Look to Canada for Opportunities to Study Abroad

By Kahane, Audrey | The Record (Bergen County, NJ), March 17, 2012 | Go to article overview

Look to Canada for Opportunities to Study Abroad


Kahane, Audrey, The Record (Bergen County, NJ)


Spending a semester abroad has become very popular in recent years as students and employers recognize the value of international experience in a global economy. But for some students, a semester or year outside the United States just isn't enough. They are finding exciting opportunities just over the border in Canada, which welcomed more than 10,000 U.S. students in 2011.

Students are living in a foreign country and learning about another culture without having to travel very far or become fluent in a foreign language. In Vancouver last summer I met a young man from the U.S. who had just graduated from University of British Columbia. He felt he received an excellent education, and perhaps because his Asian studies major was in a smaller department, he found that classes were reasonably small. He had a study-abroad experience in China and loved living in Vancouver.

He also enjoyed the international student body at UBC. He did say that students who thrive at the school need to be fairly independent, as they will not get the kind of nurturing students often find at schools in the U.S. At UBC and other Canadian universities, students can get to know professors and work on research projects with them, but it may takes a little more effort.

The quality of life is great in Canada, and some of the most prestigious universities are located in exciting cities, including Montreal, Toronto and Vancouver. You will also find liberal arts colleges in scenic parts of the country. Canada has more than 90 universities and 150 colleges offering a variety of programs.

Canada has a number of world-ranked universities. While Canadian universities offer bachelor's degrees as well as graduate degrees, the colleges are more like our community colleges, with certificate and diploma programs. There are a number of resources to help you sort through the options, including MacLean's on Campus magazine, which has university rankings as well as student surveys, campus news and articles about student life.

The Association of Universities and Colleges of Canada has a website with profiles of each institution, and you can search for schools by program and location. …

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