Civ Club Chair 2019-2020
Simonne Varela (CivE fourth year 1T9 + PEY), Chair of Civ Club, is a natural for the demanding role of coordinating student interests and exercising her social skills – her exuberance is infectious and can make an ordinary greeting seem like a special occasion.
Freshly back to school from a PEY (Professional Experience Year), Varela is accustomed to juggling many responsibilities simultaneously, and has added another extracurricular activity to her mix – intramurals soccer. “I’m doing intramural soccer this year, as I thought it would be a fun break from my other commitments.”
Varela encourages her student colleagues, no matter their year, to get involved in other pursuits while at U of T. “I think one of the biggest struggles in first year is you’re coming out of high school where you were expected to do all your homework and do all the practice problems. But it’s sort of important to understand that sometimes practice problems are just there for practice. Remember to study smart, rather than just studying all of it, because it can get really overwhelming with this course load.”
“Remember what actually matters to you. Also, just get involved and take a break from studying sometimes – that’s how you make friends with similar interests and remember it’s okay to ask for help when you need it.”
Philosopher’s Walk, known for its meandering path amongst greenery, is one of her favourite parts of campus – truly a hidden gem.