SSC and COVID-19

Current Operations at St. Stephens College (last updated August 20, 2020)

The following operational summary relates only to St. Stephen’s College.  For operational information for the broader University of Alberta campus, please see the University’s COVID-19 Information page.
 

Until further notice, the following operations are in effect at St. Stephen’s College:

For Students and Faculty in all St. Stephen’s College Degree Programs:

  • The College campus remains closed to the general public.  The operations of the College continue via remote delivery during regular business hours (Monday–Friday, 9:00am–4:00pm).  Some on-campus work and research is permitted in accordance with our Protocol for the Resumption of On-Campus Work at St. Stephen’s College.
  • All St. Stephen’s courses continue as scheduled, though courses will be delivered remotely via online instruction. Our Department Chairs are working diligently to support our Students and Associate Faculty members as we transition to online delivery.
  • Practicum placements for St. Stephen’s students are permitted to happen in-person according to the guidelines set out in the St. Stephen’s College Practicum Plan during COVID-19  document.
  • All academic supervision must happen remotely via video conference or telephone (this applies to both general program supervision and research supervision). If students or associate faculty members need assistance in setting-up remote student supervision, please be in touch with your department chair.
  • All College meetings, including board, senate, faculty council, program committees, and other meetings must happen remotely via video conference or telephone.
  • All contact information remains the same. Email communications are preferred.

For Students and Faculty in UAlberta Courses at St. Stephen’s College:


COVID-19 updates for St. Stephen's Faculty, Staff, and Students

To the Faculty, Staff, Students, and Community of St. Stephen’s College
August 20, 2020, 9:00am

The past five months have not only been challenging, but they have stretched many of us in ways we never imagined.  Through this time, I have been so impressed by the capacity of our students and faculty to respond to this unprecedented situation with creativity, adaptability, compassion, and understanding.  All of us at St. Steve’s have been working hard not only to be in care of one another, but also to ensure as smooth a transition as possible to online course and program delivery.  Over the past several months we have held online student forums, workshops for faculty regarding online teaching, we have made available resources for faculty and students to help ease this transition to remote delivery, and we have made policy and administrative decisions that are rooted in compassion and equity so as to adjust to the new realities imposed by COVID-19.  Leading and implementing these activities have been the faculty and staff of the College, who have responded with incredible devotion, resolve, and intention.  We have an incredible team here at St. Stephen’s, and I am thankful for them every day. 

Over the past several months, St. Stephen’s has issued a number of memos for faculty, staff, and students related to college policies and procedures during COVID-19.  These memos are now collected on the COVID-19 Memos for SSC Faculty, Staff, and Students page.  Please consult these documents as you have need.  As always, questions and/or comments are welcome and can be directed to the College.  
 
The faculty and staff of St. Stephen’s College continue to work remotely, though our Resumption of On-Campus Work Protocol is now in effect.  This protocol permits limited and controlled conditions for faculty and staff to conduct some work on-campus.  Protocol is also in place to allow limited and controlled conditions for students to conduct research on campus.

Updates will continue to be posted to the College website as they are available.  As noted in a previous posting, what drives the College’s response to this pandemic is our commitment to “the need to be in care of one another.”  We stand together in this time, and united we will find our way through these strange days.  
 
Warm regards,
Fred Tappenden, Principal and Dean
St. Stephen’s College, at the University of Alberta

Previous Update: Update 4

To the Faculty, Staff, Students, and Community of St. Stephen’s College
March 31, 2020, 9:00am

Effective Tuesday, March 31 and until further notice, all operations of St. Stephen’s College will be delivered remotely. All St. Stephen’s College Faculty and Staff continue to conduct their work, though they will do so while working from home (the only exceptions will be a handful of essential on-campus activities that will be completed on an as-needed basis once every two weeks). The hours of operation for St. Stephen’s College remain slightly reduced: Monday to Friday, 9:00am to 4:00pm, closed on statutory holidays. The College building will be locked and closed. If you need to contact the College, please email or call the main line (780-439-7311). 

During this period of remote work, the College remains open with all courses and other College business being delivered remotely. All College meetings, gatherings, and other events are to be conducted online (eg., via Zoom, Skype, telephone, etc.). 

