Toronto ranks among best Canadian cities for students

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The Six finds itself in the top 10 in a recent ranking of the best student cities in Canada.

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A recent report from HelloSafe, a platform that compares insurance and personal financial products, looked at factored four categories of criteria — quality of life, student life, attractiveness and academic excellence — which were further broken and rated on 50 points, giving the cities a chance at a final grade of 200.

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Toronto placed in 10th, down five spots from 2021.

The city took last place in the quality of life category, which factors in monthly rental costs, the number of residents, access to nature, the climate and the air quality and environmental contamination.


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Toronto fared better with its attractiveness, taking the 11th spot, thanks to its accessibility, the average household income, the unemployment rate and the number of other big cities within a 500-km radius.

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Toronto came in ninth when it comes to academic excellence and the cost of studying, factoring in the number of universities in the city, school fees for the 2022-23 fall term and its academic ranking by “reputation” from McLean’s magazine.

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Student life is where the city really shines, coming in second (after Montreal). The report examined the number of students within the city, the proportion of students within the city’s total population, its restaurant and bar life as well as cultural offerings like museums, theatres and other events.

Overall, Kingston was tops, moving up two spots from 2021 and taking over from Sherbrooke as Canada’s best student city.

It has an “overall balance that allows it to rank well everywhere, whether in terms of academic excellence, student life, living environment or attractiveness,” according to HelloSafe Canada’s editor in chief, Alexandre Desoutter.

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Montreal came in second, followed by Vancouver, Sherbrooke and Calgary.

For the complete listing of the 47 cities and how they scored, check it out here.

As for the best cities to study in Ontario, they are:

1. Kingston

2. Hamilton

3. Toronto

4. Ottawa

5. Guelph

6. Waterloo

7. London

8. St. Catharines

9. Windsor

10. Peterborough

11. Sudbury

12. Thunder Bay

13. North Bay

14. Oshawa

15. Sault Ste. Marie


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