VIU students in the quad at the Nanaimo campus

VIU Student Pulse News: August 25, 2021

August 25, 2021

New health and safety protocols, campus jobs, welcome week and more 🎒

As you may have heard, the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Training has announced some additional health and safety protocols for on-campus activities. The additional guidelines are that masks are required in indoor public areas on campus, including lobbies, hallways, stairwells, elevators, classrooms and labs, and accessing some non-essential services on campus will now require proof of vaccination. We know that many of you have questions and we will provide more details as we learn more. We encourage you to bookmark this FAQs page, which we will be updating regularly. Here's what we know so far.

Need to know

Returning to campus reflections 

It is a big step to transition back to campus and it comes on the heels of other big steps. So the question is – how do we take this next step? As we all prepare to return to campus after a year and a half that has brought many changes, challenges and perhaps some comforts, VIU Counsellor Caitlin Eliasson has written a note of encouragement and support for the community on the #VIUBlog.

Vaccines on campus 💉

Need to get your first or second COVID vaccine? Island Health's VaxVan will be on the Nanaimo campus on Tuesday, September 7, from 10 am to 4 pm, in the Royal Bank Plaza (next to Building 200). No appointment necessary, just drop by! Stay tuned to the Pulse for further announcements about vaccine pop-up clinics at VIU campuses.

Looking for a job on campus this fall? 🍂

The fall and spring work-op job postings are now available for viewing on CareerVIU. Go to the Students & Alumni section and log in using your Registration student number and PIN then select On-Campus Employment for work-op postings. All students who are registered in 9 credits or more and have a valid Social Insurance Number are eligible for work-op positions. Follow the instructions in the posting for how to apply. All work-op positions are part of the Co-Curricular Record Opportunity Directory! Check out the Campus Student Employment or Co-Curricular Record webpages to find out what this means for you.

Nanaimo campus buildings now open 🙋‍♀️

As we prepare for the return to campus on September 7, most buildings on the Nanaimo campus are now open during regular business hours – 9 am to 5 pm. The library remains accessible 24-7 via your student card. One exception is the Lower Cafeteria (Building 185), which remains closed. See the Food Services update below for more info on food options on campus. Welcome back everyone!

RockVIU now in full swing ⭐️

If you haven’t signed up for RockVIU yet, there’s still availability in some sessions, including the Connect Fair Festival, interactive art exhibit and outdoor/drive-in movie night. Pre-registration is required. Once you’re signed up, the whole schedule can be downloaded on the co-curricular involvement app

Register for RockVIU


VIU Students' Union Welcome Week Fair 

Welcome back to campus! Stop by the VIUSU building (193) to check out our Welcome Week Fair on September 7, 8 and 9. We can't wait to meet you in person, there are lots of giveaways, vendors, clubs and prizes. Make sure to visit the VIUSU tent to get your free student planner, it is extra special this year and we can't wait to show why!

Graduate Programs Expo

Are you ready to take the next step in your post-secondary career? Don’t miss VIU’s first-ever online Graduate Program Expo on September 15. This event is for anyone thinking about furthering their studies at the graduate level, and will allow prospective students to connect with faculty in all of the graduate programs VIU offers. Register for the event.

VIU Wayfinding Survey 📱

Have you struggled with finding your way on campus? Share your thoughts and win a prize! VIU is developing a new comprehensive and accessible wayfinding signage system. Fill out a short survey to let us know how we can improve your campus experience for the chance to win a $50 Campus Store gift card!

New Geography course explores global human-environment relationships

There are still seats available in this new course offered for the spring semester, taught by Dr. Sean Sloan, VIU’s new Canada Research Chair in the Human Dimensions of Sustainability and Resilience. Geography 233: Human-Environment Relationships for Sustainability and Prosperity looks at relationships between people and place in global forest, savanna and agricultural landscapes, and looks at how humans adapt to changes in these landscapes across time and space. The course is open to any VIU student with a third year standing or higher.

All Nations Feast: September 16, 2021

The Office of Indigenous Education and Engagement would like to invite you to come, witness and be a part of this traditional welcome for our Indigenous students, taking place at Shq’apthut, Building 170 at the Nanaimo campus. This feast provides an opportunity for representatives from our four Nations on Vancouver Island (Kwakwaka'wakw, Nuu chah nulth, Coast Salish and Métis) to provide a traditional welcome. More info.  

Supports and services

Get your VIU ID card 

Your VIU ID card provides you with 24-7 access to the Nanaimo campus library, services such as loans and printing, various campus spaces and other perks. Follow these step-by-step directions.

Transitioning to VIU video 

VIU offers a variety of services to aid students in achieving their education. This video highlights many of those services to make your life at University so much easier!

Info night for parents 💻

Calling all new students! We have a special webinar for your parents to learn how to support you as you begin your academic journey (and when not to! 😀). This event is part of RockVIU new student orientation. Share this registration link with your parents

Get your books and supplies from the Campus Store 📖

The Campus Store carries everything you need to make the most out of your VIU experience. This includes all your back-to-school gear, textbooks, digital access codes for online materials, special attire, tools, art supplies and much more. Nanaimo store hours are Monday to Friday, 8:30 am to 4:30 pm. Students can currently pick up online orders from the Cowichan store Tuesday to Thursday, 9 am to 3:30 pm, and after August 30, the store will be open Monday to Friday from 9 am to 3:30 pm.

