Prep for UNICO



The idea for a course to increase academic success, obtain higher grades yet feel less stress, came to me many years ago as school was winding down for our last year of my BSc undergraduate degree. To be honest, I struggled in my first year of university, dropping a difficult course, often feeling behind in my studies and overwhelmed trying balance both my varsity diving commitments and school. When I returned to campus the following fall, I started trying the strategies to be presented in the first Prep4UniCo lecture series. I should introduce myself. I am Dr. Marks, or if you would prefer, feel free to call me Saul. I was born in London, England, in the summer of 1962.

My family immigrated to Canada 3 months later, lived in Edmonton for 7 years until my father was offered his ideal job in Kingston, Ontario. My parents and the family home remained in Kingston for over 30 years, while I moved to Montreal at age 16 to pursue the sport of springboard and tower diving. I subsequently moved to Toronto to continue my education in science and passion for diving, for which I was now on the Senior Nation Team. From Sept 1986 thru Jan 1996, I completed my medical degree at Queens University in Kingston and my residency in Psychiatry at the University of Toronto. I have remained in Toronto working in the hospital setting for 20 years, and for most of that time had my private practice outside the hospital setting. My areas of training were psychotherapy and medical-surgical Psychiatry, but my passion was Sports Psychiatry or Mental Health in the Elite Athlete.

As I have been semi-retired for several years, I have turned my attention to those areas I enjoy and find passion in. Also, I am presently on a hiatus from my clinical duties and not engaged in the practice of medicine, so I found myself with extra time. I had always enjoyed teaching, so I started thinking about what I wanted to teach. This took me on a journey of looking back to where I first found that joy of teaching. I realize now that joy began in the second year of my undergraduate degree, as fellow students and I shared strategies to boost our grades and better manage our time. Now since I needed something to teach and it was past time to share that with a few minor changes in one’s approach to life at University or College, higher grades with more personal time were both easily achievable.