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Communications at McMaster University

Isabella (Year 2)

What did you wish you knew before going to your university? What made you choose this institution over all others? What are advantages and disadvantages of your institution or campus? List any advice for incoming first-year students about your university.

I chose McMaster because of the welcoming and positive experience I had when I first toured the university as well as its excellent reputation. Everyone was extremely friendly and enthusiastic when I visited the campus which made me feel very comfortable. I also chose this institution due to the wide variety of programs it offered. I have always had a passion for communications and marketing and McMaster is one of the few universities that offer this program! My advice to incoming first years is to go out of your comfort zone! University is a great opportunity to put yourself out there and meet friends for life. Whether it be joining a club you are interested in or trying out a course you never thought you would enjoy!

What did you wish you knew before choosing your specific program? What are the advantages and disadvantages of your program? List any advice for incoming first-year students about your program of study.

I wish I knew how much flexibility I had in first year and how much I would enjoy it! For Communications at McMaster, you only have two pre-requisite courses, which is introduction to communications and media. That means you have 8 electives left to pick whatever courses you would like! I initially found this challenging to find 8 other courses I would enjoy but later learned to love how much room I had to pick from a wide array of options! It made me realize my passion for other classes and streams. Something I want to mention for anyone who will be in the Humanities faculty at McMaster is that it is very essay and reading heavy. Your projects and assignments will mostly be papers that are worth a large portion of your grade. This seems daunting but you will notice yourself becoming a stronger writer over time.

What was your best experience at university?

My best experience at University was finding some of my closest friends! I was fortunate enough to find them down the hall of my residence and we would spend all of our time together!

What was your least favourite experience at university?

My least favourite experience at university was figuring out how to study and adjust to the workload. For the first couple weeks you are trying to figure out how to effectively study and complete work which varies between classes. But you will eventually find your rhythm and have a great system of managing everything.

What is the hardest part about your program and what were the steps that you took to overcome these hardships?

The hardest part of my program was learning how to write a university level essay. Luckily with the help of support from TA’s and peers it made it a lot more helpful! Something I would highly recommend is having your TA read over your thesis before you submit your paper during their office hours. This really helps your paper and their feedback is crucial as they will be the ones marking your essay! I strongly recommend taking advantage of this opportunity.

If you were able to take electives, what was your favourite elective? If you were not able to take electives, what was your favourite course and why?

My favourite electives were political science 1AA3 and organizational behaviour! This political science course focuses on Canadian politics. I thoroughly enjoyed this class because of the amazing professor, Dr.Alway. His enthusiasm and passion for politics made this class very enjoyable! You will focus on how the Canadian government works including the role of the senate and if it’s needed etc. You will learn about many examples of different government styles and past and present prime ministers. Organizational behaviour is a business course offered to all university students focusing on businesses leadership and Human Resources. You will learn different styles of leadership in the workplace and theories of how to manage groups effectively.

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