International Student Supports


Welcome to Mount Royal University

Visit the International Student Support Centre (ISSC) on campus in room E 140!



Congratulations! You've been conditionally accepted to Mount Royal and now it's time to take the next steps so you're ready for your studies here. Visit our checklist that outlines everything you need to know before you arrive and what to do once you get here.

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Feeling connected to the Mount Royal community is just as important as your academics. The International Student Support Centre (ISSC) at MRU provides a vibrant space for students from all backgrounds to meet other MRU students as well as students studying on exchange. Staffed by student leaders and volunteers, the ISSC provides information, support and peer-driven programs that connect international and Canadian students. The ISSC team plans and creates opportunities for students to participate in fun and engaging social and cultural activities, and provides a space for students to gather to practice language, study, meet new people, and learn from each other.

Please drop by the ISSC for a visit (E140):

  • September - April
  • Monday - Thursday; 10am - 4pm
Join our Facebook page to learn more about upcoming activities. 






Alongside the International Student Support Centre, the department of International Education offers many programs for international students. These programs aim to support students by building community, forming connections, celebrating cultures, and building on student success. Supports include wellness, celebrating cultures through food and sharing, language programs, internationalization initiatives, tours and field trips. Some of the programs we have offered include:

Global Wellness Community

Meet new people and learn from and support each other as we chat about the experience of being an international student. The discussion is lead by an MRU Counsellor.

International Kitchen

Let's cook together! Food and ingredients provided. Student hosts from around the world lead us in preparing meals from their culture each month. Hosted in conjunction with Residence Services and Healthy Campus.

International Eat & Greet

Monthly free lunch in SAMRU! Meet a global community on campus. Hosted by Cultural and Indigenous Inclusion, SAMRU.

Language Partners Program

Are you interested in learning another language? Do you know a language you could teach to another student? Find out about this peer-to-peer program.


Field Trips 

Join us on a field trip to see the Rocky Mountains, including Banff townsite and the iconic Lake Louise. We also go on local trips that include tours of downtown Calgary.

International Education Week 

International Education Week (IEW) showcases the impact that international education has in preparing students for the world and supports international engagement efforts. Every year, the Office of International Education hosts a celebration of our international campus community and showcase the diverse backgrounds of our staff, faculty and students! 

For more information on our programs and upcoming events, email Kristen Chappell, International Student Support Coordinator or visit our Facebook page.






The following links will connect you with the Immigration, Refugees and Citizen Canada website. 

Immigration and permits

Study Permit vs. Entry Documents (Visas)

International students arriving in Canada to study for more than six months need two important immigration documents:

  1. A study permit – acts as your permission to study in Canada. It is a status document, defining you as an International student and allowing you to remain in Canada for more than six months
  2. Entry document - allows entry into Canada. Depending on citizenship, International students need either a:
    • Temporary Resident Visa (TRV) OR
    • Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA) 
      Note: American (US) citizens or permanent residents do not need either.

Please check here to decide which one you need. If students study in Canada for less than six months they do not need a study permit and are allowed to enter Canada with just a TRV or eTA depending on their nationality.

Study Permit Extensions
Study permits, work permits and visitor records are status documents that do not authorize the holder to re-enter Canada. A TRV or an eTA are necessary for re-entry into Canada.

It is highly recommended to apply online. Start the application process up to three months before your study permit expiry date. Do not apply earlier than three months as it may lead to the refusal of your application.

  1. Login or create GCKey account. Write down your username, password and your security questions and keep them safely.
  2. Answer the questions and follow the instructions
  3. Fill out the application form and upload required documents. You do not have to sign the electronic form; include the date and validate it. Please make sure that your documents are of good quality and the file does not exceed 4KB. (Special validation encoding makes it tricky to open this PDF, and it must be saved first before opening. This link will explain how to open the application).
  4. Pay the fee and submit your application.
  5. Monitor your account for notifications from IRCC.

You will need the following supporting documents among others that will be outlined in your document checklist:

  • UCI (Unique Client Identifier) - the 8 or 10 digit number (xxxx-xxxx or xx-xxxx-xxxx) on your Study Permit. Omit the dash in between the digits when entering onto your application 
  • MRU Designated Learning Institution (DLI) number (O18761482032 ) starts with the Letter “O” not the number “zero”.
  • Study Permit Extension Letter/Confirmation of Enrolment (request this from MRU's Student Records department via email This could take up to 10 days to process. 
  • Official Transcript. Scan both the Study Permit Extension Letter/Confirmation of Enrolment and the Transcript in one pdf file.

