COVID-19 (Coronavirus) information and resources

University communications

From: Dr. James Mandigo
Date: May 7, 2020


Dear Colleagues,

Thank you for your tireless work advancing the UFV mission over the last several months and into the summer semester. Your efforts have been exemplary and demonstrate your dedication and passion for engaging learners, transforming lives, and building community.

We know you may have questions regarding Premier Horgan’s announcement to gradually lift some province-wide restrictions under the BC Go Forward phased plan.

Your health and safety is UFV’s number one priority and the University will strictly adhere to the directives of the BC Provincial Health Officer, the BC Ministry of Health, and the Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills, and Training.

Is the summer semester still online?

UFV will continue to offer only online and remote learning for the summer semester.

Does remote work continue?

In this current phase, remote work will continue as it has for the last two months.

What will the fall semester look like?

In mid-April, two cross-functional working groups were formed and have dedicated their attention and resources towards options for September and how we can meet the needs of students, faculty, and staff.

In the next week, UFV will communicate the processes, standards, and plans on how we will deliver a high-quality educational experience in the Fall with constant and rigorous attention to your health, to students’ health, and to the well-being of our community.

We understand the pandemic will change how programs and services are delivered. For many programs, alternate forms of delivery will continue. Time and resources have been dedicated and will continue to be dedicated to ensure you have the support needed to effectively teach and work remotely as required in September.

Thank you again for your amazing diligence, adaptability, and perseverance. UFV is proud of all you are doing to help students continue their educational journey.

Sincerely,

Dr. James Mandigo
Provost and Vice-President, Academic

 

Previous communications

As we hit the official end of the winter term, thank you to all faculty and staff for your efforts in ensuring continuity for our students. Your dedication has helped students persevere through challenges and changes as they pursue their academic goals.

Updates

Computer labs

The Computer lab in Building D, Room 226 will now be open.

Building G will now be closed to the public. Staff can access via card or by calling security.

Parking fee donation update

As of April 28, 152 employees are voluntarily reallocating a total of $3,980 per month to the UFV Student Emergency Fund, assisting students experiencing urgent and serious financial difficulties. This sum will continue to climb as monthly deductions accrue and possibly more employees join the program.

Employees, alumni, and other community members who wish to make a one-time donation, may do so here.

Please check the UFV Blog for stories relating to COVID-19 and the response from UFV alumni, students, faculty, and staff.


As we head into the last day of exams, thank you for continuing to support students while you work remotely. Within this new reality, your efforts are advancing the UFV mission of engaging learners, transforming lives, and building community.

Office supplies
If you require office supplies to perform your work remotely, Financial Services now provides three options to obtain office supplies. You can find details, including purchasing requirements, ordering and delivery instructions, and forms on the Financial Services site.

Print Services
If large print jobs are required, the Print Shop is open and will provide service for pick-up or for remote work location delivery.

UFV Bookstore order pick-up
Beginning Monday, April 27 book and merchandise orders can be picked up in person at the UFV Bookstore in Abbotsford. Social distancing measures will be in place. Bookstore hours and pick-up details are available here. The Bookstores remain open online with course material and general merchandise items (school supplies and UFV clothing) available through the Bookstore website. The website is now live for summer semester orders.

Student Computer labs
Building G will be closed to the public after Saturday, April 25. The computer lab in Building G, room 210 will also be closing.
The computer lab in Building D, room 204 will remain open.


Withdrawal and grades
In response to feedback from students and in consultation with the Student Union Society, UFV will extend the opportunity for students with ANY PASSING GRADE to petition for a Credit (CR) instead of an earned grade. Students will now have the option of accepting their final grades, petitioning for a CR for any passing grade, or requesting a Withdrawal (W) without academic penalty up to May 8, 2020. Students will be strongly encouraged to discuss their final grades with an academic advisor prior to making any final decisions. More details here.

Student’s gain remote access to computer labs
UFV’s computer labs can now be accessed remotely through a new online tool. This program allows students to access lab resources, including specialized software, from home.
The remote access tool can be accessed through the ITS website.

Please note: this tool is not to be used to conduct synchronous classroom sessions on lab computers. It is designed to provide periodic, intermittent access to lab computers and associated software.

ITS Hours
The IT Service Desk will remain open, with extended hours and service via phone, email, remote desktop control and ticketing system as follows:

Monday to Friday, 8am–8pm
Saturday and Sunday, closed

A complete list of ITS support services can be found on the ITS website.

Building access updates
Changes to computer labs, Building K in Abbotsford, and the Mission campus are included in an updated Campus Access list found here.


Dear Colleagues,

Following our recent announcement regarding changes to our grading system for the Winter, 2020 term, we have received feedback from students asking about being more flexible with the final grade options available to them due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

After meeting with both the current and the incoming Executive of the Student Union Society and discussing this matter further with them, we will extend the opportunity for students with ANY PASSING GRADE to petition for a Credit (CR) instead of an earned grade.

This expediated process will be facilitated through the Registrar’s Office and further details on how to petition for a CR in place of a letter grade will be released shortly.

Students will now have the option of accepting their final grades, petitioning for a CR for any passing grade, or requesting a Withdrawal (W) without academic penalty up to May 8, 2020. Students will be strongly encouraged to discuss their final grades with an academic advisor prior to making any final decisions.

