Monday, January 31, 2011

Wednesday, January 26, 2011

Cooking on a student budget

Check out this great site that features student-budget-friendly recipes. Users can rate the recipes they've tried and leave comments about the results. The site even has a feature where you can type in the ingredients you have on hand in order to find a recipe that uses them. Check it out at

Cooking at home is so much less expensive than eating out and if you save the leftovers you'll always have healthy lunches to bring to class. Don't forget, there are microwaves in the Hub that you can use to heat 'em up. And check out the Dollarama in College Park for great deals on glass carrying containers so you're not wasting money on disposable plastic stuff that's bad for the environment.

Do you have a favourite recipe that you like to make when you're low on funds? Wouldn't a Faculty of Arts cookbook be fun?

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Group Buys

I'm on a roll with the money-saving tips these days, so why stop now? Today I want to talk to you about group buy sites. They've become quite trendy over the past few months so you may already know about all the deals these sites can bring you but if not, read on!

The idea of a "group buy" deal is that by having a certain number of people commit to buying product or service they all get a huge discount (usually over 50%). The sites that are operating now allow you to subscribe in order to get e-mailed about a daily deal in your city. You have a limited number of time to purchase the deal (usually 24 hours) and after that period of time you are able to access your deal, which normally expires in 3-6 months.

Through these sites I have gotten 50% of organic groceries, 20 yoga classes for $20 and a harbour cruise of NYC for 60% off (that's another tip, if you're going on vacation remember to subscribe to the deals for that city).
Want to start saving the big bucks too? Here are the group buy sites I currently subscribe to:

With all these great deals being sent to my inbox every morning, the trick becomes deciding when to pass and when I really need to buy-in. ;)
Know of another group buy site operating in Toronto? Let me know at as it really is becoming quite the addiction!

Monday, January 24, 2011

Free film screenings on Tuesday nights

As you know, I'm always on the lookout to save myself, and consequently you, money whenever I can. So I was excited to hear about the PWYC documentary screenings being held on Tuesday evenings at Soybomb. The best part? What little money I can afford to give them goes to support a good cause (okay "good" being relative to where your politcal loyalties lie)!

Every Tuesday two documentaries are screened starting at 8:00pm in the Soybomb HQ (156 Bathurst St.). The screenings are a Pay-What-You-Can admission and all proceeds go to support the G20 Legal Defense Fund. The documentaries screened often have a social justice orientation and address a range of issues from the environment to D.I.Y. culture.

You can keep up to date about what documentaries are being screened by joining their Facebook group:!/group.php?gid=117635874952714&v=info

And if you catch a doc that you really love (or loathe!), consider submitting a review to this here humble blog by e-mailing your thoughts to :)

Friday, January 21, 2011

Blogger meeting today!

Whether you're considering a career in journalism, want to tighten up your writing skills or are just looking for a fun way to get more involved with the Faculty of Arts, come out to today's meeting and consider joining the Student Life Blogging Team!

When: TODAY! Friday, January 21st
Time: 1:00pm-2:00pm
Where: POD 344-L (in the Student Experience Centre)

If you're not able to make it but are still interested in getting involved, e-mail me at:

Thursday, January 20, 2011

1st Annual Faculty of Arts Leadership Conference: 1st and 2nd years students only

Oh the Places You'll Go!
1st Annual Faculty of Arts Student Leadership Conference

When: Saturday, February 5 · 9:30am - 4:30pm
Where: HUB Cafeteria

What: This exciting full-day conference is open to 1st and 2nd year students in the Faculty of Arts. Participants will have the opportunity to listen to amazing keynote speakers as well as to take part in several exciting workshops by selecting the topics that most interest them. The workshops will be designed to teach you about leadership and the different kinds of leaders, as well as help you gain the knowledge about yourself and develop the skills that you need in order to be an effective leader.

“Oh the Places You’ll Go” is a must-attend event for any student interested in getting more involved on campus, whether it be within your course union, student services or a student group, as well as those who are interested in social change, community building and anyone who plans on taking on a leadership position in their future career. Even if you are already involved, this conference will help you be a more effective leader in the positions you already have. Everyone has the capacity to be a leader and leadership can come in many forms. This conference will help you learn about what type of leader you are as well as how to develop and apply your skills in order to be the best leader you can be.

