If you’re still taking your first steps along Ryerson’s Gould Street, we’ve whipped up a little guide to make our large campus less overwhelming. There are a few gems — some hidden, some in plain sight — that every student needs to know in order to survive the school year. You can thank us later.
Best place on campus for a caffeine fix: Balzac’s Coffee Roasters
The secret to surviving university is to be heavily caffeinated. Balzac’s Coffee Roasters is known for its strong coffee. It is a local favourite because it uses fair-trade organic coffee, sugar and cocoa.
If you’re a coffee snob, know that Balzac’s micro-roasts high quality Arabica beans. The baristas can craft anything from a killer cup of a coffee to a heavenly chai tea latte.
At the heart of the campus on Gould and Bond Streets, Balzac’s is a breeding ground for student mingling and intellectual conversation. Whether you need a bustling place to study or a just a comfy seat for a coffee break, Balzac’s may soon be part of your daily routine.
Best breakfast: Oakham Café
The perfect pick-me-up: a cheap, hearty, greasy breakfast — the Student Loan Special is a legacy at Ryerson. It has helped many students survive their 8 a.m. classes — or 8 a.m. hangovers.
Oakham Café has tweaked its signature deal this year; due to high demand, it now serves the special for only three hours starting 8 a.m. Sink your teeth into two eggs, any style, with your choice of bacon, sausage or halal chicken strips, plus potatoes and toast. At $4.99, it’s the best bang for your buck when it comes to campus breakfast.
The café is in the Student Campus Centre, right in the heart of campus on Gould Street. This building will soon become your best friend.
We’ll get to that.
Best place to nap: Student Campus Centre
After breakfast, you might be a little sleepy. Why not take a nap? Just head around the corner. The Student Campus Centre on 55 Gould St. has couches on three different levels — in the basement, the main floor and the second floor.
Don’t feel guilty about napping at the SCC — it’s a well-known student sleeping spot.
Our secret formula: take four couches and push them together to form your own fortress in order to achieve the ideal nap. If you have already started pulling all-nighters then don’t forget to come equipped with a blanket or a pillow. Obviously, your best bet and the final equation for an ideal nap is to bring a snuggie — the fuzzy blanket-with-arms.
Cheapest place to buy books: Used Book Room
If you head to the Used Book Room in the Student Campus Centre, you can save a month’s worth of rent, groceries or even (dare we say it) drinking money. University is all about prioritizing, right?
The Used Book Room is student-owned and operated, and boasts a huge selection all within a small basement corner. You can also find course materials and supplies. The staff will not re-sell anything unless it’s in good condition.
The best part of the Used Book Room is that it’s a one-stop shop. You can sell your course materials there too, for up to 80 per cent of the retail price. What else would you do with the The Norton Anthology of Poetry?
Best place for a drink: the Ram in the Rye
We saved the best for last.
A huge part of student life at Ryerson is the on-campus pub, the Ram in the Rye — an after-class watering hole where students go to unwind, watch a sports game or meet their Tinder matches.
The massive space includes a huge outdoor patio, pool tables and TVs. The Ram even hosts a karaoke night. It has a standard bar menu, but people mostly flock for the cheap drinks.
The Ram is located at the corner of Church and Gould streets.
Bottles: starting at $4.25
The basics: $4.50