What is open/closed at VIU?

In response to the evolving COVID-19 situation, and direction from the federal and provincial governments to reduce face-to-face interactions, VIU is still providing supports and services to students and employees while implementing social distancing strategies.

How to access services at VIU’s Nanaimo campus:

  • Many of the buildings on VIU’s Nanaimo campus are now locked and accessible only to employees and students who have card/fob access. This is to increase the safety and security of those still accessing our lower-traffic buildings. The buildings that remain open are:
    • B200 (Medical Clinic: 8:30 am to noon on Wednesdays only)
    • B300 (convenience in cafeteria area, from 11 am to 1 pm)
    • and B305 (via card access).
  • Campus Security is still providing first aid at the Nanaimo Campus, Cowichan Campus and VIU Residences.
  • The Library Commons is open 24/7 via card access, with a maximum of 50 people in the area at once. Please review Library information from our Library team to learn more about the available supports and opening hours.
  • The Upper Cafeteria closed on Friday, March 20, 2020, at 3:30 pm, until further notice. The building will remain open, with seating limited to 50 people. The Lower Cafeteria is closed until further notice. To ensure some options remain, Ancillary Services will be opening a temporary convenience store in Building 300 for students and employees. Hours of this service will be Monday to Friday, 11 am to 1 pm, with social distancing measures put into place.
  • Student Affairs will be supporting students while engaging in social distancing whenever possible. See the Student Affairs for further details on how to access services.
  • International Student Services remains open and is pleased to provide remote service delivery. Please visit International Student Services for more information about drop-in hours and appointments.

  • Registration Services are available by phone (250-740-6400) and email at registration@viu.ca.
  • The Welcome Centre is available by phone (250-753-3245) and by email at info@viu.ca.
  • VIU’s Writing Centre is no longer open for face-to-face meetings; all appointments will be through e-tutoring. If you have any questions, please contact john.hill@viu.ca.
  • International Academic Support (IAS) has moved to an e-tutoring model. If you have any questions, email sylvia.arnold@viu.ca.
  • IT Services: Please review these guidelines from our IT department for working remotely and promoting social distancing. All requests should be handled via email or phone to ensure adequate social distancing. Please email ithelp@viu.ca or phone 1-236-362-1121. 
  • Distance counselling for VIU students is available through VIU Counselling Services from Monday to Friday, 8:30 am - 4 pm. To book an appointment:

    For domestic students:

    Call 250.740.6416, leave a voice message with your name, student number and email, and you will be contacted by Counselling Services to set up an appointment. 

    For international students:

    Email counselling.international@viu.ca (this email is monitored Monday to Friday from 8:30 am - 4 pm). Indicate your name and student number only (the auto-reply from the email will indicate next steps). You will be contacted by International Counselling Services to set up an appointment.

  • The Medical Clinic on VIU’s Nanaimo Campus remains open on an appointment basis only. Patients can continue to leave a message at 250-740-6620 to book telephone appointments.
  • The Campus Store: The Campus Stores in Nanaimo and Cowichan are closed to the public until further notice, but online ordering remains available. Visit the Campus Store to place your order.
  • Print Services: will be working with the community via email until further notice. If you need to submit a print job, co-ordinate a pick-up of a print job or have a print shop question please email printing@viu.ca. If you have any inquiries regarding Managed Print, please email managed.print@viu.ca.

Closed on the Nanaimo campus until further notice include:

  • The Lower Cafeteria (Building 185)
  • The Gym (Building 190)
  • The VIU Students’ Union Building (193), including the Pub
  • VIU Starbucks
  • The View Gallery
  • The Malaspina Theatre
  • Shq’apthut – VIU’s Aboriginal Gathering Place


Other campuses/facilities:

Cowichan Campus

The Cowichan campus has moved to reduced hours effective today (Monday, March 30, 2020). The main doors will be unlocked to allow students access to the Learning Commons from 10 am to 3 pm, Monday to Saturday, until further notice. All departments have discontinued on-site operations and are offering remote options for service only.

Please email advising.cowichan@viu.ca if you would like an Educational Advisor/Counsellor to contact you by email, phone or Zoom meeting. Please provide your full name, phone number, student number (if applicable), best times to reach you during our regularly scheduled work week and your preferred way for us to contact you. Educational Advisor/Counsellors will be available Monday to Friday from 8:30 am - 3:30 pm.

Please see Campus Hours for departmental contact info. The Campus Welcome Centre was moved off site as of Friday. Callers to the switchboard are encouraged to leave a message, and voicemails are being monitored and responded to regularly, as is email to welcome.centre@viu.ca. All other service departments are also responding to requests by email and voicemail only.

One exception is the campus library. Staff are answering phones from 9 am to 4 pm Monday to Friday, and are responding to help queries by email, phone and real-time chat and videoconferencing where appropriate. Learn more: Library Information.

Parksville/Qualicum Centre

The Parksville-Qualicum Centre remains open via remote services (email). This is due to the restricted access to the building as the City of Parksville has closed the Parksville Civic and Technology Centre (PCTC) to the public, which the centre is located in. To contact the Parksville campus, email pqcampus@viu.ca or phone 250-248-2096 and messages will be returned.

All ElderCollege classes for March and April have been cancelled. 

Powell River Campus

The Powell River campus has reduced opening hours to 10 am – 3 pm. The front office is now closed to the public and any inquiries can be sent to the general email prcampus@viu.ca. Emails will be responded to by the campus’s front office or student services staff either on campus or from home. Educational Advising and Counselling calls/enquiries/appointments will be managed through video or telephone.

Milner Gardens & Woodland, G.R. Paine Horticultural Centre and Deep Bay Marine Field Station are closed to the public until further notice.