Skip to main content

UVic COVID-19 planning & response

This impact rating scale provides a snapshot of UVic's response through various stages of the COVID-19 pandemic. It outlines the impacts of each rating level on our operations and services.

The rating scale is a high-level summary of our overall response. It also suggests indicators that may result in a shift from one rating level to another.

Extreme

 

Possible indicators:

  • High and/or growing levels of community transmission
  • Multiple cases locally and on campus
  • No vaccine or treatment
  • PHO: significant limits on gatherings; recommends remote working and learning

Teaching: Instruction and exams fully on-line.

Students: No students on campus or in on-campus student housing

Research  
General on campus No on-campus research (excluding exemptions)
In-person research with human participants (RHP) No in-person RHP on or off campus
Fieldwork/Off campus sites (domestic) No research fieldwork or research in third party sites (excluding exemptions)

Faculty/staff: Employees who can work remotely are working remotely. All other employees report to work on campus for regular or revised assignment.

Visitors: Public access restricted to available grounds. Some trails, gardens closed.

Campus amenities and services: Essential/critical on-campus services (e.g. April 2020 levels).

Meetings, events and programs: No in-person meetings, events or programs.

Travel  
Faculty/staff No university-sanctioned outbound international travel.
Student mobility programs No university-sanctioned outbound international travel and activities. Inbound international student mobility travel is suspended.

International students: No students on campus or in on-campus student housing.

Building access, public areas: Restricted building access, public areas and lunchrooms closed.

Additional governance structures: Consider activation of Emergency Operations Centre and Executive Policy Group.

High

 

Possible indicators:

  • High but sustainable levels of community transmission
  • Multiple cases locally; few or no cases on campus
  • No vaccine or treatment
  • PHO: possible limits on gatherings and class size with safe work plans in place 

Teaching: Predominantly on-line instruction.  Only approved essential in-person teaching.

Students: Limited capacity (below 50%) for single student housing with quarantine and isolation rooms; bookable study spaces reserved for students on campus.

Research  
General on campus Limited on-campus research with exemptions and approved save work plan
In-person research with human participants (RHP) Limited in-person RHP with Human Research Ethics Board (HREB) exemptions
Fieldwork/Off campus sites (domestic) Limited activity with approved Field Research Plan

Faculty/staff: A limited number of employees providing essential and some limited services on campus with safe work plans in place. Remote working in place for many employees.

Visitors: Public access to available grounds and facilities with safety plans in place.

Campus amenities and services: Limited on-campus services with restrictions and safety plans in place.

Meetings, events and programs: Essential internal in-person meetings, events, ceremonies or programs may be approved. Must have a safety plan and limited numbers of participants based on PHO orders.

Travel  
Faculty/staff Only essential university sanctioned outbound international travel in accordance with university policy.
Student mobility programs Only essential university sanctioned outbound international travel and programming in accordance with university policy.

International students: On-campus housing is available to students who are unable to leave. Students arriving in Victoria from an international location required to follow the International Student Safety Plan and Protocol.

Building access, public areas: Restricted building access, public areas and lunchrooms may be closed.

Additional governance structures: Consider activation of coordinating working groups such as the COVID Transition Team and the VPAC COVID Advisory Group.

Moderate

 

Possible indicators:

  • Low levels of community transmission
  • No or few cases locally or on campus
  • Vaccine or treatment options not (fully) available
  • PHO: no limits on gatherings and class size with safe work plans in place

Teaching: In-person teaching with approval and possible restrictions on class sizes.

Students: Limited capacity (above 50%) for single student housing with quarantine and isolation rooms; bookable study and common spaces reserved for students on campus.

Research  
General on campus On-campus research with approved safe work plan
In-person research with human participants (RHP) In-person RHP with approval from HREB
Fieldwork/off campus sites (domestic) Requires approved Field Research Plan

Faculty/staff: A significant number of employees working on campus in most if not all units on campus with safe work plans in place (some remote working in place).

Visitors: Public access to available grounds and facilities with safety plans in place.

Campus amenities and services: Most, if not all on-campus services, with restrictions and safety plans in place.

