Jenna - University of British Columbia

B Environmental Science (Honours)
Semester 2, 2022


I have always wanted to travel, this exchange experience provided the opportunity to do so while allowing me to continue completing my degree.

Personal development

I have gained so many friends form many different places across the world and with that been able to learn about many different cultures and languages. Exploring Canada and the culture and history it holds has also been so interesting with new stories and history from every person you speak to. I have been able to gain confidence in myself and my ability to be on my own when I need to be, as well as problem solve without the help of my network back home.

Academic development

My class assessment were much more spread out across the semester, meaning there was less weight and pressure placed on the final exam. I believe there was a similar workload between the two universities, but spread differently across the semester.  I enjoyed being able to take classes that linked some of my existing knowledge with new knowledge specific to Canada. I did find some classes challenging, but with a bit of extra time, I was able to pass everything I needed to.

Professional development

Some of the classes I took focussed a lot more on being able to present the knowledge we learnt from the class. We had to create video presentations and speak to our peers about information we collected. I believe these are valuable skills for future employability.


I chose to limit my food expenses by cooking most of my meals instead of eating out, this saved me a lot of money. My highest expense was likely my accommodation, however it was still reasonable for the location and time I was there. Another high expense would be travel, as I went on a few trips outside of Vancouver, however, I had budgeted for this as I knew I would want to explore more of Canada. While it is important to be mindful of the money you spend, it is also important to enjoy your exchange and some of the adventures it offers.


The funding I received allowed me to worry less about some of the smaller everyday living costs, and provided the opportunity for me to experience other fun activities and adventures I may not have been able to afford without the extra funding.


I was able to receive on campus accommodation in a 4 person apartment with my own room. I loved this accommodation because it was within walking distance of all my classes and had a sense of community with the surrounding exchange students in neighbouring apartments. I would recommend, if possible, housing close to campus as it makes morning treks to class much easier and quicker, especially if it's snowing.


Vancouver has some of the most beautiful scenery, with oceans and mountains both visible from the UBC campus. I really enjoyed hiking up the mountains in the warmer months and once it got colder, the snow on the mountains made for some fun snow fights.

Advice/Top tips

When choosing an exchange university, focus on activities and sights of the country and area, not just the university. You will spend just as much, if not more time exploring outside of the university.