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Trust Me, I'm an Engineer

Posted: Friday, November 13, 2015 - 10:04

With Science and Engineering Sunday just 2 days away, and since we broke down the Bachelor of Science programs for you last week, it is also necessary to highlight U of G’s engineering programs! Is there a better way to get your blood flowing for Sunday? We think not.  

Even Bill Nye, arguably the most influential scientist who ever lived (am I right?), sums it up beautifully for us:

“There is nothing I believe more strongly than getting young people interested in science and engineering, for a better tomorrow, for all humankind.”

Cue Bill Nye theme song.

Our Engineering degree is broken down into 7 distinct majors, each one with its own focus, but still incorporating and utilizing elements from a variety of engineering disciplines. And though they all have their own core, a common theme throughout is U of G’s emphasis on design, collaboration and community when creating solutions to current and relatable problems impacting the world.

Mechanical Engineering

Mechanical Engineering is the program that encompasses it all; any system that uses energy requires a mechanical engineer for its design and functionality. In this program, you will also designate an area of focus in 1 of 4 areas: energy, mechatronics, manufacturing or biomechanics. So, while you’ll be studying a very broad spectrum of engineering principles, you will be applying this to wherever your interest(s) lie. In essence, a Mechanical Engineering degree captures pieces of every engineering area (those programs listed below), but has a more ‘general’ focus than specifically ‘biomedical’ or ‘environmental’, for example. Though, you may end up in one of those fields upon graduation. Are you catching what I’m throwing out?

Biological vs. Biomedical Engineering

Biological Engineering brings together those Chemical, Mechanical, and Electrical engineering principles to understand the worlds’ most complex “machine”, a living organism. It is an interdisciplinary program, where you will analyze biological systems from food, to the environment, to pharmaceutical impact on humans. Your goal? Well, it could be to design technology that resembles the biology of living systems, or, to use engineering tools to create renewable bioenergy; the choice is yours.

Similar to Biological Engineering, Biomedical Engineering applies Chemical, Mechanical and Electrical aspects, but instead shifts its focus to the improvement of human health, specifically, in contrast to the the broader spectrum of all living things that is Biological Engineering. Innovation and design is applied to the health care industry (i.e. medical devices). This program is rooted in Leonardo Da Vinci’s quest to understand the human foot, to what he refers to as: “a masterpiece of engineering and a work of art.”

Environmental vs. Water Resource Engineering

Environmental engineers look at all environmental challenges impacting nature and its four elements: fire, water, air and earth. By enrolling in this program, you have a passion for everything ‘sustainability’, and seek to identify and prevent further degradation to our resources. Civil, Chemical and Mechanical Engineering will be applied to environmental concerns, with public health & safety in mind. You will save the world, one tree hug at a time. 

Though they love the world and the beauty it emulates, and may find other resources attractive, Water Resource Engineers are in a relationship with water. This major incorporates Environmental Engineering touchpoints, but specifically narrows in on creative solutions to protect groundwater, soil, wetlands, streams, lakes, rivers and oceans. Did you drink a glass of water today? You can thank a Water Resource Engineer for that…stay hydrated, kids!

Computing vs. Systems & Computing Engineering

Okay, two very different yet related programs. Let’s break them down.

Your Computer Engineer, let’s name him or her Erin, thrives off of modern computing systems; from supercomputers to cell phones, Erin designs the hardware and software components that makeup and run your computing device. They will further specify their exact area of emphasis deeper into the degree by either looking at electronics, microsystems, robotics (and AI), or software. Erin is the reason you can post that “throwback-Thursday”; #computerengineersknowwhatsup.

Austin, the Systems & Computing Engineer, looks at computational systems, software and hardware in a variety of devices, not just computers themselves. For example, Austin arrives home from work, pulls in the driveway, and uses a remote control to open his garage door. Guess what? He designed that remote’s microprocessor that automates the doors’ system, and eliminates the need for him/her to get out of the car, open the door manually, and then drive the car in. Austin: a creator of possibilities, ease of daily routine…and the robot that vacuums the house for you.

