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Pandemic updates

Winter 2022 update

Students returned to campus on Monday, Jan. 31. With a few exceptions, classes have returned to in-person delivery. Students taking classes with both in-person and remote delivery will have access to spaces on all campuses to participate in their remote courses. 

Q: Can I get a COVID test on campus?

Yes, you can get a test on campus. The purpose of the rapid testing clinic on campus is to help keep our campus community safe. We are very fortunate to be able to offer this service on campus and encourage everyone to use it. You will be provided your test result 15 minutes after your test. You don’t need a specific reason to book a test and you can book repeat tests. There are currently daytime and evening appointments available and this will be adjusted going forward based on the demand. You can book an appointment here .

Q: How do I know which courses will remain remote?

A: Click here for a complete list of courses remaining remote. If there is no information about your course in this list, please be prepared to return to in person learning starting Jan. 31. Please check your schedule frequently in MUN Self Serve as there have been updates to classroom locations.

Q. How is Memorial responding to the increased presence of the COVID-19 Omicron variant?

A. After considering carefully the many viewpoints, our commitment to health and safety, our duty to provide a rich learning environment as well as data points available to us at this time, we are revising Memorial’s operations, effective Monday, Jan. 31. Find more information here.

Q. What guidance and information is available for students returning to the province who must self-isolate ?

A. The provincial government is relaxing restrictions for those entering and leaving the province. See more here.

Q: How will MUN's vaccine mandate be updated to reflect the need for third doses?

A: Memorial encourages and supports all members of the university community who choose to receive a booster dose of the COVID-19 vaccine as per the public advisory released by the Government of Newfoundland and Labrador. The Mandatory Vaccine Policy for the province does not include boosters at this point, but Memorial is monitoring this and will adjust accordingly.

Q. What is Memorial's mask policy?

A. Mask recommendations are ever evolving. Memorial is maintaining the mask requirement until at least the end of the term. An exception to this is after March 14 in shared office spaces (cubicles) where masks will not be required while seated. Removal of masks will also be allowed in classrooms, common spaces and meetings if actively eating or drinking. Any future changes to masking requirements will be communicated.

If guidance changes, Memorial will inform the community.

Q. What is the status of Memorial’s ventilation systems?

A. Memorial’s ventilation meets the standards of ASHRAE and where possible Facilities Management has upgraded system filters. EHS has audited and inspected all classrooms to be in accordance with OHS legislation and standards. Many buildings on campus have a mechanical ventilation system installed and maintained in accordance with industry standards. These systems supply and exhaust air to reduce the risk of exposure. Maintenance is conducted to ensure the filters are changed and the system is operating as intended. At Memorial, due to the COVID-19 pandemic and recent industry findings, Facilities Management is replacing the MERV 8 filters where possible with higher rated MERV 13 filters. This improves the efficiency of capturing any small particles in the air.

Q. How will we handle many more students missing class due to symptoms (even if it's a cold or flu)?

A. Instructors are asked to remain flexible. Anyone who fails the daily self-assessment for in person labs, practicums, etc., cannot come to campus. It will be important to accommodate students who may not be able to come to campus or attend online classes due to illness. Earlier this term, Senate approved the extension of the sick note policy into the winter 2022 term along with the requirement that only one signature be obtained for the purposes of dropping courses at the undergraduate level. 

Q. Is there any wastewater testing on campus, and what are the plans and resources for dealing with positive wastewater signals?

A. Yes, there is wastewater testing and we are monitoring the provincial results that includes a site at Grenfell Campus. Wastewater testing can give us an early warning signal of undetected COVID-19 in residence. If COVID-19 is found in the wastewater, further COVID-19 testing is completed. You can read more on Memorial's participation in this program here.