Supporting our students throughout this crisis has been our top priority and we appreciate the opportunity to respond to the needs of our students during these unprecedented times.

Sincerely,

Dr. James Mandigo
Provost and Vice-President, Academic


Dear Colleagues,

Lately I’ve been coming across stories about communities activating – seemingly overnight – to deliver food and care to neighbours in need. As we end another week of physical distancing and self-isolation, these stories have me reflecting on how important it is to have a strong sense of community in the places we live.

That’s why I’m dedicating this week’s video message to our friends and neighbours in our Fraser Valley communities, who have reminded me that by staying apart, we’re standing together.

Watch Joanne's Video Message

Have a restful and happy long weekend,

Joanne MacLean, PhD
President and Vice-Chancellor


Dear Colleagues,

Convocation is one of my favourite days of the academic year and I know how much it means to you to watch our graduates cross the stage. UFV wants to make sure we honour and celebrate students’ achievements in ceremonial fashion in front of our community.

From the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, UFV has followed the direction of the BC Provincial Health Officer and the requirements of our government in maintaining social distance and flattening the curve.

This is why we are postponing our June 2020 Convocation ceremonies.

We are communicating this to students today, and we are actively working on plans for convocation in the future that will give students, faculty, and staff a fulsome and memorable ceremonial experience.

Please be assured that all students who are eligible, and who have completed their requirements for graduation (see UFV Graduation for details), will receive their credentials from UFV by mail in the months ahead – even if they don’t cross the stage until a future date.
Thank you for your patience, understanding, and willingness to adapt to the ever-changing challenges of this time in which we are living.

We look forward to celebrating with students and our campus community when we can do so without reservation and without risk to the health and safety of all involved.

Sincerely,

Dr. Joanne MacLean

President and Vice-Chancellor


Dear Colleagues

UFV is preserving the current grading system to allow most students to earn a letter grade. While we encourage students to complete their courses on time, we have made some adjustments and clarifications to Winter grading. These adjustments reflect our goal to give choice to students in determining how best to complete their semester given the circumstances, while also reflecting the diverse range of program requirements at UFV.

Withdrawal
Students may withdraw from a course without academic penalty up to May 8, 2020. A Withdraw (W) notation will appear on the permanent record, but the course will not count as an attempt for course repeat and program completion purposes.

  • For students who have not yet received a letter grade, they can withdraw from a course now through myUFV.
  • Once students have received a letter grade, the Registrar’s Office will have a simplified process to request a W. No additional approval will be required.

Academic Concessions
Definition: An academic concession is an administrative process that is used when a student encounters an unexpected or extraordinary situation that prevents them from completing course requirements in the expected time.

Actions an Instructor can take for students who are close, but not quite finished as the term ends:

  • Informal accommodation for a slightly later submission for work to be assessed or,
  • Formal accommodation through an Incomplete Contract (I grade notation) to complete the course, normally with 2 months.

Incomplete Grades are granted at the instructor’s discretion, “when a student is unable, due to extenuating circumstances, to complete all of the requirements of a course by the end of the semester and has made sufficient progress and achievement to warrant additional time for completion.”’

In some instances, instructors might also award an “In Progress” notation (IP). This is only awarded in extraordinary circumstances where the course work continues into the next semester and is done in conjunction with the Registrar’s Office and program Head.

Credit grade notation in lieu of a letter grade:
Following completion of the course if a student receives a C- or D grade and can show that the switch to remote and virtual learning affected their results, or if they encountered other difficulties in March and April such as illness, they may petition for a Credit (CR) instead of an earned grade. This process will be available through the Registrar’s Office towards the end of the semester and will require approval of the Dean’s Office.

Note: The Aegrotat standing (AEG grade notation) is still available. The AEG is a compassionate pass, approved by the Dean, based on satisfactory term marks when a student is unable to complete a course due to serious, documented extenuating circumstances.

Refunds
Refunds for courses dropped after the switch to remote and virtual learning will not normally be considered. However, students encountering extraordinary circumstances may use the Late Withdrawal Appeal process through the Registrars’ Office, presenting supporting documentation, to request a partial tuition refund.

Thank you for your dedication and good work during this time.

Sincerely,

James Mandigo
Provost and Vice-President, Academic


Dear UFV Colleague,

UFV Human Resources is pleased to announce all faculty and staff who are working remotely will now be able to use their professional development funds to purchase essential home office equipment.

This means for fiscal year 2020-21 you can purchase:

  • Computers to be used for remote work
  • Computer peripheral devices: printers, scanners, docking stations and web cameras required for remote work
  • Office desks required for remote work
  • Office chairs required for remote work

Please note, purchases made within this category are considered a taxable benefit and the usual criteria for approval will apply with the above additions.

This is separate from the Training and Development Allowance that permanent faculty and staff can use towards the purchase of technology and internet expenses.

All faculty and staff (including sessional, LTA, and temporary staff) are able to access up to $1,500 per fiscal year. If you work less than full-time, the amount will be prorated based on your contract hours. For full details on the Professional Development requirements and approval process please visit the HR Professional Development site.

