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Wilfrid Laurier University Leaf
October 21, 2016
Canadian Excellence

Kandice in James Bay, heading to Kashechewan First Nation

Prospective Students



This is the place where prospective and incoming students can come to find information about Wilfrid Laurier University and Aboriginal Student Services! This page will have links to admission, program and event information as well as information on where the Aboriginal Students' Recruitment and Outreach Officer is traveling to! 

Pre-admission counseling to prospective students about admission policies, funding, and program planning is available to anyone interested in learning more about academic programs at Laurier's Waterloo or Brantford campus. We can also help with career planning and helping students find information on other institutions as well. However, we cannot assess transcripts for transfer credit or admissions. She is available for any student questions so please don't hesitate to contact us!

Waterloo campus: Melissa Ireland - and 519-884-1970 ext. 4190

Brantford campus: Bonnie Whitlow - and 519-884-1970 ext. 5884

Testimonials from Aboriginal Laurier students

When asked about the Aboriginal Student Centre:

"It offers a place for us to get the sense of community we might not  get in the classroom setting, great employees also work tirelessly for their students."

"The centre gives me a sense of home, a place for me to feel comfortable. There is no other school I would rather be at, simply because of Melissa and the centre."

"The Aboriginal Student Centre was like my second home, it allowed me to access my culture, and provided me with academic help."

"It is a place to hang out and feel welcome where you are not a minority. You can stay connected to your culture while not being on the reserve. It helped me academically to stay motivated and get the best grades possible."

"It is a family."

"A program to help you discover new experiences, help you reach your goals, help you recognize the right path for yourself, and to give you a sense of trust, comfort, and community in an unfamiliar / new environment."

Why Self-ID?

What is Self-ID and why is it important to Self-ID as an Aboriginal student?

A student declares they have Aboriginal background, heritage and ancestry when applying to university through the Ontario University Application Centre (OUAC). The term Aboriginal includes: First Nations (status and non-status), Metis and Inuit. This question is on the online application and is given in a check-box yes/no option.

Why is it important to Self-ID as an Aboriginal student?

First, it gives the Office of Aboriginal Initiatives a 'heads-up' that you have applied to Laurier so they can contact you about the services available to you as an Aboriginal student.

Second, it makes you eligible for the Aboriginal Admission Policy which gives you an assistance, should your application need it, in the admissions process. 

The information only goes to the Office of Aboriginal Initiatives in order to connect immediately with Aboriginal students. The information is not shared across campus or used in any negative ways against you. It is kept private throughout your time at Laurier.

Further information can be found here:

Laurier's Undergraduate Aboriginal Admission Policy

Laurier's Aboriginal Admissions Policy is for self-identified Aboriginal undergraduate students (both 101 and 105 applicants). A self-identified Aboriginal student is eligible for admission if they fall below, but within 5%, of the program cut-off they applied to. 

In order to be considered within the 5% window, applicants must provide a written statement outlining any work experience, achievements, educational goals and why they believe they will be successful at post-secondary studies.

Please see:

Why Laurier?

So you're thinking about choosing Laurier to complete your post secondary education goals! There are many reasons to choose each institution and here are a few to choose Laurier:

1) Size: At our Waterloo campus there are just over 14,500 students which might seem like a lot but once you get on campus you'll see it really isn't! The small class sizes and campus (only a 7 minute walk from corner to corner!) make the Waterloo campus a small and intimate learning environment. At our Brantford campus there are just over 3,000 students. The campus is a spread throughout the downtown core but is still only a 7 minute walk from corner to corner. The older looking buildings give it a Ivy League campus feel.

2) Student Experience: Laurier is considered a leader in giving students the best overall experience possible. Between interactive learning environments (seminars, etc.) and the thousands of volunteer opportunities on campus, there is something for everyone! Whether it's campus clubs, varsity athletics, recreation, culture or part time jobs; you will find a place for you on campus! At the Aboriginal Student Centre we give you a safe place to come and get involved in as well!

