The end is nigh….
And so the time has finally come to leave UBC. I say finally – as cliched as it sounds, the year has genuinely flown by!!! It seems only weeks ago I was moving in, with a full year ahead to experience all that Vancouver has to offer! It’s not all bad news however as today marked the first day of a long awaited road trip down the west coast of the U.S. with 5 mates in an RV. Every cloud and all that, but more to come about the trip on my next post.
Moving out of residence was tough. And not just because I left packing/cleaning/an outrageous amount of admin to the morning we got kicked out! It seems almost cruel that being on a year abroad gives you just enough time to form a really tight group of mates from all corners of the globe, only to then find yourself saying your goodbyes. It’s so easy to settle in to your new environment that you forget how temporary it really is. And saying goodbye is made 10 times harder when meeting up in the future involves a 10 hour flight rather than a 2 hour train! That being said, the difficulty of the goodbyes only emphasizes the impact the experience has made, and it is certainly not one I would ever trade!
It would be untrue to portray the year as one long honeymoon, and there have certainly been some lows to go along with the highs, but that is true of studying at university wherever you are. While the culture shock of moving to Vancouver seemed to be very slight, adjusting to the style and amount of work at UBC took much longer to adjust to that I anticipated. The teaching system here was much more reminiscent of being at school, being assessed through the year with quizzes, homework and midterms, not to mention final exams! It certainly won’t suit everyone, and I found there to be positives and negatives to both styles of assessment. On the one hand, the year feels much more balanced with no real build up to a huge session of final exams. The other side of the coin is that there is no real period of down time so finding time to do other things or go away for a weekend is fairly tricky!
Above all, the experience as a whole is not one to be passed up, and I cannot reccomend UBC more highly! For anyone seriously considering coming, i though I’d finish off with some suggestions and pointers for the year from my mates…
1. For any skiers/snowboarders – buy your stuff from Craigslist. So many bargains to be had!
2. Don’t spend ages deliberating over your residence – the main two are Fairview and Walter Gage and they’re both great.
3. Definitely join some of the uni clubs – UBC Ski and Board is incredible. The Varsity club is also supposed to be great for anyone wanting to borrow outdoorsy equipment.
4. Make the most of the sushi. It’s likely you’ll initially be unsure, but give it time and soon you won’t be able to get enough…