University of Sherbrooke
- Université de Sherbrooke -
"Treat Yourself to America, in French"
Located in Canada, in the Province of Quebec, the Université de Sherbrooke is a French-speaking institution that offers you the opportunity to benefit from an academic education that is recognized and valued around the world.
The Université de Sherbrooke is host to more than 40,000 students, of which 9500 are registered at the University of the Third Age.
The Université de Sherbrooke has been welcoming international students ever since it was founded and each year the numbers increase. Currently, more than 1600 foreign students from 120 countries worldwide attend the Université de Sherbrooke. More than 85% of the students enrolled at the Université are from outside Sherbrooke.
There are 6975 employees at the Université de Sherbrooke, including 3400 professors, lecturers and the clinical professors at the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences.
In Quebec, universities are the only source of higher education. The North-American system is not comprised of grandes écoles or private higher education institutions. North-American universities are considered prestigious establishments and students receive high quality training and recognized diplomas. They can be compared to the European institutes of higher education (grandes écoles) for the quality of education, while remaining affordable.
The Université de Sherbrooke is situated in the southern part of Quebec, 150 km from Montréal, 220 km from Québec City and some 40 km from the American border.." (Abstract taken from www.usherbrooke.ca)
Admission: Through the University
Additional requirements (such as the TOEFL test): No
How did you experience your semester abroad: Right now I’m halfway and I love the studentlife of living on a campus. The studying itself is quite easy, just a lot.
Where did/do you spent your semester abroad?
L'Université de Sherbrooke, Québec in Canada.
How did you find where to spend your semester abroad?
On the web page of Canadian Studies.
What were the requirements for you to go to this place?
At least B2 in French.
What was/is your favourite sightseeing there?
Trips to close by cities Montréal en Québec city, and there are some beautiful nature parks close to Sherbrooke.
What was/is your favourite local food there?
A very typical Québécois dish is poutine: fries poured with gravy and a plastic-ish cheese. Very comparable to the Dutch 'kapsalon' and perfect when you are an evening out with friends. Not the most haute-cuisine dish though.
Was/is there many green spaces to relax?
Yes! Sherbrooke is very, very green.
Did/do you practice any sports there?
I took salsa classes. Unfortunately it wasn’t cold enough while I was there to go ski on the ski slope next to the campus.
Did/do you go out a lot? Where?
Every week on Thursday, the faculty organisations organise 5@8 parties. These are parties from 5 till 8 at the university, afterwards a lot of people go into town, mostly to a bar called la p’tit grenouille. I also often went to bars where they had latin nights to dance.
What did/do you think of the university? The location? The buildings? The teachers? The study programme?
The location of the campus is beautiful, laying on the side of a hill so you have a nice view over the city. They have great sporting facilities and a lot of services, like a doctor are there on campus.
How did/does it go financially? The accommodation? Food? Public transports?
Public transport within Sherbrooke is free, which is great. Outside of Sherbrooke it’s getting a little bigger problem. There exists only one bus that goes to Montreal, for every other destination you’ll need to rent a car a find a ride. Going grocery shopping in Canada is quite a shock, since it is very expensive. Luckily with the exchange rate it is not that bad in the end. Still more expensive than in the Netherlands. Accommodation is super cheap on the other hand.
What was the most surprising thing about this new culture?
I didn’t experience a big culture shock. The main thing for me that made life there different than in the Netherlands is that because of all the big distances you are dependent on the bus or car. For example to go to the mall (where the cheap supermarket is) is a 20 minute bus ride.
What is the most funny word you learned in the new language?
- Tabarnak, calisse, hosti (Church objects commonly used to curse in Québec)
- Char (coach: used to describe a car)
- Blonde and chum (girlfriend and boyfriend)
- Genre (the French version of the expletive 'like, basically used everywhere in between sentences)
What did/do you think of the workload?
It is a lot, especially since it took me all a lot of time because everything is in French.
Did/do you meet many international students?
Yes I met a lot of international students, mostly coming from France, Africa, and South America.
Gradings are given on a scale from 1 - 10.
Points of interests
(not so many <-> lots of museums etc.)
It is relatively close to other interesting cities such as Montréal and Québec-ville.
Sherbrooke is not a big city, the city center is rather small. There are a few small museums
(only local food <-> great variety of restaurants)
Many different nationalities can be found, including the famous Québécois 'poutine'.
There are some great restaurants in Sherbrooke! Just as said, it’s a small city, so there aren’t that many.
(none <-> several natural parks/recreational parks)
The nature is amazing, both in summer as in winter.
Nature is everywhere in Canada! There are some beautiful nature parks close to Sherbrooke. You do need a car though to get there.
(limited <-> many options/extra courses)
Sherbrooke as a typical student campus with all the facilities, also is it possible to ski next to campus.
In the summer there are also a lot of options, such as mountain biking, canoeing etc.
(limited <-> many theatres/cinemas/pubs
It organizes many student activities, also for international students.
Although the city is small and there aren’t many theatres and cinemas, there are still regularly great activities organized throughout the city.
Size of the University
(small <-> big)
They have around 7 faculties and more than 40.000 students
(informal <-> formal)
Professors are approachable, but since there are only lectures you do not have much contact with them. Questions mostly go through email to a student assistant.
(English suffices <-> Official Language)
Everything is done in French and with grading they are really strict on the language
The study programme
(easy <-> difficult/intense)
The exams are not that difficult, but there a lot of assignments and readings. The most difficult part is that it is all in French.
(few international students <-> many int. students)
There are quite a lot of international students, especially living on campus.
Location of the University
(hard to reach <-> close by)
Depends on where you live of course. I lived on campus so it was a 1 minute walk to class.
(expensive <-> cheap)
Food is expensive!
(difficult to find & expensive <-> easy & affordable)
Accommodation on the other hand is super cheap. On campus they are around 310 canadian dollars, which meant around 220 euros when I was there. In the city rooms are even more cheap.