Sincerely,

Marnie Wright
Associate VP Human Resources


UFV has a new and exciting opportunity for community involvement!

During times of crisis communities come together and assist those in need.

We welcome you to join Research, Engagement & Graduate Studies’ online brainstorming forum on April 9, 2020 at 10 am. Let’s generate a few ideas for helping those in need in the communities UFV serves.

If you have a great idea, or are already working on a project, or if you would like to get involved but are not sure how, please join us, brainstorm, and help our communities when they need it the most.

  • Please RSVP to the meeting here.
  • Please read this article from University Affairs (about what other universities are doing) before the meeting.

*Version 2.15 or higher of the BlueJeans app is recommended.

Some current examples of community engagement during the COVID-19 pandemic are:

  • UFV nursing students are supporting health care workers by doing their grocery shopping and running other errands for their families while they work at the frontline of the COVID-19 pandemic
  • UFV staff have a chance to donate the money they would have spent on parking to a student emergency relief fund
  • The College of Nurses of Ontario is granting temporary certifications to recent graduates
  • Medical students at Memorial University have volunteered to do contact tracing, identifying, and contacting people who may have come into contact with someone with COVID-19
  • Postsecondary institutions and students are supporting communities by assisting those experiencing food insecurity while still practicing social distancing such as at the University of Lethbridge through Campus Care Parcels
  • Okanagan College’s Culinary Arts department is donating food to the local food bank that would originally have been used in class labs and cafeteria meals

Other examples that encourage people to stay healthy and at home:

*If you are unable to join us at this particular meeting, please email tracy.morrison@ufv.ca in the Research Office and she will be able to assist you with further information.

Thank you and we hope to see you soon!


Dear colleagues,

Since many of us are working remotely to help prevent the spread of COVID-19, UFV has suspended bi-monthly parking fees for all staff and faculty until further notice.

As a result, several colleagues have generously offered to donate their parking fees to the UFV Student Emergency Fund, and suggested we provide this option to all employees. Thank you so much for proposing this initiative. We are happy to facilitate a simple way to redirect parking fees.

This fund assists students experiencing urgent and serious financial difficulties. The university is receiving an unprecedented number of requests as a result of the pandemic. Your donation will provide much-needed financial relief.

To donate your parking fees, please complete the online form by April 15, 2020. The reallocation of $12.50 per pay period (or any amount of your choosing) would begin April 30, and cease when parking fees are reinstated. Authorizations received after April 15 will be reflected on the May 15 pay.

You may also make a one-time donation here.

Please read the FAQs for additional information regarding UFV’s parking fee suspension and this initiative.

If you have any additional questions, please reach out to giving@ufv.ca.

Thank you for your consideration. Your support is truly appreciated!

With gratitude,

Anita Nielsen, MMst., CFRE
Executive Director
Advancement & Alumni Relations


Dear Colleagues,

As we wrap up a second week of learning, collaborating, and pivoting in this new normal, I find myself thinking about the people who are at the centre of all this activity.

We know our students are facing new challenges in light of COVID-19. We know there is anxiety and stress for both our current and future students. But we also know our students have the resilience and grit required to come through this experience successfully.

So, today’s video speaks from my heart to UFV’s heart: our students. I want to thank you for everything you’ve done to let them know we’re with them, we’re rooting for them, and we are here to support them.

Watch Joanne's Video Message.

We're going to get through this together.

Be well and take care,

Joanne MacLean, PhD
President and Vice-Chancellor


From: UFV Info
Date: April 2, 2020


Dear Colleagues,

As we work, teach, and adjust to the pandemic environment, it’s important to be aware of the stresses and demands these changes can create. UFV encourages employees to access resources through the UFV Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP). Reliable, accurate COVID-19 health information is available through the BC CDC and Health Canada.

Physical Distancing
Please remind students and colleagues of the need to keep two meters of distance between one another and to continue observing all physical distancing measures. It’s imperative UFV participates in helping slow the spread of COVID-19. Health Canada has a descriptive infographic on this topic to use, print, or share.

ZoomBombing
Reliance on online group collaborative chat tools like Zoom and Blue Jeans has led to an invasive practice called ZoomBombing. More details and how to prevent it here.

Remote teaching workshops
Teaching and Learning is preparing a series of workshops to assist faculty teaching remotely for the spring and summer semesters. Sessions begin Tuesday, April 7. Further information is available on the Teaching and Learning site.

Remote work and Record and Information Management
Working remotely means continuing to uphold the University’s obligation under BC’s Freedom and Information and Protection of Privacy Act (FIPPA). Tips and information for managing records and protecting privacy in a remote work environment are available on the Secretariat webpage.

Summer Registration paused until April 6
Reminder: the UFV Registration System will be off-line until 9am Monday, April 6. More details here.

Health Spending Account and Training/Development Allowance deadlines extended
Reminder: The deadline to submit your Health Spending Account and Training and Development Allowance claims for the 2019/2020 fiscal year is now April 30, 2020. More details here.

-30-


From: UFV Info
Date: March 31, 2020


As week two of remote learning and work progresses, UFV continues to adapt and respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. Thank you for all you are doing to contribute to our mission of transforming lives.

