COVID-19 Updates

Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry has lifted the face covering order in British Columbia effective March 11, 2022, due to high levels of vaccination and decreasing transmission rates across BC.

Masks are now optional in all indoor, public spaces at NIC. This includes all learning spaces, employee worksites, services and common areas.

North Island College supports anyone who chooses to continue to wear a mask as a personal choice.

NIC has followed provincial health guidance throughout the pandemic, an approach we expect will continue to serve us well.  However, we understand that this change in Provincial Health Orders may cause concern for some students and employees. Please respect the choices of others as we move through this time of transition. 

Hand sanitizer and masks will continue to be provided as supplies last and existing barriers will stay in place in the coming months. NIC will follow its Communicable Disease Plan, which relies on common prevention measures.

Rapid tests continue to be available for student and employee pick up at Student Services offices at each campus, as supplies last. More information on test kits, including when and how to use them, can be found in the COVID-19 Rapid Testing Guidance for Post-secondary Institutions.

Anyone who is concerned they, or someone they have been exposed to, is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, should complete the day self-assessment using bc.thrive.health and follow the guidance provided by the BC Centre for Disease Control website, which will be updated as the direction evolves.

As a reminder, the Employee and Family Assistance Program is available to employees. Students can access supports or reach out to studentlife@nic.bc.ca.

Additional resources


Previous updates

March 10, 2022 - Provincial Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry has lifted the face covering order in British Columbia effective March 11, 2022, due to high levels of vaccination and decreasing transmission rates across BC.

Masks are now optional in all indoor, public spaces at NIC. This includes all learning spaces, employee worksites, services and common areas.

North Island College supports anyone who chooses to continue to wear a mask as a personal choice.

NIC has followed provincial health guidance throughout the pandemic, an approach we expect will continue to serve us well.  However, we understand that this change in Provincial Health Orders may cause concern for some students and employees.  Please respect the choices of others as we move through this time of transition. 

Hand sanitizer and masks will continue to be provided and existing barriers will stay in place in the coming months. NIC will follow its Communicable Disease Plan, which relies on common prevention measures.

Rapid tests continue to be available for student and employee pick up at Student Services offices at each campus, as supplies last. More information on test kits, including when and how to use them, can be found in the COVID-19 Rapid Testing Guidance for Post-secondary Institutions.

Anyone who is concerned they, or someone they have been exposed to, is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, should complete the day self-assessment using bc.thrive.health and follow the guidance provided by the BC Centre for Disease Control website, which will be updated as the direction evolves.

As a reminder, the Employee and Family Assistance Program is available to employees. Students can access supports or reach out to studentlife@nic.bc.ca.

Jan. 26, 2022 - The BC Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC) has updated its public health guidance for post-secondary institutions to support in-person learning for the winter semester.

We continue to follow guidance from the Provincial Health Officer, the provincial government, WorkSafeBC and Island Health to support your health and safety.

Post-Secondary Rapid Test Kit Strategy

A total of 500,000 rapid tests will be distributed directly to BC post-secondary institutions from the Provincial Health Services Authority, based on priorities outlined in the COVID-19 Rapid Testing Guidance for Post-secondary Institutions available on the BCCDC website.

It is important to note that:

  • Rapid tests will be available as an optional, time-limited initiative for post-secondary institutions for the testing of symptomatic employees and students.
  • The tests are a self-management tool intended to support the continuity of on-campus learning, instruction and research.
  • Asymptomatic screening of employees and students is not recommended by public health and tests distributed to post-secondary institutions from the provincial supply are not to be used for asymptomatic screening programs.
  • The Ministry of Advanced Education & Skills Training will be reaching out directly to eligible institutions to confirm test kit allocations and distribution logistics based on the priorities identified in the BCCDC guidance.

Test kits have not yet been received. We will update this page with more details as the distribution process is confirmed.

Meanwhile, NIC encourages you to continue to use the Thrive BC self-check daily to monitor your health before attending campus and follow BCCDC recommendations for isolation if you are ill. Please continue to follow NIC COVID-19 Safety Guidelines

Key Points

  • On Jan. 21, 2022 NIC received a letter from Dr. Bonnie Henry, BC’s Provincial Health Officer, confirming NIC’s approach to safe, on-campus instruction.
  • NIC campuses are open and NIC libraries, Student Services, bookstores and food services are available. Advising and counselling services are available digitally and in person.
  • Anyone who is concerned they, or someone they have been exposed to, may be experiencing COVID-19 symptoms should complete the daily self-assessment using bc.thrive.health for symptoms and follow the protocols laid out on the BC Centre for Disease Control website, which are updated as direction evolves.
  • If you are a student registered for in-person classes who needs to temporarily study from home, please reach out to your instructor.
  • Employees and students in clinical practice may also face additional protocols or requirements. Please talk to your supervisor or instructor for additional guidance.
  • NIC provides quality three-layer masks at building entrances. A limited number of medical masks are available via the Service Catalog for employees or via the Registration Office at each campus for students. We can not confirm an ongoing supply at this time.
  • Please visit the Centre for Teaching and Learning Innovation (CTLI)'s Learn Anywhere and Teach Anywhere sites for resources for students and instructors.

