Life-long friendships, orientation week concerts and breakfast ready-to-go in the cafeteria before class… many Ryerson students have experienced their undergraduate highlights while living in residence! You have likely already heard quite a few stories about “residence life”, but may have questions about what the experience entails. Living in residence as a first-year student is such a life-changing experience. It allows you to gain independence while fully submerging yourself into a brand new academic and social environment. Ryerson’s three residence buildings have a lot to offer, and can provide you with memories, comfortable living and a supportive community. If you have an active Offer of Admission, this blog will be breaking down the top five reasons to get started on your residence application now:
1. Close to classes… and downtown attractions!
Ryerson University is located in the heart of downtown Toronto, which means there is always something going on, and new experiences to take advantage of. From exploring the nearby Ripley’s Aquarium and the Eaton Centre, all the way to using your OneCard meal plan at Ryerson favourites such as Balzacs and the Oakham Cafe, there is always a place to meet up with friends or study. Living on campus allows you to be able to explore the city while pursuing your education. Everything is within walking distance around campus and bike friendly so make sure to enjoy your surroundings and explore!
2. Resources (for practically ANYTHING that you can think of)
Wondering how to get involved with student groups and join an intramural sport? Or perhaps you’re curious about all the great benefits you have coverage for under the Health and Dental Plan? No need to stress — Ryerson has you covered with instant access to all of the answers you’re looking for. There are a variety of resources that are at your disposal when living on campus, such as on-campus representatives and academic services.
Safety is our number one priority, and a very helpful resource that many students use on campus is our Walk Safe Program. This program has no additional cost and allows for students to make a call and have campus security walk you anytime to different spots on campus. (Yes, that’s right! The program is available 24/7, seven days per week!)
3. Get to know our favourite acronyms: AL, RA and LLC!
Ok… so what is this jumble of letters and what does each one even stand for? Let’s jump in! You’ll have these terms memorized in no time when living in one of our spectacular three residence buildings:
Living Learning Communities (LLC): An optional but totally awesome way to live with other students in residence that have similar interests! We have five possibilities: ranging from ‘Healthy Living’ all the way to ‘Entrepreneurship and Innovation’ to bring like-minded individuals together.
Academic Links (AL): Geared to help you succeed in a particular area of study, these upper-year connections are in your same program or faculty! They were once in your shoes and are invaluable for study tips, enrolment questions and even hosting events for meeting others that you share classes with.
Residence Advisors (RA): Famous for their loud cheers and warm smiles during orientation week, these passionate student leaders are located in your community to help throughout the year! Whether you’re simply looking to borrow a vacuum or want to chat about a personal issue that you’re facing, residence advisors often feel like a family member by the end of the year.
No matter which residence building you’re living in, you’ll have the same opportunity to be connected with a lot of these unique support systems in your new home on campus!
Want to know more residence ‘lingo’? Check out this related WhyRyerson article that takes this discussion even further!
4. Take a break from cooking all your meals and enjoy our ready-made options!
Another great thing about residence is that Pitman Hall (PIT), the International Living/Learning Centre (ILC), and Daphne Cockwell Complex (DCC) all include meal plans that you can use at our fantastic dining spaces on campus. Having a meal plan means that you don’t need to worry about making meals. In light of Ryerson’s aim to become a more sustainable campus, there are now eco-friendly containers (and a futuristic machine in the Pitman Lobby that will accept your empty container returns). Want to know one of the best highlights? Pitman’s cafeteria was recently entirely renovated from top to bottom, and the space resembles a remodel that is straight out of a trendy Toronto magazine.
Feeling excited to try out your own cooking skills from time to time? No problem. All three of our residence buildings allow you access to communal kitchens that are equipped with ovens, stovetops and microwaves in case you’re looking to whip something up that is homemade.
5. Work opportunities — you can get paid and gain valuable experience through residence!
Your journey in residence certainly doesn’t need to wrap up and end after your first-year experience! What if I told you that there are countless PAID live-in and live-out employment opportunities? The Housing and Residence Life team is always expanding and looking for fresh talent at the beginning of each school year. Positions aren’t necessarily limited to the residence community either. One of the great things about living on campus is that there are soooooo many opportunities that you can apply for and fit into your daily schedule (i.e. SLC and Library team members!). When using Ryerson resources such as Career Boost, there is a long list of on campus jobs that you can apply for.
Want to get a head start in your first year? We also have opportunities on a regular basis to join our Residence Recruitment Team as a Residence Ambassador. The residence council also seeks out talented individuals to become community presidents and host events throughout the year, such as the spooky Halloween decorating contest.
All in all, living on campus in one of our three residence buildings is such a unique experience for learning and growing as an individual. Regardless of your background, we encourage applications from international students and current Greater Toronto Area residents alike! Everyone has something to gain from being a part of our welcoming community. Downtown Toronto is always full with a multitude of events and places to explore with all of the new friends that you are bound to make!
If any of these highlights resonated with you, then why not join us at one of our upcoming virtual ‘campus tour’ events? A current student will take you behind the scenes of each residence room style, and answer any questions that you might still have. We hope that you’re just as thrilled as we are to welcome you to Ryerson University!