As cases of COVID-19 continue to rise rapidly across the province, the Ontario government has announced a province-wide shutdown that will go into effect as of Dec. 26 and last for 28 days. During this shutdown period, Premier Doug Ford is advising all Ontarians to stay at home to the fullest extent possible, noting that travel outside your region should be limited to only essential purposes.
In accordance with the provincial announcement, the university is strongly urging all students to avoid returning to Kingston until after the shutdown ends on Jan. 23, unless absolutely necessary. This includes students living both on and off campus and international students who were scheduled to travel to Kingston for the start of the winter academic term.
- This means that the start of in-person classes will be delayed, with the exception of a limited number of classes that require in-person teaching as permitted by the government, such as clinical training that supports health-related programs (e.g. Medicine, Nursing, Rehabilitation Sciences)
- Students in other programs who were expecting to begin on-campus activity in the winter term will receive further communications from their faculty or program office.
- Students who are scheduled to return or move into a Residence building are strongly encouraged to remain in their home communities, unless absolutely necessary. These students will receive additional information from Residence Life Services shortly.
- International students travelling to Kingston for the start of the winter term are strongly encouraged to delay their arrival, unless absolutely necessary. These students will receive additional information from the Queen’s University International Centre shortly.
- For already approved on-site research activity, if researchers can work remotely (from home) they should do so, only coming on campus as necessary. New requests for on-site activity are suspended. Important information on research continuity planning, including on-site access, human participant research, and field research, is available on the Vice-Principal (Research) website.
- All athletic and recreation facilities are closed for in-person access.
- On-campus access for employees will be limited. Only essential staff and faculty or those who must be on campus to do their work should be on campus. All other faculty, staff, senior administration, and student leadership will work remotely except for required ad hoc access (for example, to record a lecture, print documents, or retrieve files) or those with accommodation requirements.
- All university-sponsored travel outside of Canada remains suspended indefinitely. This affects students, staff, and faculty and includes all future exchange, study abroad, letters of permission, faculty-led programs, internships, research placements, community-engaged learning, practicums, and conferences.
More information on the impact of the province-wide shutdown and its impact on Queen’s will be available in the new year. Units, department, and faculties across the university will be providing updates on their services on their websites and through other communications channels.
Queen’s wishes to thank everyone for their efforts to date and to encourage everyone to continue to do their part to keep their family, friends, and community safe from the spread of COVID-19.