Tuesday, September 19th, 2017...3:18 pm

Welcome [Back]!

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Congratulations and welcome [back] to graduate studies at the University of Toronto! The beginning of the year, especially for students moving to Toronto for the first time, can be a disorienting time. We at GradLife are excited to offer services to you in order to ease this transition. As the new GradLife Ambassador, part of my role is to help orient you on these services.

Last September, I started my research-based program with UofT’s Institute of Medical Science. I treated the first few weeks like clockwork. Lab from 9AM-5PM delving into my thesis topic: neuroplasticity in chronic deep brain stimulation patients with Parkinson’s disease. The isolation that easily comes with graduate studies didn’t occur me until I realized how difficult it was for me to answer the casual question: “how was your day?” GradLife exists to prevent this isolation as it encourages you to:

Connect with people. Alone, we are limited to our stream of consciousness and experiences. Through making connections we can expand our scope of knowledge, strategies, and perspectives in both academics and other aspects of life. I am a huge advocate for reaching out to people in your institute, program, and to those outside academia. By getting involved with the Trainee Affairs Committee at my research institute, my departmental magazine, and one of UofT’s many dragon boat teams, my self-inflicted feelings of isolation dissipated. An easy suggestion for you: attend one of our GradTalks, and introduce yourself to the person sitting next to you. Ask them how their day went.

Explore Toronto. Graduate studies allow students to become rare specialists on topics, and thus they are often propelled towards opportunities around the world. As graduate students of the University of Toronto, the more you allow the culture of this city to enhance your graduate experience, the more you’ll be able to embody a University of Toronto alumni at a national or international level. I hope to inspire you to discover Toronto for the beautiful city by Lake Ontario, rich with multiculturalism, and traditions that it is. Easy suggestion for you: seek an experience that is novel for you through one of our GradEscapes. Did you know that Toronto has a Shoe Museum?

Ask questions. No question is too simple or too complex. We are here for support. Easy suggestion for you: e-mail us at gradlife@utoronto.ca or tweet at us @UofTGradlife.

Hope your day is going well.

Sincerely,

Cricia



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