Bachelor of Engineering (in Computing or Systems & Computing) vs. Bachelor of Computing (in Computer Science or Software Engineering)

WHAT THE WHAT? Breathe friend, breathe. First, let’s distinguish between the two Bachelor of Computing degrees; Computer Science & Software Engineering. Christine, a Computer Science student, finds the theoretical aspects of computing so fascinating, specifically the code, algorithms, data structures and efficiency of devices. While her friend Dan who is studying Software Engineering, is more focused on the business side of software development. He emphasizes simplicity and intuitiveness when designing code and devices, is a team player and is your go-to guy when dealing with clients, public communications and managing engineering projects. Dan tells you what you need to do; Christine tells you how you can do it.

And to keep the difference between the two degrees (Computing and Engineering) very easy to understand; graduates from the Bachelor of Computing degree are the “brains” (develop programs, algorithms, theories), while Engineering graduates are the “skull” (design the devices, systems, hardware that encase the brains). Get it? Got it? Good.

Fun Fact Friday: the Engineering Building also just underwent a 50 million dollar expansion. Come and check it out for yourself on Sunday!

We know it’s all a bit much to take in! But, we hope this article helped you decide what program sessions you’ll want to attend at Science & Engineering Sunday (and hopefully apply for)! And, to relax you a bit, let’s cue the Bill Nye theme song again; because, that can never play too many times…

We Need to Talk...

Posted: Wednesday, November 11, 2015 - 13:28

Don’t worry, this isn’t one of those “it’s not you, it’s me” talks, it’s more of a, “here’s a key to my apartment” talk(s).

At U of G, we recognize the importance of communication when building strong relationships. So, throughout the entire application process, we will be hosting ‘chats’ for you to connect with admission & recruitment counsellors, and ask any (and all) questions you might have! You will chat and get the answers you’ve been searching for in real-time.

The first chat will be tomorrow, November 12 from 7:00pm-9:00pm EST.  ‘Chat Season’ will run from November until mid-May, to ensure we are not only helping you get needed information about campus life, residences, admission requirements and other general, UofG information, but that we are also with you throughout your decision-making process. This is your education! Making the right choice for you is what’s most important to us.

Please go to our Online Chat page to access the chat, and to see our full schedule of sessions (in case you can’t make it tomorrow!).

Jot down your questions, do some hand yoga to limber up your typing fingers and put a smile on – we’ll talk to you soon!


UofG is Working on Fixing the Temporary Service Disruption!

Posted: Friday, November 6, 2015 - 16:21

For the past few hours, the University of Guelph server has been down. The University is diligently working on fixing this issue!

If you are in the midst of registering for Fall Preview Day, and are unable to complete the process, please keep trying! Or, we will just welcome you with open arms on Sunday.

Ah, but what would we do without the Internet?

Science: Think Like a Proton & Stay Positive!

Posted: Friday, November 6, 2015 - 16:06

With Science & Engineering Sunday quickly approaching, we thought it was necessary to give you a little insight into the University of Guelph’s science programs. Because… “Science is simply common sense at its best” – Thomas Huxley.  

Altogether, there are 28 Bachelor of Science majors; these are further divided into the Physical & Biological Sciences.

Physical Sciences

Biological & Pharmaceutical Chemistry*
Biological & Medical Physics*
Chemical Physics*
Environmental Geoscience & Geomatics
Physical Science
Theoretical Physics

To keep it simple and general, the physical science programs will expand your knowledge about the universe as a whole. The programs do not dive into living organisms, but rather the nature, substances, energy, and matter surrounding the living organisms. Essentially, it allows you to take a stroll through the unknown. Physical Science is the foundation for understanding the Biological Sciences.

Fun Fact Friday: If you’re interested in the Physics stream, a first-year physics teacher by the name of Jason Thomas (aka Burnaby Q. Orbax) just broke orbax22 Guinness World Records! In October, Orbax and his ‘Monsters of Schlock’ sideshow traveled to Vancouver to attend the Pacific National Exhibition. The most notable of the 22 record breaking stunts was when he laid on a bed of nails, while 50 motorcyclists took turns jumping over him! The previous record was 31 motorcyclists, so he ‘nailed’ that one (pun absolutely intended). Though he may live a ‘double life’, he suggests that physics principles are everywhere, and applies many of the theories to his stunts. In reverse, he also demonstrates many physics-based theories in the classroom by performing some (much tamer) stunts for his students. So, even if you think Physics is not the major for you – come to Guelph & you may rethink this! Cruise to the full article on the UofG homepage for more details on his record breaking stunts! 

