Student Testimonials

Student Testimonials

Drew MacCannellThe single biggest problem that I faced in writing about my experiences at Bishop’s was that I had to do it in less than ten pages. I suppose the best place to start is to say that what makes Bishop’s different, perhaps unique, is the people who inhabit it. There is never a shortage of people who are not only willing, but eager to help you do just a little bit better. During the summers I spent at Bishop’s, I worked as a research assistant for Dr. Nelson, and co-authored a number of papers in astrophysics.

During the school semester, I worked as a teaching assistant in the first-year physics courses, where I learned to communicate complex ideas clearly. Both are opportunities that may not have been available to a young undergraduate student at another institution, and both of which have helped me to develop the skills that have proven to be vital today. Although Dr. Nelson was shaping me to become the scientist that I am today, he never tried to funnel me along one path. To the contrary: he urged me to pursue interests outside of astrophysics, and to expand my scope on a more multidisciplinary level. Because I was also working towards a minor in Biology, I pursued my studies in the area of biophysics. Instead of studying extremely large objects, I began studying some extremely small ones. I began applying the methods I had learned from him, such as computer simulations, to the world of physiology (cellular biology). This would ultimately form the basis of my doctoral (and now postdoctoral) work.

It may be a (very) slight exaggeration to say that my time at Bishop’s made me the man I am today. But I am not exaggerating in the least when I say that without the opportunities I had at Bishop’s, without the people I met there, without the work I’d done, and without the boundaries I’d expanded, I would not be where I am today. Drew MacCannell, '02 BSc., PhD. (University of Calgary, Faculty of Medicine)

Caroline FosterLet me start with a quote from the BU school song: ‘We will never graduate! We’ll stay here forevermore!’.

It was a bit worrying to hear those lyrics when I first came to Bishop’s as a frosh. However, it did not take long for me to understand why it is so hard to terminate the Bishop’s experience. I did both my undergraduate and Master’s degree in physics at Bishop’s. That means I spent a lucky 5 years there! Apart from its splendid beauty and lovely community, I found Bishop’s to be a very caring and active university. I was impressed at how events and club meetings were generally very well attended. While I was there, I got involved with Amnesty International, WUSC, and the refugee sponsorship committee on campus and cannot enumerate the benefits of joining these groups. On the academic side, small class sizes meant that teachers had time to answer questions, discuss ideas and learn my name! These discussions have had a significant impact on my choice to pursue astronomy as a career and finally leave Bishop’s to further my education. I am currently pursuing my PhD at Swinburne University, in Melbourne, Australia where I study extra-galactic astronomy. I found that my research experiences at Bishop’s, both as an undergraduate summer research assistant and as an MSc student studying the evolution of cosmic voids, as well as the opportunity to use the Bishop’s observatory have significantly helped prepare me for my future career as a scientist.

So as it says in the BU school song: I ‘Raise a toast to Bishop’s University!’ and especially to the physics department. Caroline Foster '05, BSc., '07, MSc., PhD Student at Swinburne University

Mark LearnedI have many fond memories of my years at Bishop’s University. The small class sizes and supportive professors made me feel part of an educational community instead of being just a student number on a list. As a Physics student at Bishop’s, I was able to learn a great deal through hands on applications in the labs; they helped make the most difficult concepts a lot easier to grasp. Whenever I needed extra help, I was welcomed with encouragement and support. It truly is amazing how much the faculty cares about students and their goals and they are always willing to go that extra mile see that those goals are reached. My BSc. in Physics helped me pursue a career in education and I have been working as a Physics and Math teacher for the past twelve years. As a Townshipper, born and raised near Bishop’s University, I am glad that I didn’t have look any further than my own backyard in order to get a fantastic education. To this day, I am still in contact with Dr. Nelson, the head of the Physics department. He has been extremely accommodating to my students and I by giving us outstanding multimedia presentations and tours of the newly constructed Observatory, as well as keeping us up to date about special events happening around the campus. I have always encouraged my students to enrol at Bishop’s University, as I am proud to have been a student at this wonderful.Mark Learned '95, BSc., '96, DipEd.
Michael JensenThe one thing I will remember most about Bishop’s is the shear amount of personal attention and encouragement I received from professors in all of the departments (most notably, Dr. Nelson in Physics, and Prof. Descoubet in Spanish). At Bishop’s the vast majority of the full time professors are absolutely committed to the success of the students, and the quality of their education.

Rest assured, if you are a student at Bishop’s, you will be given every opportunity to develop the academic and research skills that will give you the best possible chance of obtaining NSERC funding so that you can pursue your studies at the graduate level and beyond. These opportunities include teaching assistantships, tutoring positions, research assistantships, USRAs (Undergraduate Student Research Awards), and paid participation in national and international scientific conferences (all of which I received during my studies in the physics department).

As if this were not enough, you will also be permitted and even encouraged to pursue your other interests in completely unrelated faculties and play leadership roles in extra-curricular activities, resulting in a much more challenging, stimulating, and rewarding university experience. I studied Spanish and German, and sang with the outstanding university choir for three years. I also served on various committees and was involved in hiring a professor in the physics department (who later became my Honours thesis supervisor). Unfortunately I am no longer a student on this campus because I am pursuing my true passion in life (space engineering at the graduate level), but I will always cherish my memories as a Bishop’s student! Michael Jensen, '06 BSc., MEng student at U. Sherbrooke