Connecting Policy, History, and Culture on Duke in Montréal

By Alina Pak

Montreal waterfall

Here you can behold the beauty of Montmorency Falls—a natural wonder located just outside Quebec City, the provincial capital. The Montmorency and St. Lawrence rivers shaped Quebec’s trade and economy, serving as waterway transport for wood, one of Canada’s natural resources. 

Through Duke in Montreal, I spent part of July in Quebec City studying economic and cultural development of the region and meeting with such figures as the Minister of International Relations and the U.S. Consul General.

By studying linguistic and cultural policies in Quebec, I learned about the role of provincial government in social changes that occurred during the last 50 years. Understanding local cultures and their primary role in development is one of my main takeaways from the program, and I’m positive that it will enrich my time at Duke with a new academic perspective. Moreover, this perspective has solidified my interest in policy as a means of making the most out of our historical and cultural resources.

As a piece of advice for everyone studying abroad, I would recommend to look for connections between what you’re learning on site and the rest of the world—these connections will make many of your amazing experiences useful in academic and professional careers!


Alina Pak
Public Policy Studies, Class of 2018
Duke in Montreal, Summer 2016
Duke in D.C.: Policy, Leadership, & Innovation, Spring 2017

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