Your Guide to Welcome Day

So August is winding down and your countdown has almost reached 0. As you finish your preparations for travelling to StFX, you may be trying to imagine what Saturday, September 2nd will look like. If you have an older sibling who went to StFX, you may have already experienced part of Welcome Day already. You would know how energetic campus is on this day, especially due to the presence of O-Crew members. For those of you who aren’t sure what to expect, here is a rundown of your first day as new students at StFX.

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7:30 am: Doors open at the Keating Centre

Your first stop of the day will be at the Keating Centre (KMC), where you will be greeted outside by the wonderful and energetic Orientation Crew. Inside the Keating Centre, there will be a number of stations for you to visit. You will receive your StFX student ID, and will be able to meet with university departments such as the Residence Services office and the Financial Services office. You will also have the opportunity to shake hands with the President of StFX, Kent MacDonald!

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Once you have made your way through the main arena, you will head to the AUX rink, where there will be a showcase of campus services. Here, you will pick up your frosh kit & your Orientation Week shirt. There is also a photo booth where parents and students can get their picture taken.

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9 am: Residence opens for new arrivals

After you are finished at the Keating Centre, you can head to your residence building to begin moving into your residence room. Before you start moving your belongings, you will check in with Residence Life to gain access to your room and receive your residence shirt. A Community Advisor will escort you to your room, and you will be given a room checklist and residence contract.

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Now that you’ve been formally checked into residence, you can begin moving your belongings into your new room. One thing you should take into consideration is parking and traffic in and out of the residence building. Depending on which residence you are in, there will likely be temporary parking in place to manage vehicle flow. An example of temporary parking is outside of Bishops Hall. You will be permitted to park in a temporary parking zone for a certain amount of time in order to allow others to be able to park near the building. Another thing to consider is that elevators will be operated almost nonstop from 9am to 2pm. If you are carrying heavy items, prepare to wait a few minutes for an elevator. Take the stairs as much as possible when moving in, it will save you time.

Once you are situated in residence, put on your house shirt and gather with other first year students in residence for a welcome and a short introduction of residence leaders. You will meet the Community Advisors in residence, as well as your House President & Vice President. You’re now ready to attend the first event of Welcome Day with your residence house.

2 pm: President’s Welcome

You and your residence house will head over to the Keating Centre main arena for the President’s Welcome. At this event, StFX President Kent MacDonald will address the audience of new students and their parents.

3:30 pm: Community meeting

Following the President’s Welcome, you will return to residence for the first formal community meeting of the day. The meeting will be hosted by community advisors and will allow residents to meet each other in small groups. The purpose of this meeting is to get to know your residence and your neighbours in a small community setting. Residents will also be given campus tours to familiarize themselves with their new surroundings.

5:30 pm: BBQ/Guinness World Record

Following the first meeting period, there will be a BBQ for all new students taking place on the lawn outside of Bishops Hall. There will also be a fun event where students will attempt to set the Guinness World Record for the largest game of freeze tag.

7:30 pm: Community meeting

After the BBQ and freeze tag, students will return to residence for another community meeting. The purpose of this meeting is to expand on the first meeting and introduce residence topics for all residents in the building.

9 pm: Carnival

Welcome Day will come to an end at the Oland Stadium, where there will be a carnival from 9pm to 12am. The football field will be full of inflatable games, interactive lights, and dance music. There will be a variety of activities to suit many different tastes, so whether you want to actively participate in inflatable sports or relax on the LED furniture and in the inflatable lounges, you won’t want to miss this exciting ending to a great first day at StFX!

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Campus Hacks

Less than 2 weeks until we see all your lovely faces on campus!!! 

With that being said, we thought that it would be appropriate to give you guys the inside scoop on StFX before you even set foot on campus. There are many tips and tricks around campus, and instead of you having to figure it out the hard way like we did, here is a list of everything that two fourth years could come up with.

Eating Options

Let’s start it off with one of the most important hack—FOOD. Being a small campus, you might think that the options are limited, but keep reading this post and you’ll realize that there are many ways to bypass this and endless eating opportunities.

