Algoma University: Student life on campus

Where to find the best cheap lunch, the best and worst places to study and more

Algoma University

Best place for a nap: T-Bird Lounge
Best cheap lunch: Stackburger
Best hangover breakfast: Anything from the Breakfast Pig
Favourite campus food: Poutine from Morningstar
Favourite watering hole: Top Hat
Perks of living in this town: Small community, historical landmarks
Where to live: Queen Street East, Wellington Street East
Best place to study: Silent (second) floor of the library
Worst place to study: The Speakeasy
Coolest electives: Film (English); Creative Writing (English)
Most notorious bus route: Cedar Heights
Best campus events: Halloween Pub Night
Best giveaway: Free food and stress packages
School motto: ‘Small university, big education’
Best live music venue: The Canadian Motor Hotel

PROFILE: Algoma University | Sault Ste. Marie, Ont. | Founded 1964

University Insider: Ashton Carter, 19, English Literature

Imagine that you have just received a letter in the mail, the crisp envelope sitting in your hand. You pull away the flap and reach inside to find the letter, addressed to you personally. They want you.

Your first day on campus is an anxious one. A thick forest borders the school grounds. The main building looms before you, cathedral-like and ancient. You walk through the front doors into a hallway and see old pictures of First Nations children; you look into their eyes and glimpse history. This place is a piece of that history. You ascend the stairs to your left.

The fourth floor stretches out from the stairwell and you take a chance. You turn into the office of your academic adviser and introduce yourself. The man gives you a warm smile and looks gently into your eyes. He stands and extends his hand.

“Welcome to Algoma University.”

The prospect of post-secondary education is daunting for many students. The place where rules are different, where adulthood takes shape and where responsibility and ownership are given with great expectations can be summed up in a short word: scary. Despite this, Algoma University is adept at making its students feel at home. The small campus and friendly faculty are an excellent combination that works well at integrating first-year students into post-secondary academic life and preparing them for the working world.

You will become familiar with campus landmarks including Shingwauk Hall, the Essar Convergence Centre, the George Leach Centre, the Arthur A. Wishart Library and three residence areas. The campus itself is a landmark, the former home of the Shingwauk and Wawanosh Indian Residential schools; all that remains is Shingwauk Hall, the Bishop Fauquier Memorial Chapel, and a small cemetery near the chapel. Today the university is a partner in the Shingwauk Residential Schools Centre, which collects, preserves, displays and teaches the history and legacy of the residential school system. This is an essential part of what makes Algoma a unique learning environment
Classroom size for first-year students is capped at 75, which means no student is adrift in a sea of faces, identified only by a number. The professors are there to assist you and are only a holler or email away.

The campus is vibrant and alive with extracurricular events and activities. Get in touch with your creative flow and read some poetry, sing a song or play an instrument at open-mic nights. Get into a groove and karaoke to your heart’s content in the Speakeasy on select evenings. Pubs and party nights are often held for those who seek a little social mingling—dance the night away with some friends!

Local Vibe
Sault Ste. Marie—the “Soo”—is rich in history and art. Take a tour of the Ermatinger Old Stone House to learn about the area’s fur-trading heritage, visit the Art Gallery of Algoma to ponder beauty or find a seat at Café Natura to hear some of the local tunes.

The Skinny
The university’s website,, has plenty of useful information, including dates, times and details of courses and campus events.