3) Location: Both our Waterloo and Brantford campuses are located in the heart of southwestern Ontario. It is approximately an hour drive to get to Toronto from both locations and another hour you can go over the border shopping in the USA. Our campuses are located within a 2.5 hour drive of 18 First Nations communities. There is an airport, VIA Rail, bus station and GO Transit in Kitchener-Waterloo allowing for easier transportation home.

4) Community: At both of Laurier's undergraduate campuses there is a tremendous amount of school spirit and campus community! All you need to do is attend one of our football games or free music at noon concerts to see what a supportive student community we have here. In Kitchener-Waterloo and Brantford there are large urban Aboriginal populations (10,000 and 8,000 people respectively) Six Nations and Mississaugas of the New Credit First Nation are only a fifteen minute drive from the Brantford campus. At the Aboriginal Student Centres provides a welcoming meeting place for students!

5) Academic Programs/Reputation: Laurier's academic programs are well known for building student's skills and making them marketable for the work force upon graduation. 96% of Laurier grads gaining employment within 6 months after convocation. Laurier's School of Business & Economics is internationally accredited and has one of the best CO-OP programs in Canada. The Faculty of Science programs are the fastest growing at Laurier with Kinesiology and Health Science leading the way in innovative and hands on learning. Laurier's Music program is our smallest but guarantees students at least 1 hour of individual instruction with a professor per week. Our Brantford campus has strong community partnerships with many programs allowing for outside the classroom experience for credits. Our new Bachelor of Social Work program has strong Aboriginal content. 

Academic Programs

Laurier has seven academic faculties - Arts, Science, Business & Economics, Music, Graduate & Postdoctoral Studies, Social Work, and Education - and campuses in Waterloo, Brantford, Kitchener and Toronto, Ontario.

Visit Laurier

You can visit Laurier through the Virtual Tour or in person! There are four options for campus so pick whichever one suits your needs!

For an online Laurier experience click here for Laurier's Virtual Tour of the Waterloo and Brantford campuses.

To book a campus tour on any Laurier campus with the Aboriginal Students Recruitment and Outreach Officer please contact Cara Loft at or 519-884-1970 ext. 4312.

To book a campus tour with Laurier's Waterloo Campus Welcome Centre please fill out the form found here

To book a campus tour with Laurier's Brantford Campus Welcome Centre please fill out the form found here.

Visit Laurier Near You

Laurier's Aboriginal Students Recruitment and Outreach Officer participates in the Aboriginal Postsecondary Information Program (APSIP) and does community visits as well. If you would like to request Cara come to your community please send her an email or call her: or 519-884-1970 ext. 4312

Click here for more information and the schedule for the APSIP Tour.

Aboriginal Post Secondary Information Program

APSIP website: <click here>

APSIP Mission Statement:

The Aboriginal Post Secondary Information Program (APSIP) is committed to enhancing the awareness of educational opportunities for Aboriginal learners while empowering them to pursue post-secondary education. APSIP seeks to highlight the diverse opportunities available to Aboriginal learners interested in post-secondary education; thus enabling APSIP members to assist Aboriginal learners in achieving their educational goals. APSIP seeks to enhance the development of Information Programs in the area of recruitment, educational awareness, accessibility and participation; designed to increase the number of Aboriginal learners pursuing post-secondary education in Canada, specially targeting Ontario, Quebec and the sovereign Nations linked by treaty to Canada, as a result of the network between Aboriginal communities and this body.

What Do We Do:

APSIP is a collective of Aboriginal recruiters from Ontario and Quebec colleges and universities that travel across Ontario and Quebec speaking to Aboriginal youth about post-secondary education. We speak to the students about our personal experiences in education and the benefits of going to school. We also give them ideas about what to think about when choosing what school and program is right for them.

APSIP is available for workshops on a variety of different educational topics. For example: scholarship and bursary assistance, choosing the right school, differences between colleges and universities, etc.

APSIP Near You!

If you are interested in bringing APSIP to your community for a career fair or workshop please get in touch with Kandice through email ( or phone (519-884-1970 ext. 4312) to inquire about availability.

SEEDS Program

This program is offered at both the Brantford and Waterloo campuses! It's called the 'SEEDS' Program and is designed as a scholarship inventive program in order to help first year students succeed at Laurier!

What Is It?!

