An ordinary day at Simon Fraser University

It has been two months since we landed in Vancouver. We are closer to the end of the adventure than to its beginning, and our experience so far allows us to describe what a casual day at SFU looks like.

7.30 AM: Time to wake up!

Even though the day light will have woken up some of us before 7.30, we are quite happy to have the opportunity to sleep relatively late on class days. While some will eat roasted toasts with a local maple syrup, others will prefer to eat cereals in a big bowl of milk (bought from the huge Walmart located 15-20 minutes from SFU campus, our favorite spot when it comes to buy food!). At 8.15, it is time for us to go to class which starts at 8.30.

8.30 AM – 12.30 PM: Class time

Most of the time, we have class on this time slot. Usually, Wednesdays are free, which allows us to work on our social business project with our team (a project that we have to develop throughout the semester), to visit downtown Vancouver or to do some shopping.

Regarding the courses, classes are usually organized the same way. In order to add value to the course by giving us a professional point of view, the teacher is assisted by a guest. These guests are often start-ups founders or co-founders.

Once the “theoretical” introduction of the class is done, it’s time for us to put this knwoledge into practice. Then, we get into groups and work on our projects with the help of the teacher and the guest. We really work in English since each team is composed of 3 GEM students and 1 Canadian student.

12:30 PM – 2:00 PM: Dining Hall

The Dining Hall is a real paradise, open 24/7. All the junk food is concentrated there: pizza, French fries, chicken, crisps, hamburger, waffle, muffin and ice-cream. All the efforts made at the gym centre are reduced to nothing: what a shame… but how to resist in front of this wonderful food? The price for lunch is between $8 and $10.

2:00PM – 6:00PM: visits and homework

When we have a lot of homework, we meet our groups, for one or two hours. Generally, we have to prepare an oral presentation or a report.
When we don’t have homework, we take advantage of this opportunity to visit this beautiful city and its surroundings: downtown, mountains, beach, forests… We have the choice and each place is worth the journey even if it’s raining most of the time…

7:30 PM:

Back to the Dining Hall for those who have the meal plan. The others have diner with their roommates, friends or classmates. Canadians are very friendly with us and are always happy to share evenings or meals with us.

8:30 PM:

Many of us have found their routine at the other side of the world.

  • Monday evening is collective sport
  • On Tuesday, we go out at Celebrities, a night club, as we don’t often run classes on Wednesday morning. Our Canadian friends made us discover this night club. We find the evening atmosphere is quite the same of GEM’s nights, which is pleasant.
  • On Wednesday night, we take some rest to be ready for the Thursday’s classes. Thursday night, everyone focuses on his Oral-Friday in class.
  • On Friday, some of us leave for an improvised weekend in a cabin in the wood, for a short trip to the United States, or for a few hours far from Vancouver, or on Vancouver Island.

We created a “Trip Advisor” where each one can comment on the places he/she visited.

By Clotilde Merillon, Antoine Revers and Antoine Lequinquis

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