Black student holds arms out in welcome standing in front of the rainbow stairs

Free stuff, academic supports & making new friends

August 31, 2022

Student Pulse News: August 31, 2022

Are you ready to start the school year? Whether you’re looking for some free kitchenware or other household supplies, to meet new friends or get some extra support academically, you’ll find info on how to access of these things in this newsletter.

The Student Pulse is delivered to your inbox every two weeks throughout the school year. 

Need to know

Set up your digs at the Student Free Store 🏠

Do you need kitchen supplies or other household items for your place? VIU’s Welcome Centre (Building 300, next to the cafeteria) is hosting a Student Free Store on September 8 and 9 from 9 am to 4 pm. Come grab what you need to finish setting up your digs - all for free!

RockVIU new student orientation 🎥

There’s still lots happening this week as part of RockVIU new student orientation! Some not-to-miss events: the Connect Fair Carnival happens Thursday, September 1 at the Nanaimo campus and the Summer Nights Festival and Drive-in Movie night happens in Cowichan on September 1 and in Nanaimo on Friday, September 2. More info is available on the RockVIU homepage.

Welcome Week: September 6, 7 and 8 

During the first week of school thousands of students come through the front doors of the VIU Students’ Union (Building 193) to buy textbooks, bus passes, manage their health and dental plan, and visit the campus pub. Throughout this week we create a festive atmosphere with music, interesting vendors and giveaways for students in front of our building from 10 am to 2 pm.

Participate in VIU’s brand refresh ✏️

We want to hear your thoughts on the stories VIU should be sharing to promote our institution, refine our brand position and build on our University’s deep commitment to people, place and potential. We are working with an external agency to gather feedback and perspectives from a wide range of individuals and groups on campus to help us update our VIU brand. Anyone interested in participating should submit their contact information by Friday, September 2.


Fall recreation programs – register soon! 🏀🏐

Get fit, get active, have fun! VIU Athletics & Recreation offers a wide variety of outdoor recreation programs, fitness classes, intramural sports tournaments and special events for the Fall Semester.

  • Registration for intramurals, which includes basketball, volleyball and indoor soccer leagues, opens on Friday, September 2. Sign up as an individual or an entire team.
  • Registration for guided outdoor recreation programs (surfing, hiking, kayaking and more) and fitness classes (yoga, bootcamp, spin and core, and more) opens on Friday, September 9. 

Check out all the options in the activity guide. To register online, visit and follow the instructions to create an account on ActiveNet. Students can also register in-person at the VIU Gym front desk (Building 190).

VIU Mariners Soccer – Home opening weekend ⚽️

Soccer fans: it’s time to head to the pitch to cheer on your VIU Mariners! The Mariners kick off the 2022 PACWEST varsity soccer season at 3 pm on Saturday, September 10 with concurrent men’s and women’s games versus the Capilano Blues at the Beban Park Turf Fields (2253 Dorman Road). On Sunday, September 11, the Mariners and Blues renew their rivalry at Q’unq’inuqwstuxw (NDSS) Turf Field – less than a 10-minute walk from the VIU dorms! Women kick off at 3 pm, followed by the men’s match at 5 pm. VIU soccer games are free for all to attend. For team schedules, visit

FROSH Week 2022: September 20, 21 and 22 🥳

FROSH Week 2022 is an exciting, VIUSU-organized, three-day festival to celebrate and welcome all new and returning students at Vancouver Island University:

  • Paint your FROSH: September 20, 3 to 6 pm in the RBC Plaza (beside the bus loop).
  • Pancake breakfast: September 21 from 8 to 11 am (or until we run out) outside the VIU Students’ Union (Building 193).
  • Outdoor concert: featuring DiRTY RADiO, WASAKAKA and Anushka Kashyap. September 22, 4 to 9 pm in the RBC Plaza (beside the bus loop).

All Nations Feast 

On September 15 from 10 am to 3 pm come to Shq’apthut as we honour the four Nations on Vancouver Island: The Coast Salish, Kwakwaka’wakw, Nuu-chah-nulth and Métis. The event is free and there will be a lunch served from 11:30 am to 1 pm. Drop in for a few minutes or stay for the whole event! For more information email The All Nations Feast is organized by the Office of Indigenous Education and Engagement and Services for Aboriginal Students.

Seeking Student Ambassadors 🙋‍♀️

Want to share your knowledge of campus and all the wonderful opportunities and supports VIU has to offer prospective and new students? As a Student Ambassador you will have the opportunity to earn money while taking courses and engage and support the Office of Future Students and the Advising Centre. View the job posting and apply through CareerVIU. Feel free to send your questions to

Road Trips and Local Hikes 🚗

Join the Cultural Connections Road Trips team as we embark on exciting adventures to awe-inspiring locations. Every semester, we prepare a schedule of seasonal weekly road trips activities available to all registered VIU students. We also head outdoors and explore some of the most scenic and awe-inspiring local hiking trails Nanaimo and has to offer with the Local Hikes program. Be sure to check out the International Monthly Event Calendar for more details.

Campus Store gear sale 👕

Want some VIU swag for the fall? Until September 2, get 20 per cent off VIU-branded apparel (in-store only).

Take your studies abroad 🌍

The Education Abroad office wishes bon voyage to our first outbound exchange students in two years! If you’re interested in taking your studies abroad, apply by October 6 for the VIU Exchange program. Study in English at one of our 20-plus partner universities around the world. Funding opportunities are available, be sure to check out the Education Abroad website for more info.

