Options on Tour – St. Francis Xavier University


Each year, Options Solutions team members visit many, many post-secondary institutions. These visits allow us to learn beyond what is readily available on the internet and in print materials. While on campus, we often meet with admission staff and Options alumni who attend the institution. We love learning about the nuance and vibe of each place and about all the hidden opportunities that exist there.

Our Options on Tour series highlights some of our recent adventures and shares them with you. We’ll feature what we saw, who we met, and what neat things/hidden nuggets we learned.

St. Francis Xavier University – Antigonish, Nova Scotia

The basics:

University population: 4500
Antigonish population: 5000

Featured academic programs:

  • First-year experiences: Humanities and Social Justice Colloquium
  • Nursing
  • Applied Forensic Psychology
  • Aquatic Resources
  • Engineering
  • Human Kinetics
  • Human Nutrition
  • Two Bachelor of Arts and Sciences degrees: Climate and Environment and Health

Most interesting things I learned:

  • There are nuns who live on campus.
  • There’s a barber shop on campus.
  • 93% student satisfaction rating.
  • It is possible to live on campus all four years.
  • There are over $1 million in scholarships and bursaries awarded to business students each year.
  • The Fr. Brewer Celtic Collection on the third level of the Angus L. Macdonald Library is the second largest Celtic library in North America after Harvard.
  • The X-ring is the third most recognized ring in the world.
  • It’s a $6 cab ride anywhere in Antigonish.
  • The new Brian Mulroney Institute of Government building is BEAUTIFUL.
  • It is a legacy school (many children of alumni attend) and has one of the most engaged alumni networks in Canada.
  • During Covid, St FX kept 75% of learning in-person.

Vibe words:

  • Spirited: students attend both the varsity athletic competitions and the House Hockey Cup with enthusiasm
  • Outdoorsy: Keppoch Mountain is 15 minutes down the road and campus is just minutes from the beach
  • Safe: small town, inclusive feels
  • Polite and engaged: so many students wanted to share their experiences with me

Thank you’s:

  • Brennah Agnew (who met me the day AFTER breaking her wrist) was such a fun tour guide.
  • Fiona and Roger O’Callaghan, siblings and Options’ alumni

Stay tuned to our Admissions category for all our upcoming Options on Tour posts!

We help you navigate the complex post-secondary selection process in Canada, the United States, the UK and abroad.

We construct progressive action plans for the future, based on each student’s individual strengths, values, and interests.