Coronavirus update: September 8, 2020 - 3:30 p.m.

September 8, 2020

The coming academic term is going to be different from any other we’ve experienced at UNBC.  I am exceedingly grateful to our phenomenal faculty and staff who dedicated so much of their time and energy the past few months to create exceptional learning experiences for our new and returning students. 

Everyone at UNBC has gone above and beyond to ensure we are ready for this unique semester. From faculty members who have adapted their courses for alternative modes of delivery, to the incredible team at the Centre for Teaching, Learning and Technology who provided expert assistance, to staff members in every department who worked diligently to maintain service levels, thank you, thank you, thank you! 

Over the past two days, it was my pleasure to participate in modified versions of two annual campus traditions – move-in day for our students living on campus and orientation for new and returning students. On Monday, it was wonderful to see the excitement of so many of our students make their residence suites their new homes. This morning, I greeted hundreds of more students virtually as part of the Virtual Welcome 2020 event. A big thank you to the Housing and Residence Life and Student Life teams who made those events possible.

Today’s update focuses on one significant item, our planning for the Winter Semester. 

In today’s update:

  • The Winter Semester

The Winter Semester

The health and safety of the entire University community remain our top priority as we map out the Winter semester. As we finalize our plans, we are continuously exploring ways to offer more face-to-face instruction opportunities for selected clusters of courses and selected cohorts of students. However, many of our courses will be offered through alternate delivery modes. We are approaching this decision-making process in consultation with the Ministry of Advanced Education, Skills and Training as well as our colleagues at other research universities in B.C. Thank you for your patience, resilience and creativity as we find new ways to offer exceptional teaching, research and service. We have already published a draft Winter semester schedule. On Sept. 11 we will remove that version of the schedule from the website so that we can update it with information about the mode of delivery for all courses and make any necessary changes. We will publish the updated schedule at 9 a.m. PT on Sept. 28. Registration opens at 9 a.m. PT on Oct. 5.

Thanks again to the UNBC community for your outstanding collective efforts and understanding.

Geoff Payne,
Interim President and Vice-Chancellor