British Columbia, Canada
Est. 1965Ranked among top 20 universities in CA
Simon Fraser University (SFU) named after Simon Fraser, a fur trader and explorer was established in September 1965. The mid-sized public research institute provides the perfect platform for a great learning experience. It is a popular educational destination for Indian students wanting to pursue computer science, engineering and business administration courses.
SFU has three campuses with the main one perched atop Burnaby Mountain at an elevation of 365 meters. The dramatic setting on the peak offers a stunning panoramic view of the surrounding area. The 430 acre Burnaby campus is gorgeous with its great landscaping, scenic beauty, imposing architecture, nice artwork, and peaceful environment. Being isolated from the downtown Vancouver, options of nightlife and partying are limited. However, Burnaby is a nice, safe town with major retail locations, malls, restaurants and plenty of opportunities for outdoor stuff like biking, walking trails and weekend getaways.
The university that operates on a full-year three-term system offers more than 100 programs in eight faculties. SFU has an impressive laboratory infrastructure. The University provides students facilities to conduct joint research with other institutes and agencies through its association with Bamfield Marine Station, TRIUMF and the Great Northern Way Campus Ltd in Vancouver. SFU has a 7-floor library which boasts of over 2 million published books, 63,000 e-journal subscriptions, and 6,000 print contributions. In addition, there is WIFI accessibility throughout campus and support for IT/ Technological issues. SFU also has a Museum of Archaeology and Ethnology and three art galleries. Health services are available but there is no Faculty of Medicine or an on-campus hospital.
There are many options of online residency ranging from shared dorms to family and graduate rooms suitable for every kind of personality and interest. These hostels come with cooking or dining facilities and other perks like telephone, Internet, laundry and parking.
Despite the convenience of living in school, off-campus housing is a popular choice among Indian students who feel comfortable residing with roomies from their own country. The university pitches in to help students find city accommodation and roommates through websites, newspaper ads, bulletin boards and notifications.
The UniverCity neighbourhood close to the campus is a wonderful choice. It includes homes, condos, and towers complete with all amenities and even a parkland. Other options include Cypress Gardens Apartments, Villa Torino Apartments Woodland Park Townhomes Apartments and 2345 Madison Avenue. These 2-3 bedroom homes can be rented at around $ 900-$1400 per month.If commuting is an issue, public transportation is fairly good in Vancouver with direct buses, sky train, trolleybuses to help students reach the campus from any location.
Since SFU comes in the Pacific Rainforest climatic zone, students are likely to experience everything from sunny days, wet monsoons, thunder and lightning, wind storms and snow storms. From May to October, the weather is pleasant but from November to April count on wet cloudy days. Snow makes the Burnaby Mountain dangerous which often lead to closure of roads to SFU.
The school strives to train its students in well-organized programs before specialization. The business, engineering, and interactive arts course are well-recognized. The class sizes are favourable and SFU has a roster of top-notch professors who are knowledgeable, experienced in their respective fields and very active in the research community. The faculty members are approachable and always willing to help students in and outside the classroom. Facilities like supplementary tutorial classes and teaching assistants are also available.
Financial aid plays a pivotal role in SFU and brilliant students are awarded entrance scholarships for around two terms. International students with financial constraints receive grants, awards, scholarships and other kinds of monetary assistance on enrolment. There is also provision for students to dabble in work study programs like Research and Teacher Assistantships (RA & TA’s).
The university’s cooperative and work-integrated programs can lead to numerous job opportunities. The Career Management Center and growing alumni network provide students endless resources and services like counselling sessions and workshops for resumes, cover letter tips and interview preparation. Career fairs are held regularly which have a good turnout. High profile firms like Mitacs Globalink, WAC Bennett Library, Amazon, McKinsey and Microsoft are known to recruit and offer internships. Students are quite confident of securing jobs.
SFU is definitely one of the best universities in Vancouver which offers an average student some great opportunities for personal and professional development. However, the University is less well known outside Canada and completely overshadowed by UBC which has a higher national/international profile.
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