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Improving Services
for NIC Students

Equitable Access to Extended Health Coverage

North Island Students’ Union (NISU) is calling a referendum to seek student opinion about a proposed update to the extended health and dental plan definition of full time studies. A referendum is when the members of an electorate body, in this case the members of NISU (all credit earning NIC students), are asked to vote for a proposed service level or policy change. The NISU Board of Directors, fellow students, have voted to bring this forward for consideration. Having extended health and dental coverage helps students live their best lives, focusing on studies, and for many is the first time they can access much needed services, such as dental care, vision coverage, physiotherapy, counselling and more.

The plan is mandatorily applied to all full time students. Those with equivalent coverage may opt out of this coverage


The current definition of full time is; 9 or more credits or 6 months or longer trades/vocational training. Most often, one course is three credits, creating full time at 3 or more courses.


With the rising costs of education, many students are working while learning, and may be raising families or caring for elders, 6 credits or two courses, may be the maximum they can succeed at, while living whole lives.

Students who access the Department of Accessible Learning Services (DALS) do so for a variety of reasons. Students who receive support from DALS are considered full time at 6 credits, based on federal guidelines. These students must self declare to the Students’ Union, access a form, seek confirmation from staff of DALS, return to the Students’ Union, have the fee applied to their NIC student record and then be added to the plan. This process puts un-needed barriers in front of our members who traditionally already face barriers accessing post secondary and supports.


NISU is able to provide extended health and dental coverage by pooling funds and resources with other student associations around BC, through membership with the British Columbia Federation of Students, as part of the Health Care Consortium.


Several other students’ associations in the Consortium have already engaged with their membership, seeking the opinion of the definition of full time, and have moved to the consideration of full time studies of six or more credits for all learners. NISU loves chopping down barriers, we hope you do, too.

Image by Element5 Digital

Are you in favour of updating the definition of full time studies to
6 credits or equivalent?

health and dental plam.webp

Health and Dental Plan Fast Facts

Eligible for students whose studies begin in September or January. Not available for May or summer start classes. Those with equivalent coverage may opt out of this coverage.


  • Costs $275 for 12 months of coverage, works out to less than $23 per month

  • Students can add a spouse, common-law or otherwise, for same price, $275

  • Students can add family, 3 or more for $480

  • 80% coverage for basic dental services, maximum of $700 per benefit year

  • 80% coverage for pharmaceutical coverage, maximum of $2000 per benefit year

  • $50 per appointment, for 6 appointments of each physiotherapy, massage therapy (with prescription), chiropractic care, acupuncture, naturopath and more.

  • $75 per appointment, for over 7 appointments of mental health supports with a counsellor, social worker or psychologist

  • Vision coverage, $225 every two years of coverage, ($100 for eye exams and $125 for prescription glasses, contacts, etc.)

  • Travel insurance for up to 90 days

  • Access to a tutor, should the student become ill or injured while studying

  • Comprehensive life & accident insurance.

To learn more about the plan, visit or scan QR code

All NISU members are eligible voters, including digital learners
and students based at all NIC campuses.

Voting will be available though digital means so wherever you are, your vote will be counted.

Participating in this referendum is a way that you can support other students to access affordable extended health and dental coverage.

Ballots will be delivered to student email addresses, with instructions, September 20,
with voting open until September 22.

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