Getting into McGill, one of Canada’s most prestigious universities




Graduated from McGill University in 2010

McGill University is a respected school with a notable reputation for research and academic excellence not only within Canada but also worldwide. The best college admissions consultants agree that getting into McGill is very competitive. As a Canadian high school student, I had already decided McGill University, located in the French-speaking province of Quebec, was my top choice.

Why McGill? The English-language college is ranked 31st in the world and consistently within the top 3 universities in Canada. Besides its exceptional ranking, McGill is in one of the most cosmopolitan and exciting cities in the world, Montreal. Studying at McGill was a no-brainer. But how to get in?

I promptly sought out admissions consulting to get the run-down on how to get into McGill. The university counseling gave me both some good and not-so-good news.

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The good news is that colleges like McGill in Quebec don’t require SATs to get in, at least if you’re Canadian or an international student. However, McGill’s college admission team pays special attention to grade averages. The not-so-good news: as I was beginning my last year of high school, it meant buckling down and earning those top grades. University admissions consultants will tell you that if you hope to get into McGill, you’ll need at least an average of 90% coming out of high school. Undergraduate students entering McGill have the highest averages of any school in the country.

Admission experts could also confirm that I only needed English as a core course, as I was applying to the Faculty of Arts because I wanted to major in political science. I was relieved because I was terrible at math and science, and in the province of Ontario, where I went to high school, I could opt out of these classes if I didn’t think I’d need them.

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At last, I obtained a 91% average, and along with a couple of extracurricular activities recommended by the college admissions counselor, I expected to get accepted. All I had to do was keep up my grades, and I’d be living in Montreal, attending McGill University in less than six months.

With my goal set, I worked hard to maintain my grades. In the spring, an envelope came in the mail from McGill. They officially accepted me. Thanks to college counseling, there had always been a direct path for me to get into McGill. Once I got there, I was thrilled to have studied so tirelessly because living in Montreal and going to McGill for the next four years was a dream come true.

Optional: In another blog, I’ll share what life as a McGill student in Montreal was like, so check back again to read more about living in one of Canada’s best cities.