UVic Students’ Society asks for better communication from university

UVic Students’ Society asks for better communication from university

The University of Victoria Students’ Society says they want better communication from the university in the future to avoid situations like the last-minute move to online exams earlier this week.

On Dec. 12, UVic announced all exams would be moving online in response to a COVID-19 outbreak among their students.

READ MORE: University of Victoria outbreak has grown to 137 cases, including 15 reports of Omicron

Marran Dodds, director of outreach and university relations for UVSS, says she has heard from students saying they were happy to have online exams, but would have liked more notice

“We were excited to see UVic leading the campaign to put student safety first,” Dodds says. “However, it felt really abrupt, and that’s what we heard from a lot of students. We heard from them and they would say, for example, ‘hey, I have an exam tomorrow morning at 9 a.m. and my prof hasn’t emailed me. What am I supposed to do?’”

In response to this, UVSS has several requests for the university, especially with a new semester fast approaching.

“To ease stress for students, staff, and teaching assistants, we request that UVic have a concrete action plan, accompanied by a communications plan, to proactively manage future outbreaks. UVic community members should be made aware when cases occur and should know what steps the university plans to take to keep them safe,” a statement from UVSS says.

READ MORE: UVic moves some students’ exams online after spike in COVID-19 cases linked to off-campus social gatherings

Dodds says she has been hearing from students that they are concerned about the upcoming semester and hopes UVic lets them know if it will be in person or online before it’s too late.

“A big thing we’re hearing from students is that they’re going home for the holidays and they want to know as soon as possible if school will be online or not,” Dodds says. “They say ‘I don’t want to come all the way back here from where home is just for school to be online and then I have to deal with rent in Victoria when I could be living at home.’”

Dodds says they recognize that the pandemic has put UVic in an unusual position and appreciates all the work that has been done by them, but they would like to see more.

Laura BroughamLaura Brougham

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