Information for International Students

Frequently Asked Questions

Please see the latest travel information for international students

Yes – students and employees must wear a mask when they are in shared, indoor spaces on our campuses this fall. This requirement in in line with the latest BC public health rules and includes classrooms, libraries, cafeterias, and other shared spaces like hallways.

Yes. All students and employees at NIC are required to wear a mask while indoors on campus, regardless of their vaccination status.

Simply walk-in to any COVID-19 vaccine clinic within Island Health to receive your first dose quickly and easily. You do not need an appointment or personal health number to get your first dose of vaccine. Second dose walk-in spots may be available, based on vaccine supply.

A complete list of vaccine clinics is available online at: covid19.islandclinics.ca

To ensure your spot or book an appointment, visit www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/covid-19/vaccine/register or by calling 1-833-2323.

Getting vaccinated is a personal choice. Proof of vaccination will not be required to be on NIC campuses.

However, Island Health is working to ensure every student is protected against COVID-19, by making vaccination more convenient than ever. Please see the attached information sheet.

COVID-19 protection requires two doses of vaccine currently available in Canada. Anyone who needs vaccination can book an appointment in advance or simply walk-in to any COVID-19 vaccine clinic within Island Health to receive a dose quickly and easily.

If you received a single dose of the Janssen (Johnson & Johnson) vaccine, you do not need any further doses, but you should submit your COVID-19 vaccine record in B.C.’s immunization record system.

If you are planning to travel to Canada, please visit international student travel page for more information on approved vaccines and quarantine.

If you are already in Canada and you have received COVID-19 vaccines in another province or country, you are recommended to submit your vaccination record to BC’s health system to determine if you require additional vaccination.

There are three easy steps to submitting a vaccination record and determining vaccination needs. As the review process can take time, Island Health recommends completing this process as soon as possible.

  1. Register online at getvaccinated.gov.bc.ca or by phone at 1-833-838-2323.
  2. Submit official vaccination record at immunizationrecord.gov.bc.ca
  3. Be notified about COVID-19 vaccination needs.

Help is available in many languages. Service is available daily from 7 am to 7 pm, or 9 am to 5 pm on holidays. To speak with someone please call 1-833-838-2323. Telephone service for the hearing impaired is available at 711. The B.C. government’s vaccination website is also available in languages other than English.

We understand that many courses around the world are interrupted due to the COVID-19. At this time please submit the documents that you have been issued up to this point. This may include transcripts from all Grade 11 and part of Grade 12 courses and interim/partial/predictive results. When forwarding this information to NIC International Admissions, please indicate the documents you are unable to obtain at this time and if you know, when you can expect to receive them.

This depends on what documents you can provide to us. After submitting your online application to NIC through Education Planner BC, please contact us at iadmissions@nic.bc.ca attaching all documents you have from your recent education and let us know what you cannot produce at this time. Once we receive this information we will advise you on the next step.

If you are choosing to take online IELTS Indicator or online TOEFL, the required scores are the same as in-person assessments, as detailed here.

NIC also accepts Duolingo English Test in lieu of IELTS or TOEFL  and you must achieve the minimum of 105 in the Duolingo English Test to meet the English admission requirement of IELTS 6.0 (overall score). If you have submitted the Duolingo English Test score below 105, we require you to wait for 3 weeks prior to re-testing.

In October 2020, Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) announced that North Island College is an approved Designated Learning Institute (DLI) and can bring students to Canada to begin studies. Only students with full study permit approval can enter Canada to study at North Island College. Any student with full study permit approval must follow the instructions in the NIC travel advisory in order to plan their trip to Canada with the assistance of the Office of Global Engagement.  

Options are available for students who have received stage one Approval in Principle (AIP) status and who would like to begin their studies from their home country. Please connect with us by emailing istudentvisas@nic.bc.ca to determine whether you can begin your studies remotely.

If your study permit remains in process at the time of your start date, you have the option to defer your intake to the next available intake for your program. NIC will communicate with you on the next steps be in contact with you during the summerbefore the term start and we will communicate with you on the next steps. Please check your NIC email inbox regularly.

Please first go to Government of Canada’s website and read the information. If you have general questions about study permit application after reading the website, you may write to us at study@nic.bc.ca. Please note that NIC does not provide immigration services or advice to applicants and does not apply for study permits or inquire about your existing study permit application on your behalf. For this, please connect with an education/immigration agent in your area. You can also look for an educational/immigration consultants that partner with NIC HERE.

We have a new virtual orientation specifically for new international students. Please see Online Orientation page for more information.

Please review the NIC Travel Advisory for full details on traveling to Canada, quarantine regulations and information regarding accommodations. You will need to follow all travel advisories for entering Canada including and quarantine measures.

Please refer to the Government of Canada webpage to find out if you can enter Canada.

Yes, Canada Homestay Network continues to work with NIC and has created a new “Safe Arrival” protocol. Before applying, we recommend that you read the information on Canada Homestay Network and their updates on COVID-19, as there may be some restrictions on their services. Please allow at least 5 days for you to apply and confirm a homestay residence through Canada Homestay Network.

All new international students who have already paid your tuition deposit should check their NIC email account for emails with full details on traveling to Canada, quarantine regulations and information regarding accommodation.

We recommend that you get information from reliable sources. Here are some links to COVID-19 related information in Canada:

COVID-19 has created a great deal of uncertainty. There are many factors to consider: spread of the COVID-19, border closures, study permit application processing time to name a few. However, NIC has quickly adapted its programs and courses to allow you to study safely in a digital learning environment.

If you are an applicant for 2021 intakes, please connect with us by emailing study@nic.bc.ca and one of our friendly recruitment staff will help you address your concerns.