Updates:

Health Spending Account and Training/Development Allowance deadlines extended

The deadline to submit your Health Spending Account claim and/or your Training and Development Allowance claim is now April 30, 2020. You will be able to submit your expenses incurred in the 2019/2020 fiscal year (April 1, 2019 - March 31, 2020) until April 30, 2020. More details here.

Summer Registration paused until April 6

In order to transition summer semester courses online and to ensure the accuracy of course information, the UFV Registration System will be off-line from March 30 through 9am Monday, April 6. More details here.

Social Distancing

UFV Risk and Safety reminds you that physical distancing is a critical step in helping slow the spread of COVID-19 and has been ordered by provincial and federal health authorities. Please remind students and others that it is vital they continue practicing these measures as described by Health Canada.

Health information

If you require health information on COVID-19, including information on symptoms, self-monitoring, and self-isolation protocol, Health Canada has an excellent chart which details specific actions required. Non-medical information about COVID-19, including the latest information on travel and social distancing is available from 730am - 8pm at 1-888-COVID19 (1-888-268-4319) or via text message at 1-888-268-4319.

BC CDC is also a definitive source of official health information.

Human Resources Hours

The Human Resources office is open from 9am - 12noon Monday to Friday with physical distancing measures in place.

Financial Services hours

The Financial Services office in Abbotsford is open 830am – 430pm Monday to Friday. Physical distancing measures will be observed.

-30-


As the COVID-19 pandemic evolves, our community’s reaction to it also changes. UFV is adapting and continuing to deliver education and services because of your ongoing efforts and contributions.
Thank you.

For updates on UFV’s response, please visit the UFV Urgent News Blog and click on the orange button for FAQs posted there.

If you have questions, please email UFV Environmental Health and Safety at COVID19@ufv.ca.

Updated services and access:
For revised hours for all campuses and buildings click here.

Student Services:
UFV remains committed to supporting students through phone, virtual, and online services. Here is a complete list.

ITS hours:
Information Technology Services is available to assist you remotely during UFV’s COVID-19 response.
Here is a list of IT support services and resources.

The IT Service Desk hours are from 8am to 4pm Monday through Friday for remote help by phone and remote desktop control (4610 or 604-864-4610) and 8am-8pm Monday through Friday through email and our ticketing system itservicedesk.ufv.ca or through our website.

Food Services:

  • Cascade Café
    • Abbotsford: Closed
    • Chilliwack Spirit Bear: Closed
  • Catering: Closed
  • Campus Card Office: Closed
  • Print Services: Monday to Friday, 8:00 am to 4:00 (CEP)
  • Abbotsford Quick Print: Closed
  • Tim Hortons: Closed
  • The Parking Desk: Closed

If you require health information on COVID-19, including information on symptoms, self-monitoring, and self-isolation protocol, Health Canada has an excellent chart which details the specific actions required. The province of BC has created a phone service to provide non-medical information about COVID-19, including the latest information on travel recommendations and social distancing. Information is available in more than 110 languages, 7:30 am - 8 pm at 1-888-COVID19 (1-888-268-4319) or via text message at 1-888-268-4319. BC CDC is also a definitive source of official health information.

More information regarding UFV’s response to COVID-19 is available on the UFV Emergency Management COVID-19 site.


Dear Colleagues,

Thank you to our faculty for making the leap to remote teaching on Monday and to staff who helped with this major transition. Your dedication and quick work are greatly appreciated.

UFV is open. As the COVID-19 situation evolves, the University is adapting and providing education and services online wherever and whenever possible. So while the doors to some buildings and services may be closed, UFV remains open, active, and online.

Thank you for moving off campus and for working remotely. As the BC Public Health Officer and others indicate, this is a big part of social distancing, and key to slowing the spread of the virus.

Important new information (these also are posted online):

Summer semester

  • Summer semester classes will continue in an online or remote format only.
  • There will be no face-to-face courses in any of the Summer Semester Full, Early, or Late sessions.
  • Students should continue to register for courses as they normally would through the end of the early registration period on March 27.
  • All registration deposits are refundable if a student registers, but withdraws by April 20.
  • Not all courses scheduled will be offered on-line. On the other hand, some new courses not currently appearing in online calendars, may be provided.

Course withdrawal

  • Students have until May 8, 2020 to voluntarily withdraw from courses for the winter term.
  • Students can choose to withdraw from a course with no adverse academic effect.
  • For courses dropped during this new withdrawal period, a “W” will show on student’s permanent record, but will not count as a course attempt when calculating repeat rules.
  • Students with student loans should connect with Financial Aid (finaid@ufv.ca) and athletes should connect with Alicia.Hurley@ufv.ca prior to withdrawal.
  • Students are able to withdraw from a course through their MyUFV account.
  • No further approval is required.

Parking lot Wi-Fi
UFV is providing access to Wi-Fi hotspots for students, faculty, and staff in several of our parking lots on the Abbotsford and Chilliwack campuses. This means you can drive up, maintain social or physical distance in your car, and access Wi-Fi. See map for locations.

Computer Labs
The following computer labs with social distancing measures in place are available:

  • Abbotsford: Building G room 210
  • Chilliwack: Building A room 1202

Campus access
Please note: revised hours for all campuses and all buildings located here.

