Monthly Archives

September 2022

Teacher with students in classroom

How to Cultivate Great Relationships with Your Professors

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Professors do much more than deliver classes and grade assignments. For instance, they’re the ones you’ll ask for letters of recommendation and they may even offer you the chance to participate in a research project while you’re still at college. However, if you never reach out to your professors, the only thing they’ll know about you is how well you did in class. The good news is there are numerous ways you can develop stronger relationships with your professors.

1. Find Out More About Them

Search online to see what you can find out about each of your professors in terms of their research and academic achievements. Places to look for information include your college website and LinkedIn. If you find that any of your professors share the same interests as you, definitely put in the effort to cultivate a relationship.

2. Introduce Yourself

Armed with the above information about your professors, you’re in a better position to strike up a short conversation after your first class. Introduce yourself and mention what you’re looking forward to. However, don’t expect professors to remember your name the next time you meet — they have a huge number of students every semester. You’ll need to interact with your professors a few times before they’ll put a name to your face.

3. Stay Engaged During Class

If your professors encourage students to speak up during class, make sure you do contribute (at least occasionally). The rest of the time, make sure your body language shows that you’re paying attention — this is something professors notice. Lastly, complete even optional homework assignments, and do your best. Although the homework may not count toward your final grade, it will shape your professor’s impression of you.

4. Go to Office Hours

Aim to attend two or three office hours with any professor you want to get to know better. Office hours are ideal for when you have a doubt about something you’re studying, you want more detailed feedback after a test, or you need support before you submit an assignment. During one of your office hours visits, it’s a good idea to talk about your career goals. Ask the professor for advice about what you can do to meet your targets.

5. Ask for a Letter of Recommendation Early

Instead of waiting until you need a letter of recommendation, ask your professor for one as soon as you finish the class. This will mean your professor still remembers you well — and the letter will reflect this.

6. Stay in Touch After Class

Save your professors’ emails to ensure you’re able to drop them a message in the future. For example, you may notice that an employer you’d like to work for is connected to your professor on LinkedIn. Having a mutual contact could help you gain an introduction.

You’ll have more opportunities to connect with professors and work with them on projects if you live near campus. For Durham College student housing, your best option is Foundry Simcoe. Our welcoming community is just steps away from the North Oshawa campus. You can hang out in the common room or study at the desk in your private bedroom — all the suites have high-speed internet. Apply now to secure a spot for an immediate move-in.

woman Calculating Invoice On Desk

6 Money Mistakes to Avoid in University

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Most students have minimal financial responsibilities before university. Then suddenly, you need to manage your own money to ensure you’re able to cover essentials, have enough for fun activities, and avoid going into debt. Be aware of the most common mistakes to ensure you manage your money appropriately.

1. Misusing Credit Cards

You may like to have a credit card to build a credit history. However, it can be tempting to use your credit card to put off paying until later something you want now. You should only take out a credit card if you know you can trust yourself to be responsible. This means only using it for purchases you’ll pay off as soon as the bill comes — as if you can’t afford to pay the balance in full, you’ll incur a high interest rate.

If you’ve never had a credit card before but you want one for the credit history, use it just for recurring payments like subscriptions. Set up autopay for payments — and never even take the credit card out of your apartment. This will make it impossible to misuse your card.

2. Spending Your Entire Budget

Although spending all your money before the end of the month isn’t quite as bad as going into debt with a credit card, it’s still a bad habit. You have unlimited opportunities to spend at university, but you need to set restrictions for yourself. Turn down invitations to activities that are too expensive or after you’ve already spent all your fun money for the month. There will almost always be free events taking place on campus that make great alternatives.

3. Thinking Scholarships Are Not for You

A misperception many students have is that scholarships are only for those at the top of their class and star athletes. In fact, there are most likely a few scholarships out there that apply to your situation — you just need to look for them. You’ll need to dedicate time to researching and applying to scholarships, but this can pay off big time.

4. Only Searching for Jobs in Obvious Places

Whereas it’s worth considering jobs on campus and nearby that pay an hourly rate, these are far from your only options. Turning to entrepreneurship will allow you to start work related to the career you want to pursue. It’s also likely you’ll enjoy your job, and the experience will enhance your resume in a way that a standard job never could. Plus, the options are endless: you could offer landscaping services, help locals move, do freelance web design, provide childcare, or sell your own branded university merchandise. Provided you possess the necessary skills and there’s demand for the service, you can turn an idea into a profitable business.

5. Waiting Until Graduation to Apply for Jobs

Unless you’re going on to study a master’s degree, it’s best to have a full-time job lined up for as soon as you’ve graduated. It’s likely that your university offers support for finding a job, such as by holding regular job fairs and publishing job posts aimed at recent graduates. Be sure to take advantage of these resources.

6. Living on Campus

Student housing can be one of your biggest expenses at university. Whereas living on campus may seem like a logical choice, it’s certainly not the best decision financially. Not only is the rent lower when you live off campus, you’ll also save money by preparing your own meals compared to paying for a mandatory meal plan.

An alternative to Ontario Tech University residence is Foundry Simcoe. Our student housing will give you a room in a fully-furnished suite or townhouse located just steps from campus. Plus, to help you save even more money, rent includes high-speed internet and a washer and dryer in your unit. Apply now while immediate move-ins are still available.