Here at Blanche Macdonald you’re part of the Family even before your first day. We want to make sure you’re taken care of while you’re here, and fully equipped with all the resources you need to be successful. That’s why we’ve compiled everything we think you should know about studying with us and living in Vancouver into this Student Resources guide.
This is your one-stop-shop for information on moving, living and studying here in Vancouver, including housing and accommodations, transportation, career planning, staying safe, medical care, Frequently Asked Questions and much more.
Have a question that isn’t addressed here? Contact your Admissions Director. We’re here to help!
Vancouver is one of the most beautiful cities in the world. Known as the Jewel of the Pacific Rim, it a vivid and vibrant multicultural hub that boasts international sophistication, rich cultural resources and breathtaking scenery. Vancouver’s natural splendour, set against the spectacular landscape of snow-capped mountains, primitive rainforests, and the Pacific Ocean, will dazzle and engage you.
So will the people you meet. Vancouver is a safe, friendly city, where cultures and cuisines exchange ideas and influences. It is a city brimming with cultural events, world class shopping, gourmet restaurants with an endless array of International cuisines, and a vibrant nightlife. Its temperate climate, with mild winters unlike the rest of Canada, ensures its streets and cafes are always bustling.
With miles of pristine public walkways, beautiful beaches that hug the coastline, and numerous bike paths and hiking trails, Vancouver’s outdoor activities are endless. Hundreds of movie and television productions have been filmed in and around Vancouver. The city has a well-deserved reputation as Hollywood North, with local film production revenues exceeding over a billion dollars annually. After even a brief visit to Vancouver, you’ll understand why the entertainment industry can’t stay away.
Vancouver is a wonderful place to visit. It’s an even better place to live.
Vancouver is an arts and culture hub. From Industry Trade Shows and International Festivals and Vancouver Fashion Week, there is always a festival, event week, restaurant opening, concert, convention or cultural happening taking place. Keep track of all that this bustling and vibrant city has to offer with our favourite guides to getting the most out of Vancouver’s cultural life.
We do all that we can to help our students find accommodations during their stay in Vancouver. Read more information in our Housing section.
Blanche Macdonald is a globally renowned College for the creative and applied arts. We are an accepting and inclusive safe space for anyone who wants to learn. We encourage each student to apply themselves to their studies while developing as professionals on their journey to becoming their best selves. We’re here to help in any and every way we can.
In addition to offering world-class training, we also provide lifetime support and advice to set you up for success at any stage in your career.
Blanche Macdonald has three campuses across Central Vancouver.
Our City Square Campus is home to our Makeup, Nails and Esthetics departments. This is also where our Esthetic and Nail student services take place. It is only a short bus ride away from our other two campuses on Robson Street.
Our Robson Campus in downtown Vancouver is where most of our Global Fashion Marketing classes take place, as well as all of our Fashion Design and Pro Hair classes. Hair services booked on Sundays or Mondays take place at this campus.
Our Atelier Campus, located on Robson Street in downtown Vancouver, is the second home of our Fashion and Makeup departments. This is also where our Q&A Student Salon and CurliQue Beauty, our in-house retail boutique, are located.
Q&A is our student salon run by our own Pro Hair students and supervised by our Pro Hair instructors. Students in other programs are eligible for free haircuts and 50% off colour services. Q&A is open Tuesday through to Saturday.
CurliQue Beauty Boutique offers students 20% off everything (excluding The Ordinary) on class days at Atelier and 20% off MAKE UP FOR EVER products for the duration of your program on class days at Atelier. On days when you have classes at another campus, and after you graduate, you can get 15% off the entire store (excluding The Ordinary).
If you are taking our Makeup, Nails, Esthetics, or Pro Hair course, your Kit is already stocked with to-of-the-line products, tools, and essentially everything you’ll need. But you may need to replenish items, or decide to supplement your kit with personal product choices. If you are taking our Fashion Marketing or Design courses, we have most of the supplies you’ll need to get started on your first day, but as you go through the program, you may find that there are a few things you’d like to pick up for yourself.
We’ve compiled a fairly thorough, though by no means exhaustive, list of places to start at if you’re looking to stock up on your creative necessities.
CurliQue Beauty Boutique
CurliQue Beauty Boutique
West Coast Beauty
CurliQue Beauty Boutique
West Coast Beauty
All three of our campuses are conveniently located in Central Vancouver. Everything you need – from restaurants and cafes to grocery stores, pharmacies, libraries, community centres, health and leisure facilities and transit stations – is only a short distance away. All of our locations are easily accessible by bus and train lines, and are approximately 45 minutes from the Vancouver Airport.
