May 14, 2020
A message from Dr. Mary Bluechardt, President and Vice-Chancellor
As our Public Health experts begin to share plans for the cautious re-opening of our province, it has become increasingly apparent that organizations will need to practice physical distancing into the fall.
I am writing to advise that Mount Saint Vincent University will shift to online course delivery for the fall 2020 semester.
By making this decision now, we are ensuring that we have the time needed to plan for a quality experience this fall. In the days and weeks ahead, we will continue to engage our faculty, staff and Senate in a fulsome discussion of the implications of this shift.
As well, we will explore what our on-campus operations might look like based on the latest Public Health advice (e.g. residence, library, art gallery, fitness centre, registrar’s office, staff and faculty offices and more), and work with our Research Office to address the needs of our researchers.
We are fortunate at MSVU to be a leader in online education. We have a strong and pioneering history in remote program delivery, dating back almost 40 years. It means we have a really solid online foundation from which to build.
To our new and returning students, remember that the situation we find ourselves in will be short lived, while your MSVU experience will be a long and rich one. The need to be physically distant from one another and avoid gatherings won’t last forever. In the meantime, our Student Experience team is planning some exceptional online orientation and support programs designed to enable your success through this period.
We will also continue conversation about our University’s 2020/2021 budget. This dialogue started much earlier this year, but budget approval was deferred as we sought to focus on our response to the pandemic. Certainly, these are fiscally challenging times across our sector and beyond. We will continue to work with members of our representative University Budget Committee and the Board – and indeed across all facets of our organization on measures like cost containment – to balance the unprecedented financial challenges ahead with the need to ensure continued delivery of the best possible learning experience for our students.
No doubt you have many questions. While we don’t yet have all the answers, we will work to provide more information as soon as possible. Please continue to visit msvu.ca/coronavirus for the latest, and stay tuned to your MSVU email account.
It goes without saying that these are unusual times. And while the road ahead will not be without its challenges, I have no doubt about the power of the MSVU community to make it through.