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just do the thing

Im going into first year the coming September and I am in Woodsworth college which was my second choice. I wanted to goto UC frosh, and am planning on buying it on the 7th in person. However now, I’m slightly paranoid as to if I’m even allowed to goto a frosh that’s not my own? Thanks so much, all the best.


hey there,

orientation works on an opt-in basis, which means that if you wanted to participate in frosh at another college, you would have had to opt out of woodsworth orientation and then register and pay with UC. i’m not sure if that’s allowed, but if it is, it would likely have to be a pretty exceptional circumstance, given how complicated the process would be.

honestly? i would just go to woodsworth’s frosh. i understand that UC is your first choice, but the fact is, orientation week is only one week. if you’re still really keen on UC after having spent a couple of months at the university, then by all means, go ahead and request a transfer at that point.

frosh is great, but it’s not the be-all and end-all of the university experience. you may find woodsworth actually better suits your needs once the year starts.

anyway. it’s halfway through frosh week, so i’m curious if you actually went through with attending UC’s frosh. what happened? did you have fun? let us know.



P.S. a lot of orientation activities will be uoft-wide anyway, so you’ll still have some experiences common with other uoft students. it’s not gonna be all woodsworth, 24/7.


why are they called “duffle” bags, anyway

This is the dumbest question ever but are we provided with one of those drawstring backpacks on frosh week?


hey there,

surprisingly, this was a super tough question to answer. i know of a few colleges who do provide them, but i can’t confirm for sure that EVERY FACULTY AND COLLEGE’S orientation activity will provide you with a drawstring bag.

most likely, yes. but if not, you can always buy one at your nearest dollarama. you can even silkscreen uoft’s crest on it, if you like.




no ID frosh week!!!1!!!1

Hi aska, For frosh week do I need my tcard? I have my ticket and everything but haven’t had a chance to pick up a tcard


nah. though you should get one as soon as you can, because it just makes stuff easier for going to libraries, using your meal plan (if you have one), getting TTC Student ID if you need it, etc.




first week, burst leak

What’s the first week of uni going to be like? (incoming first year currently freaking out)


hey there,

it’s almost certainly going to be great. i don’t want to invalidate your freak-out (by all means, get all the panicking out of your system now; better to do it in August than in December), but you will almost certainly have a great time and feel silly that you were so worried.

that said, the look of your first week will depend largely on two factors: 1) whether you’ll be participating in frosh week and 2) whether you’ll be living in residence.

if you’re doing frosh, your first week will be a whirlwind of group activities that will include lots of chanting, singing, dancing and running around campus. frosh activities will vary slightly depending on your college/faculty, but they have all been conceived of with the same idea: to make students feel more comfortable with each other and the campus, and to get excited students about school.

here are the websites for each college’s (and the Faculty of Applied Science and Engineering’s) orientation weeks, so you can take a further look: innis college, new college, st. michael’s college, trinity college, university college, victoria college, woodsworth collegeengineering.

if you’ll be living on residence, your first week will be a VERY INTENSE one filled with rapid friendship-making, get-to-know-you activities on your floor, and – obviously – moving in. it’s like this bizarre combination of frosh week and camp.

if you’re participating in neither of those things, you will still have a VERY BUSY first week. here is a list of tasks every student should do before school starts:

1. get your TCard, if you haven’t already.

also, get any cards you may need for commuting, e.g. Presto card, GO Student ID, Metropass, TTC Student ID, tokens.

2. buy your books (most will be available at the UofT bookstore, though you may have to resort to other options like Bob Miller).

every September, the controversy over whether it’s worth it to actually buy course books flares up again, like a recurring rash.

on the one hand, they cost an arm and a leg, and you will cry when you see your balance by the end of of your shopping spree. plus, everyone on Facebook and Twitter is promoting sites where you can find everything you need (maybe) for FREE!

on the other hand, you’re not so sure about the free/cheap options because they might not be the right edition, you kind of want a physical copy, you want to be able to set these books on your bookshelf to make you look smart later on, etc. etc.

if you’re unsure about any of your books, the best thing to do is wait until the first class. then you can ask how essential it is that you own a certain edition.

you can also wait it out and only buy the books when it becomes apparent that you will actually need them. some courses will rely more heavily on books than others, and there’s nothing wrong with just waiting and feeling it out.

