Your Coaches

Peer Coaches

Learn what you need to know about UTSC from your peers! The Get Started Peer Coaches are friendly, fun and helpful upper-year students from all programs. You can ask them about the campus, the community and their experiences in their programs. Peer Coaches are happy to share tips and advice for being academically successful, getting involved and what it’s like to be a UTSC student.

Get Started 2016 Coaches

Alyssa 

My Program(s): Double Major in Political Science & Sociology

My Year of Study: Alumna – Class of 2016

Favourite Place On Campus: The couches in the Social Sciences building! It’s usually a quiet and comfy place to study.

Some Advice For You: Take care of your academic obligations (go to class, do your readings and assignments), but also make time for the fun things that happen here at UTSC! Make friends, join a club, try something new at the gym, etc. All of these extracurricular activities will make sure that you get so much more out of your university experience!

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Andrew 

My Program(s): Double Major in Public Policy & Sociology 

My Year of Study: 3rd Year

Something Interesting About Me: I lived within a restaurant for 16 years of my life in Corner Brook, Newfoundland.

Favourite Place On Campus: Social Science Departmental Student Association Room 

Some Advice For You: Make the most out of your time here at UTSC and get involved; you definitely won’t regret it. Getting involved on campus has so many benefits: expanding your professional networks, refining your hard and soft skills, or even making long lasting friends are just a small portion of the possibilities that you will be exposed to. No matter what you choose to join, you get to experience firsthand the amazing community that UTSC has to offer.

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Arianne

My Program(s): Double Major in Biology & Psychology 

My Year of Study: Alumna – Class of 2016

Something Interesting About Me: I love to sing (and occasionally post YouTube covers)!

Favourite Place On Campus: Humanities Wing Patio

Some Advice For You: Don’t be afraid to ask questions! Given the culture shock from high school into university, there are obviously going to be a lot of things that you won’t know. However, what you can do to facilitate your transition into this new environment, is to ask questions and seek help regarding your concerns. Ultimately, adjusting to university will take time, but with the many resources we have available at UTSC, I’m certain that there will always be someone who is more than willing to help guide you in the right direction.

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Brian 

My Program(s): Double Major in Neuroscience & Mental Health Studies

My Year of Study: Final Year 

Something Interesting About Me: I DJ on campus for Fusion Radio, and I have a show with my friends where we play electronic dance music!

Favourite Place On Campus: The Valley

Some Advice For You:  Be yourself, be thoughtful, and be generous! First year can be daunting, but you don’t have to go through it alone…seek out the wonderful support services on campus, they’re here to help you!

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Chelsea 

My Program(s): Double Major in Human Biology & English 

My Year of Study: 3rd Year

Something Interesting About Me:  I’m obsessed with watching HGTV home renovation shows.

Favourite Place On Campus: The Humanities Wing Patio, especially in the fall when it’s still warm enough to sit outside! It’s such a calming spot to catch up on emails, tackle some readings, chat with friends, or just relax in between classes.

Some Advice For You:  One piece of advice I would give new students is to try to stay involved with at least one thing that you are passionate about, or is something that you enjoy doing. This can be continuing a hobby, joining an organization on campus, or continuing a sport you play. Personally, I didn’t do anything outside of academics in my first semester and over the holiday break I felt very unfulfilled because I missed doing things I loved in high school. When I got more involved with extracurricular activities I found that I managed my time better, met some amazing people, and even improved academically. I think it’s important to continue doing what you love outside of school because not only is it a great stress reliever, it’s one thing that you can look forward to on those really tough weeks when you just want a momentary escape from school.

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George 

My Program(s): Double major in Human Biology & Neuroscience

My Year of Study: 4th Year

Something Interesting About Me: I love to learn to play numerous musical instruments.

Favourite Place On Campus: The Meeting Place

Some Advice For You: Always say hi, and acquaint yourself with the people around you because the simplest hello can lead to amazing friendships.

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Soo Jin (Gloria) 

My Program(s): Major in French (Co-op) and Double Minor in Media Studies & Global Asia Studies 

My Year of Study: Alumna – Class of 2016

Something Interesting About Me:  I’m emotionally intelligent – meaning I am well aware of and am attentive to people’s emotions.  I can be a good listener for people who just need someone to talk to, and I take joy in helping people find peace and encouragement.  I have a sound understanding of culture and diversity in our community; and I love learning about culture and arts. I enjoy taking walks on campus; I know perfect places to take walks and do mini exercises. I love fruits and veggies, and I do not like fried, sugary, and creamy food.

Favourite Place On Campus: The Marketplace – I love this space on our campus. It’s perfect for me. It offers a wide variety of options for food; or I could even bring my own lunch/dinner and eat it here. It’s an open space for people to come eat, socialize, work on projects, or do their readings. It’s also very good for spending some me-time alone.

