Niagara College Opens The Book On A New Academic Year With Strong Enrolment, New Facilities

Niagara College is ready to usher in a new academic year with more than 10,000 students projected to begin their studies after Labour Day – including close to 5,000 new students – along with a full slate of activities and new facilities to welcome them.

“We look forward to welcoming our new and returning students and providing them with an outstanding start to the new academic year,” said College president Dan Patterson, PhD. “We are also excited to unveil several new facilities that will enrich learning environments on our campuses and enhance student life for many years to come.”

New facilities
Sudents will kick off the fall term with newly renovated study spaces at both campuses. The Glynn Family Library and Learning Commons at the Niagara-on-the-Lake Campus, as well as the Eva M. Lewis Library and Learning Commons at the Welland Campus have been renovated, featuring new and additional seating, as well as flexible space to accommodate individual and collaborative work.

September will mark the grand opening of the Marotta Family Innovation Complex at the Niagara-on-the Lake Campus. The new four-storey $18.25-million complex includes new research areas that expand the College’s Canadian Food and Wine Institute Innovation Centre (CFWI IC) and classrooms, in addition to a fitness centre and gymnasium which opened in September 2018.

Renovations are also underway at the Niagara-on-the-Lake Campus that will provide new and updated spaces for NC’s Student Administrative Council, International offices, and Indigenous Education. The new NCSAC offices and International offices are expected to open the week of September 23, while new facilities for Indigenous Education will open in November.

Construction crews have been busy over the summer months to complete extensive road realignment and repave parking lots at the Niagara-on-the-Lake Campus, to create additional parking spaces, make better use of available land, and aid in navigation.

Fall Orientation
The Niagara College Student Administrative Council (NCSAC), and Centre for Student Engagement and Leadership (CSEL) are gearing up to host Fall Orientation at the Welland and Niagara-on-the-Lake campuses from September 3-6 with a new theme for 2019: ‘Orientation Week for All.’

NCSAC president Tom Price noted that by delivering opportunities for social engagement, Orientation plays a key role in stimulating positive well-being for students – particularly for new students who may experience a sense of loneliness during the transition.

“I believe #OWEEKFORALL is essential to the success of all Niagara College students. It provides the opportunity for students to connect with fellow classmates, make friends, and build lasting relationships, all while having fun,” said Price. “I hope that students will make a lifetime of memories and lifelong friends participating in NCSAC events.”

Orientation kicks off on Tuesday, September 3 with a day of activities for new students. For the first time, the College will host a Checklist Fair to help new students manage necessary tasks on their ‘to-do lists’ – from picking up student ID cards, to locker rentals, and ITS help. The day will also include help sessions, program and co-op information sessions, and social initiatives like a free lunch and a pub night at The Core (Welland).

The first day of class (for most full-time programs) on Wednesday, September 4 begins with a welcome back initiative for all students – free coffee, tea and baked goods from 7:30 to 10:30 a.m. at both campuses.

One of the highlights of the week will include a lawn party on Friday, September 6 at the Welland Campus (3-7 p.m.). Students can enjoy the Ferris wheel, carnival rides, browse vendor displays, mark the occasion with a henna tattoo, and pose for a photo near the green wall and more ‘Instagram-worthy’ moments. A shuttle will be available to transport students from the NOTL Campus for this event.

The lawn party will also shine the spotlight on safety, with a live dorm room burn demonstration from the Welland Fire Department scheduled to take place that evening (weather permitting).

Orientation week will also include a courtyard cookout on Wednesday, September 4 at the NOTL Campus (3-7 p.m.), a BBQ lunch on Thursday, September 5 at the Welland Campus (11:30 a.m.-1:30 p.m.) and more. All Orientation week activities are free for NC students to attend. College staff and volunteers will be ready to assist students at ‘Ask Me’ stations, which will be set up at both campuses throughout the first week of classes.

Be NC Ready
The College’s International Division has had a head start in preparing students who are new to Canada for college and life in a new country – from pre-departure to after arrival. The division is offering a full suite of ‘Be NC Ready’ initiatives with a Be NC Ready website, online modules and a new student life app. From August 27-29, ‘Be NC Ready’ orientation sessions were held at the Welland and NOTL campuses addressing topics including housing and lifestyle, education and immigration, and health care and services.

In addition to college-wide Orientation activities, international orientation will be held for English for Academic Preparation students (August 29, 30 and September 3), and postsecondary and graduate students (August 30-31), including a welcome breakfast, an information fair to highlight on-campus international services, games, and an outing to Niagara Falls for a Hornblower Cruise and a shopping trip.

NC is also one of 19 postsecondary institutions in the province to partner with Destination Ontario for a welcome kiosk at Toronto Pearson International Airport running until September 8. The kiosks are set up at terminals one and three to greet international students and provide a variety of services including shuttle and transit info, accommodation and hotels, banking services and currency exchange, special assistance baggage claim, orientation and campus info and more.

Move-in Day
For hundreds of students planning to call campus ‘home’ for the next academic year, the excitement will begin on Labour Day weekend when they move into campus residences. On August 31, 250 students will move into residence at the Welland Campus, and 230 students will move into residence at the Niagara-on-the-Lake Campus. A team of NC volunteers will assist with the move, which will take place from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m.

(Source: Niagara College media release)

Niagara College offers more than 130 diploma, bachelor degree and advanced level programs; as well as more than 600 credit, vocational and general interest Part-Time Studies courses. Areas of specialization include food and wine sciences, advanced technology, media, applied health and community safety, supported by unique learning enterprises in food, wine, beer, distilling, horticulture and esthetics. For more information visit

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