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Invitation to Summer Conversation Group

Posted by on 12:39 pm in Activities, News | 0 comments

Are you new to Queen's and Canada?  Have you been with us for a while and looking to get more English conversation practice? International students, research staff and their spouses are welcome to attend the English Conversation Group at the QUIC.  Our English Language Support Program provides participants with an opportunity to practice English pronunciation, vocabulary, conversation and other language skills.  Our program has been serving students enrolled in degree programs (undergraduate or graduate), visiting scholars, and international internship participants for over 15 years. Weekly sessions provide an opportunity to ask questions about language use, Canadian culture, and about Queen's in a friendly informal setting.  Formal registration is not required and new participants may join any time. Summer schedule: June & July, Thursdays, 2:00 – 3:30 pm at the International Centre. We meet at the International Centre, and when the weather allows we go and sit for conversation outdoors, enjoying our beautiful campus. The group is very diverse. This year we already met participants from China, Egypt, France, Iran, Nigeria and Saudi Arabia.          ...

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Adventures after Graduation

Posted by on 3:01 pm in News, Students | 0 comments

The snow crunched underfoot as I hiked back over the last stretch of the glacier. I paused to unzip my parka; the bright sun was high in the pure blue sky, and it was nearing five degrees Celsius — downright hot for an Antarctic summer. I could hear the trumpeting calls of the Adélie penguins in the distance, but it wasn’t until I got closer to the colony that I saw what everyone was so excited about: downy grey chicks, cushioned beneath their protective parents. Farther in the distance I could see other penguins swimming, exploding out of the water like miniature killer whales as they porpoised back to shore. This was our last landing along the Antarctic peninsula, and the final day of this journey certainly did not disappoint.  My name is Ellie and I am an Arts ’08 alumna. I first started traveling in high school, continued doing so throughout my time at Queen’s, and never really stopped once I graduated. For me, travel has always been an important part of how I define myself. Exploring the world inspires lifelong learning, and that doesn’t need to end after you finish your semester abroad.  While I have travelled extensively throughout Central America, Europe, and Japan, this year I got the incredible opportunity to go on a true adventure of a lifetime. Because of my love of travel, I have always enjoyed teaching my students about the world. As a teacher, I recognize the importance of expanding my students’ worldview and helping them develop their own senses of wonder and exploration. Although I knew applying to the National Geographic/Lindblad Expeditions Grosvenor Teacher Fellow program would be a long shot, I simply couldn’t pass up the opportunity to try. That’s how I found myself, in December 2015, boarding a plane headed for Buenos Aires, the first stop on a long journey to the Antarctic peninsula. We then continued on to Ushuaia, Argentina, the southernmost city in the world, to board the National Geographic Explorer. We made our way out of the Beagle Channel and were soon crossing the Drake passage. As the seasickness passed, it became harder and harder to force myself to go to sleep each night. I wanted to make every moment count, and the nearly 24-hour sunlight made that easy to do. One often experiences “firsts” while travelling, and this trip was no exception — we saw our first icebergs, watched our first penguins waddle, gasped at the sight of our first whales, hiked for the first time on the world’s most remote continent, and kayaked for the first time in serene polar waters. As world explorers, these “firsts” help us make sense of and better understand our everyday experiences back home. They help us step back and appreciate the profound beauty of our world, in an age where we can so often get wrapped up in the hustle and bustle of the everyday, and we return home from these incredible adventures forever changed. Travelling doesn’t need to end after your exchange or graduation trip are over and you’ve entered the working world. Sure, you can always take some vacation time, but don’t get stuck at a desk and forget opportunities that may exist within your career. You never know what kinds of travel opportunities may exist...