Representatives from Faculty of Arts course unions and various student groups will be available so in addition to the knowledge you’ll gain and the skills you’ll develop, this will be a great networking opportunity for anyone looking to get more involved on campus.

Lunch will be provided.

Limited spaces will be available so be sure to reserve your spot early.

For more information contact Student Life Coordinator Stephan Tang,, 416.479.5000 ext. 2124, or visit him in POD 344-M.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Switch it Up: a day of free anti-homophobia and anti-transphobia workshops

Reserve a spot to attend Switch it Up, a day of free anti-homophobia and anti-transphobia workshops, taking place:

Monday, January 31
Hart House, University of Toronto St. George (downtown) campus 10:00am to 4:30pm.

Breakfast and lunch will be provided to participants. The workshops are hosted by the Canadian Federation of Students-Ontario and the LGBT Youth Line ( ) and are open to allies.

As well, registration is now open for the Canadian University Queer Services Conference (CUQSC). The Conference is taking place in downtown Toronto, from Thursday January 27 to Sunday January 30.

To register for BOTH or either of the CUQSC or Switch it Up, please fill out the registration form hosted on the CUQSC website: .

Please note that while there is a registration fee for the CUQSC, the Switch it Up workshops are free, but space is limited so reserve space promptly. If you wish to only register for Switch it Up, please indicate this on the form, or notify Denise Hammond of the RSU ( and she will reserve a space for you.

The RSU wants to send as many people as possible in order to strengthen their work challenging homophobia and transphobia on our campuses and in our communities. In a year when the results of discrimination against queer and trans youth has gained widespread media attention, we should intensify our collective work to address the pervasive presence of homophobia and transphobia.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Arteries deadline extended!

The deadline to submit your papers for Arteries 2011: Ryerson's Undergraduate Research Conference has been extended until Monday, January 24th, 2011.

For all of the details about the conference and how to submit, visit:

Ready to make the academic transition?

Student life is full of transitions... The transition from high school (or college or the work force or your vacation in Europe) to university. You may transition from one program to another. And finally, the transition from university to either further education or the world of work.

Are you on track to make all of these transitions or are you a little unsure as to whether you have the skills and know-how to do so smoothly and successfully? If you have even the smallest sliver of doubt in your mind (and I know I do!), never fear...Sonny Wong is here.

Sonny Wong is the career counsellor for the Faculty of Arts and in addition to doing one-on-one sessions with students, he also hosts a series of workshops designed to give you the skills and knowledge you need to make these transitions as you take the next steps on your career path.

Whether you're in 1st year or 4th year, or anywhere in between, Sonny has workshops that will fit your needs. He offers workshops on academic success, finding the right career path for you, writing resumes and cover letters (I'm enrolled in this one... a must for any graduating students who are going to be on the job market in May), applying to graduate school and applying to teacher's college. Read all about these workshops and register online:

Workshop schedules for the Winter 2011 semester have been posted so scurry over now to make sure you get a spot.

Monday, January 17, 2011

So, You Think You Can Blog?

So, you think you have what it takes to be a Faculty of Arts Student Life blogger? Okay, so maybe you don't... yet. But I'm here to tell you that you do!

The Art of Life, the one and only Faculty of Arts student life blog is here to keep students up to date on the opportunities and events that are available to them within their program, faculty and university-wide. It is also a source of information related to everything student life, whether it be study tips or restaurant reviews, and serves to connect students based on the common issues they face and the things that interest them.

Members of the blogging team take on as large or as small of a commitment as they desire and have the opportunity to write posts about anything that interests them. Being a part of the team allows you to connect with other students, get more involved on campus and develop important employability skills, such as web-based communication.

If you have even the slightest interest in getting involved with the blog, whether it be to make a one-time contribution, to start regularly submitting posts or to advise us on the type of content you'd like to see on Art of Life, come out to our next blogger meeting on (DATE). This will give you the chance to meet the team, get some more info and ask any questions you might have.

Here are the details:

Date: THIS Friday (January 21st)
Time: 1:00pm-2:00pm
Location: POD 344-L (in the Student Experience Centre)

Not able to make it or have any questions? E-mail me (Sarah) at

And because such a blog post would not be complete without this image...


Friday, January 14, 2011

New Year, New You?

Welcome back, Artsies! It's a brand spanking new semester (and my last!) here at Ryerson University. It is my sincere wish that it is your best yet!

