From Queen’s University through Grenoble EM to PwC, Toronto : A Canadian view of studying in France

Study abroad experience from Canadian students



Trisha Egberts from Canada in GrenobleFor the last few months I have been publishing a series of discussions and photos from French students that have been studying at our partner institutions. From this week, I will be publishing a series of stories from international students who have come to study in France.

The first of these is from Trisha Egberts, a Canadian who used her study abroad opportunity at Queen’s University to come and find out about life in a French business school.     


In 2011, Trisha Egberts, decided to come a study at Grenoble EM for one semester. Encouraged by her home institution, Queen’s University, Canada and driven by a childhood desire to live it France, she choose Grenoble because she wanted to live somewhere a little different to large capitals like Paris.     

“It was the most incredible experience I could have thought of. I had innumerable opportunities to travel, meet new people, learn new things, and simply explore.” says Trisha.

Exchange program at Queen's University, Kingston, Ontario

“The school was great,” she says “situated in the incredibly picturesque town of Grenoble.”

Place Grenette, Grenoble

“Grenoble is a fun student town filled with friendly people, great food, a variety of shopping, and a beautiful view of the Alps all around.”


Her management courses were in English. Even though having grown up in Canada, she already spoke some French. Despite this she says that there were still some cultural barriers to overcome. Sometimes working in groups was challenging and you needed to adapt to the way other cultures work. Her home university had prepared her for that though. Trisha also says that you need to understand that life is not as frenetic as in some of the larger cities.

Skiing in Europe

“My friends and I were able to attend classes, practice our french, eat cheese, wine and baguettes, ski in the Alps, and travel across Europe, all at the same time.”


Indeed, like many international students, Trisha made the most of her time in a foreign country by travelling as much as possible.

“I can’t explain how nice it was for me to be able to see Europe for the first time while I was studying.”

Visiting Paris for students

“From Grenoble, I was able to travel to 10 other countries.”…

Students travelling in Europe while studying

….”I got to take a sip of coffee outside the Collisseum in Rome, browse the bazaars in Istanbul, visit the Eiffel Tower in Paris, drink beer in Prague, and climb La Bastille in Grenoble.”


Today, Trisha works for the accountancy firm PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC). Based in Toronto she is in daily contact with people from many different parts of the world. She says that her exchange has helped her greatly in working in this international environment. One added bonus is that during her time in Grenoble she became close friends with someone who now works for PwC in London. They stay in touch to talk about how their work is going and from time to time to reminisce about their experience in France.

PwC Toronto

“My four months in Grenoble were some of the best in my life, and I won’t be forgetting those memories and friendships anytime soon” concludes Trisha.


Next week: David Reyna gives Mexican perspective about student life in France and at Grenoble EM.

See also:

A Year in the Merde

The Cultureur: “It’s a comical tale that chronicles the misadventures of a British marketing bloke as he runs rampant through the streets of Paris and maneuvers his way through the provocative behaviors, distinct mannerisms, and unique habits of the French.”

Why France?

Hannah goes to France: “Perhaps the experience that most led me to apply for TAPIF happened during the Spring of my junior year, when I studied abroad in Grenoble, France. It was truly the greatest five months of my life, and once I left I knew that I had to return to France as soon as possible, not to visit, but to live.”

Maureen & Stephen Walsh: ” Whereas, when we had arrived in France, we were always saying, “In America…”, now we find ourselves saying, “In France…” We ask  forgiveness of our American friends if we make these comparisons to you, and we hope you can try to understand the loss we feel. For those of you who have been asking us what else we will miss about France, we’ve come up with a short list.”

An (a)Typical Monday in Toulouse

See and be Seen: “The thing about my days, whether they are stateside or abroad, is that they’re always atypical. Life is too short for boring routines. I prefer the stimulation of hassle, stress and bedlam. So, here’s the presumed itinerary for tomorrow, the lovely Monday the 25th of February.”

UK student Leanne Dickinson on living and studying in France

Textbooks and Passports: “In France, says Leanne, “there is a lot of contact time and note-taking.” The university system “seems to tie you a lot more”. This contrasts with the British system.”

Niché Bragahi: How my studies in France encouraged me to pursue a career in teaching

Textbooks and Passports: “Studying abroad, according to Niché, “is about going out of your comfort zone, discovering new things, developing your linguistic skills”

Why Study Abroad as a College Student?

William Penn University Study Abroad: “You never know what will happen in life. I’ve heard of many friends who have graduated from high school or college and then settled down right away to get married and have kids. Your time in college is when you are free to do things for you.”


International students in Canada Studying at Birmingham University International students in Turkey

Queen’s University

University of Birmingham

Koç University





Filed under Business Schools, Careers, Countries, Culture, Education, Europe, Exchange study programs, France, Higher Education, Intercultural, International studies, Leadership, Management, Society, Study Abroad, Travel

7 responses to “From Queen’s University through Grenoble EM to PwC, Toronto : A Canadian view of studying in France

  1. Pingback: French Management Schools: Stop apologizing! | GlobalEd

  2. Pingback: David Reyna, chemical engineer, business student, strategic planner and lover of spicy food: A Mexican view of studying in France | GlobalEd

  3. I live in Grenoble(my birthplace) and this made me laugh a bit 🙂 Each years we, Grenoblois (people who live in Grenoble), see a lot of foreign students coming in the city. It’s very fun because in the bus sometimes you are the only one French. 😀

    • Mark Thomas

      You are right; Grenoble is a very cosmopolitan city. The official fugures say there are about 10 000 international students here and 500 foreign owned companies. You often hear lots of different lnaguages being spoken in the street.

      My very first blog posting “French Management Schools: Stop apologizing!” was partly inspired by a visitor jokingly asking me if there were any French people who worked at my school.

      Thanks for reading and for your comments.

  4. Pingback: Photo of the week : Grenoble EM on the NASDAQ | GlobalEd

  5. Pingback: An American View of Studying in France: Anuja Parikh, a student from University of Florida talks about her international exchange at Grenoble EM | GlobalEd

  6. Pingback: “Innovative and dynamic employees required.” Navir Rustomfram-Shukla, A GEM Alumnus (MIB ’09) talks about his work at Airbus. | GlobalEd

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