Things will look different at the University of Canberra this semester. Although, I suppose we’re used to that.
Coming back to campus in semester one 2021 will involve a lot of safety protocols that everyone needs to be aware of.
UC has provided a dedicated COVID-19 advice page that provides a list of resources and will continue to update staff and students via regular emails.
Face-to-face verses remote classes.
Semester one will see a transition back to face-to-face classes with more academic programs being run on campus. However, to support students in isolation or studying remotely, classes will have an online option where possible.
Though, not all classes can, while maintaining the best standard of education, provide online classes. If you are unable to attend in-person classes you can reach out to student services and your faculty to discuss options.
Each room on campus has an individual Check in CBR QR code that staff and students must use before entering.
Mandatory masks (for some)
While masks are being encouraged for everyone on campus, particularly when social distancing cannot be maintained, some people will be required to wear masks.
Masks will be compulsory for students and staff in all on-campus workshops, laboratories, and practical activities, and strongly encouraged in tutorials and lectures.
UC will be providing cloth masks for staff and students who will be undertaking these activities. Those identified as eligible can collect a mask from the UC library service desk during O-week.
Returning to ACT
Depending on where you are coming from, the process for returning to ACT is constantly changing. UC is currently working closely with the ACT Government to provide support to students returning to campus.
As of 3pm on Friday the 29th of January ACT Health has no listed COVID-affected areas that will require quarantine. However, travel advice is constantly changing so it is important to continue to monitor the situation.
A complete list of COVID-affected areas can be found here.
The process for returning to ACT in the coming weeks from a COVID-affected area will be different for those considered an ACT resident or non-resident for ACT Health purposes, as well as whether they are returning to private or UC residental accommodation.
ACT residents that are returning from a COVID-affected area must notify ACT Health of their intention to return. You can submit a declaration here.
Many new and continuing students are not ACT residents, which will affect how and when they can return to the ACT, but UC is working to seek clarity on the process for these students.
It is not legally permitted for any non-resident who has been in a COVID-affected area to enter ACT without a valid exemption. You can apply for an exemption here.
UC has been reaching out to all affected students to assist with the exemption or declaration process. To contact UC regarding your return to ACT, email: email@example.com
Living on res
For those living on campus accomodation communication is key.
If you’re living on campus and returning from a COVID hotspot or are a new resident with an approved exemption, you are required to contact your residential provider (UniLodge) at least 48 hours before you travel.
If you are required to quarantine you cannot do so in shared accommodation but don’t fret, UniLodge will find individual accommodation for you for the length of your quarantine. If UniLodge cannot find any appropriate accommodation they will advise you not to travel, at least until accommodation can be organised.
If you don’t follow UniLodge’s advice on travel you may need to pay for your own hotel quarantine.
Contact information for Uni res:
- UC Lodge +61 2 6110 4000
- Cooper Lodge +61 2 6109 4200
- Weeden Lodge +61 2 6113 5000
- Campus West +61 2 6185 1820
Internships and placements
Internships and placements can be stressful and hard to organise, but as far as COVID goes, the UC Careers team will be looking out for you. At the moment majority of internships and placements can go ahead. Independent companies and organisations you work with may have their own COVID safe protocols that you have to follow. If the situation changes, the UC Careers team will work with you to make other arrangements or amend your placement.
You can contact the UC Careers team for urgent queries regarding COVID-19 on 6201 2660.
O-Week is going ahead! And it’s looking like a big one. UCLife has stepped up to the challenge and, working closely with ACT Health, will make sure O-Week is as safe as possible.
If someone appears at any UCLife event with respiratory symptoms or is known as a close contact or arriving from a COVID Hotspot Medical and Counseling Services will ensure they are safely moved to an isolation space until they can be transferred off-campus.
UCLife will also provide masks at all events for anyone who wants one and the University is encouraging all staff and students to wear a mask on campus.
You can find all the information on O-Week events on the UCLife Facebook page.
Clubs and Societies
Clubs and societies have spent the last year working hand-in-hand with UCLife to make sure that the UC Community is still up and thriving whether it’s online or in person. This year will be no different! Larger events, such as balls, may not be able to go ahead as usual, but semester 2 2020 showed us that clubs and societies won’t let this stop the celebrations. New events, that promote good hygiene and social distancing, have become the norm!
Societies will be making sure venues are regularly cleaned throughout events, and masks and hand sanitizer will be available.
UC’s main advice is to stay up to date and follow all ACT Health advice. If you are returning from a hotspot OR have cold or flu symptoms UC asks that you do not come to campus and that you get tested for COVID-19. UC’s dedicated COVID-19 advice page can be found here.