A VERY WARM WELCOME TO YOU!
THE OFFICE OF INTERNATIONAL SERVICES AND PROGRAMS ABROAD AT BROCK UNIVERSITY IS HERE TO HELP YOU MAKE A SUCCESSFUL TRANSITION TO YOUR NEW LIFE IN CANADA. PLEASE VISIT US WHEN YOU ARRIVE AT BROCK.
Once you have received your official Letter of Acceptance from Admissions, Brock University, you should begin procedures to obtain your Study Permit. You must apply for a Study Permit from the appropriate Canadian Embassy, High Commission, or Consulate (http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/information/offices/missions.asp) (A Study Permit is not required if you will be studying in Canada for less than six months). The application fee for a Study Permit Approval Letter is $125 (Canadian dollars). This fee is payable at the time the application is made but does not guarantee a Permit will be issued. Citizens of the United States may obtain a Study Permit at the border when they enter Canada, with their letter of acceptance, proof of citizenship and proof of funds.
Temporary Resident Visa – TRV (Visitor’s Visa)
In addition to a Study Permit, citizens of certain countries require a Temporary Resident Visa to enter Canada. To find out whether you require an entry visa, please refer to: http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/visit/apply-how.asp
Arrival in Canada
Before you land in Canada the airline will provide you with a Canada Customs Declaration form (http://www.cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/publications/forms-formulaires/e311-eng.pdf). The Canada Border Security Agency website provides information on this declaration form at: http://cbsa-asfc.gc.ca/noncan-eng.html
On arrival at the airport, follow the signs for Arrivals to the Customs and Immigration area. The officer at the booth will want to see your passport and Study Permit Approval letter. The officer may ask you questions about the purpose of your visit to Canada and also what you are bringing into Canada. A Study Permit will be issued at this time. The following website provides information on arriving in Canada: http://www.cic.gc.ca/english/visit/arriving.asp
Visa to the U.S.
Brock University is only 15 kilometers away from the Canada/U.S. border. If you plan on visiting the U.S. soon after your arrival, we strongly advise you to apply for a visa in your home country before you leave for Canada. The American Consulate requires students to provide proof of ties outside the U.S. before they issue a visa (see: http://travel.state.gov/visa/frvi/denials/denials_1361.html). If you apply for a visa soon after arriving in Canada you have not had the time to establish ties in Canada and are therefore more likely to be refused a visa. For further information, please check the website for U.S. Visa Service at www.usvisa-info.com
Payment of fees
The University does not mail a statement to request payment. Students are financially responsible for all tuition and related fees associated with registered courses. To determine your account balance, you may access your Financial Account Information on-line through the portal (https://my.brocku.ca). Additional information is available at: http://www.brocku.ca/finance/students/undergraduate/making-payments
Things to bring with you in your hand luggage
Visa Letter from the Canadian Embassy/High Commission
Letter of Admission
Address and telephone number of your arranged accommodation
Prescription medicines – any prescribed drugs you are taking. It is also advisable to carry a note from your doctor explaining why you are taking the medicine
Extra pair of prescription glasses (if you use them)
Arrival by Air
Lester B. Pearson Airport (http://www.torontopearson.com) in Toronto, Ontario, is the closest Canadian airport to St. Catharines. It is 120 kilometers away and takes approximately one and a half hours to travel.
Buffalo Niagara International Airport (http://www.buffaloairport.com/) in the US is the closest airport to St. Catharines. It is 70 kms from St. Catharines. Upon arrival in Buffalo, New York, you would have to drive across the Canada/US border to get to Brock University.
Niagara Airbus shuttle offers transportation from Toronto and Buffalo airports to St. Catharines. Reservations and pricing information is available at: www.niagaraairbus.com
Currency and Sales Tax
Try to have at least $300 (Canadian or U.S.) in cash when you arrive for your immediate needs like food and transportation. Prices quoted in stores, restaurants, hotels, etc. are base price; 13% Harmonized Sales Tax (HST) will be added on when you pay for an item. Picture of Canadian coins:
Registration for undergraduate courses is done over the Internet. The Office of the Registrar will send you information about registration. Also, please refer to the Registrar’s website (www.brocku.ca/registrar) for important dates regarding course registration and timetables. If you need assistance to register, please contact the Office of International Services & Programs Abroad.
Please visit the Faculty of Graduate Studies website at: www.brocku.ca/gradstudies for detailed information about registration, funding, scholarship opportunities, workshops and events, and all other important information about your graduate studies at Brock.
