International Orientation: NC welcomes students new to Canada

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Niagara College is giving a special welcome to a growing number of students who are not only new to college life, but new to Canada.

With more than 1,500 new international students – including postsecondary and ESL students – arriving in Canada to attend NC this fall, the College hosted International Orientation on August 31 and September 1 – prior to its college-wide Orientation Week kicking off September 5.

“International Orientation is designed to support international students on their transition to Canada, the Niagara region and to their studies at NC,” said Sean Coote, director of NC’s International Division. “For many of these students, it will be their first time leaving their country and, for almost all of them, their first time to Canada.”

On Friday, September 1, the College hosted a variety of sessions and activities at its Welland and Niagara-on-the-Lake campuses geared specifically to postsecondary students who are new to Canada. Highlights include:

  • A welcome event including greetings from College president Dan Patterson (NOTL Campus, 9:30-10:30 a.m.) or NC International director Sean Coote (Welland Campus, 9:30-10:30 a.m.); followed by an introduction to college services;
  • An info fair to connect newcomers to Canada with practical information and services such as opening a bank account, applying for a Social Insurance Number, etc., (Welland Campus: 10:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.,  NOTL Campus: 10:30 a.m. to 2 p.m.);
  • International Student Advisor presentation to assist newcomers with essential information regarding immigration, academics, and housing (Welland Campus 1:30-2:30 p.m., NOTL Campus 2-3 p.m.); and
  • A social reception to connect all new NC international students from both campuses (NOTL Campus: 3 to 4 p.m., Students from the Welland Campus will be bussed to NOTL for this event).

On Saturday, September 2, the College planned a full day of fun in Niagara Falls for its new international students. More than 600 students will participate in the trip, which includes riding the Hornblower boat cruise, touring the Falls, and shopping.

In addition to expanding its International Orientation activities this year, the College has enhanced several orientation features for international students, including a NC International Orientation app; a ‘Canada corner’ featuring Canadian themed activities; and a pal mentor program (including online mentor selection with instant chat feature).

Many of the College’s international students live with local families as part of NC’s Homestay program. The program helps students immerse into a new culture while providing a cultural experience for local families who welcome them into their home. For info visit international.niagaracollege.ca/student-services/housing-options/homestay/

For info and a full schedule of International Orientation events, visit international.niagaracollege.ca/orientation/post-secondary-agenda/

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