With that in mind, I'm curious: did you make any resolutions this year? Perhaps you want to develop better time management skills, study more effectively or get involved on campus? I'd love to hear!

And as always, we're here to help! So, if there is anything you'd like us to post about that would help you make this your best semester yet, please e-mail Do you want tips for studying, time management or stress reduction? Perhaps it's healthly living tips or pointers for living on a student budget that you're most interested in? I promise we'll have it all but if we know what you're most interested in, we'll know where to focus our blogging efforts. And if you're interested in joining the blogging team, as always, let us know!

Here's to making 2011 at Ryerson University the best that it can be! Cheers. ;)

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Register for the Ryerson White Ribbon Campaign "What Makes a Man" conference TODAY!

The Ryerson White Ribbon Campaign (RWRC) works to end men's violence against women and inspire men to be the best versions of themselves. We don't seek to blame or shame men, but encourage them to become part of a change affecting the lives of both men and women.

How did you come to understand 'What Makes A Man'? A discussion-focused conference looking at the spectrum of evolving identities, experiences and realities that determine ‘What Makes A Man’.

**REGISTER TODAY by emailing us at**
LIMITED SEATING - Only way to ensure a spot is to email!

...Saturday February 12th at Ryerson University
SCC 115, Student Campus Centre, 55 Gould St.

visit for latest information on speakers and contests.

Facilitators - Carlos Andrés Gómez and Kim Crosby

Lunch catered by SALAD KING

$5 Ryerson Students/Staff/Faculty
$10 for our friends outside of Ryerson
*All proceeds go to the White Ribbon Campaign*



‘Behind the Masc’ with Carlos Andrés Gómez
with Reilly Dow
Opening performance by winner of Urban Hip Hop Union's 2011 Poetry Slam

Admission $10 (free for Conference Delegates)
*All proceeds go to the White Ribbon Campaign*

Faecbook page -‘BEHIND THE MASC w/ Carlos Andrés Gómez (for 'What Makes a Man' Conference)-

Carlos performs spoken word pieces addressing various themes around masculinity and then the audience shares provoked thoughts, their reflections and own related stories. Performance to be illustrated by Graphic Recorder Reilly Dow (TEDx Ryerson performer visit for more info)


More info coming soon! Stay tuned for the names of speakers participating!

Write for more info or to volunteer

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

My search for bargain books

Along with this brand, shiny new semester comes the lists of pricey books we have to purchase. If you're anything like me, you're on a mission to find these babies for as little money as possible and I'm here to help! Here are my tips on places to look in order to get all your books while putting as small of a dent in your wallet as possible.

Book Stores:
The Used Book Room: SCC B03
The Used Book Room is an RSU service that allows Ryerson students to buy and sell used testbooks. That's right, you can make cash from selling your used books! Simply bring your book in and once it sells they will write you a cheque. Should your book not sell after a year, you'll be asked to come pick it up. There have been students lined up all week selling books so I'll bet they've got at least one that you need. I saved $50 on the textbook for one of my history courses this semester, SCORE!

The Discount Book Store: 258 Victoria St.
Not affiliated with Ryerson university, this store is another place to check out when you're looking to save money on this semester's books. Although their selection is limited, I've had good luck with them in the past. Plus, they're the people who are constantly handing out flyers on Gould Street so you can always check whether your classes are on the list to get an idea of whether or not they're likely to have the books you need.

BMV Books: 10 Edward Street
Another great book store that's close to campus. While they don't specialize in textbooks specifically I've had good luck finding novels for English courses as well as philosophy texts. Plus, it's super fun to browse around in. I'm often found lurking the Tom Robbins area in the Literature section, so if you see me, say hi. :)

Facebook groups:
"Ryerson Books for Sale":!/group.php?gid=2228381513&v=wall and "Used Ryerson Text Books For Sale":!/group.php?gid=41675229853&v=wall
Both of these groups allow students who are looking to buy or sell used textbooks to post what they have or are looking for in order to connect with other students.

Update your status: If all else fails, do a status update! I've had good luck just posting a simple "Does anyone have a copy of X that they'd be willing to sell?" In fact I'm getting one of my course readers FOR FREE just from using this method. It never hurts to ask.

Web sites:
Abebooks is a site that allows you to search the collections of booksellers from around the world. I've found textbooks for as low as $1 and the $119 Financial Management for Non-Profits textbook I have to buy this semester? Yep, I saved $40 on that... not too shabby! Book descriptions are very detailed and all purchases are backed by the web site.