3. practise the route between your classes.

it’s one thing to be able to point out all your classes on a map. it’s another to actually make the trek between, say, Northrop Frye and New College, slogging across Queen’s Park, manoeuvring past the giant plant pots next to Sid Smith,  and figuring out exactly how much time you need to get between those two places.

most of your classes won’t be back-to-back, so you should also identify convenient food and washroom stops in your vicinity for times when you have a break between classes.

again: make sure to do this before classes actually begin. that way, you’ll be confident about your route when school starts.

4. if you’re thinking of getting involved on campus (and you really should, in one way or another), then you should stop by UTSU’s Clubs Fair on September 9th. find out what kind of stuff is out there, and maybe even sign up for one or two clubs that interest you!

5. if you think you will need it, look into support services on campus.

– Accessibility Services takes a notoriously long time to process applications, so sign up for them before classes start, if you can.

– Drop by CAPS and see what they’re all about. familiarize yourself with the process of booking an appointment.

– identify academic success tools: your registrar’s office, the UofT libraries that will be closest to you on campus, the Academic Success Centre, the math aid centres, and your college’s writing centre.

and that’s aska’s guide to having a great first week! i really do hope you enjoy your initiation into the wild ride that is UofT. stop back in sometime and tell me how it went.

cheers for now,



st. mike’s, st. mike’s, ra ra ra

When can smc student register for frosh?


hey there,

SMC hasn’t updated their orientation website yet, so unfortunately, i have no idea. last year, however, the earliest deadline was July 15th, so we’ve still got some time left. you can keep an eye on @SMCCampusLife if you have twitter for updates, or check SMC’s frosh website closer to July.

have fun at frosh. hoikity choik or whatever.




a very important date

Where do I go to find out what days frosh is happening?


hey there,

frosh week this year will be the second week of september, from the 7th to the 13th. however, you’ve come a bit early to the party. orientation is still being planned, and so a lot of the details aren’t out yet. however, keep your eye on this page. when events start being solidified, the exact dates and times of different events will be posted there.

frosh week is a composite of elements common to all uoft students, and events specific to your faculty/college. some faculties/colleges have already started providing information about Orientation 2015, and some haven’t. i’ll post all the links i could find below:

hope you have a radical frosh week. remember to chant/cheer unironically and look both ways before you cross the street,



how much frosh can i fit into my schedule???

Hi there,

I recently accepted my offer to UTSG for Life Sciences and am beyond excited! I got into UC, and even though it wasn’t my first choice (thanks, Vic), I ended up loving the vibe I got from the people on facebook groups/forums/etc.
I chose to stay in Chestnut for res, however, and have already paid my housing deposit. I’m not regretting my decision or anything, but I’ve heard that Chestnut has it’s own frosh week?
Does this mean that I’m unable to attend the UC Frosh Week, or that I’d have to pick between the two?
I don’t want to miss out on UC Frosh Week because like I said, the vibe I get from the people at UC is incredible and their Frosh week looks like a ton of fun.

Thank you so much!


hey there,

don’t worry about it, dude, UC is great. and may i personally recommend diablo’s at UC if you want to drink great coffee in a place that looks like it used to see people sentenced to death by hanging.

according to last year’s move-in guide for chestnut, the chestnut-specific orientation activities “complement the College and Faculty activities, so you can participate in both” (page 9). that might’ve changed for this year, but i highly doubt it.

lots of residences have orientation activities that familiarize first-years with the residence, but are definitely not designed to interfere with actual orientation.

have fun at frosh! make sure to keep all the free coupons – they’ll come in handy.




i need to put it in my planner

When is frosh week? Exact dates


hey there,

i love how you felt the need to specify that you needed exact dates. “now don’t give me any WISHY-WASHY dates here. i need EXACT DATES and i need them NOW, jack. NO, you cannot go home for christmas to visit your family. do i pay you to carve turkey or do i pay you to make numbers? get back to your cubicle.”

orientation week this year will be from september 1st to the 6th. you can find out the exact times that certain activities take place by visiting the orientation website of your faculty or college.




friends & frosh

I’ve heard from people 2 things about uoft that im not sure are true and I would like them clarified. 1) if you are a commuter on frosh week you won’t enjoy it/make any friends. 2) it is incredibly hard to find friends at uoft as there isn’t the best clubs/groups to meet others.


hey there,

1) listen, any experience can suck – frosh week is no exception. some people go to frosh and it just isn’t fun. also, commuting to frosh is kind of a pain. so that’s a bummer.

