Monday, 2 December 2013


As students we have quite the list of things we wish for these holidays. Here are a few of MONIKA'S FAVOURITE THINGS 2013! Except unlike Oprah, Im not actually giving any of these away ;)

Yup, this is number one... no explanation needed but wouldn't it be great to have no exams? 

Now back to reality... 

2. Bluetooth Handset Gloves
Yes, you'd look ridiculous but as soon as you explain yourself to people you'll also be really cool. This is the new (and super cool) bluetooth handset gloves. Keep you warm while talking on the phone and look friggin cool while doing it! Check out the gloves here

3. BIG Mug
For your BIG cup of coffee! All those all nighters need all that coffee (I love coffee by the way)!!!! (WARNING: Drinking a cup of coffee as I write this blog post). Get this awesome mug here

4.  Alarm Clock App For Your Phone
I WILL turn my alarm clock off in my sleep! Therefore I don't go to sleep unless I know Ill be awoken by a math problem. No, it does not sound like a nice way to wake up, but neither is waking up and knowing you've missed your class (Oops!). Search on your smart phone!

5. Clip On Cup Holder 
At the library, at home, or on the bus- keep your hands free while still enjoying a cup of tea! 
Downfall: It won't hold your "I Like Big Mugs and I Can Not Lie" Mug :( 

That wraps up just some of my FAVOURITE THINGS! Hope you enjoyed! Got something favourite of your own? Comment below! Good luck with exams folks, and even more luck finding gifts this season :)

Until Next Time, I'll Be Yorking Around, 

Monday, 25 November 2013

ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE 2013: Survival Kit

That's right! December 9th marks the first day of exams... otherwise known as the start of a month long  ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE!!! Ok, that might be a little dramatic of me but...

... Im sure we've all felt like this...

... and seen students looking like this...

... during exam time (hence the name... ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE)!!!

Whats a student to do?

Continue reading this blog post to find out how to survive the ZOMBIE APOCALYPSE while studying like a beast for those exams ;)... that's what!

Everyone knows a good place to stake out during a zombie apocalypse is the KEY to survival! Theres a few good places on campus which can offer you protection from brain-hungry zombies, abd I have rated them conveniently form "best place" to "worst place":

#1 Your Bedroom: I know, I know, every time you glance at your bed you want to sleep but you CANT THINK LIKE THAT! Not only are you far away from the zombies roaming around campus, but you have easy access to food, a bathroom, and your bed (AFTER doing your school work).

#2 Study Rooms: This is a little more riskier as it requires you to walk around campus, but as long as they don't smell your fear- you should be fine. Not only do you have walls all around you in a study room, and room to do your school work, but there's also... LOCKS! Zombies cant open locked doors- duh! Book yourself a library study room here and get ready to be protected from everything else going on around campus.

#3  Common Library Areas: Yea this one's once again a pretty risky location, but as long as you don't make eye contact and don't say anything to anyone- you should be fine! Just mind your own business, blast tunes from your headphones and study away. If there's a risk of infection- RE-LOCATE!

#4 Bathroom: If all else fails go to the nearest bathroom, lock the door, and stay in there until the coast is clear! The downfall is that there are no desks to do your school work in, which is why this location is from extreme circumstances, and only for a short period of time.

YOU DON'T KNOW WHEN YOU'LL HAVE ACCESS TO FOOD AGAIN! So make sure to STOCK UP whenever you can! Food is just as important as shelter is during a zombie apocalypse.

If you have a deficit in nutrients THEY... WILL... GET... YOU! Here are some TIPS for staying stocked up while hiding out in shelter:

#1 Prepare Meals Ahead of Time: Yes it can be time efficient, but how else are you going to stay fed without leaving you shelter? In addition this is cost effective, and ensures you're getting healthy home made stuff ;)

#2 Eat Your Greens: Sorry, junk food won't give you the nutrition you need to get through Zombie Apocalypse 2013. Move over chips and fast food, hello veggies and fruits. Junk food will only make you sluggish, slow, and won't give you brain power. Veggies and fruits will keep you awake, alert, energized, and give you power to fight off those zombies!

3. Equipment
Pack your bags with everything you need to get through this tough time...

#1 Pens & Pencils: You don't wanna be caught off guard, nor do you want to be forced to rely on a zombie for these bad boys. Pens and pencils are a necessity as you WILL need them some point in time in the next few weeks.

#2 Photo ID: Others will need to know you can be trusted in the midst of all the chaos, so a photo ID will come in handy during an exam. Drivers license, and a student ID are both great ID's!

