Monday 20 April

This message is sent to all students on behalf of Vice-Chancellor Professor Grant Guilford.

As most of you will have heard, New Zealand will be moving from alert level 4 to alert level 3 from Tuesday 28 April and will stay at alert level 3 for at least two weeks. The government will be considering the alert level again on Monday 11 May.

Now that we have some clarity about the period ahead, we are able to finalise exactly what the change to alert level 3 means for our University. We will be getting that detail on our website as soon as possible and will also provide information in Whītiki, our weekly student newsletter, which will be emailed to you this Thursday.

Overall however, the changes to how we have been operating at alert level 4 will be modest. Most of our buildings will remain closed and we will be keeping to our plan of delivering the majority of our teaching online for the rest of Trimester 1. Student services will also continue to be delivered remotely for the rest of Trimester 1.

Below is a summary of some of the things we can expect to see under alert level 3:

  • Most students and staff will continue to study and work from home.
  • A few of our buildings are likely to be open to allow for essential activities but most will remain closed.
  • Limited access to laboratories and specialist research spaces for postgraduate students. This access will not be available until we have been able to make arrangements for recording who is using the facilities and ensuring physical distancing.
  • Limited access to study spaces in the Library for students who do not have suitable study spaces in their bubble.
  • A system for ordering resources from the Library.
  • A system for recording the presence and movements of anyone coming on to our campuses in case we later need to do contact tracing.
  • No one who is unwell should come to the University in any circumstances and no students over 70 or those with underlying health conditions should come to the University.

On another note, our Reorientation Day is taking place this Friday 24 April, giving you an opportunity to connect with our student services teams, clubs and communities and take part in some fun activities. You can find information on our website—check the site during the week, and keep an eye on our social media channels, as we will be updating the information regularly.

I know the last three and a half weeks have not been easy and that we have some way to go before there is more normality in our lives. Thank you for your patience and your effort as we continue to stay safe, stay strong and stay home.

Kia kaha.

Grant