How do they do it? Juggling academics and athletics

As a campus tour guide, I receive a lot of questions surrounding student life and whether a school-life balance is something one can expect to manage at the renowned U of T.

Seeing everyone’s defeated, exhausted expressions on campus, I thought it’d be a good time to share some of my tips and tricks of the trade that have helped me to juggle three jobs, three sports and a full-time course load.

A drawing of a woman with many outstretched hands to juggle different life responsibilities.
Disclaimer: I don’t usually look quite so glamorous while doing it.
Source: yummymummyfitness.com.au

1. Sometimes you need to downsize. Sure, juggling five balls looks really cool but if you’re exhausted and you’re about to see them all fall to the floor, consider whether you might be able to take one out of the equation. I know it’s hard, we’re very ambitious students and we prefer to be able to persevere and to succeed without giving anything up, but I encourage everyone to critically evaluate whether the cost is worth what you’re gaining.

In Which Sargam Seeks Help!

For Self-Care week, I want to share an experience that literally changed the course of my entire university career and perhaps, changed how I will live my life from now on.

Okay, yeah, I’m overly dramatic usually but I’m not exaggerating here, promise. Brace yourselves.

a box of assorted cookies
PS. A lot of my self-care tips include food, in one way or another.

Lessons in Career Exploration

A picture of a clipboard with a piece of lined paper on top, in the foreground of an empty room filled with chairs
Calm before the storm: getting ready for b2B

I recently attended one of the Faculty of Arts & Science’s Backpack to Briefcase events, Humanities/Languages Speed Networking. University of Toronto alumni were invited to talk to students about their career pathways, and how they managed to navigate the workplace after graduation. The first half of the event consisted of discussions with a pair of alumni in small groups, and the other half involved an informal mingling period with peers and alumni. We got to ask alumni about their experiences and main takeaways from their time at U of T, their career pathways, and what relevant skills and experiences they needed to get their jobs. From listening to the various stories and opinions of the alumni, I managed to pick up these four lessons about career exploration.

Navigating My Skills with Navigating the Workplace

A picture of steps leading to a door

When I signed up for Navigating the Workplace, a workshop offered by the Career Centre, I didn’t know what to expect. This was the first Career Centre event I had ever attended, and the event description only vaguely spoke about building goals, understanding workplace expectations, and learning effective communication skills. However, at the end of the event, I gained insight into how to effectively communicate my qualities, and about the different ways to approach career exploration.

Why I’m Setting Career Goals This Year

An arrangement of shrubs and flowers partially cover front campus and University College
Front campus, in all its glory

It was my first day of classes at the University of Toronto, and I stepped onto the trampled turf of front campus with a pair of juvenile—and, admittedly, cliché—Converse and a backpack-sized collection of goals for the incoming year. I was brimming with a plethora of productive emotions, such as anxiousness, homesickness, and—probably the most helpful one—fear.

Luckily, I made it out first year alive, and with zero regrets. Zero regrets, that is, except for one.