Bachelor of Science (Neuroscience)
Bachelor of Science (Neuroscience)

Exchange at McGill in Montreal was unreal. I went in Winter Semester 2014 and as a final year BSc (Neuroscience) student, McGill was a perfect fit as they have one of the largest collections of brains and the courses are run by professors at the top of the field.

In the ski fields with friends

McGill had lots of academic opportunities in neuroscience and I even had the chance to join researchers in the lab to assist in conducting their research. The Neuroscience Society was a highly active group and I met lots of people from it by participating in fun events such as karaoke, discussion panels and meet the professor. I highly recommend joining your program’s society as it is a great way to meet people.

Another group I highly recommend joining is MISN (McGill International Student Network) they organise multiple outings for international students and it’s a great way to meet likeminded people who enjoy travelling. My favourite trip with them was our adventure to the ice hotel and Quebec City. It was so magical. Another favourite group of mine was the SSMU Ski and Snowboard Club. I had an absolute ball spending my weekends shredding the slopes around Quebec and sometimes Canada. They also organised a few night-time trips which were wicked. Interstude were another group I joined with on a few trips to see the sights. They organised trips to Chicago, Boston and New York to name a few for a reasonable price.

I stayed in a private student residence similar to Urban Nest in South Bank but with more communal apartment living that I had organised before I left Australia. It was handy being so close to McGill, especially during the cold winter months, but considering how reasonable rent is I would highly recommend waiting till you get to Montreal and getting a shared place in the Ghetto (which is adjacent to McGill) or the Plateau (which is super groovy area).

McGill has lots of facebook groups for things from housing to clothing and free food. Definitely join them to grab yourself a bargain and make a bit of cash at the end of your exchange.

Winter was one of the coldest I had ever experienced so definitely buy decent winter boots and coat when you get there. The thing I loved about Montreal is that they make the most of winter. We went to outdoor festivals in negative degrees and evenings were often spent on frozen lakes ice skating. Montreal definitely turns into a whole other city in the summer and if you go on winter exchange I HIGHLY recommend staying a bit longer after finals. It’s absolutely gorgeous when all the flowers come out.

Montreal is a quirky mix of European and North American culture and has so much to offer. Almost every week there were different art installations and community events. Nuit Blanche was one of my favourites as the whole city was awake for 36 hours and there were lots of free events. Montreal has a plethora of cool bars and as for food Montreal has some delish selections. My personal favourite is Poutine which is fries with cheese curds and gravy. I had a mouth watering one with bacon and maple syrup. Also be sure to see at least one sunset/sunrise on Mont Royale.

Montreal was a great place to go on exchange to experience a North American university that provides quality education yet a fun and exciting time in one of the most student populated city.

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