Get to know your campus and everything Concordia has to offer
A Guide to Campus Life
As a newbie at Concordia, you’re bound to live through tons of mishaps and missteps in your classes. The last thing you need is to be lost on campus, so here are a couple of pointers.
First of all, Concordia spans over two campuses—Sir George Williams and Loyola. SGW is located in the heart of Montreal, whereas Loyola sits in suburban Notre-Dame-de-Grâce.
Renovated in 2018, the Webster Library—LB for short—is considered a go-to study spot that accommodates student’s various studying techniques. Located at the downtown campus, it has tons of comfortable seating and private study rooms you can book through the Concordia site. Also, the librarians are always there to help if you're struggling to find books in the endless sea of shelves.
Many students take caffeine very seriously, especially during midterms—or when you have that dreaded 8 a.m. class. Fortunately, LB has its own Tim Hortons. It's tiny, so expect a line longer than the list of deadlines on your class syllabus. There's also a sticky microwave located near the LB café to warm up food, or leftovers from last night’s dinner.
The café has healthy options, but fair warning; you will spend half your paycheque on Bento sushi if you aren't careful. The security won't let you take your coffee cup upstairs, so ditch it and opt for a good mug or thermos. You’ll thank me later!
If you're sick of regular coffee shops, try Concordia’s student-run Hive Café Solidarity Co-op. One can be found in the Hall building, and another one at the Loyola campus. It's the cheapest coffee money can buy—only $2 for a large coffee. If you become a member, their membership card will get you a sweet student discount.
In your first year, you'll probably have a few classes at the Hall building, so be prepared to take a packed escalator for what feels like an eternity. If you’re famished or on a budget, Leïla Rhazi, a first-year human relations student has a great suggestion. Her favorite spot on campus is the People’s Potato on the Hall building’s seventh floor. All you need to bring is a container and your smile. They serve free vegan and gluten-free lunches for students from Monday to Friday.
The Hall building also has tons of great places to sit with your laptop. However, the best view is from the 13th floor in Concordia’s own Greenhouse. Even if you don't have a green thumb, it's a great place to recharge.
Lastly, the Hall building has Reggies, Concordia’s very own campus bar. It’s the perfect place to mingle with that special someone you've had your eye on in class.
For those of you headed to business school; you will live, breathe, eat and probably sleep in the Molson building... Just kidding! You’ll need a break from studying indoors, so why not check out the MB terrace with a cityscape view? You can get some sun while you study at one of the many tables.
In case you ever get hungry between study sessions, MB is right next to Ste. Catherine St., a culinary melting pot, with a bunch of restaurants worth exploring. Karim Hatel is a third-year student in marketing and human relations, and his meal of choice, especially during midterms, is Thai Express,—specifically the General Tao. He highly recommends it.
Compared to the bustling SGW campus, the Loyola campus has a completely different vibe. For starters, you'll see actual trees and grass!
“CJ, the Communication [Studies and Journalism] building is like walking to Hogwarts,” said Malcolm Asselin, a fourth year communications student and the Concordia Student Union’s student life coordinator. The enormous glass doors paired with grey stone architecture makes CJ look picturesque on the outside. On the inside though, it is home to the famous hotdog lounge, known for its huge pop art neon sign smacked on the wall on the ground floor.
“CJ, the Communication [Studies and Journalism] building is like walking to Hogwarts” — Malcolm Asselin
Loyola has a main cafeteria, a dining hall, and one Tim Hortons, so food and coffee options are limited. Pack yourself a lunch and enjoy eating at the quad! The quad steps lead into a grassy area of trees littered with picnic tables.
“I like to sit down and enjoy nature, and see all the little animals while I eat,'' said Gabi Mandl, third-year PhD candidate in chemistry. Once you've sat down at a table, the scenery is incredibly peaceful.
Both campuses also have their own workout gym. SGW has Le Gym, located close to the metro, but sadly your only view is of the basement walls. Asselin prefers to spend his time at the Loyola campus gymnasium because of their indoor basketball court.
The Vanier Library at Loyola is older, dustier and less renovated than the Webster library, but if you need to focus, or crave a quiet place to study, it's your best bet!
Whether your classes are downtown or at Loyola campus, make sure to grab some friends and check out some of these spots in between your classes. There is a place for everyone on campus, and definitely no shortage of places to explore.
This article originally appeared in The Reorientation Issue, published September 7, 2021.