Jan. 24, 2022 –  NIC has received a new letter from Dr. Bonnie Henry, BC’s Provincial Health Officer.

The letter confirms NIC’s approach to safe, on-campus instruction, restating the relatively low risk of COVID-19 transmission in structured settings with high levels of mask use on campuses.

NIC’s mix of digital, on-campus and blended learning across all four campuses provides students with the flexibility and support to continue their programs. If you are a student needing additional support, please reach out to your instructor or book an appointment with an Advisor or Navigator.

We continue to follow guidance from the Provincial Health Officer, the provincial government, WorkSafeBC and Island Health to support your health and safety. More information can be found at the BC Centre for Disease Control BCCDC guidance for Post Secondary.

Meanwhile, NIC encourages you to continue to use the Thrive BC self-check daily to monitor your health before attending campus and follow BCCDC recommendations for isolation if you are ill. Please continue to follow  NIC COVID-19 Safety Guidelines.  Updates will continue to be made on this page, as required.

Key Points

  • Most NIC programs started on Jan. 10, 2022 with trades, and health care programs starting or continuing on Jan. 4, 2022. Students should check their class or program schedule for details through self-service on myNIC.
  • NIC campuses are open and NIC libraries, Student Services, bookstores and food services are available. Advising and counselling services are available digitally and in person.
  • On Jan. 17, 2022, B.C.’s Provincial Health Officer (PHO) updated the Gatherings and Events and Food and Liquor Serving Premises Orders. These orders do not apply to educational activities at NIC.
  • On Jan.10, 2022, the BC Centre for Disease Control updated its mask information for the public. All types of masks help reduce the transmission of COVID-19 when they fit comfortably over the mouth and nose with no gaps around the face. In healthcare settings, respirators (e.g., N95, KN95, or CAN95) are specially fitted to each person, but in public settings (such as NIC), this is not needed. NIC provides quality three-layer masks at building entrances. A limited number of medical masks are available via the Service Catalog for employees or via the Registration Office at each campus for students. We can not confirm an ongoing supply at this time.
  • If you are a student registered for in-person classes who needs to temporarily study from home, please reach out to your instructor.
  • Please visit the Centre for Teaching and Learning Innovation (CTLI)'s Learn Anywhere and Teach Anywhere sites for resources for students and instructors.

Jan.12, 2022 -- NIC continues to monitor the latest information, following Provincial Health Officer, the provincial government, WorkSafeBC and Island Health to guidance to support your health and safety. The College is open, with programs and services starting as scheduled this month.

We understand that the emergence of Omicron has led to increased safety concerns and requests for medical masks on NIC campuses.

NIC has been able to secure a limited supply of medical-grade masks (not N95 masks) that should arrive shortly. We are pleased to provide these to employees who work directly with students or the public, as well as to risk-averse students as requested. If you are an employee who would like to request medical masks for your work, please submit a Service Catalog request. The Facilities team, in conjunction with Print, Purchasing and Retail Services will arrange next steps. Quantities are limited and all masks in our first shipment have been allocated. Please continue to send in your Service Catalog requests and Facilities will update employees individually when the next shipment arrives. Unfortunately, we cannot confirm an ongoing supply at this time.

Students may request medical masks at Registration Offices at each campus, as they are available.

It’s important to note that triple-layer masks continue to be available at NIC entrances for all students, employees and visitors. These masks meet Provincial Health Officer and WorkSafeBC requirements for face coverings in the workplace. For more information on mask types and fit, visit the recently updated BCCDC webpage.

The ongoing pandemic is rapidly changing, requiring constant flexibility. If you are a student registered for in-person classes who needs to temporarily study from home, please reach out to your instructor. Alternatives to in-person delivery may be available for some courses. Please check with an Advisor for more information.

Based on experience in BC and internationally, the Provincial Health Officer states that educational settings are low-risk for COVID-19 transmission. You can help by continuing to use the Thrive BC self-check every day to monitor your health before attending campus and following the NIC COVID-19 Safety Guidelines.

Updates will continue to be made on this page, as required.

What's new?

  • Most NIC programs started on Jan. 10, 2022 with trades, and health care programs starting or continuing on Jan. 4, 2022. Students should check their class or program schedule for details through self-service on myNIC.
  • NIC campuses are open and NIC libraries, Student Services, bookstores and food services are available. Advising and counselling services are available digitally and in person.
  • In-person orientation events for all students have been moved online.
  • Provincial mask orders remain in place, with the Provincial Health Officer recommending masks with more than one layer of protection. Quality three-layer masks are distributed at building entrances.
  • If you are a student registered for in-person classes who needs to temporarily study from home, please reach out to your instructor.
  • Alternatives to in-person delivery may be available for some courses. Please check with an Advisor for more information.
  • Please visit the Centre for Teaching and Learning Innovation (CTLI)'s Learn Anywhere and Teach Anywhere sites for resources for students and instructors.

