Leah Henrickson, Author at blogUT

Having these bits and pieces of advice rattling around in my addled brain is driving me crazy. So I thought I’d make a list. No order, no rhyme or reason, just a straight dope talk on all the things I think every UTSG student should know.

On Condoms

University students are broke enough as it is. There’s no need to waste money on condoms when they’re being thrown at you from every which way. Have a couple of minutes between lectures? Stop into SEC for an inconspicuous brown paper bag of the goods. Heck, while you’re at it, ask them to throw in some lube! You can never have too big a stash of it.

If you live in residence, ask your Don for some if it’s an ‘emergency’ (whatever that means). I mean, come on. My residence offers mint-flavoured condoms ‘for emergency use only’. WHAT EMERGENCY WOULD REQUIRE A MINT-FLAVOURED CONDOM ONLY?

I’ve also found free condoms offered at Health Services at the Koffler Centre and at the Shoppers Drug Mart on Bedford. By the way, Thursdays are U of T Student Days at this location, so bring your TCard for 20% off!

On Student Protests

While surfing the Internet to find things to put on this list, I found that this one came up again and again. It seems like a lot of people see university as a good time to channel one’s inner activist.

Find an issue you’re passionate about and go for it. You’re going to school in (or near) the biggest city in Canada – chances are there’s some sort of organization working on a protest for your chosen cause.

And I assure you, you don’t have to walk the streets naked or hack your way into government servers to have your voice heard. Heck, you don’t have to leave your room. While, yes, my suggestion is for you to get out there and attend a traditional in-the-street protest, there are ways to protest online. Remember the SOPA protests that sites like Wikipedia and Reddit took part in? That being said, online protesting isn’t just about changing your Facebook cover photo. I mean, remember Kony? What did that ever accomplish?

On Studying at Campus Libraries

There are so many libraries at U of T, so how the heck does one choose which library to study at?

I’ll tell you the quick and dirty answer.

You don’t have to choose just one. Study at all of them! While you’re at it, why don’t you look into actually learning how the cataloguing system works?

What I find incredible is that each library on campus has a distinct vibe and, depending on what and with whom you’re studying, some libraries offer more suitable atmospheres than others. For example, if I’m organizing a group study session, I’ll make sure it’s either at Robarts (second floor, where all the food is) or Kelly (in the comfy chairs on the first floor). Plus, it’s exciting to explore new libraries.

Maybe others don’t share my excitement for exploring these havens for bibliographical inquiry but, nonetheless, I think it’s important to try new things.

In short… don’t stick to just one library. Robarts 24/7 can be soul-sucking.

On Voting in UTSU Elections

We all complain about the UTSU, for whatever reason. However, voting stats show that hardly any U of T students vote UTSU elections. Your UTSU can’t adequately represent you unless you vote.

Contrary to what some people may say, the UTSU is important. Its decisions directly affect your academic and social lives. Vote so that you can get the most of what you want from your university experience.

On Pulling All-Nighters Studying at Robarts

While I mentioned before that Robarts can at times be soul sucking, it can also be a great place to get some overnight cramming done. Plus, you can rest assured that you won’t be the only one sleeping over at reliable John P’s. I kid you not when I say that I’ve known people to spend days at Robarts without leaving. Heck, you’ve got your coffee and food, your schoolwork, and, if you’re resourceful, a pillow and some comfy pajamas. You don’t really need anything else.

On Pulling All-Nighters Partying

Let it be known that Leah Henrickson does not ‘party’ in the traditional sense. She just doesn’t. Instead, she does to Snakes & Lattes (always accompanied by Smoke’s) and indie shows and the ROM, and she has more fun that she could ever have at a party.

So when I say ‘party’, I don’t necessarily mean getting smashed and crumping. Whatever crumping is. I mean going out and having a great time doing something that isn’t school-related.

Get out there and find something magical and bring your friends so they can experience the magic too. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to go spend my night experiencing the magical world of Dungeons & Dragons with the Dungeons & Dragons club. My kind of party.

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