Personal Development, Student Life

The First 5 Mistakes First Year’s Make

So you’ve made it! You’re at Ryerson! Those four awkward, puberty-filled years you suffered through weren’t for nothing! You’re living in the heart of downtown Toronto, the greatest city in the world. No way anything could be less than perfect now that you’ve left high school!

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You’re not as clueless as you were four years ago, but moving to Toronto does change the game. There are a few common mistakes every new Ryerson student shares, and maybe this will help you avoid making some cringe-worthy mistakes.

Not Finding Classes Ahead Of Time

“It’s just one class” I thought. “I know which direction south is, and where Kerr Hall is, piece of cake”

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Artist’s rendition of Kerr Hall

This is such a cringe worthy action because it results in the easiest way to look like a moron to your classmates and professor: this newbie is so ignorant that they couldn’t even be bothered to follow simple directions. So spend an hour finding your classes the day before if you value respect of others and your own self-esteem.

Stopping on Yonge Street (for certain people)

One of the awesome things about Ryerson is all the free swag we get from being so close to one of the busiest intersections in Canada. Seriously, you can go the year without buying Mio, Chipotle or soap (maybe you should buy soap). But if you see guys hawking around Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups, or see a kindly middle-aged woman offering stickers, avoid them. The shaming they offer when you take one of what they’re offering without paying is like the shaming your mother gives you for taking an extra helping of cake.

Being Unaware of Your Surroundings

Like any city, Toronto has its nice neighborhoods and its less savory ones. While I personally have felt nothing less than safe on campus, a few blocks east is one of the more difficult neighbourhoods in Toronto. If you have to head in that direction late at night, we have a lovely public transit system that runs twenty-four hours a day. It might take twenty minutes to catch a streetcar, but that just gives you plenty of time to grab a burger and Starbucks!

Sticking With The Classics

You probably realized Ryerson was going to be different from the moment you saw we had classes in the Eaton Centre, or that we have guest lectures from Deadmau5. So if you’re going to such a cool school … why are you still eating at the same chain pub you were in your hometown? You’ve got almost every kind of food imaginable in eyesight. Your campus pub has a quinoa burger! Are you sure you wanna have another tower of onion rings again?

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Kinda like ignoring the thousands of books in the library to read this baby again…

Blowing All Your Moolah

We have two Forever 21s within walking distance. There are at least four Subways on campus. McDonalds just seems to be multiplying nearby. It’s very, very easy to waste all of your money on things you don’t need, because you were too excited by the autumn jackets at Banana Republic or just couldn’t deal without a pumpkin spiced latte. I recommend bringing cash to school and leaving your plastic at home, because not only does it remind you just spent six dollars on a coffee, but you only have so much to waste in the first place.

Now off you go, into the wild and unknown – hopefully feeling prepared to make this first year at Ryerson the best it can be!

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RU Student Life
By students, for students: RU Student Life is dedicated to sharing stories of what it's really like to be a Ryerson student. We strive to make everything inspiring, informational, amusing, useful, and critical, and we believe every one of us has a story worth sharing. Visit studentlife.ryerson.ca/about to find out more.