By Sarah Patriarca
Ryerson University’s campus is realistically only one street and compared to other schools, our campus can come across as small with barely anything in it. I have to admit the first time I came to campus for an open house, I walked through Gould Street and thought “Is that it?” But after spending three years on the now-familiar street, there are many hidden nooks to our small campus. So fear not, first years, this is the ultimate guide on how to navigate and get the best experience at Ryerson University!
1. Hang out in the SLC
For most students, the main place to hang out or meet up with friends is the Student Learning Centre (SLC). The SLC’s many floors give students access to many different things. The first floor, the Beach floor (sixth) and the Sky floor (eighth) are where the majority of people go to chill, but I wouldn’t suggest studying or doing homework there since these floors can get very loud and busy. The best floors for quiet work would be the seventh floor, which is considered the Quiet Zone, and the fifth floor. These floors also give students access to many smaller rooms which you can book to do group work or have more silence to do some readings! Personally, I find that the SLC is a little too busy and loud to fully sit down and study and that’s why I take advantage of our library, which students can get to through the SLC’s second floor!
2. Take a nature walk through Kerr Hall Quad
Before I started university, people warned me about how hard it would be to navigate Kerr Hall. They said every floor looked the same and that it was hard to get your bearings.
After having many classes there, I agree that everything does look the same but it is pretty easy to navigate through the building. After all, there are signs everywhere. Also, it’s pretty easy to figure out where you are going when the building is divided up by direction. If you know you’re in the North, South, East or West wings, Kerr Hall should be the easiest building to navigate through. Kerr Hall is also the centre of campus, marking the halfway point of Gould Street, so if you know where Kerr Hall is, it will be easier to find your other classes and buildings.
People can take advantage of the quad in the middle of the building, however it is often blocked off. I know I’m guilty of using the passageway through the SLC and the Library building to get through to Kerr Hall, especially on those tough winter days. The passageway is definitely more direct but I highly suggest walking through the quad on a nice day to enjoy the nature and the fresh air. It’s remarkable how peaceful it can be.
3. Grab a bite to eat nearby
While there are many places to eat on Ryerson campus, some of the food locations can be quite expensive compared to what you might find off campus. Balzacs Coffee Roasters right in front of Kerr Hall, Starbucks in the SLC and the Service Hub cafeteria are all great places, but they’re not easy on your wallet. Some better places to eat when you’re hungry on a budget are the Yonge Street Warehouse, where everything is five dollars, or Metro, where you can get a slice of pizza or other hot food for cheap. Metro offers students a discount every Wednesday, just flash your student ID. It’s right by the engineering building at the end of Gould Street, an easy location if you have a class there or the Rogers Communications Centre.
4. Take the short cut from Dundas Station
I’ll admit, this seems a little self-explanatory. If you take the subway to school, you’d typically exit from the Eaton Centre or Dundas Square and just follow Yonge Street all the way down to Gould Street. However, there’s an even easier way to go, especially when Yonge Street is crowded with people rushing to work and students rushing to class. Exit from the 10 Dundas East exit, make a left and go on to Victoria Street. From there, go straight until you make it to Gould Street! There are less people on this route and it’s usually faster to get to class, especially when you are in a bind for time.
Following these tips and tricks will help you navigate yourself through Ryerson’s campus. First years, don’t worry and focus on having the best experience possible! These next four years will fly by in a blink of an eye.