The Journal’s guide to residence living

Our staff shares their tips for your new home

Journal File Photo

The first intimidating steps into residence come with dozens of tricks.

Each residence hall has its own culture, complete with the traditions and history that are never covered in the University brochures.

Find your residence below and learn secrets only a residence veteran would know.

Chown Hall

If the residents of Chown room 237 are reading this, congratulations!

You have been placed in an oversized double room with a bathroom. If you are the resident of any other room in Chown, befriend the residents of 237 as soon as possible.

No matter what your room, please invest in a fan.

Chown is a great residence in terms of proximity to lecture and dining halls, but it also appears to have a close proximity to the sun because the building is boiling.

Something to not sweat about: the lock on your dorm door jamming. Just quickly push the door handle up counter-clockwise and body-check your door.

—Josh Granovsky ArtSci ’20


Jean Royce Hall (West Campus)

Navigating the transit system is key to a smooth West Campus experience. It ensures that even if you wake up a little later than planned, you aren’t sprinting after buses. Students who know bus routes tend to travel around campus, and the city, in a smarter way.

You’ll also be spared from waiting for a late, soon-to-be crowded bus in the middle of winter if you get on the bus stop just down the hill from West Campus.

Students can start by getting acquainted with regular bus times through Google Maps, or download the Transit app on their cellular device to keep up with all real-time transit arrivals. This is the only way you’ll be guaranteed a seat on the bus in turn guarantees that your 8:30 a.m. lecture on Main Campus won’t be all that bad.

—Jasnit Pabla ArtSci ’20

Waldron Tower

First, some general Wally tips. When walking up George Street— also known as the Wind Tunnel—in the rain, layered jackets will serve you better than an inevitably broken umbrella.

In cold weather, you can get straight to Ban Righ Hall by walking underground through the KGH basement.

You can also take a shortcut to a big breakfast in Botterell Hall if you cut through the Cancer Research Institute parking lot across from Waldon. As for the Waldron Expansion, find the best shower during the first week—water pressure and cleanliness are key—and stick with it.

Finally, don’t forget to make as much use as possible of the side door that lets you straight into the Expansion common room to avoid the extra trip around the building.

—Meredith Wilson-Smith, ArtSci ’20

 Leggett Hall

If you snag a room in Leggett Hall, prepare to live in the lap of luxury. There’s very little to complain about when you have a private room, an extra-long double bed, and a full washroom to share with only one other person. However, having a private room doesn’t necessarily mean having privacy.

Unfortunately, Leggett’s walls are paper thin, so not only will you hear all of your floor-mates’ dirty secrets but—if you’re not careful—they’ll hear yours as well. I recommend investing in a pair of earplugs or creating a bedtime music playlist.

Otherwise, you’ll likely wake up three times a night to the sound of a door slamming. Also, the bathroom doors can be easily unlocked from both sides, so always knock before entering.

While your next-door neighbour may become one of your closest friends, everyone deserves a right to privacy.

—Ally Mastantuono, ArtSci ’20


McNeill House

Many people may not be familiar with McNeill House, but it was the perfect residence for me in first year. McNeill only has four floors, so you are bound to get really close with the other students around you.

Each floor has three washrooms, so you are never going to have to wait for a shower to free up.

The basement common room is giant, which makes it perfect for floor-wide movie marathons or study sessions. Small tip: don’t try to take the elevator from the ground lobby if you live on the first floor because it will jam and refuse to move for a few minutes.

—Tegwyn Hughes, ArtSci ’20

Morris Hall

In Morris, it’s always better to take the stairs due to the slow elevator. If you want to beat that early September heat consider going to the basement common rooms, which offer a nice cool place to study.

If you want to embrace the heat, open up your curtains. By mid-afternoon the sunlight will be streaming in to make for the perfect afternoon nap—especially in the winter.

Another thing to keep in mind is that Morris floor names start at zero so if you are on the third floor you are actually on the fourth floor, if you are on the first you are actually on the second and so forth.

Lastly, if high water pressure is something you crave the northernmost side of Morris’ second is home to what is referred to as the “power shower,” which hosts water pressure so intense it may hurt.

— Tessa Warburton, ArtSci ’21

Adelaide Hall

Welcome to Adelaide Hall, an all-girls, centrally located and quiet residence on University Avenue.

Since it’s connected to Ban Righ Hall, your building key works in both residences. This lets you use two entrances, either on Stuart Street. or Bader Lane. You don’t have to leave the building to eat a meal during the school week; just walk into Ban Righ through the second or third floor entrances.

In addition to the common rooms, there are two other dedicated study spaces in the shared building. The Dean of Women’s Lounge is in the main foyer of Ban Righ, while there’s a basement study room at the end of the hall next to the kitchens.

— Amelia Rankine, ArtSci ’20

Graduate Residence in John Deutsch Hall (JDUC)

Graduate residence is the heart of campus. Graduate certainly does have the best location on campus, located right beside the gym to work off the freshman fifteen and directly in between two libraries to study the night away.

The heart of graduate residence does however come in the form of Fred, the nicest maintenance man one could ever meet. Whenever anything needs fixing Fred is on it immediately.

Graduate also offers the biggest common room on the third floor of any residence with a brand-new flat screen TV, dartboard and huge billiard table to entertain friends. The highlight of the residence is for sure private washrooms with each single room. That means no waiting to use the washroom or awkward hall walk to the shower — it’s right there ready to use. 

—Josh Saltzman and Nicole Kaps, ArtSci ’20

Leonard Hall

Leonard is conveniently located right above a dining hall, but if you want to miss the lunch rush go down right before class hours end.

If you live on the fourth floor, make friends with a weight-lifter to carry your laundry up the stairs—or just break a leg and get a sweet elevator key.

Send your Amazon packages to Watts Hall and your letters to Lenny.

Prop open the side door close to Albert for less struggling with keys on cold winter days.

Even though Lazy is closer, walk the extra 5 steps and get Loco breakfast.

Finally, for the love of God, look both ways when you cross Albert Street.

Jodie Grieve, ArtSci ’21


Harkness Hall

Harkness may be far but if prepared it can be an amazing sanctuary. First off bring extra blankets, in the late fall/early winter, the heat likely won’t be on, and it will be cold. As well for a better sleep get ear plugs: house parties in the student ghetto are loud.

Make sure you eat enough, no matter how far the cafeteria seems, remember the ARC is your best friend when it comes to lunch.

If anything breaks, or the outlets stop working, or the ceiling leaks, make a maintenance request form. It’s the best way to deal with the maintenance quirks of Harkness, and finally: get to know your floor mates. Some of them may become your best friends.

— Fred Hook, ArtSci ’21



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