VIU's three totems outside Shq'apthut on the Nanaimo campus

VIU Light Up, exam support and holiday fun 🌲⛄

December 7, 2022

VIU Student Pulse News: December 7, 2022

You’re almost there! Exams start next week, then it’s time for a much-deserved break. To help you get through these last two weeks, check out the holiday-themed events happening on the Nanaimo campus this week and next. Hint: there’s lots of opportunities to get free hot chocolate!

Need to know

VIUSU Holiday Kickoff 🎄

Join your VIU Students’ Union and the VIU University Christian Ministries in the Upper Cafeteria on Wednesday, December 7 for a Holiday Kick-off from 5 to 8 pm.
🔥 Fire pits & s’mores
☕️ Hot chocolate
🍿 Xmas popcorn
🧑‍🎨 Artisan vendors
🎨 Christmas card making
🏠 Gingerbread mansion competition
💌 Write a post card and we’ll mail it!

VIU Light Up ⛄️🌭

The Fun@VIU crew is throwing a party to celebrate the Christmas season on Thursday, December 8 starting at 4:30 pm in the quad. There will be a bonfire, hot dogs, s’mores, hot chocolate and Christmas tunes. Artists will have an opportunity to showcase their work. Email if you’re interested in a booth.

VIU winter break closure ❄️

A reminder that all Vancouver Island University campuses and locations will be closed from December 23, 2022, to January 2, 2023, for winter break. Support services will be available until December 22, 2022, and then back online again on January 3, 2023.


Register for Spring 2023 recreation programs ⚽️🏄‍♀️🚣‍♀️
Get fit, get healthy and have fun! Registration is open for our popular VIU Athleticsand& Recreation spring semester recreation programs. Go kayaking, surfing or hiking in a guided outdoor recreation adventure, make friends in an intramural sports league, get your heart pumping at a weekly fitness class and take part in VIU’s version of the Amazing Race. Programs are geared toward various skill and experience levels. Browse the many available Recreation Programs or chat with the VIU Gym’s front desk staff (Building 190) for more information.
VIU Mariners – Ready to spring back into action 🏀🏐

There were plenty of victories in the VIU Gym to celebrate in the fall as the VIU Mariners varsity men’s and women’s basketball and volleyball teams finished the semester ranked in the top 15 in Canada. Men’s basketball and women’s volleyball are both undefeated and ranked #1 in the country. Check out the Mariners as they battle PACWEST conference opponents in January, starting with a basketball matchup against their Island rivals from Camosun College on January 13 in the VIU Gym. All VIU Mariners regular home games are free for VIU students to attend! Visit VIU Mariners for game schedules and team info.

Submit your research photos 📷

Science Exposed 2023 is now open! Eye-catching images coming from research projects from all fields, with the exception of the arts, can now be submitted. The individuals or groups that have the most successfully combined creativity and science will be awarded one of the many cash prizes. The contest is organized by the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council (NSERC) and Acfas. 

Want to keep your room while you go away? 

If you’re leaving town for a while, you might want to hang on to your rental accommodation or even make some of your rent money back. While you’re not using your room, it might be possible to get another student to rent it temporarily or even cover the cost. VIU’s Off-Campus Housing Coordinator Michael Witcomb shares some questions to ask on the VIU Blog.

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? Find them in Building 200, Rooms 107a and 107b. If you have any questions about this, please reach out to the Student Affairs team at

Take a break with Career Studio ☕️

Need a break from exams? Beat the stress with the Career Studio! Join us for free coffee and hot chocolate in Building 255, Room 204 from 1 to 3 pm, December 12 to 15. Open to all students! Career journeys, like snowflakes, are all unique. Design a snowflake and reflect and share about your goals, skills and abilities. The team will have the Who You Are Matters board game on-hand for any students who want to take part in this self-reflective exercise. There will also be career development materials available.

WUSC Student Refugee Program International Talent Showcase 🌎

Join members of VIU’s WUSC community on Friday, December 9 at The Vault Café downtown Nanaimo for an evening of talent that spans the globe. The program will feature short performances by international students and community members with DJ sets by VIU Simon, a.k.a. Rebel Selector. The event is both a social and a fundraiser/awareness-raiser for the Student Refugee Program. Doors open at 7 pm, event runs 8 to 9:30 pm. Entrance by donation.Learn more about WUSC.

Navigator Student Press 💻

The Navigator’s next issue comes out on December 14 – just in time for winter break! If you want to find out more about VIU and the community from a student perspective, visit The Navigator Student Press, VIU’s fully student-run online news magazine. Read, watch and listen to the stories that matter to you as students. 

Need gift ideas? 🎁

Visit the Campus Store, Monday to Friday from 9 am to 4 pm. There are lots of gift ideas for the holiday season.

