Boats in a harbour with a city in the background

VIU for out-of-province students

Make your time at university memorable

Experience Island life while you get an education tailored to your goals. From the moment you step onto campus, your success – in academics and in life – is a VIU priority.  

For many Canadians, Vancouver Island is the preferred destination for recharging and connecting with nature. VIU is perfectly situated on the Island. It’s a 1.5-hour ferry ride from Vancouver, where you can satisfy your craving for big-city life. And it’s close to the wild and natural beauty Vancouver Island is famous for.

Study breaks that include outdoor activities are good for a healthy life balance. With hiking and cycling trails within minutes of campus, that balance is easy to achieve at VIU.

Paddlers in kayaks on the ocean

Explore the Island with a guide

Outdoor Recreation

With VIU’s Outdoor Recreation program you can experience the best Vancouver Island has to offer. Outdoor Rec adventures inlude equipment, accommodation and instruction. They’re scheduled throughout the school year and feature activities like:

  • hiking
  • surfing
  • kayaking
  • skiing
  • climbing

Getting here

VIU is in the city of Nanaimo. You can fly to Nanaimo from most Canadian cities, and there are many direct flights available. If you travel by car, there are two options for ferries to Nanaimo. 

Staying here - housing 

VIU offers first year students priority in residence. In student housing, you’ll meet other students from around the world, and you’ll make lifelong friends. You’ll have hiking and cycling trails right outside your door, and you can take part in fun activities organized by VIU staff. Want to live off-campus? We can help with off-campus housing as well. 

Learning here

With over 120 programs and dedicated, award-winning faculty, VIU has something for every student. You'll get personal attention from your instructors, and you'll have opportunities to take part in meaningful research. You can start your research journey as early as first year. 

Paying for your education

Education is an investment that pays off. VIU staff can help you navigate the financial options. These include scholarships and bursaries as well as research grants. See the Financial Aid & Awards page for details.

Provincial equivalencies 

The course requirements on our site are for BC courses, so you'll need to look at the provincial equivalencies page to make sure you have the prerequisites you'll need for your program of choice. 

Want to know more?

Take part in an upcoming virtual information session.

Virtual info sessions

At sessions for future students we cover all the basics and answer your questions. We will be joined by current VIU students who will share their experiences and insights about transitioning to university.

Virtual Future Student Events
6:30pm­­–7:30pm Pacific Time

Select the date below to sign up.

January 17, 2023

February 15, 2023

March 14, 2023

At student life sessions we cover all the basics about student activities and resources. We'll also answer your questions.

Virtual Student Sessions
6:30pm­­–7:30pm Pacific Time

Select the date below to sign up.

January 31, 2023

February 28, 2023

March 28, 2023

Smiling young woman holding a notebook.

Join us at VIU

As a VIU student you’ll get an education that sets you up for success in all that you do. And you’ll have a student experience filled with adventure and friendships that last a lifetime.

Apply now

Enter to win!

Grand prize Vancouver Island Stay and Play

Sign up for VIU emails and be entered to win a grand prize Vancouver Island Stay and Play valued at $2500.

You’ll also be entered to win monthly draws for VIU swag prize packs valued at $150.