The United States and Canada are attractive places for English learning, yet the U.S. continues to be the #1 destination for international student study. What makes the U.S. so appealing to international students, and what should you think about when choosing the U.S. over Canada for English study? Consider these factors.
Choosing the U.S. over Canada for English Study
The United States has most of the best universities in the world; in fact, the U.S. is home to 11 of the top 20 universities worldwide! A degree from a U.S. university provides students with the assurance of a valuable education.
U.S. universities are attractive for many reasons:
- Student services. At U.S. universities, students have many programs to support their academics. Counseling services, free tutoring, organized study groups, writing labs to help with writing essays . . . there is help for everything!
- International student support. As the #1 destination for international students, the United States is well prepared to provide students with the services they need to adjust to their life in a new country. Questions about education options, housing, health care, visas, and even driver’s licenses are easily answered by staff. With the exceptional international student services at U.S. universities, students feel like they are always taken care of.
- Emphasis on research. In the U.S., it is important that students do not just attend classes and do homework: research is an important part of their education. At the University of California, Davis, for example, 40% of students work with a professor and conduct research. Wow! These internship and research opportunities allow students to work closely with professionals and learn more about their future industry.
- Healthy social life. Americans view college as a place to learn, but also as a place to grow as a person. Students are often involved in clubs and organizations that reflect their hobbies, social interests, or passions. Read our article “How to Become Involved in Your College Campus” for some ideas of clubs and organizations that many schools offer.
U.S. universities are known for being places of invention and creation, so it makes sense that the actual majors are inventive as well. In some U.S. colleges and universities, students can actually create their own major: they choose the classes that will give them detailed understanding of an industry. However, most students choose the many majors that universities offer: most schools have over 100 majors to choose from! Here are the 10 most common majors in the U.S.
Lower cost of living
The cost of living in the U.S. is significantly lower than living in Canada: a pair of Nike shoes, for example, is 20% more expensive in Canada; dairy products, such as milk, cheese, and butter, can be 117% more expensive! Cars are 12% cheaper in the U.S., and electronics are significantly cheaper. Many things contribute to these higher prices: shipping, taxes, and regulations are some of the major components.
The U.S. is proud to be a diverse country with people from many religions and cultures. The American college experience reflects this: in the classroom, students learn about the histories and cultures from around the world; outside of the classroom, students have the opportunity to meet people with interesting backgrounds and ways of life. Religions are respected in the United States: freedom of speech and religion are very important parts of being an American. In short, you can feel free to be yourself in this diverse and welcoming country.
Does weather matter? It does to many! The United States–specifically California–has beautiful weather throughout the year. This makes it possible to enjoy the beautiful natural parks, oceans, rivers, and lakes that the state has. Even the cold winter months are not so cold in comparison to other countries (especially if you live in California, where you can enjoy skiing in beautiful Lake Tahoe or Mammoth Mountain).
When studying in the United States, students have easy access to some of the most exciting cities in the world. San Francisco, Los Angeles, San Diego, and Las Vegas are short flights from many places on the West Coast; a slightly longer plane ride will take students to amazing cities like New Orleans, Austin, and New York City. Where are you going this weekend?
With a degree from a U.S. university, you show future employers two very important things: that you have mastered the English language, and that you are a well-adapted person who isn’t afraid of change. If you choose to join clubs, enter a work-study program, or join an organization, your CV will also show that you are a person with varied interests and experiences. A degree from a U.S. university makes each student’s career options and future bright!