Why did you choose your program? What makes it unique to you?
I chose my program due to the versatility it offered. Even though economics is something all commerce students need to take, a lot of other schools I looked at only offered the programs under an arts degree.
That being said I was really interested when I learned this program provided me with the opportunity to both major in econ, while still obtaining a commerce degree. This program is kind of like a jack of all trades option with an intensive focus on econ.
If you even look at the program page on the website, it shows in your upper years that you are able to hone in and focus on what you’re interested in. You can choose to have a marketing based focus, a real estate & housing focus, and the list goes on to feature essentially every other commerce program offered as an option to explore. Something I love about commerce at Guelph is the focus on sustainability. From the Lang Sustainability Conference, to a first year wide graded competition about ethical dilemmas, you could say that the Lang School of Business and Economics provides a fresh take on conduction business in this constantly changing world.
How would you describe your first year at Guelph?
To say I loved my first year would be a huge understatement. A large part of my decision to go to Guelph had been based on how I totally felt at home and fell in love with the campus. I had been fortunate enough to be recruited as a varsity athlete, and that only heightened my experience. I’m someone who thrives off of being busy, and with classes, clubs, practice, and social events, I was really in my element. By getting involved, I was able to make a great group of friends in class, on residence, on my team, and just on campus. The friends I made played a huge part in making
my first year unforgettable. I was able to find people who were willing to be out there and get involved on campus with me, and there is nothing
better than being able to give back and learn new things with people you love spending time with. Although I was not old enough for the nightlife, the city itself was great too. I cannot tell you how many times I went on runs through the Arboretum, or just had an amazing time exploring downtown and all the great little shops/experiences you can find throughout.
For a UofG Management Economics & Finance Student...
What’s an interesting quirk of your school that freshmen should know?
More a tradition and not quite a quirk, but something I found really neat in was the painting of the cannon. For those who do not know, right smack in the middle of campus we have an old cannon, and it’s a tradition for students to paint it. I would always find it kind of exciting to see something new on my walk to class each day. It was used to promote school initiatives, social justice based opinions, residence halls, and even certain programs. I found it a cool way to express pride or spread awareness in the school community.
What is some advice you would give high school students when applying to your program?
A super huge piece of advice would be to keep an open mind. All the way up until the second semester of grade 11, I was dead set on studying something science based in university. As a member of my school’s health and wellness program I really did not
Do you feel there’s a good support/transition program for first year students?
When picking a university, something I really kept in mind was whether I could genuinely envision myself there in the next few years. Don’t get me wrong, academics is the main point of going to university, but you want an experience and institution that will provide you with the support you need to succeed. Something that really helped me academically (and I’d maybe add socially) was living in an academic cluster. That essentially means everyone in your little residence tower/floor (depending where you live) is in a similar program and taking similar classes. It was such a great way to make friends who had the same classes, and was a great ressource to have if you ever needed help. As an athlete, the department of athletics was always there as a great option for support. They even created a Student Athlete Mentorship program that pairs you up with an upper year student athlete who had taken similar course loads. I am a strong believer that what you give is what you get, and that applies to first year. If you are involved and actively seek help or improvement, you will see the results you want.
consider any other options. While it’s great to have an idea of what you want in the future, life throws you some curveballs, so definitely consider taking some diverse electives while you have the chance. Personally, my life would be a lot different if I had not taken that
grade 12 economics class as a way to fill up my schedule. To piggyback off of that, do your research. That is something I could not stress enough. In my case, all the crazy research and spreadsheets I made based off of university websites is what really made my transition from one pathway to another
go off without a hitch. You need to know the average required for your programs, and the prerequisites you need to get there.
A very special thank you to our interviewee...
Hey! My name is Lauren Chew. I am entering my second year at the University of Guelph, where I am pursuing a Bachelor of Commerce with a major in Management Economics and Finance (MEF). I am a member of the varsity wrestling team, as well as a Participating Analyst for the Guelph Student Investment Council (GSIC). A bit about me, I am working with the Government of Canada this summer and this coming fall, and I am obsessed with hiking and backcountry camping! I’m super excited about this initiative, feel free to reach out if you have any questions!