University of Windsor
Founded in 1954 as a public university, the University of Windsor (UWindsor) is a comprehensive university located in the southernmost tip of Ontario.
It is a popular school with international students due to the area’s relatively low cost of living and excellent work opportunities, both during studies and post-graduation. Currently, 23% of students are international students.
It is important to understand that, like most Canadian universities in general, entry is quite selective and you will need the equivalent of a GPA 3.0 as a minimum to apply (and higher for some majors and options such as Co-Op).
One core strength of the university is the faculty of engineering, where a full suite of engineering programs are offered, including civil, electrical, environmental, industrial, and mechanical engineering programs. The mechanical engineering department offers several concentrations, including automotive engineering – this fits in well with two of Windsor’s largest employers, Chrysler and Ford Motors. Would-be pilots will love the Aeronautics Leadership program – the academic education is complemented by flight training offered by the college’s partner, Journey Air, at nearby Windsor International Airport, located 12km from the campus.
However, the UWindsor offers programs at undergraduate and graduate levels in many other fields other than engineering. Popular options include business administration, computer science, international relations, criminology, and many more. Many of the Bachelor’s degrees include a Co-Op option, making Windsor an excellent base for those African students wishing to gain professional experience in combination with a high-quality university education.
Master’s level programs are extremely affordable by both Canadian and international standards. The AACSB-accredited MBA and the LLM (Master of Law) programs represent particularly good value for money.
African students have access to all programs, though there are a limited number of places for international students on Windsor’s education and nursing programs.
All African students applying to join a Bachelor’s degree from the Fall term are automatically considered for the Open Entrance Scholarship, worth up to CAD $2,000 per semester and renewable annually. Learn more about all the scholarships available at the Windsor university website. International students from Africa can also apply for international excellence scholarships that offer another $2,500 CAD per semester and renewable for four years.
Applicants for research-based master’s and PhD programs may also qualified for a renewable open entrance scholarship of CAD $7,500 per year. These students may also be eligible for departmental scholarships. These awards are highly competitive and it is important to remember that graduate programs are quite affordable even if you do not qualify for a scholarship. Graduate students, learn about UWindsor scholarships and other opportunities.
Windsor is a relatively small university town with approximately 217,000 inhabitants. The town holds a highly strategic position across the River Detroit from the US city of Detroit, Michigan. The Detroit-Windsor crossing is the most important border crossing between the USA and Canada, responsible for one third of trade between the two countries. The huge volumes of trade that flow through Windsor as a result of this crossing mean that the town has a below-average unemployment rate. African students will also have plentiful opportunities to seek part-time jobs during their studies, Co-Op opportunities through some of the majors offered at UWindsor and, of course, full-time employment post-graduation.
Windsor is the southernmost urban area in Canada – it may surprise you to know that it is on the same latitude as Northern California! Therefore Windsor does not typically experience the harsh winters that many regions of Canada do each year. The winter temperatures are of course still cold for most African students but the milder temperatures in Windsor will be easier to adapt to!
Despite the high employment rate in Windsor, the cost of living is affordable, especially when compared to major cities such as Toronto and Vancouver.
UWindsor students have access to the well-equipped Wellness Centre, where you will have access to cardio equipment and free weights and where you can also sign up for different types of fitness classes. Those who are particularly skillful in their chosen sport may wish to try out for one of the university’s sports teams. The Lancers compete in soccer, volleyball and track & field athletics to name just three sports. Those who like to participate in sports at a less competitive level may wish to join the various Intramural competitions – as well as traditional sports, those who prefer a more laid-back approach may appreciate the e-sport intramurals!
There are over 200 student clubs to choose from on campus, so there is plenty to keep you entertained. For a full list of clubs, go to https://uwsa.ca, but the Caribbean African Organization of Students will definitely be a home from home for African students.
UWindsor offers 4 different residence halls on campus, each accommodating between 150 and 350 students. Each of the residence halls will give you the chance to be at the center of campus life and just a few minutes’ walk from your classes, the library, the fitness center and more.
First year students can choose between Cartier, Alumni and MacDonald Halls, each of which offer slightly different types of accommodation. Cartier and Alumni Halls offers suite-style apartments for 2 students. You will have your own semi-private room and share a bathroom with your room-mate. You will also have access to a student lounge with TV, communal kitchen space and communal laundry facilities. MacDonald Hall is a traditional residence hall providing single or twin rooms; all facilities, including bathrooms, student lounge and kitchen space are shared facilities.
The fourth residence hall, Laurier, is available to students after the first year. It is a traditional halls of residence, offering single rooms. All facilities, including bathrooms, kitchen space, laundry facilities and student lounge are communal areas. Laurier Hall also hosts the International Student Centre – the go-to place for information and assistance for all international students.
All students choosing to live on campus must purchase a meal plan. There are four different meal plans (Minimum, Light, Full and Plus) to choose from, depending on your appetite and budget. The meal plans can be used at some local restaurants off-campus, in addition to the main on-campus cafeteria, Bru.
Upon completion of your Bachelor or Master’s program, you will have the right to apply for a Post Graduation Work Permit (PGWP), which will allow you to work in Canada for up to 3 years. This is an excellent opportunity to gain valuable work experience in your chosen field, while also earning a salary. Students who successfully take advantage of PGWP may begin the process of applying for permanent residency in Canada after 2-years of full-time employment.