Navigating University Centre can be difficult for students, especially during the first few weeks in September. For anyone who has ever tried to find a room on the main floor of University Centre, this is not news. Although most offices do have a room number, sometimes they are not clearly visible, and there appears to be no real sequence to the numbers. Even more confusing, sometimes two offices have the exact same room number. For example, if you’re looking for say, 105 University Centre, you might be looking for either the Manitoban office, or the Gallery of Student Art.
In the hopes of making things a little easier, the following is a list of activities that you will likely need to do in University Centre during the first few weeks in September, with directions for how to get there.
Get your student card: This is something that all new students need to do. If you are a keener, you will have already picked up your card back in August, when the line at the Registrar’s office (400 University Centre) was pretty short. If you were not among the group of early birds and you would like to pick up your card in a more convenient location, between September 8 and 11, you will also have the option to wait in line at Room 112 University Centre. To find Room 112, go past GPA’s (the convenience store), then the flower shop, and turn left at the pharmacy. Walk a few steps and turn right just after the bank machines. If you arrive at a “fork in the road,” between Engineering and Architecture, you have gone too far.
Get some cash: Although most businesses in University Centre now have debit machines, if you still need cash and are looking for an ATM, you are in luck. If you were planning on picking up your student card at 112 University Centre, you are especially in luck, since the ATMs are directly beside Room 112. For directions, see “Get your student card.”
Pay your tuition fees: Paying your fees is probably one of the most important things you need to do during the first week back. On the U of M’s Fort Garry campus, you can pay for your tuition fees at the cashier’s office, located at 138 University Centre. The cashier’s office is at the far end of University Centre, past the bookstore. Just before you get to the set of glass doors, turn right and get into what will likely be a massive line to pay your fees.
Get financial aid: In these times of economic uncertainty, just finding the money for university can be a challenge. For those who may need some help covering costs, financial aid is available. The financial aid office is located at 422 University Centre, a short jaunt from the registrar’s office. Although there is more than one way to get up to the fourth floor, the elevators are easiest. However finding the elevators can be a bit of a struggle. Tucked away behind the soup kiosk, students often miss them. To get to the elevators from the main floor East entrance, walk straight ahead, past the UMSU office and Answers, and then angle right, down a few steps, turning left as you pass the soup kiosk. Alternatively, you can turn right from the main floor East entrance, at the hair salon, and turn left at the insurance office. The elevators should be directly ahead of you. This second option may be more beneficial to a new student because along the way you will also pass the U of M’s dental and doctor’s office, as well as Student Advocacy.
Buy Textbooks: There are actually two places to buy your textbooks at the U of M. Archives Used Book Store is located in 107 Helen Glass. If you’ve just come from paying your tuition fees, simply go through the set of glass doors, turn right, and you are in Helen Glass. From there, conveniently located signs should be able to direct you. If the idea of navigating yet another building is too much for you, The U of M BookStore is conveniently located at 140 University Centre, just past the food court and across from the pharmacy.
Opt out of health & dental insurance: If you already have suitable health insurance and wish to opt out of the university’s plan, or if you are wanting to find out what the U of M’s insurance covers, you should be paying a visit to the Health & Dental office at 110 University Centre. Located directly across from the UMSU office, Health & Dental should be an easy find. As you walk in through the main floor East entrance, Health and Dental is directly on your right, just past the hair salon.
Buy a bus pass: Post-secondary monthly bus passes are quite a bit cheaper than adult monthly passes, but unfortunately they are only available on university campuses and you will need a valid student card to purchase one. At the U of M there are two places to get your monthly bus pass. The first option is to go to Answers, which is located between the UMSU office and GPA’s. The second option is to head down to UMSU Living, which sells post-secondary monthly bus passes from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. during the school year. UMSU Living is located at 108A University Centre right across from the food court, and more specifically, the soup kiosk. To get there from the main floor East entrance, walk past UMSU Health & Dental, turn right down a few steps once you see Tim Hortons, and it will be on your right-hand side.
Find a place to live: In addition to selling bus passes, UMSU Living helps students find off-campus housing. To get there from the main floor East entrance, walk past UMSU Health & Dental, turn right down a few steps once you see Tim Hortons, and it will be on your right-hand side.
Pay for a parking ticket/get a parking pass: For all of your parking and shuttle needs, the Manitoban recommends Parking and Shuttle Services. Up until this year, Parking and Shuttle Services was located on the main floor of University Centre. They have now moved to a bigger, better, and potentially less convenient location — 423 University Crescent, just past the Frank Kennedy Centre, on the opposite side of the street. Unfortunately, that is just too far to navigate from the main floor of University Centre. You probably didn’t need to pay that parking ticket anyway.
Check out your student newspaper: If you have a passion for writing and you are interested in contributing to the Manitoban, or if you just want to see what we are all about, you can find us at 105 University Centre, behind the Gallery of Student Art. If you are coming from the main floor entrance, walk straight ahead, past GPAs and the Gallery of Student Art and turn left when you see a pit full of couches. Tucked behind the gallery you’ll find us.