Meetings, events and programs: Limited approval of in-person meetings, events, ceremonies or programs with restrictions on participant numbers.

Travel  
Faculty/staff Only essential university sanctioned outbound international travel in accordance with university policy.
Student mobility programs Only essential university sanctioned outbound international travel and programming in accordance with university policy.

International students: Students arriving in Victoria from an international location required to follow the International Student Safety Plan and Protocol.

Building access, public areas: Restricted building access, public areas and lunchrooms available with restrictions.

Additional governance structures: Consider activation of coordinating working groups such as the COVID Transition Team and the VPAC COVID Advisory Group.

Low

 

Possible indicators:

  • No community transmission
  • Vaccine or treatment available
  • PHO: no limits on activities

Teaching: In-person teaching without restrictions.

Students: No restrictions

Research: No restrictions

Faculty/staff: No restrictions

Visitors: No restrictions

Campus amenities: On-campus services open without restrictions

Meetings, events and programs: No restrictions

Travel  
Faculty/staff Travel in accordance with university policy.
Student mobility programs Travel and programming in accordance with university policy.

International students: Activities in accordance with university policy and federal/provincial requirements for entry to Canada.

Building access, public areas: Normal building access

Additional governance structures: Normal governance structures

Committees

Last updated: April 29, 2021

Since January 2020, UVic has been planning and responding to the COVID-19 pandemic. Working within the context of the Public Health Officer (PHO) and Ministry of Advanced Education and Skills Training’s guidance to plan for a return to campus activities this fall, our plans for fall course delivery are being developed based on the following COVID-19-related principles:

  • Health and safety – Follow planning directives and guidelines from government and public health officials, including the PHO;
  • Quality – Commit to high-quality academic offerings and services;
  • Equity and access – Offer options for international students who may not be able to be here in September to access education and services in an equitable way;
  • Flexibility – We can pivot to online instruction if we are instructed to do so by the PHO, but we cannot pivot to face-to-face instruction; and
  • Time and clarity – Provide students, faculty and staff with time to plan accordingly, with the final timetable released in late May and additional information shared as needed.

The following groups and committees are actively working on matters related to the pandemic on behalf of the university.

The Transition Team meets weekly and takes the lead on operational issues across the university and generally ensures university planning and response efforts are coordinated. It is co-chaired by the Acting Vice-Provost and the AVP Human Resources and reports to Executive Council.

  • Kane Kilbey, AVP Human Resources (Co-Chair)
  • Susan Lewis, Acting Vice-Provost (Co-Chair)
  • Chandra Beaveridge, Director Strategic Initiatives, VP Finance and Operations
  • Jim Dunsdon, AVP Student Affairs
  • Tony Eder, Executive Director Academic Resource Planning, VP Academic and Provost
  • Melanie Groves, Manager, Communications and Stakeholder Engagement, Communications + Marketing
  • Denise Helm, Executive Director, Communications + Marketing
  • Robert Johns, Manager, Emergency Planning, Campus Security
  • Janice Johnson, Executive Director, Accounting Services
  • Karen Johnston, Associate Director, Public Affairs, Communications + Marketing
  • Andy Mavretic, Director, Occupational Health, Safety and Environment
  • Michele Parkin, AVP Faculty Relations and Academic Administration
  • Ada Saab, Associate University Secretary
  • Rachael Scarth, AVP Research Operations
  • Jennifer Vornbrock, Executive Director, Community and Government Relations

The Advisory Group meets bi-weekly or weekly as needed and directs academic planning and supports. It is chaired by the Acting Vice-Provost and advises the Provost and Deans’ Council.

