University: Thompson Rivers University
Continent: North America
Study type: semester abroad
Arriving in Kamloops, I first had to realize that the place is in a desert and the typical fir forests can only be found after a half hour drive. The place is almost rain-free at this time of the year. The sunny weather puts you in a good mood. Mild summer nights also allow you to collect memories under the clear starry sky. The wintry weather, which starts quite early around the beginning of November, is often very cold, but also rainy and associated with a lot of slush. It takes a good 40 minutes by car to reach the wintry snow paradise. Check mcat-test-centers.com to see Thompson Rivers University.
There are a variety of accommodation options in Kamloops : host family, shared flat/apartment, residences (“OldREZ” and “NewREZ”). I myself lived in “NewREZ” and I can only recommend this option.
Much of my year in Canada took place in this building. Right from the start I was part of an in-house organization team, which meant that I very quickly made more Canadian acquaintances, independently of my international acquaintances. Furthermore, I would advise you to ask an English-speaking roommate. This helped me to improve my English, especially in everyday situations.
Other events were regularly offered for the residents, which were intended to promote social contact among the residents : Aaron’s Coffee Night, Grilled Cheese & Tomato Soup, Fiesta, Taco Night, Movie Night, Oktoberfest, etc. I have to admit that this strengthened the cohesion among greatly improved for residents. At the same time, however, one tends to isolate oneself somewhat from people living outside (with exceptions) and, so to speak, only undertake activities within the house community/friends living in NewREZ. Personally, I really liked it because you get to know the people around you better and you can rely on them. It feels like a big warm family there. : )
Each floor has a Resident Advisor (RA) who makes sure everything is in order and is there to help and advise at any time of the day or night. If there are problems among the students or the nightly peace is disturbed, the RA’s also take care of such matters.
Advantages: short walk to the university, possibility of contacting, faster “way home” after film or game nights/parties/etc., 24/7 reception, high level of security (visitors checking in and out; double use of the key card – at the gate and at the room door – to get into his room), night rest (from 11 in the evening during the week), one-off costs (no hidden additional costs)
Disadvantage: strict rules, night rest (from 1am on weekends, sometimes a bit too early), visitors can only check in until 11pm
free time activities
In summer as well as in winter there is a wide range of activities. However, a car is required to access most of the activities. Three friends and I then bought a car in the middle of the year. If you’re thinking about it and you’ve been there for a year, go for it! : )
Summer activities: hiking, shooting, water rafting (until September, registration in advance), paintball (until October), etc.
Winter activities (from around November): snowboarding and skiing (45 minutes away at SunPeaks, further away for experienced skiers then also BigWhite or Revelstoke) as well as snowshoeing, cross country skiing, ice skating, curling, etc.
Student ID allows free bus use anywhere in Kamloops and free access to the town’s swimming pool (right next to the university and across from OldREZ and a 5-minute walk from NewREZ). Since the swimming pool also has two saunas, two jacuzzis, a slide and a diving board, my friends and I used this frequently as a sport and leisure activity. We also went to the climbing park in Kamloops a lot.
Do’s & Don’ts
DO: Make tons of memories! Speak English only! Get a car!
DON’TS: Miss home a lot!