When it comes to student satisfaction, Brock is in the top four Canadian comprehensive universities, according to the latest annual Maclean’s University Rankings.
And for mental health supports that help students cope with stress, Brock again this year was No. 1 among Canada’s comprehensive universities.
In the survey, students were queried on different aspects of their institutions. In the comprehensive category, Brock ranked fourth nationally for academic advising staff and for residence life; fifth for administrative staff, for student life staff and for extracurricular activities; and sixth for course instructors and for experiential learning.
Maclean’s bases its rankings on data collected from universities, as well as from more than 18,000 students across the nation who complete online surveys.
Brock President Gervan Fearon said the ranking is a powerful statement by students at a time when the University is experiencing record growth, rising academic admission averages and a surge in applicants who list Brock as their first-choice university.
“At Brock, our students are getting excellent academic programs in an environment that focuses on their success and well-being,” said Fearon.
“We are pleased to see students telling us that we’re getting it right by putting the student experience first, and by paying strong attention to student mental health. As we make strides to expand areas of research and advance our national reputation, we intend to continue our efforts in ensuring that our students celebrate Brock as one of the top student-centred universities in Canada.”
Anna Lathrop, Vice-Provost for Teaching, Learning and Student Success, said the ranking is a reflection of Brock’s Student Wellness and Accessibility team, who developed and implemented the mental health initiatives.
“We focus on steps that prevent mental health issues for our students,” said Lathrop, “but the most important prevention strategy is demonstrating that we are a caring university community in the first place.”
Lathrop said initiatives include:
- Brock has developed a workshop that explains anxiety and provides students with strategies to manage it, especially around exam time. Some 1,400 students have participated so far, and we also work with instructors to bring this wellness skill-building workshop into the classroom.
- A panel of undergraduate and graduate students advises Student Wellness and Accessibility Centre on everything from hours of operation to what kinds of communication work best with students.
- Brock partners with agencies like Community Addiction Services of Niagara and the CMHA, so that mental health initiatives are supported by a larger system that extends beyond campus. Among other benefits, this means more counselling is available to students, especially during the period leading up to exams which is a particularly stressful time for students.