The purpose of taking these steps is to ensure that our staff and faculty are able to stay home and stay safe for the duration of this public health crisis. By implementing these procedures, all of us at St. Stephen’s are doing our part to participate fully in the Alberta-wide effort to slow the spread of COVID-19. These measures aim to pre-emptively diminish the spread of COVID-19. Our main message at this time is: stay safe and stay home; this is how we can best be in care of one another.

If you have questions about any of these changes or are uncertain of how these impact your studies or work at St. Stephen’s, please reach out to the College. We are happy to discuss these with you and to clarify any questions you have. Or, simply reach out to the College for a friendly hello. The past few weeks have impacted all of us in many unforeseen and at times unimaginable ways. As we continue to navigate the weeks ahead, out hope is that we can be here for one another and to help care for one another.

Info for Students and Faculty in all St. Stephen’s College Degree Programs:
Until further notice, the following operations are in effect at St. Stephen’s College:

  • All St. Stephen’s courses will continue as scheduled, though courses will be delivered remotely via online instruction. Our Department Chairs are working diligently to support our Students and Associate Faculty members as we transition to online delivery.
  • All practicum placements have been suspended until further notice.
  • All student supervision must happen remotely via video conference or telephone (this applies to both general program supervision and research supervision). If students or associate faculty members need assistance in setting-up remote student supervision, please be in touch with your department chair.
  • All College meetings, including board, senate, faculty council, program committees, and other meetings must happen remotely via video conference or telephone.

Info for Students and Associate Faculty in UAlberta Courses at St. Stephen’s College:
All UAlberta courses offered at St. Stephen’s College abide by the directives of the University as outlined at the UAlberta COVID-19 information page (see esp. the COVID-19 Information for Students and COVID-19 Information for Instructors pages). 

General COVID-19 Information for the St. Stephen’s College Community:
It is vital that everyone maintain high levels of infection control. All persons in the St. Stephen’s College community are asked to follow the preventative recommendations as currently outlined by Alberta Health

If you suspect you have COVID-19: (1) self-isolate immediately, (2) do not go to a hospital, physician’s office, lab, clinic, or healthcare facility, (3) complete the online AHS COVID-19 Self-Assessment tool, and (4) contact Health Link (811). If you need immediate medical attention, call 911 and advise them that you may have COVID-19.

As always, up to date and reliable information about COVID-19 can be found at the following websites:

I will continue to be in touch with the St. Stephen’s College community as this matter unfolds, and as further recommendations or requirements arise. 

Warm regards,
Fred Tappenden, Principal and Dean
St. Stephen’s College, at the University of Alberta

 

Previous Update: Update 3

To the Faculty, Staff, Students, and Community of St. Stephen’s College
March 23, 2020, 9:15am

According to our Vision, Mission, and Values, St. Stephen’s College is committed to “honoring and understanding the need to be in care of one another.”  It is this impulse that drives—and will continue to drive—our College’s response to this exceptional and strenuous situation.  In coordination with the University of Alberta COVID-19 response, St. Stephen’s is making every effort to proactively and responsibly do our part to mitigate the effects of COVID-19.  We expect that all members of the St. Stephen’s community will join in this effort.

St. Stephen’s College remains open.  Effective Monday, March 23, 2020, the majority of St. Stephen’s faculty and staff will be working remotely, with only minimal staff on campus to complete on-campus work-related activities.  During this time, our building will be locked and accessible only by key.  Regular business hours are also shortened as follows: Monday to Friday, 9:00am to 4:00pm (closed on statutory holidays).  Rather than visiting campus, anyone with questions for the College are encouraged to email or to call the main line (780 439 7311).

Info for Students and Faculty in all St. Stephen’s College Degree Programs:
Until further notice, the following operations are in effect at St. Stephen’s College:

  • All St. Stephen’s courses will continue as scheduled, though courses will be delivered remotely via online instruction with no in-person learning taking place. Our Department Chairs are working diligently over the next days and weeks to support our Students and Associate Faculty members as we transition to online delivery.
  • All practicum placements have been suspended.
  • All student supervision must happen remotely via video conference or telephone (this applies to both general program supervision and research supervision).  If students or associate faculty members need assistance in setting-up remote student supervision, please be in touch with your department chair.
  • All College meetings, including board, senate, faculty council, program committees, and other meetings must happen remotely via video conference or telephone. 

