North Island College is switching up the way students will take part in orientation day this year.

It’s usually held on the first Tuesday after the Labour Day long weekend and gives students the chance to see where their classes are, meet their instructors and classmates, and learn about the services and supports available at NIC.

This year, orientation will roll out throughout the summer with virtual sessions, webinars and video tours of campus to help students prepare for the first day of class.

“The first day of college can be overwhelming at the best of times, but this year has a heightened level of uncertainty for our students,” said Kathleen Kuhnert, associate vice president, student services and registrar. 

“We wanted to make sure students were prepared well in advance so they can feel confident they have the tools and supports they need on their first day of class.”

Along with the virtual NIC experience, students will have the opportunity to take part in digital webinars, hosted by NIC’s director of teaching and learning innovation.

The webinars will give students an inside look at what they will be learning, what technology they will need, what platforms they’ll be using and the resources available to help support them. 

They will be held on several dates throughout July.

NIC says the official orientation will launch on August 4th, when all orientation day resources and supports will be pushed live.

“We wanted to let students know when they can expect to see this information roll out and also reassure them that it will be available well before the first day of class,” said Kuhnert.

“We also encourage our students to reach out if they have any questions or concerns and also to join our Student Life Facebook group as a way to connect with other students, staff and faculty in the NIC community.”

The school’s Office of Global Engagement is also working to develop specific orientation pieces for NIC’s international students, which can be accessed both in Canada and around the world, starting August 4th. 

New international student orientation will take place the week of Aug. 31st, so students are well prepared for their first day of classes.

“We know it’s not the same as being on campus, in person, but we are committed to providing students with as many opportunities to connect as we can, both before classes start and throughout the fall term.”