Some Advice For You: Don’t forget to spend some time discovering who you are as a person! You’re definitely more than just a student on campus! You bring a unique personality, character, and beauty to add to the life on campus. Find yourself, enjoy yourself, and love yourself! Then you’ll see how this new journey will be beyond exciting!

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Halima

My Program(s): Major in Psychology and Double Minor in Biology & French 

My Year of Study: Alumna – Class of 2016

Something Interesting About Me:  I once gave a science-based seminar on ‘how to reignite your relationship’ for couples in my senior year psychology course in university. I’ve never been in a romantic relationship but with all the research I did, I’m practically a love guru! Thanks UTSC.

Favourite Place On Campus: TPASC (Toronto Pan Am Sports Centre) – UTSC’s version of the school playground.

Some Advice For You: If you are feeling uncomfortable coming into this new university setting, that’s a good thing. They say if you are never uncomfortable, you are not pushing your limits and if you are not pushing your limits you are not growing. So embrace this discomfort and grow from it. You will be surrounded by amazingly brilliant people at UTSC, let that be a motivation for you but also, relax. Your success will come in its own time, place and form so don’t get caught up in comparisons. The trajectory of your journey here will be unique, try different things, grind it out, hustle hard and watch your beautiful future unfold. I’m so excited for you!

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Jenna 

My Program(s): CTEP – Specialist in French with Second Teachable in Mathematics and Bachelors of Education (2016-2017)

My Year of Study: Final Year

Something Interesting About Me: I go on walks often to meditate and reflect – feels awesome in the Spring + Summer!

Favourite Place On Campus: The Valley – Take a walk there on a nice day!

Some Advice For You: Write things down! Seriously, write to remember, write to reflect, and write to think… write to make notes, write to set goals, write to brainstorm ideas, write to sort out questions, write to learn more about yourself… 

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Mehak

My Program(s): Double Major in Human Biology & Psychology

My Year of Study: Alumna – Class of 2016

Something Interesting About Me: I can sleep through bright light and loud noises. 

Favourite Place On Campus: I really enjoy hanging out by the Tim Hortons in Bladen Wing. To me it feels like the heart of the campus. The library, lecture halls, study spaces, food court, etc. are all in close proximity and you meet many friends and acquaintances walking by.

Some Advice For You: Get involved! Volunteer, join a club, attend events, and learn something new! UTSC has so much to offer. In my opinion, and according to research, students do better in their academics when they do more than just study at the university. We're a community; make yourself an active member to get the most out of your university experience!

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Mehrnaz

My Program(s): Double Major in Human Biology & Mental Health Studies 

My Year of Study: Final Year

Something Interesting About Me: I love doing pottery.

Favourite Place On Campus: The Meeting Place

Some Advice For You:  I think managing your academic life is the first step. Take into consideration that how you studied in high school will look different from how you need to study in university. UTSC has a variety of resources that will help you develop and enhance studying skills including time management, note-taking, test-taking, etc. I strongly recommend you to use these resources, and you can find out about them at the Academic Advising and Career Centre.

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Michelle 

My Program(s): Double Major in Neuroscience & Human Biology 

My Year of Study: 4th Year

Something Interesting About Me:  I love board games, especially scrabble and monopoly.

Favourite Place On Campus: The Humanities Wing Patio – During the warmer months it’s a great multi-purpose space. You can soak up some sun between study breaks, get some fresh air during lunch or even catch up on readings.

Some Advice For You: University is place to grow academically and personally. So treat each experience, whether it is a success or a failure, as a moment to learn and reflect on progress you’ve made.

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Mirna

My Program(s): Specialist in Mental Health Studies (Co-op)

My Year of Study: Alumna – Class of 2016

Something Interesting About Me: As a recent immigrant to Canada, I am starting to discover the beauty here. I’ve only visited 2 of the provinces but I’ve made it my mission to explore Canada in its entirety.

Favourite Place On Campus: The Meeting Place – Something is always going on here!

Some Advice For You: Don’t be afraid to ask for help! The sooner your questions are resolved, the better you’ll feel and the easier it’ll be to pursue the next steps. Whether it’s for your coursework or for more general university questions, there are always people around the university happy to help.

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Naresh

My Program(s): Major in Human & Physical Geography and Double Minor in Psychology & Applied Statistics

My Year of Study: 4th Year

Something Interesting About Me: I’m a car enthusiast!

Favourite Place On Campus: TPASC (Toronto Pan Am Sports Centre)

Some Advice For You: Do not be afraid to ask for help.  Be that elementary student you once were, who desperately raised their hands up even if it started to get sore from waving your hands to get the instructor’s attention. It is important to ask immediately, otherwise you will see yourself fall behind in class quickly because material is taught at a quick pace and you may need the answer to your question in order to understand further materials.  Seek those who are knowledgeable such as the professors, Teaching Assistants (TA) or university staff who offer services such as improving your time management, study skills, writing skills, etc., in order to help you understand the material, or to get back on track in school.  It is up to you to seek out help if you need it.