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International Student Explores the World

Posted by on 2:50 pm in News, Students | 0 comments

Hi, I’m a 4th year commerce international student from Fujian province in Southeast coast of China. This is the third time I participated in QUIC’s photo contest and I am very honored that I get a prize every year. I started photography 6 year ago, and my interest in photography originated from my love for travel. I started traveling a lot within China and abroad since middle school, when I travelled to different places I really wanted to keep the beautiful moments so that I would still remember them in the future. So my Dad, who also loves visiting new places, bought me my first DSLR. So far, I have been to 17 countries. I always bring a big backpack when I travel because I need to put the camera, lenses, sometimes tripod and lighting in it. As I’m quite slim even in Chinese standard, people often ask me how did I manage to bring such a heavy bag everywhere. But I love it. Also, photography has highly increased my patience. Sometimes I had to wait and search for a long time to find the perfect spot, no matter it was as cold as -40 degrees in Banff or as hot as 40 degrees in Dubai, I would not leave the place until I finally captured the scene I wanted.  I’m graduating next month and moving back to China after my final exams. I am sure I will remember my life at Queen’s every time I look at my photos of Lake Ontario and campus. My three years in Canada (I exchanged to National University of Singapore for a year) are so different from my life in China, and it will certainly become a special part of my life. Finally, I want to say thank you to QUIC for giving students who love photography a chance to show their works. Best regards, Iris Yiyu Jiang, Queen's Commerce '16          ...

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Queen’s Bangladeshi Students Association Event

Posted by on 3:37 pm in News | 2 comments

QBSA celebrates International Mother Language Day — by Zubair Hossain, international student The biggest annual event organized by Queen’s Bangladeshi Students Association (QBSA), a student club associated with Queen’s University International Centre (QUIC) is the celebration of the International Mother Language Day (IMLD). QBSA has been arranging this event every year since 2010 as a way to promote the linguistic and cultural diversity in Canada. This day is of great significance to Bangladeshis because we pay homage to our nation's heroes who in 1952 sacrificed their lives to protect our rights to speak in mother tongue, Bengali. After being recognized by UNESCO to promote the preservation and protection of all languages of the world, IMLD has been celebrated internationally by multicultural festivals which encourage the hearing of all voices, social cohesion, cultural awareness, and tolerance. Last Saturday IMLD 2016 was celebrated in McLaughlin Hall of John Deutsch University Centre. MP Mark Gerretsen, MPP Sophie Kiwala, Councillor Jim Neill and Director of Ban Righ Foundation Ms Carole Morrison were among the special guests who graced the event. International Mother Language Day has been proclaimed by City of Kingston this year. Kingston town crier Chris Whyman read the Certificate of Proclamation during the event. Along with Bangladeshi students and community, Queen’s students from different cultural backgrounds participated in this event with great enthusiasm. The program started with a chorus of IMLD theme song. The special guests addressed the audience and expressed their good wishes. MPP Kiwala distributed prizes among the participants of Kids Art Competition. After that the guests enjoyed a dinner with authentic Bangladeshi food. After dinner session was cultural performances by Bangladeshi and international performers from different countries including Iran, India, China and Egypt. There was a blend of songs, dances and poem recitals. This year for the first time QBSA shot a video featuring Queen’s students from different countries with short testimonials where they expressed love for their mother tongues in their own languages. Photo Album from the event can be viewed at Queen's University Flickr page....

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Announcing Photo Contest Winners 2016

Posted by on 1:13 pm in News | 0 comments

Many thanks to all students who participated in QUIC International Photo Contest! This is our 8th year running, and we love receiving your amazing images. 2016 Contest Winner: Sean Arruda, MSc'16 (Geography and Planning).   "I took this photo in August of 2013 while conducting undergraduate research at the Daring Lake Tundra Ecosystem Research Station, in Northwest Territories. This Dene tipi is erected each year as part of the Tundra Science and Culture Camp, an outdoor environmental education program for high school students in the NWT. Students work closely with a variety of instructors including scientists, environmental educators, on-site researchers and Dene elders. The tipi is used as a gathering space where the students participate in traditional knowledge activities such as cooking, beading, drum and tool building, sharing of stories and reflections. For the entire duration of my field season that year the sun hadn’t set, but this photo was taken in late August when we finally started getting a few hours of darkness at night. This allowed me to really capture the beautiful glow from both the fire within the tipi, and also the faint sunset behind the dark, cold clouds. The light streaks were produced by my headlamp as we danced around the tipi." Warmth in the Arctic by Sean Arruda Category Winners: People and Culture: Sean George PhD Candidate Chem.Eng.           Landscape & Nature: Shuhong Liu ArtSci'19             Home away from Home: Alex Peloso Med'18               Critical Global Issues: Corey Forster LifeSci'17             People's Choice: Justin Lim...

