Category Archives: On Campus

Downtown Toronto Tourism Spotlight: Royal Ontario Museum (ROM)!

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The Royal Ontario Museum is definitely a sight to see, and one that you likely pass by frequently walking across campus to different classes. It is located between St. George and Museum subway stations and is one of the most convenient tourist spots location-wise for University Of Toronto students in particular. Even Museum station itself is beautifully designed as a nod to the institution’s collections. Not to mention the fact that General admission to the Museum is free to full-time students attending a Canadian post-secondary institution on Tuesdays when valid school ID is presented. Talk about a sweet deal!

The ROM originally had one major gallery for archaeology, geology, mineralogy, palaeontology, and zoology. Nowadays, there are frequent new limited-edition exhibits that are not covered by our student general admission, such as the tattoo exhibit recently launched.

You can view that entire museum at an comfortable pace in one afternoon. I really enjoy a visual representation of history rather than how school introduces students to history via mandatory boring history classes in high school. The first thing to notice about ROM is the beautiful architectural design from the outside that has a modern asymmetrical vibe. Inside is very easy to navigate with a map pamphlet, although I would encourage you to view the museum at your own pace and not necessarily stick to a single planned route. The fun part of the museum is discovering the exhibits on different floors and taking as much time as needed to enjoy the full experience.

I hope this blog article gave you an honest student perspective on this tourism spotlight of the ROM. Happy exploring!

UTSU Spring Elections 2016

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As the semester comes to an end and elections season has been intense in all of the faculties and colleges, the election that affects all students at UTSG and UTM has now begun: the UTSU Spring Elections. For the next few days, students can exercise their right to vote for a UTSU that they feel will make a difference for them and cater to the needs that they want. As the Architecture, Landscape, and Design Director running on the slate HelloUofT, I wanted to talk a bit about my experience and why I think that it is extremely important to vote in these elections.

As a first year, I did not involve myself in and around campus simply because I did not think that I had neither the personality nor the courage to speak up about the lack of representation and involvement of my faculty. It was only after my friends invited me to join their group that I took the steps to put myself out there. Working with the slate has definitely been a lot different than just listening to them talk to me at a public place on campus. I have seen the raw, intense emotions of individuals who truly want to make UofT a place where the students feel included and engaged. I have seen a group comprised of seven executives and over fifteen directors instantaneously care for each other as soon as we all met. The experiences from our leaders inspires us to push harder and fight for the things we believe in, and I can honestly say that if these group of people can care immensely for people they’ve only just met, I am confident that they can put this love and strive into a UTSU that will not only listen to their students, but give back and give more reasons as to why UofT is such a fantastic school.

I encourage everyone to vote these next few days. Online voting is open until 6:30pm on the 24th at www.utsu.simplyvoting.com .

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Exercise your right to vote and get ready to say hello to a UofT that says hello back!

Pulse 2016: All You Need to Know

“Mental health is tricky because its about really knowing who you are and being able to say that you need help in a surrounding where you think so many other people are stable.”-Sophia Shim

Needless to say, it takes a lot of courage to ask for help.

One of the most challenging parts of dealing with mental health is coming to terms with the fact that no one is invincible. On the outside, we may seem on top of everything, put together, ahead of the game and confident, but on the inside, no one knows how we truly are feeling. Coming to the realization that we must take care of our minds as much as we take care of our bodies is something that society has not come to terms with yet. We’ve seen the major changes that things like the introduction of the Health & Wellness centre at the University of Toronto, as well as the addition of Mental Health Awareness Month – and it’s about time. More and more students seem to catching on to the progress that the university has made. “On campus there are many options if you are in need of help, whether it be provided by your college or UofT as a whole”, says second year student, Sophia Shim.

One initiative, founded by Joanna Huang and Michael Bray of the University of Toronto aims to create a sense of community in the Toronto student population and encourage discussion about mental health in the GTA. Pulse, founded in 2013, has fundraised for three years to bring attention and create a positive space for discussing mental health in our community. “There is nothing I am more passionate about as I am mental health. It’s an issue that touches the lives of everybody, in one way or another.”, says Joanna, “The entire topic is muffled. It’s blanketed by a thick layer of societal stigma, and completely devalued. People don’t talk about it. I’ve struggled with my own mental health, and I find it very difficult to talk about. But I have no trouble talking about a sprained foot, so why should this be any different?”