Biological Sciences

Animal Biology
Biological Science
Bio-Medical Science
Biomedical Toxicology*
Environmental Biology
Food Science*
Human Kinetics
Marine & Freshwater Biology
Mathematical Science
Molecular Biology & Genetics
Nutritional & Nutraceutical Sciences
Plant Science
Psychology: Brain & Cognition
Wild Life Biology & Conservation

Do you love life? Yes? Yeah? Ya? The Biological Sciences (aka ‘Life Sciences’) takes you to the realm of every living thing on our planet.

These majors are then categorized into:

1. Biological Science

  • Biological Science

2. Molecular & Cellular

  • Biochemistry
  • Microbiology
  • Molecular Biology & Genetics

3. Environmental

  • Biodiversity
  • Environmental Biology
  • Plant Science

4. Animal

  • Animal Biology
  • Marine & Freshwater Biology
  • Wildlife Biology & Conservation
  • Zoology

5. Human

  • Bio-Medical Science
  • Human Kinetics
  • Nutritional & Nutraceutical Sciences
  • Psychology: Brain & Cognition

So, as you can see, these programs study organisms smaller than what your naked eye can see, to those far beyond the size of your standard tape measure. If you’re looking into the ‘Human’ side of the Biological Sciences, check out the Bio-Medical Science or Human Kinetics program(s). U of G offers undergraduate students a very rare opportunity to take a human-cadaver dissection course in 3rd year (i.e. Human Anatomy). Throw away those mannequins, and get some hands-on experience with an actual human-body! U of G does it RIGHT.

OH and one more thing about the Biological Sciences. Do you want to help, play with and pet animals as a career? This stream is a very popular pre-requisite for Guelph’s reputable Veterinary program.

A key highlight of the entire Bachelor of Science stream is its flexibility. We understand selecting a major from this vast list, without much knowledge about what distinguishes each major within each area, can be a challenge. If you change your mind (which happens to the best of us!), the ability the switch your major after first year is SO EASY due to the common courses all first-year science students are required to take.  

Another component that we should mention is co-op! If you’re looking to gain some real-life insight into the world you’re studying, while building knowledge, networks and contacts for when you graduate, then co-op is for YOU. Those programs above with an asterisk(*) beside them are available in the co-op stream!

Visit the Programs of Study page to read up on each major individually and see which one suits what you’re looking for in your educational (and professional) career. OR, just come visit us at Science & Engineering Sunday. Here, you will find answers to all of your science-based questions, along with campus & building tours, residence tours, and the chance to meet faculty & students within your program(s) of interest.

See you there!

11 Things to Look For on Fall Preview Day

Posted: Wednesday, November 4, 2015 - 09:50

Are you still on the fence about attending Fall Preview Day this coming Sunday (November 8th)? Or, have you already registered and are antsy as to what you’ll get to see around campus that day? Well, below is a list of things you will get to experience that will either a) convince you to join us or b) get you that much more excited!

1. Hundreds of Volunteers

The one, reoccurring comment you hear about the University of Guelph is the campus’ feeling & sense of community. When you witness the amount of volunteers we have joining us on Sunday, you’ll begin to see this firsthand. Their enthusiasm, willingness to help and overall love for Guelph (and each other) will be something to make note of.

2. Tours, Tours & More Tours

Campus, building & residence tours will be happening throughout the day! You’ll get to experience ‘a day in the life of’ a true Gryphon.

3. Gryph N’ Grille

What’s that you say? A food truck? Yes, the University of Guelph has its own, official Food Truck! Parked in Branion Plaza, with local & fresh menu options that will make you drool…it’s no wonder our university has been ranked #1 in food for the past 10 years!