For questions about study permits and immigration, email us at

Working in Canada 

Your study permit will say whether you are allowed to work or not. Often you are allowed to work on campus for unlimited hours. 

If your study permit gives you permission to work off-campus, you can work up to 20 hours per week during the regular academic session and full-time during scheduled breaks.

At MRU, regular academic session is considered to include fall and winter semesters. Spring/summer semesters are considered regularly scheduled breaks.

Here are some helpful links regarding working as an international student in Canada:

Contract Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada contact options

Contact the IRCC client support centre

The information on this page may change. The immigration information on this page has been reviewed and endorsed by Regulated Canadian Immigration Consultants (RCICs) or Regulated International Student Immigration Advisors (RISIAs) in compliance with the Immigration and Refugee Protection Act and Regulations. However, this is not a legal document and information may change without notice. Always refer to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) for the most up-to-date information. 



What makes up a program?

Programs are made up of several components including your major, General Education and electives. Learn what makes up a program and how courses are structured. 

Early Support

If at any point during the semester you feel like you are falling behind, refer yourself to Early Support. Early Support helps ensure that small issues don't turn into big problems and can direct you to the many resources available to you. You can also be referred by a staff or faculty member.

Riddell Library and Learning Centre

The Riddell Library and Learning Centre offers a variety of computer workstations, seating, and spaces to support your academic goals. Stretch your legs on a treadmill desk or get focused in a private study pod. Group and Presentation Practice Rooms are available for students to book online for collaboration with peers. Specialized spaces such as the Maker Studio and Experience Lab (VR/AR/MR) are open to students during drop-in hours and offer workshops, equipment, and in-room experts to assist with personal or scholarly projects. Librarians are a great resource to help you find sources you need for coursework and research papers. Students can book a personalized research consultation with Subject Librarians online or stop by the consultation table at the Service Desk.

There is a printing room located on every floor of the library. In order to print at MRU locations, you must add money to your PCounter account.

Access and Inclusion Services

If you experience a disability-related barrier, require academic accommodations, and have documentation of a disability, register with Access and Inclusion Services and fill out the Public Request Form to get started.


Student Learning Services (SLS)

Student Learning Services provides tools to help you have a successful academic experience and develop your skills through workshops, a peer learning program and many other resources. 

Academic Advising

Our academic advisors are available to help you with course selection, program planning, and educational goal setting. Many programs have faculty advisors and our central office is available to help all students looking to change programs at Mount Royal. Find the advisor for your program. 

Mount Royal Essential Apps

MRU utilizes several apps to support you in your journey as a student. Visit the Essential Apps page for info on these online supports.


Social Insurance Number

A Social Insurance Number (SIN) is a 9-digit number that you need to work and be paid in Canada and access government programs and benefits. It is also used to file taxes. You must apply for a SIN if you plan to work in Canada. If you are an international student, be sure you understand the eligibility requirements to work in Canada. 

Find out what information you need before you apply for your SIN. 

How to apply: Bring any one of the following documents to apply:

  • a study permit that states you “may accept employment” or “may work” in Canada, OR
  • a study permit and a “confirmation to work off campus” letter issued by IRCC prior to February 6, 2015, OR
  • a work permit (e.g. co-op, post-graduation, or spouse/partner work permit)

The closest Service Canada Centre to MRU is:

  • Harry Hayes Building, Suite 150, 220 4th Avenue Southeast, Calgary

Individual Tax Number and Alberta ID

If you are an international student not eligible for a SIN, you need to get an Individual Tax Number (TN) if you received a scholarship or award, or you want to file a Canadian tax return.

The application should be completed by paper and is free. Mail the completed application to the Canadian Revenue Agency’s International Tax Office.

Make sure to update your MyMRU account with your SIN or ITN so that the school can issue you the proper tax documentation.

Alberta ID – If you do not hold an Alberta Driver’s License, you can apply for an Alberta ID in order to get a photo identification card. 


Taxes and International Students

As a student at MRU you are subject to the taxation laws of Canada and the Province of Alberta.

Whether you have to file a Canadian tax return and the type of income you must report depends on your residency status in Canada. It is your responsibility to assess your own tax obligations every year.

To get assistance with completing your tax return, SAMRU offers a free tax clinic run by CRA-trained volunteers in the month of March.

See Students and Income Tax for complete information, including details on tax credits such GST and Child Tax Credit.