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First, we’ll talk about Meal Hall. There is the classics section which has your traditional entrées and sides, with a vegetarian/vegan option. The classics station rotates through a bunch of options, but on some days, the menu might not be your cup of tea, so they provide many other stations where you can get creative with what you make. There is a salad and sandwich bar, a personal pizza station, a grill station which serves fries, burgers and sandwiches, and the newest addition to Morrison, the My Kitchen station. This is where you can cook eggs, whip up a stir fry, make a smoothie, and so much more!! Also, there is UNLIMITED CHOCOLATE MILK, available everyday. There is also a Take 3 option, which you can take three items to go, if you are on the run. This is convenient during exam periods. These things are what you see at first glance but there is much more that you can make under the surface, and here are some ideas.

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  • Make a quesadilla and ask to put it in the pizza oven
  • Go to the salad bar and grab other veggies that you would want in your stir fry (grab tofu as a vegetarian option for your stir fry)
  • Put garlic butter and cheese on a personal pizza and you have yourself some garlic fingers
  • Take the same flatbread and put normal butter and cinnamon and sugar on it… Boom.. your very own Beavertail. Perfect dessert.Another trick with meal hall is to make sure you go at the right time. There is a rush between 5pm and 6pm, so if it is possible, go before or after this hour. Besides Morrison, there are plenty of places to eat on campus, that also has hacks as well.

    The Student Union Building has so many eating options in the Bloomfield Café. You can get “Oodles”- an Asian style stir fry dish that you choose what protein and vegetables you want, along with the sauce and if you want rice or noodles. There is also a grill for breakfast sandwiches that ends at around 11am, and then burgers and curly fries and such for lunch. Last but CERTAINLY not least there’s the burrito and Rita Wrap station. These are a high demand for the campus. A recent addition to the Bloomfield Café is the One Swipe option; instead of using DCB, you can use a meal plan swipe to pay for a Rita Wrap and a soup, or a hamburger and fries from the grill. This option is available Monday to Friday from 11:30am to 1:30pm, which is a popular choice for students with a meal plan. Also in the Café, is another place where you can get a Take 3 which also counts as a meal swipe! They also have many classic cafés baked goods and coffees.

     

    The Keating Centre also has a nice café, and they serve all-day breakfast. They also serve Rita Wraps and grilled cheese. Last but not least there’s Mini Moe’s, which is another good option for coffee and baked goods, they also serve sandwiches are opened late until 10pm. They have many different hidden menu items that you can get, including a steamed dark chocolate almond milk and a London Fog (tea latte). Also, if you are a continuous coffee drinker, they offer stamps where you can get free coffee after so many bought. You can also receive a discount on your coffee if you bring a reusable mug.

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    Study Spaces 

    There are the obvious spaces in which every campus has to study, the Library, the Cafes, etc. but there are way more hidden spots that took us a long time to find. At StFX, the popular spots are as followed:

     

     

    • The “Harry Potter Room”, also known as the Hall of the Clans (3rd floor library)
    • Comfy chairs (1st floor library)
    • 2nd floor cubbies above computer lab (best for studying alone)
    • 3rd floor of the SUB
    • 4th floor breakout rooms in Schwartz
    • PSC pods

     

     

    The hidden spots (which we are hesitant to give you all as we like to study in these places) are

    • Basement Schwartz—besides the two main pods, there are hidden tables that are by the locker room that are always a quiet place to study.
    • 4th floor Schwartz computer labs (to the left of the stairs)
    • Coady Library and study rooms—located in the east building

    (3rd floor lib)

    • Residence Lounge
    • Tim Hortons—opened 24 hours for a late night study sesh
    • Tall & Small—if you can find a table
    • Public Library on main street

 

Your Guide to Academic Buildings

We are now only 15 days away from Welcome Day! 

To help you learn a bit more about where your classes will be held, we’ve compiled a list of the academic buildings on campus. While several of the buildings are program specific, many buildings host courses from a variety of departments. These buildings are home to faculty, academic and administrative staff. Students can find common areas and private study spaces in many of these buildings, especially those that are recent additions to campus. You can determine which buildings your courses will be in by looking at the rooms listed on your course schedule.

Schwartz School of Business (SCHW)

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“Schwartz”, as it is referred to on campus, is located on Martha Drive and consists of the Schwartz School of Business and the Frank McKenna Centre for Leadership. Situated near Xavier Hall, the Angus L. MacDonald Library and St. Ninian Cathedral, Schwartz is one of the liveliest areas on Lower Campus. Schwartz is home to the Department of Business, and while it is known mostly as an academic building for business students, courses from a diverse range of departments are taught in its classrooms, computer labs, and the beautiful Schwartz Auditorium on first floor.

