Faculty of Engineering, Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, M.Eng 2
What drew you to McGill?
The research environment allows for freedom given in the ways I conduct my research, how my ideas are respected, and that I can choose my own direction where I am supported. The location of the university was attractive since Montreal is such a beautiful city, and McGill is directly in its center. Because of this, you get a lot of exposure to established companies and other research organizations.
What was your transition to McGill like?
Honestly, it was difficult. The educational system [in India] is much different than it is in Canada; it took me a while to adapt. I still remember my first class where people were having breakfast while studying. There was definitely a hint of a cultural shock, but I learned to adjust, which quickly happened smoothy. You just have to be open to the ideas and have a good perspective towards the things around you.
What aspects of Canadian culture were the hardest to adjust to?
The shops close pretty early here. I was surprised because I really had to schedule in my shopping time. The relationships and the dynamics of friendship were also quite a bit different, as people have strict schedules for work and recreation activities.
If you could give one piece of advice to a new international student, what would it be?
To keep an open mind and have a broader perspective. With these two qualities, you will learn new things and have more fun during your university experience.
What is your favorite thing about McGill and Montreal?
Definitely the multiculturalism. Montreal especially houses many different cuisines, celebrations and festivals, and conversations in different languages. Such diversity provides several different perspectives towards life.
Do you have any interesting stories you would like to share about being an international student at McGill?
Adapting to the social culture was something that was very interesting to me, especially since I grew up with a bunch of friends and colleagues around me. I assumed that the same relationships would follow me into my graduate study years, and that having a large group of friends around me would mean always participating in activities. But I slowly realized that everyone needs to prioritize things. It's okay if you don't have a constant set of people around you. It's okay to not participate in things if you are busy. It's okay to do things all by yourself and make new friends while doing that.