Two weeks before the start of the semester, I flew to Halifax to find an apartment there. To bridge the gap, I lived in a dorm. These are rented out over the semester break by some of the universities in Halifax at fairly favorable conditions (booking.com). But I’ve only heard good things from the HI Hostel in Downtown (hostelworld.com). In advance, I had already organized a visit to Halifax in Germany via Skype and myself via kijiji.ca.
You will find what you are looking for relatively quickly, especially if you only stay there for one semester. In the case of two semesters, be sure to find something for a rental period of 8 months, as apartments are often offered with a minimum term of one year. But as I said, it wasn’t particularly difficult to find something. The deposit is usually half a month’s rent, but living is more expensive than you are used to in Germany.
If you are still hesitating between off and on campus, then I would definitely advise against the residence. You pay the same for accommodation , but you only have a small room in the dormitory plus a common room in your hallway and you also have to shell out a lot of money for the meal plan. And Dockside, the cafeteria, is really not the burner.
In addition, the population is relatively young as it is mostly first year students who live there. On the other hand, you can quickly make connections and there are many events only for the residence residents. In order to get to know the country and its people, I would still recommend a flat share.
I myself lived with two Canadians and had the feeling that I was taking a lot of the country with me . You also get to know people outside of the university. It is important that your apartment is centrally located. You should be able to reach the university and downtown on foot, as the buses are a bit unreliable. Downtown, South End, and between South St and Quinpool St are the best locations.
Halifax really has a great selection of restaurants, bars and shops . Every weekend there is an event or party somewhere and it never gets boring.
Established events are for example: Burger Week, Wings Night, Country Night at Toothy Moose, Nocturn by Night, Halifax Pop Explosion or Lower Deck on Saturday.
The city also has a couple of museums, theaters, and a concert hall. Also recommended is the Saturday Farmers Market or a stroll in Point Pleasant Park. You should definitely go to a game of the Halifax Mooseheads, the local ice hockey team. Public transport is not the best, but there are many lines and the metropolitan area is easy to get to.
Outside of Halifax you have to rent a car. Definitely travel around! As much and often as you can! Nova Scotia has great corners :
- Lawrencetown Beach
- Crystal Crescent Beach Provincial Park
- Kejimkujik National Parc
- Cape Breton Highland National Parc
- Herrings Cove
- Mahone Bay
- Annapolis Valley
- Peggy’s Cove
But also Eastern Canada and Eastern USA are “close” and should be visited!
Be aware that your spending will rise and fall with the exchange rate. Therefore, you should plan between € 800-1000 a month. Nova Scotia has a relatively high VAT rate compared to the other provinces of Canada, and prices for all fresh produce go up in winter. Clothes or the like are cheaper than in Germany, for example.
I would also recommend applying for the Nova Scotia ID, otherwise you will have to carry your passport with you in bars and clubs.
Saint Mary’s University is neither the most beautiful nor the best university in the world. But has a renowned business department and the highest proportion of overseas students in Canada. I had three courses per semester, which were more work-intensive during the semester compared to German courses. But don’t worry, you won’t be overwhelmed because the level is lower than you are used to at your home university. You should shine if you are present, as this is part of the grade for some professors. Oral participation is also partially assessed. If you are in your 4th or 5th semester, you should mostly choose courses from the third or fourth year. The first year at university in Canada is comparable to high school, hence the recommendation. And don’t forget: In addition to the course fees, there are also text books that cost between $ 50- $ 250. Some of these are offered second-hand in the bookstore, but there are also book swap groups on Facebook.
Here is an overview and evaluation of the courses that I have taken.
Human Resource Economics – Barry Soper
Highly recommended! Barry Soper is a great professor who is clearly making an effort to ensure that everyone understands everything and is also understanding with students who are not native speakers of English. There are a few essays, two exams and a term paper coming up to you.
Family Business – Claudia de Fuentes
If you want to get a good grade, this is the right course for you. The workload is relatively low and the subject is comparatively simple. The professor is a bit chaotic and unfortunately you don’t learn too much.
International Marketing – Miguel Morales
Interesting course with a lot of group work, presentation and homework as well as tests.
You take something with you from the course. I would choose him again.
Ethical Responsibilities of Organizations – Cathy Driscoll
The course is okay, the professor fair, the topics theoretically interesting but a bit dry in practice. Is a compulsory course for SMU business students, lots of group work with presentations and two exams.
Marketing Management – Ethan Pancer
Ethan Pancer is great, he’s still quite young and his lectures have always been very informative and educational. Group work, presentation, product development. The course was fun – recommended.
Communications – Valerie Creelman
Very laborious but also very helpful. You learn business writing and the course helps very parallel to all other courses. To recommend!
Otherwise it should be said that the services for students , e.g. doctor or international office (offer excursions and events for internationals as well as help with visas etc.) are well organized . The student ID card also allows you to use public transport (bus and ferry) in Halifax. Then there is a fitness studio and various sports courses and teams at the university. There is also an ice rink, football field, a pub, various coffee shops and snacks and a bookstore. Check anycountyprivateschools to see more reviews from current students.
Everything on campus is within easy reach and in winter you can use the underground tunnels that connect the individual buildings.
Go abroad! Go to Halifax! It is wonderful!