Whether you’re coming for your first year or about to graduate, there are some telltale signs of when somebody is clearly not from UVIC. Hopefully, none of the points mentioned below relate to you, or else you better get studying those UVIC quirks.
#1 Lost in the Halls of Clearihue and Cornett
At least 90% of students at UVIC have had a class in either Clearihue or Cornett at one point during their studies. In fact, a majority of first year classes are conducted in these two buildings. Nevertheless, it stands to say that the layout of Clearihue is confusing. Classroom number plates aren’t very well displayed. The cramped nature of the halls during peak hours makes it even more stressful to navigate. Cornett suffers the same issues of simplicity and accessibility. For starters, Cornett’s architecture is loosely based on the human brain (because the building houses the faculty of psychology), meaning that hallways intertwine in weird ways, and classrooms in and around each other make life difficult for students in a rush. So, suppose you see students or other folks visibly confused or looking hopeless while navigating these halls. In that case, it’s a guaranteed sign that they’re not from UVIC.
#2 Hesitating Before Crossing Ring Road
When it comes to pedestrian courtesy in Victoria, the pedestrian has the right of way more often than not. The same goes for students crossing ring road or any other road around UVIC; students who have gotten used to the routine or otherwise do not hesitate to cross ring road and often walk without looking to the right (because Ring Road is a one-way road). As such, you can tell when someone’s not from UVIC when they hesitate before walking across ring road or when they look both ways before crossing. Regardless, Ring Road is quite safe with a maximum of 40km/h. Students usually have nothing to fear when it comes to watching out for vehicles.
#3 Different Expectations for the Weather
Victoria being a temperate city, us islanders and even those from the lower mainland are used to mild winter, wet autumns and pleasant summers. When summer makes way for autumn around later October, Victoria turns from a beautiful city to a grey and gloomy one with rainy days on end. When the rain comes, you can truly see who the locals or regulars versus the newer attendees are. People panicking or showing worry about the rain usually stand out amongst the rest and are usually the least prepared, as most expected static weather. Victoria’s weather is unpredictable, and those who have been here long enough have accepted their fate, usually wearing all kinds of clothes for all outcomes of how the day will turn out. However, newcomers coming from snowier or colder climates will be shocked to see how bad locals are with driving, walking, navigating through the snow. Locals here get easily excited at the sign of 10cm of snow. The university will easily shut the campus down if the snow accumulates over 40cm. Thus, if you see students that are unphased or have no reaction to the first snowfall of Victoria, it means that there’s a high chance they’re not from here
#4 Fashion Choices at UVIC
UVIC has an unspoken monoculture regarding fashion and clothing, and it’s clear as day when you attend the fall semester. At Least 80% of students at UVIC own either Blundstones, Birkenstocks or both as part of their essential wardrobe. They can also be seen wearing athleisure or look like they’re about to go on a 3-day hike on a remote island. Anyone asking why so many students stick to this type of outfit is a good indicator that they’re not from the province of Victoria.
Bonus: Referring Calling it the “Jamie Cassels Centre”
This one is more specific to those who have attended or have been in UVIC before the name change of the University Centre to the Jamie Cassels Centre 2020. It also makes the difference between those who’ve attended UVIC before COVID, the mess at the beginning, zoom university, the struggles of online university, etc. Thus, when someone refers to the Jamie Cassels Centre by its old name, then you know they’ve been there through it all