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thesamasaurus

Is commuting to Queens from Toronto daily by train a terrible idea?

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Posted (edited)

I spent a large chuck of my undergrad commuting to school and actually really learned to enjoy the time alone to work without many distractions, but obviously the workload in undergrad is considerably less.   You can get unlimited train travel passes from Via as a student.  It looks like it takes about three hours door to door.  That would mean about 30 hours of commuting per week, but most of that time you could spend working, so I feel the only part that would really feel like "commuting" would be the time between my place in Toronto and Union, and from the Kingston train station to school.  The train ride is about 2 hours and I feel it could be comperable to working in a library.

I would love to save $6000+ per year and be able to spend more time  with my girlfriend.  Has anyone attend Queens and have info about when classes start and end (earliest and latest) each day, and approximately how many classes they had that start at 9am or end at 9pm?  Did anyone you know try this, and would you strongly advise against it?

Thanks!

 

Edited by thesamasaurus

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When I attended, the earliest classes were 8 and there were some evening classes (can't recall the hours on those.

Personally, there is absolutely no way I'd want to spend 30 hours a week commuting. 

 

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First year would be really tough because your schedule is totally set. After that you could schedule all of your classes over 1-2 days and that wouldn’t be bad. 

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Short answer is, yes, it's a terrible idea, for several reasons. How are you going to connect to classmates and ECs if you're commuting on a daily basis and never around on weekends? Let alone the time involved, but the unreliability of VIA would make this a nightmare scenario. 

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Don't do it! 1L is the time to get to know your classmates, and to waste lots of time as you figure out how to efficiently do law school readings. It's also the time to try out different extra-curricular and outside activities. Being on/around campus (or at least closer than 3 hours away) is important in order to be able to connect with what's happening at school and not risk missing out on opportunities - whether it's the opportunity to make friends, or some event or another that could help you with school/jobs/career path.

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4 hours ago, thesamasaurus said:

I spent a large chuck of my undergrad commuting to school and actually really learned to enjoy the time alone to work without many distractions, but obviously the workload in undergrad is considerably less.   You can get unlimited train travel passes from Via as a student.  It looks like it takes about three hours door to door.  That would mean about 30 hours of commuting per week, but most of that time you could spend working, so I feel the only part that would really feel like "commuting" would be the time between my place in Toronto and Union, and from the Kingston train station to school.  The train ride is about 2 hours and I feel it could be comperable to working in a library.

I would love to save $6000+ per year and be able to spend more time  with my girlfriend.  Has anyone attend Queens and have info about when classes start and end (earliest and latest) each day, and approximately how many classes they had that start at 9am or end at 9pm?  Did anyone you know try this, and would you strongly advise against it?

Thanks!

 

I think you’ll shortchange both your relationship and school doing this. Even assuming your travel is reliable (which it may not be, taking into account the weather, etc) you are going to miss out on a lot of things at school, as noted by others. Law school isn’t like undergrad - it is important to make connections with classmates and professors and participate in activities etc not only for academic success, but for job prospects, and for your network post-school. You’re paying a lot of money for those experiences - saving 6K a year should not be the main concern. 

Also, how much time will you really have with your girlfriend? You’ll be getting home late, tired, probably still with work to do, having to get up early to leave for school again. I don’t think this will be quality time with her. Long commutes are very exhausting and frustrating. 

 

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4 hours ago, thesamasaurus said:

I spent a large chuck of my undergrad commuting to school and actually really learned to enjoy the time alone to work without many distractions, but obviously the workload in undergrad is considerably less.   You can get unlimited train travel passes from Via as a student.  It looks like it takes about three hours door to door.  That would mean about 30 hours of commuting per week, but most of that time you could spend working, so I feel the only part that would really feel like "commuting" would be the time between my place in Toronto and Union, and from the Kingston train station to school.  The train ride is about 2 hours and I feel it could be comperable to working in a library.

I would love to save $6000+ per year and be able to spend more time  with my girlfriend.  Has anyone attend Queens and have info about when classes start and end (earliest and latest) each day, and approximately how many classes they had that start at 9am or end at 9pm?  Did anyone you know try this, and would you strongly advise against it?

Thanks!

 

This is a horrible idea. Don’t give it another thought.  

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Folks nag all the time about Osgoode being a commuter school, and it's a 40ish-minute subway ride as the worst case.

I wouldn't do it under any circumstance, but I suggest do it for a week and see it for yourself.

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Posted (edited)

The train station in Kingston is a fair way away from Queens as well..they have buses but at times those buses only come every 30 minutes and take 30 minutes to get to campus from the station. So you would be looking at a 20$ uber/cab ride each way as well. 

Edited by shea

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I went years ago, so not recent impression, but think it a terrible idea, and I like train travel. There were people I knew who had spouses, even children, in Toronto, and they basically left Friday after their last class, went home, spent the whole weekend there, and returned Monday morning. But during the week they were in Kingston and even with focused study (so that weekends were more free) they still had time to socialize with and befriend fellow students, join study groups, etc. all the positives other posters have identified (both academically and in terms of little good quality time with your girlfriend)

Let's put it this way. Will you have 9 AM classes? If yes, probably every or most days? The earliest train arrives in Kingston at 9:07, if it's on time. So you'd be looking at being at least half an hour late to your first class 5 days a week if you take a cab. If not, maybe you're late for or miss your second class also, and that's if the train is on time. Maybe you skip those classes, well, I think that's a terrible idea; and people who skip classes hopefully at least choose to do so after trying going to class, they don't default to that because they have to starting day 1. As for after class, let's say some study groups meet evenings and weekends, oops, wait, not you, you have to leave by 6:30? to get to the station by 7:30 to make the last train to Toronto.

If the schedule were better with earlier and later trains, and you made couch surfing arrangements for when you needed to stay, well, I'd still think it was a terrible idea but at least it would be more feasible.

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Posted (edited)

Yah, this option is a surefire way to make yourself miserable and set yourself up to do poorly in law school. If being in Toronto is extremely important, then I'd say it might be worth working to up your application so that you can attend Oz or UofT.

Edited by spicyfoodftw

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I mean, if you're someone who can do work as efficiently/well on the train as in the library then it's not necessarily impossible. That said, I volunteered once a week in Kingston over the summer while I lived in Toronto. That was only one day but let me tell you, it was DRAINING. I think you could manage it for a month or two, but a whole year, let alone 3, would truly consume your life. Will be too tired to spend any time with your gf at the end of the day.

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Posted (edited)

Terrible idea, not to mention how much VIA gets delayed. You're going to end up spending more time with the VIA train than your girlfriend.

Edited by penguinh
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Also, I'd check the program requirements because I'm pretty sure all Queen's 1L courses are required to be taken in residence.

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I'd recommend taking a cold shower.... for maybe.... 20-30 minutes.  

I genuinely don't think you need community feedback to answer this. 

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For what it's worth, I had a TA at York during undergrad and she commuted from Ottawa on the days she was on campus.  She was gone within a few weeks haha.

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