To our Community of Brock Graduate Students,
I am writing to assure you that the entire team in the Faculty of Graduate Studies (FGS) is thinking about you and your well-being during these challenging times. Please know that the FGS team is here to help you successfully complete your program. I recognize that some of you may require additional accommodations to achieve this success. With the rapidly evolving situation the FGS team is mindful that flexibility is needed. This email is to provide you with the latest information to assist you as you continue in your program. I will continue to share additional information as it becomes available.
I encourage you to get into the daily habit of visiting the Brock website brocku.ca/coronavirus where you will find all Brock updates on the University’s operational responses to the pandemic.
The topics below address some key issues. However, please reach out to us if there is a question I have not answered.
Diane Dupont, Interim Dean, Faculty of Graduate Studies
Getting Hold of Team Members at FGS
We are here to serve you and are happy to address your concerns via phone, e-mail or videoconferencing. We will continue to provide support from 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Monday to Friday and will respond to all inquiries within 24 hours. During this time documents are encouraged to be submitted via email to our general email addresses. See below for specific contact details.
Immediate Graduate Student support is also available by contacting 289-241-9420.
|Faculty of Graduate Studies Contact Information, March 2020|
(call 905 688 5550, then 1, then extension)
|Diane Dupont||Interim Dean||5346||ddupont|
|Wendy Ward||Associate Dean||wward|
|Stacey Duncan||Executive Assistant to the Dean||5152||sduncan2|
|Kim Kelly||Manager, Graduate Information & Services||4390
|Jaye Dee Cawood||Graduate Officer, Admissions||3549||gradadmissions|
|Kimberly Anderson||Graduate Officer, Student Records||3935||gradregistration|
|Joanna Amodeo||Graduate Officer, Funding & Awards||5207||gradfunding|
|Andie Nero||Graduate Student Support Coordinator||5233
Cell (289) 241-9420
|Lauryn Carrick||Recruitment Coordinator||5197||gradrecruit|
|Lori-Ann Gomez||Graduate Assistant||4960||gradadmissions|
|Cheryl Clarke||Graduate Assistant||3029||gradfunding|
|Catherine Davies||Graduate Assistant||5040||gradrecruit|
|Josie Zhao||Graduate Assistant||3239||gradfunding|
|Stephanie Nichols||Graduate Assistant||4439||gradadmissions|
Other Support Resources on Campus
- Brock’s library will be closing at 5 p.m. Thursday March 19, but online services will continue to be provided.
- The Computer Commons (Fish Bowl) and computer lab in Plaza 310 will remain open for use from 7:30 a.m. to 10 p.m. Monday to Friday and 11 a.m. to 5 p.m. on weekends, but the number of computers available will be reduced to 50 in line with Public Health recommendations. The ITS Help Desk will be hosted in the Computer Commons during those hours.
- The Decew and Lowenberger dining halls remain open Monday to Friday from 8 a.m. to 11 p.m. and weekends from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. The Tim Hortons in Schmon Tower is open Monday to Thursday from 7:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. and Friday from 7:30 to 4:30 p.m.
- Please note that these times are likely to change.
- Student Health Services continues to provide health care but have moved to telephone appointments. Students who want an appointment can call Student Health Services at 905-688-5550 x3243
Courses/Exams – for both Undergraduate and Graduate Students
- Brock has suspended all face-to-face classes, lectures, seminars, tests and exams for the rest of this academic term and also for the Spring and Summer terms.
- The University is working on plans for creating virtual environments for Winter 2020 (Jan-April 2020) courses as the term moves forward with the goal of resuming online/virtual or alternative format courses March 23, 2020. Students will be receiving updates from their instructors over the course of this week.
- The period for final exams (April 2020) exams will remain in place, but none of those exams will be in person. They will all move to virtual, take home, or another format. Instructors are currently making adjustments to their course compositions and will be communicating changes to you.
On Campus Events and Activities
- All on-campus events and activities are cancelled through June 1.
- This cancellation includes the Mapping the New Knowledges Conferences, the 3MT event, the SHIFT event, and all of the Graduate Information Sessions that were scheduled for this week and the next.
- Abstracts submitted to MNK will be included in a conference booklet that we are producing. We will be putting onto our website and sending a digital program booklet to each student presenter. Students will be able to identify this form of knowledge mobilization as a published abstract.
- We are investigating how to provide content from SHIFT to you in an alternative format. We will send out updates.
- The 3MT Provincial Competition has been indefinitely postponed. Brock will wait to make a decision about our 3MT competition until details are confirmed about a new date for the provincials.
Using Lifesize to Stay Connected and to Continue with Program Activities
- To go direct to the site and register: lifesizecloud.com (just enter your Brock e-mail)
- Helpful “How To” Video: https://web.microsoftstream.com/video/6fd1f05a-182f-4290-8d4f-2686dd942b81?list=user&userId=55a4f896-1336-4eae-a030-05c26fda0770
- PhD Candidacy Exams, Comprehensive Exams – We are currently working with programs to provide guidance for how these exams will proceed.
- PhD External Defences – Upcoming PhD Thesis Defences will go ahead remotely, with the student being virtually present. The Faculty of Graduate Studies will be coordinating the logistics of this using Lifesize.
- MA/MSc External Defences – FGS has recommended to the Associate Deans, Graduate Studies and Research for each of the Faculties that they follow the same procedure as is being followed for PhD Defences. That is, remote participation of the student, supervisory committee, and external examiner. Each Faculty Associate Dean will be taking care of their students.
Meetings with Supervisors/Supervisory Committees
- It is highly recommended that students and supervisory committees keep in touch, as much as possible, using either email, phone or a video conferencing app such as Lifesize. All university members can access the program Lifesize. It is free to use and allows us to stay connected through videoconferences.
- Lab groups may also wish to go ahead with their regular weekly or biweekly lab meetings to help maintain the continuity of research and/or to explore current topics of interest to the group. The best option is to do this virtually using a program like Lifesize.
Students in Residences
- International students living in residence who are not able to return home due to travel restrictions or safety concerns can stay in residence, all other students must leave before the residences close on 6 pm, Thursday, March 19, 2020. International students living in residence will receive more information today. Please phone (289) 241-9420 if you have questions/concerns.
- All teaching assistants, marker-graders, lab demonstrators and course co-ordinators holding a current contract will continue to receive full pay. Duties may need to be modified in response to the suspension of in-person classes and exams, in accordance with collective agreement provisions.
- Please speak with your supervisors about expectations around work location and work to be completed.
Post Graduate Work Permits
- A recent communication from IRCC notes the following: “International students in Canada, take note: courses of study being delivered online on an exceptional basis due to #COVID19 will not affect Post-Graduation Work Permit Program eligibility for a post-graduation work permit”. Source (Government of Canada).