“Obviously [with] getting married it’s been even bigger coming back to campus. It’s weird to go home every night and not have a house full of guys,” said Peter Frielink, a 2023 Redeemer grad who has returned as an Education student.
“I graduated in May which was exciting. I [also] got in at Laurier and Lakehead for teacher’s college, and it was a big decision to return to Redeemer. There was a big tuition jump for sure–nearly double–but I thought Redeemer would be a good option to come back to as it will prepare me well for teaching in both the public and Christian school systems.”
When asked about coming back to Redeemer after a four-year B.A., Peter added, “A big part of coming back to Redeemer was the professors–coming back to campus and developing relationships with my professors after only two days of classes is awesome.
“The Education program takes such a different approach to university than I’m used to; it’s so different from my B.A. Profs aren’t as concerned with the ‘right’ answer, but more about what you think, your opinion, and practicality. There isn’t necessarily a right or wrong answer, but a lot of reflection instead. There’s been a big change from the academic focus in my B.A. as a history honours and politics student.
“Socially, I feel very comfortable–lots of my friends are back in the program and living in the area so I feel very at ease socially.”
Peter got married to his girlfriend of five years in August in Barrie, Ontario. “Obviously with getting married, it’s been even bigger coming back to campus. It’s weird to come back home every night and not have a house full of guys. I’ve always had a significant other throughout university so being married hasn’t changed my social experience here at all. It’s changed my ability to do things in the evening, including extracurriculars and intramurals.
“Ultimately, I stepped down from the role as intramural coordinator here on campus because of the distance of my commute to and from campus, and given the fact that I am married–it just isn’t as feasible as it was before. I have quite the commute to campus, about a 25-30 minute bike ride if I am really hauling it, but I don’t think most people would bike. Bussing is an option too.”
Being in his fifth year at Redeemer, Peter has seen many changes on campus. He’s highlighted some differences he’s noticed over the last half-decade: “What has stuck out to me most through these five years is the amount of care that the university has for its students. The pandemic was a very dark period for myself and many others. Redeemer did everything it could to make the student experience beneficial while also following all public health guidelines and heavy investments in online education. We had the most in-person classes throughout the pandemic of any school I’m familiar with, secondary and primary schools included. Balancing the load between student life and the student experience was massive and should be recognized.
“The school has shown signs of growth in things that matter. Sure, there are decisions made that students don’t like but there are plenty of investments that also show that Redeemer cares for student life here on campus. 21Five is a key example of that – it’s improved drastically and students appreciate it. Kristel has done a great job of ensuring programs get their books.
“For EDU 414 for example, the publisher for the textbook went out of business. Kristel contacted the author of the textbook, who happened to have extra textbooks and had them sent to the university.
“The Charis Center has [also] been a perfect example of that; the walls may be thin and the washing machines may be faulty, but the combination of a place to live and a place to study supports the long-term growth and sustainability of the university by providing a place to live, laugh, and learn (haha).”