High school feels ages ago…except life seems to repeat itself. The struggle to figure out who you are and what you want in “all of this” never gives you a break (especially as a person who can barely decide on what tea to drink on a daily basis). I was one of “those” people who did a victory lap during high school which felt like a complete big mistake (AKA take the extra year for competitive swimming but quit right before the season starts). I felt old and purposeless. I was suppose to be “so over high school” yet I was still sitting in a desk taking World Issues with Kim on Wednesdays at 10. I had no clue what I wanted in life or what I was doing at the moment…all I knew was I had to fill up that need to do “something” and anything.
I decided to attempt sneaking into Visual Arts, take a chance on Writer’s Craft, and join the Model United Nations. My year of almost regret became my most fulfilling year in high school. The only problem was that I still had to decide on what to do next. Alex, my Politics teacher, pointed out the simple obvious hint: make a list of what you want from your university or college experience.
I came up with the following:
- Liberal arts
- Interactive & small class sizes
- Active community
- Opportunities (i.e. international exchange, jobs)
- Living away from home
You’re probably already thinking that this would mean Glendon was the obvious choice…and to tell you the truth, Glendon was my last choice out of three schools. Despite acknowledging Glendon as being dead last, my heart was not set on any of the other schools on my list.
My Dad then pointed on the second most obvious hint to life: visit, visit, visit until you fall in love. As I went to the open houses for all the potential universities and booked extra visits while playing the keen yet cool potential student, I fell in love with Glendon. Each visit, I found myself more connected with the campus. I could see myself committing to a 4-year relationship with Glendon. This can happen!
Fast forward to 2014…and, 5th year. “Victory laps” don’t exist in university, only students who either refer to themselves as con-ED students or students who simply take 5 years to complete their program which breaks the supposed norm of completing a BA in 4 years. This is where you fully understand timelines as a social construct rather than a natural succession – I’m a 5th year and proud of it! My run through Glendon has allowed me to do the following:
- Pursue a liberal arts education specifically in International Studies & Philosophy as an iBA; and, discover my passion for art, philosophy, gender & woman issues and the environment.
- Engage in a diverse community and meet the most amazing individuals through various ways such as being a residence Don.
- Having the opportunity to collaborate with others sharing similar passions such as being a contributing member of York’s first and only feminist zine, Incendies.
- Complete a year abroad in Bordeaux, France, for one of the most life-changing experiences ever while tasting some amazing baguettes-cheese-pastries-all-the-yummy-things.
- Discover the world, but specifically Tortuguero, Costa Rica through earning a three-month summer internship via York International working on a turtle monitoring project with the Canadian Organization of Tropical Education and Rainforest Conservation (COTERC).
Looks like Glendon did a pretty good job on hitting every point on my list. Except, I’m not finished yet… there’s still a year left which means that there’s plenty left to do. And with that, here’s my list for Glendon 2014-15 (in no particular order):
- Take the Int’l Studies’ Symposium course (which is happening already, and we’ve chosen Japan as our country of focus)
- Win the ResLife House Cup (which is going to happen)
- Share, document, create the Glendon experience through all mediums
- Figure out the next step in life (as usual)
- Have fun!
That being said, I challenge you to make a list and I hope you’ll be just as surprised as me to see how much you can accomplish.