Best place for a nap:
The couches in the library are probably your best bet
Best cheap lunch:
Tasty Tom’s has great cheap breakfast and lunch
Best hangover breakfast:
I love Hap’s on Stony Plain Road for their Hunger Buster breakfast. Eggs, bacon, hash browns, pancakes—everything you need to recuperate after a long night.
Favourite campus food:
BLT sandwich from the cafeteria
Best bar for hanging out:
Blues on Whyte is great for live music, Black Dog has fun events like comedy open mics and rap battles, 1st RND is great for sports and food, and Ed’s Bowling and the Rec Room in the mall have great deals on drinks, pool and bowling every Tuesday.
Best place to study:
Upper floor of Concordia’s library is very quiet and has lots of places to study
Free pancakes on St. Paddy’s Day
Best place for a fancy meal:
Meat on Whyte Avenue is delicious
Best campus event:
Concordia has an event where they bring in dogs and cats from the animal shelter
Best live music venue:
The Starlite Room
Best place to live:
I’ve never lived on campus, but the dwellings are small and you pay for food from the cafeteria. You will probably be better off finding a small apartment somewhere within a short drive or bus ride.
If I could change one thing about the school:
It’d be nice if the clubs and events were better advertised
Concordia is one of the smaller universities in Edmonton, but that’s partly what makes it a great learning environment. Rather than classes with hundreds of students packed into an auditorium, freshmen at Concordia get a much smaller and more intimate experience. Every one of my professors made an effort to learn everybody’s name in their class. They absolutely love it when students participate and are readily available to offer help outside the classroom. The enthusiastic professors create an environment where students are less likely to feel shy about participating. As an English major with a minor in philosophy, my favourite way to learn is through discussion. The small class sizes also make it much easier to make friends, as you are more likely to be in a class with students you’ve already met.
Although Concordia isn’t located near any of the busy parts of the city like downtown or Whyte Avenue, it is surrounded by a beautiful ravine with an off-leash park running through it. Taking a refreshing walk through the woods is a great way to relax in the warmer months. If the day isn’t too windy, there are also a few picnic tables under the shade of a massive oak tree that provide a calming place to crack open your books and study in the warm summer air. A short walk from the campus you will find a bench with a superb view of the downtown Edmonton skyline. This is my favourite place to read in the spring and summer.
Concordia makes up for its small size with enthusiasm. Although they may be a bit smaller than those at MacEwan University and U of A, the clubs at Concordia are thriving nevertheless. If you are interested in politics, we have an award-winning Model UN club. The last overseas conference our club attended was in China (I had the pleasure of representing Peru in the Security Council), and the next will be in Germany. We also have all kinds of sports teams such as basketball, curling, volleyball and badminton. Concordia has movie nights every month, so you can grab some friends and popcorn and enjoy a good flick. Additionally, we have a games night once a month where you can play board games or video games in Tegler Student Centre.
Edmonton is cold—very cold. But it is a great city. The people are kind and welcoming, and we have a wonderful local art scene. If you don’t mind the weather, Edmonton is also a great place for winter sports. Downtown on Victoria Trail, we have a massive free skating rink with trails that branch off into areas with picnic tables. Whyte Avenue is the place to go if you’d like to grab a few beers, play some pool, see some live music, or just hang out and chat with a few friends. We also have the famous Edmonton Fringe Festival every year, so if you’d like to see some fantastic plays or watch some street performers balance things on their chins, look no further.
Concordia’s Facebook page is the best place to keep up to date on school events, and the school’s weekly newsletter can also be useful for new students.