Since it’s founding, Pulse has been partnered with Oolagen, a Toronto based organization who’s mission is to “listen, engage, assist, and empower young people to recognize their own strength and values”. Located on 65 Wellesley Street East, Oolagen provides counselling services for all ages and provide residential homes for people aged 14-18. Oolagen also provides on site school support in for three different Toronto high schools, giving students access to mental health services when they cannot otherwise. “[Ooolagen is] also planning to expand their services to cover university-aged youth”, says University of Toronto Pre-Medical co-president Alissa Mirochnitchenko. The Pre-Medical Society is partnered with Pulse as one of their main supporters on campus.

www.pulsetoronto,com
Pulse is on the 18th – get your tickets at www.pulsetoronto.com

Both Oolagen and Pulse are promoting mental health and discussion to Toronto, and have been gaining momentum ever since their start. “Pulse 2015 has raised over $2000.00 for Oolagen… This year, we will strive to surpass our previous earnings and continue to further increase awareness for mental health!” says Pre-Medical Society Co-President Victoria Malysmiuk. On March 18, Pulse and Oolagen are partnering again to bring an amazing fundraiser to Orchid Nightclub. As the campaign’s slogan states, “Good music. Good company. Good cause”, it’s sure to be a fun evening for an important charity. “We hope that our annual fundraiser, Pulse, remains a reminder for individuals to critically think about their own mental health and seek help if they feel out of balance.” Says Victoria and Alissa.“I think that my biggest goal this year was to make the discourse around mental health positive- we are all students and we all understand that university can be physically, mentally and emotionally draining at times. In my eyes, events like PULSE are important because it brings students together to have positive, happy experiences.”

Additional information about Pulse, Oolagen, and this year’s charity fundraiser can be found at the following sites:

www.pulsetoronto.com

https://www.facebook.com/events/1537362533224023/

http://oolagen.org/

We hope to see you on the 18th!

UofT Science Rendezvous is BACK!

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Are you ready for another year of FUN science activities? We’re back with more fun, more experiments, and more science!

Never heard of Science Rendezvous? You sure are missing out! Science Rendezvous is a FREE, Canada-wide science street festival aimed at highlighting and promoting science in all its aspects. Meet with world-class researchers, participate in hands-on experiments and activities, watch amazing demonstrations of the integration of science, architecture, and human ingenuity, and most of all, have fun while experiencing science in a whole new way! Want to learn more about us? Head to our newly designed webpage by our talented graphic designer, Science Rendezvous!

Our exec team has been working very hard since December to put this event together. Want to know the most updated information about our event? Like our Facebook Page! You’ll be the first to know what we have in line for you this year (and maybe we’ll post some teasers just for you).

We are also on Twitter and Instagram! Definitely follow/like us, because you never know, we might post some cool stuff that’s exclusively for our fans. You don’t want to miss out!

I hope you are as excited for this event as we are! Hope to see you on May 7th! Join us and RSVP NOW!

U of T Relay For Life 2016

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The most common misconception about Relay for Life is that it’s a physically intensive marathon only open to the strongest athletes for participation. Not true! The word “relay” also promotes the notion that a competitive race is being held and further strengthens this misconception. For those of you who have heard about Relay, you’ve probably experienced sentiments of hesitancy and confusion. Doubts may have raced through your mind as you began to question your physical ability and lack of exercise in your daily routine.

The truth is that Relay for Life is a non-running event. Running shoes and physical agility are not required to attend. The only challenging part about relay is staying up till 1am, but from 5pm-1am, strangers become a community as they unite together to fight an important a cause close to their hearts. Relay for Life is a fantastic fundraising event filled with enthusiastic individuals fighting for a cancer-free tomorrow. It’s a night to remember and honour those we have lost, to continue to raise funds for cancer research, and to celebrate with a full event line-up.

