Rohan - Queen's University

B. Engineering
Semester 2, 2017

Academic experience

The subjects I took were: Hydrogeology, Advanced Rock Mechanics, Rock Fragmentation. It was great to take courses under a different system, Queen's University professors focused their courses in a very personal way. Their lectures were rarely focused on a set of lecture slides and were instead based largely on personal experiences that were set around the key fundamentals of the course. Following that, having no recorded lectures was also a change.

Personal experience

Queen's made it easy to make friends with other exchange students with orientations from day 1 and living arrangements were suited to keep exchange students together where possible. It was great to explore Canada with other international students and learn how things differed from their home countries. Going on exchange certainly helps with your independence and reaching out of your comfort zone, it's a great way to do some travel and expand your friendship network.

Accommodation

Everyone at Queen's lives within a 2-3km radius of the campus which is a great perk for exchange students (especially when it gets cold). It makes getting around easy and the town is student friendly and focused.

Budget

Generally, living costs are cheaper than Australia. Trips away can also be done on the cheap when a large number of exchange students are involved, splitting accommodation and rental cars saves a lot on costs. It's great to budget for around $7000-$9000 so you can make the most of the weekends and explore Canada, though cheaper budgets can be achieved if suited.

Professional development and employability

The professional development you gain from exchange piggybacks off the personal development (making friends & networking, stepping outside your comfort zone, independence). All these things can be attributed to your professional attributes, the general life experience of establishing yourself in another culture for a short period of time is a great eye opener. Queens offered a lot of seminars for my industry which I was able to take advantage of.

Highlight

rockies, North American sports and last but not least Queen's University events and school spirit were a weekly highlight.

Top tips

  • Give everything a shot
  • Sign up to events you may not do at home
  • Budget as much as you can so you have the freedom to travel and participate in things and remember there is a lot of other exchange students in the same position as yourself.