Scholarships and Bursaries for International Students

Internal Awards
International students are eligible for MRU scholarships unless the eligibility of an individual award specifies otherwise. International students are not normally eligible for bursaries, unless the eligibility specifies otherwise.  More information on awards can be found on the scholarship and bursary site.

Students' Association of Mount Royal University
SAMRU provides approximately $40,000 in awards and bursaries, and $50,000 through our Experiential Learning Fund to our student members.

Financial Aid

If you have sudden, unexpected financial difficulties while you are studying, you may want to inquire about emergency funding from the following programs: 

  • SAMRU emergency bursary - visit the Peer Support Centre in Wyckham House (Z210).
  • Student Awards & Financial Aid emergency bursaries - visit  Student Awards at the Registrar's Office windows (A101).


The Cougars Campus Store is your one-stop-shop for everything you need to get ready for school. Pick up your course supplies and textbooks. Find a new sweatshirt to show your Mount Royal pride. And find services including OneCard, Printing and Parking.


Your OneCard is your official student ID card and gives you access to the Library, Recreation, computer and science labs and printing on campus. You can pick up your campus card from the Cougars Campus Store located in H100 on Main Street.

Make sure you bring one piece of government-issued identification (i.e. driver's license, provincial identification, or passport) or two pieces of non-photo identification (i.e. birth certificate, social insurance number, credit card, health care card, etc.)

The OneCard will also allow you to pay for food and drinks at University Food Services (excluding Wyckham House).


If you are a full-time credit student, you will receive a U-Pass as part of your student fees. The U-Pass is a validation sticker applied to your OneCard that gives you full unlimited access to Calgary Transit services during the semester. You can pick up your U-Pass at the Cougars Campus Store located in H100 on Main Street.


Rent a locker instead of carrying around your textbooks all day. Bike storage is also available. 


Find the textbooks you need by using the online search. 

Digital Printing

Printing on campus is easy. The Digital Print Centre provides large format printing, bindery, cutting and sustainable printing options.


If you intend to park on campus, parking permits are in high demand and available for purchase online. Day lots and visitor parking lots are also available on a pay per use basis; check out the parking map for directions.


Campus Life

University life has both study time and time to explore. Sure, you’ll work hard, but university is more than books and exams. Show your Mount Royal pride at a Cougars games, join a club, and attend unique events all on campus. From New Student Orientation to the Crowchild Classic and arts performances, you’ll find meaningful experiences that will define the next chapter of your #MRULife.



Students' Association of Mount Royal University (SAMRU)

The Students’ Association (SAMRU) represents students, provides support services, and advocates to improve the quality of life for our members, the students of Mount Royal University. SAMRU is a charitable organization that owns and operates the Wyckham House student centre, providing over 90 programs and services, including clubs, social opportunities, peer support, free workshops, and other student-focused services. Some of the many student support services include Cultural and Indigenous Inclusion Programming and Peer Support Centre. The Peer Support Center provides peer-led services to support students ranging from financial supports, free breakfasts or a friendly ear to chat with.


Keep up to date with all activities and events through the SAMRU Event Calendar and the Mount Royal University Event Calendar. You should have already added the critical dates calendar to your Google Calendar by clicking the “+” button at the bottom of the image.



Find your kind and get involved with a club or society! Clubs can be academic, social, representational or cultural. The Students’ Association has over 75 clubs that meet throughout the year and host social events, fundraisers, celebrations and more. Join a club to explore your interest in photography, board games, ski & snowboarding, Japanese conversation and everything in between, while developing valuable friendships and leadership skills. There is even an International Student Club that would be a great choice to join!


Few things feel better than celebrating as a team. Get active by joining an intramural sports team. You can sign up as a team or as a free agent with any skill level. Intramurals are a great way to connect with new people while having fun.

Chaplains/Prayer spaces 

MRU has a team of volunteer chaplains representing a variety of faith traditions to help students throughout their university journey. The Meditation Centre (W201) is a separate space, available for you to use for prayer, reflection and meditation. This safe and inclusive space is open to all students. Friday Prayers are held on campus along with the use of Ablution stations.







  • International students and their dependents can apply for insurance with the Alberta Health Care Insurance Plan (AHCIP) if they plan to remain in Alberta for 12 months or more.
  • They should apply for AHCIP within 90 days of arrival in Alberta. 


Wellness Services

Wellness Services provides services and initiatives to support mental, physical, and sexual health. We have doctors, mental health nurses, and a psychiatrist on campus along with physiotherapists, chiropractors, and many other practitioners to support your well-being. Student Counselling Services, Campus Well, and Peer to Peer Mental Health Educators are some of the many services and initiatives Wellness Services has to support your mental health.