Schwartz is also an important area for university functions that include keynote speakers, major announcements, and conferences. In addition to its excellent lecture rooms, Schwartz also has great study spaces on second floor and fourth floor, where there are private study rooms and a study lounge. Schwartz is also home to the Student Career Centre, which provides help for students looking for job or career opportunities, as well as the Co-op Education Program.

Physical Sciences Centre (PS)

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Known as the PSC, the Physical Sciences Centre is located between the Bauer Theatre and the Safety and Security office on Lower Campus. Like Schwartz, the PSC is a recent addition to campus, and it is full of natural lighting and open spaces. The PSC is home to the Department of Chemistry, the Department of Physics, the Department of Engineering, and the Department of Earth Sciences, although there are other courses that are held in the building. If you are in chemistry, physics, or engineering, you are sure to spend many hours in the PSC classrooms and labs.

The PSC is also home to some of the most sought after study spaces on campus: the pods. Like the private rooms in Schwartz, these pods are in high demand, and you’ll have to set an early alarm if you want to study in a pod during exams.

Rankin School of Nursing (MSB)

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Located on the south side of the Mount Saint Bernard complex, the Rankin School of Nursing is a newly renovated academic facility that includes a state-of-the-art nursing simulation learning centre. If you’re in the nursing program, this building will become your second home.

J. Bruce Brown Hall (BB)

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Referred to as “JBB”, the J. Bruce Brown Hall faces Notre Dame Avenue and it is situated next to Lane Hall. JBB is home to the Department of Biology, the Department of Human Nutrition, the Department of Anthropology, and the Aquatic Resources Program. In addition to classrooms and faculty offices, there are numerous labs in JBB, making this building a hub for university research involving both student and faculty researchers.

Nicholson Tower (NH)

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Nicholson Tower is the tallest building on the StFX campus, and it is a busy spot for many of the academic staff at StFX. Students can find helpful services such as Academic Advising on the 2nd floor and the Financial Aid Office on 3rd floor, while students interested in spending a semester abroad can learn more at the International Exchange Office on 2nd floor. There are many different departments found in the tower, including the Department of Religious Studies on 4th floor, Department of Economics on 5th floor, Department of English on 6th floor, Department of Political Science and Department of Philosophy on 7th floor, as well as the Department of History.

Immaculata Hall (IM)

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Immaculata Hall is part of Mount Saint Bernard, and is located on the northern edge of Upper Campus. Immaculata is home to the Department of Modern Languages. It is also home to the Art Department, where students can demonstrate their creative side in the studio through mediums such as painting, textiles, and sculpting. Students interested in travelling abroad to participate in a community development project can visit the Service Learning office on 2nd floor.

Gilmora Hall (GM)

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Gilmora Hall is home to the Music Department, where you can find practice rooms with pianos and instruments, perfect for any student in the Jazz program. Gilmora is located next to the main entrance of Mount Saint Bernard, and it faces Notre Dame Avenue. It will host some of the temporary classrooms that will be used while construction of the Mulroney Institute takes place.

Annex (AX)

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The Annex is situated between the Bloomfield Centre (SUB) and Nicholson Tower. Located on a hill, it overlooks a busy area in the heart of campus. It is home to the Department of Mathematics, Statistics & Computer Science, the Department of Psychology, and the Department of Sociology. While the building houses mostly faculty offices, students in these programs become familiar with the Annex. Known for its vintage look and feel, those who work there have a sense of pride for their home on campus.

Oland Centre (OC)

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The Oland Centre is located on Convocation Boulevard, and it is one of the primary athletics facilities on campus. While it is known for being a hub for varsity sports, intramurals, and StFX recreation, it is also the home of the Department of Human Kinetics. In addition to a newly renovated main gym, an auxiliary gym, and facilities for varsity athletes, the OC also has four racquetball courts, two squash courts, a varsity weight room, an athletic therapy room, a computer lab, two Human Kinetics labs, a combat room, team dressing rooms, three classrooms, and the Kehoe conference meeting room.