If you are a student with approved study permit and will not be able to arrive for the start of the September 2021 semester, please email isa@nic.bc.ca.

NIC will be re-opening it’s doors to the public August 3rd, 2021. However, many private appointments with faculty, advisors and counsellors will remain online for now.For September 2021 term, NIC intends to offer a full complement of courses to support you in achieving your academic goals. This is done in accordance with public health guidelines. We will be resuming many face-to-face courses with some digital and blended (a mix of face-to-face and digital). If you are required on campus for your classes you will be required to attend. If you are not in country but have face-to-face courses scheduled, you need to email isa@nic.bc.ca. There may be changes to the course delivery in the future, should COVID-19 situation change in British Columbia, and we recommend that you check back with us regularly to find out the most up-to-date information.

If you have further questions, please write to us at study@nic.bc.ca and we will respond to you within 24-48 hours. Please note that we are unable to respond to your questions on Saturdays, Sundays or Statutory Holidays.

Please call 250-334-5021. If you do not get an answer, leave a voicemail and someone will call you back as soon as is possible. Be sure to leave a phone number so that we can call you back.

Counselling Services continue to be available through telephone or secure BlueJeans video conferencing appointments only. Please book your appointment online or contact Student Services to make an appointment:

  • Campbell River/Mixalakwila: 250-923-9700 or 1-800-715-0914 (toll-free in Canada)
  • Comox Valley: 250-334-5000 or 1-800-715-0914 (toll-free in Canada)
  • Port Alberni: 250-724-8711 or 1-800-715-0914 (toll-free in Canada)

For additional or out-of-hours support, the following resources are available:

  • Vancouver Island Crisis Line: 1-888-494-3888
  • Vancouver Island Crisis Text: 250-800-3806
  • KUU-US Crisis Line: 1-800-588-8717
  • Here2Talk (24/7 counselling support for post-secondary students)

In an emergency, please call 911.

Yes, there may be funds available to help you with your studies as an NIC student, whether that's for groceries or for technological support such as purchasing a computer to complete your studies. Please contact isa@nic.bc.ca to inquire about financial aid options.

The 2021/2022 timetable has been posted on myNIC Self Service. Please be sure to book an appointment with an international student advisor if you need any assistance planning your courses. Remember a $500 deposit is required before registration and the deposit is due by July 15, 2021 at the latest, to avoid a late deposit fee. Please remember that NIC will be returning to face-to-face instruction for most courses for September 2021. All international students should plan to be living in their NIC community for term start.

Please contact an International Student Advisor by emailing isa@nic.bc.ca or by booking online (phone or skype appointments only) to discuss your situation. A Regulated International Student Immigration Advisor will be able to advise you.

Both MSP and Guard Me will cover COVID-19 related illness. Please make sure your MSP is valid. If your MSP has expired while waiting for a study permit extension, please contact Mark Herringer at mark.herringer@nic.bc.ca for Guard.Me enrollment.

NIC will be returning to face-to-face instruction for most courses for September 2021, all international students should plan to be living in their NIC community for term start. Travel outside of Canada is still not recommended at this time. If you leave, you risk the chance that you will not be permitted back into the country until the Government of Canada has opened the borders. At this point, we do not know when that will be. Digital delivery of class content may not be possible internationally for a variety of reasons. Please consult with an International Student Advisor prior to booking any travel out of Canada.

One of our advisors can support you remotely with this request. You can book a phone appointment with an international student advisor or email isa@nic.bc.ca

You can access the Confirmation of Enrollment Request on the Student Services website. Please scroll to the bottom of the page and select the appropriate form. Once completed, please send an email with the complete form attached to isa@nic.bc.ca. The request will be submitted for Student Records for processing and the letter will be emailed as a PDF to your NIC email. If you need a Confirmation of Enrollment Letter for a study permit extension or co-op work permit, in addition to above two steps, please book a phone appointment with an international student advisor.

One of our advisors can support you remotely with this request. You can book a phone appointment with an international student advisor or email isa@nic.bc.ca.

Students who began in 2020SP/2020FA/2021WI:

-If you are a student who started a program online from outside Canada,  until 30 April 2021, the time you spent overseas will not be deducted from the length of PGWP, provided 50% of your program is eventually completed within Canada.

-If your program is 8-12 months long, and you start in May to September 2020, you can complete your entire program online from overseas and still be eligible for a PGWP.

-If you started a program in May to September 2020, and study online up to 30 April 2021, and graduate from more than one eligible program. You can combine the length of your programs to apply for a PGWP in the future, as long as 50% your studies are completed in Canada.

For more information please see IRCC website.

 

For continuing students who started in 2020WI or earlier:

In Canada

Students who are studying in Canada and whose classes have been moved online due to COVID-19-related health restrictions will remain eligible for the post-graduation work permit.

Outside Canada

Time spent studying outside of Canada in a post-graduation work permit-eligible program offered by an eligible Canadian institution until April 30, 2021, will be counted toward the overall length of the post-graduation work permit, provided the student completes at least 50%  of their program of study’s total courses in Canada (either online or in class).

For more information please see IRCC website.

You can book a phone appointment with an international student advisor or email isa@nic.bc.ca to find out if you are eligible for a scheduled break.

Please connect with an international student advisor before booking any flights to travel.

Please connect with CHN directly for any information regarding CHN homestay. You can  check their website for related information.

Yes, all international students must have medical insurance to study in the Province of BC. New students in BC, studying at NIC will be enrolled in temporary medical insurance with Guard.Me for 90 days when your program begins. All international students are required to apply for MSP upon arrival in BC and will serve the required waiting period before they are eligible for benefits. To apply on-line please visit Medical Service Plan - BC. Enrolling in MSP, paying premiums, and ensuring current coverage MSP is the students responsibility.