Student Testimonials



Andre (Andy) Montenegro, Brazil

This university has an excellent reputation in Canada. Their MBA program is accredited by ACBSP, which reinforces its seriousness. Also, there is an option that you can add some classes to obtain a dual degree. And the program price matches my budget.
I believe that the teachers’ support and availability have been the most important part of my ESL studies at VIU. To be honest, if you need support, there will always be someone to help you.
And my advice for new students joining VIU? Remember that you are living in another culture, and you are interacting with people from all over the world. Thus, always be open-minded and respectful. It will prevent you from being biased or worse.
Of course, you need to be focused on your studies, but try your best to enjoy your stay as much as you can. Vancouver Island is a beautiful region, and there are many activities to do.
(Grad Prep, MBA)

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Jason Doan, Vietnam

Grad Prep is not simply an ESL course. It prepared me with academic language skills, such as writing in APA style and skimming readings, and that helped with every assignment and group project in my MBA program.
I believe this course is very useful and necessary for international students who want to pursue higher level studies in Canada.
(Grad Prep + MBA)

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Enrique Pecellin Rosas, Mexico

Studying abroad was my dream since I was in secondary school. I wanted to study in Canada because I knew it was a peaceful country with a high level in education. And when I was looking for a university at the University Expo in my country I found VIU. I searched for it and I liked the campus and the small town where it was. The fact that it was in a small town was important, because I was looking for a different place with different activities compared to Mexico.
I found VIU so helpful for students who want to improve their English skills. They always offer academic activities and this is good.
The most positive experience I have had is meeting people from around the world. I found it amazing that you do not ask your classmates which city they come from. Instead, you ask: which country are you from? That is amazing.
(University Preparation 5, BBA)

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Gunel Gafarli

Gunel Gafarli, Azerbaijan

Studying at VIU is a real opportunity for me. Not only do I have the opportunity to learn from highly skilled professors and teachers but also I have the great opportunity to learn from valuable experiences. I also learned a lot from my ESL classes which I could use in my academic classes. I learned about writing styles in ESL and I had no trouble understanding the material that was taught. As a Tourism student at VIU, I have the opportunity to take a Co-op and gain work experience in the tourism sector which will be a huge benefit to help me find a job after graduation.

I recommend all international students to take ESL classes before starting academic classes. ESL classes helped me to improve my English, prepared me for my academic classes, and gave me an opportunity to gain experience in many areas. I learned a lot from AP5 classes which gave me an advantage when I started academic classes. I already knew how to write an argumentative essay and work with “Works Cited.”
By attending ESL classes, I also had the chance to learn about Canada and Canadian culture. We attended many events and trips organized for ESL students. Besides, I gained many friends from my ESL classes and I had the chance to learn from students from different cultures. That was a great experience, as well. So, I do strongly suggest every international student take Academic Preparation classes before starting their Academic classes.
(ESL, ITAS)

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Risa Meura

Risa Meura, Japan

It was such a memorable experience to study at VIU’s English Language Centre. I loved taking ESL class because it was not only about studying English, but also about learning different cultures from other classmates, which was really interesting. I had many things to absorb from them. Since they apply small-class teaching, the distance between teachers and students is close. I felt the teachers were very friendly and welcoming.It was very hard for me to graduate from AP5 because we had a strong bond among all the classmates and the teacher.

At the semester celebration, I played the guitar with my two Chinese friends, and I am so glad that I performed it because it was one of my dreams to play the guitar with international friends. It is quite amazing how various the opportunities are that you can have by learning English. I am very grateful to everyone I met here for those irreplaceable memories.

(ESL, Business English, Expo)

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Dadi (Damon) Zhao, China

I am Dadi Zhao. I also go by Damon.

Two of my sisters got their MBA degree at VIU so it was not hard for me to get a true impression of VIU.

The size of the classes is one of the most attractive factors for me because, from my perspective, having more chances to communicate with teachers is more suitable for me. And the reputation of the MBA degree at VIU is pretty nice in Canada.

For me, my teachers' patience and enthusiasm were a treasure for me.

I also met some local people in society and they are good and open. But I feel that most of them are not that patient for people whose English ability is not good enough. That is understandable and I mean no offence in saying that. Compared with the atmosphere in my ESL classes, living in Nanaimo is helping me to experience real Canadian life.

I have a lot of advice for future students.

Canada is a multicultural country, so being open does not only mean being able to embrace new things but also understanding the differences. Your classmates definitely grew up in a different cultural background. Sometimes, being a listener is a good way to make yourself become more open.
At the same time, being "shameless" in some situations is necessary. Your mission in ESL is learning English and the key point of learning a language is using it. DO NOT feel shy when it is your time to express yourself and grab every chance to communicate and learn. We are not native English speakers and none of our classmates will be either. He or she may be able to speak English smoothly and soon you will also be able to do that.
(AP5, Grad Prep & MBA)

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Saeed Tehrani, Iran

I chose to study at VIU because the city is quiet and so beautiful. The people are super friendly and they treated me warmly.
I would encourage students to think of their ESL studies as an opportunity. Studying ESL at VIU has prepared me for my academic course.
(Grad Prep + MBA)

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Sachiko Ishibashi

Sachiko Ishibashi, Japan

My experiences in the ESL program and Bachelor of Tourism Management in VIU have been fascinating. The ESL program was the hardest but a valuable experience which helped me to succeed in my academic studies.
For Tourism, each instructor was very knowledgeable and skillful with a passion in their specialized field. Every minute in all my classes was remarkable.
(Academic Preparation and Bachelor of Tourism Management)

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Constanza Eganz, Chile

I chose to study at VIU because their courses have a direct link with the professional world and the labour market.
My advice to new students is to follow the rhythm of the ESL classes, perform the assigned tasks and take advantage of the tools that the Learning Centre offers.
(University Preparation)

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