Are you interested in applying to Queen's Commerce? Well one of my online students from last year Charlotte got in!! I got her to share her grade 12 experiences below :)

What were your marks in all of your grade 11 and 12 courses?

Grade 11:
English (ENG3U) – 93
Functions (MCR3U) - 90
Visual Arts - Photography (AWQ3M1) – 95
Financial Accounting (BAF3M) - 95
Introduction to Anthropology (HSP3U1) - 93
Biology (SBI3U1) - 95

Grade 12:
Intro to International Business (BBB4M) – 99
Business Leadership (BOH4M) - 96
English (ENG4U) – 90
Calculus and Vectors (MCV4U) - 96
Finance (IDC4U) - 96
Advanced Functions (MCV4U) - 95
Accounting (BAT4M) - 99

When did you receive your acceptance?

End of April

What subject(s) are you best at? Weakest at? Was it always like this? What are your favourite subjects?

My best subjects were any of the business courses. This is because my strengths are writing and public speaking, therefore working perfectly with the courses requirements of presentations and reports. My worst subjects (with the exception of biology) were sciences. I only took grade 11 biology because I have a good memory. In grade 9 and 10, science was my lowest mark, and that's just because I was not interested in it. My favorite subjects were all of my business courses.

Did you work during your grade 12 year? If so, how many hours per week? How did it affect your studying?

All through highschool I had a job at Loblaws. I worked on average, 10-15 hours a week. Sometimes I felt like working made it hard to keep up, however I always found time, and in the end it worked out. It makes you really optimize the time you spend in school.

What were your study habits like? Were they the same everyday?

In grade 12 I had 2 free periods (in both semesters) so I would usually spend one of those with friends and the other in the library (75mins each). This gave me a good headstart on my homework and assignments. I would normally get home around 3 and then spend an hour eating and relaxing. I would do homework until 8-9pm each night (depended on the amount of work). Then from 9pm on I would relax. This gave me enough time to get 8 hours of sleep every night and also complete my work without cramming. When it came to studying for tests, I would usually start 2-3 days beforehand and would almost always feel prepared going into it.

What extracurricular activities did you participate in? Did it affect your studying?

  • Captain of flag football team
  • Recreational soccer
  • Specialist High Skills Major (SHSM) Council
  • Yearbook photographer
  • Started a photography business with my friend

Overall my clubs did not affect my studying. My biggest commitment was flag football, however practices were in the morning which just meant I lost some sleep. The other clubs required a few hours of work each week, but nothing unmanageable.

Briefly describe your 3 closest friends (or the 3 people you most talked to and spent the most time with) during your grade 12 year. Did they have any affect on your results in grade 12?

Friend 1

  • Low 90’s average
  • Hard worker
  • Very involved at school
    • Best Buddies club president
    • Yearbook layout designer
    • Singer
  • Had a part time job (worked 20 hours a week)
  • Attending Western for nursing

Friend 2

  • Mid 90’s average
  • Super passionate about cars - got a job at Toyota
  • Very laid back about school however still got good grades
  • Attending George Brown for mechanical engineering

Friend 3

  • Parents were tough on him about his grades
  • Hard worker
  • Very interested in the sciences and computers
  • Low 90’s average
  • Attending York/Seneca for nursing

My friends definitely had an impact. We were all super motivated to get into a good school for our respective program and I feel like they pushed me to work harder.

What advice would you give to someone when they’re preparing for the supplementaries in the application process (interviews, forms, etc)? What mistakes did you feel you made in this process? How would you have prepared differently to avoid these mistakes?

Queens Commerce Prompt: List 5 awards, 5 extracurriculars. 1 prompt about an extracurricular of your choice, 1 prompt about a story that defines who you are and one prompt about what you wish was different about your highschool experience.

My biggest advice would be to start early. As soon as you know the questions begin planning. Personally, I wrote several drafts of each essay until I was happy with it. I would also make sure that you show them who you really are. Your extracurriculars don’t have to be the most impressive (i.e. president etc.), mine sure aren’t, but make sure they know what you're interested in. If that’s photography, make sure you show that in more ways than 1 (i.e. an award, an extracurricular and mention it in your essays).

Why did you choose Queen's Commerce? What are you looking to get out of the program during and after?

While Queen’s is one of, if not, the top business school in Canada, I chose it because of its amazing alumni connections and its amazing opportunities to get involved. The Smith Commerce Society is Canada’s largest undergraduate business society comprising over 55 conferences and committees. While Queen’s has no co-op program, the commerce society provides a comparable experience. Lastly, Queen’s university has such a tight knit community that is filled with spirit and tradition.

If you were able to go back to the day before Grade 12 started and give yourself advice, what would it be?

Just take a deep breath and know that everything will work out. University applications can be stressful, but just know that you’ve done everything you can, and that whatever happens happens. Not getting into your dream school does not mean you can’t be successful.