4. Old Jeremiah

Old Jeremiah, also known as the ‘Canon’, is a historic monument on campus that students take pride in decorating every night. What will it look like on Sunday? That will be a surprise to both you and us!

5. The Money Talk

Register for the 30-minute Admission & Finance-themed presentations happening in Rozanski throughout the day. It will answer all of your questions, and cater to your concerns, regarding funding your education! UofG believes in accessible education for all students.  

6. The Co-op Talk

Speaking of money, how do you feel about making some while completing your degree? And not only making some cash, but gaining crucial, and real-life experience within your field of study? UofG is a huge advocate for co-operative education & we encourage you to learn more about it!

7. Fun Stuff & Free Stuff

Well, this one speaks for itself. UofG swag coming your way!

8. Current Students & Professors

Cruise on down to Peter Clark Hall (in the basement of the University Center) for the Academic Resource Fair. Here, you will learn about your specific program of interest from those directly involved (students, professors, counsellors).

9. Summerlee Science Complex

Our Summerlee Science Complex is North America’s largest integrated science teaching & research facility – how cool is that? Be sure to pop in for a view, even if science isn’t your forte.

10. Residences (aka Your Crib)

Want to see where you could be resting your head at night? Drop in to the various residences open on Sunday and get to know your new ‘home away from home!

11. Mascots

Keep your eyes peeled for Gryph!  He just wants to be friends.

Enough of this ‘reading’, if you want to visualize some of these things even before Sunday – watch our YouTube video that captures everything on this list! Follow us on snapchat for other great videos, pictures & stories around campus!

Go to the Fall Preview Day event page to register. See you Sunday!

Up & Comings to Make Note Of!

Posted: Friday, October 30, 2015 - 09:51

Friends, what are you doing on Sunday, November 8? If your response is anything other than "attending Fall Preview Day at the University of Guelph!", then you need to stop, drop, and rework your calendar. It is a full day or exploring what UofG can offer you, and your academic career. Pencil us in, now! As an incentive, you might even spot some deer in the beautiful, fall-coloured Arboretum:+

3 deer surrounded by fall colored trees in the University of Guelph arboretum

To register, please go to the Fall Preview Day 2015 webpage. You can also take a peak at all of the activities and sessions that we have planned for you throughout the day!

In addition to this, the Chat Season is nearly upon us! Beginning in November, we will be hosting online chats for you join and discuss, in real time, with admission services staff, recruitment staff, current students, and program-experts. The first 'general' chat will take place on Thursday, November 10 from 7:00pm-9:00pm EST. This is your opportunity to get some answers to your pressing questions! We are here to help you, every step of the way.

Can't join us on November 10? Head on over to the chat page for the full schedule from November to May, and plan your 'chats' accordingly!

"Fall" in Love with the University of Guelph

Posted: Tuesday, October 27, 2015 - 13:38

We decided it was necessary to compile some of the beautiful photos taken around the University of Guelph campus this past month. Check out our spotify story below and breathe in some of the beauty that is Guelph.

Honey, What's an App?

Posted: Friday, October 23, 2015 - 11:36

Ah, a question the majority of you have undoubtedly had to answer at some point in your life, whether it was from your parents, aunts, uncles, grandparents or a random Generation X’er at the bus stop. In the era of these things we call cell phones, they just don’t get it. They know an ‘app’ as a delicious, pre-main course dish. And though those are tasty treats, let’s be real, today the word ‘app’ refers to a much larger part of our everyday lives.

So, because you are all app-enthusiasts, the Globe & Mail published an article outlining the 16 must-have apps for campus life! Whether you’ve just entered post-secondary studies or are in the process of applying, now’s the time to familiarize yourself with these – you’ll be the ‘app-boss’, that’s a serious skill.

1. Safewalk

Because UofG nails everything on the head, Safewalk is a Guelph-specific app that promotes campus-safety and comfort. If you’re not someone who enjoys walking alone (at night, or even in the daytime), you can contact someone and they will walk you home, to your car, or to your next destination on campus. Safety first kids!


