REVIEW OF Rosthern Junior College High School BY Alum, Dayna Goerzen
- Date of Review
October 02, 2018
Gr. 11 - 12
- University (major)
University of Saskatchewan
(5) Overall Experience
Going to RJC was amazing, the best choice I made. I remember loving getting to live with my friends and building the strongest sense of community I’ve ever had. Living in the dorms was really fun and I made lifelong friendships. My grades at school also went up at least 10% while at RJC because the teachers actually care about you, how you do, and how you learn best. I also was able to study with peers in the dorms which helped a lot. The designated time each night for homework helped me to actually focus for a bit before going and having fun again. I also did better in sports, as well as in choir/musicals, because the teams are great and again they actually care about you doing well! The school prepared me for life in more practical ways than other schools would have.
(5) School Leadership
The teachers and other leadership genuinely care about your wellbeing and how you’re doing. They go the extra mile for students even though they don’t have to. I struggled in math but with extra help (and treats) from the teacher, I was able to pass with flying colours! When I was sick, the deans made sure I was okay and the office administrator drove me to the doctor since my parents were far away. The teachers help you with assignments and how to succeed.
The students respect the teachers because the teachers respect you. The relationship is more informal, you call them by their first names, which is great and makes them less intimidating and more relatable. They are your friend as well as your authority, so people respect them a lot. If you need help there will be help from any one of them. I got a quality education, the same as any other Saskatchewan school curriculum-wise, except with better, more one-on-one, teaching. My grades increased significantly from my public school to RJC because of the extra encouragement and help. I felt prepared for university or anything I wanted to pursue. My math teacher in particular helped me get high grades and a better understanding of pre-calculus and calculus, making me realize I could do it. All teachers made me like school again.
The school has quality teachers, especially in math and the sciences. The science teachers were able to make me like science again, and I learned a lot more in English and history than I did in public school because it was taught differently, with a more human touch. I wouldn't have been able to take calculus in public school, but I did at RJC because they made it doable for those that struggled with math. The humanities are excellent at RJC, with many options like art class, concert choir, audition choir, musicals and theatre arts, and more. Students were still competitive if they wanted to be, or others just wanted to graduate which everyone did. I felt appropriately challenged and supported academically, absolutely. Learning is a priority, and they help you accomplish that.
There are a ton of extracurricular activity options at RJC, for every type of interest. There are competitive sports teams that are also lots of fun; some for people that want to succeed and others for just having fun. There are many choir opportunities (concert choir for everyone, an audition choir that tours, men's choir and women's choir) as well as theatre arts (yearly musicals that always draw a big crowd, theatre arts classes, winter theatres, etc.). There are dorm-events too such as Sam and Sadie Hawkins, girls/guys nights out each month, Christmas banquet, and more. You can join SRC (student representative council) or DC (dorm council) to plan some. There are various clubs like run club, a workout room, and more that change with the students interests. The students are encouraged to participate in as many as they want, but usually the students almost all want to do as many as possible anyways because that's the RJC spirit. RJC students are known to be very well-rounded individuals because of all the opportunities they're given.
The student body size is smaller which is awesome, having around 70-80 (give or take) students from grades 10-12. My grad class was smaller as well, which made for really close friendships and a great sense of community. It helped too that then we all helped each other with academics as well as life stuff. There is still a range of students that attend RJC. There are those that it's family tradition to attend, those that are super excited for everything, those that just want to lay low and get through high school, those that like gaming, those that like sports or theatre and more. Everyone can find something they like at RJC. The "typical" student though would be willing to try new things, because that's a huge part of first off moving into dorms for school as well as the spirit of how RJC does things (there's lots of opportunities to do new things). Mostly everyone participates in the fun events because that's the 'norm'. Most students are Christian or were at least willing to learn about Christianity, but you don't have to be Christian to attend RJC or even to fit in. Everyone is welcome! Most students got along with mostly everyone (but of course there are conflicts here and there). There's a wide range of ethnicities that attend RJC too which is great.
(5) School Life
I absolutely loved going here. I chose to go to RJC, and had a great time. Student life is filled with fun and memory making. I was bored and didn't have much of a social life before RJC. I loved having roommates in the dorms and hanging out with my friends all the time. Other students also were generally very happy here too. Life has it's ups and downs but that's what the community is for. The deans in the dorms take great care of you, and you also learn a lot of independence, which prepared me for the real world. I loved that the teachers cared about me and my success enough to help me get there. I loved that I could study with my peers to do better in my classes. I loved the chances I got at fun and extracurricular activities. Overall, it was the best decision I ever made.
The alumni community is super supportive and generous for the school. Once you leave RJC, you aren't just 'done' - lots of alumni come back to support the school and the community lives on after you graduate. I especially love alumni sports tournaments and choirs, where you come back and meet up with old classmates and have a weekend of fun again. Even if you don't talk all the time with your whole class or people you went to school with, when reunited you can pick up where you left off easily because that's the type of people RJC creates. The fundraisers always draw a big crowd (like Guy's & Pies, or the year-end musicals) of support for all those that RJC has influenced. RJC becomes a part of your identity.
(5) School Location
Rosthern is a great town for RJC to be in, plus it's not too far away from Saskatoon, or even Prince Albert, for anyone wanting to go to the city on weekends or to go home for holidays. Rosthern has a grocery store and a Subway, as well as a nearby gas station that many students go to for a chips and pop run. There is a public school in Rosthern that we play against or with in sports too. The people in Rosthern are very friendly, and it has a sweet small town feel. RJC's campus is beautiful too and big so students can wander around it, but it never felt like a secluded island.
I found the process of applying to RJC very easy and not too stressful. I filled out information on academics as well as personal interests so that they can pair you up with a good fit for a roommate. I filled out the classes I thought I needed, and once I got to registration day in September, they helped me decide if I made the right choices. You can also ask earlier if you want to, by calling or sending an email, no problem. They help you take the classes you'll need for the end goal you want, and even encourage you to push yourself a little but never forcefully. The school worked with me to make sure I knew what to expect going into RJC, and especially now they have a lot of resources online too.
(5) University placement and counselling
You can talk to any of the teachers or leadership staff to get advice for school. They also brought in or sent us out to schools so we could see what's out there and get a sense of what we want. I never thought I could do university until RJC, because they helped me realize I can succeed if I try. They influenced my choice to go. Others were encouraged to follow their goals elsewhere, depending what they needed and wanted for their life goals. Help was available. If you needed help applying or needed a reference you could get it. There isn't a specific university counselling program, but I found I was still helped to apply places in time, and I feel I made the right decisions.