Study or live at a University College

If you're looking for a smaller, community-oriented residence or a supportive learning environment, one of Waterloo's four on-campus University Colleges may be for you!

What is a University College?

A University College is a smaller community that offers residence and academic programs within the larger University of Waterloo.

The University Colleges each have their own character and distinctive programs where you can get involved and feel supported while you live and learn. You'll study or live in a close-knit community while having access to all services and facilities at Waterloo, in addition to those at the University Colleges.

Why choose a University College?

  • They're located right on Waterloo's main campus.
  • Residences are available to all Waterloo students, regardless of your program.
  • All-you-can-eat meal plans (and chocolate milk on tap!).
  • Opportunities to engage in student life programming and become a student leader.
  • Smaller class sizes that provide opportunities to interact with both professors and classmates.
  • Friendly communities for you to call home with additional resources and support.

Study, live, or both!

You can

  • live at a University College without taking courses there,
  • take courses at one or more University Colleges without living in one, or
  • live at a University College and take courses at one or more University Colleges and the main Waterloo campus.

If you're going to be studying Honours Arts or Honours Arts and Business, you can choose Renison or St. Jerome's as your academic home base.

What makes each unique?

Conrad Grebel University College


  • Space for 140 students
  • Residence for first-year and upper-year students
  • A separate residence application is required to live at Grebel


Visit the Grebel website.

Renison University College


  • Space for 214 students
  • Living Learning Communities for Warrior varsity athletes, Social Development Studies, and Bridge to Academic Success in English


Visit the Renison website.

St. Jerome's University (SJU)


  • Space for 398 students
  • On-site gym and wellness studio


Visit the St. Jerome's website.

United College


  • Space for 316 students
  • Living Learning Communities for Faculty of Environment, French language, Human Rights, Indigenous students, and Women in Engineering


Visit the United website.


How do you apply to live at a University College?

Renison, St. Jerome's, and United are part of Waterloo's residence guarantee for first-year and transfer students. You'll be able to request to live in one of those University Colleges after you accept an offer of admission and submit a residence ranking form.

If you're interested in living at Conrad Grebel University College, you'll need to apply directly to residence at Grebel.

Want to learn more?

Check out the University College websites listed above or visit during a campus tour or open house.