From public speaking to flying over 4000 km across the world, summer sixteen was one of the most amazing yet. I started off my summer with enrolling myself into three summer courses: an online mental health course offered through the social work major course list, a molecular biology part 2 course which would be taken in the duration of July and August, and an interesting course called Communication, Presentation Skills, and Voice. I had taken the latter course because I had recommended it to a friend last summer but was unable to take it myself that year and heard back really good things for the course. So I decided to give it a shot.

Here I was, in my public speaking class, looking at the course syllabus on the first day in the basement of ACE (thank god for AC but I felt like I needed a sweater in every class!). What I found was that our assessment was all through presentations. Five major presentations, two written reflections, and a critique were mainly what we had to do to excel in the class. Sooner than later, our first unmarked presentation came rolling around and we had to talk about our heroes. I had definitely chosen my mom as my hero. It was a good first attempt at presenting, but I felt I could do way better. Throughout the term, we played bonding games that helped us break the ice with our peers and I really got to enjoy my time with this class. By the end, it had come down to our last presentation and I talked about anxiety: what it was, how it affected so many lives of students, what the treatments were, and a personal story. My presentation was on the very last day of class and after we were all done, our professor had made a memorable video with all of our favourite moments together and it was one of the saddest things I had felt in a long time. I felt sad that my class had ended; I didn’t know I would get attached so easily.

The online mental health course was dropped before I could even get the course material on Moodle, partly because I found out that the professor I was hoping for did not end up teaching the course. So after my public speaking course had ended, I knew it was time for Molecular Biology 2, a course I had been dreading for a very long time. When the course started, I was instantly happier because to my surprise, I had 4 friends already in the class. We sat together and listened to the lectures; it was a very long three hour class with hard content. Anyhow, I managed to get by and it was time for the first midterm. At the very same time, my friend from Kansas, USA came to visit me! We spent so much time together because it was the first time she had come to see me since we had met three years ago. When she left, my focus was back on school but the content of the course was very hard. I didn’t do well on my midterm and ended up dropping the course. After dropping the course, I felt like I had so much free time so I booked my driving test during the last week of august. I also contemplated going back to my previous job to earn some money or doing something similar so that I would keep myself occupied. But then I came across a field course on the York University biology website.

The field course was based in California with a professor I had taken before. I immediately signed up for the course as there was only one spot left because it had always been my dream to visit California (#bucketlist). Since I was visiting California to study, I went a week earlier with my brother to explore Los Angeles with him and my family in California. The field course was one of the best decisions I made because it earned me the same amount of credits as my summer course that I had dropped and it was filled with VIEWS. I loved exploring, travelling and site-seeing California.

Overall, the summer ended with an awesome trip to California and I had just come back with four days to prepare for the upcoming school year. But looking back, I’m glad and thankful for a wonderful summer.


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