Known as North America’s cultural mosaic, Canada is extremely open and accepting of international students wishing to study here.

And with more schools and financial institutions offering financial programs specifically tailored for students who are new to the country, tuition, textbooks, leisure time and endless Double Double coffees from Tim Horton’s (every Canadian student’s elixir of life) are all more affordable.

Here’s a selection of Canadian schools that will have any international student feeling right at home.

Dalhousie University – Nova Scotia

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Photo Credit: mricon

Going to study abroad is a life-changing experience for anyone, and it all can be made easier when someone can be relied on for guidance. Dalhousie sets all of its international students up with one-on-one study coaches. These meetings not only help students unravel complex class material, but the coaches also help students adjust to Atlantic Canadian culture while suggesting ways they can stay connected to their own heritage. There are also two international student centres available from when you start your degree until you finish.

University of Saskatchewan – Saskatoon, Saskatchewan

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Photo Credit: Kyla Duhamel

The opportunities available while studying at the University of Saskatchewan are diverse enough to satiate anyone’s curiosity. The university is renowned for over 100 research programs, enabling international students to further any academic endeavour. Living on residence is the best way to meet students from all backgrounds. The sense of community at the university is tight-knit, helping any international individual become familiar with Canadian culture while sharing their own with local students.

Concordia University – Montréal, Québec

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Photo Credit: Viola Ng

After Paris, Montreal is the second largest French-speaking city in the world, often cited as having a European feel. Concordia offers free shuttling services between its two campuses, so students can experience the vibrancy of the city as they go from class to class. On both campuses, there are many events for international students to develop connections. From more formal workshops such as how to find work in Canada, to movie nights and cultural gardening workshops, Concordia has about every pastime covered for anyone from anywhere.

University of Alberta – Edmonton, Alberta

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Photo Credit: IQRemix

For those wishing to attend the University of Alberta, move assured that the university is there to make every step of the way as easy as possible. For starters, arriving in the province, international students land to an airport welcome and a three-day orientation. Upon starting the term, students may also take part in the Bridges program, which connects international students with other students to share experiences of living abroad.

Simon Fraser University – Burnaby, British Columbia

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Photo Credit: jill.s

With three campuses across Metro Vancouver, SFU prides itself on its International Engagement Team and Global Engagement Student Committee. Comprised of faculty and students (international as well), the groups organize and facilitate programs and events to promote intercultural education and awareness. Resources are also available on how to navigate Vancouver’s transit system, as well as activities international folk can get involved with to stay connected to their culture. If that’s not enough, there are many cultural clubs where students can meet people from the same background.

These five universities each offer fulfilling experiences for international students, and there are many other great options across Canada. Do your research and feel confident knowing your school has your back and is ready to help you start your academic life in a new country.

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