Cancer affects us all, whether it be a family member of our own or a friend who has been impacted. The impact of cancer is impossible to ignore, but on March 11th, University of Toronto’s Relay for Life Committee invites you all to participate in the event to fight back against cancer. The goal is to fundraise as much as possible, but for a registration fee of only 15 dollars, you’ll receive a t-shirt, luminary, and supply of food to keep you energized. A night of comedy, music, food, and open-mic awaits and all you need to do is spend 2 minutes online to register. You can bring your friends and create a team online or even join by yourself and we’ll handle forming a team for you! Any friends or family are welcome to participate as well as non-U of T students. If you can find some time to spare one Friday night, you can make a difference. All proceeds from the event will go towards the Canadian Cancer Society. Join us in participating in this event and help those who need it most.

Register or make a donation here, and find us on our Facebook event and cause page.

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Study Areas at UTSG for Those Who Can’t Study in Silence

Dog Sleeping in her Notebook after Studying
Me after Studying

If you’re like me, the silence of a reading room in a library is terrifying and soul-diluting. You sit there without sound, yet still surrounded by many fellow human beings all of whom you know are capable of making noise. You struggle to read the next word of your textbook, but wait- was that a gust of wind blowing? No, it was merely that guy two tables over exhaling slightly louder than usual. Oh dear heavens, now you need to turn the page, but you’ll disturb EVERYONE in that room with the little waves of air caused by that single second of rotating a piece of paper 180 degrees. What to do? This is bad. You hear thumping sounds now- are you hallucinating? This place is suppose to be silent, and- oh gosh, that’s your own heartbeat. What if they can hear it?! Why are your thoughts suddenly yelling? Get out! Out before you disturb the peace! OH NO, PACKING YOUR THINGS UP IS CREATING DEAFENING DISTRACTIONS THROUGHOUT THE ROOM. No choice but to just sit there immobile until EVERYONE ELSE LEAVES.

So I never study in a silent zone. In fact, I also try to avoid the abyss of Robarts. Some people feel the dreary opaque walls that confine you inside and away from the sunlight helps them focus. But not I. I can’t handle such places of emptiness.

On occasion I will choose to study on campus regardless. Normally I’d invite a friend or two so as not to feel so lonely. But you can’t talk in libraries- so I’ve gone out of my way to find my top three study locations on campus where talking at an audible volume is totally okay.

E.J Pratt Lounge

I hesitated to mention this gem of a study spot because I’ve always considered it my special little under-rated hideaway. But no more. You can eat, talk, study, and more in the Pratt basement; there are even meeting rooms you can use without appointment. Bonus for the insanely comfy couches and chairs.

The Buttery, The Larkin Building

Good food (Pizza Pizza) and good drinks (Starbucks) in addition to tons of seating make this a great study area for prolonged cramming with friends. For more privacy, there is a separate seating area for reading and the occasional self-conscious nap.

The Two Study Areas in Sidney Smith

I didn’t even know how to get into these rooms until second year. But that’s just me. Now I find myself in Sid Smith studying more than anywhere else on campus. I always manage to find a place to sit, and there is always just the right amount of hustle and bustle to keep me studying without falling asleep to the lulls of strangers breathing.

Club Profile: University of Toronto Electronic Music Community (UTEMC)

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Image by UTEMC

Interested in electronic music? As per one commenter’s request, read on to learn more about U of T’s only electronic music community!

blogUT: How was the UTEMC created and what is its mission?

UTEMC: The UTEMC was created by two close friends who have been going to EDM events together forever. They decided to create a club where U of T electronic music fans could come together to meet other people and attend events together, as well as foster a culture of electronic music appreciation by fans from all over the three campuses. Our mission is to establish a group of like-minded individuals with an interest in electronic music and DJ events. Our goal to is set up a place for everybody to congregate and discuss events (both upcoming and past), new music, or just to meet somebody else with whom you might share a similar electronic music taste to. Throughout the year we’re going to be hosting events to bring people together, including in-house DJing events and workshops. Continue reading Club Profile: University of Toronto Electronic Music Community (UTEMC)