Student Union Building
In order to further promote social and physical distancing the Student Union Building (SUB) will be closed at end of day on Wednesday, March 25, with access for SUS executive, and others who have offices in the building and who cannot work remotely.

Building T (Applied Technology and Technical Studies) in Chilliwack will be closed as of 4pm Wednesday, March 25.

Student Services:
UFV remains committed to supporting students through phone, virtual, and online services. Here is an updated and complete list.

UFV Bookstores
The UFV Bookstores will be operating online in order to serve you while maintaining physical distancing measures. The bookstores remain available to process orders placed online, and are offering free shipping for online orders until the end of classes in April.

Food and services

  • Cascade Café:
    • Abbotsford: Wednesday to Thursday, 10am to 2pm then closed until further notice
    • Chilliwack: Closed as of March 25
  • Campus Card Office: Monday to Friday, 9am to 4:00pm
  • Print Services: Monday to Friday, 8:00 am to 4:30pm (CEP) and 12-4 (Abbotsford)
  • Tim Hortons: Closed
  • The Parking Desk: Closed

Thank you for your ongoing work to ensure UFV keeps learners engaged in this challenging environment.


Please be aware ITS is processing remote access for areas prioritized in the order provided by the University.

If staff require specific access or technology they must speak with their manager. Due to high volume and efforts to resource critical operational functions, requests from individuals for remote access IT support will not be addressed at this time. These should flow through managers who can contact itservicedesk@ufv.ca.

Additional methods for remote connectivity are being investigated.

Remember Blackboard, email, and network file access can be accessed remotely without any additional equipment other than a computer (or device) and an internet connection. For more information please see http://www.ufv.ca/ITS.

Thank you for your flexibility and understanding as we navigate this change.

Sincerely,

Darin Lee
Chief Information Officer


Dear Colleagues,

My message to you today is simple: thank you. You have risen to the challenge of this unprecedented moment in our history. And as we introduce new ways of learning and working in the next few weeks that will see our students through to the end of the term, I wanted to share my thoughts and express my gratitude in this video.

Stay up-to-date and informed at ufv.ca/coronavirus. And as we approach the end of this week of uncharted territory, stay safe, be well and know how much your work is appreciated.

Thank you,

Joanne MacLean, PhD
President and Vice-Chancellor


UFV Research Guidelines in Response to COVID-19

Dr. Garry Fehr, AVP of Research, Engagement, and Graduate Studies, has prepared Research Guidelines in Response to COVID-19 for all people involved in research work at UFV. These guidelines will be updated as the situation develops and new information is received. See: www.ufv.ca/research.

Student Research Day goes digital March 31

UFV’s annual Student Research Day is transitioning to a digital/online format so students can display their research posters safely and remotely. There will be no in-person event in Evered Hall as previously planned, and no student micro-lectures.
Deadlines extended for students to register (March 20) and submit their posters (March 27).
Posters will be displayed and scored online Tuesday, March 31.
Prizes have increased to $500; winners announced April 3!

Volunteer judges needed (UFV faculty and staff only): https://forms.gle/LpPyCve7dApF58Js8
Full details: https://www.ufv.ca/research/student-research-day/
Questions? danielle.mijoburch@ufv.ca  
 
Deadline extended to March 30 --  NSERC Undergraduate Research Excellence Awards
The UFV Research Office has extended the deadline to apply for the NSERC Undergraduate Research Excellence Awards to March 30, 2020. Top science students will receive a minimum of $5,625 to engage in full-time, paid research over a 16-week period over the summer, under the supervision of the UFV faculty member. This is a competitive national-level award.
 
Value: $5,625 minimum
Duration: May-August 2020 (16 weeks)
Who: UFV undergraduate students in the natural sciences or engineering
Deadline: March 30, 2020
Questions? kelly.tracey@ufv.ca 

Full details & instructions: https://www.ufv.ca/research/students/awards-and-funding/nserc-undergraduate-student-research-award/
 
Research, Engagement, and Graduate Studies


Dear UFV Faculty member,

My sincere thanks for all your efforts to ramp up and go online, or remotely, for Monday, March 23. We know this is a big change. I appreciate your professionalism and your determination to adapt and continue our mission of engaging learners and transforming lives. 

Faculty are reminded all UFV classes – face-to-face and online – are fully paused this week, March 16-20: no exams or assignments are to be given or requested of students during this time.

After Monday, March 23, all face-to-face exams are cancelled and will not take place. Faculty are asked to work in conjunction with their Deans to determine the most appropriate assessment method for providing students with a final grade.

We’ve received feedback online and via email that in a small number of instances mid-terms and assignments are continuing to be assigned during this “pause” week, March 16-20.

Please do not do this until after remote learning begins on Monday, March 23, and then not be face-to-face.

For the latest updates on UFV’s response to COVID-19, please visit ufv.ca

Thank you for adapting to this new environment and continuing your efforts to deliver education and services to our students.

Sincerely,

Dr. James Mandigo
Provost and Vice-President, Academic

 


Dear colleagues,

As you are aware, UFV has paused all classes for the week of March 16-20 with classes resuming in an online or remote environment on Monday, March 23.

