Antigonish, Nova Scotia, Canada

StFX welcomes nearly 1,500 to second annual Open House

October 13th, 2018
StFX President Dr. Kent MacDonald welcomes all to StFX's second annual Open House

StFX welcomed over 600 prospective new students and their families to campus, a total of nearly 1,500 people, on Saturday, Oct. 13 during its second annual Open House, a day designed to let high school students see firsthand what life is like as a StFX student and to discover all that the university offers.

For high school students, the full day of activities was a great chance to attend academic information sessions, to talk with faculty and staff, visit a student services showcase, tour campus, and enjoy lunch.  

“I immediately fell in love with the place,” says high school student Olivia Brownell of Sackville, NB who wants to go into nursing and is interested in health studies. 

“I’m very excited. I’ve never been so excited to see a school before. I first heard about StFX and its nursing program in Grade 9,” says Ms. Brownell who has already been accepted into StFX’s Bachelor of Arts and Science in Health and has applied to StFX’s Rankin School of Nursing. 

Ms. Brownell says she got up at 6 a.m. to make the trip to Antigonish and is glad to have the opportunity to visit campus. 

“I like seeing things before I make a decision…I feel I have a connection,” she says.

“I love it here. It’s welcoming, kind of like a family,” echoed Jacob MacDonald of Sydney, NS, who also got up before 6 a.m. without complaint to travel to StFX, where he learned he was accepted in the business program. 

He was visiting with parents Melissa and Gerald, a StFX graduate of 1983.

Anna McCormick of Bedford, NS, and Maddy MacDonald of Hammonds Plains, NS, visiting with their mothers Sarah McCormick and Pam MacDonald, said the open house was a great opportunity to see what options exist and to learn more about the academic programs offered at StFX. 

It was a theme echoed by StFX Academic Vice-President & Provost Dr. Kevin Wamsley in opening remarks. 

“This is your day to explore StFX and see if StFX is right for you. This is your day to ask a lot of questions,” Dr. Wamsley said.  

StFX President Dr. Kent MacDonald welcomed all to campus and spoke about what he thinks makes StFX special.

“The reason StFX is different is we are a national university looking to engage students in a small, residential setting,” Dr. MacDonald said.

He said StFX is looking for academically focused, socially engaged students. 

He encouraged prospective students when they come to university not to simply think of themselves as high school graduates, but as university students “where it is cool to be intellectually curious.”

Along with this academic focus, he says StFX wants students who are socially engaged, who have the ability to see beyond themselves and care about what’s going on in the world around them. 

“This is a university for 166 years has produced social activists.”

He invited everyone to explore the campus – visiting classrooms and labs, attending student sessions and learning more about StFX.  

The day started off with early-bird campus tours and included a Student Services Showcase so visiting students and their families could learn about the many services to support students in their personal and academic goals. 

After a BBQ lunch, the afternoon included a chance for attendees to meet with faculty and program chairs to ask questions and explore the academic programs offered at StFX. 

Student guides again helped visitors explore campus during the afternoon via guided tours including visits to the residences, academic spaces and student life buildings.    

Students who applied online before Oct. 5 also had the chance to receive a decision on their application at the open house. 

Anyone who missed the open house but would like to arrange a personalized campus tour are invited to do so any time by contacting the Visitor Centre by email at or by phone 902-867-4964. 


Start Your Journey