Simply, this app allows you to post ideas and thoughts with people within a 5-mile radius of you (aka on campus!). You can peek at what’s happening around you, and always be up-to-date with the most ‘voted’ (popular) content. Yik Yak also filters content into specific categories so you can see what you ‘want’ to see. YAK away!


Songza creates playlists for any situation and mood. Feel like ripping the dance floor in half? There’s a playlist for that. Feel like curling up in a ball, and crying until your mom calls? There’s a playlist for that.

4. Facebook Messenger

Well, just another way Facebook helps you procrastinate.

5. MYFitnessPal

Because Guelph has been ranked has having the best campus food for yet another year, this app tracks calories, nutritional information and activity. One word…GAINZ.

6. Groupon

Couponing in the digital age. YOLO…and save money!

7. Outlook

It’s no surprise that your university email account will NEED to be checked multiple times a day. This app lets you do that in the palm of your hands!

8. Trivia Crack

Recently the most downloaded game in 2014, it sparks some friendly competition amongst you and your friends, and even people around the world. You have to keep that mind sharp, you know?

9. DropBox

Perfect for group work! Email accounts typically have a size limit when sending files. This will help you overcome that by storing large documents or presentations online, which can be shared with members. And, you can access the files anywhere!

10. Evernote

Keep all of your notes, thoughts, ideas and research in one workspace, and with you all of the time. On the bus and think of a thesis statement? Jot it down in Evernote and have it on your computer when you get home!

11. FaceTime

Because being homesick sucks, and sometimes, you just need to see a friends’ smile to get you through your day. Stop that texting thing and have a full-on conversation like the good ol’ days!


We are all guilty of it! But this app helps you stay on top of your deadlines, exams and readings throughout the semester. If you’re an organization fanatic, this one’s for you! And if you’re not… this one’s for you!

13. Goodreads

Sometimes, it’s just nice to read a book without definitions and academic lingo! Physical books may not always be in reach, but this app gives you some leisurely reading at your fingertips. It will recommend books based on interests, most popular amongst friends and those with top reviews.    

14. Quora

Stumped? Ask Quora a question and find your answer! Answers cover a range of topics, and are posted and edited by the community of users.

15. Slack

Face it - group work in university is inevitable. Not only that, but it’s inevitable in any career path you choose! With Slack, you can create chat forums or channels for a project, topic or a team. It keeps all discussions (and team mates) in one easily accessible place.

16. Starbucks

UofG has three on campus, making this app 110% necessary! Happy pumpkin-spice latte Friday!    

You can find the Globe & Mail’s article by going to their website. Students comment on each app and its purpose, so you can see why they recommend it, too.  

While we’re on the topic of apps, be sure to add ‘uofgadmission’ on Snapchat. Get snapping…or whatever you kids are calling it these days.

As Gryphons, We're Allowed to Brag.

Posted: Wednesday, October 21, 2015 - 13:48

As you are gearing up to apply to your top schools for Fall 2016, it is obvious that we want one of those schools to be the University of Guelph! SO, this is the perfect time to highlight just how GREAT we are, and hopefully persuade you to select Guelph from that drop-down menu. Let’s do it!

This article will highlight our rankings based on the QS Top Universities website. QS is the most widely read university comparison tool, which highlights more than 800 of the top universities in the world based on specific indicators: academic reputation, employer reputation, student-to-faculty ratio, citations per faculty, international faculty and international student ratio. In addition, they also break down these rankings into certain categories (i.e. faculty, program, region). 

Based on this, where does the University of Guelph sit, you ask? Well, we confidently hold the 20th spot in all of Canada, and happily live in the top 450 in the WORLD! More specifically, our Ontario Veterinary College is ranked as 4th in the world while our agricultural programs rank at a commendable 23rd.

In addition to this ranking system, QS also gives 1 to 5-star ratings based on criteria such as employability of graduates, sports & education facilities, community engagement, internationalization, teaching, research and innovation. All in all, the QS system evaluates schools against over 50 different indicators! These ratings allow students to get a better picture of a school’s qualities, which is where traditional rankings are limited. With this in mind, we’d like to highlight that the University of Guelph was given the highest rating – 5 STARS!

