Hey Everyone! My name is Ellora and I am going to be one of your @lifeatUoft bloggers this year, in partnership with the Centre for Teaching Support and Innovation. My aim here is to try and bridge the gap between the students and the faculty at the St. George campus. We have this opportunity to interact and engage with exceptional faculty both inside and outside the classroom and it would be a shame to waste it. But before I get into that, here’s a small idea of who you’re going to be hearing from.
I’m a third year undergraduate student at the University of Toronto with a major in English and minors in Psychology and Creative Expression and Society. When I’m not in class or at the library, I’m at the gym, with friends, or writing at a cafe nearby. The other day I was cleaning out my backpack and I found a Starbucks napkin with some writing on it from last month. That might speak more about my lack of organizational skills than it does about my love for creative writing, but you see what I mean. I also love learning about the human mind, which is where the Psychology comes in. It is both, fascinating and scary what the human mind is capable of. And it’s definitely worth thinking about which direction we’re headed in. I mean, at this point, whether you’re a 1st year or a 6th year, we’re all working towards our degrees. How are we going to use it? How are we applying what we’re learning right now? Does it align with the kinds of people we aim to be? If I’m thinking about these questions, I know you are too. What I’m saying is there’s a lot of things I’m trying to figure out. We all are. The great part about being in University, and U of T in particular is that we have brilliant learning tools and opportunities to help us with that. And as much as that may sound like it’s out of a University pamphlet ask yourself this — what’s stopping you from starting a conversation with your professor? And is it worth letting that stop you?
I know you have a heavy course load and a billion other things to do. We’re all on the same page. My job here is to help make things easier by encouraging you to be more than just a passive listener in class. Even if that involves seemingly tough steps like breaking out of your comfort zone to raise your hand and ask that “stupid” question in class. There’s a reason our courses aren’t all just self study sessions. We’re put in a learning environment that requires us to be actively involved so we can challenge ourselves and grow from it.
I can’t promise you perfectly structured bullet points on how to go about approaching your courses. I can, however, promise you posts rooted in real thoughts and experiences. And what that means is that I’ll give you a small window into my experiences here at U of T. And hopefully we can learn and grow from them, together. My job here is to make sure you don’t deprive yourself of the learning opportunity. Actually, never mind, that’s your job. My job is to make you think about it.