Charles V. Keating Centre (KC)

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The Keating Centre is home to the X-Men and X-Women hockey teams. It contains a main ice surface and an auxiliary arena, the KMC Cafe, Conference Services, and hospitality facilities. The conference rooms on the second floor of the Keating Centre will be used as temporary classrooms during the construction of the Mulroney Institute.

Coady International Institute (CO)

 

Located on the edge of Upper Campus, the Coady Institute houses a centre for community development and leadership. The Coady attracts individuals from around the world to participate in world-class programs that help them create change in their home communities. The Coady will be home to several temporary classrooms during the construction of the Mulroney Institute.

St. Ninian Place (SNP)

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St. Ninian Place is a facility that operates as part of the St. Ninian Cathedral. It includes four meeting rooms and a large hall that is used for functions such as community events and private receptions. St. Ninian Place will be used for several temporary classrooms during the construction of the Mulroney Institute.

 

Shop ‘Til You Drop at the StFX Campus Store

The countdown to Welcome Day is now at 24 days! So exciting!!!

Now that you’ve had a chance to learn more about the incredible residence experience on campus, we figured we’d introduce you to one of the most important places that you will visit in your first few days of university: the StFX Campus Store aka the bookstore! Located on the first floor of the Student Union Building (Bloomfield Centre), the Campus Store sells all the textbooks, clothing, StFX-themed items and school supplies available at StFX. The store is also home to the recently opened X-Ring Store, where students eligible to receive their X-Ring can browse, try on, and order their X-Ring.

The busiest times of the year for the Campus Store are the first two weeks in September and January, as students are buying textbooks for the start of the semester. The store extends its hours during these times to accommodate the increased traffic. There is typically a line that extends out of the store, especially in the morning and afternoon, so make sure to plan to wait an extra ten minutes or so to enter the store.

The Campus Store hours are: Monday to Friday from 9am to 4pm and Saturday from 10am to 4pm. There are extended hours during the academic year, as the store is open until 8pm on Thursdays.  

The employees at the Campus Store are super friendly and helpful, and they make your book-buying experience simple. If you log in to your mesAMIS account (accessed by using your StFX PIN and password), you can view your list of textbooks under the “My Books” heading. You can show this list to a Campus Store employee and they will lead you to the textbooks on the list. You may not need the assistance of an employee when looking for a textbook, as the shelves are organized according to degree, such as Business, Nursing, Human Kinetics, Psychology, etc.

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When you are buying your textbooks, make sure that you are aware of the Campus Store’s Textbook Returns Policy. This is important for new textbooks, especially ones that are wrapped in plastic, but it applies for used textbooks as well. While the Campus Store is a place for students to buy textbooks, it is also a place where students can sell textbooks they are no longer using. At the end of the semester, the store offers a Textbook Buyback, where you can go to the Campus Store and exchange your textbooks for some spending money.

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The Campus Store is also the go-to place for purchasing StFX clothing and gifts. There are lots of options for t-shirts, hats, and athletic wear. You can also choose from the wide selection of sweater designs, including sweaters that include your program. Full of house spirit? The Campus Store has scarves for each house, complete with house colours.

Another item that you can find at the store is StFX-themed bedding. The bed in a bag set comes in twin, double, and queen sizes, so the bedding is perfect for all bed sizes in residence. Included in the set is a sheet set, a pillow and pillowcase, and a navy comforter with StFX embroidered on the front. You can find this item in the Campus Store and on the Campus Store website in twin and double sizes. The twin bedding set costs $72.25, the double set costs $84.25, and the queen duvet set includes a white duvet cover with StFX embroidered on the front and costs $145. You can find the bedding sets in store and on the Campus Store website.

Whether you’re getting ready for a new semester of classes, preparing for Homecoming, buying gifts for family members, or visiting StFX on a campus tour, the Campus Store will meet your needs and provide great customer service.

Your New Home: Riley and O’Regan Hall

Guess what everyoneeeee…. 29 days until Orientation week!!!!

