Congratulations! You’ve accepted your offer and now it’s time to plan your International Pathway to Success at Brock University.
The Brock International Pathway to Success represents a guide on Brock International’s Sakai site to help international students prepare for their first term at Brock University and in Canada.
Similar to the Campus-Wide Co-Curriculum, students are encouraged to complete various steps by either attending an event on ExperienceBU or engaging in other tasks that help students stay on the path to success. The end goal is for students to have a clear path going forward and for there to be less ambiguity with regards to what they must do before, during, and after their time at Brock. There are 4 main stages for students to complete, each allowing them to do so at their own pace while also suggesting the most ideal timeline to complete each Stage:
- Stage 1: After Acceptance
- Stage 2: Pre-Semester Prep
- Stage 3: First Week
- Stage 4: At Brock
Stage 1: After Acceptance
Below are the steps students should complete after they have been accepted to Brock University.
Whether you are travelling to Canada or understanding the conditions of your acceptance, your offer letter is an important key to your education and should be accepted as soon as possible.
Once you accept your offer from Brock, don’t forget to save it as a PDF or take a screenshot so you can go back to it; you never know when you will need it!
As you begin your Brock journey, it is imperative that you use your Brock email; this will ensure that you reach the correct people, have access to all of Brock’s services, and all in all set you up for success!
You should also review your Multi-Factor Authentication settings.
Why should I review my MFA settings?
MANY students have had issues accessing their Brock account once they arrive in Canada because of Multi-Factor Authentication. Essentially, once students get a new phone or phone number in Canada, they are unable to login to their accounts because they can no longer verify their identity with:
- SMS texts
- phone calls
To ensure you avoid these issues, you should modify your MFA settings using ITS’s guide. and set up the Microsoft Authenticator app on your phone to verify using the app instead.
Should you experience issues, feel free to contact ITS by submitting a Help Desk Ticket.
A study permit is a document issued to international students that allow them to study at an approved institution in Canada. It is important that you apply for your permit and/or other required immigration documents as soon as possible and before you travel to Canada so that you allow enough time for approval.
Applying does not guarantee approval, therefore we suggest that you learn more about all the required immigration documents on Brock’s Immigration Advising website and reach out to Brock International for more support, either in a drop-in session, 1-on-1 appointment, info session, or via email at email@example.com.
Microsoft Office is the main software that Brock students use to be successful in their studies.
From attending virtual classes and meeting with your professors online using MS Teams to completing assignments using MS Word, Excel, and PowerPoint, MS Office is an important tool for your success! Therefore, don’t forget to download all the MS Office 365 apps to both your computer and phone – it’s free!
Sakai is Brock’s learning management system and the main platform for your course content, apart from MS Teams and in-person lectures. Therefore, it is imperative that you familiarize yourself with Sakai and all its great features to be as prepared as possible to study with us, whether you are doing so virtually or in-person!
If you are an international student and want to learn more, feel free to check out Brock International’s Sakai site, Brock INTL – Your Pathway to Success, and learn all about Sakai in their Academic Support tab!
A huge part of being a Brock student is not just taking classes, but also engaging with the Brock community and experiencing Brock to its fullest! By learning about ExperienceBU, the Campus-Wide Co-Curriculum (CWC), and campus life at Brock, you can begin to take full advantage of the Brock experience and make your time at Brock as memorable as possible.
What are you waiting for? Login to ExperienceBU today and explore all the different ways to engage within the Brock community!
Do you wonder what the academic expectations are in Canada? Do you want to learn about the most essential academic skills you will need to be successful at Brock?
Visit Brock International’s Sakai site and explore the Academic Support tab to learn all that you need to know before you begin your studies.
Stage 2: Pre-Semester Prep
Below are the steps students should complete around the time you need to register for classes.
Brock’s SmartStart program gives you exclusive access to content designed to make your transition to Brock a successful one. Led by a team of current students and supported by the broader campus community, this program will provide answers to all of your questions, including areas such as Course registration, finance, residence & off-campus living, and much more!
Once you are eligible to register for classes, it is important that you do so to avoid classes filling up or to address any initial issues with registration. With the help of Brock’s Undergraduate Course Registration page or Brock’s Graduate Course Registration page, you will be all set to register for your classes.
Once you receive confirmation that you are free to travel to Canada, the next step is to find your accommodations (where to live).
Once you have found a place to live in Canada, it is important that you update your address on my.brocku.ca!
If you are arriving to Niagara prior to your residence move-in date, you may want to consider short-term accommodations.
Though you may not think of it, providing your emergency contact information is very important; it allows us to have a person to contact in case of emergencies and can give you more peace of mind when studying in another country.
Click on our tip sheet below and learn how to update your emergency contact today!
As you plan to travel to Canada, it can be confusing to identify all that you need to do, especially when it comes to having certain documents ready.
Be sure to review the International Student Travel Requirements for the ideal steps to take to be ready!
Not sure what to pack? Want to make sure you bring all the necessary items for living & studying in Canada?
After you have found a place to live, it is time to plan for when you arrive!
Brock does NOT currently provide transportation from the airport. However, we can recommend some great options to book in advance so that you can have a smooth transition from the airport to your destination. Below are the airport transport companies we would recommend:
Health care not only provides you with health services while you study in Canada, but it can also protect you if ever you encounter a health emergency.
There are two parts to your health insurance as Brock students in Undergraduate or Graduate programs: UHIP & Student VIP.
- UHIP – It covers eligible medically necessary health services and medical treatments. Essentially, when you see a doctor, go to a hospital, or do a medical test, you use UHIP.
- You will receive an email at the beginning of term from Cowen Insurance with information on registering your UHIP and accessing the portal!