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Natasha 

My Program(s): Double Major in English (Co-op) & French

My Year of Study: Final Year

Something Interesting About Me:I am a martial artist. I’ve been training Capoeira for 4 years and Muay Thai for 2 years. I am also a writer and have been published in UTSC and UTSG journals.

Favourite Place On Campus: I don’t think I can pick just one! The Humanities Wing Patio is beautiful when the cherry blossom trees are in bloom. The Meeting Place serves as a hub for student activity and almost always has something going on there. And the Toronto Pan Am Sports Centre (TPASC) is an awesome addition to campus with an indoor track and pool!

Some Advice For You: Put your physical and mental health first. University can be a very stressful time and it’s important to ensure that you’re getting your basic needs. Consider going for a walk around campus, practicing deep breathing exercises, taking a study break with a friend - whatever you can do to de-stress.

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Priyangkha

My Program(s): Double Major in Human Biology & Psychology 

My Year of Study: Alumna – Class of 2016

Something Interesting About Me: I’m a little bit of an adrenaline junkie. I’ve scuba-dived, climbed the tallest mountain in Malaysia (4095m), done white-water rafting, and outdoor rock climbing. Next on my list: bungee jumping/sky diving.I’m a little bit of an adrenaline junkie. I’ve scuba dived, climbed the tallest mountain in Malaysia (4095m), done white-water rafting, and outdoor rock climbing. Next on my list: bungee jumping/sky diving.

Favourite Place On Campus: I don’t have a favourite place. I go wherever my mood takes me.

Some Advice For You: Start getting involved in first-year itself. Undergrad is a chance for you to learn more about yourself. Break out of your comfort zones. Try something new! Solidify your strengths and test your limitations. Meet people! Networking will be your number one asset.

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Sana

My Program(s): Specialist in International Development Studies (Co-op) 

My Year of Study: 2nd Year

Something Interesting About Me: I’ve broken my wrist 3 times, all 3 times skating, all 3 times I was pushed (so I’m actually a pretty good skater!)

Favourite Place On Campus: The Starbucks eating area because of the perfect trinity: food, people and nature (right beside the gorgeous ravine).

Some Advice For You: Whatever you study or participate in at school, truly, honestly, wholeheartedly, love it. When you’re passionate about what you do, everything is more valuable and that much more fun. Life is too short to be stuck doing anything short of what YOU love.

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Shaira

My Program(s): Double Major in Molecular Biology, Immunology and Disease & Health Studies – Population Health

My Year of Study: 3rd Year

Something Interesting About Me: I love listening to Christmas albums! You can find Michael Buble’s “Cold December Night” on my playlist even in July! 

Favourite Place On Campus: The Marketplace

Some Advice For You: In the famous words of George Bernard Shaw “Life isn’t about finding yourself. Life is about creating yourself”. Make learning a priority and don’t be afraid to get involved both socially and academically. Don’t stress, try your best and have fun (and pack snacks for long days).

Teresa 

My Program(s): Double Major in Public Policy (Co-op) & Sociology

My Year of Study: 3rd Year

Something Interesting About Me: I am a big fan of the Harry Potter series! I would even write dozens of stories about the characters in my diary when I was in elementary school. I am pretty sure it stimulated my interest of creative writing and inspired me to imagine boundlessly.

Favourite Place On Campus: The Valley is definitely the best place on campus to de-stress! I love walking down the valley with friends after class and chill for a while. Don’t forget to bring some snacks with you and enjoy the beauty of the nature amid the stressful academic year. 

Some Advice For You: It is always hard to start something new, especially if you are not familiar with the country or the province. However, don’t forget you have our support on campus! The door towards your success in university is to always seek help when you need it, not only from your Get Started Coaches, but also from you peers and professors. Besides, don’t forget to look upon your strength, confidence and courage that lives inside you!

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Thusanthy

My Program(s): Double Major in Psychology & Human Biology

My Year of Study: 4th Year 

Something Interesting About Me:  I am interested in photography and love taking photos especially of nature or landscapes.

Favourite Place On Campus: The study spaces in the Bladen Wing

Some Advice For You: It is okay to be nervous or overwhelmed coming into university as a first year.  Everyone feels that way! I did when I was a first year! Take it a day at a time. Make sure to stay on track with your studies. But also explore the campus, get to know your professors and fellow peers, and join any clubs that interest you. It is a great way to make new connections and get to know people.

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Zabi

My Program(s): Specialist in Political Science and Minor in Public Law

My Year of Study: Final Year

Something Interesting About Me:  I love me some documentaries. It’s always nice to learn new stuff!

Favourite Place On Campus: The Bladen Wing hallway in front of the main Tim Hortons. Why? When you can’t decide what to eat on campus, it is the perfect crossroad section.

Some Advice For You: Do stuff on campus and study smart! That’s the trick folks, everything else will come with it.

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