UBCO Student Housing Response to COVID-19

Last updated: April 9, 2022

Along with UBC, Student Housing has implemented plans to provide the best possible accommodation for our residents given COVID-19 challenges and governmental mandates.

This page contains useful FAQs and resources based on what we currently know, and is being updated regularly following advice from provincial and federal health agencies. Below is a summary of what we currently know, and we appreciate that we will all need to be adaptable and flexible.

Health and safety remains our first priority and we continue to work closely with governmental and post-secondary partners within B.C. to ensure our plans are aligned with health and safety guidelines. Please note that our typical array of amenities and services may be temporarily adjusted due to health and safety directives.

If you are travelling to Canada please visit UBC’s Travelling to Canada During COVID-19 web page for important resources and updates.

For more information about UBC’s plans to welcome students back to campus, mask mandates, rapid testing, and vaccine passports, visit UBC Okanagan’s Returning to Campus page.

WINTER TERM 2 RESIDENCE UPDATES

If my classes are online until Feb. 7, can I still move into residence?

Yes, UBCO student residences and Pritchard Dining Hall have re-opened as of Jan. 9. Students new to residence are able to check in (more info here), and current contract holders can return to their rooms.

If you are returning to Canada you will need to follow public health mandates, which may include self-isolation. Please visit your Student Housing Online Services Centre to confirm the date you are able to move into your assigned residence room.

I have decided to delay coming to campus, and want to move in at a later date than my contract start date--can I do this?

Yes, you are welcome to check in to your assigned residence room on any date after your residence contract start date. If you are moving in later in the term please email information@housing.okanagan.ubc.ca to let us know. Residence fees (accommodation & meal plan) are not dependent on your check-in date and will apply as of the start of your contract.

If I don’t check in to my room until later in the term, do I still have to pay residence fees for January?

Yes, residence fees (accommodation & meal plan) are applicable as of your residence contract start date; they are not prorated based on the date you check in to residence.

I accepted a residence contract starting in January; however, I no longer wish to live in residence. What steps should I take to cancel my contract?

Log into your Student Housing Online Services Centre and submit a contract cancellation form as soon as possible.

I am a new incoming resident, will I receive a refund of my acceptance deposit if I decide to cancel my residence contract?

If you cancel your residence contract prior to your contract start date, your acceptance deposit will be fully refunded. Please note that cancelling your contract forfeits your space in student residence. Students who later wish to live in residence will need to reapply and room offers will be made based on availability.

I am a current resident, but I have decided to move out of residence for Term 2. What steps should I take, and will a cancellation fee be applied?

Submit a contract cancellation form as soon as possible through the Student Housing Online Services Centre . Residents who cancel their contracts and vacate their residence room by January 20, 2022 will only be charged up until the date of checkout and no further cancellation fees will apply.

I am moving to UBCO from outside of Canada. What do I need to know?

If you are travelling to Canada please visit UBC’s Travelling to Canada During COVID-19 web page for important resources and updates. If you require self-isolation due to travel, please  visit the UBC self-isolation website for information about off-campus self-isolation accommodation.

What will be required of me to help keep my community healthy?

COVID-19 Residence Rules are in effect in all student residences managed by UBC Student Housing & Hospitality Services to help maintain the health and safety of yourself and others in the residence community. These rules are informed by direction from BC Public Health, and compliance is mandatory; failure to follow the stated rules may result in residence standards action and/or termination of your residence contract and eviction from residence. Full details along with the rules themselves can be found here.

GENERAL ENQUIRIES

I’m moving into UBC Student Housing. Where can I find information about moving in?

Learn more about moving into residence at UBC on our Moving In page. All incoming Winter Session residents will also receive direct emails with important information about moving in, including adjustments we may make in response to COVID-19.

I have concerns related to the payment of my residence fees, who can I contact for help?

If you would like to discuss a payment plan, our housing administration team is here to help. Please contact us at information@housing.okanagan.ubc.ca

If you’re facing financial hardship or have questions around your finances, please contact Financial Aid at sis.ubco@ubc.ca.

Where can I find more information about student supports?
Can I access a COVID-19 vaccination at UBC?

Free COVID-19 vaccination clinics are occasionally available on campus, and we will advertise these when they become available. Please note that you do not need a BC Personal Health Number, a BC Services Card or to be enrolled in BC’s Medical Services Plan to receive a vaccine.

COVID-19 RESIDENCE RULES AND SAFETY

Tell me more about the COVID-19 Student Housing Health and Safety Rules

Rules are in effect in all Student Residences managed by UBC Student Housing to help maintain the health and safety of yourself and others in the residence community. Compliance is mandatory; failure to follow the stated rules may result in residence standards action and/or termination of your residence contract and eviction from residence. Full details along with the rules themselves can be found here.

