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University of British Columbia

The University of British Columbia (UBC) is one of Canada’s oldest universities, and originally only focused on medicine, theology, and law. Today, UBC offers over 500 degrees across its two campuses in Vancouver and Kelowna.

The university has a strong reputation and the size of the university shows how many people want to study here, particularly international students, with 28.85% of UBC students coming from abroad. It ranks 3rd on Macleans Medical Doctorate Ranking, 37th and 46th in the world in both Times Higher Education and QS World University Rankings, respectively. Its Engineering degrees rank amongst the top 10 globally (QS, 2022) and its Business & Economics rank 28th (THE, 2021).

The size has not limited the learning landscape, however, as UBC has addressed this by adding more student-focused learning environments and by engaging the wider local communities as partners with the university. 


UBC is split across two campuses:

  • Vancouver Campus - 30 minutes from downtown Vancouver, it is the primary learning centre for students at UBC and is more than 400 hectares in size. It is home to the TRIUMF building, a world-leading laboratory for subatomic physics, the UBC Library and the Beaty Biodiversity Museum, containing Canada’s largest blue whale skeleton.
  • Okanagan Campus - a more intimate space for learning, it is over four hours from the main campus by car and in the town of Kelowna, just 3 hours away from 5 of Canada’s largest ski resorts. There are 63 undergraduate programmes that operate from here under 9 faculties and schools.

UBC Library is Canada’s second largest research library and impressively hosts over 7 million publications, and even has a traditional Japanese garden to relax in and admire.

The SkyTrain also connects the Vancouver campus to the city and a student’s U-pass will also save money on commuting in and out of the city.

Startup Business Support

UBC has extensive support for students who wish to push themselves towards developing their own business ideas. Their entrepreneurship@UBC is an innovation platform that has already seen $1.39 billion financing raised, $116 million generated in revenue and 989 jobs created. These successes could only be achieved through the university’s networks of connections from their position as one of the world’s top 40 research universities.

The student journey begins with ideation and ends with launch and funding, and there are even dedicated spaces for ventures at both the Vancouver and Okanagan campuses in the form of Innovation UBC hubs, and the Graham Lee Innovation Centre.

Research And Development

As with any eminent university, research plays an enormous part of everyday life at UBC, with $672.7 million in research funding at their disposal. This means students should be encouraged to take part in research in their time at UBC and with 1,424 research projects with industry partners, and 1,243 research contracts with governments and nonprofits, the systems are very much in place to make students succeed in this endeavour.

UBC also offer extensive support for researchers with the VPRI Research and Innovation Portfolio who can help with conducting research, attracting funding, managing funds, connection-building, and more.

Job Placement

Co-op courses are popular at UBC and create work-ready graduates by blending their classroom learning with paid work experience positions and placements. Students who go through these courses are not only more experienced in the world of industry, but can usually command higher starting salaries.

UBC currently ranks 38th in the world for graduate employability (QS, 2022) and this high rank is achieved in no small part because of the university’s commitment towards challenging their students to participate in placements, startup programmes, research projects, and the high level of overall academia. Career services are also in place to guide students through the steps they can take to increase their chances at employment post-graduation.

Student Life

Vancouver is an excellent place to base one’s studies, as it is a safe and multicultural city on the west-coast of Canada and is surrounded by spectacular areas of natural beauty. Vancouver also has the most temperate climate of all of the cities in Canada, and UBC itself is situated on a peninsula surrounded by water and forests. The border of the United States of America is just a stone’s throw away meaning that the opportunity to visit the neighbouring city of Seattle is just a 2.5 hour car journey away.  

There is a youthful culture to the region and it is reflected in the number of restaurants, cafes, galleries, bars, museums, cinemas, and parks in the area. Sports is also a large aspect of life at UBC, with the Thunderbirds and Heat varsity teams putting on impressive performances and backed by the large student support.

Why should you choose this university?

The University of British Columbia is a prestigious and well-respected university in the academic community, as displayed by their consistent high placement amongst various ranking bodies. 

Both of UBC’s campuses are well-maintained and scenic destinations to base one’s studies; Vancouver and Kelowna offer students the chance to balance fine academic work with connections to the wider communities as shown through the startup schemes and research partnerships. 

Graduates from UBC can expect to be fully qualified and work-ready by the time they move on to the next phases of their life and continued support is offered from the university throughout the educational process. 

UBC is a fine establishment that has met the challenges of its own success and continues to impress employers, academics, peers, and both domestic and international students alike.


Ranking BodyYearRanking Number
World University Ranking (QS)202246
World University Ranking (QS)202145
World University Ranking (QS)202051
World University Ranking (QS)201947
World University Ranking (QS)201851