Orientation and Welcome Programs

Studying in a new country can be both exciting and overwhelming. While you are adjusting to a new academic environment and new academic policies, you will also have to adjust to a new culture, new customs, new foods, a different climate, and to being away from your family and friends.

To help international students with their transition to Canada and the U of M, the International Centre offers orientation programs at the beginning of each term. Our programs are an effective and efficient way to get the information you need in a short amount of time.

To register for any of the orientation programs listed below, complete the Program Registration Form and return it to the International Centre office by fax (204-474-7562) or E-mail (international@umanitoba.ca). Register early to avoid disappointment.


Exchange Students coming to the U of M for 1 or 2 terms from a partner institution should contact their U of M Exchange Coordinator for information on how to register for International Centre Orientation Programs.  


Fall & Winter Orientation Programs

Winter Welcome

You may be aware that the start of classes has been delayed for the 2017 Winter term at the University of Manitoba. We understand that you may have made travel plans for the original start date and were not able to change your arrival date. If you are a student who was not able to change your arrival date, then this event is intended for you. Attending the Winter Welcome will give you the opportunity to meet other new students and obtain useful information about Winnipeg and the U of M. Please note that this session does not replace the Winter Orientation. If you are able, it is strongly suggested that you register for both the Winter Welcome and the Winter Orientation

At the Winter Welcome you can expect to:

  • Meet other new international students
  • Get information about the International Centre office and the services we provide
  • Learn about the University of Manitoba
  • Learn about topics that will help you to get settled in Winnipeg such as
    • Taking the bus in Winnipeg
    • Registering for a Manitoba Health Card
    • Opening a bank account
    • Buying winter clothes
    • Getting a cell phone

Date & Time: Tuesday, January 3, 2017   12:00 pm - 3:00 pm
Cost:   FREE
Registration:   Arrival Program Registration Form -Winter 2017 (pdf)

Orientation for New International Students

Attending Winter Orientation will help you get your term off to a great start.  The morning session has been designed specifically for international students and will help to ensure you have a successful transition to life in Winnipeg and to your studies at the U of M.  In the afternoon, you will be grouped with other new students in your program for a tour of the campus and a session covering important information specific to your faculty.  Lunch and refreshments will be provided.  All new international students are strongly encouraged to attend this important orientation event. 

At Orientation you can expect to:

  • Meet other new students from Canada and around the world.
  • Get information to help you get settled in Winnipeg.
  •  Learn about cultural differences in educational settings.
  • Get to know more about your faculty/program of study.
  • Get to know your academic rights and responsibilities.
  • Learn about the services available to you on campus.
  • Explore the campus on a guided tour

Winter 2017:
Date & Time: Tuesday, January 17, 2017   9:00 am - 3:00 pm
Cost:   FREE
Registration:   Arrival Program Registration Form -Winter 2017 (pdf)

Intercultural Retreat

This is a unique one-day intercultural event held just before the start of the fall term each year. It is an opportunity to meet new and returning international students, as well as U of M staff and professors. The day includes intercultural discussions and recreational activities such as rock wall climbing, canoeing/kayaking, swimming, and sports at a beautiful rural retreat.  The Retreat is highly recommended by students who have participated in the past as a way to make friends at the start of the term, develop successful communication strategies in a multicultural context, become better prepared for the Canadian academic environment, and enjoy the beauty of rural Manitoba.  Note: This event is held at the start of the fall term only.

Date:  Fall 2017 (Dates TBA)
Cost:  TBA
Registration:  Contact Sibeso.Maswenyeho@umanitoba.ca to obtain an application form and payment instructions.  Applications will be accepted until spaces are full.

Taking the Bus in Winnipeg Workshop

Winnipeg’s bus transit system is an affordable and convenient transportation option, but it can be confusing when you first start to use it. This half-day session will teach you everything you need to know about taking the bus in Winnipeg. Join us to learn about transit fares and payment procedures, route planning, how to get on and off the bus, signaling your stop, bus etiquette, and more. The session ends with a private transit bus tour to help you practice what you’ve learned while seeing parts of our city.

