Waterloo: the ultimate student town

Several groups of students sitting at tables in Uptown Waterloo

Naomi Written by Naomi (she/her), student

Welcome to Waterloo: a city filled with students, made for students. Prepare yourself for an unforgettable university experience and get ready to indulge in the dynamic environment that comes with being a student in the region of Waterloo.

Starting university or college can be a nerve-racking experience. If you’re a big social butterfly, the thought of swapping get-togethers and leisure time for studying and assignments may scare you. Luckily, Waterloo region offers a variety of events, places, and activities for students’ social lives to continue thriving. I can confidently say that I don’t feel stifled by my scholarly status – rather I reap the benefits of being a student, in a city made for students. Whether you’re an introvert or extrovert, Waterloo provides numerous ways for you to immerse yourself in its young and lively atmosphere. 

What made you choose Waterloo for university?

"There are students all around Waterloo, which creates a good atmosphere."

Olivera, Environment and Resources student

Activities and events

People watching movies in the park.

One of the many benefits of being a student at Waterloo is its surrounding environment, and the number of activities you can participate in. If you want to engage with your fellow classmates outside of study-time, the university has athletics and recreations intramurals to help you release any pent-up energy and stress! If you’re looking to explore your creative side, Waterloo Region’s Community Arts Centre offers arts education and holds exhibitions and events promoting engagement within the arts. Let’s say sports and arts aren’t really up your alley – you still have the chance to connect with other students in one of Waterloo’s 250+ clubs! Add in skating in Waterloo Town Square and 'Movies In The Park' (May-September) in Waterloo Park, and you’ll have activities and events to keep you busy no matter what time of year it is.

What do you enjoy most about Waterloo region?

"The amount of intelligent young people who share similar goals"

Teodora, Psychology student

Places to be

Kitchener City Hall

I’ve come to realize that the most prominent perk of being a student is that everyone around me is in the same boat. We’re all attending classes, discovering ourselves, and studying hard to achieve our goals in life. It’s nice to know you’re not alone in your journey, and it’s even better to share those moments with the students all around you. Waterloo provides the perfect atmosphere for this, with the abundance of cafés and restaurants on every street. On the days you’re studying, you can go to William’s Café in Waterloo and find 30 other students in there with the same agenda, which definitely helps with motivation. On the days you want to take a break from school, you can head to Uptown Waterloo and check out the board game cafes, arcades, pool halls, or various restaurants. The city is scattered with different locations and places to be, making it impossible to run out of things to do. 

Everyone is eager to get to know you and have a fun time

Matthew, Planning student


People in Waterloo Square.

Yes, we’re all hard-working students who prioritize school and need a good night’s sleep. But who doesn’t love a night off? Whether you’re a morning person or night owl, Waterloo’s nightlife is something every student must experience. Uptown Waterloo is filled with many bars, clubs, and other social gatherings, so it’s constantly buzzing with energy. If you’re lucky enough to be present during a holiday like St. Patrick’s Day or Halloween, then you’re bound to meet a bunch of new people and have a fun time. Plus, you can stick within your budget too, thanks to Pub on King’s $7.95 menu or Ethel's $5 burgers on Monday and Taco Tuesday special. Reward yourself occasionally with a night out in Waterloo, and I promise you won’t regret it!

The diversity allows everyone to feel comfortable in their environment

Jelena, Legal Studies student

With the notable student-friendly culture that Waterloo region possesses, there’s a place for everyone to feel welcomed. If you’re feeling overworked or stressed, take a small break and entertain yourself with the various activities, events, and places this city has to offer. Balancing yourself is the key, and you’ll come to realize you don’t have to trade out all your free time for studying or your education, but rather combine them together to create the most memorable university experience possible. Let’s be real – what fun would university be if you couldn’t indulge in all the perks that come with being a student? 


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