#3 Water: Gotta get some H2O in your system, especially when you've just written for an hour non-stop, or when you've just fought your way though crowds of zombies. Water can give you that pick me up during your exam, plus being dehydrated during an exam or while studying is quite possibly the worst  thing in life! PLUS: Bring a re-usable water bottle and the hydration station provides to water for you!

#4 Sweater: Zombie's are cold hearted creatures. Being around them, especially during an exam will get you feeling cold too- bring a sweater to ensure optimal comfort during your times of struggle.

#5 Watch: I know your cell phone serves this purpose nowadays, but Im sorry to be the one to tell you that during a zombie apocalypse, cell phones are not allowed to be used. If you're lucky you'll be in a room with the time, but if you're not: get prepared for the most stressful time of your life! One of the worst things is not knowing how much time you have left during an exam.

Phew, that was a lot of information but I hope I have equipped you all with the information and skills you need to survive!

Dont forget: any zombie fighting student needs their ZZZZ's as well! Being sleep deprived won't help you much- getting your 6-8 hours however will let you take over the world!

Goodluck and may the odds be in your favour during 2013 Zombie Apocalypse: Monika out!

Until Next Time, I'll be Yorking Around,

Monday, 18 November 2013

TOP 5: Study Music

When I got a lot of school work to do either 
a) Relaxing 
b) Pump up 
c) Chill
music will do the trick for me to stay motivated. There are times when Ill write a whole essay while jamming out to the same album on repeat! The following are my TOP 5 songs to listen to when studying:

5. Daft Punk: Tron Legacy Soundtrack: I haven't watched the movie, but I sure am familiar with the soundtrack. Lots of the songs on the soundtrack don't have lyrics, and the music is a little techno but upbeat which is perfect for  me!


4. Classical Music: And no particular artist- just about anything with a piano and violin jamming out will do. Its so relaxing, whats not to like?  Be careful: music that is too relaxing might put you to sleep which isn't ideal when studying ;)

3. Pink Floyd/ Easy All Stars: Pink Floyd's album dark side of the moon is one of the greatest albums of all time (in my opinion). Easy All Stars did their own take on the album which produced Dub Side of the Moon. Whether you choose to listen to the original Pink Floyd version, or opt for something with a reggae twist to it like Easy All-Stars, both chill tunes will help you get through those pesky essays! 

Pink Floyd: 

Easy All Stars:

2. Girl Talk: All Day: This tune is over an hour long, and is a mash up of 100's of upbeat songs you can think of. Its best for when you're writing and not reading, as lyrics in songs can get mixed up with what you're reading!


1. 8Tracks: When in doubt, 8Tracks! If you have not heard of this website before- your life is about to change (for the better). 8Tracks allows you to put in your mood, or genre you're looking for, and it will generate hundreds of playlists other people have uploaded on the site. I use this website for when I need something other than the songs above. Check out 8Tracks here

That's about it for me! Remember not to let your music choice to distract you from whatever task you have at hand! Happy studying while jamming out to those tunes! 

Until Next Time, I'll be Yorking Around,

Monday, 11 November 2013

Holy Moly... Its Time to GRADUATE?! Part 1

The title says it all. My almost 5 years at York University are almost coming to an end and it's definitely  a bitter sweet feeling. It's a cliche but it honestly feels like yesterday when I was getting a ride to Frosh Week from my mom, but here we are now- and Im getting ready to graduate!

This blog post is the first of a mini-series which will continue throughout the year. It will give you an insight into the things I as a graduating student in June 2014 (knock on wood- don't wanna jinx it at this point!).

Keep checking back either as a graduate who wants to make sure their doing everything they need to in order to graduate for June, or as a student who wants to know what they will be needing to do- sooner than one might think.

It's November so here's a few things I've been doing to get prepared for June 2014:

1. Apply To Graduate

I'd say this is probably the most important step! How are you gonna graduate without letting York know you want to graduate? The process to apply to graduate is all online and super straight forward- all it takes is a few clicks. You can apply here and make sure to do it ASAP because the deadline to apply is JANUARY 31, 2014 (if you want to graduate for June 2014)

Applying to Graduate!

2. Book Your Glamorous Photo Shoot

Ok, maybe it might not be all that glamorous, however I think it's a pretty important picture so booking it sooner rather then later is smart! You should get an email from your College or Faculty to book your photo shoot however if not, you can get information here. I've booked mine and it's coming up in December!
Guess what... You can add in props to your photo shoot!
No, not me (I wish), but its my clever friend Eleni!

3. Keep Up Those Marks!

Since its my last year, the pressure is on to keep up my marks! There is no more "next year" so it's now or never (ok, maybe thats a little too dramatic but you get the point). 

Well said inspirational photo! 