Jan.10, 2022 -- NIC continues to monitor the latest information, following Provincial Health Officer, the provincial government, WorkSafeBC and Island Health to guidance to support your health and safety. The College is open, with programs and services starting as scheduled this month.

We understand that the emergence of Omicron has led to increased safety concerns and requests for medical masks on NIC campuses.

NIC has been able to secure a limited supply of medical masks that should be arriving shortly. We are pleased to provide these to employees who work directly with students or the public, as well as to risk-averse students as requested. If you are an employee who would like to request a medical mask for your work, please submit a Service Catalog request. The Facilities team will arrange to send you a box of medical masks. Students may request medical masks at registration offices at each campus. Note – as quantities are limited, we cannot confirm an ongoing supply at this time.  It’s important to note that the triple-layer masks currently available at building entrances meet both the Provincial Health Officer and WorkSafeBC requirements for face coverings in the workplace.

Dr. Henry also reminds us that to be effective, any mask you use should fit you well, covering from the bridge of your nose to your chin, with no gaps. For additional guidance on mask use, visit WorkSafeBC.

The ongoing pandemic is rapidly changing, requiring constant flexibility. If you are a student registered for in-person classes who needs to temporarily study from home, please reach out to your instructor. Alternatives to in-person delivery may be available for some courses. Please check with an Advisor for more information.

Based on experience in BC and internationally, the Provincial Health Officer states that educational settings are low-risk for COVID-19 transmission.  You can help by continuing to use the Thrive BC self-check every day to monitor your health before attending campus and following the NIC COVID-19 Safety Guidelines.  

Updates will continue to be made on this page, as required.

What's new?

  • Most NIC programs started on Jan. 10, 2022 with trades, and health care programs starting or continuing on Jan. 4, 2022. Students should check their class or program schedule for details through self-service on myNIC.
  • NIC campuses are open and NIC libraries, Student Services, bookstores and food services are available. Advising and counselling services are available digitally and in person.
  • In-person orientation events for all students have been moved online.
  • Provincial mask orders remain in place, with the Provincial Health Officer recommending masks with more than one layer of protection.  Quality three-layer masks are distributed at building entrances.
  • If you are a student registered for in-person classes who needs to temporarily study from home, please reach out to your instructor.
  • Alternatives to in-person delivery may be available for some courses. Please check with an Advisor for more information.
  • Please visit the Centre for Teaching and Learning Innovation (CTLI)'s Learn Anywhere and Teach Anywhere sites for resources for students and instructors.

As the COVID-19 cases continue to increase across BC, NIC is committed to following public health orders and guidance to support your health and safety. As the pandemic continues this winter, we have reviewed operations for the beginning of the Winter 2022 term.

Most NIC programs will start on Jan. 10, 2022 with trades, Health Care Assistant and Practical Nursing programs starting or continuing one week earlier on Jan. 4, 2022. Students should check their class or program schedule for details through self-service on myNIC.

Campuses are open and NIC libraries, Student Services, bookstores and food services are available. Advising and counselling services are available digitally and in person.

The ongoing pandemic is rapidly changing, requiring constant flexibility. If you are a student registered for in-person classes who needs to temporarily study from home, please reach out to your instructor. You may also book an appointment with an Advisor or email questions@nic.bc.ca for any support you might need.

Based on experience in BC and internationally, the Provincial Health Officer states that educational settings are low-risk for COVID-19 transmission. You can help by continuing to use the Thrive BC self-check every day to monitor your health before attending campus and following the NIC COVID-19 Safety Guidelines.

The College continues to monitor the situation and work in consultation with the Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Training, students and employee groups to hear any concerns. Updates will continue to be made on this page, as required. 

I appreciate your patience as we work to support you in these changing times.

Sincerely,

Lisa Domae
President and CEO

What's new?

  • In-person orientation events for all students have been moved online.
  • If you are a student registered for in-person classes who needs to temporarily study from home, please reach out to your instructor.
  • Alternatives to in-person delivery may be available for some courses. Please check with an Advisor for more information.
  • Provincial mask orders remain in place, with the Provincial Health Officer recommending masks with more than one layer of protection. Quality three-layer masks are distributed at building entrances. NIC’s Purchasing Department will work with Deans and Directors to determine the quantity of medical-grade masks required for frontline faculty and staff who would prefer to use them. These masks may not be available if required in health care settings.
  • The Centre for Teaching and Learning Innovation (CTLI) is available to support students and instructors. Please visit the Learn Anywhere and Teach Anywhere sites for resources. 
  • The College’s scheduling team is looking to maximize learning spaces by moving classes to larger rooms and technology-enabled classrooms wherever possible.

NIC COVID Updates 2021

NIC COVID Updates 2020