Coats for Christmas 2022 🧥

Youth 20/20 Can in Nanaimo is hosting a Coats for Christmas event. We are collecting new and gently used coats, hats, gloves and socks for women, men, teenagers and children. Items collected will be distributed to community members who are homeless and to children in need in the community. We will be at the Lions Pavilion at Maffeo Sutton Park from 3 to 7 pm on Friday, December 16, and from 11 am to 3 pm on Saturday, December 17.

Help us all stay healthy 😷

VIU is reminding our community members to take steps to reduce your risk of illness this fall and winter. Visit COVID updates to learn more about personal measures you can take to reduce risk of illness and learn more about VIU’s Communicable Diseases Plan.

Supports and services

VIUSU Exam Pit Stop ✏️

Your students’ union will be offering snacks, pens/pencils and more for all students writing final exams in the gym during exam week! Find the VIUSU tent outside the gym at the following times:

  • December 12: 12:30 to 1 pm
  • December 13: 8:30 to 9 am
  • December 14: 8:30 to 9 am
  • December 15: 12:30 to 1 pm
  • December 16: 8:30 to 9 am & 12:30 to 1 pm

Happy (cyber safe) holidays from VIU’s IT team 📱

It’s the most wonderful time of the year … for cyber attackers. Make sure you and your devices have a cyber-safe holiday:

A welcome to new students from VIU Educational Advisors

Attention new students starting in January 2023: VIU’s Educational Advisors want you to know they are here to help with course planning, web registration and any other questions you have about university life. Connect with them in-person, or by phone, email or Zoom.

Library guide for new students 📚

New to VIU or need a refresher on VIU Library services in anticipation of the spring semester? Check out our guide for new students. Need research help as this semester winds down? Get help here. You can connect with us in-person, by phone, chat or on Zoom. And don’t forget that the Library at Nanaimo campus is open 24-7, 365 days a year. Just scan in with your VIU card on evenings and weekends. 

Simple tips for winter walking ❄️

Now that snow and ice have arrived, VIU’s Health and Safety department has some tips to help prevent injury:

  • Wear appropriate footwear, like treaded snow boots.
  • Keep hands out of pockets to aid balance.
  • Use handrails when available.
  • Avoid carrying items – drop them if you begin to fall.
  • Plan your route and take your time.
  • Stay active with leg strength and balance exercises.

Student Affairs service closure ❗️

Student Affairs services will be closed on Friday, December 9 from 2 to 4 pm. Some areas may still have limited services for pre-scheduled appointments on that day, but most drop-in services will be unavailable during this timeframe. Regular service hours will resume on Monday, December 12. Visit the Student Affairs homepage for all services impacted.

Holiday menstrual kits

The VIU Students’ Union recognizes that accessing menstrual products while away from campus is challenging for some. The holiday menstrual kits are stocked with enough products to get you through an average cycle. Sign up is required by Friday, December 9. You will receive an email when your kits are ready for pick up! 

VIUSU holiday office closure

The VIU Students’ Union office will be closed on December 16 and will reopen on January 3, 2023. If you need to purchase a spring semester bus pass, January monthly pass or individual tickets, please come by the office before 4 pm on December 16

Here2Talk 🧠

BC post-secondary students have access to free, confidential mental health support through Here2Talk via app, phone and web, 24-7. If you are in a crisis or need immediate help, contact the Vancouver Island Crisis line at 1-888-494-3888. 

REACH Award spring call 💰

Great news! There will be a spring call for VIU's REACH Awards! REACH awards $3,000 for excellent student research and we encourage you to check it out! Four undergraduate and five graduate awards available. Deadline: January 20, 2023. Email if you have questions.

Funding to attend conferences 💰

The next conference funding deadline is January 20, 2023. If you presented, or are planning to present, at a conference between September 1, 2022, and April 30, 2023, check out the conference funding website. Email if you have questions.

Get a Free Tutor 🙋‍♀️

Request a tutor today for your January courses through the Volunteer Tutor Program. Complete the Tutor Request form to get started, or email for more information. The sooner you request a tutor, the better. Tutoring is now part of the Co-Curricular Record! Want to be a tutor? Email us to find out how!

Mark your calendars

Student Art Sale 🎨

Come to the View Gallery (Building 330) on December 14 from 11 am to 5 pm for VIU Visual Art students’ annual art sale. Buy unique gifts and support local art students!
VIUSU’s stressbuster series is back 
Stressbuster events are organized with the purpose of helping students find ways to have fun, be creative and unwind before final exam time! Coming up:

  • December 7: Reflexology session. Is your hand cramping up from all the assignments you’ve been writing? Visit Brenna in the Library lounge near the front entrance for some reflexology. Sign-ups available on-site from 12 to 2 pm.


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.

There are lots of great discounts to finish off your holiday shopping list! Check them out on the app. 

Campus events

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

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