An update on our upcoming winter term
I hope all of our students, faculty and staff are adjusting well to the beginning of this fall semester. I know that for most of us this means learning and working remotely, and for some of you this is still a very new and challenging experience. Thank you all for your patience and flexibility and for embracing the new challenges and new opportunities that come with facing a global pandemic.
Winter 2021 semester will be largely offered remotely
While an eventual return to campus is something the university continues to actively plan for, our upcoming winter 2021 semester will largely remain unchanged. The majority of course offerings will be offered virtually, with in-person, on campus activities as permitted by government guidelines.
For certain academic programs small, in-person group activities will continue to be offered, as necessitated by course requirements, in keeping with safety guidelines provided by our government and public health agencies.
As next semester will be the final semester for some of our students, the university will pay particular attention to providing safe access to campus for labs and other physical resources, needed by these students in order to fulfil their requirements to graduate.
For specific information about the status of your academic programs and courses, labs, capstone projects and other on-campus offerings, please get in touch with your department.
For our staff and faculty, unless your position requires you to attend campus as part of your duties, work from home continues. The university continues to monitor the situation in Toronto, including the new gathering limits announced by Premier Ford on September 17, and will keep employees informed of any changes to our current model.
I understand that for many of you, this may be disappointing news. A return to campus is something we all look forward to, but we all must play our part in protecting our collective health and well-being. A continued remote learning environment will limit the spread of COVID-19, and I thank all of you for your commitment to this current way of living and learning.
In person and virtual supports and resources available
While we are largely maintaining a remote learning environment until the end of the winter term, there are many in-person resources that are available to help support you this year:
- The Student Learning Centre is available with reduced capacity for students who require a quiet space to study.
- Study spaces at the Library are available to students who require access to a quiet, safe place to study. In-person research appointments at the library are also available for researchers who require access to specialized equipment, technology and collections.
- SRC activity continues in identified research labs.
- The Mattamy Athletic Centre is open with specific health and safety rules in place; Ryerson students will be given priority access to facilities in support of their mental and physical well-being.
A wide range of virtual supports continue to be available, including mental and physical well-being resources, academic supports and other university services.
As we look ahead at this academic year, the university continues to follow directives from the provincial and federal governments, local health agencies, and the province’s reopening framework. We are also in close, regular contact with our government partners as the situation in our city and province evolves.
Take care of yourself and others
We understand that these are difficult and often trying times. I know that many of us are dealing with multiple challenges above and beyond working remotely or studying at home. I want to remind our entire community that the following resources are available should you need them:
Students can learn more about services available to them at the Ryerson Centre for Student Development and Counselling.
I would also like to take this opportunity to remind our community that we must remain vigilant in following public health guidelines. Please continue to exercise precaution and self-discipline in the way you connect and gather with one another.
If you are coming to campus, please remember that social distancing requirements are in effect and that a mask is required. You can learn more about the university’s mask policy here.
As always, thanks to all of you for your strength, resilience and commitment to your work and education. I hope you continue to take comfort in and find support in one another in the months ahead.
President and Vice-Chancellor