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Volunteer Opportunity @ QUIC Photo Contest

Posted by on 3:14 pm in News | 0 comments

The QUIC International Photo Contest is a juried contest. We have a volunteer opportunity for a student with interest and skills in photography. If you are a highly experienced photographer, or a Film & Media student, interested in becoming a member of the Judging Panel to select this year’s winning photos, please email by February 4, 2016 with your resume. Expected project time commitment is 6 hours. Successful candidate must be available on Tuesday, February 9th from 9 am – 1 pm. For more details about the Contest please click here....

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International Photo Contest: Submit your photos!

Posted by on 11:42 am in News | 0 comments

“We do not learn from experience. We learn from reflecting on experience.” ~John Dewey Students, this is your opportunity to share your photos from abroad, or your time in Canada. The Contest is open to those currently enrolled at Queen’s University. Students who have returned from an exchange or a work-abroad experience, and international students are encouraged to participate. Categories are: People and Culture Landscape (including nature and wildlife) Home away from Home Critical Global Issues 1 or 2 photos per person please.  CLICK HERE TO PARTICIPATE. Submission deadline: Thursday, January 28, 2016 (11:59 PM ET) Questions? Email This annual Contest has been running at the QUIC since 2009.  We thank our sponsors who contributed to winners’ prizes, namely the Campus Book Store, Kingston Henry’s and Camera Kingston. Last year, winning photos from Contest were featured at a public exhibit in downtown Kingston at the Steam Museum, in collaboration with City of Kingston Cultural...

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5 Ways to Connect with Friends & Family while Abroad

Posted by on 3:25 pm in News, Students | 0 comments

By: Candy Tse, QUIC World Link Volunteer, 2015-2016   When I went to on exchange to Grenoble, France, I made a promise to myself that I would stay connected with friends and family, call home at least every other day and set-up Skype dates with close friends every week. That promise was long-lived. As usual, life happens and work consumes most of your time. Sometimes, all the good intentions are there but it is just an unrealistic reality. My name is Candy Tse, a fourth year Concurrent Education student in Biochemistry and French. Being a relatively chill university student who tries to save as much money and use as minimal effort as possible, here are 5 quick and easy ways to stay connected with loved ones back home and now, friends I met on exchange: Thank Goodness For Social Media! Having just landed in a new place, the first thing I usually do is take a photo. I’m quite the photo addict if you ask anyone who knows me. But photos are one of the best ways to stay connected with little effort required. And with the help of social media nowadays: Snapchat, Instagram, Facebook and the list goes on, a picture snapped 2 seconds ago can be almost instantaneously shared by loved one thousands of miles away. As the saying goes, a photo is worth a thousand words so just a simple photo or Facebook album shows that you are thinking of friends and family and gives them the opportunity to still be apart of your life despite the distance.   Lets Hangout over the Internet. Everyone gets moments of loneliness while abroad. For those nights, it is comforting to know that you have the option to do a video call. Whether it is through Skpe or Google Hangout, video calls can range from low key, maybe you just want to have some company while you’re doing homework or more organized. For example planning a hangout session with 7 people from several different countries (I did this! Its totally possible!). Its always fascinating to see how different or similar things are in different countries.   Pay A Trip To The Post Office. Want to change things up and go a little old school? Postcards, letters and care packages are a great way to stay in touch with friends abroad while making it fun and exciting. I love the feeling of receiving a personalized postcard message from friends who are traveling or on exchange because you know they took the time to think about and write to you. It’s also a lot of fun looking at and buying funky personalized postcards to send to different friends. Therefore, in my opinion, it is a win-win situation for both sides. Yes, it may require you to spend a little more time but its totally worth it to know that they’ll be smiling on the other side.   Too Lazy To Read/Write? There were two very useful phone applications that I used during my year abroad. The first was WeChat, which I knew about before because my parents used it a lot with my relatives in China. WeChat was my main form of communication with my parents because it offered a very unique feature, voice-recordings, or as I like to call it,...

