Important Update on Mohawk College’s plans for the Fall 2021 semester
The following memorandum was sent to employees and students on Wednesday, March 31
As we come to the end of what has been a challenging year for everyone, I am happy to be able to share with you some good news about Mohawk College’s Fall 2021 semester.
After closely watching the situation with COVID-19 in Hamilton and across the province these past few weeks, and taking into consideration the planned pace of vaccine rollouts and the likelihood that public health measures will become more relaxed as the year progresses, we are confident that we will be bringing more students and employees back to campus for classes and labs, and other on-campus activities this September.
After such a long time apart, we are very much looking forward to seeing many more students, faculty and staff back on campus this Fall. We are aware that this message is coming to you after Hamilton re-entered Lockdown on Monday. It is important to keep in mind that our Fall 2021 plans are not based on where we are today but where we think we will be come September. As we have learned throughout this pandemic, the situation can change on short notice. Our plans are flexible and we will be ready to adapt to any changes that may come along the way.
The health and safety of students and employees remain our top priority and will continue to be the key guiding factor in our decision-making. Mohawk College was among the first to welcome students back to campus in July 2020, and we have safely and successfully continued to have students on campus for required in-person learning throughout the Fall 2020 and Winter 2021 semesters. Any courses, training or activities that take place on campus will continue to fully comply with all government regulations and public health measures.
Details on Fall 2021 program delivery will be posted to the Program Delivery webpage as soon as the information becomes available.
Virtual and remote learning
We have heard from students and employees that the mix of virtual and remote learning, in-person delivery and online service the college has been providing since the pandemic began has allowed a degree of flexibility that did not previously exist. Our faculty and staff have worked hard to develop new techniques and adopt new technologies that have enhanced the experience for our students over the past 12 months. The lessons we have learned will guide our decisions as we consider the current and future needs of our students and the communities we serve.
In-person services and supports
As we plan to bring more people back to campus, the college will also need to bring back more on-campus services to support a higher level of activity on campus. The college is developing a process to determine which services and supports will be necessary and the timing of when those services will become available.
Bringing employees back to campus
To support an increase in activity in the Fall, the college will begin to gradually bring some employees, who are currently working remotely, back to campus. At this time, only those employees who are required to support the increased activity on campus will be returning for September. Employees who are not required to be on campus will continue to work remotely. Just as the transition to working remotely was a big change, we recognize that returning to campus will be a significant change as well. We understand that employees will need time to re-adjust and these decisions will not be rushed. Any employee who will be required to return to campus will be notified well in advance of the anticipated return date to ensure they have enough time to plan accordingly and have the supports they need to make a smooth transition. Our HR team is planning a thorough return-to-work framework that will involve discussions between managers and employees at the department level. This framework will be shared with all employees in the coming weeks.
Mohawk College encourages students and employees to take advantage of the COVID-19 vaccines that are being made available through local health units. At this time, there is no requirement to be vaccinated prior to coming to campus. Any decision regarding mandatory vaccination would be made by the province. You can find details about Hamilton’s vaccine distribution plan, including which groups are currently eligible to receive the vaccine, here: https://www.hamilton.ca/coronavirus/covid-19-vaccines.
Non-academic activities and events
The college is extending the cancellation of all in-person events and facility rentals on and off campus until the end of August 2021. If conditions allow, the college will begin to allow some non-academic activities and events to return to campus beginning in September. The college is developing a framework to determine which activities will be prioritized for a return to campus. More details on this will be available closer to the start of the Fall semester.
Mohawk Summer Camp
Mohawk College is a community college. We know that this year has been a struggle for parents and families in our community. To support increasing demand for child care during the summer months, and if conditions allow, the college will be offering its popular Mohawk Summer Camp this July and August. The camp will follow the province’s COVID-19 Guidance for Summer Day Camps that includes clear and defined health and safety requirements, such as screening, physical distancing and cohorting, personal hygiene, cleaning protocols and face coverings. Camps will be modified and space will be limited to ensure the college adheres to all health and safety requirements. If conditions do not support the opening of Summer Camps, the college will announce that decision before registration opens on May 1.
I want to acknowledge and thank our amazing faculty and staff who have dedicated themselves to ensuring our students continue to receive a quality education and exceptional service these past 12 months.
I also want to acknowledge our extraordinary students and the incredible strength and resilience they have shown since this pandemic began. You inspire us and give us confidence that our future is in good hands.
We look forward to welcoming more students and employees back to campus as we begin to return to a more normal way of learning and working together.
Where to go for more information.
Mohawk is committed to supporting students through these challenging times. Counselling services are available, Monday to Friday.
Students can email: firstname.lastname@example.org or call 905-575-2211.
Employees who require support can access the college’s Employee & Family Assistance Program (EFAP). For instructions on how to register for an EFAP account, please refer to the guide located on the Employee Resource – COVID-19 page on MyMohawk, under the heading Employee and Family Assistance Program.
For current information and updates on Mohawk’s response to COVID-19, visit the Covid Update webpage.
For general questions about admissions, financial aid or registration, please contact us by completing the Ask Mohawk form.
International students who have questions can contact the college by completing the Email International Student Services form.
Thank you for your continued patience and understanding.