Articles by author: Brock University

  • Brock COVID-19 update for Friday, July 17

    Here’s a look at some of the updates to Brock University’s COVID-19 response for Friday, July 17:

    Although parts of Ontario are moving into Stage 3 Friday, Niagara remains in Stage 2 under the provincial government’s recovery plan.

    Following public health guidelines, Brock University is also carefully moving forward with its own multi-stage recovery plan, guided by the key principle of keeping the health, safety and well-being of students, faculty, staff and the community a top priority.

    As the University moves through the recovery process, students, faculty and staff are asked to monitor their Brock email addresses, as well as brocku.ca/coronavirus for the most up-to-date information.

     

    Registration for 2020-21 underway

    Course registration for the Fall and Winter Terms is nearing completion. Just one hour after registration opened for incoming Brock University students in the early hours of Monday, July 13, more than 2,500 students had already finished mapping out their courses for the upcoming academic year.

    Registration continues Monday, July 20 for students heading into their second year, and wraps up Wednesday for any students with fewer than five credits.

    A variety of resources and support, such as details on when and how to register for courses, has been provided by various areas of the Brock community, including the Office of the Registrar, Information Technology Services and University Marketing and Communications to alleviate any barriers students may face during the process.

     

    BU4U/Smart Start available to help first-year students

    Incoming students are being provided with extra support this year. Brock has prepared a new set of online orientation programs to help welcome and support first-year students as they transition to university life, virtually.

    In addition to the online version of the University’s Smart Start summer orientation program, Brock has also launched a set of additional online experiences, known as BU4U, designed to enhance student success and ease the transition to post-secondary learning.

    Over the next few weeks, a member of the BU4U team will contact students via their Brock email to describe how to get started.

     

    Face coverings now mandatory

    As of Wednesday, July 1, Brock is requiring that anyone entering on-campus buildings wear a non-medical face covering if they’re able to.

    Exceptions will be made if:

    • The person is unable to wear the face covering because it would inhibit their breathing for medical reasons.
    • The person cannot safely wear a face covering for any other medical reasons, such as having respiratory disease, cognitive difficulties, or difficulties in hearing or processing information.
    • For religious reasons, the person cannot wear a face covering or cannot wear a face covering in a manner which would properly control the source.
    • The person is a child under the age of two.

    While these face coverings are not required to be worn in single-person offices, they must be worn when maintaining two metres of physical distance is not possible or predictable, such as hallways, elevators, classrooms and restrooms.

    Read the full story in The Brock News.

      

    Student fees reduced for 2020-21

    In recognition of the challenges facing students in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, Brock University along with the Brock University Students’ Union and the Graduate Students’ Association have reduced their ancillary fees for the upcoming year.

    Collectively, these reductions will save students more than $4.2 million in the 2020-21 academic year. The full list of student fee savings can be found on the Student Accounts and Financial Aid webpage.

    Read the full story in The Brock News.

      

    Brock youth camps move online

    Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and following public health guidelines, Brock had to make the difficult decision to cancel its popular summer kids camps.

    However, the Brock Recreation and Brock Sports teams have now launched Camps at Home, an online resource for parents and guardians to access lesson plans and website links for fun camp-related activities.

    Camps at Home does not require any registration or fees, has no maximum capacity and is fully accessible 24/7. The activities for campers cover everything from technology, the arts and science to aquatics, sports and adventure. 

    Read the full story in The Brock News.

     

    How to access Brock campus

    Access to the main Brock campus in St. Catharines remains through one of two entrances: the Rankin Family Pavilion and the Roy and Lois Cairns Health and Bioscience Research Complex.

    Brock is guided by public health and Government of Ontario mandates on reopening, but we are considering ways of providing access to study space and libraries for current students. More information on the availability of all on-campus facilities, including athletics and recreation facilities will be released in the coming weeks.

     

    Morneau Shepell releases new resources for Brock employees

    Brock’s Employee and Family Assistance Program (EFAP) provider, Morneau Shepell, has released new resources focused on adjusting to life post-pandemic.

    Articles on returning to work and school, self-care, talking to your children post-pandemic and ways to help the local community can all be found on Brock’s Employee Wellness website.

    Further resources and information can be found in Morneau Shepell’s COVID-19 toolkit or within their complimentary webinars.

     

    Mental health resources — update for students

    Brock is dedicated to supporting students with mental health resources.

    In-person counselling is currently not available; however, same-day drop-in counselling is still accessible. Email counselling@brocku.ca to be contacted via Microsoft Teams with an appointment time and a counsellor’s name.