Getting started at the library 

Get familiar with all the services and supports the VIU library has to offer with this Getting Started guide. Did you know that the Nanaimo campus library is accessible to students 24-7, 365 days a year with your student ID card? Contact us for assistance.

Update on food on campus 🍕🍔

VIU Food Services has got you covered for a great semester on campus! In the Upper Cafeteria, new outlets will allow Food Services to provide lots of options while ensuring a safe experience based on lessons learned during the pandemic. The salad bar has been replaced with a new build your own salad, sandwich and power bowl station serviced by our staff. There will also be an allergen station and grill station providing everything from your classic hamburger to a barbecue grilled rack of ribs. You can now purchase Dining Plans online. Hours:

  • Cafeteria hours are Monday to Friday, 7 am to 7 pm and Saturdays 10 am to 2 pm.
  • Grab and go food items remain available in the Campus Store Monday to Friday from 8 am to 4:30 pm.
  • Starbucks will be open starting September 7 from 7:30 am to 1:30 pm.

VIUSU bookswap 📖

The VIU consignment bookswap is looking to sell your textbooks on your behalf. Each year this service puts thousands of dollars back into students’ pockets! Bring your texts to the Students' Union office (Building 193 on the Nanaimo campus) during office hours, set your prices and your books will be listed for up to one year. HINT: check to see if there are other copies of the text and how much they are listed at for help with setting your prices. Note: consignment fee is 20%, so when your book sells your payment will be for 80% of your set book price.

Health and dental plan opt out info 

If you already have existing *equivalent* extended health and dental benefits, you can opt out of the VIUSU Health and Dental plan before the fee deadline (check your student record if you are unsure of dates). You can also coordinate your benefits for additional coverage. Once you opt-out, you cannot opt back in unless you lose your equivalent coverage. Learn more.

Thrive: VIU’s wellness program 

Want to make this year your best yet? Connect with Thrive, VIU’s home for all things wellness! Follow us on Facebook or Instagram to stay up to date on all our great fall programming!

Fall 2021 parking FAQ 🚗

Some changes have been made to VIU’s parking structure, including a rate adjustment back to pre-pandemic pricing and some term options. Please read the Fall 2021 Parking FAQ to learn more.

Talk to Me 📣

Are you looking to get connected on campus? The Talk to Me program is a campaign to create a more connected VIU culture. Check our website out for more information, and follow us on Facebook for details on all our upcoming events!

Registration hours

The Registration Centre has reopened for in-person services every afternoon. Students can also email or phone 250-740-6400. Further information is available in the Fall Registration Bulletin and on the Registration website.Those looking to talk about payment options with a cashier can do so by emailing or phoning 250-740-6236.

The VIU Cowichan Learning Centre 

Are you a VIU Cowichan student looking for some extra academic support? You can find it through The Learning Centre. Work individually, attend tutorials, meet with a tutor, attend study skills workshops and receive writing assistance. Learning Centre tutorials are also available Mondays to Thursdays, from 12:15 pm to 1:15 pm.

Cowichan Writing Centre for university students ✏️

Writing isn’t easy, and a bit of guidance never hurts. The Cowichan Writing Centre is staffed by faculty who offer free, one-on-one assistance for students in university programs. Get help writing research papers, formal essays, book reviews, resumes and business letters. All appointments for the fall 2021 semester will be conducted online. Book an appointment online.

Volunteer Tutor program

Volunteer Tutors are screened, trained and ready to offer support to students who request extra help with their studies. This free one-on-one help is available for most courses. Tutor request forms can be found here. Paper copies about the program are also available at the front desk of Student Affairs.

Thriving in Action 🧠

As the Fall semester approaches, are you looking for motivation, energy, well-being and academic success? If so, we’ve got the program for you! Join our innovative new program where you can learn better, feel better and do better. Check out all the details and register for our Fall zoom session here!

IT Student Support Counter moving

The new location will be at the newly renovated Library Service Counter – close to the central hub of the library. Student Technical Support Assistants will be available for assistance there this fall.  

COVID updates

Were you vaccinated outside of BC? 💉

Island Health wants anyone who received COVID-19 vaccines in another province or country to submit their vaccination record. This is particularly important for international students, as additional vaccination may be recommended. Do this as soon as possible.
1. Register online: or by phone at 1-833- 838-2323.
2. Submit your official vaccination record at
3. Be notified about COVID-19 vaccination needs.

Info on COVID-19 vaccinations for post-secondary students

As a new academic year draws near, Island Health wants to ensure that every student is protected against COVID-19. Wondering if you need one or more doses of vaccine? How to make an appointment, or if you can just walk in somewhere and get it done? Check out this information bulletin from Island Health on the #VIUBlog.

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