6 things you should do in your first month in Toronto

By Christevie Ngoma, University of Toronto, Canada

After crying on the plane about leaving my friends and family, I felt a wave of excitement because I realised after weeks of planning a personal statement to apply for the IPO, months of waiting for an answer. I finally made it to Toronto.

The past 3 weeks have been so busy, who would’ve thought that moving to a new country would be so eventful? This blog has tips on what to do and where in your first month as an exchange student!

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The big T-city

(Otherwise known, by a girl in my lecture, as the “Wannabe New York”. either way, no complaints.)

by Olivia Bucherer-Ezer, University of Toronto, Canada

Exactly two weeks into my adventure, it’s safe to say Toronto was nothing like I expected it to be… (in a good way don’t worry).

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MITACS Chapter 4: Saying goodbye + some reflections

By: Eva Kristinova (University of Regina, Canada, Mitacs Research Internship Scheme 21-22)

So there it goes. Just like that it’s time to say goodbye to another wonderful experience, in a wonderful place, having met some wonderful people. Although three months might not seem like such a long time, the sheer immersion of both the every-day and the extraordinary events is enough to produce a tear or two. This is especially the case when, one after the other, all your Mitacs acquaintances, turned good friends, who’s project started before yours, start saying their goodbyes. As I waved to the parting cars and taxis, it all started feeling a bit surreal. In a few days, that will be me in that car.

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Pre-departure & immediate arrival in Canada

By Lola Bianchi, University of Guelph, Canada

So I started writing this blogpost about 10 days before I arrived and my pre-departure experience was one which was very stressful. The closer it got to the flying date, the more apprehensive I became. 

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MITACS Chapter 3: Remembering to have fun

By: Eva Kristinova (University of Regina, Canada, Mitacs Research Internship Scheme 21-22)

This is the post I have been looking forward to the most! Because whether it seems like it or not, there is a lot to do in the largest city of Saskatchewan (and beyond), even if it is comparatively small by European standards. The best thing about spending the summer in Regina is that there are plenty of festivals and events to attend, and even Canadian national holidays to celebrate. Here are a few of my favourites!

Queen City Ex festival and fair
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MITACS Chapter 2: Research as work

By: Eva Kristinova (University of Regina, Canada, Mitacs Research Internship Scheme 21-22)

Imagine. You’ve arrived at your destination in Canada, you’ve run all the tedious errands in the first days, got yourself familiar with the area, and met a few nice people. What do you do now? That’s right – work.

Not that that is a shocker; after all, it is the whole purpose of the three-month trip. But it can be a bit challenging finding your pace again, especially if you’ve had a few weeks between the start of your internship and the end of the academic year. It’s summer, beautiful weather (although slightly colder in Canada, of course) and your body and brain naturally enter into vacation mode. That’s normal. In addition, it’s not just any kind of work you’re doing. It’s research. It requires you to really think about everything you do, question your assumptions on the way, and question some more. Thankfully, at least you stay in an academic setting. So, let’s talk about what it feels like to do the actual work on a research internship.

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MITACS Chapter 1: Arrival and settling in

By: Eva Kristinova (University of Regina, Canada, Mitacs Research Internship Scheme 21-22)

For those of you who have been following my study abroad journey in France, it might be a little confusing to start reading about yet another trip without a proper closing. Two quick things on that: 1. saying goodbye is always difficult, and so I have been kind of avoiding it, even having left Toulouse behind; 2. who says it’s over?! Oh no, I am not done with France yet!

So yes, I hope that inadequate explanation provided at least some closure. Moving on…

University of Regina (south-west entrance)
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Travelling Canada’s Rockies

By Joseph McCabe

This is hands down the best trip I have ever been on.  I would recommend everyone who gets a placement in Canada or the USA (or anyone else for that matter) to visit the Canadian Rockies that surround the small towns of Banff and Jasper. I did it at the end of my placement, so I did not have to worry about assignments or exams, and it was the best thing I did whilst on exchange in the University of Toronto.

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What Are Fraternities Really Like?

This post will try to demystify frats for exchange students going to North America, and hopefully persuade you to get involved.

By Joseph McCabe (University of Toronto, Canada)

The inner workings of fraternities are often left as somewhat of a mystery for exchange students. Their obscurity and emphasis on secrecy means that infamous stereotypes usually surround any conversation about frats and, by extension, the guys that are members/brothers within them. This blog should give you some insight into what they’re actually about and encourage you (if you’re a guy) to join one because it has made my year infinitely better – girls can join sororities, but you will have to ask someone else about them.

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A Practical Guide to Accommodation in Toronto

By Joseph McCabe (University of Toronto, Canada)

There are four main options for accommodation for exchange students in Toronto: University Halls, Private students’ residence, student co-op housing, and Private renting. I opted to go for a private residence on the edge of campus, which was perfect for me, but I will talk about that later. I will give some general advice first; then, I will go through each of these (there will be a sentence overview after each one if you don’t want to read the whole thing) and finish with what I would advise to make sorting accommodation as stress-free as possible.

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