I’m not crying, you’re crying.

Just one group of the most wonderful students 🙂 🙂

And lesson #232? At the end of a long and busy summer, there may just be a wonderful family vacation to Italy waiting for you before you’re thrown back into school 😉

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All About the Lion’s Den

As a Glendon student, one of the organizations that you’ll definitely come into contact with is the Lion’s Den (Salon Coeur de Lion en français). The Lion’s Den is the student help centre and is stationed right at the front of the Centre of Excellence so that anyone new (or old!) to campus can get help with any and all things Glendon. Lion’s Den peer mentors (like me!) do things like give directions, answer questions about university life, and direct students to on-campus resources like Academic Advising and Student Financial Services.

As a peer mentor, there are 2 main components to my job.

1. Peer mentoring
As the name may suggest, each peer mentor with the Lion’s Den has a group of around 25-30 new students who are their mentees. Mentees have the chance to meet their peer mentor during Discover Glendon, a mandatory academic info session during orientation week, and use them a resource throughout the year for any questions or concerns they have. Every first year student has a mentor available to them so that they always have someone to rely on for support

2. Kiosk hours
Each peer mentor puts in 3 hours/week at the information kiosk that I mentioned earlier. Not only is this time spent answering questions, but we also frequently have activities at the kiosk for students that are passing by (with PRIZES!) or fun pick-me-ups like our Valentine’s Day cards + chocolate or our new Classic Jokes.*

* spoiler: they’re hilarious. I spent half my shift last week doubled over in laughter.

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Kiosk hours are ideal chocolate-arranging time…

How to make use of the Lion’s Den (as a first year student!)

1. Go to the kiosk when you have questions!
Lost on your first day of class? Lost on your 50th day of class? Not sure where to find your professor’s contact information? The Lion’s Den kiosk is an amazing resource for any and all questions. If the students at the kiosk don’t have the answer, they can direct you to someone who does.

2. Get in touch with your peer mentor!
Peer mentors will send out check-in emails and conduct phone calls to see how you’re doing and ask if you need any support and we encourage you to take advantage of that! Personally, I love when students reach out to me with their questions so please don’t ever worry that you’re bothering your mentor – that’s what we’re here for 🙂

3. Get involved with the Lion’s Den!
Peer mentors on the Lion’s Den are students in their second year or higher, but you can get involved as a first year student as well. There are a few first year students who are “shadows” and work at the kiosk answering questions alongside other mentors. The Lion’s Den is a really collaborative, supportive network of student leaders so it’s a great way to get involved on campus.

4. Get leadership experience!
The Lion’s Den offers a free 5-week leadership workshop series where you have the chance to explore your leadership style and improve your skills. I participated in the program last year and it was an inspiring and instructive experience that I would highly recommend! The Lion’s Den also puts on a Leadership Conference annually. Look for information on that at the beginning of the winter semester!

TL;DR There are so many resources available to incoming Glendon students — USE THEM!!

Do you have any questions for the Lion’s Den? Drop me a comment or tweet me @soniapGL and I’ll do my best to answer!

So You Want to Be An International Studies Major

… good choice!

Just one example of the cool kinds of things you could be studying

What is International Studies?

International Studies is an interdisciplinary program. Translation? It’s not just one subject. In my (almost!) 2 years of the program, I’ve delved into history, philosophy, political science, economics, law, and more. As someone who had a difficult time settling on a program to study because I wanted to learn EVERYTHING, this works really well for me.

What kinds of classes can you take?

The courses I’ve taken so far that count toward my International Studies major are: International Society; Global Geography; Culture, Globalization & Civil Society; Critical Thinking and Research in International Studies. See what I mean about broad? As you get into your upper years, you can start taking more specialized courses depending on what interests you in the introductory ones. There are classes for peace and human rights, economics or development — it’s up to you!

Are there any opportunities for learning outside of the classroom?

Yes! Glendon offers a course called Professional Internship, which is where students have the opportunity to do a work or research placement in Canada or abroad. In addition, the International Studies department has a class called International Symposium, where a group of students selects a country of interest and puts on a conference. Kelly just blogged about the Symposium if you want to know more! And, of course, as with any program, there are lots of extracurriculars offered at Glendon that can relate to your classes, such as the Model UN team, the York-Glendon Global Issues Group, and much more.

What comes out of an International Studies degree?

Since what students learn in the International Studies program is so diverse, it makes sense that their career paths are as well. Some common next steps include public policy, diplomacy, journalism, and business. A lot of students also go on to do a Master’s program or law school. Personally, I’m interested in law at the moment and my International Studies courses have helped develop the critical thinking skills I would need for that.

What do you like about International Studies?

I like that it’s a little bit of everything. I like that it keeps me up-to-date on what’s going on in the world. I like that it encourages me to think critically about what I hear and study. I like that it’s a challenging program and I get to build on a variety of skills (research papers, conceptual debates, presentations, etc.). Most of all, I like that it teaches me to explore beyond my little part of the world and learn about new cultures, processes and ways of living.

Sound like a program you might be interested in? Let me know in the comments if you have any questions! You can also tweet me @soniapGL