Existing on Campus Vol.2

It’s 2 a.m. and your exam is at 8:30 a.m., yet you still want to stay up at least half an hour more to study before you try to get some rest. Most of us have all been in a similar situation. Whether we’ve been studying all week or just the night before, we study to do the best we can (or at least just pass). The temptation of binge-watching episodes on Netflix or going to bed may be on our minds, but we choose not to because of something more powerful – the reason behind our motivation to study. The Lance asked students on campus what or who is their motivation to work hard and study long hours into the night (despite the eye bags and mental exhaustion).


“Existing on Campus” is an 8 part photography series highlighting the different cohorts of students attending the University of Windsor. This series aims to create a certain sense of human acknowledgement, realizing that every passerby on this campus is living a life as vivid and complex as your own.

CHAUDRY HAMZA

Program: 2nd Year Mechanical Engineering

Hamza and his friend, Yusuf Aktas, were frantically studying for their Dynamics exam before I approached them to ask if they had a few minutes to be disturbed for a few photos and an interview. They both paused for a second before agreeing that they could spare a few minutes.

Hamza is a transfer student from the University of Manitoba but is originally from Pakistan. Hamza is not receiving funding from OSAP.

“The government doesn’t pay for me to be here, my family pays a lot for me to be here. I work hard because of my family. Doing well is what I can give them in return.”

The night before Hamza had slept at 5 a.m. and was on campus in the morning for 10:30 a.m.

“Every time I talk to my parents they tell me, ‘Don’t care about the expenses, just focus on what you wanna be. We’ll be happy to see you in a better place.’ When they say that it means everything to me.”

REEM ZARIF

Program: 2nd Year Business

Reem loves that her program brings out both the business and social world combined. She finds that the program helps students develop their communication skills.

Reem studies hard because she hopes to make an impact in someone’s life the way her father did for her. “ My dad gave me a lot of opportunities and I would hate to see that go to waste or take that for granted. So, changing someone’s life like how he changed mine is my goal.”

“One day I want everyone to be like, “Damn who is that?” I want to show girls that it’s already been done and that they have a role model to look up to.”

“One word I would use to describe my future is ‘inspiring’.

JASON SOLOMON

Program: 2nd Year Criminology and Psychology

The two things that motivate Jason is Kobe Bryant and the show Suits. When he thinks of a player who has perseverance, good work ethic and dedication, he thinks of Kobe Bryant.

“When people don’t think I can do something, I just remember Kobe Bryant. When he first went to the league, people didn’t think he was going to amount to anything. For me, when I went to high school, people thought, ‘this is just another black kid from the ghetto that’s gonna disobey the rules.’ But just like Kobe Bryant excelling over the years, my grades also improved each year.”

Blocking out the negative noise and focusing on the one thing that motivates you can make a great difference.

“Kobe won the championship when people didn’t believe in him. I got into university when people didn’t believe in me. I’m proud of myself.”

Binge watching episodes on Netflix may not be a bad thing if it’s also a motivation for doing well in school. Jason adores the show Suits as it helps him picture who he wants to be in the future.

“In the show, Mike and Harvey know their craft really well. I look at the syllabus to know what chapters I should read before class so I am prepared. When the professor is giving a lecture on the subject, I already know what he’s talking about.”

“When something happens unexpectedly in the show, Mike and Harvey are on their feet and they know how to handle the situation. I want to be just like that.”

MICHELLE ROPPEL

Program: 3rd Year Nursing

Many nurses drop out after their second year because they can’t take the pressure or they don’t have the passion for it, but Michelle works hard to be the best nurse she can.

“I study hard for myself. I want to ensure I know what I’m doing when I’m in the job and I’m helping my patients.”

Like most of us, Michelle’s inspiration for studying is “getting good grades and graduating.”

She knows that no one but herself can help her get there. When she thinks of her future, she sees herself being a nurse.

“When I graduate I’ll be relieved, stress-free and just happy.”

ANJEL ALIAS

Program: 4th Year Human Kinetics

“My parents tell me, ‘Just work hard as much as you can. Sometimes things don’t go as planned like you don’t get the mark that you want, but that doesn’t mean you should give up. A mark doesn’t shape who you are or your character.’”

Anjel's parents inspired him to work hard because they’ve provided him with everything that he needs. His goal is to get into a career in the medical field, but his main goal is to get into physiotherapy. He thinks Human Kinetics is great as it teaches him about the sports side, the health side, and society at the same time. 

"As I grow older I want to ensure that I'm good with people, always helpful and that I remain in contact with as many people as possible. I also want to try to work hard as much as I can."

"I've grown up watching my parents work very hard for their future and what they do for each other keeps me motivated. I just stay positive as well as I can."

Anjel had a message for his parents. "Thank you for the life you've given me. Thank you for teaching me all the lessons that got me here where I am."

MARK MACPHEARSON

Program: 3rd Year Business

The library isn’t the only place where students go to study. Mark was in a classroom by himself in Dillion Hall.

“I usually study in Dillion with a couple of friends. I find that no one is in Dillion so it’s great because there is a whiteboard and a projector. This is the place to be.”

Mark also mentioned that he and his friends know of another building which is empty and perfect to study in but wouldn’t disclose the name.

“We come to Dillion and one other building which has one room that no one is in.”

From biology to business, Mark’s parents have stuck by his side, supporting him on his journey to find what he has a passion for.

“I want to get my education to start making money for myself and paying my parents back.”

“My parents always tell me to keep going and keep focused. If I get a bad mark they’ll be hard on me for a little bit, but then “they’ll say you’ll get it next time’”.

“My future will be extremely bright. I need sunglasses half the time, it’s so bright.”

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