CARLETON UNIVERSITY

Carleton University (CU) is located in the heart of Canada, it’s capital city, Ottawa, ON![1] CU has six faculties; Arts and Social Science, Engineering and Design, Graduate and Postdoctoral Affairs, Public Affairs, Science, and Business [2]. Carleton University is home of the Carleton Ravens, and the school colours are red and black [2]. CU has 13 varsity sports, divided between mens and womens teams [2]. Since 2007, most Greek Life activities at Carleton have been overseen by the Carleton University Greek Council (CUGC), this includes 8 fraternities, 8 sororities, and 1 Co-Ed group [2]. Established in 1942, CU offers 125 programs, and has 26,000 students [1]. CU welcomes around 2,800 students into residency each year [1]. Buildings on campus, with a few exceptions, are connected by a five kilometer-long system of underground pedestrian tunnels [2].

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QUESTIONS

For a Carleton Accounting - Sprott School of Business  Student...

JUICY

4

What is some advice you would give students applying to your program?

For those applying to the Carleton BCom, I would suggest working on trying to get involved in the community and keeping your grades up for the application - as you should no matter where you are applying. I would suggest that if you are taking BCom with a concentration in mind look at the career you want to obtain and how you can do that (eg. Do you want to pursue Marketing? Would you like to pursue a Masters in Marketing? Which institutions offer that? Does Carleton BCom allow you to take the required prereqs that are needed for those programs?). If you already know the concentration you want (and if you want to do co-op) - I would suggest putting it in your application. Getting into co-op later can be harder, so if you have the grades I would suggest doing that during the high school application. At Carleton, you can change your concentration once you have completed your first year - and once every semester (so it is pretty flexible but I would suggest visiting BCMC and Academic Advising before doing so). It’s advisable to declare a concentration in your second year, as not doing so could delay your graduation. 

If you have the opportunity I would suggest taking BAF3M (Financial Accounting Fundamentals) or its equivalent in your high school and keeping those notes as all BCom and BIB students need to take accounting and that course at my high school covered about 85% of the course content for BUSI 1004 (Financial Accounting for Business Students).

5

Do you feel there's good support for freshman students?

There are quite a few resources on campus to help freshmen (or anyone transferring to/attending Carleton in general). Firstly, First Year Connection Mentors (FYC Mentors) are available for incoming students, and it’s easy to sign up! I had a mentor coming into Carleton,

(and now I am a mentor!) and it was a great way to have someone who is in the same/similar program who knows what you have gone through. 

Other than a mentor, there is also the opportunity to attend PASS and CSAS workshops (both can be found online and in-person through the library) which are both great resources! PASS is run by an upper-year student who has gone through that first or second-year class and offers review sessions and worksheets for some classes that students may find difficult (eg. Accounting, Econ, psychology, engineering). I would suggest everyone try their Mock Exams they do it for midterms and finals and a great way to find out what you might have to review! CSAS provides workshops that help you with different aspects of university life (dealing with planning, exams, procrastination and more). Great thing is that if you complete 5 sessions in a semester (1 hour each) then you get a certificate, and some profs will give you up to 5% bonus overall for attending X amount of sessions (usually between 2-5 sessions) - which can be the difference between a letter grade (eg. A to an A+). 

Of course, there are a lot of other resources such as therapy dogs, the Wellness center, health and counselling which are all services available to all students. For those on Residence, your Residence Fellows are a great resource. They are upper-year students who are available to you and create a variety of events for your floors (and they put a lot of work into it) so it's a great way to meet other people on your floor (also attend the res-wide events, there is a lot of cool things such as free ice cream and stress relief events near exams and always cool prizes to win!) For business students, I would suggest they also visit BCMC (Business Career Management Center) as they are a great resource for students who are in co-op, want to know more about the future careers in their degree and develop their resume/get more involved. 

3

How would you describe the workload and work-life balance?

