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Showing posts from 2015

Gregory Thorburn: Enjoying Life Abroad

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When I first got to Amiens and started attending classes, I was very quiet, but that’s what I’m always like. It takes me a while to open up, but I eventually did and met lots of nice people including fellow Canadians from Ontario. This is the first time living on my own, and I have to say I think I’m doing pretty well. Knowing how to cook is key while I’m on my own, and being organized and tidy has helped me a lot.
Having lots of time off from school has let me travel to 9 countries so far. I think that’ll be it for now since I’ll be back in Paris for Christmas and New Years. I made good friends with the Canadians, and I travelled to many cities with them. Brussels, Amsterdam, Cologne, Budapest, Vienna and Prague. When I flew here at the end of the summer, I was able to visit Monaco and the south of France with my family. My girlfriend also visited in October and we travelled to London to see an old friend, and stayed in Paris as well. I’ve gotten a lot done this semester; it’s the cha…

Gurkirn Sran: Working For The Mouse

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Learning about the Walt Disney Company has been eye opening. Even though I did a ton of research on the Disney Company to prepare for my interview, there are still tons of new facts and information as the company has such a rich history and is constantly evolving. I think what surprised me the most was the emphasis the company puts on safety. Every decision is made while putting both the guests and casts safety first. It is of such high importance that the company has a special phone line dedicated to reporting any safety concerns one might have and have the number printed on the back of every employee ID. Overall, the program has been very exciting and beneficial. Some days are harder than others but I’m grateful to be able to have this experience and am looking forward to the months to come. I am especially excited to start travelling now that I have settled in and have adapted to the life of a ‘CP’.
Gurkin Sran is a Tourism Management student at Capilano University. Gurkin particip…

Gregory Thorburn: Settling in Amiens, France

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Firstly, I’d like to say that if you choose to study abroad here in Europe, start saving asap! Amiens is a beautiful little city located just north of Paris in the Somme department. It is home to the third-largest cathedral in Europe, and the largest Gothic cathedral in France.


The city is focused from the center, as soon as you drive ten minutes from the city center, things space out and soon you’re in the countryside. It has great shopping located on the rue des trois Cailloux, this is the main strip where you’ll find restaurants, shopping, and city events. Amiens is a festive town, and there’s a lot to do here.


Every weekend there’s always something to look forward to. After living here for a month, I’ve settled in quite nicely. I recommend you take advantage of the cheap wine here, and the vast variety of tasty cheese that takes up entire aisled at the grocery store.


French life is very relaxed; restaurants are usually closed in the afternoon and open back up around 7pm. They like…

Brooklynn Nelsen: Just do it!

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If you are thinking about going abroad, then look no further… YOU HAVE TO DO IT! You may be a little hesitate, like I was, or maybe you are ready for the adventure of a lifetime. No matter what the case, you will not be disappointed.

I can’t believe it has been over a year since I decided to take my first steps toward, what turned out to be, a life changing experience. Let me tell you, I was nervous!! I had never been on my own before and it wasn’t like I was going to be down the street, I was going across the world! However, the minute I stepped into my dorm room, I felt at home and for the first time in my life I felt independent. I instantly fell in love with my new home, my town, my school, and my flat mates… and so will you!



Studying abroad not only sets you apart from other graduates, but it also gives you the opportunity to travel the world. I traveled to 15 countries during my six months abroad. I was even lucky enough to travel for a month with my best friend and two month with…

Kelsey Singer: A Once in a Lifetime Opportunity

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Before my semester abroad became a reality, I always dreamed of doing an exchange to another country. For the two years prior to my exchange, many of my close friends took off for places like Switzerland and Ireland for a semester and bombarded my news feed with beautiful photos and inspiring stories. For me, that cemented my decision to apply for study abroad and I haven’t looked back since. I definitely had fears that I wouldn’t make any friends or that I would miss home, but those were quickly put to rest. Being part of an exchange program means there are going to be other students just like yourself leaving their homes for a semester. I immediately met so many people upon arriving in Vlissingen who I would attend all my classes with and all the weekend parties with. It was so exciting and there was so much to learn that I didn’t have a second to miss home.
Looking back on it now, it is hard to believe how quickly it went by. It is definitely okay to miss your friends and family an…

Amanda Catalano: Seriously Though

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Studying abroad has definitely given me a sense of independence. But isn’t that what everyone says?
Seriously though, there really is no better way to gain independence then to move away from your family and friends and everything you have ever known to be familiar.  As soon as I moved away I found myself being more assertive and more open to new possibilities. Stepping outside your comfort zone is never easy, but if you can put yourself in a position where you have to do so, it can open up your world to so many more possibilities.
My favorite way that I have grown abroad is in the form of relationships. When you are in a new environment, you have to form new relationships. I found myself becoming great friends with people that I may have never even talked to in my regular life because I already had my own set of friends. I met and became good friends with people from all around the world, and all were completely different and had extremely fascinating stories.

Study abroad made me re…

Zoe Sofianos: Life Lessons in the Strangest of Places

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This reverence for ceremony and the very zen idea of paying close observation to every movement or change is found in Japanese tea ceremony (called "sadou") or "way of tea".

