Carly - University of British Columbia

Bachelor of Exercise and Sports Science
Semester 1, 2018

Academic experience

On exchange I took 5 courses which was the equivalent to a full time study load at UQ. All of my courses were 3rd and 4th year Kinesiology subjects. I studied Neuroanatomy, Biomechanics, Sports injuries, Health promotion and Leisure, sport and popular culture. Enrolling in subjects at UBC as an exchange student was a pretty painless experience for me. I submitted my subject preferences online and I was enrolled in all the subjects I needed to get credit back home without drama. Being a top 5 school for Sports Science, the lecturers at UBC were all extremely knowledgeable. The lecturing style and class size was also very similar to that of UQ.

Personal experience

As well as gaining the independence and confidence which comes along with living out of home, I also got to meet so many new people who I never would have met otherwise. It was so exciting to meet people from all around the world. Exchange also helped me become much better at solving problems and managing stress on my own.

Accommodation

I lived in the on campus residence Fairview Crescent. Fairview was filled mostly with other exchange students which made it easier to meet other students who wanted to do similar things like travelling and exploring Vancouver. I was in a 6 person apartment, and although living with 5 other people was crowded at times I got to meet and live with girls who would become some of my closest friends. Living and being great friends with my roommates also helps make Vancouver feel more like home. Fairview also held regular events which you could go to to meet other people.

Costs

For Fairview Crescent the rent was payed before the semester began which was approximately just under $4000 for the semester. I spent around $70 a week on food and another $20-$50 for activities and going out each week. For activities like skiing and snowboarding which were extremely popular but expensive you would probably spend a bit more. Conveniently UBC students get a compass card which allows you to travel free on public transport in Vancouver. Another important thing to remember in Canada is that the prices don't usually include tipping or tax, so it usually ends up being more expensive.

Professional Development

Not only did exchange really help build my independence, but I also got the opportunity to work alongside some amazing sports science researchers and educators. As well as exchange looking great on a resume, I now have references from health professionals and educators on the other side of the world.

Highlight

One of the highlights of my exchange was the travelling I got to do at the end of the semester to San Fransisco and Hawaii with the friends I made during the exchange. Another highlight would be being shown around the prettiest places in Vancouver by a local friend I made in class. Being shown around by someone who was from Vancouver meant that I got to see all the hidden gems.

Top tips

My advice would be to force yourself to go out of your comfort zone a little. Exchange is filled with lots of new experiences and the things I remember most from my exchange were the things I was hesitant to try. Another thing would be to make sure you don't just stay on the UBC campus and forget to explore the city while you're there. It can be easy to get into the routine of just staying on campus but there are so many great things to see in and around Vancouver.