Meditation, prayer and reflection spaces 🙏

Did you know that VIU’s Nanaimo campus has meditation, prayer and reflection spaces available to all VIU students and employees? Come to Building 200, Rooms 107a and 107b. If you have any questions about this, please email

VIU WUSC (World University Service of Canada)  

VIU’s WUSC Local Committee is a campus-based student group. While supporting student refugees in their integration to Canadian social and academic life, organizing fundraising events, and engaging their campus and community on migration issues, members are making a true difference in the world. To join, email

Supports & services

Visit the Career Studio 

Calling all VIU students! If you’re looking to secure a job or volunteer position in the coming months or year, stop by the new Career Studio in Building 255, Room 204. Our team can assist with resumes, cover letters, interview preparation and all other career-related needs. See our new website for more info.

New to VIU? You are not alone 📌

Meet VIU’s Academic Advisors. We are here to support you and answer any questions about university life. Visit VIU’s Ready, Set, Go self-serve orientation modules to help prepare you for what to expect at VIU in the next few months. We are available by phone, Zoom drop-in, email or in-person (Building 200 at VIU’s Nanaimo campus). Learn more.

Canada Revenue Agency webinars 💲

Want to learn more about Canada Revenue Agency benefits and credits you may be eligible for? Sign on to one of Canada Revenue Agency’s webinars.

Get to know the Nanaimo campus library 📚

As a university student, one of the important buildings on the Nanaimo campus you should get to know is the library. Library staff kindly shared 12 reasons to visit the library, from games and hanging out in the Wellness Lounge, to research help and coffee. Read about all the important services the library houses on the VIU Blog.

Get a free tutor 

Did you know there is free tutoring available to all students in all subjects through the Volunteer Tutor Program? Complete the Tutor Request form today to get started, or email for more information. Want to be a tutor? Email us to find out how!

Getting a VIU meal plan 🍎🍔

Food Services is offering a few different meal plan options for students. Visit the Dining Plans website for more info and then head to the main cafeteria (Building 300) to purchase your meal plan.

Free menstrual products on campus 

Did you know that menstrual products in all women’s and gender-neutral washrooms on VIU’s campuses and facilities are free? VIU, in partnership with the VIU Students’ Union, signed on to the United Way’s Period Promise campaign last spring, which raises awareness about the issue of period poverty and menstrual inequity.

SafeTALK Workshop 

As part of the World Suicide Prevention Day (September 10), Thrive is hosting a LivingWorks safeTALK workshop on September 9, a half-day face-to-face workshop featuring powerful presentations, audiovisuals and skills practice. You will learn how to prevent suicide by recognizing signs, engaging someone and connecting them to an intervention resource for further support. Register via Eventbrite. 

Get your student card 💳

Have you gotten your VIU student card yet? It gives you access to various campus spaces, allows you to borrow library books, print and access your meal plan. To get your card, upload your selfie to your student record, wait for the confirmation email that tells you your card is ready, then drop by the library service desk during open hours to pick up your card. September 6 to 9, and 12 to 16, pickup will be outside the Nanaimo library from 10 am to 4 pm daily.

Off-campus housing 🏠

Looking for off-campus rental housing or roommates? Need temporary accommodation? Questions or issues with contracts or fees? VIU Off-Campus Housing offers advice, education and advocacy. Visit Off-Campus Housing, email or make an appointment

Graduate students networking 

Come join our GROW network. We are welcoming all VIU graduate students to come out to these networking and training sessions. Sessions include: managing references, data collection, data management and effective writing strategies.

Student funding workshops 

All students welcome! A number of funding opportunities are available and supported through the Office of Graduate Studies and Student Research. Check out the schedule to put your best foot (application) forward!

Protect yourself before you connect yourself 

Phishing scams and other online cyberattacks are on the rise, what are you doing to protect yourself? Your family? Join Marvel stars Michael B. Jordan and Tessa Thompson and Train to be an internet bodyguard!

Back to school and cyber security 💻

September is right around the corner – Make sure you are thinking cyber safe for back to school! Looking for more? Check out your cyber security backpack.

VIU Student Health Clinic 👩‍⚕️

The VIU Student Health Clinic is a primary health care clinic in Building 200 run by nurse practitioners, who provide comprehensive clinical care, including the diagnosis and management of disease/illness, prescribing medications, ordering/interpreting laboratory/diagnostic tests and initiating referrals to specialists. Appointments are required and patients must be registered. To qualify, you must be a current VIU student without a local primary care provider. Call 250.740.6620 for more information.

Conference funding 💰              

Did you attend a conference over the summer? Intend to attend one this fall? Make sure you check out the conference funding available to all VIU students.

Questions about buying textbooks and course supplies? 📖

Purchase textbooks in store at the Nanaimo and Cowichan Campus Stores or online. You can come into the store or go online to find out what textbooks are needed for your courses. You can also check out our instructional videos below:

Mindfulness practice 🧠

Join VIU Counsellors for eight weeks of mindfulness practice and learning. This workshop will provide you with foundational training in the practice of mindfulness and
its application in reducing stress and improving well-being. This group is free! Email to determine if this group is right for you.


Did you know that as a VIU student you have access to exclusive discounts in your community and across the province? Download the Deals App, administered by the VIUSU and the BC Federation of Students, to learn more. Today’s featured businesses:

  • Koodo/TELUS: Get up to $10 off your monthly bill with Koodo.
  • Popeyes Supplements: Get 10% off regular-priced items.

COVID-19 updates

VIU health and safety protocols

Do you have questions about COVID-19 as we head into the 2022-23 school year? VIU’s Communicable Disease Prevention Plan and the Post-Secondary Public Health Guidance can help! These documents outline the prevention measures that are in place at VIU and in BC to reduce the risk of exposure to communicable diseases, including COVID-19. Learn more on VIU’s COVID-19 updates website.

Campus events

Stay on top of what's happening at VIU. Find ways to get involved: 

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