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5 things you need to know about the new Birks

Revamped student centre emphasizes enhanced, integrated service and online tools
July 25, 2013
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By Tom Peacock

Birks centre before the renovationsAs of August 12, the newly renovated Birks centre will offer an expanded array of services. | Photo by Concordia University

The Birks Student Service Centre is set to reopen August 12 at 1 p.m. following extensive renovations — and the changes are more than skin-deep.

The new, improved Birks aims to provide more personalized and streamlined assistance in a comfortable, inviting space.

1. It’s a one-stop shop
The centre’s staff will offer you an integrated service that includes a review of your file to make sure there are no outstanding issues.

New touchscreens will further streamline your visit by processing the requests and reducing wait times. The old service counter is gone: the upgraded space will house eight new permanent service desks, as well as four additional desks for peak periods. Upholstered, bench-style seating will replace the plastic seats in the waiting area.

Staff will also point you in the right direction if you need to visit another department — while working hard to minimize the necessity of going elsewhere.

“Students can feel lost in a university the size of ours,” says Brad Tucker, associate vice-president of Student and Enrolment Services. “We hope they find the new service approach useful for navigating the university, and that they understand we are here to help them solve problems: to get what they need when they need it, whenever possible.”

2. The service will be speedy 

The start of each semester is the busiest time for students. To meet increased demand, members of the centre’s Front-line Administrative Services Team (F.A.S.T.) will be on duty for the last week of August and the first two weeks of September.

At temporary kiosks, they’ll offer quick processing of requests for simple information, general services including tuition-fee payments, and new student ID cards.

3. You can pay your tuition online
While Birks still accepts tuition fees, you can also pay through your bank’s online bill payment service if you are a client of Royal Bank, Scotiabank, Laurentian Bank or Toronto Dominion (TD) Bank.

4. Your proof of full-time student status for OPUS is also online
In order to obtain a discounted student OPUS transit card from the Société de transport de Montréal (STM), you need to provide proof of full-time student status.

Getting this proof used to require a visit to Birks. Now, you can simply log on to the MyConcordia portal and click on “Attestation Letters.” Eligible students will see an STM-OPUS Card letter; print it out and take it to the STM to get your discounted transit pass.

5. You can find out what you need before you go

The renovated centre will offer an expanded array of services, but it’s still a good idea to know what you’re looking for before you show up.

A full list of services offered by Birks is available on the centre’s web page. Check it out before you visit.

Related links:
•    Birks Student Services Centre 
•    Get to know your Student Services



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