The workload is definitely different from high-school. The first thing you notice is that there are far fewer assignments and far bigger textbooks to read. For those entering the BCom, the first year tends to be the year all Bcom students have the same courses, and I would suggest getting a study group if you can as it is easy to fall off track without an accountability buddy/group if you are not used to large textbook readings. For the typical course in first year, there are between 20-50 pages to read per subject and some ‘homework questions’ to do. Some courses also have weekly/biweekly quizzes that are worth 1-5% of which can help boost your grade as these are open book! Overall, if you start off with a good study schedule and keep yourself accountable, you should be able to succeed in your program. 

While academics are important (and should generally be the focus when you are in university) it's good to have time to yourself to do what you enjoy. I would suggest joining some clubs as there is something for everyone! Also, take some time to go out, oftentimes some students on 

Residence will just use the tunnels the whole winter and forget to go outside - your body needs some Vitamin D and sunshine! Grab a friend and even just visit Billings Shopping Center or Greenboro Walmart - it's a great way to go outside, maybe grab some snacks and get some sunshine and fresh air!

1

Why did you choose your program? What makes it unique to you?

Personally, I had a lot of interests through high school, but I discovered Accounting through my Business SHSM and knew I had found what I wanted to pursue as a career. Many Universities offer a BBA and BCom, and sometimes it can be hard to figure out which degree to pursue. I read testimonials from other students in university (similar to what you are doing now!) and got in contact with some students to get their insight as to how the program is and what they like about it. 

When I narrowed down to my top 3 universities, I visited those schools and I found that Carleton’s atmosphere and vibe is unlike any other university I had visited. The campus is quite beautiful and I could clearly see myself living there for 4 years, while I couldn’t at other campuses. One of the things that I really liked was the feeling of family in the Sprott School (the business faculty of Carleton). There is a lounge for Sprott Students - and in there you will find Undergraduate Sprott Students of various years and everyone is willing to help one another. Upon that, the Accounting program is structured in a great way that you can not only take the BCom courses like your peers but also have room for some electives while taking all your accounting courses. Carleton also offers all the courses needed to obtain the CPA if you so choose to pursue the designation. The Accounting stream is well thought out and the Faculty is very knowledgeable, and I don’t think I would have the same experience at any other institution.

2

What do you think is special about Carleton's campus life?

Firstly, Carleton is kind of secluded (wait hear me out - it’s not scary!) which comes with its benefits. UOttawa’s campus reminds me of UofT, very busy, near some big roads and across parliament and near Rideau Mall (the mall most

students go to). On the other hand, Carleton is slightly off on the side (I like to think like its own little island) where there are not too many busy roads nearby and cars coming in are usually students and staff, and it’s quieter. When I went to visit Carleton, some things that stood out were nature. There is the Rideau Canal along the campus, which is so calming to walk by (and there are picnic tables alongside it - great for studying in the summer and fall). Upon that there is a bus stop right across the Residences and a train station across that too. This provides easy ways to go off-campus, whether it's to go to Walmart to get some food, to the mall or a late-night adventure, mobility is not a concern. 

One thing that I love about Carleton is Residences and accessibility. Carleton’s Residences are a street away from all the ‘Classroom buildings’ so it's not that much of a walk. I have heard stories of friends in other universities who live on Residence but have to walk 30 mins to get onto campus, while it is usually a 5-10 minute walk from Residence to almost any ‘classroom building’. Upon that, winters in Ottawa are pretty cold, but most students don’t walk outside - they use the tunnels. The tunnels are great and are warm in the winter and you can access 95% of campus through the tunnels without going outside. Sometimes you see students in residence wearing shorts and flip flops to class, while students who commute come in with their big jackets and winter boots. Carleton also is pretty accessible, there are ramps everywhere, in the tunnels and outside as well as elevators in every building. 

There are a lot of cool events on campus as well, CUSA (student council) SBSS (Sprott student council) and RRRA (Rideau River Residence Association) all plan and host a variety of events for students to get involved, both online and in person. 

 

A very special thank you to our interviewee...