BUT i would say that the general attitude towards frosh week at uoft is positive. the great thing about frosh is that all the disparate schools, colleges and offices at the university come together during frosh to explain who the h*ck they are and what the h*ck they do.

here is a list of orientation events put on by student life last year. as you can see, it’s pretty comprehensive. that page also links to the orientation schedules of most of the colleges and faculties last year. peruse those if you want to have a better idea of what you can expect from frosh week.

it’s also important to note that residence and commuter students don’t have a separate frosh, so there’s plenty of opportunity to make friends with people on- and off-rez.

also, commuter students vastly outnumber residence students at this university, so it’s not like you’re going to be in some sort of friendless minority. in fact, most colleges’ frosh weeks have events specifically for commuter students to get together and socialize. if you go in with an open mind and you’re willing to participate, you’ll probably leave with at least a friend or two.

2) friends will not just come to you. you do have to actually talk to people if you want to make friends, and when you spend a significant part of your time sitting silently on a bus/train/subway, that might not come as easily to you once you get to school.

however, if you are willing to talk to people, you’ll find friends cropping up everywhere – in your classes, in clubs that you may be involved with, at jobs you may take on-campus, etc. not every club will be what you’re looking for, but if you look widely and early, you’ll soon find the place or places that are a fit for you.

here is a list of organizations on campus if you want to start exploring now. as well, i’d encourage you to hang out in your college’s commuter lounge and talk with people there (most colleges have one, or equivalent).

all in all: yes it’s hard to make new friends in a new, unfamiliar environment, but i wouldn’t say this is harder to do at uoft than anywhere else. the university has a lot of opportunities for new students to connect with the community on campus, so don’t be afraid to try out different things!




hey, we have some tips about frosh week!

hey there,

so, orientation week (also known as frosh week) is coming up soon. first-years across the country are about to participate in an outpouring of enthusiasm rarely seen in this city. they’re about to be water-ballooned, gently coerced into huge choreographed dances, and forcibly marched across campus while being made to repeat college/faculty cheers.

it’s gonna be awesome.

and while you bright-eyes first-years get into the spirit of things with rounds of canon-fire and (age appropriate) drinks, upper year students will stay at home for one last week, sleeping in and desperately trying to convince themselves that school isn’t just around the corner.

BUT before aska buggers off and joins the other upper years in this last week of mass denial, i thought i’d draw your attention to our very helpful frosh week tips post, and also to the entire category on this site that is dedicated to talking about orientation week.

give those a browse before you get here for the inaugural week, and remember to GET EXCITED!*



*insert cheesy fist pump and radiant smile of pure benevolence common to all orientation week leaders.


the best week of your life probably

frosh week tips?


hey there,

***disclaimer*** aska spent her first, terribly misguided year at a university other than uoft (there are universities other than uoft? you better believe it, you egocentric turnips), so she doesn’t know the specifics of frosh here. however, it’s essentially the same event plopped onto different campuses, so my experience will hopefully still be somewhat relevant.

1. you don’t have to go.

most people enjoy frosh week, but some people don’t. that doesn’t make you weird – it’s your life for God’s sake, do what you want.

if you decide not to attend for whatever reason, why not use the week to find your classes, buy textbooks, familiarize yourself with campus, and scope out grocery stores and 7/11s, if you’re going to be living in rez.

2. it’s ok if you don’t meet your BFFLs at frosh.

i met some great friends during frosh week, but i met lots more in my classes, extra-curriculars, etc. be open to new friendships and chat with as many new people as you can, but don’t hate yourself if you don’t meet your soul mate in between college spirit cheers and football games.

3. be frickin realistic about your alcohol intake.

look, i’m not here to police your decisions – obviously, aska doesn’t condone underage drinking. but PLEASE, if nothing else, don’t go into frosh aiming to drink more than you’ve ever drunk in your life. this is not the time to be testing your liver’s overdrive capabilities. guess what? if you puke in someone else’s room, mom won’t be there to clean it up for you (take it from someone who saw a stranger projectile vomit off a bunk bed in someone else’s room, and then had to clean it all up themselves.)

