According to TopUniversities, Montreal was named as the number 1 and the best student city in the world. And I was the lucky one who experienced what is like to be a student in this amazing city.
Starting from my very first day Montreal, everything changed for me. I was stressing about all the new buildings, new people, new rules and fact that home is so far away. I have not even realized then how many unforgettable memories and friends I am going to make in here.
Surrounded by concrete jungle, I began to explore Montreal. No wonder this city was named as the best student city as it has everything you need. Starting with incredible tourist places like Mont-Royal, lots of cafes and one of the best Universities in the world. For those who like socializing, Montreal has Saint Laurent Boulevard. During the day, this street is filled with people who are shopping, but when the sun goes down, Saint Laurent becomes a party street!
Moreover, I was so surprised when I realized that my Evo student accommodation was right next to the Old Town of Montreal. I spend one-hour walking through the streets of it and that was enough to fell in love with this place.
Evo student accommodation
Old Town Montreal
I believe it would be hard to find a person who would not want to live in Montreal. It is because here you can find everything: Downtown, Old Town, Artist district, Little Italy, China Town, campuses and even more.
Studying at John Molson School of Business
I have chosen Montreal and JMSB as my number 1 choice for studying abroad and I was so happy when I found out I got accepted to it. My lectures started the next day from my arrival, therefore this abroad experience was really intense from the beginning. It took me 20 Google Maps searches and about 5 questions to locals to finally reach my University. Montreal city is full of small streets, therefore for a new visitor like me, it was very easy to get lost.
John Molson School of Business is ranked as a best 24th business school in the world. Thus, as you can imagine school’s building was a huge skyscraper. It was so different from my University which had 2 floors and here I am in a giant building of 25 floors. I did not know how long lectures are in JMSB, therefore I ended up sitting all hungry and thirsty in my first 3-hour Retailing lecture. Over the weeks, I realized how helpful longer lectures are because then students get more focused and have more time to ask professor questions. I was also surprised with the different grading system and mid-term exams (that was not a good kind of surprise).
Overall, I have to admit that I honestly miss Montreal every day. This city definitely proved that it is the best place on earth for students. I learned so many new things, adapted to totally different culture as well as made lots of international friends. I am now checking the flight prices via Skyscanner and planning my trip back to this amazing city of Canada.
Do you want to share your studying abroad experience? And get rewards for it? Join Hellouni community and become an ambassador for your university!
UCAS personal statement is part of your university application. Much like a CV, it is your chance to sell yourself. describe your ambitions, skills, and experience.
You can only submit one personal statement and you can’t change it after your application has been submitted. Therefore, it is important to get it right.
Here are our top tips:
- Try to stand out, remember to be authentic and be careful with humor or quotes. You don’t want to appear too cheesy or cliché.
- Use a template to help get you started. Here’s a great personal statement worksheet on the UCAS website.
- Proofread aloud and get someone else to check that your grammar, spelling, and punctuation are all correct.
What universities are looking for?
“Unis aren’t looking for a dictionary definition of a subject. They know what their degrees are about; they want to know what you understand and enjoy about the subject.” Louise Carr, University of Liverpool.
First of all, show enthusiasm, motivation, and focus. Universities don’t expect you to be an expert already. However, they would like to know why you like to become an expert in the subject you’re applying to. Therefore, don’t forget to mention extra-curricular activities, transferable skills. Moreover, mention any relevant work experience and what your future plans are.
International and EU students
As an international student there are a few extra things you should mention:
- Why you want to study in the UK
- Your English language skills and any English courses or tests you’ve taken
- Why you want to be an international student rather than study in your own country
For information about applying online for a UK visa, check out our blog article.
Writing your personal statement
“Put your notes in order according to what the course you’re interested in is looking for. If you have any skills and experience relevant to the entry requirements, make sure you say so at the start of your personal statement.” Amy Smith, Nottingham Trent University.
Use the personal statement mind map on the UCAS website to start planning.
How long should it be?
There’s no maximum word count. However, you’ll need to remain within the 4,000 character limit (including spaces and punctuation). Moreover, students have to keep the statement to a total of 47 lines.
UCAS recommends that you write your personal statement in Microsoft Word before copying and pasting it into the online application form. It is because the application page times out after being inactive for 35 minutes.
All personal statements are scanned by plagiarism detection technology, so make sure you don’t copy someone else’s work.
If you are caught plagiarising, this could have serious consequences for your application.
This brilliant video with Jane Marshall from Imperial College has everything you need to know about how to write your personal statement.
Check out our other articles on studying in London, student life in the UK and 5 things to consider before choosing a university.
Moreover, if you want to ask more questions about studying abroad, do not hesitate and join Hellouni community! Register on our website and get in contact with ambassadors from various universities around the world.