Remote Work:

In order to help protect the health of UFV faculty, staff, students, and the broader UFV community, and comply with the Provincial Health Officers advice, UFV is implementing a phased approach to working remotely.

UFV supports remote work arrangements in situations where duties can be performed from home. Because of the breadth and variety of programming at UFV, one solution may not fit every role.

Remote work arrangements must be approved by supervisors. Human Resources will contact managers on Wednesday, March 18 with more information on next steps.

UFV encourages you to check factual health sources like Health Canada for information relating to COVID-19 symptoms, self-isolation, and testing. The province of BC has also set up a dedicated COVID-19 line at 1-888-COVID19 or text at 1-888-268-4319, or 604-630-0300.

Important UFV updates:

Student Services:
UFV remains committed to supporting students as we move to remote instruction. While we are not offering face-to-face appointments and drop-in sessions in several areas, we are still available to help you. If you are ill or have been outside of Canada within the past 14 days, please do not attend campus in person. Please find the updated UFV Students Services here.

Libraries:
Library services will be available online, however, the libraries at Abbotsford and Chilliwack will be closing. As determined by Library administration, Library staff will continue to work at these locations.

Events:

  • In order help promote social distancing, all internal and all external UFV face-to-face events scheduled to occur between today and April 30 are now cancelled or postponed.
  • All external room bookings at UFV should also be cancelled.
  • All program information sessions, graduation showcases, and other events are cancelled or postponed.
  • UFV is not taking any new requests for campus space from external groups, until further notice. All external groups who have reserved space will be contacted and informed the campus is no longer available for their event.
  • UFV PD Day (April 30) will not be held this year.
  • Graduation photo sessions will occur with appropriate measures in place for social distancing.
  • UFV Convocation is still scheduled to occur in early June and this will be re-evaluated in late April.
  • Assessment services are also cancelled.
  • The following UFV services have modified hours this week:
    • The UFV Bookstores: Abbotsford and Chilliwack: 8:30am – 4:30
    • Tim Hortons: Closed
    • Cascade Café: Abbotsford and Chilliwack 8am – 2pm (Monday – Thursday) closed Friday
    • The Parking Desk: 8:30am – 4:30
    • Campus Card Office: 9am – 4:00
    • Print Services: 8am – 5pm
  • The in-camera UFV Board of Governors meeting (April 2) will proceed with the option for members to attend via video conference. The public portion of the meeting will not occur.

Counselling for faculty and staff:

Support for faculty and staff is available through the UFV Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP) provider, Homewood Health. Homewood provides immediate, confidential help and may be contacted, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, toll free at 1-800-663-1142.

Thank you for adapting to this new environment and for continuing your efforts to deliver education and services to our students.

Sincerely,

Dr. James Mandigo
Provost and Vice-President Academic


All UFV Trades and Health Studies classes are now paused for the week of Monday, March 16 through Friday, March 20.

More information regarding Trades classes will be available at the end of the week.

Health Studies classes, including Nursing, Certified Dental Assistant, and Health Care Assistant, will resume Monday, March 23 in a remote learning format.

This is in addition to yesterday’s announcement to pause all other UFV classes before switching to remote learning March 23.

The University, our buildings, and our services remain open. Student support services, libraries, residences, computer labs, classrooms with computer labs, art studios, and the athletic centre will remain open.

For more information please monitor UFV.ca and visit our UFV COVID-19 FAQs page.


Dear colleagues,

I’m writing to update you on some important developments relating to UFV’s response to the COVID-19 situation.

UFV is balancing delivering quality education and programming with continuing to provide a healthy environment for our faculty, staff, and students – our number-one priority.
UFV is very mindful of the Provincial Health Officer’s recommendations regarding preventive personal hygiene measures, social distancing, avoiding large gatherings, and travel recommendations.
To proactively reduce the overall footprint on our campuses and increase social distancing, UFV, like other post-secondary institutions across BC, will change how course material is delivered for the remainder of the winter semester in the following ways:

  • Beginning on Monday, March 16, with the exception of classes in the Trades programs and Health Studies, all classes, both face-to-face and online, are paused for one week to allow faculty to transition course content for delivery via remote learning and assessment.
  • Classes will resume in a remote learning environment on Monday, March 23.
  • Trades programs (within Applied and Technical Studies) and Health Studies programs (within the Faculty of Health Sciences) will continue in person with social distancing measures in place for the time being.
  • All face-to-face final exams are cancelled and faculty are asked to work in conjunction with their Faculty Deans to determine the most appropriate assessment method for providing students with a final grade.
  • The University, our buildings, and our services remain open. Student support services, libraries, residences, computer labs, classrooms with computer labs, art studios, and the athletic centre will remain open.
  • UFV Teaching and Learning has created a website and tools to facilitate this transition and support faculty with remote learning course delivery. Faculty are asked to work with them directly.
  • Faculty members will be providing further information to students over the coming week on information specific to their individual courses. Here are some FAQ’s for students.
  • Questions regarding current and planned research and scholarly activities should be addressed to the Office of Research, Engagement, and Graduate Studies regs@ufv.ca
  • Students currently participating in off-campus placements, internships, co-ops, and practicums may continue with the permission of their host organization and are required to adhere to all of their safety procedures and guidelines including the need for self-isolation after returning from international travel.
  • Staff and administration will continue to work under normal UFV business hours. If you are sick, please stay home and contact your supervisor.