Info for Students and Associate Faculty in UAlberta Courses at St. Stephen’s College:
All UAlberta courses offered at St. Stephen’s College must abide by the directives of the University as outlined at the UAlberta COVID-19 information page (see esp. the COVID-19 Information for Students and COVID-19 Information for Instructors pages).  

General COVID-19 Information for the St. Stephen’s College Community:
It is vital that everyone maintain high levels of infection control.  All persons in the St. Stephen’s College community, regardless of your status as staff, student, or volunteer, are asked to follow the preventative recommendations as currently outlined by Alberta Health.  This includes (but is not limited to):

  • Practice social distancing (maintaining about 2m from others).
  • Wash your hands with soap and water often. If soap and water are not readily available, you can use alcohol-based hand sanitizer, if hands are not visibly dirty.
  • Avoid touching your face with unwashed hands.
  • Use a tissue when you cough or sneeze and throw it in a garbage bin lined with a plastic bag.
  • If you don’t have a tissue, sneeze or cough into your sleeve.
  • Wash your hands immediately after coughing and/or sneezing.
  • Stay home if you’re sick.
  • Clean and disinfect surfaces that are shared and used often.

Anyone in the St. Stephen’s community who has recently traveled, or who otherwise meets the criteria for self-isolation as laid out by Alberta Health, must not come to the St. Stephen’s College campus until they have completed the recommended period of self-isolation.

If you suspect you have COVID-19: (1) self-isolate immediately, (2) do not go to a hospital, physician’s office, lab, clinic, or healthcare facility, (3) complete the online AHS COVID-19 Self-Assessment tool, and (4) contact Health Link (811).  If you need immediate medical attention, call 911 and advise them that you may have COVID-19.

As always, up to date and reliable information about COVID-19 can be found at the following websites:
     -      University of Alberta COVID-19 Information Page
     -      Alberta Health Services COVID-19 Information Page
     -      Alberta Government’s COVID-19 Information Page
     -      Global Affairs Canada: Travel Advisories
     -      Public Health Agency of Canada
     -      World Health Organization

I will continue to be in touch with the St. Stephen’s College community as this matter unfolds, and as further recommendations or requirements arise.  

Warm regards,
Fred Tappenden, Principal and Dean
St. Stephen’s College, at the University of Alberta



Previous Update: Update 2

To the Faculty, Staff, Students, and Broader Community of St. Stephen’s College
March 16, 2020, 12:15pm

St. Stephen’s College continues to work closely with the University of Alberta to coordinate the response of our two institutions to COVID-19.  At present there are 56 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Alberta.  As the complexity and seriousness of this situation continues to increase, the top priority of St. Stephen’s College is the safety and wellbeing of our staff, faculty, students, and the broader SSC family.  By each doing our part we help to minimize the spread of COVID-19.

Effective Monday, March 16, all St. Stephen’s College courses (credited and non-credited) will be delivered online.  All University of Alberta courses taught at St. Stephen’s College (CHRTP courses) also will transition to online delivery as of Tuesday, March 17.  The St. Stephen’s College campus remains open, with the staff and faculty maintaining the operations of the College.  Though the everyday business of the College continues, we are asking that College interactions be moved online as much as possible (e.g., meetings, student supervision, etc.).  All persons on the St. Stephen’s campus are required to follow preventative recommendations as currently outlined by Alberta Health, including things like adequate social distancing (= no less than 2m between individuals), regular hand washing, use of hand sanitizer, and the like.  Anyone who meets the criteria for self-isolation as laid out by Alberta Health must not come to the St. Stephen’s College campus until they have completed the recommended period of isolation.

To St. Stephen’s faculty and students who have courses scheduled throughout the Spring and Summer, your Department Chair(s) will be in touch with you over the coming days and weeks with more information about this transition to online delivery.  

If you are uncertain or have questions about any of these directives, please reach out to the College. We are happy to discuss these with you.  

