In short, YES! Absolutely. SFU provides great student resources and services on-campus and online! Being a student is tough, and you should feel comfortable reaching out to people and places where you can find assistance, whether it be for mental-health, academic, or personal wellbeing. Even if you don’t reach out personally, there are also some great written resources to help you out (and you don’t need to talk to anyone). The following guide is here to help you make note of some of these key resources so you’ll know where to look when you need clarification or a place to get your questions answered!
Let’s start off with the very best place to start: the Student Services Registrar
With locations at all three campuses (Burnaby, Surrey, and Vancouver), you’ll be able to easily access them on campus. If you’re studying remotely or don’t have time to go in-person, they are available by telephone or through their LiveHelp chat function. LiveHelp is a service that will connect you to a volunteer knowledgeable in your specific concern/question area, which is helpful if you require immediate help!
Locations: Burnaby: 3200 Maggie Benston Centre
Surrey: Mezzanine, top of the entrance staircase
Vancouver: 1100 Harbour Centre
For full hours and availability, please visit the website above, as these may vary. Please note that due to COVID-19, there is no in-person availability for the time being.
Next, a great website to check out is SFU’s available services and resources, which outlines availability and information for Health and Counselling Services, Academic Advising, International Services, Recreation, and Interfaith Centre. This provides a good hub for COVID-19 related concerns, such as mental health while studying online, building resilience, mindfulness and meditation, and more. Academic advising can help with planning your degree, choosing your major/minor, and providing additional tools to ensure your academic success!
Some more examples of what you can get out of Academic Advising, for example, include access to success strategies and tools, a handy GPA calculator, career services, and the student learning commons. This is where you are able to attend workshops to develop better writing skills and build on your grammar and citations. (Super helpful for papers!) Academic Advising also offers LiveHelp (similar to Student Services), as well as virtual drop-in advising, 30 minute advising appointments, and advising workshops and sessions. This service is especially helpful if you are going into your first year, are having troubles with your academics, or need help selecting courses.
This year, SFU Health and Counselling also established a COVID-19 support group, which connects students with the mental health team in order to alleviate some stressors and concerns. They also host events where students are able to meet others and focus on their wellbeing, which can be a great way to relax and learn some strategies to deal with stress and negative mental health during your time at SFU.
If you want to stay updated every day on things like events, deadlines, clubs, and more, follow Simon Fraser Student Society on instagram! They post helpful graphics that have dates for important activities, events, and deadlines for students! They also have a website where you’ll be able to see the latest updates on COVID-19, view clubs and student unions, and view dates on a calendar. There are also many ways you are able to become involved through elections or participate by voting! For more information about the SFSS and elections, click here.
As a final resource (though there are more to be found), there are the online forms available. Here, you will be able to download PDF form versions for program changes, refund appeals, health care provider statements, convocation assistance, financial aid, program appeal, and requesting a transcript. This is not an exhaustive list, which means there’s more! If you ever need to file a form for any reason, whether it be academic or personal, you should be able to locate it on the website above!
Lastly, although you shouldn’t always believe and follow what you read on different student-input forums such as Reddit, they are helpful when trying to get another student’s perspective on anything from a course to a resource. Many students have been through multiple years of studies and have sourced out some great things SFU has to offer! (I’ve seen everything from the best washrooms on campus to the best study spots!) Don’t be afraid to read through these and pick out what you think is important to look into; many students will have similar questions as you do!