5 Star Ranking Graphic showing 5 stars with a description that University of Guelph also ranks in the top 450 in the world.

To see for yourself, head over to the QS Top Universities website.

As we in Admission Services live and breathe Guelph, these statistics come as no surprise. But, we encourage you to discover the University for yourself and hope you will end up calling it home, too. Some opportunities to explore why our school is regarded so highly are listed below:

  • Fall Preview Day: Sunday, November 8, 2015
  • Science & Engineering Sunday: Sunday, November 15, 2015

Don’t forget that we also have campus tours running Monday-Saturday throughout the semester!

Did we mention that UofG SERIOUSLY ROCKS? Well, it does.


Posted: Thursday, October 15, 2015 - 14:33

A few of you have been posting questions on social media regarding all of the Environmental program/degrees here at Guelph and what differentiates them. Therefore, we thought we’d give you a brief lowdown on each for some clarification. We hope that this will make the application process a little less confusing for you!

Degree: Bachelor of Science in Environmental Sciences


  • Ecology
  • Environment and Resource Management
  • Environmental Economics and Policy
  • Environmental Sciences

A degree in BSc. Environmental Sciences allows you to study the environment from a science perspective. Within it, you will balance required courses and restricted/choice electives in a variety of subjects (from science solutions to social/economic consequences), while also being given the opportunity to participate in research & study real-life and current environmental issues! Straight from the Environmental Sciences department, they noted:

  • Ecology students love the ‘nitty gritty’ lab & field work that teach them how elements of the environment interact with their surroundings
  • Environment and Resource Management students dive into GIS and Remote Sensing labs & field camps to gain technical skills in managing the biophysical environment
  • Environmental Economics and Policy students review resource & land economic techniques, law, and politics and apply them to the environment & real world problems
  • Environmental Sciences students develop a broad spectrum of environmental knowledge, from meteorology to forestry, and the underlying scientific processes occurring on Earth

Degree: Bachelor of Bio-Resource Management


  • Environmental Management
  • Equine Management

Unlike BSc. Environmental Sciences, Bachelor of Bio-Resource Management programs provide students with a diverse skillset in both science and business. Specifically, it is suggested that the degree is %70 sciences and %30 business. So while the science-based courses will be very similar to those in the Environmental Sciences degree, in BBRM you will also gain that environmental-business perspective.  

In the Equine Management major, you will simply learn every aspect of and surrounding a horse - from a horse’s well-being and the horse industry, to concerns about their impact on the environment (and vice versa)! As a graduate, you will have a firm foundation in business, biological sciences, and economic/social/environmental dimensions of everything equine! Are you a horse fanatic? Then this is the program for YOU!

Contrasting other environmental majors, in Environmental Management you will understand the entire environmental system, while also applying business related topics (i.e. accounting, economics, leadership, statistics) to ensure proper maintenance, regulation and remediation of that system.

Degree: Bachelor of Science


  • Environmental Biology
  • Biodiversity
  • Plant Science

Okay, now onto Science, Science, Science! Everybody’s favorite…right? Let us lay this out very nicely:

1. Plant Science is a plant-intensive program, and includes courses in structure, function, morphology and physiology of ALL plants, with a slight emphasis on botany and biotechnology.

2. Biodiversity provides students with a view on the current state of the earth and the diversity of every organism (plant, animal, microbes), while allowing you to focus on your own ‘niche’ (physiology, ecology or evolution).

  • FUN FACT: DNA Barcoding applied to real organisms was started at Guelph!

3. Environmental Biology courses look at the biological impacts of our activities on the natural/managed ecosystems (pollution, conservation, forestry etc.).

Degree: Bachelor of Arts


  • Environmental Governance

The arts! If science is not your friend, but you still want to understand elements of the environmental world, then hallelujah – this program is calling your name! Elements of the program include: the geographic, political and economic factors that shape the environment and its emerging societal concerns. You will also review decision making processes affecting the environment, and ultimately, touch on how to potentially solve many of the worlds’ environmental problems! You’ll become an environmental super-hero overnight (well, over 4 years… same thing).


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