St. Francis Xavier: An insider look at the small-town university

St. Frances Xavier University. Antigonish, NS. No Credit

St. Frances Xavier University. Antigonish, NS.

Kelly Nelson, 23

The first time I heard about St. Francis Xavier University, I remember talking about Antigonish, Nova Scotia, and all I could think about was, “Anti-go-where”? But this university town quickly grew on me. StFX is known for its small community, academics and its residential experience. When I stepped on campus the first day of Orientation Week, my parents and I were immediately drawn in. The school spirit is amazing, and you will be welcomed by students, decked out in pink and crazy outfits, who aren’t afraid to get a little silly. You might look at them for a minute, completely confused, but you’ll see others dancing and cheering and you can’t help but do it, too. Everyone is extremely welcoming and friendly; on my first day at StFX, I didn’t know where my classes were, but an upper-year student made sure I got where I needed to go.

If you’re curious about the academic side of StFX, you’ll be impressed. You are helped from Day 1; here, you’re not just a number. The class sizes are small and you have plenty of opportunities to get to know your professors and ask them questions. There is even the occasional class discussion at the local pub.

One of the many cool opportunities that StFX offers is service learning. This program will not only help you to find volunteer opportunities in the community, but in countries around the world. For more long-term experiences, there are exchange opportunities for students who want to study abroad for a semester. StFX has connections all around the world—that’s the power of an X-ring!

StFX has been my home for the past five years, and I can easily say it has been one of the best experiences in my life. There has never been a dull moment from that first day—going from shy and quiet to dancing and cheering in minutes—through to today, as I take my second degree and work toward my future career. I have met some of my best friends here and made memories to last a lifetime. You might ask why you should consider coming to StFX. Come experience it and find out!

There are so many things to get involved in. The student leaders in residence plan house events so you can meet your neighbours: intramurals, movies, socials, dinners, or any suggestions you might bring to the table. They stop at nothing to make sure you have the best experience possible. You can join societies, clubs, committees, volunteer in the community, get active (at the gym, arena, basketball courts, squash courts), or go out and support your X-men and women’s teams. There are plenty of opportunities to get involved; all you have to do is ask!

City Vibe
The town of Antigonish is absolutely beautiful throughout the year. If you like an atmosphere where you can walk from one end of town to the other in about 15 minutes, this place is for you. The town has great places to escape the busy university life, be it food locations, waterfront walks at the Antigonish Landing, tubing down the river (when it’s warm out), or being 10 minutes away from local beaches.

The Skinny and