Dalhouse University: student life on campus

An insider's guide to the best place to live, bar for hanging out and more

The 411

Best place for a nap:
The stacks in the Killam library are perfectly silent, with dim lighting and lots of privacy. Bring your sleeping bag.
Best cheap lunch:
The Loaded Ladle in the student union is focused on promoting affordable, diverse, fresh and nutritious food options
Best bar for hanging out:
East Side Mario’s happy hour—they have half-priced appetizers
Best hangover breakfast:
Mary’s Place 2—cozy, rustic and cheap
Best campus giveaway:
The student union provides free menstrual products
Best place to study:
Floor-to-ceiling windows at Halifax Central Library provide great natural light. Only a seven-minute bus ride from campus.
Best weekend activity:
The Emera Oval has skating in the winter, and scooters and roller skating in the summer
Best campus event:
Trivia nights at the Grawood Bar
Best pizza:
Jubilee Junction
Best place to live:
Anywhere around the university. Halifax is on a peninsula so everything is walkable.
Best live music venue:
The Seahorse Tavern has great theme nights
The thing that surprised me most about the school:
Being the only Chinese-identifying person in my first-year residence fam
If I could change one thing about the school:
Bigger lecture-hall desks

PROFILE: Dalhousie University | Halifax, N.S. | Founded 1818

Dalhousie University is located in the Sipekni’katik district, which is on the unceded territory of the Mi’kmaq (Mi’kma’ki).

Mic Mac Mall, across the harbour in Dartmouth, is the second-largest mall in the area. Mic Mac is a misspelling and mispronunciation of Mi’kmaq. This slur is used in street and business names.

The Africville Museum is a lone building off the highway and stands testament to the history of African Nova Scotians, forcibly removed from their community in the 1960s.

These legacies live with the people here. Homes, communities and lands have been taken (or destroyed) without compensation or care.

Mi’kmaw communities continue to carry love and compassion for their identities, cultures and histories—and it would be a privilege for students to learn about the rich cultural relations and histories, both inside and outside the classroom.

Perhaps you’d rather turn a blind eye to the history that defines this university and the city. To that, I present . . . the spiel you’ve been waiting for:

The main Studley campus is a 15-minute walk from one end to the other. Some buildings are connected by underground pathways so you don’t have to step foot outside.

Dal is a cozy student body, smaller classes at 50 to 150 people, and larger classes at 200 to 300. You will probably recognize most people in your program by the end of your degree.

The main quad marks the oldest area of campus; buildings get newer as you continue down the avenue. It makes for a nice walk; “Dal throughout the ages,” if you will.

After Class
Dal has study spots for every mood. There are plenty of group study spaces, as well as individual study spaces of varying noise levels (from coffee-shop chatter to “your breathing noises are causing a ruckus”).

Check out hidden treasures in the Life Sciences Centre, where you’ll find touch tanks full of live starfish, hermit crabs, anemones and other ocean life, as well as the Thomas McCulloch Museum, where you can study amongst bird and fossil displays.

Local Vibe
Halifax is big enough to fulfill all your city life needs, but small enough that you can get to really know the streets. My favorite things are patio beers, the public gardens and shops in the north end. Halifax is on a peninsula, so we are surrounded by ocean. Expect sleepy vibes and salty smells.

More Info
Check out for Mi’kmaw history or for local news and events.

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