More of Dalhousie’s international students can enter into Nova Scotia now that the university has been added to the federal government’s list of approved Designated Learning Institutions (DLIs).
This list, implemented last month by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada, allows DLIs to reopen their campuses to students who are currently studying outside of the country and who wish to return to Canada to complete their studies.
Cynthia Murphy, Dal's director of student experience, says that easing of these travel restrictions (effective for Dal from Tuesday, November 3) will benefit both international students and the university’s campus and community.
“International students enrich our communities and campuses while contributing to academic and social diversity. Dalhousie is a better place because we welcome more than 4,000 international students each year,” says Murphy.
During the COVID-19 pandemic, most of Dalhousie’s programs and courses have shifted to online learning. Although most students have been able to successfully transition to this new academic environment, Murphy says some international students who returned to their home countries experienced “logistical challenges such as time zone differences and Internet connectivity that have sometimes affected learning. Being able to complete their education online while living in Halifax either on or off campus, will be a benefit for many of them.”
Ensuring a safe transition
There are strict public health protocols in place to ensure the safe transition of international students returning to Nova Scotia. Dalhousie worked closely with the Nova Scotia Department of Labour and Advanced Education and public health officials in developing a readiness plan for welcoming students back to campus and ensuring all health and safety requirements are met.
The small number of students who have already returned to Dal this year have done so through a different process.
As part of the new plan, international students who want to travel back to Canada for the fall and winter semesters will need to quarantine in a secure, off-campus location for the first 14 days. As a DLI, Dalhousie will have oversight responsibility for international students during their quarantine. The university must provide quarantine accommodations and suitable transportation from the airport for international students and ensure meals and other supports are provided during their quarantine period.
Prior to making travel arrangements, students must first contact Dalhousie’s International Centre, whose advisors will create a plan with students that includes coordinating travel documents, quarantine details, and other health and travel requirements.
More details about travel and quarantine requirements can be found on the International Centre’s Immigration & COVID-19 Updates page.
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