Parking at our City Square campus can be found in the paid underground parkade as well as surrounding paid lots and side streets. This campus can also be accessed by buses 9, 17, 50 and the 99-B line, as well as the Canada Line on the Skytrain.
Parking at our Robson and Atelier campuses can be found at various paid lots and meters around the downtown core. These campuses are accessible by a variety of bus lines, as well as the Canada Line and the Expo Line on the Skytrain.
All of our campuses are fully equipped for maximum accessibility.
The Blanche Macdonald Centre is committed to assisting our students during their school-to-work transition. All of our Diploma Programs include extensive business coaching, professional skills building, resumé preparation, and career search components in which students learn how to market themselves as Makeup Artists, Fashion Designers, Stylists, Estheticians, Nail Technicians, Hair Stylists and much more. You will learn everything from the essential art of networking to interview skills and how to write and maintain a specialized CV (curriculum vitae) as you develop the confidence to put your best self forward.
Each department has a dedicated Career Services Team or Director that will meet with you throughout your Program to get a feel of who you are, what you enjoy, and where you see yourself in the industry. You are also welcome to set up a meeting with them at any point before or after graduation. Whether it’s a week or 5 years after you graduate, we are here to help you find exactly where you should be! Our Career Service Directors are all industry professionals who provide students and graduates with ongoing resources and support to assist them in launching careers in their chosen field.
Makeup – Heather Sosa and Jennifer Brown
Contact them at email@example.com or firstname.lastname@example.org
Fashion – Mel Watts
Contact her at email@example.com
Esthetics/Spa Therapy & Nails – Simona Gozner
Contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org
Hair – Phil Loiselle
Contact him at email@example.com
All students at Blanche Macdonald must have BC medical coverage or health insurance.
The BC Medical Services Plan (MSP) is the basic form of medical insurance. MSP hospitalization and most physicians’ services and referrals. It does not cover prescription medication, eyeglasses, and dental care. We strongly recommend applying for the Medical Services Plan (MSP) as soon as you arrive in Vancouver. If you do not have insurance, it will be your responsibility to pay the entire cost of all medical attention you receive.
The MSP is available to all BC Residents for a monthly fee. It is also available to out of province or International Students that have a valid Study Permit issued for six or more months. New residents who are applying for MSP will be subject to a 90 day waiting period.
If you are not already a BC resident, or if you are not already covered by MSP, it is strongly recommended to apply as soon as you arrive in Vancouver.
Applying for the Medical Services Plan (MSP)
Find out how to apply online or download an application form on the BC Government website here.
To learn more about MSP, please visit the MSP info page on the Government of British Columbia website here.
You will receive a British Columbia Care Card in the mail when you register with MSP. There will be a registration number embossed on the Care Card which is used to determine the status of your insurance.
Your Care Card will have the same expiry date as your Study Permit. Each time you receive a new Study permit, you will need to extend your MSP coverage. If you do not pay your monthly fee, you do not have insurance. It is important to carry your Care Card at all times as it must be presented to health care officials at the time that you are receiving care.
For further information visit the BC Care Card website here.
Your safety is of utmost importance to us. At Blanche Macdonald we are fully committed to creating safe, inclusive spaces. Vancouver is generally safe, but like any city, it is important to be aware of your surroundings and remain vigilant.
The Vancouver Police Department has a wide range of tips for staying safe:
Social Networking and Internet Safety
Earthquake Awareness Tips
Click here to download Safety Tips for students provided from the Vancouver Police Department.
If you identify as a member of the LGBTQ+ Community, there are a number of resources, facilities and community organizations to help make you feel at home:
Please contact our Admissions Directors at our City Square Campus at 604-685-0347, our Robson Campus at 604-685-0337, our Atelier Campus at 604-685-5560 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. We will be happy to answer your questions.
IMPORTANT DISCLAIMER: The information provided is for general information and is subject to change without notice. Every effort has been made to provide accurate and complete information however Pacifique Riche Enterprises Ltd. (doing business as Blanche Macdonald Centre (BMC) makes no warranty or representation as to the accuracy of the information provided. Some of the information provided may have been provided by independent third parties and should not be assumed to be approved or endorsed by BMC. BMC expressly disclaims all and any liability to anyone who acts in reliance on the information provided, whether the direct recipient of such information or not. Before acting in reliance on any information provided, you are strongly advised to contact BMC or such other person, organization or legal entity as you consider necessary or advisable to confirm that any information you are relying upon is current and accurate. BMC will not be responsible for any loss or damage arising to you as a result of any actions taken by you in reliance on the information contained herein or for any errors or omissions.