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Grad studies at U of T? Any thoughts?


Blane
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When choosing a university for postgraduate studies you really need to consider two factors: program and location. Next you have to figure out which of the two is more important for you. I'd hate living in Toronto as well, but if the U of T program is well respected, it may open more doors for you in the future. On the flip side you'll be spending two years of your life there, so you may want to choose a location that would suit your personality the best. Tough call.

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Lots of great universities out there with amazing Grad programmes!

My point being that if you're not too keen on being in TO and you want to be in Ontario/Canada then there's Queen's and McGill and UBC amongst others with amazing graduate studies programs!

What's would be the focus of your PhD? Obviously that will have an effect on what school you go to. For example Queen's arguably the best place to go (as you may be able to tell, it's my alma mater) if it's in the area's of Commerce or Irish History (for example) but it's law program isn't considered to be one of the best.

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personally, I would not allow the environment I live in to dictate my future... However, I am not a fan of Toronto and I imagine for probably similar reasons, but there are some pretty cool neighbourhoods in TO... But, whatever reasons that are leading you back to do your PHd, they would probably outweigh avoiding Toronto--plus you've got a good team, and you would make the best of it, so I would not worry so much.

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I'd be focussing on International Development and Education. I did my M.A. at McGill, so I'm pretty familiar with what they've got to offer. Unfortunately, OISE seems to be #1 by a long shot in this area (without going international), so that's why I'm giving it serious thought.

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I don't know too much about grad programs at U of T, but I am currently an undergrad student there. I grew up in and around Toronto, and I really love it. So many people have bad perceptions of Toronto, and I can see some of the reasons why, but Toronto as a whole is amazing. I love it. It really depends which part of the city you live in, which part you hang out in, and who you spend you time with. I live in the Annex, which is a really nice neighbourhood, and also the neighbourhood that the OISE building is in. It's a fairly big building, has an education themed library in it, and also lets different community groups use the building for various events, even small community meetings. The U of T faculty of education used to share the building with the high school I went to, so I've seen plenty of OISE student teachers in my day, but i don't know anything about the actual program, especially beyond the B.ed program.

I think that if you suspend whatever judgments you have of Toronto, and live here for a while, you'll start to like it. It might seem impossible, being such a big city, but Toronto feels like such a close community sometimes, especially when it comes to local politics - people who live here really care about the city. And we could always use a few more heady folks.

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If it's education your looking into, then you're right, OISE's the leader. I also have my B.Ed. (that was through the University of Windsor - which was one of the longest periods of wasted ear time I've ever experienced) However, the one thing that was a common theme in our class was our professor's talking about seminars and lectures they went to at U of T held by some of the leading minds and authors in education that had tenure at U of T (if i'd payed more than any or little attention I'd be able to throw out some names)

And I agree with FairySari - I lived in TO for 3 years and I loved it. Really does depend on where you live. The annex is great. I was near the Beaches, in little portugal and in Forest Hill and I loved them all!

Good luck with whatever you choose ::

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Blane, I am in grad school at UofT right now. I did my undergrad in guelph, and was so comfortable with living in Gtown, having grown up in toronto, I really didn't want to go back to the T-dot. But after having given it some thought, I realized that I could just suck it up, live in toronto in pursuit of a better grad program (vs. guelph). It took a while to get used to the big smoke again, but after 2 yrs, I am pretty comfortable, though I know I would be having a better time (in terms of living, city vibe etc..) in guelph, I know it is all worth it.

I wouldn't let the city where your program of interest is in dictate where you go. After all, its not like you have to settle here, its just another phase of life. It comes down to what you value more - future opportunities, or your life over the course of 4 yrs.

In any case, get yer butt back to canada!

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