Dear UBCO Students,
I hope this message finds you safe and well.
The wildfires in the Okanagan this past week and recently across our country this year have caused significant damage and have greatly impacted our community. Currently, UBCO is unharmed by fires but is on evacuation alert, and the region remains under a Provincial state of emergency and non-essential travel ban. First responders continue to make progress on fires in our region, and we are immensely grateful for the hard work of all emergency personnel. UBCO is central in the effort, housing over 800 firefighters, wildfire personnel, and critical firefighting equipment from across the country.
The community remains vigilant, but there is much more to do to ensure safety. The compassion and support we have received globally and from one another, should be something everyone is proud of. We will recover, together.
I appreciate your patience as we have focused our communication these past few days on those directly impacted by wildfires in the community. The primary means of communication about the status of the campus continues to be our UBCO homepage. We have launched a Wildfire Frequently Asked Questions page as a primary reference for questions.
Although we may not have answers to all your questions at this time, we have shifted our focus to resuming on-campus operations and preparing for the start of the term. Information will be circulated as soon as it becomes available. As we have over the past few days, our services will directly email specific populations of students (e.g. residence students, international students, etc.) with further information as it becomes available, which will also be updated on our FAQ page.
Our campus services, including student services, are currently operating remotely. We appreciate your understanding as our teams respond to inquiries—many of our UBCO staff and faculty have personally been displaced or are on evacuation alert while working to support students.
I want to remind you that financial support is available to students affected by the wildfires. If you have been displaced from your home or are facing financial challenges due to the wildfires, we’re here to help. Please complete the Emergency Funding Form, and the Enrolment Services team will review your request and connect with you as soon as possible.
For those requiring mental health support, please consider accessing the confidential UBC Student Assistance Program, available for free, 24/7, virtually or by phone.
On behalf of everyone here at UBCO, we look forward to welcoming you (or welcoming you back) to our campus soon.
Associate Vice-President, Students