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QUIC Welcomes New Director

Posted by on 7:43 pm in News | 0 comments

The QUIC team is excited to welcome a new Director of the International Centre, Jyoti Kotecha, as of January 11, 2016. Jyoti completed her Bachelor of Science Honours degree at the University of Greenwich, in London, UK and her Master of Public Administration at Queen’s University. Since 2007, Jyoti has held the position of Assistant Director, Centre for Studies in Primary Care within the Queen’s Department of Family Medicine. In this role, Jyoti has amassed a tremendous amount of experience and demonstrated effectiveness in strategic visioning, human resource management, budget development, organizational leadership and work with both domestic and international students and scholars. Her work in this role required her to interact and collaborate with diverse staff and stakeholders in local, national and international contexts. Jyoti has developed intercultural knowledge and skills from both personal, professional and community engagements and experiences. The new Director at QUIC looks forward to welcoming and supporting all international students, so please feel free to drop by and say...

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Winter Tips from Student Volunteer

Posted by on 3:33 pm in News, Students | 0 comments

By: Megan Siddall, QUIC World Link Volunteer, 2014-2015 Please note: The ‘Learning to Love Winter’ Session for new international students (and other members of Queen’s international community such as spouses, post-doctoral fellows, researchers) is taking place on Wed. January 6th, 12:00 noon at the QUIC. All are welcome. The tantalizing feeling of snowflakes on your tongue, the light squish you hear beneath your first step into the seemingly sparkly white blanket, the excitement of seeing your breath rise slowly up into the air and disappear, the rosy cheeks you pass by on your morning commute to class – all these wonderful sensations only exist for a few months a year. But boy oh boy can those months seem to go on forever, and ever, and ever, and ever… you get my point. My name is Megan and I’m a Global Development student and World Link volunteer at QUIC. I spent last December along the coast of the Mediterranean on exchange, so I know adjusting to a Canadian winter will take some effort. For those of you who are experiencing your first ‘Canadian winter’, you may have all sorts of feelings: fear, wonder, happiness, dread. These feelings are to be expected for anyone hoping to cope with what can be the longest season in this beautiful country. I’ve always had a love – hate relationship with winter. Tobogganing in my humble opinion is the greatest sport ever invented. Skating can be the most elegant, competitive or feet freezing activity ever, yet lacing up skates to make your way down Alfred St. for class may not have been the snowy fantasy you envisioned.   Here is my Winter Wonderland Tip List to not let the winter winds get you down and to get the most out of whatever Kingston blows our way: Layering is key. Are you thinking about putting on long johns, 3 pairs of socks, and the warmest turtleneck you can find? Go for it, but also remember the steamy radiators blasting in Kingston Hall during your 3-hour class. Footwear – investing in anti-slip shoes is essential. All your body parts will thank you for this one – including your non-helmet wearing head. Kingston streets become skating rinks after melting/defrosting and as much as the University does a good job clearing the sidewalks on campus, the ones just around the corner of Stauffer are work of “Elsa” Go for a walk to City Hall and even strap on some skates to take advantage of the skating ring. We are extremely fortunate to have a beautiful town square where there always seems to be some ‘magic in the air’. Build a snowman on a study break. It can be at 3 in the morning when you see thick flakes falling to the ground on a sleepless night or after your 8:30 class that you barely made it to. It’s a great bonding activity not only with the snow but friends/housemates/strangers. So – you can no longer bike (safely) outdoors or go for a run without catching more than a drift… time to hit up the ARC. Definitely take advantage of the awesome facility we have for exercising. There are also great yoga studios like Studio 330 where you can drop in – only dependent on whether you can open your icy front...

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