As always, up to date and reliable information about COVID-19 can be found at the following links:
      -     University of Alberta COVID-19 Information Page
      -     Alberta Health Services COVID-19 Information Page
      -     Alberta Government’s COVID-19 Information Page
      -     Global Affairs Canada: Travel Advisories
      -     Public Health Agency of Canada
      -     World Health Organization

I will continue to be in touch with the St. Stephen’s College community as this matter unfolds, and as further recommendations or requirements arise.  

Warm regards,
Fred Tappenden, Principal and Dean
St. Stephen’s College, at the University of Alberta

 


Previous Update: Update 1

To the Faculty, Staff, Students, and Broader Community of St. Stephen’s College
March 12, 2020, 2:45pm

As you all know, the world is abuzz with the COVID-19 virus.  The last 24 hours have seen things move quite rapidly.  Yesterday, the World Health Organization officially categorized this as a pandemic.  At present there are 19 confirmed cases in Alberta.  Though the threat level in Alberta remains “low”, the seriousness of this matter is increasing (at times by the hour, it seems).  I am writing to express what St. Stephen’s is doing in the midst of this.

St. Stephen’s takes this matter seriously, recognizing that though our College is small our reach and impact is both national and global.  Regularly we welcome to our campus students from across Canada and around the world to take courses.  At the same time, we are in the process of admitting new students to our programs, some of whom come from international locations that have been affected by this pandemic.  Given how tangible this situation is for St. Stephen’s, our top priorities are to work for the safety and wellbeing of the St. Stephen’s community and to do what we can to be responsible citizens in not contributing to the spread of COVID-19.  

St. Stephen’s will work closely with the University of Alberta, our closest neighbour and educational partner, to have a coordinated effort in addressing COVID-19.  Today I opened conversation with Andrew Sharman, the UofA VP of Facilities and Operations, who is coordinating the University response to COVID-19.  The University is maintaining a COVID-19 Information Page, where recommendations and directives are published.  Earlier this week, the University issued a directive that (a) suspended all travel outside Alberta (while conducting University business) for all University students and employees, and (b) that all visitors to the University campus must take all reasonable precautions before stepping foot on campus (esp. if they come from high-risk COVID-19 areas). The precautions in some cases include self-isolating for 14 days. 

Directives to St. Stephen’s College Faculty, Staff, and Students:
Effective today, and until further notice, St. Stephen’s is issuing a travel directive that all St. Stephen’s Faculty, Staff, and Students suspend travel outside Alberta while conducting St. Stephen’s College business.  Students planning to travel from outside Alberta to visit campus (e.g., to take a course) are directed not to come to campus if they (a) have reason to believe they are at risk of having contracted COVID-19, and/or (b) have not been able to take the appropriate steps of self-isolation for 14 days after having travelled to locations designated by Global Affairs Canada as “Level 3” and “Level 4”.  If a student either cannot or wishes not to attend campus for courses, we will work with our instructors to open possibilities for online class participation.  We are not at the point of moving all course instruction online, but that is a possibility that is being discussed.

For those who are local in Edmonton and plan to visit the St. Stephen’s College campus, we ask that you take all reasonable precautions and common-sense steps to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19.  This includes things like washing/sanitizing your hands regularly, avoid touching your face, and staying home if you are feeling sick.  Anyone who believes themselves to be at risk of having contracted COVID-19, or who have not been able to take the appropriate steps of self-isolation for 14 days after having travelled to high-risk “Level 3” and “Level 4” areas (as defined by Global Affairs Canada), are directed not to come to campus.  

Members of the St. Stephen’s community—either faculty, staff, or students—are not expected to travel for St. Stephen’s related matters if they are not comfortable doing so.  If you are uncertain or require advice about any of these directives, please reach out to the College. We are happy to discuss these with you.  

For up to date and reliable information about COVID-19, please monitor the following links:
      -     University of Alberta COVID-19 Information Page
      -     Alberta Health Services COVID-19 Information Page
      -     Alberta Government’s COVID-19 Information Page
      -     Global Affairs Canada: Travel Advisories
      -     Public Health Agency of Canada
      -     World Health Organization

I will continue to be in touch with the St. Stephen’s College community as this matter unfolds, and as further recommendations or requirements arise.  

Warm regards,
Fred Tappenden, Principal and Dean
St. Stephen’s College, at the University of Alberta