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SAKINA JANMOHAMED

My name is Sakina Janmohamed and I am entering my third year of the Honours Bachelor of Commerce Program with a concentration in Accounting at Carleton University. I am quite involved on campus, from being a Residence Fellow last year, to being a Senior Mentor, TA, and involved in many clubs. I love to read and discover new places to eat. I am always open to any questions from students looking to know more about Carleton, the BCom program, the application process or the university in general. Feel free to reach out to me on LinkedIn.

Third Year Commerce Student at Carleton University

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QUESTIONS

For a Carleton Journalism/Political Science Student...

JUICY

3

What's an interesting quirk about your school that freshmen should know?

The campus has a 5-kilometre tunnel system that connects all of its buildings together and is always available for students to use. As someone from Vancouver, BC, they’ve saved me countless times from the freezing temperatures Ottawa is known for. Beyond the convenience, though, the tunnels are also hubs for campus clubs, and many of them have painted murals from previous years that offer fascinating glimpses into Carleton’s history; it all feels like an underground art exhibition. At night, the tunnels are occasionally used by skateboarders, so you’ll always feel some kind of interesting energy as you walk back from the library or your evening classes.

1

Why did you choose your program? What makes it unique to you?

I've always loved storytelling and writing, and journalism felt like a perfect combination of both my passions and strengths. I'm also a very outgoing person, so meeting new people and learning about their experiences is something that I find incredibly interesting and fulfilling. In my opinion, Carleton's journalism school shares those same values and emphasizes the importance of seeking a wide variety of voices to share with our communities.

The other strength of Carleton's journalism school is its history and prestige. From the moment I stepped into my first class, I felt that the program cared about its students and was dedicated to its mission of inspiring the next generation of writers. I've met countless professionals and notable news writers through guest lectures, and the learning structure is gradual so I've never felt like I was in over my head. The school has a time-tested formula for teaching its students, but its also evolving to address the changing dynamics of Canadian society and media consumption. In short, Carleton's journalism program has a legacy that it wants to live up to, and based on my experience so far, has fully succeeded in that goal.

4

What is some advice you would give students applying to your program?

Be prepared to go outside your comfort zone! You'll soon learn the best stories require exploration and constant discussions with a variety of communities and people. For example, one assignment I had in my first year involved being given a portion of Ottawa to walk around in, and I was instructed to chat with locals and find a news pitch in that area to report back to my professor. You might feel uncomfortable talking to strangers at first, as I did, but the program gives you the skills to be confident and engaging with your questions, and you'll quickly find people love to chat about themselves. 

2

What do you think is special about Carleton's campus life?

What drew me to Carleton was the balance I felt as I toured the university. The campus has its own space, so you feel like you’re part of a supportive community that’s bustling with energy and opportunities. When you want to leave, you have all of Ottawa available to explore. You can bus down to Byward Market for some Beavertails or other sweet treats, go to TD Place to check out the restaurants, or hit up Parliament Hill and see the heart of Canada’s federal government. You’ll get both the tightknit campus experience that smaller universities can offer and the city experience that you might find in larger universities. And with the friends you make on campus, it’ll make the off-campus experiences and memories even better.

5

What's your favourite class/elective and why?

I’m really passionate about U.S politics, so I’ll say PSCI 3210, Electoral Politics in the U.S. Beyond the content, which I already love, the professor structured the class to be discussion-based and delivered through audio lectures that are designed to be like podcasts. Our readings are also essays from the Atlantic, so the content has a personal touch and ties in well to my journalism studies. I’ve also appreciated that the class is flexible, and the professor has told us that he’ll be adapting the content based upon which themes are making headlines in the world of U.S politics.

 

A very special thank you to our interviewee...

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BENJAMIN STEVEN

Hey everyone! My name is Benjamin Steven, and I'm a second-year student at Carleton University doing a Combined Honours in Journalism and Political Science. I love U.S politics, and I hope to become an American political writer in the future, so coming to Ottawa for university felt  like a strong step forward in pursuing that goal. I'm always available to chat about Carleton's journalism and political science programs, so reach out to me on LinkedIn, Twitter (bensteven_s), or Instagram (@bensteven.s). All the best with your applications! 

Second Year Combined Honours Journalism & Poli Sci Student at Carleton University

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