MacEwan University: Student life on campus
An insider’s guide to the best place to live, campus food and more
Mya Colwell, 20: Communication studies
Why did you choose MacEwan?
While MacEwan students might endure a little teasing for attending Edmonton’s smaller and less well-known university (compared to the University of Alberta), I think the school’s atmosphere is more supportive and less competitive. The university focuses on its students and their success and not on prestige.
Describe some of your best experiences so far.
While the pandemic and online learning have thrown everyone for a loop, my professors at MacEwan have continued to offer engaging and informative classes from their home offices. I’ve had the chance to conduct and publish my own research study, learn how to make podcasts and get practical interviewing experience. Brunch with my friends at De Dutch before a long day of classes has also become a highlight.
Are you involved in extracurricular activities?
I work for MacEwan’s student magazine, the griff, but my plans to join other extracurriculars were foiled because of a busy schedule and the ever-present pandemic. There are plenty of options for students looking to get involved, including the film club, the entrepreneurship club, the Japanese Conversation Club and the Bolo Tie Collective. MacEwan also makes it very easy for students to form new clubs. It’s a great way to form connections on campus.
What do you think of your professors?
The great thing about MacEwan is that many professors have extensive industry experience and are willing to help you reach your career goals. They spend the time getting to know their students, and in my experience they have always been willing to answer questions and offer advice. Don’t be afraid to pick their brains about course material or future career opportunities.
What do you think of the school’s administration?
Signing up for classes is relatively easy. It’s good to pay close attention to the academic calendar. Some required courses are only offered once a year, either in the fall or winter semesters. If they are prerequisite courses, you’ll need to plan your schedule carefully to meet your course requirements.
What is off-campus life like in Edmonton?
MacEwan is located in the heart of downtown, close to cozy cafés, great restaurants and plenty of entertainment. The city boasts about 50 different festivals over the year, including Taste of Edmonton and Deep Freeze. Edmonton also has a vibrant arts scene with live music, theatre and visual arts.
Best place to live: Downtown, if you can manage the higher rent. The McKernan/Belgravia neighbourhood has convenient LRT access.
Best place to study: Allard Hall
Best campus events: Fall Fest and Winter Fest
Best campus food: The build-your-own stir-fry bowl at Chopsticks
Best pizza: LOVEPIZZA or the PizzaForno vending machine
Best place for a fancy dinner: Sabor
Best giveaway: SAMU’s 12 Days of Giving or the tuition prizes offered at the beginning of the year
Best bar for hanging out: Towers
Best live music venue: Betty Andrews Recital Hall
Best hangover breakfast: The breakfast sandwich from the Dirtbag Café
Best place for a nap: Hands down, the green couches in Allard Hall
Best weekend activity: Take in a show at the Citadel Theatre or live music at the Winspear. Grab some dinner at your favourite nearby restaurant to round out the evening.
The thing that surprised me most about the school: Allard Hall is packed with industry technology, all accessible to students. There’s a video production lab with a green screen wall, professional audio equipment and anything from podcasting to photography gear.
If I could change one thing about the school: More coffee places on campus