The University of British Columbia recently announced its plans to build a new Vantage College campus, an international students-only college with a focus on language assistance. We spoke to TRU students about their thoughts on this new project.
My English is not very good, but ultimately, because of my Canadian friends, I am learning and improving. It’s helping me. I don’t know exactly what the point [is] of not allowing domestic students to study in that building. A lot of international students come to Canada wanting to stay. To settle and work in the Canadian culture you need to know the way they speak, you need to know their slang, which you can’t study in the classroom. You need to have Canadian friends and Canadian culture around you.
Post-bacc, International Business
The first thought that came to mind was, why would international students come to Canada if they didn’t want to be integrated into our culture? That kind of stands out to me as an issue. Would there be enough of an interest for a separated school? If kids are coming from overseas to go to a Canadian institute, it would seem like they would want to be a part of regular school instead of something that’s separated.
Although it could be beneficial because [the university] could support the individual needs of the international students better. Obviously they have different needs than domestic students. They need a little more help with language barriers, stuff like that.
Second year, Business
I think implementing that institution kind of depletes the purpose of international students coming overseas and trying to immerse themselves into our culture and meet new people. I think that it restricts them and has them in their own world, so I really don’t think it’s the best idea. I can see for money matters it could be worth the institution doing that because international students do pay more than Canadian students do.
Third year, Arts
Since it’s a university, students are coming to dive into this environment. So, I think it’s a bad idea because international students are going to only be surrounded by international students and they won’t interact with domestic students. They wouldn’t get to improve their skills and they won’t get involved with the culture.
Post-bacc, Human Resources
I believe in some aspects it would be beneficial. I’ve been to a few universities over the past years and I’ve seen where international students struggled to learn a language. Maybe if there was some sort of crash course, it might help out everyone in the future. It’s going to sound bad, but it keeps class sizes down, [and] when you don’t have a teacher answering simple questions, it doesn’t hold back the rest of the class.
Third year, International Business