Jovian Wat--an introduction

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Jovian Wat--an introduction

Post  stsuei06 on Sun Jun 29, 2008 2:16 pm

I've known Jovian since my first year in Canada when we both went to Westridge Elementary school. It's been awhile since we joked around on the broken concrete basketball courts. Very Happy

In highschool, we played basketball here and there, but we really picked up again when I joined the band in my gr. 12 year. Since then, he's gone to Queen's, and continued to do some research for the psychology department. He aspires to become a pharmacologist. Best of luck!

Smile

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Jovian Wat's take on Queen's and post-secondary life

Post  stsuei06 on Sun Jun 29, 2008 2:17 pm

Why Queen’s?

Before I made my decision on the university I wanted to attend, I visited my three prospective Ontario universities (Queen’s, Western Ontario, and Toronto) during their open house event. Queen’s was the second one I visited. Because I knew someone there, I stayed at my friend’s place the night before the actual open house event. When I stepped out of the car that night and walked across the yard to ring my friend’s doorbell, I had a strange feeling that I was home. Kingston felt like home.

Of all the universities I visited (the three plus UBC and SFU), Queen’s gave me the greatest sense of community. That night, my friend and I met a mutual friend three times at three different locations. The small university feel was appealing to me, and is still appealing to me now. I believe I chose the correct university to call home.

Queen’s is one of Canada’s leading research-intensive universities. As a student who is interested in pharmacological research (please don’t mix that up with pharmacy), it was also a good choice to choose Queen’s. Three of the graduate students I am working with in the psychology lab (in cultural psychology and pain psychology, 2 PhD and 1 MA) are actually from UBC. One particular psychology professor here, Rod Lindsay, made a worldwide contribution to the criminal identification system. You may have read of him in psychology. (It’s not just the psychology department that‘s well-known at Queen’s, just that I’ve been exposed to psychology research more.)

[/i]Compare some of the universities rated by students:[/i]

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/Page/document/video/vs?id=RTGAM.20071015.wv-urc-UBC-1016
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/Page/document/video/vs?id=RTGAM.20071015.wv-urc-SimonFraser-1016
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/Page/document/video/vs?id=RTGAM.20071015.wv-urc-Toronto-1016
http://www.theglobeandmail.com/servlet/Page/document/video/vs?id=RTGAM.20071015.wv-urc-Queens-1016

Residence and student life at Queen’s?

Residence is typical stuff. Loud residences (unless you’re on a study floor or something). Less-than-average café food. Drinking parties. False fire alarms in the middle of the night. Stuff like that.

There is a whole thing about the “freshman 15”, where a 1st year gains like 15 lbs from café food. Well, maybe it’s not 15, but it certainly is an unhealthy number. Just make sure you don’t overeat and stay fit. Try my “one diet”: if your residence/café food is buffet style, take only 1 plate and 1 bowl to eat, and 1 cup to drink. For food, only grab 1 scoop, 1 slice, 1 piece of whatever you want to eat, and it doesn’t matter what you eat. It worked really well for me.

I met most of my friends from residence and frosh week, and then met more friends through their friends. Just be open with meeting new people for the first while. Everyone is new to the environment, new to university life, and new to everyone else, and everyone wants to meet friends. When you see someone you have never met before, just start a conversation and there you go.

For me, I didn’t choose to drink that much. It’s not that it’s inconvenient to purchase alcohol (really, it’s quite convenient here…you can “dial a bottle” to have alcohol delivered to you), but I just don’t want to get myself drunk and walk around like a “doozie” doing weird stuff. Besides, by the time someone gets me drunk, they’ll be poor because I have high tolerance >=D.

Sian wanted me to comment on how easy it is to meet a boyfriend or girlfriend. My advice is just to stay open and meet more people, and these relationships will come. The most important thing is to keep an eye out for people at all times, because you don’t know when and where you will meet that someone. I met mine in the residence café haha.



Some tips

It’s nice to aim high and work hard in high school, but don’t stress over your marks too much in high school. In the end it doesn’t matter because after you get into a post-secondary institution, those marks are pretty much erased from your academic records, never to be looked at again.

As for AP courses and credits, again don’t stress over them because it’s not a big deal. The only use for APs is if you absolutely hate the subject, but it is required for your program in 1st year only, and you want to skip the course entirely. I skipped 1st year physics and it was awesome because I got to watch others suffer while I never have to take it in university. Other than that, APs might actually be bad, in my opinion. If your program requires a second year course for the subject you really dread and you decide to bypass the first year course with AP, chances are you will forget what you learned in high school during your 1st year without that subject. Also, different universities have different curricula for a specific course. Just because the AP Biology covered certain material doesn’t mean the institution you attend will cover the same material. Therefore, you will most likely fall behind in 2nd year.

If you say, “Why don’t I just retake it in first year so I’m ahead of everyone?” Okay, well save the money and don’t write the exam. Then again, that means you will not truly experience the post-secondary workload until 2nd year, and if you plan to move out at that time you will find it extra-difficult to accommodate everything. If you say, “Why don’t I take the second year course in first year?” Think to yourself before making the decision: Will you be able to adapt to the new workload that easily?

Now I will give you my opinion on how to make a good schedule for yourself to keep yourself ahead and interested in the stuff you learn. If after first semester you feel the exams were not too bad and the workload was manageable, and you want to take electives or even 2nd year courses that AP made possible, try taking a correspondence course. The good thing about a correspondence course is that there are no lectures and no fixed time to go over certain material, so your week will be less hectic in terms of going from class to class. However, you will be responsible for learning all the material yourself for the midterm (if applicable) and the final exam, as well as certain assignments that may be given. Queen’s, at least, recommend not taking correspondence courses until 2nd year because it may be difficult for 1st years to handle, but I took correspondence 2nd year statistics during the second semester and I did well. Only take them if you are pretty sure you are capable to handling it.

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