Last but certainly not least on the list for residences is our newest addition to StFX, Riley Hall and O’Regan Hall, aka the new res’s. Although they are on opposite sides of the rink for the Bathtub Hockey Cup (Riley vs. O’Regan), they share a very positive bond throughout the year. One of the coolest things about these residences is that they write messages on their big windows that overlook the front lawn, often displaying a message to their neighbour. As the two nicest residences on campus which opened in 2013, they both include a cardio room, a movie theatre, and a huge lounge where a lot of house events take place. These co-ed residences include a full washroom including a bathtub (hence the hockey cup name), a double sized bed, a flat screen TV, a mini fridge and a microwave. Even with all of those amenities, you will never be short of floor space. These huge rooms are available in either a double or a single room. Riley and O’Regan are located on upper campus, and there is a nearby path that leads you to places such as the Antigonish Mall and Sobeys. So if this is your room assignment, get ready for a year of luxury that is full of fun in a room that is nicer than most hotels.

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Riley Royals

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Riley hall also known as the “Castle” is much like a real castle, full of magic, and Royals running throughout. Unarguably one of the most beautiful buildings on campus, Riley Hall is across from its twin O’Regan Hall. Now picture it, the nicest residence on campus, the full atmosphere and all but there is one more thing you may need. You’re emerging from your luxurious bath after a long day of classes and something is missing…… a fluffy bath robe may do the trick. Lucky for you every year Riley Royals get custom robes fit for a King or Queen. Riley also has a huge Thanksgiving celebration every year. The purpose is for those who live far from home and are away from their first family can be with their Royal family. This takes places in the huge lounge that includes a big kitchen. The Riley team is counting down the days until they come together as the Royal family for the 2017-2018 year. For more information and to follow the Royals around this upcoming year find them on Instagram @rileyroyals, or join the Facebook group: Riley Hall 2017-2018

O’Regan Leopards

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Leopards, welcome to the jungle also known as O’Regan Hall. Rated the nicest residence in Canada in 2015 by Huffington Post, O’Regan offers the perfect balance of comfort and functionality, while maintaining a positive social atmosphere. Living in a house with little frosh gives upper year students a better chance to connect with old friends and to create so many new friendships throughout the year. Home to over 150 students there is always something going on in O’Regan. Whether it’s watching a movie in the Movie Room, working out in the gym, or cooking up a meal in one of the kitchens, O’Regan is fully equipped for all of your needs. A two second walk to the Sub and the Oland Center, you’re never far from any of the action on campus! After receiving your O’Regan Visor at the Visor Ceremony, you’re finally a Leopard and ready to take on all things O’Regan throughout the year. Like Christmas in O’Regan, an annually charity event, with treats, goodies and of course a visit by Santa himself! If this is your residence, join in on the fun by becoming a member of the O’Regan Facebook group: O’Regan 2017-2018

Key Figures in Residence

Hall Director: The Hall Director position is filled by an upper year student who works with Residence Life to provide leadership to students in residence. The HDs work with Residence Life Coordinators to oversee the Residence Life teams in each residence building. Through programming, supporting peers, and promoting the Community Code, Hall Directors play an important role in creating a positive living experience within the residence community.

This year’s HD for Riley Hall is Riley MacEachern !

This year’s HD for O’Regan Hall is Keegan Fitzgibbons!

Community Advisors: CAs, formerly known as Resident Assistants, live and work in all residences at StFX. With training provided by Residence Life, CAs are able to ensure that there is a safe and positive environment for all residents in the building. With daily interactions and availability, CAs provide residents with resources, information and assistance to ensure personal well-being in residence.

House President: The House President of each residence is a second year returning student. Working under the VP Residence Affairs in the Students’ Union, the House President provides leadership to residents by planning events, organizing initiatives such as fundraising, promoting house spirit, and holding house meetings for all residents.

This year’s HP for Riley Hall is Alex MacDonald!

This year’s HP for O’Regan Hall is Sadie Laurin!

Vice President: The House Vice President assists the House President as house leaders, providing a positive experience in residence through house events, house spirit, and other ways of connecting with residents. The House President and Vice President work frequently on campus initiatives with other residence leaders and Students’ Union figures.

This year’s VP for Riley Hall is Matthew Trnkus!

This year’s VP for O’Regan Hall is Owen Williams!

House Council: Students living in each residence have the opportunity to become a member on their residence’s house council. As a house council rep, residents will get to become more involved in their house’s affairs and make decisions in their area of focus. House council positions include activities rep, finance rep, health and wellness rep, communications rep, charity rep, equity and sustainability rep, and house spirit rep.