Mastering the Application Process to Pursue My Dream Education
Queen’s University in Kingston, Ontario, Canada is a well established university in Canada, known for its engineering and business programs. Smaller than most universities, Queen’s is home to just over 20,000 students, compared to the University of Toronto which is Canada’s largest university and home to over 70,000 students. Due to this, and the outstanding programs, courses and professors the university offers, the acceptance rate to Queen’s is much lower than other universities in Canada, and educational consultants will tell you that the minimum grades required for acceptance are typically higher than 90%.
Getting into Queen’s University was my dream, due to the prominence the university holds, the small class sizes, and close-knit university campus that felt like home. When starting my application journey, the first thing I did was open up an application in the online Ontario Universities' Application Centre (OUAC). You should know that when applying to an undergraduate university program in the province of Ontario (this includes Queen’s University, University of Toronto, University of Waterloo, and the University of Ottawa amongst others), all applications are submitted through this online platform for both domestic and international students. Within this online system you can submit multiple applications to different programs at the same university or other universities in Ontario.
Once I began my application process, I discovered there were many requirements I needed to complete before the application due date of mid January (to begin my program in September of the same year). The application required that I provide details of my academic background (course history and transcripts), indicate the program and university I was submitting my application for, submit a Language Proficiency Test, and write a Supplementary Essay. Writing the Supplementary Essay is a requirement only for Queen’s University, however many other Ontario universities have similar essay requirements. The one good news is Ontario universities typically do not require SATs to get in, however you do have to demonstrate very high grades and proficiency within your application.
I planned on applying to the Faculty of Engineering which is the hardest program to get into at Queen’s. I had above 90% in all my math and science classes, however my english grades were in the low 80% 's. My average grade was just above what was required to get in, but I knew I needed my Supplementary Essay to stand out to the university admissions team to guarantee my spot. I have never been very good at writing essays, so I promptly sought out an academic tutoring service which offered admissions counselling. The admissions consultant I worked with told me that Queen’s puts a lot of importance on the Supplementary Essay, so they helped me with my essay, as well as the entire application process.
Once my application was submitted, I continued to work hard in high school at the recommendation of my tutor as I had to submit my final high school grades to the university before my spot was guaranteed. I found out in the spring that I had been accepted into the Engineering program at Queen’s University and I would be living in Kingston in September. It was a dream come true! I thoroughly enjoyed all my time at Queen’s in Kingston, and I would do it all over again if I could.