Information for Incoming International Students

Flag waving crowd

Every year, Saint Mary's welcomes students from all over the world. It's an exciting time.

Winter Welcome marks the beginning of your life at Saint Mary's and is designed to help you meet new people, learn how to be a successful university student and of course to have fun. Winter Welcome will begin on Saturday, January 5 until Friday, January 18Click here for more detailed information and to register.

As part of Winter Welcome, The International Student Centre offers a variety of sessions, activities, and events specially designed to assist and help you with your adjustment to SMU and Halifax. We strongly recommend you to attend these sessions.   

International Student Sessions At-A-Glance - Click Here for the detailed schedule

January 5

Residence Move-In Date (scroll down for more info)

January 7

Service Expo

International Students Information Sessions

January 8

Service Expo

Shopping Trip

January 9

Shopping Trip

January 10

Shopping Trip

January 11

Get Your Social Insurance Number (SIN)

January 18

Get Your Social Insurance Number (SIN)

Get Your Nova Scotia ID Card

Nova Scotia Appreciation Night

How to Prepare for Your Arrival on Campus

1. Winter Welcome 2019:

Click here to register.

2. FREE Airport Pickup:

We offer a free airport pickup service for all our new incoming international students. Submit the Airport Pick-Up FormIn order to take advantage of this service, you must submit your complete airport pick-up request form at least 5 working days before you arrive in Halifax. Please note that the university will be closed for the Christmas Holidays from Thursday, December 20 until Tuesday, January 3, and therefore, if you are arriving in Halifax before Saturday, January 5, we must receive your complete online airport pickup request form by Tuesday, December 18.  

3. International Student Mentorship Program:

Would you like to make a friend at Saint Mary’s before you arrive in Halifax? The International Centre offers a mentorship program to help and support your transition to life at the university and Halifax helping you to make the adjustment to social and academic life at Saint Mary’s. The mentorship program offers you the opportunity to make friends, learn about other cultures, and creates a campus that is welcoming and inclusive. Complete the Mentorship Application Form and we will match you up with one of our mentors who will communicate with you by email. Don’t pass up this great opportunity to have a mentor and make a new friend!

4. Residence Move-In Date:

You will be able to move into your room as early as Saturday, January 5 anytime after 9 am.

If you are staying in residence, but arrive in Halifax before Saturday, January 5, you will need to find temporary accommodations. Click Here for information on hotels, inns and beds & breakfasts in the Halifax area. We strongly suggest that you make reservations before you arrive in Halifax.

If you are staying in Residence, but are arriving later than Tuesday, January 8, you MUST notify the Centre for Housing & Residence Life no later than Tuesday, January 8 or you may forfeit your $500 deposit and lose your room assignment.

If you are planning to stay in residence, please ensure that you have paid all the necessary deposits and that your space has been confirmed.  If you are unsure, please contact the Centre for Housing and Residence Life as soon as possible to find out about the status of your application. The Centre may be contacted at, telephone 902-420-5598, or fax 902-496-8107.

5. Registration for Courses

Click here for information on how to register for courses.

Each student accepted to Saint Mary's will be given a Banner Pin Number. Use your pin number to log onto the Banner Self-Service – click here for the Self-Service Page. Once you have logged into Banner Self-Service, you can modify your personal information, register for courses, add/drop courses and monitor your progress through courses.

Once you are here on campus, you can consult with the academic advisors for the Faculty in which you will study, i.e. either Arts, Business or Science.

6. Payment Options, Due Dates and Transferring Money to Saint Mary's

  • Interact Online payment Option Through Self Service Banner - "Preferred Method"
  • Online Banking or Telebanking
  • International Payments – Travelex
  • Bank Transfer
  • Cheque or Money Order
  • Paying in Person

Click here for more information on paying your school fees.

Please include your full name and Student ID when paying and transferring money. If you are paying residence fees, it is helpful to notify the Centre for Housing and Residence Life after the payment or transfer is made.

7. Saint Mary's University Student ID Card

To obtain your Student ID card go to the Information Desk in the Library. Learn about the documents needed to get your SMU Student ID card.

8. Opening a Bank Account in Halifax

You need to make an appointment at the bank and bring two pieces of a photo ID (e.g. passport, NS ID Card, Saint Mary's student ID card, etc) and proof of a local address.

We are here to help you. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact the International Centre or visit our office on campus.