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Preparing to Leave Canada

Things to do before going abroad

Whether you've been nominated to participate in a Dalhousie program or you're pursuing a program independently, there's much to do before going abroad.

Pre-Departure Course

Pre-departure courses go over the checklist and give tips on settling comfortably in your new country. You'll also learn how to avoid emergencies and what to do if something should arise while you are abroad.

All Dalhousie students participating in an international opportunity must meet pre-departure requirements. These are as follows:

  1. Register your emergency contact information and travel details.
  2. Complete  a pre-departure course. We recommend you complete pre-departure at least 2 months prior to your planned departure.

Pre-departure is now a course on Brightspace. To gain access to the course, register your emergency contact information and travel details, then submit the request form below. 

Students are added to Pre-departure at between 12-1 and 3:30-4:30 Monday-Friday. We are closed on holidays. You will be emailed once you have been added to the course. 

Once you have completed all the modules, a certificate of completion will be available for you to use as needed. Funding applications (SWIF, George Burris, FGS Travel Grant, etc.), all require proof that pre-departure requirements have been met

If you have any problems, email international.centre@dal.ca for assistance.

Pre-Departure Course Request Form

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Before you leave

All students going abroad on any international program through Dalhousie are required to register your emergency contact information with the International Centre and you will be directed to a pre-departure orientation session. We give students an emergency phone card at the pre-departure orientation.

When you arrive

Once you arrive in the host country you must register with Global Affairs Canada (GAC) as soon as possible.

  • GAC Registration can be done online. The Canadian embassy can contact you to offer assistance during a natural disaster or civil unrest, or to inform you of a family emergency at home.

Emergency situations

An emergency situation is any situation that puts a student at risk. It might be illness, violent incidents, a student going missing, civil unrest, or a natural disaster in the host country. For most problems you can receive the best support from your host university—seek solutions on site before contacting Dalhousie.


Meet our Study Abroad & Exchange team!

Study Abroad Advisor


Gillian MacDonald

Study Abroad & Exchange Advisor 

Gillian's best piece of advice for exchange students? Take the leap! The world is a beautiful place to explore. 

Gillian grew up in Nova Scotia, but has travelled the globe and lived in many special places. It was leaving the province to go explore the world that has helped her to realize just how truly special Nova Scotia is and she is happy to be living in the area again after many years away from home. 

She has a passion for group facilitation and activities, meaningful and heartfelt discussions over coffee, and loves sharing all that the city of Halifax has to offer. Playing games, gardening, book club and movies, as well as drinking cappuccinos on Monday morning and baking the perfect cookie are some of the things that put a smile on her face. 

Gillian can be reached at: gillian.macdonald@dal.ca

Study Abroad and Exchange Assistant - Inbound

Tara Mody

Study Abroad and Exchange Assistant (Inbound)

The Study Abroad and Exchange Assistant can be reached at inboundexchange@dal.ca  

Study Abroad and Exchange Assistant - Outbound

Delainey Wescott

Study Abroad and Exchange Assistant (Inbound)

The Study Abroad and Exchange Assistant can be reached at outboundexchange@dal.ca