As we have done many times in our past, UFV will adapt to this challenge and find unique and innovative ways to fulfill our mandate and continue educating. We will continue engaging learners and transforming lives.

We know this shift may cause disruption. I urge you to lend a hand to your colleagues, be patient with each other, and remember we are in this together as one community.

Sincerely,

Joanne MacLean
President and Vice-Chancellor


Dear Colleagues,

The COVID-19 situation is dynamic and changing rapidly (read the latest update from UFV here).
UFV is currently open with all classes proceeding as scheduled.

The University is planning and working on ways to mitigate any possible disruption to classes and programs that could surface.

Teaching and Learning is anticipating an increase in use of our online learning management system.

It is important for faculty members to consider how to best teach their courses and conduct exams should a situation arise where UFV is required to limit the delivery of face-to-face classes and assessments.
Faculty members and students who have not logged into myClass, or have not done so recently, should login to ensure smooth access to the system.

To login to myClass please:

  1. Go to the myClass portal or,
  2. On mobile devices, click on three white lines next to the UFV logo, then go to TOOLS >myClass

Enter User Name: UFV ID number (e.g. 300999999)
Password: your myUFV password

For video instructions on accessing myClass, please go to:
https://video.ufv.ca/media/How+to+Access+UFV+myClass+%28Blackboard%29/0_rhzpr7e6

If you require assistance setting up your online course please contact Teaching and Learning at tlcevents@ufv.ca.

For assistance with logging in to myClass, please contact the IT Service Desk at itservicedesk@ufv.ca

Thank you for logging in.

Sincerely,

Maureen Wideman
Associate Vice-President, Teaching and Learning


Dear UFV colleague,

While UFV remains open under regular business hours with classes continuing as scheduled, the COVID-19 situation continues to evolve. The BC Ministry of Health made several recommendations on Thursday.

Here are the important developments relating to UFV and our faculty, students, and staff.

As of March 12, the University is aligning with the following recommendations from the BC Ministry of Health and the Provincial Health Officer:

  • All UFV events or gatherings attended by 250 people or greater are now cancelled. Classes at UFV do not exceed this maximum and will proceed as scheduled.
  • As recommended by the Provincial Health Officer, the requirement of obtaining a doctor’s note to document a short term illness is suspended for students, faculty, and staff. Requiring these notes puts undue stress on the medical system.
  • As recommended by the Provincial Health Officer, all UFV-related travel for faculty, staff, and students outside of Canada, including to the US, is cancelled or suspended until these provincial recommendations are lifted.
  • Effective March 12, the Public Health officer is recommending all British Columbians avoid all personal travel to countries outside of Canada. Faculty, students, or staff members who choose to travel outside of Canada for personal reasons will be required to self-isolate for 14 days upon returning to Canada and before returning to a UFV campus.
    • If travel was booked prior to 3pm on March 12 please contact UFV Human Resources at hrsupport@ufv.ca for further information regarding self-isolation and returning to work.

UFV will continue to monitor the changing COVID-19 situation and will communicate whenever there is a significant update from the Ministry of Health, or on Tuesdays and Thursdays.

UFV encourages you to check factual health sources for information relating to COVID-19. The BC Centre for Disease Control has an excellent Frequently Asked Question guide to correct some of the misconceptions around this virus.

If you have questions, please email UFV Environmental Health and Safety at COVID19@ufv.ca, visit the UFV Risk and Safety webpage for FAQs, the Canada Health FAQ webpage, or call the Public Health Agency of Canada coronavirus information line at 1-833-784-4397. Please check UFV.ca for updates.

Sincerely,

Jacqueline Toering
Director, Risk and Safety


Dear UFV Colleague:

I understand there is heightened awareness and a raised level of concern regarding COVID-19. I want to reassure you the health and wellness of our students, faculty, staff, and our community is of paramount importance. The University is closely monitoring the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and the quickly evolving health situation in BC and around the world.

UFV is focused on planning and working to mitigate possible disruptions to classes and programs while this situation evolves.

In the event we have to consider alternatives to holding classes on campus, we will have more information regarding contingency plans and online options in the next few days.

At this point, UFV is not aware of any students, faculty, or staff who have been diagnosed with the virus. If there is a presumptive or confirmed case of COVID-19 at UFV, information will be provided quickly to the community by the University and by the relevant health agencies, including Fraser Health, consistent with protocols and commitments with those agencies.

As of now, the Public Health Agency of Canada has assessed the health risk associated with COVID-19 as low for the general population in Canada, although this could change rapidly.

FAQs
UFV FAQs will help alleviate some of the questions you have about attending or teaching classes, benefits, sick days, or preventing the spread of COVID-19. As this situation changes, so will these FAQs.

More detailed information is available in this UFV Urgent News blog post on prevention, travel advisories, self-isolation, and other related information. In the days ahead, we will have more web resources available with more answers coming online.

Planning:
In mid-February UFV convened a group of stakeholders to monitor, plan, and coordinate actions as new information emerges. This group is in communication with Fraser Health and other relevant health authorities as required.

