April 17, 2020 - 2:45pm
A message for Camosun employees from President Sherri Bell
Update: COVID-19 and the months ahead
The past few weeks have been incredibly demanding on students and employees at Camosun College, and we all have questions about what the future holds.
We were quick to transition from face-to-face instruction and services to help get students to the end of the winter semester. Many students are now completing their assignments and final exams because of your efforts. Thank you!
A lot of creativity and hard work has gone into making sure the bulk of normal course offerings are available over the summer semester using online technologies.
Looking ahead, the only certainty is that we need to be ready for anything. The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted every aspect of our lives from celebrating family milestones and spending time with friends through to how we go grocery shopping.
On April 15, our Provincial Health Officer, Dr. Bonnie Henry, during her COVID-19 media briefing stated, “Normal is going to look quite different for some time.”
Attending a post-secondary institution is not only about receiving an education, for many students it is also the social experience and being part of a learning community. We know students miss coming on campus and staff members certainly miss the in-person experience as we interact with one another and the students we serve. The hustle and bustle of campus life is gone, replaced by a new silence.
I believe that we are social creatures at heart and that no amount of video conferencing can replace the human kindnesses and interactions that form part of the reason we chose to work in education.
There’s a lot of discussion currently underway throughout the province about what fall will look like for colleges and universities. Questions are being asked: Will it be fully online? Entirely back to normal with classes in full swing? Or maybe more of a hybrid? Will classes be somewhere in between with some mitigation using physical distancing? Will small groups for certain classes be permitted? A combination of all of the above? Or, will we need to proceed with plans for a fall semester that later need to be scaled up or scaled back down?
There’s also the question about solvency. Fewer students, especially international students, will affect our bottom line. It’s still too early to know the full impact but as more information becomes available we will share it.
The truth is there’s a lot that we just don’t know. Nobody has the answers. We are hopeful we will learn more in the weeks ahead.
After an initial phase of navigating through our COVID-19 world, we are moving forward. The college is now at a point where we are doing more future planning for different scenarios. We will need to be adaptable, creative and flexible, while being consistent with the Provincial Health Officer’s orders. Of course, the health and safety of students and employees comes first.
Through it all, I want to say thank you for all of your patience. Everyone at Camosun has stepped up to support students, each other and the community. Please keep safe, healthy and continue to care for yourselves and our college community.
Sherri Bell, President
Important Notice for Students - 2:30pm
Get Ready for an Online Summer Semester
This summer, Camosun courses and programs are being offered online or by alternative delivery.
Ensuring our students succeed is our main priority. To help you prepare for online learning and be ready to go, we’ve put together some helpful tips, supports and resources, including:
- Computer and software recommendations
- Tips for buying a computer
- How to download Office 365 Suite (Word, Excel, Outlook, Teams).
- Recommened browsers
- How to aquire a loaner laptop
- How to log on to online courses
- Where to order textbooks
- How to participate in online courses
- How to access the writing centre, library, technology and counselling.
For more details visit: Get Ready for an Online Summer Semester
COVID-19 Safety Plan
The most current copy of the college’s COVID-19 Safety Plan is available here.
- BC Centre for Disease Control
- Public Health Agency of Canada
- World Health Organization
- Travel & Tourism Canada
- COVID-19 Stigma Guide
- Ministry of Health BC COVID-19 symptom self-assessment tool
- How COVID-19 is affecting IRCC
- For non-health related COVID-19 questions (e.g. supports, programs, etc):