4. Make a "Last" Academic Advising Appointment 

You might want to do this earlier than November, however I made one a few days ago just to make sure I've done or am doing all the classes I need to graduate from the program I would like (and I;m happy to say i'm on the path to graduation). Making a last academic advising appointment will help ensure you're right on track, and will ease your mind a little! 

That sums about all that needs to be done for graduation so far! Keep checking back to stay in the loop on my journey to graduation!

Until next Time, I'll be Yorking Around, 

Monday, 4 November 2013

Co-Curricular Days FTW (For The Win)

Having a few days off is SUPER nice as it allows some breathing room for getting readings done, and fitting in some relaxation time before work picks up in the last few weeks of the semester (end of semester soon? say whaa)... On that note, here's a few things I did the past few days:

School Work
Assignment Necessities!
Getting that school work done early in the days off is key- that way you have optimal relaxation time in the last few days!

Went Up North 
As I said, relaxation and self care time is important when you have a few days off, so that is exactly what I did over the weekend
Saw Deer! :D (can you see it?! can you?!)

Went hiking which led to this beauty of a view!

The co-curricular days tend to slip through your fingers super fast (I know they did for me). And your Monday back can sorta feel like this...

(another thing I did during the days)
BUT... you can get through it :)
Planning ahead, and using your time wisely is important for your academics and for yourself! These days were just what I needed to get through this last month + exams!

What did you do during your co-curricular days?! I hope they were well spent doing what you love!

Until Next Time, Ill be Yorking Around,

Monday, 21 October 2013

Reasons You Should Play Intramurals

  1. Sports played by colleges in a fun environment
  2. Colleges compete for the York Torch 

Intramural's can be a daunting thing to get involved in. "What if Im not good enough?", "I've never played sports" and "But I don't know anyone" are the things that commonly run through peoples minds when being asked to join intramural's. Im here to change your mind! Presenting.... reasons you should play intramurals:

Yes you will be playing sports. No, you don't have to be a pro. Almost every sport offered in intramurals is offered in either TIER ONE or TIER TWO. Tier one is more competitive, and people usually have played the sport before, however tier two is way less competitive and more fun (giving a chance for everyone to play)!

Batting in softball...
needless to say that ball didn't go anywhere....

Yes fun. Just because you're at University doesn't mean you have to give up on fun! And this is a perfect way to get some fun in your life. Intramurals allow you to be goofy, get your body moving, and interacting with other people- how can you say NO people?!

RAGE dodgeball. Bowling. Inner-water basketball. YES. Those are all sports you can play FOR FREE here at York University. They bring the fun to a whole 'nother level, and you may never get a chance to play these sports anywhere else ;) 
Me in action.. at Rage Dodgeball
(its THIS FRIDAY btw)!
Before I came to York I had never played football, let alone knew the rules. And this applied to a lot of sports. Intramurals have allowed me to become more familiar with sports, which I am pretty happy about (no longer do I have to pretend to know what people are talking about the night after a "crazy game")

Finding it hard to get to the gym or to do that 5k a day? Intramurals are a perfect way to incorporate moving your body everyday!

AND if you're having a hard time fitting in study breaks, and socializing time... INTRAMURALS will cover all that for you too! 3-in-1: its s study break, you socialize while playing, and you're getting a workout in :D perfect right?!

Lastly... if sports 100% are not your thing, absolutely, what so ever.... AT LEAST get involved with something at York!

Until Next Time, I'll be Yorking Around, 

Tuesday, 15 October 2013

What Im Thankful For...

So its Thanksgiving weekend which means time for reflection and thanks! What am I thankful for? Its a tough one because there is so much I am lucky to have in my life, however one big thing that I am thankful for is the opportunities I have been so grateful to have in my life! These include...

Opportunity to snowboard!

Opportunity to be a Don for the 2013/2014 school year!

Opportunity to work the RED Zone!

Opportunity to be on a website!

Opportunity to run a Half Marathon the upcoming weekend! 
... we shall see how it goes ;)

Hope you all had a relaxing weekend full of thanks!

Until Next Time, I'll be Yorking around,

Monday, 7 October 2013

Brace Yourselves... Essays Are Coming

I have written quite a few essays during my time here at York University. Since it is that time of the year where essays will be due soon I thought Id give some of my best tips which have helped me along the years...

1. Start Them Early

May seem like the most overrated recommendation but its so true! Essays take time because you need to read materiel, do the research, and then actually pump out X amount of pages filled your arguments and ideas. Point is: give yourself enough time... its the difference between a D essay and a A essay.