  • Susan Lewis, Acting Vice-Provost (Chair)
  • Jim Dunsdon, AVP Student Affairs
  • Tony Eder, Executive Director, Academic Resource Planning, VP Academic and Provost
  • Stephan Evans, Acting Dean, Faculty of Graduate Studies
  • Lindsay Gagel, Director of Academic Communications and Projects, VP Academic and Provost
  • Nicole Greengoe, Registrar
  • Robin Hicks, Acting AVP Academic Planning
  • Peter Loock, Dean, Faculty of Science
  • Wency Lum, Chief Information Officer, University Systems
  • Joel Lynn, Executive Director, Student Services
  • Michele Parkin, AVP Faculty Relations and Academic Administration
  • Carolyn Russell, Executive Director, Global Engagement
  • Ada Saab, Associate University Secretary
  • Laurene Sheilds, Executive Director, Learning and Teaching Support and Innovation
  • Robina Thomas, Associate Vice-President Indigenous

Sub-committees and groups

Leaders, faculty and staff across the university continue to respond to the pandemic and the impact that it has in their areas. This work is varied and includes things like supporting Indigenous students, supporting graduate students, resuming on-campus research, classroom and building safety, classroom infrastructure, and on-campus study spaces.

Here are examples of some of the sub-committees and groups that have come together to focus efforts. Many inform or report up to the Transition Team or VPAC COVID-19 Advisory Group.

COVID-19 Case Coordination and Support Team

Chaired by the Manager, Emergency Planning, this team coordinates and provides support for COVID-19 cases on and off campus, including guidance for instructors and leaders and liaising with public health officials.

COVID-19 Logistics Committee

Chaired by the Executive Director, Accounting Services, this committee consults with and supports the logistics of new initiatives and requirements as they evolve from COVID-19 university response plans. Areas include security, facilities, faculty relations, financial services, human resources, health and safety, risk management, and systems.

International Enrolment Recovery Team

Co-chaired by the Executive Director, Global Engagement and the Registrar, this team is developing an international enrolment recovery strategy that will help ensure UVic remains on-track to achieve its international enrolment goals throughout and post-COVID-19.

Remote Work Arrangements Committee

Co-chaired by the AVP Human Resources and Director, Organization Development and Learning Services, this committee is developing principles and tools to guide remote work arrangements for staff post-pandemic.

Student Experience Working Group

Chaired by the AVP Student Affairs, this committee works with student unions across campus to discuss pandemic-related issues that impact the student experience and address student feedback regarding academic and support services as they relate to COVID-19.

Collaborative work and communications

Examples of collaborative work with members outside of the university include facilitating the creation of Island Health testing and vaccination clinics on campus, liaising with government officials and public health officers, and sharing work with other BC universities and colleagues. UVic staff also contribute as part of the Panel of Experts in the development and on-going maintenance of the province’s Go-Forward Guidelines for the post-secondary sector.

Updates to faculty, staff and students are posted on the COVID-19 website and UVic’s social media channels. They are also provided to specific audiences through virtual townhalls and forums. The UVSS and GSS are updated and consulted on student-related items during their regularly scheduled Operational Relations committee meetings and through the Student Experience Working Group.

The role of Senate and the Board of Governors

University Senate plays an important role in academic standards and governance. Senate approves changes to Academic Calendar, including important academic dates, and oversees policies on grading and academic integrity.

In the early days of the pandemic, Senate activated an emergency protocol so that university leaders could respond quickly to the changing needs of faculty, staff and students. This allowed the Vice-President Academic and Provost to provide academic units with guidance and flexibility related to a course’s instructional mode (e.g. online).

Throughout the pandemic, the Office of the Vice-President Academic and Provost has worked with the Office of the Vice-President Finance and Operations to provide budget updates, modelling and strategies to Senate and the Board of Governors for review. The strategies were based on student enrolment and our financial outlook. This collaborative and transparent approach continues to help to mitigate the financial impacts of the pandemic.

Decisions on teaching will usually apply to an entire academic term and may be made months in advance. A reduction in impact scale during an academic term may therefore not lead to any changes in teaching activities on campus.

As per UVic Policy AD 2210, all outbound international travel and programming at all levels will need to follow Government of Canada travel advice and advisories. In addition, upon return to Canada travelers must follow BC Provincial Health guidelines including isolation requirements

This website stores cookies on your computer. These cookies are used to collect information about how you interact with our website and allow us to remember you. We use this information in order to improve and customize your browsing experience and for analytics and metrics about our visitors both on this website and other media. To find out more about the cookies we use, see our Privacy Policy.