Hi all! I will be one of your Life@UofT bloggers this year and so an introduction seems to be a fitting first step. This is both an introduction to you getting to know me and my experiences, as well as me getting to know myself through the art of blogging.
My name is Yusra and I am in my fourth and (hopefully) final undergraduate year at the University of Toronto. Surprisingly, saying ‘fourth year’ comes much more easily to me than I thought. Probably because it hasn’t fully settled in my system that in 8 months, it’ll all be over and I’ll be graduating!
Like many of us, I come from here and there, on a continuous ride, but one thing has been certain, I’ve always been a city person and a bit of a modern-day nomad. I’ve moved from Karachi to Dubai to Toronto, all dynamic places of constant movement and growth. In that sense, attending University of Toronto seemed like an obvious choice. It is close enough to the downtown core and all that it has to offer, yet still distant enough to take a step back and breathe. Of course, I didn’t think we’d end up moving once again at the end of first year to Milton and that I’d have to commute every day, but that’s a story for another time.
Coming into my first year at university I set goals and ideas as to what I wanted to pursue and get out of my time here – kind of silly when I didn’t exactly know what to expect from university to begin with. Safe to say, my plans continued to change with time as I explored my surroundings. I ended up majoring in Architectural Studies and minoring in Urban Studies as well as in Statistics. Yeah, that’s a lot! I am clearly a victim of indecisiveness and my varied areas of studies are partly a result of that. The other reason being, I just like a lot of things! I’ve taken courses from almost every department and if they were restricted, I joined related clubs or went to their events to check out whether it’s for me or not. I dove into everything from photography, designing, blogging, mentoring, barista-ing, coding, crunching numbers, playing volleyball to being a Daniels orientation leader thrice! Despite being in my last year, I am still exploring and embarking on new endeavours, never really sure about the exact destination but by now, I can at least confidently say I have found my direction.
With such a vast campus and all of its diversity and complexities in play, it can be a struggle figuring out where you belong, deciding where to go, what to do, and how. Perhaps the constant change in my life has shaped me in a way that I believe you don’t need to belong in a certain social or academic niche. You can be a member of a number of them and still maintain a balanced student life. I look forward to bringing you on this journey and sharing some of these experiences through Life@Uoft!