Research Associates Onboarding

Resources to get started at the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology as a Research Associate

Work Permit

Foreign Research Associates are required to apply to Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) for a Work Permit in Canada. The Immigration Process for Foreign RAs on the Faculty Relations website outlines the steps involved in obtaining a temporary work permit and Social Insurance Number (SIN). It also provides information on what is expected after arriving at UBC.

Please visit the Faculty Relations website for complete information on topics such as:

  • Work Permit
  • Temporary Resident Visa (TRV)
  • Electronic Travel Authorization (eTA)
  • Where and how to apply for your visa/permit
  • Permit for accompanying dependents
  • Implied Status and how it affects MSP coverage

Before entering Canada, please ensure to read and sign Resource for Self Isolation Resource Packages.

Social Insurance Number (SIN)

The Social Insurance Number (SIN) is a nine-digit number that you need to work in Canada or to have access to government programs and benefits. All employees are required by Service Canada to present their SIN card to their employer within three days of starting work.

For more information about obtaining a Social Insurance Number, visit the Service Canada website.

Health Care

B.C's Medical Services Plan is mandatory for all B.C. residents.

For information about MSP and how to enroll: BC Medical Services Plan

*New (and returning) residents are required to complete a wait period consisting of the balance of the month in which residence in British Columbia is established, plus two months before benefits can begin. Please find more details: Coverage Wait Period

Find a physician for you and your family: College of Physicians and Surgeons of BC

Find a dentist in your area: BC Dental Association

Hospitals in Vancouver and the Lower mainland

Taxation in Canada/BC - Income Tax

While at UBC, any earnings received are considered Canadian income, unless otherwise indicated by Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) in writing prior to arrival.

Please note that, by law, deductions are taken from your salary for Canada Income Tax, Canada Pension Plan (CPP) and Employment Insurance (EI). If you receive fellowship earnings, these will not be deducted for CPP and EI.

Please contact a financial advisor or the Canada Revenue Agency (CRA) for tax and financial information.

You can also access the CRA website for a self-directed online course on understanding taxes, which includes help on how to file a tax return.

If you have any questions about paying income tax in Canada, please refer to CRA’s information for non-residents or contact the International Tax Services Office (collect calls are accepted):

  • Calling from Canada and the U.S.: 1 800 267 5177
  • Calling from outside Canada and the US: 1 613 952 3741
  • Fax: 1 613 941 2505

Get information about taxable benefits related to UBC housing programs.

Banking and Credit Cards

There are a number of banking institutions and branches for you to choose from in British Columbia. Several banks are located near UBC's Vancouver campus, including:

Automated Teller Machines (ATMs) can be found on campus and throughout Vancouver.

Housing and Child Care

Contact UBC's relocation Team and find housing information: Finding Housing

Resources, links, and contacts for help from UBC's housing and relocation services team in finding a home to buy in Vancouver or Kelowna: Buying a home in BC

Find Vancouver & Kelowna Child Care resources: Child care and schooling options

In order to have an official appointment in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology at UBC, please submit the following documents to our HR Manager, Mark Mendoza (

  1. Copy of your passport (foreign employees only)
  2. Copy of work permit (foreign employees only)
  3. Copy of SIN
  4. Copy of Ph.D. or MD
  5. Copy of Curriculum Vitae
  6. Copy of signed offer letter supplied by your Supervisor

Building and Lab Access

Please ensure to sign up for Campus Wide Login (CWL) Account and apply for UBC Card, so our staff, Naz Khan ( can grant you access to our building and lab.

Campus Wide Login (CWL) Account

CWL Sign-up allows you to create a unique login name and password. A CWL and password is required to access your UBC email and a variety of UBC's online applications.

If you do not have a Campus Wide Login (CWL) Account, please sign up immediately: CWL Sign-up

As soon as you obtain a CWL, please apply for a UBC card for your access to our building and labs.

UBC Email

Once your CWL has been created, please contact our IT Manager, Metha Kijsawangwong:

He will assist you in creating your UBC email account.

UBC employee orientation hub

This UBC employee orientation hub is a self-directed resource and learning space to assist new faculty and staff in navigating UBC. Regardless of your specific role, this resource hub is designed to support you during your first couple months at UBC. (Canvas access required)

New to UBC Vancouver Resource Hub

Questions? If you have questions or need help in your first days and weeks at UBC, contact Sara Sawatzky at

Please visit our IT Support page for more information regarding onboarding: UBC BMB - IT Support

As a new employee, a number of courses are mandatory to meet WorkSafeBC and UBC requirements: UBC Safety & Risk Services

You will find the following mandatory training and surveys in your Workday - Sign in

Mandatory Health & Safety Training for All Workers 

Mandatory Privacy & Information Security Fundamentals Training for all Workers


  • Employment Equity & Inclusion Survey
  • Recruiting Experience Survey

Lab Safety Training

You will be notified and instructed by our staff, Naz Khan:

What training is required for working in a lab?

Once your appointment is complete in our HR system (Workday), you will receive your onboarding tasks to complete within Workday.

Onboarding tasks (CWL required)

Questions? Contact ISC


If you are eligible, Workday will notify you to enrol in the UBC employee benefits.

Please check your eligibility: UBC HR Benefits Eligibility and Plan Cost

Benefit plan details: UBC Benefit Plan

Questions?: Contact Benefits

UBC card

A UBC card identifies you as an active student, faculty or staff member.

UBC cards grant you access to:
  • UBC Library privileges
  • Building access and access to card-controlled rooms
  • UBC Bookstore e-Money purchases
  • Food Services' dining convenience and discounts
  • Meal plans for Housing residents
  • Athletics facilities

Apply for a UBC Card: Apply Online

You will need to pick it up from the key desk at the back of the Bookstore.

Library Card

  • Your UBC card is your library card.
  • Obtain your card from the UBC Carding Office
  • A valid UBC card is required to borrow books and use library services.
  • A valid UBC CWL account is required to access library eResources.


Benefit plan details: UBC Benefit Plan

Questions?: Contact Benefits

  • UBC Wellbeing: Find resources for wellbeing strategic framework, tools and workshops.
  • UBC Recreation: Find information about how to stay active at home, fitness classes and general wellness
  • UBC HR Webpage: Find information about Staff and faculty mental health resources and how to get support

Canvas Courses (CWL access required)

Research Associates employed at UBC on a work permit are required to renew their work permits prior to the expiry of their current work permit if their appointment is to continue beyond the expiry of their current work permit.

There are normally two ways in which foreign academics can obtain a temporary work permit: under a Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA) exemption, or  through an LMIA.

Faculty Relations arranges for all LMIAs or LMIA exemptions for tenure stream faculty and research associates. LMIA exemptions may be granted by Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) in specific circumstances, such as a work permit granted for an accompanying spouse, or a post graduation work permit granted to a recent graduate of a Canadian university.

A positive LMIA must be obtained for all other foreign academics. The LMIA is an opinion provided by Service Canada to IRCC (and the employer), which assesses the likely impact that hiring a foreign academic may have on the Canadian labour market.

Please visit the Faculty Relations website for complete information on topics such as:

  • Work Permit
  • Labour Market Impact Assessment (LMIA)
  • Implied Status
  • Work Permit Renewal and MSP coverage

How to apply for a Work Permit: Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) webpage

Please visit the UBC HR Immigration page for:

  • Immigration Steps for foreign nationals
  • Permanent Residency
  • Citizenship