Research in Quebec: they did it!

Per the fabulous studentposted on December 20, 2021

9 minutes

Do you dream of diving and studying in Canada? Guillaume, Manon, Adrien and Léo did. Their backgrounds and profiles are very different, but they have one thing in common: they all chose Laval University in Quebec.

Guillaume: from Strasbourg to Quebec

Guillaume arrived in Quebec at the age of 17, shortly after completing his bachelor’s degree in France. After several language stays with a host family in Canada, he fell in love with the country and chose to do his university studies there.

“Université Laval met all my criteria. Originally from Strasbourg, I didn’t want to get lost in Montreal, I wanted a French-speaking city on a human scale. Quebec seemed more pleasant to me with its historic center and green spaces. ULaval was also highly rated with an excellent reputation, remaining much more affordable than a business school in France. »

Left to pursue a bachelor’s degree, the equivalent of leave in France, Guillaume quickly decided that he no longer wanted to go out as he had originally planned.

“I enrolled for a bachelor’s degree and fell in love with Quebec. I decided to stay and continue my studies to become a professional accountant (CPA, the equivalent of a certified public accountant degree) with a DESS in public accounting. Subsequently, I started my career at the international firm EY, then became a financial analyst at iA Financial Group, a group of insurance and wealth management companies that manages $214.5 billion in assets! From a concrete point of view, it is the economic dynamism and the very low unemployment rate that made me realize the great possibilities for the future offered by the region. »

ULaval’s experience allowed Guillaume to build an ambitious career.

“A month after my arrival on campus, I joined a political association in which I found many contacts that allowed me to have a career that I am proud of today: I was elected advisor to the French abroad, a position linked to the French Consulate in Quebec! While at Laval University, the influence of my professors and community activities have given me the means to step out of my comfort zone to excel and achieve my goals.

It is a daily motivation to live in a country where everything is possible, where there are fewer barriers than in France. My advice would be to dive in without hesitation, the adventure is very rewarding. »

Manon and Adrien: An Unexpected Twist

Manon and Adrien arrived in Quebec together with their dog to complete their graduate studies after obtaining their license in France. Bro explains:

“We have two different courses, I was taking a biology course and I was planning to do an internship or a session abroad as part of a master’s degree.

– Adrien: And I was also finishing a course and there was no business school that interested me. I was also tempted by an international experience, so we chose Quebec for its francophone side and different culture. »

At Laval University, their respective paths took an unexpected turn, especially for the student:

“Initially, I wanted to do a professional master’s degree with an internship. I opted for the master’s with thesis because I was very interested in the Faculty of Pharmacy. In the end, I enjoyed this course so much that I continued with a PhD in pharmaceutical sciences! After studying obstetrics and a reorientation in biology, I found my way. I’m fine, so I stay!

– Adrien: For my part, after one or two sessions, I got a professor whose course was a revelation to me and I asked to be a teaching and research assistant. So I accepted a research contract to restructure an MBA course and in early 2020 I started my first course load. Even if the pandemic ended this activity, I was invited to participate in the writing of a book on this subject. It was my first experience after graduation. And, since January, I have been a study management consultant at FSA, where I obtained my MBA in strategic project management. I was lucky to have my contracts fixed while waiting for the right opportunity and I finally got my dream job at the company I wanted.

– Manon: These opportunities, we would never have them in France, especially for me in research.

– Adrien: And I would never have gotten a well-paid position with so many responsibilities and very advantageous working conditions right after my degree! I was lucky enough to work at FSA during my studies and have good recommendations, which helped me get this position. »

More than a study project, it was a life project for the couple who are planning their future in Quebec.

“We bought a condo thanks to affordable real estate in Quebec, our long-term project is to settle here.

– Manon: We are now permanent residents of Canada. We’ve never stayed so long in one place, that’s a good sign! »

Do research at Université Laval

Finally, Léo came to do his doctorate in law at the Jean Monnet Chair in European Integration.

“I discovered Laval University by chance during an internship in Luxembourg. I met a former doctoral student who had worked with Mr. From them, my research director, an expert in international and European law. I was looking for a faculty in Europe to do my thesis on European migration policies and my contact with Professor Delas allowed me to learn more about the advantages that ULaval offers PhD students. First, the freedom to choose the topic and research axis of your thesis. He was able to guide me to an interesting and promising topic in the research community. Therefore, the doctoral system in Quebec is different from that in France: it is structured, with mandatory subjects, and flexible, because the doctoral student can organize himself as he sees fit. And in the context of my research, being in Quebec means working in a more neutral environment on European issues. »

More than a place of research, ULaval is for Léo a true place of life and fulfillment.

“I am athletic and I discovered that Université Laval has the largest university sports complex in eastern Canada, the PEPS, on its campus. I practiced pole vaulting for over 20 years in France, so I got in touch with the coach and he included me in the squad of Rouge et Or, the university team at the University. I am delighted to be able to play this sport again, which allows me to take a break from my research work.

I am also a member of the Laval Enrolled in Graduate Studies Student Association (AELIES). Getting involved is a good way to integrate into the student community. In this association, I carry the voice of foreign students, I find it interesting! »

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