Classes, business hours, events:
UFV is open under regular business hours. The Office of the Public Health Officer and BC CDC have not yet indicated that it is necessary to cancel classes, school events, outings, field trips, or gatherings.

Cleaning:
The Janitorial Services department at UFV is taking extra precautions during daily cleaning routines to help promote a healthy and clean environment for staff, students, faculty and other members of the university community.

Janitorial Services is:

  1. Increasing the frequency of cleaning on high touch surfaces (i.e. high traffic doors, handrails, and other highly used surfaces). These are now being cleaned twice a day, rather than once a day.
  2. Increasing the monitoring of soap and hand sanitizer dispensers, including a daily audit to ensure dispensers are full of soap and in good working order.
  3. Cleaning door hardware in less commonly used areas on a daily basis rather than weekly.
  4. Increasing the purchase of consumables including paper towels, toilet paper, hand soap, and hand sanitizer to ensure stock levels are high.

Diversity:
UFV encourages you to avoid assumptions about the risk of infection that may be based on a person’s ethnicity or travel history. UFV is inclusive, welcoming, embraces diversity, and supports cross-cultural exchange. No person should be targeted in any way, or subjected to discrimination as a result of a misguided perception they may have been exposed to COVID-19. Any discrimination or harassment of this nature will not be tolerated at UFV.

Counseling:
As a result of the coronavirus outbreak, you may be worried about the health and safety of yourself or your family and friends. This is a challenging and potentially confusing time. It is not uncommon to experience higher levels of stress and feelings of being overwhelmed. If this is your experience, please seek support.

UFV Counselling Services:
Abbotsford, Room B214, 604-854-4528
Chilliwack, CEP A Building, Room A1318, 604-795-2808

After-Hours Support:
24 hour crisis line for BC (1-800-784-2433)

For faculty and staff:
Support for faculty and staff is available through the UFV Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP) provider, Homewood Health. Homewood provides immediate, confidential help and may be contacted, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, toll free at 1-800-663-1142.

More questions:
If you have questions, you can email UFV Environmental Health and Safety at COVID19@ufv.ca, visit the UFV Risk and Safety webpage, visit the Canada Health FAQ webpage, or call the Public Health Agency of Canada coronavirus information line at 1-833-784-4397. Please check UFV.ca for updates.

Finally, UFV encourages you to check factual health sources for information relating to COVID-19. BCCDC has an excellent Frequently Asked Question guide to correct some of the misconceptions around COVID-19.

Thank you for your concern, your steadfast resolve to continue our mission, and your ability to adapt in the face of this challenge.

Sincerely,

Dr. Joanne MacLean
President and Vice-Chancellor


UFV is closely monitoring the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak and the quickly evolving health situation in BC and abroad. In mid-February UFV convened a group of stakeholders to monitor, plan, and coordinate actions as new information emerges. This group is in communication with Fraser Health and other relevant health authorities as required.

UFV is not aware of any students, faculty, or staff diagnosed with the virus. In the event of a presumptive or confirmed case at UFV, information will be provided quickly to the community by the University and by the relevant health agencies, consistent with protocols and commitments.

UFV Facilities Management has commenced intensive surface level cleaning as a precautionary measure to help prevent the spread of infectious diseases.

In BC, Canada, and many other countries, health authorities are in active containment mode, detecting cases and responding quickly to prevent the virus from spreading. Health Canada and the BC Centre for Disease Control (BCCDC) continue to advise that the health risk for Canadians remains low.

UFV encourages you to check factual health sources for information relating to COVID-19. BCCDC has an excellent Frequently Asked Question guide to correct some of the misconceptions around COVID-19.

Symptoms and Seeking Treatment
The World Health Organization indicates that mild COVID-19 case recovery time is two weeks. According to the BCCDC, symptoms include:

- Fever
- Cough
- Muscle aches,
- Difficulty breathing

If you are concerned you may have been exposed to, or are experiencing the symptoms of, COVID-19, you should contact your primary care provider, or call 8-1-1 where you will be connected to a health professional.

Precautions and Prevention
While the risk is cited by health authorities as low, precautionary measures to avoid transmission of coronavirus are similar to measures to prevent colds and influenza:

- Wash your hands frequently for at least 20 seconds using soap and water
- 60-90% alcohol-based hand sanitizers can be used to clean hands if water is not available
- Do not touch your face/eyes/mouth with unwashed hands
- When you sneeze or cough, cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or your elbow and then wash your hands
- Stay home when you are sick – here is some information on self-isolation.
- If you are sick, avoid contact with others who may have weakened immune systems

Travel to/from China and Iran:
The Public Health Agency for Canada advises Canadians to avoid all non-essential travel to Iran and China and avoid all travel to the province of Hubei, China. If travel to these countries cannot be avoided, BCCDC has a number of suggestions regarding precautions that can be taken to avoid spreading the virus. For complete travel instructions please read the UFV Urgent News blog post here.

If you have questions, you can email UFV Environmental Health and Safety at ehs@ufv.ca, visit the Canada Health FAQ webpage, or call the Public Health Agency of Canada COVID-19 information line at 1-833-784-4397.


Sincerely,

Jacqueline Toering,
Director, UFV Risk and Safety


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