    For 24/7 personal counselling phone 833-276-2533 (833-BROCK33).

    From Monday to Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., students can access Student Health Services (SHS) by phoning 905-688-5550 x3243 to leave a message and contact number, or by emailing referralstaff@brocku.ca

    Student Accessibility Services remains available for students and contact information can be found on the SAS website.

    If you have questions about COVID-19 symptoms and need to speak to a Student Health Services nurse, please email COVID19@brocku.ca

    For medical emergencies, students should phone 911.

  • COVID-19 signs installed on campus to help keep Brock community safe

    The COVID-19 safety signs that have become the norm in grocery stores and public areas will now be posted around campus to help keep the Brock University community safe. 

    Floor and wall signs will be distributed throughout Brock to encourage physical distancing, hand washing, hand sanitizing, face covering reminders and encouraging the use of reusable water bottle filling stations, as water fountains will be disabled.

    Read more on The Brock News

  • Researchers may access laboratories July 2 and 3 thanks to collaborative effort

    To the surprise and delight of faculty and staff, Brock announced last week that the University would be closing for an additional two days — Thursday, July 2 and Friday, July 3 ­— to fully enjoy the Canada Day holiday. The two days are considered holidays declared by President Gervan Fearon in addition to the ‘floater’ day already provided to eligible employees.

    However, despite the extended University closure, researchers who have been scheduled for access to their on-campus research spaces on these days are allowed to proceed at their discretion.

    The ability to continue research if desired to do so has been made possible by the generous contributions of staff members at Brock who are stepping in to work through the holidays to support researchers.

    Read more on The Brock News

  • Coming onto campus? Face coverings now required

    As of Wednesday, July 1, Brock University is requiring that anyone entering on-campus buildings wear a non-medical face covering if they’re able to.

    Anyone entering Brock’s main St. Catharines campus through one of the two available entry points, or other Brock campuses, must have a minimum of a fabric mask covering their mouth and nose. Exceptions will be made for those individuals for whom wearing a face covering poses health concern or other issues as described below.

    While these non-medical masks (sometimes referred to as community protective equipment) are not required to be worn in single-person offices, however face coverings must be worn when maintaining two metres of physical distance is not possible or predictable, such as hallways, elevators, classrooms and restrooms.

    Read more on The Brock News

  • Brock committed to experiential education

    Brock University’s 2020 Fall Term might look a little bit different than in past years, but students can rest assured knowing its commitment to being a national leader in experiential education is continuing.

    The University has been proud to offer experiential education in 100 per cent of its programs, and the opportunity for students to engage with work experiences directly related to their degree programs remains.

    The changes due to COVID-19 have impacted some work-integrated learning (WIL) experiences more than others, such as health care, where practicums were affected to protect the health and safety of students, frontline workers and the community.

    Read more on The Brock News

  • Brock Central’s virtual Call Centre now open to students

    Since the University’s operational changes in March due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Brock Central team in the Office of the Registrar has been working remotely, along with the majority of the Brock community.

    Read more on The Brock News

  • Brock extends funding for graduate students

    In recognition of challenges the COVID-19 pandemic may have posed for graduate students striving to complete their studies, Brock University is providing additional Faculty of Graduate Studies fellowship funding for research-based grad students.

    This funding will include the Graduate Fellowship, International Fellowship, International PhD Fellowship, and the Dean of Graduate Studies Excellence Scholarship, as appropriate.

    Master’s students will receive one additional term of their usual FGS fellowship support, while doctoral students will receive two additional terms. In order to receive the additional funding, students will need to remain registered as full time at Brock and will be responsible to pay usual tuition and fees.

    The Faculty of Graduate Studies will apply these fellowships to student accounts as a student reaches the end of their normal funded period and will not graduate in the next term. As usual, students past their funded terms who are on final stage status will not be eligible for this additional fellowship funding.

    Read more on The Brock News

  • Second Brock entrance now open

    After announcing that Brock’s Vice-President, Research Tim Kenyon announced that laboratories across the University would open for a substantially wider range of approved users beginning June 15, a second entrance to the University has now opened. Due to COVID-19 restrictions, the single access point to on-campus buildings had been the Rankin Family Pavilion. However, starting Monday, June 22, the east entrance to the Roy and Lois Cairns Health and Bioscience Research Complex is also now available as an access point. As with the RFP entrance, users will be asked to provide campus identification and answer a few basic screening questions. Through the new Plan for Expanded Access to Research Facilities and Sites During Pandemic, drafted by the Research Access Task Force chaired by Associate Vice-President, Research, Michelle McGinn, approved users will have access to research labs from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday to Friday (excluding University holidays) under certain conditions.

