An informative welcome for students
September 14, 2021
A team of Queen’s staff and student volunteers went door-to-door in the university district neighbourhoods on Sept. 8-10, welcoming students who have returned to Queen’s and Kingston.
Through an ongoing partnership with Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox and Addington Public Health, the mobile vaccination clinic bus was parked at Earl and Aberdeen streets, and 128 COVID-19 vaccinations were given to students as part of this initiative.
Team members also handed out welcome kits filled with important information related to COVID-19 as well as living in Kingston.
Mary Ann Tierney, Manager, Student Community Relations, Student Affairs, who led the initiative, says that her experience speaking with students was extremely positive.
“The students were genuinely grateful that we were stopping by to say hello, check-in, and to see if they had questions regarding living off-campus or regarding local by-laws,” she says, adding that she and her colleagues connected with approximately 1,000 students over the three days. “A common theme that kept coming up during our conversations is that students are very happy to be back in the classroom for in-person learning.”
The Queen’s team partnered with City of Kingston by-law enforcement. Several by-law staff joined the walkabouts and helped provide further details about specific by-laws related to large gatherings, provincial regulations, property standards, and other questions from students. Also taking part were university partners from Student Wellness Services, the Human Rights and Equity Office, Off-Campus Living, and Athletics & Recreation.
As they made their way along near-campus streets, team members had many frank conversations with students. Students were also able to ask any questions about the 2021-22 academic year and university resources the university provides.
“It is very important that our students are aware of and understand their responsibilities as not only members of the Queen’s community but of the Kingston community,” says Lindsay Winger, Assistant Dean of Student Affairs, Support Services and Community Engagement. “As we continue to make our way through the pandemic, it’s important that we work together, stay informed, and help everyone stay safe and healthy.”
A total of 600 welcome kits were distributed and included the Off-Campus Student Living Guide, the City of Kingston’s waste sorting guide, 400 garbage bag tags from Waste Management, along with donated goodies from Student Wellness Services, Human Rights and Equity Office, Student Experience Office, Campus Book Store, and KFL&A Public Health.
The Off-Campus Student Living Guide helps connect students to all of the services and supports available from the university. It also helps them understand how to play a positive role in the community during the pandemic. The guide covers a wide variety of topics, including tips on staying informed, getting engaged in the community, keeping the community safe, and exploring Kingston.