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Fall term preparations

COVID-19 update: masks required in classrooms and labs

Campus and Community

By Memorial University

As the fall 2022 semester approaches, Memorial is eagerly preparing all campuses to deliver a safe and vibrant university experience.

All members of our community share in the responsibility of keeping each other and our extended families safe during the upcoming school year, particularly given that most academic programming, services and operations will be offered in person.

The update below includes important information about health and safety that will help us protect ourselves and each other as we come together once again.

Masks required in classrooms and laboratories

As of Thursday, Sept. 1, masks are required in classrooms and laboratories on all Memorial campuses, as well as in the Student Wellness and Counselling Centre (SWCC), Health Services at Grenfell Campus and COVID-19 testing areas.

Masks are also required in health-care facilities operated by regional health authorities.

Masks are strongly recommended, but not required, in all public spaces. They are strongly recommended in offices, at events and in meetings. Please be mindful of other people’s comfort levels and be respectful and supportive of the personal decision to wear a mask if so desired.

Masks are not required for instructors who are lecturing or in performance or industry programs where they are a hindrance to communications and/or interfere with educational objectives.

Masks are a simple and effective means of preventing spread in areas that have a large population and limited movement. Free masks will be available in central locations on all campuses.

The mask requirement will be reviewed monthly. Any changes will be communicated broadly.

Vaccines

It is recommended that all individuals who will be physically on any of Memorial’s campuses have completed a full vaccination series, including any recommended booster doses, if eligible.

Memorial will hold vaccine clinics in alignment with recommendations from Public Health during the fall 2022 semester.

As a reminder, anyone entering Canada is required to stay informed about current regulations and restrictions. The Government of Canada website for travellers is available here.

Testing

A COVID-19 testing clinic will be available on the St. John’s campus and will be open to all members of the university community by appointment.

Labrador Campus, the Marine Institute and Grenfell Campus will communicate testing protocols, respectively.

Staying home when sick

All members of the Memorial community are expected to stay home if they are sick.

As in previous semesters, doctors’ notes will not be required for students who cannot attend class, term exams or other evaluations due to COVID-19-related illness or symptoms.

As always, students should inform their instructors promptly of absences so they can work together to ensure they can keep up with course work.

Employees who are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms should consult with their supervisor about temporary work from home arrangements or leave management.

Additional safety and continuity measures

Hand sanitizer continues to be widely available, Plexiglas barriers are in place in many buildings and enhanced cleaning protocol continues across campuses to help keep everyone safe.

Earlier this year, Memorial conducted a ventilation assessment of teaching spaces to ensure adequate ventilation to minimize the spread of COVID-19. Preventive maintenance continues on building mechanical ventilation systems with upgraded filtration where possible.

Units at Memorial are updating continuity plans in an effort to ensure operations can continue when staff, faculty and instructors are sick.

In managing the response to COVID-19, Memorial will continue to take guidance from provincial Public Health officials and align decisions with Public Health recommendations and directives.

If the COVID-19 situation changes in the province, Memorial’s protocols are subject to change, as well.

Questions

If you have questions about this update, please contact the Office of the Chief Risk Officer.


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