Studying in Vancouver: What makes a Polytechnic University different?

Mar 21 2018, 8:48 pm

You really need to think long and hard about where you want to study. Let’s be real, the university you choose is somewhere you’ll likely be spending the next few years of your life, so you need to enjoy going to class.

Oftentimes, Vancouverites feel as though they’re limited to one kind of university model, but that’s not the case. Kwantlen Polytechnic University (KPU) opened its doors to students back in 1981 and it remains the only polytechnic university in the country, with roughly 20,000 students.

KPU currently has four campuses in Metro Vancouver, in Surrey, Richmond, Langley, and Cloverdale, which are easily accessible by transit, and a fifth campus opening soon at Central City in Surrey.

What makes KPU different?

For starters, the university provides students with the right skills they need for the careers they want to pursue – in academic fields, trades, business, health, science, and creative fields. This includes experiential learning and a lot of hands-on projects which allow you to turn your knowledge into know-how. Plus, it’s somewhere that’s not just dedicated to one form of qualification. KPU has 120 programs where you can earn a certificate, a citation, a diploma, or a degree. And some of these are totally unique to the university!

KPU has the only brewing diploma in BC, the only graphic design for marketing degree program in Canada, and it’s got one of the two fashion design degrees in the country. If you study at KPU, you have the option to bridge certain certificate and diploma credentials into bachelor’s degrees.

This means your opportunities are endless and making the transition from one program to another is easy to do. Bonus: You get to choose a program that works with your schedule; full-time, part-time, or even select online courses.

Everything is teaching-focused

Small class sizes (maximum 35 students) allow for the most effective learning environments at KPU. You won’t be stuck at the back of a large lecture hall filled with hundreds of people where you might be too intimidated to ask a question. Instead, you can ask instructors, guest lecturers, and industry experts any questions that you have and get a direct answer. Even better, many of the 1,400+ faculty and staff members have tons of real-world experience in their field, so they’ll be able to advise you well.

You can study abroad

KPU gives you the opportunity to study internationally through field schools, exchanges, study abroad semesters, and international co-ops, with opportunities available in most program areas; something that most universities don’t have. You’ll acquire new skills abroad and return back to KPU to study a program that meets the needs of regional and global markets in a state-of-the-art facility.

Student support

KPU understands how expensive school can be for students, that’s why the university provides almost $2 million annually in scholarships and awards. More than $250,000 is available every year for students starting at KPU for the first time. And once you’re a student at the university, you’ll have access to over 30 student services from academic advising to sport and recreation like fitness classes, personal training, and intramural leagues.

For more information and to find a program that works for you, visit KPU: where thought meets action. Check out the university on TwitterFacebookInstagram, and Snapchat (KwantlenU), to get the latest updates.

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