Lifestyle’s Declassified midterm survival guide
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By: Mitali Chaudhary, Sohana Farhin and Allison Mizzi
Nothing can fill you up (and taste as good!) as a bowl of your favourite fruit. With essentially no preparation required, this is the perfect solution for a sweet tooth, while providing you with vitamins and fibres. It just involves a bit of forward planning – if you sense a stressful week ahead, remember to load up on your fruits at the grocery store.
Being a healthier alternative to regular yogurt, with a smooth texture and taste, this is one of the most versatile options as a quick snack. You can top it with (almost) anything, like bits of cereal, almonds, bananas, granola, and honey and it is guaranteed to taste delicious. It’s best to stick with plain Greek yogurt, and toppings without additional sugars, to keep this snack healthy.
Almonds and other nuts
These can sustain you for a surprisingly long time, and are filled to the brim with unsaturated fats, protein, fibre, and minerals. They can be eaten alone, roasted as a substitute for potato chips, or sprinkled over some oatmeal or Greek yogurt (see below).
Veggies with hummus
Make mom proud with this one. Vegetables like carrots, celery, broccoli or cucumbers all deliver the crunch you crave while note taking, and taste great with any kind of hummus dip. The hummus adds a savoury flavour to the veggies, which are packed with essential nutrients, and it’s an excellent source of protein.
If you like company and tea, check out the Student Wellness Education Lower Lounge in the basement of MUSC. Open to all, the SWELL is a space for students to relax, learn about wellness education, and take a break from busy university life. The lounge features couches and chairs, perfect for students to work. Its basement location, across from the Underground, makes for a quiet and relaxing space, away from the hustle and bustle of MUSC. The SWELL features daily programming, including Mindfulness Mondays and Wellness Wednesdays, which can be great study break opportunities as well as a microwave, free tea, and free fruit on Fridays to keep your energy up as you cram.
Empty tutorial and lecture rooms
There are lots of empty tutorial and lectures rooms all over campus. Take your pick, whether it is ABB, BSB, the Arts Quad, or Hamilton Hall. These rooms are usually used for tutorials. However, they’re often left open and perfect for student use, particularly after the library closes. If you are looking for a quiet and private space for self-studying, empty classrooms are equipped with white boards or chalk boards that are begging for flow charts and diagrams. As such, they also work well for group studying. Bring some snacks and your books, and you’ll be set to study in your own private space.
If you like cafes, try studying in the hospital cafeteria, found on the main lobby in the second floor of the McMaster Children’s Hospital. There are lots of seats that are usually left empty at night. It is a great place for quiet studying, without the atmosphere of a library. There is also the “Corner Café” near the hospital entrance that is open 24 hours, seven days a week. With healthy meal options, as well as baked goods, coffee, and tea, the hospital cafeteria is the way to go if you need an energizing late night snack for your studying.
If you are looking for a calm and relaxing location, the waterfall room in the atrium of the Michael DeGroote Centre for Learning and Discovery is ideal. Its floor-to-ceiling windows let in natural light, a nice change from the fluorescence of most buildings on campus. If you enjoy studying outside, this is the next best thing, allowing you to appreciate natural greenery, rain or shine. With ample benches, the waterfall room is an excellent space for catching up on your reading, or listening to a lecture podcast.
Whatever kind of space you need to succeed, McMaster has it. Sometimes, one just needs to do a bit of searching. The above four places are some of our favourites. What are yours?