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Residence and student life

Many of your best university memories will undoubtedly come from late nights chats in residence, joining clubs, or scoring the winning goal for your soccer team.

With guaranteed residence for first-year and transfer students, you'll be in the middle of the action! Be close to your classes, the Student Life Centre, the gym, places to eat, and more. Each of Waterloo's first-year residences offer personal and academic support such as Living-Learning Communities, residence life staff, and social activities to help you adjust to living away from home.

Types of residences at Waterloo

  Main Waterloo residences University College residences
Located on campus? Yes Yes
Single and double rooms? Yes Yes
Suite/apartment style and traditional dorm style? Both  Traditional style
Where do I eat? At residence or at outlets around campus At your residence
Meal plans Required for traditional residences;
optional for suite-style
Included in the cost of residence
How many students in each residence? Range from 320 to 1380 students Range from 142 to 360 students
Learn more Waterloo Residence website University Colleges

Getting involved

Our campus is packed with opportunities to get involved no matter how unique your interests. Between our clubs, teams, sports leagues, societies, and events, there’s something for everyone!

running club

200+ clubs

Explore your interests and meet new friends through clubs and student societies.

waterloo hockey players on ice

Staying active

Compete or play for fun in Waterloo's sports and campus recreation programs.

students at concert

A city for students

Enjoy life in our student-friendly city that's home to 2 universities and a college.


Eating on campus

Whether it's burritos and smoothies at Frsh, the all-day breakfast at Modern Language's Diner, or creating your own pho at South Side Marketplace, our 28 on-campus eateries mean that you'll always have plenty of choice.

And you're never far from a coffee shop like Starbucks, Tim Hortons, William's, and student-run locations which are great for good coffee and cheap snacks. Need caffeine late at night? Grab coffee, food, snacks, and more 24/7 in the Student Life Centre!

Student adding dressing to a bowl of salad

Special dietary needs?

Vegetarian? Observing Ramadan? Have allergies? We can help! See our common questions about eating on campus.

A wrap cut in half on a plate

Eating in residence

Residence cafeterias offer many choices, including crispy chicken wraps – a student favourite! Check out this week's menu!

Students sitting in Starbucks at the University of Waterloo

Eating on campus

Get meals or your caffeine fix at Starbuck's, Tim Hortons, Pita Pit, Pizza Pizza, Teriyaki Experience, Booster Juice, and more.