This web site allows university students in Toronto to post the textbooks they are selling. You are then able to search by title, author or course code to find the books you need. This will require you to meet up with a complete stranger so if you go this route, be smart about it: meet in a well-lit public space, tell other people where you're going and bring a friend.

Perhaps this is an obvious one but Amazon often sells books for much less than their list price and offers free shipping on orders over $25. The site will also connect you to sellers who have used copies of the book for sale.

And my one last, sneaky trick for you is (and you'll have to save this one for next semester):
When our winter schedules were posted in December I e-mailed my profs to find out if I could get our reading lists in advance. They were all very accomodating and doing so allowed me to scour used book stores over the holidays (something I like to do anyway) and find used copies of as many of them as I could without scrambling to do so at the already hectic beginning of the semester.

Know of another good place to find used course books on the cheap? E-mail so I can add it to the list! :)

Calling all Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Trans, Queer Students AND allies!

Be a Part of the RSU Delegation to the 6th Annual Canadian University Queer Services Conference, Toronto.

The Ryerson Students’ Union is seeking active students to attend this annual conference (all fees paid for by the RSU). This conference is open to LGBTTQQ2S-identified AND allies who are involved in queer activism, service organizations, advocacy, or interested in queer/trans culture/issues.

We are looking for students who are interested in queer issues on campus and in the community, want to get more involved in advocacy and providing queer services, want to network with other queer university groups and students from around the country, and want to gain valuable skills.

Please note that only 5 spots will be made available.

To qualify, you must currently be a member of the RSU, either a full-time undergraduate or graduate student at Ryerson. Not a student? You can still attend. The conference is open to everyone, so feel free to register yourself if you are not a student, or not at Ryerson and want to attend.

If you are not chosen as part of the RSU delegation and want to attend by yourself, there are many affordable options, including attending day workshops, or choosing specific dates or events from the conference. Visit for more information.

How Do I Apply?

Submit a statement of interest to Rodney Diverlus, Vice-President Equity at In this statement, include your contact information, program, year, why you should be accepted, and what you are hoping to learn/bring back to campus. No resume required.

All statements should be received by Monday January 17th at Noon.

Conference Information

When: Wednesday January 26th- Sunday January 30th. Participants have the option of attending specific dates, or the weekend.
Where: University of Toronto, and other downtown locations
Theme: Queer Action Now!
Keynote Speaker: Cleve Jones, Queer and HIV/AIDS activist

What is this Canadian University Queer Services Conference (CUQSC)?

CUQSC is one of the few opportunities for queer and trans students from across the country to gather together and discuss topics based in skills training, anti-oppression, identity based constituencies, issues based topics, new campaigns and service development.

The Conference content ranges from skills development to issues-based discussions, guest lectures and social networking. The aim is still to create a national network of resources but also to create a national network of allies and communications to share campaigns, tactics, and support.

There will be various sessions, workshops, seminars, caucuses, and socials. Some workshop topics include: Queers in the Media, Que(e)rying Religion, Queerying your Curriculum, Analyzing Privilege, Stories of Racialised Queer People, Anti-Harassment Session, The Rural Queer, Sexy Disability, The Myth of Bisexuality, The Forgotten Acronyms: Trans people and Bisexuals Speak Out, and many others.

Theme: Queer Action Now
Drawing on the last 40 years of queer activism on campus, the Conference will focus on getting active in our communities. 2011 marks the 40th anniversary of the first "Gay Picnic" fundraiser by Toronto activist group Gay Action Now, and the 42nd anniversary of the first queer activist group in Canada, the University of Toronto Homophile Association (now LGBTOUT). So many years and victories behind us, we must ask ourselves "what next?" What are the pressing issues facing those of us who do not fit within heteronormative boxes? And how do we confront these issues on our campuses and across Canada?

The Conference aims to bring together diverse members of our communities for nearly a week for a combination of skills training, community-building, challenging discussion, and (of course) enjoying Toronto's queer scenes. As a city and campus full of queer and queer-related resources, we will be incorporating as much of that expertise as possible into the programming.

Queer Action Now promises the skills training required to build a movement, the workshop and issues discussion to define the movement, and a community involvement to build coalitions between our peoples, places, and organizations. All for the sake of Queer Action Now!