Date & Time: Friday, January 6, 2017 12:00 - 2:30 pm, & Friday, January 20, 2017 12:00 – 2:30 pm (Please note that you can only sign-up for one of the workshops)
Cost:   FREE
Registration: Arrival Program Registration Form -Winter 2017 (pdf)

Banking, Budgeting, and Taxes in Canada Workshop

A big part of getting settled in a new country is setting up an appropriate and realistic budget. This workshop will teach you about banking in Canada (including how to set up a bank account), using credit cards wisely, tracking your spending, establishing a personal budget, and managing your money effectively. Whether this is your first time managing money or simply your first time managing money in Canada, you’re sure to find this workshop helpful. 

Date & Time: Friday, January 6, 2017, 9:30 - 11:00 am & Friday, January 20, 2017 9:30 – 11:00 (Please note that you can only sign-up for one of the workshops)
Cost:   FREE 
Registration: Arrival Program Registration Form -Winter 2017 (pdf)

International Student Mentorship Program (ISMP)

Through the ISMP you can request to be partnered with an experienced U of M student who will serve as a point of contact and support during your transition to the U of M and Winnipeg.  All Mentors in our program have been trained on how to provide peer-to-peer personal, academic, and intercultural support for new international students.

You and your Mentor will arrange weekly meetings and your Mentor is also expected to communicate via e-mail or text as needed.  You and your Mentor will be partnered for the entire academic term.  The time commitment for this program is 18-20 hours throughout the term.  

Cost:   FREE
Detailed Program Information: ISMP Information Sheet
Registration:  Contact Sibeso.Maswenyeho@umanitoba.ca to obtain an ISMP Application Form.
Fall Application Deadline: Friday, August 19, 2016
Winter Application Deadline:  Friday, December 9, 2016

International Welcome Dinner

This semi-formal event marks the arrival of new international and exchange students and celebrates the ideals of global citizenship and engagement at the University of Manitoba.  This event is held annually in October.  

Summer Orientation Programs 

Summer Orientation Sessions

Starting your classes in the summer?  Our Summer Orientation Sessions are a great way to get the information you need in a format that accommodates busy summer schedules.  Participants will learn about IC programs, get information about U of M policies, become familiar with student services on campus, and more.  Each session will cover the same information, so it is only necessary to register for one.  Students are encouraged to register for the session closest to their arrival date in Winnipeg. 

Dates & Times:  

  • Friday, May 5, 2017   2:00 - 4:00 pm (Dates subject to change)
  • Friday, June 2, 2017   2:00 - 4:00 pm (Dates subject to change)
  • Friday, July 7, 2017    2:00 - 4:00 pm (Dates subject to change)

Cost:   FREE

 Registration for Summer 2016 Orientation Sessions has closed.

Summer Buddy Program

The Summer Buddy Program helps international students adjust to their new environment by matching them with experienced U of M students who can provide friendly support and an orientation to the campus.

Cost:  FREE
Registration:    Registration for the 2017 Summer Buddy Program will begin in Spring 2017

Welcome to the U of M!

Check out our Welcome Video to hear what current international students have to say about the U of M and adjusting to life in Winnipeg! 

Resources for New International Students:

If you are new to Winnipeg, the following resources can help you get settled and familiar with your new city:

Getting Settled in Winnipeg

Shopping:  The Essentials (food, clothing, household items, mobile phones, internet, etc.)

Shopping:  Specialty Food Stores in Winnipeg

Shopping: Where to Buy Winter Clothes

Banking in Winnipeg 

After You Arrive

More resources coming soon!

Past Orientation Presentations:

IC:  What We Do

Navigating the U of M

International Student Success

Academic Success:  Academic Learning Centre

Academic Success:  Academic Integrity

Your Money in Canada Workshop