University of Victoria Grad Student Society

Gearing up for a busy week? Don't forget to stop into our office to buy your tickets for the Trampoline Park event…
Nov 19, 2017 @ 9:00am

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What does the Graduate Students' Society do for distance students?


Extended Health & Dental Insurance

Distance students are not automatically charged for GSS Extended health and dental insurance, but full-time distance students living in Canada may choose to join the plan. Students who opt in may also add their family to the plan for an additional fee.

Opting in to the plan must be done by September 30, and renewed annually, unless the studrent is not enrolled at UVIC in the Fall term that school year, in which case they can opt in January 1- 31.

Handbook & Weekly Planner

The GSS publishes a handbook & weekly planner every year. The planner provides information of interest to graduate students about the GSS and UVIC.

Distance students can request a free copy be mailed to them at

Bus pass opt in

Distance students are not charged for the U-pass discounted bus pass program, but those who live in town can join the plan through the GSS office within the first month of each semester.


The Ombudsperson offers confidential advice on UVIC policies, and support resolving problems.

Constituency groups

Graduate students are members of the constituency groups hosted in through the UVSS. Services include advocacy support from the Pride collective, Students of Colour Collective, Society for Students with a Disability, the Native Students Union, the Women's Centre and the Anti-Violence Project.


GSS Department grants fund graduate student organized academic and social events in departments. Distance programs are eligible to apply for these funds. Distance programs have used them for socials during residency, or speakers hosted on video conference.

The GSS Distance student travel grant is funded by the GSS and administered by the Faculty of Graduate Studies. The purpose of this grant is to help alleviate the cost of travel for on-campus cohort classes in distance programs. For more information and application forms, click here and scroll down.

Travel grants for attending conferences are jointly funded by the GSS and the Faculty of Graduate Studies, and help defray cost of attending conferences. Apply early through the Faculty of Graduate Studies.

For the GSS Childcare and grad student bursary, apply through UVIC Student Financial Aid.

Information & referrals

The GSS office staff and elected Executive Board members are all current or past graduate students. We understand graduate student issues, graduate student perspectives, and the way UVIC works.

Our office provides referrals to relevant campus and community services. We can also help advocate on issues affecting a group of students or students in a department, or clarify UVIC policies and procedures.

Representation on campus

The Director of Student Affairs is responsible for distance student interests, and can bring concerns from distance students to meetings with UVIC’s senior administration.

Each department  elects a “grad rep” to the GSS Graduate Representative Council, which sets the GSS direction, and brings concerns  and information from the department forward.

The GSS Executive Board is elected (in an online ballot) by the whole grad student body, and meets regularly with the university senior administration and ensures graduate student concerns stay in the forefront.

During your campus residency

When on campus, book the Halpern Centre meeting rooms for a study group or student meeting. Contact to book. Beautiful setting, wifi, electrical outlets. Free for grad student study, groups and meetings.

Meet other grad students at Wednesday coffee, 9am in our Grad House Restaurant. The Grad House restaurant features healthy local food (and local craft beer) at student prices. The Grad House is family friendly.