- StudentVIP – It has drug coverage, extended health coverage, vision coverage, dental coverage, etc. Essentially, when you buy medicine, see a dentist, take eye exams, or have to buy glasses, you use your StudentVIP.
Brock International hosts several pre-arrival webinars with international students in mind. From Immigration topics like study permits and Visas, to academic skills topics like online learning platforms and academic expectations in university, these webinars are here to help and guide you!
BU101 is a free online academic skills program that you can complete at your own pace before your classes begin. Build your technology, scheduling, note-taking, and studying skills.
Learn all about BU101 and consider signing up by checking out their website.
Our New International Student Orientation is aimed at getting new international students familiar with the Canadian and academic culture, as well as policies and services at Brock that are available throughout your studies to ensure that you succeed as a Brock Badger!
You can expect to learn about:
- Canadian Culture (e.g., norms, expectations, daily life needs, getting around)
- Academic Culture (e.g., course formats & expectations, academic integrity)
- Important Dates
- UHIP & Health Insurance
- Student Life & Engagement
After registering for classes, you should confirm that you paid your tuition, and any other fees associated with your account. This is to ensure that you didn’t forget to do so and that you don’t have any late fees!
Don’t know what fees you need to pay? Not sure how to make a payment? Check out Brock’s resources below:
Stage 3: First Week
Below are the steps students should complete before and during the first week of classes at Brock University.
Your student ID card is essential, especially if you intend to live on campus or utilize the public transit system. From paying for food at various locations on campus to traveling around St. Catharines and the Niagara region with the U-PASS, getting your student ID card is a must.
Check out Brock’s Get your Student ID website for detailed instructions on how to get your card!
To get your U-Pass sticker, please visit the BUSU Reception Desk (open week days from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.), upstairs in the Student-Alumni Building.
Getting a Canadian cell phone plan is one of those tasks that may seem easy, but once you begin looking, it can seem overwhelming. You can gain tips on getting a cell phone plan in Canada on the link below.
Opening a Canadian bank account will not only make your life easier when making purchases, but it can also facilitate getting paid should you decide to work in Canada. You can learn all about getting a bank account in Canada on Brock International’s Sakai site.
Every class will have different requirements when it comes to the textbooks you need. Some might require more than one while others may not require any; regardless, it is important to use the Campus Store’s textbook search feature and ensure that you have the textbooks you need to succeed in your courses.
International students are automatically enrolled in UHIP once they register for classes and begin their studies. To access UHIP information (including the UHIP eCard) and to submit claims, students should access their UHIP portal.
How do I enroll my family members in my health plans?
If students have a spouse or dependent children living with them while they study or work in Ontario, the dependent must also be enrolled in UHIP. Dependants are not automatically enrolled in UHIP. Students are required to enrol their dependent family member(s) within 30 days of their arrival in Canada to avoid a late fee of $500.
Check out Brock International’s UHIP website to learn about enrolling dependents.
To learn about enrolling dependents on your StudentVIP plans, please contact:
- firstname.lastname@example.org (undergraduates)
- OFFICE@BROCKGSA.CA (graduates)
We take your safety very seriously at Brock and you should too! It is very important that you learn about the role of the police in Canada, how they can help you, and what to do should you need to reach out to the police while here. Therefore, please watch the video below learn all about police and safety in Canada!
If you plan to work while studying in Canada, you need to apply for a Social Insurance Number first! Please see Brock International Services’ Immigration Advising webpage for more details on how to do so.
Brock International’s Academic Coach program is designed solely to help with transitioning to university and in developing the essential academic skills needed for success; from weekly 1-on-1 meetings to ongoing support via email, you can discuss the essential academic and language skills that YOU specifically want to develop.
If you are a new international student at Brock, be sure to check your email for the sign-up form a few weeks before the start of your first term!
Stage 4: At Brock
Below is the next step for current students once they have completed Stage 3 and have begun their studies at Brock.
Sometimes, our initial plans change, or we may need additional advice going forward, and so your Academic Advisor/Program Coordinator is a great person to consistently meet with each semester!
Do I really need academic skills support? Can’t I just learn the information given to me in courses and then figure it out?
You could do that, but one thing we notice with students is that they often enter university without all the academic skills they need to do well in their classes (e.g., writing, reading, time management, study strategies, citing/referencing, etc.). You need academic skills in order to do your assignments and assessments, and so it can be said that if you do not have strong academic skills, then you will have a hard time succeeding in your courses.
If you want to develop a strong foundation in academic skills, check out Brock International’s Academic Skills Support!
Additionally, if you want to build on that strong foundation or if you want to pay for tutoring, check out Learning Services!
Did you know that Brock University students have access to services provided by the Student Wellness and Accessibility Centre (SWAC) as part of their ancillary fees paid annually?
From personal counselling to crisis resources, to even a Wellness HUB where students can drop in to chat with a Peer Health Educator about ways to improve their overall health and wellness, there is lots available to help you throughout your studies!
What else can the Brock Library provide you other than access to books and articles? A lot! Our James A. Gibson Library has MANY services available to you, including:
- Research Consultations with Liaison Librarians
- Research Help on Demand
- Library Workshops (e.g., Intro to Research, Library Yoga, etc.)
- And much more!
Click here to start learning about the many services just waiting to be explored!
Brock Human Rights and Equity works with many other departments and services on campus to prevent harassment and discrimination from occurring and to quickly address incidents as they arise. If you witness or experience harassment/discrimination and would like support from experienced staff, Brock Human Rights & Equity is here to support you!
There is nothing worse than experiencing fraud or scams while studying as a student. Take action to protect yourself from these experiences by learning more about frauds and scams in Canada, either by attending a workshop or by accessing all the resources on the Brock INTL – Your Pathway to Success Sakai site!