Where do I need to wear a mask in residence?

Masks are currently still required in all indoor public spaces on campus. For more information visit our Residence Rules page here and see point #10.

Do students need to be vaccinated to live in residence?

The Provincial Health Officer of British Columbia has lifted the proof of vaccination requirement for students living in residence. See more here.

How is Student Housing helping to mitigate the spread of COVID-19?
  • Promoting the importance of getting fully vaccinated as soon as possible.
  • Promoting resident and staff use of the Rapid Testing Clinics and Vaccination Clinics when available on campus.
  • Promoting COVID-19 and other contagious illness prevention strategies (e.g., good cough etiquette, clean hand hygiene and staying home if ill).
  • Residence staff are trained to refer residents with cold or flu-like symptoms to HealthLink BC at 8-1-1, Student Health Services or a student’s own health care professional.
  • A limited number of self-isolation units are set aside for residents who need to self-isolate.
  • Hand sanitizer dispensers are placed in each Commonsblock and the residence dining rooms.
  • Enhanced cleaning and sanitizing.
For parents: How will you ensure my student doesn’t get sick?

Student Housing continues to take measures that align with guidance from health authorities and help create a healthy, safer and supportive community environment, noting that it takes everyone in the community to accomplish this goal. Please appreciate that when it comes to communicable illnesses, no one can ensure perfect safety from sickness.

COVID-19 PREVENTION, ASSESSMENT, TESTING AND COMMUNICATION

If I'm feeling sick, what should I do?

If you are feeling ill, are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 (such as fever, dry cough, difficulty breathing, or lack of taste or smell), or think you may have come into contact with someone with COVID-19, follow these steps:

  1. Stay home.
  2. Check your symptoms on the BC Centre for Disease Control website.
  3. Use this self-assessment tool to determine your next steps (be that visiting a clinic, testing facility, emergency department, etc).
  4. Contact the front desk for a rapid test kit.
  5. Self-isolate until your test results come back. If you require food, medication, or have other needs while isolating, contact the Front Desk to alert us of your situation, and we will outline supports for you.
  6. If you test positive, please reach out to your RA or the Student Housing Front Desk for next steps.

Visit the BC Centre for Disease Control website for the most up-to-date information about COVID-19.

What will happen if a resident contracts the virus while living in student housing?

A limited number of self-contained suites have been set aside for residents in the event of illness that may require self-isolation/quarantine support. If this occurs, we will work closely with Interior Health to ensure all safety precautions are taken for ill individuals and other residents. Contact the Front Desk for more information.

Will I be told if another person at UBC or on my floor/house/residence is diagnosed with confirmed COVID-19?

In the event of a confirmed case, information would be provided by the relevant health agency, according to their protocols.

What Residence amenities have been adjusted in response to COVID-19?

We will continue to provide the services and amenities that align with guidance from health authorities and help create a healthy, safer, and supportive community environment. Keep in mind that we may have to adjust our services and amenities on an ongoing basis, often on short notice, to align with public health authorities.

What other preventative measures can I take?

The advice from health agencies is:

  • Be fully vaccinated before you arrive to campus or as soon as you are able after arrival.Wash your hands frequently for at least 20 seconds using soap and water.
  • If a sink is not available, 60-90% alcohol-based hand rubs (hand sanitizer) can be used to clean hands if they are not visibly soiled. If they are visibly soiled, you can use an alcohol-based disposable hand wipe to remove the dirt and then use an alcohol-based hand rub.
  • Do not touch your eyes/nose/mouth with unwashed hands.
  • When you sneeze or cough, cover your mouth and nose with a disposable tissue or the crease of your elbow and then wash your hands.
  • Stay home when you are ill to avoid spreading the illness to others.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick with an infection.
  • If you are ill, have flu symptoms like a fever or cough, you should stay home.

AND FINALLY: Please ensure you are familiar with our current COVID-19 Residence Rules (subject to frequent change).

FOOD ON CAMPUS

What Dining options are available?

To see what’s open right now, and where, head here.

What options are available to students who are self-isolating?

UBCO Food Services provides contact-less meal deliveries for all students in self-isolation who are on a meal plan. Learn more here.

Due to COVID-19, additional travel restrictions are in place. International students who are abroad must fulfill specific criteria to be eligible to travel to Canada at this time.

ADDITIONAL QUESTIONS?

Please do not hesitate to reach out to our office and we can direct you to supports.

If you’re facing financial hardship or have questions around your finances, speak to our student services department.

We also understand this is a challenging time for many and we are here to help.

Please check this page regularly for important updates. We also encourage you to stay up-to-date at www.ubc.ca where you will find FAQs with additional resources and information.