2. Talk To Your Professor
They may seem scary and intimidating but most profs are nice and approachable. Feel free to ask them questions regarding your essay and it'll give you a feel for what they are looking for in your paper.

3. Writing Centre
The Writing Centre is a service on campus which provides FREE help with all things essay. They offer help through various ways (15 mins drop ins, 1 hour appointments, and even online help). Get more information about them here or visit them at S311 Ross South.

4. Learning Commons

Located on the second floor of Scott Library, the learning commons can provide assistant with your essays too! They can provide help with writing, research, learning skills, and career services. Furthermore they have workshops going on all the time which can help with achieving those A+ essays! Get more information here.

5. Ref Works

Ref Works is my knight in shining armour (in the essay world). Ref works is a tool to make those tedious bibliographies, much easier. It lets you input your sources, and when your done, you ask it to generate a bibliography and citation in the format you have request. Check out my previous blog post which goes into detail about RefWorks or check out their website here.

6. Think About Past Lectures
There is a reason you've been assigned an essay on a particular topic... and it's not to torture you. Its so you can enhance what you've learned in the class so far. Think back on past themes, topics, and vocabulary you have learnt so far in the class and find ways to tie them into your essay. This will show you understand what you've been learning in class which will then give you a better mark!

Good luck with those essays,

Monday, 30 September 2013

Phone Applications Every York University Student Needs

We're living in a day and age where we can do just about anything with technology! That's why I thought I'd make a blog about the phone apps every York University student should have:

1. York University Recreation App:

This app is brand new and has a ton of fitness features any gym goer needs. From checking the operation hours on a particular day, or to find out about any cancellations this app has it all!

2. York University Safety App:

This is also a new app which allows you to have all of our safety resources at your finger tips. You can get goSafe's number for those late night classes, call York security directly from the app, and even get directions from one building to another! I think it's much more than just a "safety app" which is why I think every student should download it. 

3. York University Bookstore "Sell Your Textbooks" App

This is a super simple and super easy app to use! It essentially gives you access to a bookstore marketplace which makes it easier to sell your used books. Additionally you can hold up your used book to "scan" the bar code which then lets you know how much money you can get from the bookstore for your used book. Get more information here

4. UBC Schulich School of Business App 

Although the app is indeed made for Schulich students, anyone can download and it has resources any York student can use. This app is provided by the Schulich School of Business and the Undergraduate Business Council, and sponsored by the CGA. It provides access to events, news, and a directory of services on campus! Get more information here

Friday, 20 September 2013

Im Back- An Update!

It's been a while since I've written a blog post so I thought it would be a good idea to write one now! Orientation, and the start of school sure can be hectic, however there's usually an abundance of new things going on so I thought I would do an update on what's been going on with me:
  • After 2 full weeks of training, I am Don here at York University! So far it's been a great experience and am loving it every step of the way. For more information on what a Don does and how you can get involved with Residence Life click here
The Vanier Residence Don team for 2013/2014! With
York University president, Mamdouh Shoukri.
  • I am going into my 5th year at York. With changes to my major, and being involved on campus I have come back for a 5th and last year. It's bitter-sweet knowing it will be my last so I am making sure to make the most out of it!
  • I am training for a half-marathon! I've been an avid runner for a few years now however this will be my FIRST half marathon. I am super excited for it. You can follow my training and see how the race goes by following me on twitter @MonikaSoniaG
Some friends and I- post York University Terry Fox run!
I ram 10k! :)
  • Still working at the RED Zone- Of course!!! I have come back for another awesome year at the RED Zone, and I am excited to see many of your faces stopping by to ask questions or even just to say hi! On the first day of school we had over 1000 students stop by- crazy!
What has been going on in your life?! The start of school is a perfect time to plan ahead with school, and extra curricular activities. Some things I do at the start of the school year:
  • Schedule my due dates, tests, essays, etc on my calendar. This way I can plan ahead and it is easier to visualize when I have school work due. 
Some of my due dates for October! Eek!
  • Look for some clubs I want to get involved with! September is the BEST time to get involved. Many clubs are recruiting students, and looking for new members so go out and get involved! To help you, go onto YuConnect where you can find all the clubs you can get involved with (500+ in case you didn't know). 
YUConnect homepage
  • Look for an on-campus job. Right now is the time to apply! York University has over 1000 jobs on campus that are ONLY open to STUDENTS (you!). So, if you're already looking for a job why not check what jobs are open now at York. You can find them over at the Career Centre
I also indulge in getting brand new notebooks :) Anything else you usually do during the start of a brand new school year? Let me know!

Goodluck with the school year everyone! Before you know it, it'll all be over so make the most out of your time!!!!

Until Next Time, I'll be Yorking Around,