The Faculty of Graduate Studies is proud of their close interaction between graduate faculty and graduate students. Graduate students at Brock are part of a vibrant research community that focuses on involvement, engagement and productivity. Workshops, social events and informative sessions are offered throughout the year.
As part of your admission to Brock University, the University Health Insurance Plan (UHIP) is mandatory for you and your family who come to Canada. For information on coverage and current premium rates, please see www.uhip.ca. If you need additional information regarding UHIP, please write to email@example.com
Prescription drugs are covered (coverage to a maximum of 80 per cent of the cost of the drugs prescribed) by the mandatory health insurance plan provided by the Brock University Students’ Union for undergraduate students, and the Graduate Students’ Association for graduate students (VIP Student). For further information, please refer to: www.studentvip.ca/busu/ (for undergraduate students) or www.brocku.ca/graduate-students-association/gsa-services/health-dental (for graduate students).
Spouses and families
If your family is coming with you to Canada and you need help finding information about schools, daycare and healthcare etc., please visit our website and click on International Student Guide. http://www.brocku.ca/international-services/student-services
Driving in Canada
If you intend to drive in Canada, you should obtain an international driver’s license in your country before coming to Canada. It will be valid for 90 days. After that, you will have to apply for an Ontario driver’s license. For more information, see www.mto.gov.on.ca
The “Big 5” banks in Canada are:
The Bank of Nova Scotia (Scotiabank)
Royal Bank of Canada
Bank of Montreal (BMO)
Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce (CIBC)
TD Canada Trust
Scotiabank is the only bank available on campus, however, all banks are located downtown St.Catharines, or at the shopping malls for easy convenience.
GSA (Graduate Students’ Association)
Graduate Students at Brock are part of a vibrant research community that focuses on involvement, engagement and productivity. We are proud of our close interaction between graduate faculty and graduate students. Workshops, social events and informative sessions are offered throughout the year. Please visit the Office of Graduate Studies website at: www.brocku.ca/graduate-students-association for more information.
BUSU (Brock University Students’ Union)
Be it your student experience, quality of life as a student, or anything else related to academics, education, or your experience transitioning to or from university, BUSU is here to help you. For more information, please visit www.busu.net
The BrockGuide Program works by matching up a newly arrived international student with a Brock student, a peer partner. If you are interested in joining the BrockGuide Program, write to the Office of International Services and Programs Abroad.
Food in St. Catharines, Niagara
If you like particular foods, St. Catharines has many stores that offer a variety of foods and spices from around the world. If it is not available in St. Catharines, it will be in Toronto! You can save yourself the trouble of carrying it with you.
If you plan on bringing electrical appliances, keep in mind that electricity in Canada is 110 volts, 50Hz.
In St. Catharines, you will enjoy four seasons, so you will need clothes to suit the climate changes. For information about the weather, please refer to Environment Canada’s website at: www.weatheroffice.com
Celebration of Nations!
This festival of cultures is a wonderful success each year. Students are invited to share their cultures with others through music, food, clothing and artifacts during this celebration of the international community here at Brock University. We encourage all international students to take part and to bring items from home to showcase and share with fellow students and faculty.
And finally, Orientation
It is very important that all new international students attend the Orientation Day that is organized by the office of International Services & Programs Abroad to learn about the academic culture at Brock University, banking, the library, payment of fees, as well as to learn about the international clubs on campus and the many social activities for international students.
John Kaethler, Director, firstname.lastname@example.org
Christina Bosilo, Manager, International Learning Programs, email@example.com
Arthur Chen, Manager, International Student Services, firstname.lastname@example.org
Jeanette Davis, Office Administrator, email@example.com
Elna Mayberry, UHIP assistant and Office Receptionist, firstname.lastname@example.org
International Centre, GLNB-210
Open Monday to Friday,
8:30 a.m. to 12 noon and
1 p.m. to 4:30 p.m.
The Office is closed for lunch from 12 noon to 1:00 pm.
Telephone number during office hours: 1 (905) 688-5550, ext.4785
Emergency telephone number – Campus Security – 1. 905.688.5550, ext. 3200
Keep in touch with us!
Facebook group for international students at Brock: http://www.facebook.com/groups/356657894378937/
Campus Map: http://brocku.ca/facilitiesmgmt/CAMPUS-MAP-LRG.htm
We look forward to meeting you on your arrival!
Canadian Government – information on Canada: www.canada.gc.ca
Currency Converter: www.xe.com/ucc/
Canadian news: www.cbc.ca
Time Zone Website: www.worldtimezone.com/
City of St. Catharines: www.stcatharines.ca