In the winter semester 2016/2017 we completed our semester abroad in Vancouver, Canada. In our International Information Management course, a stay abroad is planned for the 5th semester, and the University of Hildesheim has a number of partner universities in various European cities for this purpose. Since we wanted to spend our semester abroad in Canada, after doing our own research we came across the organization MicroEDU and then decided quite quickly on Capilano University in Vancouver. The application process was quite lengthy, as there were some arrangements regarding the choice of course, but also, for example, a Language certificate were necessary. In any case, it was a great help that the organization was always able to answer our questions about the application quickly and also forwarded the application documents to the university in Canada. The semester ran from the beginning of September to the end of December. A selection of courses is offered for international students, from which a minimum of three and a maximum of four courses are taken.
The workload per course is comparatively greater than I know it from my university in Germany, but I found the level of requirements to be a bit easier. The courses with a maximum of 30 students are also quite small and several homework assignments, projects and lectures spread over the semester are common. Capilano University is located in North Vancouver. In general, it can be said that Vancouver is a really big city, which is why the distances are very long. During my stay, I lived in a shared flat in East Vancouver, which offered me good connections to the city and an approximately one-hour drive to the university. Through the courses, but also some events for the international students organized by the university,I quickly made contact with other students. (Ann-Cathrin) [Report was written by two students, dR]
I decided not to take the fourth course because of the relatively high costs. I took “Consumer Behavior”, “Cross Cultural Business” and “Introduction to Communication Studies”. I enjoyed all three courses. “Consumer Behavior” and “Cross Cultural Business” both took place once a week in the late evening. “Introduction to Cummunication Studies” took place twice at noon. So I had a lot of free time during the week, but since the workload is higher than in Germany, I also had to do a lot for the university. Nevertheless, there was enough time to explore the city. Since the university is a bit out of the way, you have the choice to look for a room near the city or near the university. I looked for a room in advance through “Airbnb” and was very satisfied with my room. I lived with two Canadians and one Australian. The apartment was in East Vancouver, which I found ideal because of the location. I was in downtown Vancouver within 15 minutes. However, it took me at least 45 minutes to get to university. (Paula)
The tuition fees are higher in Canada for international students, as they would be for the locals. The organization, MicroEDU.com does not charge additional fees. Nevertheless, we paid about 4,000 euros in tuition fees, which included a semester ticket, which allowed us as many trips as we wanted by bus, train and ferry. The tuition fees are calculated based on the number of courses taken. So someone who takes 4 courses pays more than someone who only takes 3 courses. Since there is no accommodation available on campus for the students of Capilano University, an additional room has to be paid for. Also the house prices and other living expenses are higher than in Germany. In addition, the cost of the textbooks should not be underestimated.
According to iamaccepted, Vancouver is a very diverse city that has a lot to offer and I really liked it. Downtown and especially the lovely Gastown district offer great restaurants, cafes and bars. Stanley Park is just as beautiful, a huge park right on the water with many beaches and walking paths. North Vancouver, which can also be reached directly by ferry from downtown, has a few great corners that you should definitely see. For example, you have a great view of the Vancouver skyline from Lonsdale Quay or you can go on short hikes in Deep Cove, a small town with a picturesque bay. You can also go skiing in North Vancouver from around November. As a student, you even get some discounts on lift tickets.
Vancouver is the ideal starting point for trips to Vancouver Island or the Rocky Mountains. A day trip to Victoria (Vancouver Island) is worthwhile, but you should plan a few days for a tour of the Rockies. You can also be in the USA within a very short time. We rented a car with other students and drove it to Portland, Seattle and the outlet center on the US border. In addition, Whistler is open to skiing for most of the year. With a ski bus direct from Vancouver, Whistler can be reached within one to two hours. Capilano University offers a discounted season pass for students.