Student Counselling

We know university can be an exciting, yet stressful time for students. Homesickness, feeling anxious, and relationship changes are a few examples that can lead us to feel down and discouraged. Student Counselling provides individual counselling and workshops to support you during your Mount Royal University experience.


Whether you crave activity to maintain a healthy and balanced lifestyle or use it to reduce exam stress and blow off some steam, Recreation has what you are looking for. Explore all your options including a fitness centre, running track, fitness classes, rock climbing wall, aquatic centre and squash courts to help keep you active.


Everyone in the Mount Royal community is part of the Cougars. Belonging to #Cougnation is to be connected to a tight-knit family of people who learn, work and play hard. Attend a Cougars’ basketball, hockey, soccer or volleyball game to support our talented athletes and wear our colours with pride.


The Wyckham Pharmacy has a professional pharmacist on staff that will work with your benefits to save you money at the till. The pharmacy offers prescription transferring services, medication and vaccination injections, flu shots, travel consults and more!

Health and Dental plan

If you are taking nine credits or more at Mount Royal University you are automatically enrolled in the Student Health and Dental Plans. If you have comparable coverage elsewhere, you can opt-out. For more information, visit the Mount Royal portal or visit the Student Benefits Plan Office (Z001, Wyckham House).



Career Services

Career Services at Mount Royal provides opportunities for students to clarify, experience and achieve their career / employment goals. Get a competitive edge for your career by accessing the many resources Careeer Services has to offer:

  • Job bank - Access online job postings for full-time, part-time, summer, contract and/or graduate level positions, posted by local and national employers. 
  • Resume critiques - receive feedback on your resume that will help you to develop a strong application when job searching. 
  • One-on-one appointmentsbook an appointment at Career Services to explore your skills and identify career paths. Our career professionals will also support you in preparing for interviews and developing job search strategies.
  • Career and Employment workshopsAttend free workshops and learn new tips, strategies and skills for career and employment success. Workshop topics include:
    • Effective Resumes and Cover Letters
    • Career Planning Strategies
    • Job Search Techniques, Networking and Career Fairs

Leadership opportunities on campus

Are you interested in becoming a student leader on campus? Find information on leadership models, resources to aide you in your journey, leadership opportunities on campus, and information on MRU's annual leadership conference.

Find and apply to volunteer and leadership jobs on campus.

On campus student jobs

There are student employment opportunities available to you at Mount Royal. The Cougars Campus Store, Residence and even the Child Care center employ students. The Students’ Association also has positions for students available. You can explore more here


Residence Services is dedicated to making every resident feel at home when they're away from home. Our units are fully equipped. All you'll need to bring are personal items, linens, food and cleaning supplies.

Wired and wireless Internet, cable (in living rooms), water, heat and electricity are all conveniently included in Residence fees. We also offer free on-site technical support for any issues that may arise with the Internet.

Residence is made up of two complexes: East Residence consists of townhouses and West Residence is a combination of apartments and townhouses. You can walk anywhere on campus within 10 minutes from East and West Residences.

Life in res photos
Outside residence



Off campus housing 

Before your arrival in Calgary, Alberta, it's crucial to secure accomodation to ensure a smooth transition. With the start of the semester being a busy time both on campus and throughout the city, it is advisable to make these arrangements well in advanced. Consider options such as renting, or living with friends or family. 

Tips from MRU

1) Meeting the landlord and potential roommates face-to-face can provide valuable insights before committing to a property.

2) Trust your instincts throughout your housing search. If something feels off - such as landlords only communicating via email, reluctance to allow property viewings before payment, or offers that seem too good to be true. It's important to proceed with caution. 

3) Understanding your commute to campus is essential. Determine wether you can walk or if you'll need to use public transportation. Being informed about your commute will contribute to a well rounded housing decision. 

For more information on off campus housing please contact



Campus Services: Security 

MRU is considered a safe environment. There are many safety features in place:

  • Emergency phones are located throughout campus and connect directly to Security Services
  • City of Calgary Emergency Services: 911 (dial 9 first if calling from a campus landline)
  • Security Services is located at West Gate Entrance (X200)
  • Security non-emergency phone number: 403.440.6897
  • Security Services 24 hour emergency line: 403.440.5900
  • Safewalk program
MRU Now app
Download the app on your mobile device to receive real-time notifications about campus emergencies, report safety concerns, connect to Wellness resources, request Safe Walk, and more!