  • An update for Brock University faculty and staff

    As the Government of Ontario continues to take steps to slowly lift COVID-19 restrictions, Brock University is making preparations for its own operations that put the health, safety and wellness of its faculty, staff and students at the highest priority.

    Research Plan

    Brock’s Vice-President, Research Tim Kenyon announced this week that the University’s research labs would open for a wider range of approved users starting on Monday, June 15. The Plan for Expanded Access to Research Facilities and Sites During Pandemic was drafted following input and proposals contributed by more than 400 researchers and graduate students.

    Academic Plan

    Last month, Brock announced plans for the 2020 Fall Term, with the vast majority of courses being offered online. Only a small number of courses will be in-person; primarily upper-year and those with small-sized classes requiring specialized labs or other on-campus equipment.

    Faculty/Staff Health and Well-Being

    Since the early days of the pandemic, an Emergency Management Group consisting of dozens of representatives from across Brock University have been meeting on a weekly and sometimes daily basis.

    Over the past three months, the EMG has been tasked with providing guidance to the University through these unprecedented times — while working within the framework of the regulations set at the regional, provincial and national levels.

    As the province begins to carefully take steps to allow more activities to resume, Brock is also turning to what operations will look like in the recovery phase with a number of sub-committees examining things such as research activities, the academic plan, student experience and general recovery including on-campus operations. Officials with Niagara Region Public Health have joined Brock in weekly meetings to provide input and updated guidance on an ongoing basis.

    Similar to the province’s staged resumption of commercial, social and recreational activities, Brock will take a staged and measured approach to bringing employees back to campus.

    Plans are being finalized to implement health and safety measures that will be in place for the fall for the limited number of students, faculty and staff who may need to be on campus. This includes measures such as community protective equipment (non-medical face coverings), limited campus entry points and restricting the number of people allowed in small areas to follow public health guidelines on physical distancing. For example, a limited residence offering that follows the guidelines established by public health is being considered to provide housing to some students who are required to be on campus or who have extenuating circumstances.

    Convocation

    Today was originally supposed to mark the final day of Brock’s 107th Convocation inside Ian Beddis Gymnasium. Instead, the Class of 2020 will be celebrated in a much different way.

    Spring Convocation will be delivered in a virtual format for the first time. Graduating students will receive an invitation from the Dean of their respective Faculty on Friday, June 19, when the Virtual Spring Convocation portal will go live.

    Rather than a single livestreamed event, Virtual Convocation is an online portal that is personalized for each individual graduating student. Although the portal will launch on June 19, graduands and their friends and families will be able to enjoy their Convocation experience whenever they choose. While the portal will include the official conferring of their degrees by Chancellor Shirley Cheechoo, and video addresses from a number of special guests including former Prime Minister of Canada Paul Martin, it’s not meant to replace an in-person celebration, which will be planned in the future when it’s safe to do so.

    Watch the Brock News for information on how to view the Virtual Convocation portal when it goes live next week.

    Next Steps

    Keeping the Brock community safe while still conducting groundbreaking research and delivering a high-quality education to its students — wherever they might find themselves — remains the focus of the University.

    Information will continue to be communicated to faculty and staff as it becomes available. For more details about plans for the Fall Term, visit brocku.ca/fall and for the latest updates on Brock’s COVID-19 response, including a full FAQ section, please visit brocku.ca/coronavirus

  • An update to students for the Fall 2020 Term

    As the Class of 2024 is preparing to start its first year at Brock University this fall, the Class of 2020 is getting set to celebrate Convocation. It’s a big moment in the lives of both groups of students, and a moment being experienced through the lens of an unprecedented time in history.

    The COVID-19 pandemic continues to have a profound impact on all, and Brock University’s decisions remain focused on making the health, safety and well-being of our students, faculty, staff and wider community the top priority.

    Last month, Brock announced plans for the 2020 Fall Term, with the vast majority of courses being offered online. Only a small number of courses will be in-person; primarily upper-year and those with small-sized classes requiring specialized labs or other on-campus equipment.

    While it may temporarily change the way courses are delivered, the high-quality learning and research environment, along with the University’s student-first focus, remains. Brock’s goal continues to be giving students a safe and excellent academic experience, along with an engaging student experience.

    Read more on The Brock News