4. no one cares if you’re attending frosh week ironically.

frosh week is a little bit cheesy. there’s dancing, chanting, leis, and themed parties with styrofoam cups, all of which is fun if you just go with the flow and don’t worry about how silly you look. if you plan on going just to make fun of it, you probably won’t enjoy yourself.

5. go to the “boring” parts of orientation.

there is always an academic portion of orientation that some people skip entirely (take a look at vic’s orientation schedule from last year to see how academic vs. non-academic activities balance out). which is fine, but if you’re at university because you’re not at all interested in academics, you’re probably not gonna last long here. my point is: guest lectures and club days are really useful, and you may even find them interesting.

and those are aska’s 5 tips! no matter how you choose to spend orientation week, i hope you stay safe and have a great time.



BONUS TIP: if there are any dances or formal events where you feel inclined to wear heels, always bring flats with you. you don’t look as cute as you think in bare feet, and you’re not going to enjoy the walk home either.


so you wanna be a frosh leader?

I was wondering if you could be a frosh leader for a college that’s not yours. I’m officially a St.Michael’s College member but I really hate that college/don’t know why I picked it and I don’t spend a lot of time with SMC people and I spend most of my days at UC since I know a lot of UC students. Would I be allowed to be a frosh leader for UC although I’m from SMC??


hey there,

i’m sorry to hear that’s how you feel about SMC. maybe, if you feel so strongly about it and spend so much time at UC anyway, it might be a good idea to consider transferring colleges. every college is different and if SMC isn’t working for you, then maybe you should consider contacting UC in person or by e-mail to discuss transferring colleges. that way, when it comes to things like applying to be frosh leader, the path will be a lot more straightforward.

as to whether or not UC’ll take you on if you’re from another college, it’s kinda hard to tell tbh. i haven’t found any OFFICIAL DOCUMENTS that specifically BAN students from other colleges applying, but it seems like one of those rules that goes without saying. like, they also don’t expressly ban students from other universities from applying, but i think we can agree they’re not gonna be hired. however, the people who would probably know for sure whether you have a chance are the folks at in charge of student life at uc. i’d speak with them first!

at the end of the day, if none of this pans out, i think that being part of orientation week is awesome, no matter which college you’re a part of. maybe doing frosh with SMC might even open your eyes to the cool stuff hidden away in little corners of your college. who knows! either way, i hope you go ahead and apply, ’cause it’s a great opportunity, no matter which college you remain affiliated with.

best of luck,



Pythagoras wouldn’t have panicked. He was kinda scary though.


I am a first year-student in Life Sciences about to embark on the journeys of MAT135 in the Fall and MAT136 in the Winter, and I feel very insecure about it. I got a 75 in grade 12 calculus, and the teacher was being generous. I feel like I don’t remember anything from last year? Should I review my notes? If I do, wouldn’t that hold me back? Does MAT135 touch upon some concepts from grade 12?

How much should I be worried about university math – on a scale of 1 to 10, with 10 being ‘really worried’? I know there are math aid centres – can I just drop into those? Should I also allow myself to be consumed with stress if I get a low mark? And if I do get a low mark (and I’m praying I’m not) will that affect my application to the program I want to get into (Human Biology)?

Thanks for your time.


You’re stressing a lot. Let me tell you something: there is no call for the kind of panicking you’re doing right now. Life is too short for that kind of silliness. Here’s something that you probably don’t realize: you’re not the only one who knows you’re a frosh. It’s not some kind of big secret. Everyone else can tell. I can tell, your peers can tell, and more importantly, your profs can tell.

This means that the professor knows your background, and he or she is going to structure the lecture appropriately towards it. The course starts off with a quick review of trigonometry, which, if you went to school in Ontario, is something that you started learning about in Grade 11 Math (if you went to school outside Ontario, you’re also more than likely to have learned this before).

Now, I’m not saying the course is going to be a piece of cake, but it won’t be impossible, either, regardless of what your marks were like in high school. If you consistently do the weekly problems and go to lecture, you’ll do well. If you do find yourself needing help, however, it is always available to you – absolutely feel free to drop in on it!

As for Human Biology, as long as you complete 4.0 credits, you’re eligible to enrol – so don’t panic.

Good luck, little soldier, and try to chin up!


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