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Message from the AVP of Students and Registrar: UPEI suspending in-person classes

| Students
Sustainable design engineering students working on a project

The following message was issued to students on December 6, 2020, by the Office of the Registrar via their emails.

Dear students,

You may have heard that the PEI Chief Public Health Office (PEI-CPHO) announced new restrictions today for Prince Edward Island, and that we have moved from the “new normal” to the “caution” or yellow alert level due to possible community spread of COVID-19.

The safety and security of UPEI students and employees remains the top priority for the University. I encourage you to read the PEI-CPHO guidance and be tested for COVID-19, even if you are not exhibiting any symptoms. If you are asymptomatic, you do not need to self-isolate while you await your test result.  

The UPEI management team met this evening and has determined that the best course of action for the University is to move to an essential services model effective Monday, December 7, 2020 and until Monday, December 21, 2020, where in-person classes and exams are suspended, and where only limited number of employees will remain working on campus.

What does this mean for UPEI students?

  • UPEI will continue to follow public health guidance including limiting gathering size, employing physical distancing (2m/6ft), and wearing masks in indoor public spaces.
  • Teaching and learning will move to virtual/online delivery models. If any essential exams need to be conducted in-person, the Dean will work with the Health, Safety, and Environment Manager to ensure PEI-CPHO guidance can be followed. Instructors will communicate any changes to scheduled exams/evaluations with their students.
  • Faculty, researchers, and graduate and honours students will be able to conduct research on-campus and in the field, if public health guidance can be followed, but they are encouraged to do so from home.
  • UPEI will limit in-person gathering/meeting size to a maximum of 10 people, if such gatherings are necessary and if public health guidance is followed. However, it is encouraged that meetings are held virtually and/or online.
  • Other essential service areas that will continue to provide in-person services include UPEI Residence Services (including Wanda Wyatt Dining Hall); UPEI Athletics and Recreation (for only the Panther Academy After-School Program); and the UPEI Campus Food Bank.
  • The UPEI Chi-Wan Young Sports Centre gymnasium and fitness centre will be closed, and all in-person training for UPEI varsity and club teams will cease.
  • The Robertson Library will be closed for in-person services. 
  • Campus buildings, with the exception of the W.A. Murphy Student Centre, will remain locked. Staff, faculty, researchers, and graduate students are to enter buildings using their Salto proximity card, one at a time, maintaining physically distancing (2m/6ft). 

We recognize how this situation may be stressful for you, especially as we near the holiday season. For those of you choosing to travel over the break, please refer to my earlier message about pre-travel requirements. Please remember that UPEI has a number of supports for students through UPEI Student Affairs, including personal counselling (, Accessibility Services (, and the International Student Office ( We encourage you to reach out for support.

We will continue to work with the PEI-CPHO and inform you of any updates. If you have any questions, please email


Donna Sutton
Associate Vice-President of Students and Registrar

Media Contact

Nicole Phillips
Director of Communications and University Relations
Marketing and Communications

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