Q. How are we revising our procedures to reflect the fact that COVID-19 is airborne?

A. COVID-19 spreads from an infected person to others through respiratory droplets and aerosols (smaller droplets). Memorial continues to seek advice from Public Health on preventive measures to limit the spread of COVID-19. Focus has moved towards self-assessments and not coming to work or class when sick, masks, vaccines and ventilation. At Memorial the vast majority of our classrooms have mechanical ventilation which plays an important role in reducing the risk of spread in indoor environments. We are also fortunate that a very high proportion of the community is vaccinated, and there are just a small number of approved accommodations. If you are at a higher risk, consider an N95/KN95 mask.
We are confident that members of the Memorial community are doing their part to keep everyone safe while on campus, and that our health and safety measures will continue to serve us well as we move through this next phase of the pandemic.

Q. Can on-campus events continue?
A. Yes if all health and safety guidelines can be followed.


Q: Will students be required to be physically distanced in classrooms, labs and lecture halls?

A: Students should try to maintain physical distancing whenever possible. Other measures, such as masks and vaccines, are in place to protect against COVID-19. 

Q: Can students gather in the halls outside classrooms before and after classes?

A: To minimize the amount of time spent gathering in hallways and common areas, students are encouraged to arrive for classes and labs no more than five minutes before they start. Memorial will communicate expectations around navigating campus with clear signage on the floor, in doorways and on hallway walls.

Q: What will happen if my instructor is ill — how will I know if a class is cancelled?

A: Each course outline should include a statement that details how you will be informed if a course is cancelled. Make sure you’re checking your @grenfell.mun.ca email address and Brightspace messages regularly.

Q: Will there be directional and distancing signage to guide people?

A: Yes, we will use signage to provide distancing and directional guidance.

Q: If I am required to self-isolate at any point during the semester, will there be accommodations in place for the on-campus instruction that I am missing?

A: Students who find themselves in this scenario are asked to contact their instructor directly. If you are unable to reach your instructor, students should contact the department head who is responsible for the course. Memorial will make every effort to ensure that all students are able to progress successfully through their course work despite potential challenges associated with COVID-19.

Q: If COVID-19 cases are discovered on campus, will my in-person classes pivot to remote delivery?

A: Memorial will take guidance and directive from public health officials on requirements for isolation or canceling classes, with the hope that any cases can be isolated with minimal impact on university business. However, if necessary and unavoidable, we are well-prepared to pivot to remote instruction.

Q: What should I do if I am not feeling well?

A: Do not come to campus if you are feeling unwell. Contact your course instructor and let them know of your absence. Your course instructors have been asked in a case like this to provide you with flexibility so that you can remain at home. If you’re an undergraduate student, University Regulation 6.7.5 details how you can apply for an alternative evaluation.

Q: What cleaning protocols are in place for classrooms, labs and indoor spaces on campus?

A: Cleaning protocols throughout campus have been enhanced during the COVID-19 pandemic. Cleaning logs are displayed outside washrooms. Facilities Management will continue the current practice of cleaning lecture spaces once per day. These rooms are equipped with disinfectant spray bottles and towels. Each user should clean touch surfaces in their area before and after use and utilize good hand hygiene. Signage is in place to emphasize the need for regular cleaning by users. More details on pandemic cleaning can be found here.

Q: If a student group would like to arrange an on-campus outdoor student gathering does the mandatory mask policy apply to that outdoor gathering?

A: Public Health guidelines for outdoor gatherings should be followed, and masks are not required if physical distancing can be maintained outside. The guidelines can be found here.

Q: If a student group would like to arrange on off-campus gathering does the mandatory mask policy apply?

A: Off campus activities should abide by public health guidelines set by the province of Newfoundland and Labrador. See https://www.gov.nl.ca/covid-19/updates-resources/public-health-orders/.

Q: Will on-campus classrooms be set up to have a minimum of 6 feet separation for students in addition to mandatory masks?

A: As per our established health and safety guidelines, the mandatory mask policy for students who attend in-person classes is the minimum requirement and as such a distance of 6 feet between students is not guaranteed.

Campus Enforcement and Patrol

Grenfell Campus, Memorial University of Newfoundland
20 University Drive, Corner Brook, NL
A2H 5G4, Canada

Phone: (709) 637-6210
Email: cep@grenfell.mun.ca

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