Bonnie is a fitness blogger and final year student at the University of Glasgow. She runs an Instagram account where she posts daily about everything from how to get fit and healthy, to giving tips on how to balance student life with social events. Bonnie has just come back from Mallorca where she spent a semester abroad. Moreover, she had previously spent a year in Berlin as part of her degree. We managed to catch up with her between classes to chat about all things health, fitness, and university. So here are some Bonnie’s tips on how students can stay fit and healthy at the university .
Credit: Stevie Purves https://steviepurvesphotography.co.uk/
So, Bonnie, do you have any tips for our readers who want to study abroad and keep healthy?
Doing study abroad can be a scary time because everything around you is foreign and new. One of the first things I did when I moved to both Mallorca and Berlin was to join a gym. This allowed me to get into a routine and made me feel more at home. It is because even though everything else around me had changed, I still knew how to use the gym equipment. It also helped me get involved with a group of like-minded people, now friends, and integrate myself into a new culture.
What is your daily routine like?
I like to start my day with a cup of coffee or green tea and take 20 to 30 minutes in the morning just to be quiet before starting the day. I use this time to read, do some yoga, or post on Instagram. After breakfast, I go to university where I spend all day either in class or in the library on campus. I treat university like a full-time job so I try to get all my work done before going home. By leaving my evenings free for going to the gym and social activities with friends, my day has a clear divide between work and play which I think is essential.
Credit: Stevie Purves https://steviepurvesphotography.co.uk/
What if I can’t afford to go to the gym? Or if I don’t like the gym?
It’s is a very common but false assumption that you need to go to the gym, or love going to the gym in order to be fit and healthy. It’s really not the case at all. It all depends on what your goal is. If your goal is to build muscle, then you probably will need to join a gym to access the equipment, but if you just want to get healthy then there are so many other ways to do this. You could try swimming, running, going to fitness classes or yoga. When I started out getting fit, I didn’t go to a gym but instead exercised in my room at home. I watched Youtube videos on my laptop and used my language dictionaries as weights. You can 100% find something that you enjoy doing and is budget-friendly.
“I don’t have time to be healthy.” What would be your response to this?
The honest answer? You have time for whatever you see as a priority, so if you find that you don’t have time to be healthy: you need to sit down and be honest with yourself about whether you are actually making your health a priority.
I guarantee that you will be able to find 45 minutes to 1 hour a day to devote to your health. Think about why you don’t have time. Are you spending your evenings binge-watching TV shows or going out drinking 5 nights a week?
Credit: Stevie Purves https://steviepurvesphotography.co.uk/
A lot of students can fall into the trap of partying too much. How do you maintain a healthy balance between work and play?
It all comes down to time management and moderation. I like to sit down on a Sunday evening and plan my week. I think the best approach is to organise your schedule around the fun activities you want to do. Plan your study around going out with friends on Friday night, or schedule in a mid-week cinema trip. Going out partying and staying up late 5 nights a week isn’t going to be good for your productivity or your health goals. However, going out once a week isn’t really going to set you back much.
What is your diet like as a student on a budget?
If a student is on a student budget it doesn’t meant that he/she has to eat unhealthy foods. Taking the time to find cheaper supermarkets to get nutritious ingredients is a great way to start. I also like to prepare my food so that I always have something to hand. This means that I know what I am eating and helps me stay on budget. It is because I am not buying expensive snacks or meals while I’m out at uni.
Do you have a go-to healthy meal?
I don’t really have a go-to healthy meal, so to say. Most of my meals are quite creative. However, I try to stick to the principles of balanced and nutritious meals. Food is like fuel, so whatever you put into your body is what you are going to get out. By feeding your body with the right nutrients, your study performance as well as your fitness performance will improve.
A balanced meal has carbs, protein and fat.
When preparing a meal, I think about three questions:
What are my carb choices: e.g. pasta, rice or potatoes.
What protein will I choose: e.g. meat, fish, beans.
Which healthy fats can I eat: e.g. avocado, olive oil or nuts.
The options are limitless!
The bulk of my meals is always vegetables, whether roasted, steamed or fried. I make sure to always have leafy greens like spinach and kale. I then choose any one of these combinations, depending on what I feel like eating. To get a better idea of the sort of combinations I make and the sort of food I eat, check out on my blog or on my Instagram.
What is the biggest mistake you see people make when trying to get healthy?
I actually wrote a blog article about this not too long ago. There is a very fine line between being dedicated to your health and fitness goals and being obsessed by them. Sometimes you have to take a step back and think about it.
Read the Bonnie’s article here.
If you could give only one piece of advice to students who want to start their journey on a healthy lifestyle, what would it be?
Just do it. You will never have as much time as you do at university. Use this time to learn how to look after yourself and make your healthy lifestyle a habit. You’ll thank yourself later in life.