The simple act of making tea and drinking it has many micro rules placed on it down to the amount of times you turn the tea bowl after you drink from it (3 times turning the bowl in your left palm with your right hand, counter-clockwise). The attention to every detail by the preparer of the cup of tea is beautiful. A swirl of the bamboo whisk inside the bowl is carefully ended on an upward motion to catch any drips. It’s a slowing down of time, a rebellion against hastiness and absent-minded acting. In the end you get what you came in for: a cup of tea. But it has been transformed.


I find myself trying to appreciate more detail these days. I’ve slowed myself down in some ways, to appreciate what I’m doing in the current moment and live a little more Japanese zen. I see women carefully foldin…

Alanna Wylde: Yes!

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To anyone who is contemplating whether or not they should study abroad, my only response would be yes! Do it!Study abroad has been one of the greatest experiences of my life; I have lived and studied in a foreign country, made friends from all over the world, and had the opportunity to travel around Europe.If that isn’t considered a once in a lifetime experience, I don’t know what is! Alanna Wylde is a Bachelor of Business Administration student at Capilano University. Alanna studied abroad at FH Wien in Vienna, Austria.

Connor Pankratz: Adventure Time

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I truly love the freedom that I get from living on my own. Independence is something I was not truly aware of living back at home as I was constantly surrounded by friends and family. Knowing that if I want to get something done I have to go and do it myself. There is no one here checking in on me or watching my back, and this has helped me grow so much.

My first month abroad was very laid back, getting my feet under me and getting into the rhythm of living into the UK. So I thought now that I had become situated that it was now time to go on some adventures and see a bit more of this country, and experience the culture of London a bit more.
My highlights since my last blog post have got to be spending St. Paddy’s weekend in Dublin, watching a Premier league football match in London, and making it to the championship game with my football team. 6 months ago if you asked me if I would be playing for the best university team in England I would have said no way!

Connor is a Capilano Univers…

Kelsey Singer: Kings Day in the Netherlands

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Before leaving for the Netherlands, I remember talking to mine and Stephanie’s study abroad ambassadors about how much fun they had at Kings Day the previous year. A month after we arrived in Vlissingen, a group of us agreed to stay together and head to Amsterdam for the big event. Formerly known as Queens Day, Kings Day is a national holiday in the Netherlands. It is held on April 27 and celebrates the birthday of King Willem-Alexander. In short, it is an all day party where everyone wears a lot of orange and drinks a lot of beer.
Amsterdam was packed with people on Kings Day, yet somehow we ran into over thirty friends from the HZ. There were street vendors everywhere and even a small carnival set up with rides for people of all ages. All across central Amsterdam there were stages set up with live music and dancing, and all streets were blocked for pedestrians to walk and dance anywhere and everywhere. We had a solid group of about eight people and we spent the entire day walking ar…

Tania Suarez Mendoza: Home Sweet Hertfordshire

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Trying to put into words what I’ve experience in the past month since arriving to the UK is much harder than I thought. For starters, it seems like forever ago I was at YVR waiting nervously to board the plane. My bed that felt so unfamiliar now feels like heaven after a long day. People that I referred to as “that girl from…” or “that guy I met at…” are now people I refer to as “my friends”.

I am not going to lie; the first days were hard. The water tasted funny, people’s accents were a lot harder to understand than I thought, and it was colder than people said. At what point exactly, I don’t know, but suddenly, everything was better.  
My advice would be as simple as to take a deep breath. There were so many times that I felt overwhelmed, homesick, and exhausted. It didn’t feel like the experience everyone kept talking about. They said, “it’ll be the time of your life”. At times, it didn’t feel like it. Then, I realized that I don’t have to be doing something every hour of every …

Brooklynn Nelsen: I Don't Want it to End!

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In just a few months, I can proudly call England my home, I can say I studied abroad, I lived on my own for the very first time, I have made lifelong friendships, I have travelled to 8 countries and in the end I will be rewarded with 12 credits toward my bachelor’s degree marking the end of my 3rd year in university. I’d say life is good! For all of you debating whether studying abroad is for you, the answer is yes! I had so many doubts in the beginning and I even hated myself for even thinking of the idea and putting myself through this. But the minute I landed in London, I knew I made the right choice.
Studying abroad has been the most rewarding experience of my life. I wouldn’t trade it for anything in the world. This is a once in a lifetime opportunity and it baffles me why every single person doesn’t apply to study abroad sometime during their degree. You get to travel the world and at the same time not having to put a hold on your schooling. I honestly thought I wouldn’t be able…

Kelsey Singer: From Vancouver to Vliss

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All my life, I have lived in the greater Vancouver area. There’s a skytrain station five minutes from my house, equipped with a 24 hour corner store and pizza place open until 2 in the morning. Costco is conveniently located a minute away, and if I need anything else I just get into my car and drive. Vlissingen feels like Vancouver’s polar opposite. Almost everything closes at 6pm, and on Sunday’s almost nothing opens at all. Public transportation in Vlissingen isn’t really a thing, either. There are a few buses that will take you out of the city to a nearby town, or the train station that can take you pretty much anywhere in the Netherlands. However, if you want to get to school by transit, you’re out of luck. I started with walking to school the first week as I was getting settled, and soon realized it was necessary to get a bike.