Local Atmosphere

Location
Montreal, QC
Undergrads
20,181
Tuition (in-state)
$16,360 ($5,378)
Admission Difficulty
Average
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Reviews

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4 Recent Alumnus

Local Atmosphere: Lots to do and friendly people.

2 people found this useful Report
4 College Sophomore

Local Atmosphere: Knowing how to speak French isn't a necessity, but it would definitely come in handy and open up many opportunities to you not available to strictly-English-speaking students.

3 people found this useful Report
5 College Senior

Local Atmosphere: Amazing city to live in. Plenty of nightlife & dining options, and really easy to walk, bike, cab, metro to them. Beautiful campus situated right next to Mont Royal - which has a giant park with activities in every season.

5 College Freshman

Local Atmosphere: Very positive atmosphere. Montreal is a very fun city.

5 College Freshman

Local Atmosphere: You have everything you could need and want here in Montreal, and many of those opportunities come from within McGill.

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Student Author OverviewWhat's This?

Kelly Baker
Hometown
Weston, CT
Major
Sociology
View all previous student authors

Montréal is one of the most cosmopolitan cities in North America. The nightlife, the shopping, the restaurants, and the culture make this one of the most exciting cities for a student to live in. To top it off, it has one of the lowest cost of living for a city of its size. Along with McGill, Montréal is the home of many other universities and colleges. Accordingly, the shops, bars, and restaurants often specifically target students with special discounts and specials. Montréal is a student's paradise; with the drinking age set at 18 and relatively loose attitudes towards marijuana, the party here really doesn't stop unless you want it to. When it comes down to it, Montréal makes McGill.

Besides the plethora of things to do, the other defining characteristic of Montréal is its French roots. While it is a bilingual city for all practical purposes, its official language is French. The English language also carries the stigma of oppression, as up until the 1960s, Québec's natural and labor resources were exploited by English-speaking businessmen from outside the region. Despite vast improvements in the past 30 years, there is still an undercurrent of hostility. Class discussions about Québec identity and history can get very heated, and many native Montrealers look down upon Anglo-McGill. However, despite the occasional culture clash, the experience of living in a place where you are the foreign minority is a learning experience definitely worth having.

Facts & Statistics

Fun Local Trivia
  1. Its official language is French, but most inhabitants are bilingual.
  2. The prohibition movement in the United States turned Montréal into a haven for Americans looking for alcohol.
  3. Montréal is home to an underground city with shopping malls, hotels, banks, offices, museums, universities, seven Métro stations, two commuter train stations, a bus terminal, and the Bell Centre hockey arena. Not all of it is actually underground, though.
  4. Montréal has the highest concentration of post-secondary students of all major cities in North America.
  5. Montréal is a popular filming location. Major motion pictures that have filmed partly or entirely in Montréal include The Aviator, The Bone Collector, Catch Me If You Can, Cellular, The Day after Tomorrow, Heist, John Q., The Notebook, Rollerball, Secret Window, The Sum of All Fears, and The Terminal. The Jackal, The Whole Nine Yards, and Taking Lives had scenes set in the city.
Notable Natives
  • Pierre Bouvier - frontman of Simple Plan and songwriter
  • Leonard Cohen - poet and singer
  • Celine Dion - singer
  • Corey Hart - singer
  • John Molson - brewing tycoon, railway and steamship line builder
  • Sam Roberts - musician
  • William Shatner - actor, best known for playing Captain Kirk in "Star Trek"
  • Rufus Wainwright - singer/songwriter
Local Slang
  • Anglophone: Used to describe English-speaking residents/establishments
  • Dépanneur (Dep): Small convenience stores found on nearly every block of the city, best places to buy cheap beer
  • Eh?: To be put at the end of a statement to turn it into a question. "It's cold outside, eh?" Mastering the "eh?" is an art form. First Nations people
  • Francophone: Commonly used as a noun to refer to the French-speaking residents or establishments
  • Keener: Nerd or teacher's pet
  • Ma blond: My girlfriend
  • Mon chum: My boyfriend
  • SAQ: The official, government-regulated liquor stores of Québec; only place to find name brand liquor and fine wines
  • Toque: A winter hat (rhymes with puke)
  • Trainers: Sneakers
Points of Interest
  • Biodome
  • Montreal Museum of Fine Art
  • Montreal Science Center
  • Mount Royal
  • Musée d'Art Contemporain de Montréal
  • Old Montreal
  • Olympic Stadium
Shopping Centers
  • Complexe Dejardins
  • Eaton Center
  • Place Alexis Nihon
Movie Theaters
AMC Forum 22
2313 Rue Sainte-Catherine Ouest
Montreal
(514) 904-1250
Movie Theaters
Cinema Banque Scotia Montreal
977 rue Ste. Catherine O., Montreal
Montreal
(514) 842-0549
Movie Theaters
Cinema du Parc
3573 Ave. Du Parc
Montreal
(514) 281-1900
Major Sports Teams
  • Montréal Alouettes – CFL: Canadian Football League
  • Montréal Canadiens: hockey
Distances to Nearest Major Cities
  • Boston: MA: 5 hours, 15 minutes
  • Toronto: ON: 6 hours

Student Polls

Rate the local atmosphere on the following topics    Based on 24 responses

Very poor
Excellent
  • Cost of living
  • Dining
  • Friendliness of locals toward students
  • Museums/cultural attractions
  • Nightlife
  • Parking
  • Parks and recreation
  • Professional sports
  • Safety
  • Scenery
  • Shopping
  • Transportation

What is the local atmosphere like at your school?    Based on 26 responses

  • 0% Painfully remote.
  • 0% In or near a big city, but there's not much to do off campus.
  • 8% Small town with plenty of charm.
  • 0% Vibrant college town. There's no big city, but there are plenty of things to do off campus.
  • 92% City living at its finest. There's always something fun and interesting going on.

What is the proximity to other universities? Is there much interaction?    Based on 26 responses

  • 8% There aren't any nearby schools.
  • 23% There are nearby schools, but students do NOT interact much.
  • 69% There are nearby schools that students often interact with.

Can you see yourself living here after graduation?    Based on 26 responses

  • 15% No way.
  • 35% Maybe, if I could find a good job.
  • 50% Totally.

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