The university exchange I undertook at the University of Calgary has been one of the best experiences of my life. Not only did it provide a great opportunity to live in another country whilst still getting some credit for my studies, it enabled me to pursue my love of skiing and meet some of the most amazing people along the way.

Douglas with friends partying in BanffCalgary itself is the third largest city in Canada and perhaps most famous for playing host to the 1988 Winter Olympics… the one featured in ‘Cool Runnings!’ The city is conveniently situated an hours drive from Banff and the Canadian Rockies which is home to perhaps the best snow in the world in winter and some amazing scenery for hiking in the summer. Opportunities that were too good to miss!

I arrived in Calgary in the beginning of January, just in time for the start of the winter semester in one of the coldest cities in Canada.  Although it was absolutely freezing to begin with (-40c) I soon started adapting to this completely different way of life, more than doubling my winter wardrobe in the process.

I shacked up in one of the many student residence buildings available and ended up sharing my 4-bedroom apartment with a cool and interesting mix of guys from all over the world. I became friends with many of the exchange students and some of the Canadians I had classes with, sharing many big nights with all. Indeed the only bad thing about the exchange was going home after an amazing 6 months abroad!

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