Ariiite… I am in a huge dilemma right now… I’m in grade 12, and I want to get into Life Sciences at University of Toronto.
People say that U of T (St. George Campus) is reeeeaalllyyyy competitive and hard and you’re dying every minute over there (as said by my friend who is a first year there). Other people say that Life Sciences at UTM is easier. It’s confusing… Which campus has a better Life Science program?? I want to make sure that I’m in a place where I’d be able to successfully complete my degree without having to worry about too much competition and all the crazy stuff first year students talk about. LOL
Oh and also, I heard that if you take Life Sciences at UTM, your classes are going to be in both St. George and Mississauga campuses. Is that true?
alright, i’m gonna try to put this nicely: figuring out which program is easier is not what you should be doing.
first year is hard, no matter the school. people who say “i work twice as hard as everyone else because i’m at uoft” are likely not doing very well and are trying to soothe a shattered ego. unfortunately, these people exist at all schools. they?go out every night and then moan to you every morning about how somehow, somehow, they’re failing chem. you can’t get away from their ego-stroking, asinine nattering. what you should do, whatever school you end up at, is ignore them.
as for competition, it’s a bit like the flying spaghetti monster: it only exists if you believe in it.
but you already know all that! you want to “successfully complete your degree.” i want that for you too; i also want you to get into a program you’ll really enjoy, because that’s the only way you’ll ever get through it. so let’s find out what it is.
as a starting point, i’d recommend taking a look at all the life science programs for both campuses: here’s utsg’s, and here’s utm‘s. if you know what area you’re interested in and only one school offers it, then your choice is already made! but let’s say, for argument’s sake, that you’re interested in a program offered at both universities – biology, for example. next, take a look at the kinds of courses you’ll take at both schools for that program (here’s utsg’s biology courses and utm’s biology courses, just to follow through on the example).
are there some courses you’re not keen on taking? does one program offer more flexibility than the other, and you’re thinking you might want to double major or pick up a minor? do you really only want to do one program (as a specialist, for example), and you’d prefer the program that has more required courses? these are all things to think about.
when you’ve properly thought about and researched all these things, you’ll be so well-prepared to make the decision that you’re likely to have a far better first year than your friend who is “dying every minute.” asking me for a second opinion was a great decision, and wanting to avoid the “craziness” tells me you really want to do well and not get caught up in pointless platitudes. now continue those great decisions by doing some real research and not trusting what a bunch of random people are telling you (not including me, of course. i am not a random).
also, don’t worry if you don’t know the answer to any of these questions yet. it’s a lot to think about. lucky for you, you’ve got lots of time to think about it. and if you run into any more trouble in the process of your researching, don’t hesitate to come to me for clarification!
sorry for the novel. hope that was helpful, friend.
P.S. some utm courses are downtown, but it depends on the program! there’s no way for me to tell you exactly which classes are held downtown, but it may happen to you. there’s a bus that carries these people back and forth though, so i wouldn’t worry about it.