Keeping campus running
November 25, 2020
In a typical year, campus facilities would play host to well over 30,000 students, faculty, and staff – but 2020 has been anything but normal. The vast majority of teaching and learning, events, meetings, and other activities have moved online. But there are also Queen’s employees who attend campus every day to ensure that a variety of essential, on-site activities are able to continue safely and smoothly.
“COVID-19 has posed unprecedented challenges that have affected much of how we would operate ordinarily,” says Patrick Deane, Principal and Vice-Chancellor. “I’d like to thank, in particular, the many on-site staff who have been diligently committed to the job of keeping our facilities running for a reduced number of students living in residence, for researchers engaged in essential lab work, and for a limited number of students whose programs involve vital, in-person learning. I want to commend them for their dedication.”
There are a wide range of employee groups—from across departments and faculties—engaged on campus to ensure facilities, infrastructure, technology, teaching, research, administration, and more can continue. Physical Plant Services (PPS), Campus Security, Library staff, the Division of Student Affairs and many other units, together, have kept campus operational, clean, and safe, and have made sure over 1,800 students living in residences have access to meals and safe facilities. Student Affairs is also coordinating essential health and wellness services, and much more.
There are also employees and faculty members present so important research is able to proceed. This means employees are taking care of laboratory facilities and technology and ensuring the highest safety measures are in place. Faculty members and graduate students adhere closely to guidance from the Office of the Vice-Principal (Research) so cutting-edge science can continue.
A few study programs have also maintained on-campus activities, namely the Faculty of Health Sciences. Students in Medicine, Nursing, and other related disciplines, whose success hinges on elements of in-person learning. Health Sciences faculty members and staff have been present to see that students are able to continue their studies safely.
“We’re nearing the end of our first term operating with COVID-19 guidelines in place, and I want to express my gratitude to staff—both on- and off-site employees—who continue to help make it possible,” says Donna Janiec, Vice-Principal (Finance and Administration). “This has been a learning experience for us all, and we have certainly gained insights we can carry forward into next semester that will lend to our future success.”
For information on Queen’s pandemic-related operational adjustments, visit our COVID-19 Information website.