The student life at U Toronto can get really depressing and living in the city is expensive. But anything that’s free is automatically a hundred times better which is why I have put together 10 things to do around University of Toronto that will remind you of how nice life can be.
1. Free Cookies and Tea!
The perfect pick me up that everyone needs! At the UC Commuter Student Center, every Monday to Thursday from 2:30-3:30 pm, they serve free cookies and tea. The cookies are absolutely amazing and they usually have either double chocolate chip cookies, chocolate chip cookies, or a banana/nut cookies with tea that you can customize to your taste. You can enjoy all this in a wonderful room on the left-hand side when you walk in. Unfortunately, this is only available from September-April, sorry summer students!
2. Crafty Thursdays!
Want to relax your mind and feel like a kid again? Then you have to attend these free weekly drop-in craft workshops! You can make a lot of different things and keep them. This year, we made bath bombs, vision boards, custom-stamped journals, phone cases and so much more. Oh and they will have free coffee or tea that you can enjoy too.
Every week is different, so be sure to keep an eye on their website here.
3. Fun, Food, and Friends
We all go through those lonely times when our wonderful friends slowly start drifting away. Don’t worry, all hope is not lost. If you ever feel lonely, this event gives you the perfect opportunity to meet new people, have simple, refreshing conversations, and maybe even find a new bestie. Every Wednesday from 4-5 pm on the 3rd floor of the calming Multi-Faith Center, people gather around a table with a platter of cheese, crackers, fruits, and other filling snacks to refuel. And if you’re like me and not interested in small talk, walk in, smile, grab some snacks and walk out- trust me, everyone will understand and you won’t be penalized!
4. A Free Museum Date
The Art Gallery of Ontario is not part of University of Toronto but it is literally a 5-minute walk from the St. George Campus. They have many exhibitions that people travel far to see and you can go for free! Every Wednesday from 6:00-9:00 pm, the museum is open for everyone to enjoy. So, dress up and take your partner, friends, family, or even yourself on a date to this beautiful place. It’s something you have to do and besides, it’s scientifically proven that seeing art is beneficial for your mind!
5. Varsity Blues
Every movie that is set in university has a scene at the games. Your university experience is incomplete without attending at least one game and at UofT, it’s the main way to get that school spirit. Luckily as students, admission is free! But that’s not all! Every time you swipe that T-card to enter, you receive a complimentary chuck-a-puck at hockey for a chance to win more prizes. And if you sign up for Varsity Rewards, each entry earns points which can be traded in for cool prizes like Varsity t-shirts, socks, hoodies, phone chargers, blankets, and more. Plus, the games mean there will be lots of attractive people to admire. So, what are you waiting for?
6. Free Coffee
Almost everyone loves coffee, which is why finding it free is very hard. Luckily for you, I’ve succeeded and I am going to let you on in my little hidden treasure. There is free coffee served on campus! You can find it every day from 9 am – 3pm on the third floor of the FMUA building. But don’t blame me if it runs out, it all depends on how lucky you are!
7. Meditation Time
UofT is huge and getting around campus on foot can get tiring fast. Add that to the daily stress that the university life brings and it’s a miracle if you can make it through a week without getting burned out. Fortunately, there are many free yoga and meditation exercises available at many places on campus. One of my favorites are the meditation sessions offered in the Activities room in the Hart House every Wednesday. They help reduce stress and increase energy levels and are led by a professional. Anyone can drop-in at any point in the year and there is no registration required.
You can find a list of all the different places and times here.
8. Movie Nights
This is a great way for resident students to take a break from their dorms without leaving the campus. Every Friday at the Innis Town Hall at 7 pm, they show a different movie. The movies aren’t the ones you would find at cinemas but that’s what makes this so special. The FFF (Free Friday Films) Program shows movies from all over the world so you’re guaranteed to walk away with some new knowledge you can impress your friends with and a good time.
The movies and dates can be found here.
9. The AstroTours
All of us have a little astronomer buried deep inside. This opportunity is the perfect way to let that nerdy side out. This tour usually happens on the first Thursday of most months and starts at 8:10 pm so you can see the stars well. It runs for around two hours, and consists of three parts: a talk, planetarium shows and telescope observing. The talk is an hour long by professionals that catch you up on the latest mysteries of astronomy, in an easy to understand language of course. Using telescopes is always fun and they have a cool alternative for the cloudy nights too. The best part is that tickets are free!
Find details here.
10. Daily UofT Events
Finally, I have to mention the rest of the events that UofT is always hosting. As a research university, there are always smart people coming to talk about their discoveries. You can network, get training, and discover ways to make a difference. And if you’re smart, you can do all three while getting a full breakfast and/or lunch for free too.
Click here for my favorite link to always keep an eye on.
Your tuition and fees have made University of Toronto the place that it is. Make sure you get your money’s worth!