If you complete four tasks such as: Learning Circles, Study Halls, Elders in Residence, Aboriginal Academic Success Program, etc. Plus two check-ins with the Aboriginal Student Support Coordinator then you receive a $500 scholarship released to your One-Card in order to help with Laurier expenses! You must also be enrolled in four courses and maintain a minimum 5.0 GPA.

Apply Online Now! Click here

Campus Life

Undergrad Student Union (Brantford and Waterloo Campus)

Brantford Campus Athletics and Recreation

Waterloo Campus Athletics and Recreation

Wilfrid Laurier University - Department of Athletics and Recreation

 Health Services

Student Leadership Centre

Information here.

 Diversity and Equity Office

Information here.

Study Abroad and Exchange Opportunities

Information here.

Student Services

Brantford Campus Student Affairs:

Waterloo Campus Student Affairs:

Services available to students are:  Residential Services, Athletics and Recreation, Career & Co-Op Opportunities, Health and Counseling Services, Learning Services, Accessible Learning, etc. So, basically anything you'll hopefully ever need! :)

Residence and Early Move-In

Residence Styles
Students live in one of two styles of residence; dormitory or apartment style. There are pros and cons to each style, but regardless of where you live, there will be a community of students experiencing first year at university just like you.

Dormitory style: Students are either in a single or double room, with a shared bathroom. In dormitory style, a meal plan is mandatory.  This style offers a great opportunity to get to know your entire community! Examples of dormitory buildings: Waterloo College Hall, Clara Conrad, Little House, MacDonald House, Euler/Leopold, King St. to name a few.

Apartment Style: Students can be in a single or double room in a self contained suite with a kitchen, living area and bathrooms. Meal plans are optional in this type of residence, as students have the ability to cook meals in the suites. This style offers a great blend between privacy and socializing with your neighbours. Examples of apartment style residences: University Place, Bricker Residence, Laurier Place to name a few.

The Don: A Residence Life Don is an upper year student who lives on each floor. Their responsibility is to help facilitiate a smooth transition from high school to university for each student. The Don helps to promote personal growth and friendships by facilitating programing for their communities, creating mentoring relationships with their students, and promoting responsible behaviour. The Don acts as a social and academic role model for students and helps promote a community environment.

Living Learning Communities: Our LLCs are designed to extend opportunities for learning and growth beyond the classroom to a select group of students who share common residential and personal interests.
Laurier’s LLCs are situated on campus in our residence buildings. Living in an LLC is very similar to living in a traditional style residence community. The main difference is that the LLC Residence Life Dons tailor their programming initiatives to the theme of their community. As well, the students living in an LLC are given the opportunity to facilitate a more community-based approach to programming initiatives and activities with their fellow students.

More information on Residence and Residential Services can be found here

Early Move-In

The Aboriginal Student Centre offers early move-in dates and programming/orientation for Aboriginal students living in residence at both the Waterloo and Brantford campuses.

If interested, please contact Cara at or 519-884-1970 ext. 4312

An example of Early Move-In Programming is available here.

Aboriginal Student Services

Greetings ~ Ahniin ~  Sgeno ~ Shekon ~ Shekoli ~ Tansi ~ Kwey ~ Boozhoo~

The Office of Aboriginal Initiatives offers a wide range of supportive, holistic, cultural and academic programming. We are committed to fostering a positive student experience for all Aboriginal students: First Nations, Status, Non-Status, Inuit, and Métis persons. We also provide education, awareness, resources and training regarding Aboriginal culture to all students, faculty and staff. Our services assist Aboriginal students from the application process through to graduation:

    • Access to smudging
    • Community outreach
    • Scholarship and Bursary assistance
    • Computer and wifi access
    • Quiet study room
    • Admissions assistance
    • Visiting Elders program
    • SEEDS program
    • Resources for faculty and staff
    • Academic and personal counseling
    • Advocacy and referrals
    • Regular gatherings and feasts
    • Resource library

For more information on services for students at Laurier's WATERLOO CAMPUS, click here
For more information on services for  students at Laurier's BRANTFORD CAMPUS, click here

Laurier Aboriginal Scholarships

Faculty of Education Scholarships