Darien Fong

Student photo Darien Fong

Year: Fourth

Home Town: Sharon, Massachusetts, USA

Program of Study: Rotman Commerce

College: St. Michael’s College


Why did you choose U of T?

I immediately fell in love with U of T when I came to take a campus tour; it was even raining that day. The campus made me feel like I was in Harry Potter; I absolutely loved that you could get this campus feel while still being in the heart of downtown Toronto. Not being familiar with Toronto, I loved the diversity and culture; visiting U of T really solidified my choice. The opportunities due to the location are immense and this continues to be a main reason why I love to be a part of U of T.

What advice would you give to first year students?

Make sure to be a well-rounded student. Grades are always an important aspect of university, but they are not the ‘be all, end all’. Make sure to get involved on campus by joining any of the variety of clubs or organizations. Also make sure to take advantage of the opportunities that come with going to a prestigious university in the heart of Toronto. Because of the location and proximity to everything, you really have the opportunity to expand your network and also experience some of the advantages of living downtown.

What surprised you the most about university?

What surprised me most about the university was how small it actually felt. Coming to U of T, I was nervous, but once I arrived, I realized there are a lot of opportunities to get a close-knit community feel. First, the college system really broke down the university into a smaller scale where it was a lot easier to make friends who were in the same position as me but come from different backgrounds. Second, I joined the first-year learning communities where I was able to easily make friends with fellow first-years in the same program as me. I am still friends with a lot of the people who were in my FLC, and still have classes with them in my 4th year. Lastly, in my upper years, when I was in my program, I was able to really feel like I was a part of a community. A lot of the extracurriculars which I joined introduced me to an even bigger network of people.

What has been your favourite course so far?

My favorite course so far has been astronomy. I absolutely love Dr. Reid as a professor; he is such an engaging and dynamic prof, even though it is one of the few large classes taught in con hall. I don't feel disadvantaged by being in a large class because he has found the right balance between fun and informative.

What is your favourite thing about Toronto?

The food! I am a huge foodie and love the variety of food around every corner. Before even moving in on campus I made a list of places to eat when I come up and I'm happy to say I've tried 80% of my list!