Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Last updated July 9, 2021


UPEI's Response to COVID-19

Plan for Fall 2021

The University of Prince Edward Island is actively preparing to safely welcome students, faculty, and staff back to campus this fall. Although COVID-19 has changed aspects of how we teach and learn, UPEI remains committed to providing high quality education, as well as access to engaging and rewarding learning experiences in a safe and responsible manner. 

We will continue to base our delivery framework and campus operations on guidance from the PEI Chief Public Health Office (PEI-CPHO), but we know that our plans may need to change depending on evolving public health conditions and requirements. The recent launch of the PEI-CPHO’s “Moving Forward in 2021” plan has confirmed our current plan to return to primarily in-person classroom learning and campus life, with online components, for the fall of 2021. We will post updates to this page as soon as they become available.

Perhaps the single most crucial step each one of us can take to increase the chance of a successful return to an “in-person UPEI” is to get vaccinated. If you are on PEI, everyone aged 12 and over is eligible to receive a first dose. To learn more, visit the Government of Prince Edward Island COVID-19 vaccination website. For those of you who look forward to coming or returning to PEI in the fall, please get vaccinated as the opportunity presents itself.

Pre-Travel Requirements for Students Arriving/Returning to PEI


IMPORTANT! 

The Government of Canada requires that all air passengers five years of age or older test negative for COVID-19 before travelling from another country to Canada. Airlines will ask post-secondary students to provide proof of a negative test result. Please refer to the Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada website for more information. 


Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, restrictions that limit travel to Canada and Prince Edward Island are in place. Incoming first-year, as well as returning students, who are arriving from outside the province and/or out of the country will need to follow public health guidelines in order to enter PEI. All students planning to travel or return to PEI to attend UPEI for the 2021 Fall Academic Semester should review the "Apply to Enter PEI as a Student" web page on the Government of Prince Edward Island website.

If you are a new incoming student travelling to PEI or a current student returning to PEI for the 2021 Fall  Academic Semester, please Request a Pre-Travel Enrolment Confirmation

International students are encouraged to continue to seek the most up-to-date information about visas/study permits from Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada (IRCC). The International Student Office will provide regular updates from IRCC in relation to studying at UPEI and will support students as they plan to return to Canada. 

If you are a student currently living on PEI and decide to travel off-Island at any time, you will be subject to PEI public health regulations upon your return.

Please note it is the responsibility of students and their families to keep informed of any changes in travel and self-isolation requirements. Students are encouraged to check federal and provincial travel requirements often, as they could change without notice. Parents/guardians travelling with students must also follow all federal and provincial travel regulations. 

Visit our Program Delivery by Faculty page to view a summary of how each Faculty is managing program delivery and for contact information.

Resources for Students

As you prepare for the start of classes, whether you are physically in Prince Edward Island or in locations around the world, studying in-person or joining us virtually, here is some helpful information to get your semester off to a great start.

  1. UPEI uses Moodle as its online learning system. Your professors will be posting course outlines and materials here, so be sure to log on. The Welcome to Moodle page has information and a video to help get you started on Moodle. When you first log on, if you are a student that has a requirement to be on campus, we’ll ask for your contact information to facilitate contact tracing in the event of a COVID-19 outbreak.
     
  2. If you have a question about registration, your student account, or any general questions about UPEI, email studentsupport@upei.ca and your question will be forwarded to the appropriate area.
     
  3. If you are a first-year student and are looking for academic advising and course selection, contact the First-Year Advisement team. They'll be happy to assist you. 
     
  4. If you are a returning student looking for academic advising and help with course selection, you can speak with our UPEI Student Affairs team. Please email studentserv@upei.ca to make an appointment. We are meeting with students in person, online, or by phone.
     
  5. Whether you are starting at UPEI or resuming your studies, the Learning 2020 website has been developed to help you meet your academic goals this year. Take some time to review the different tips and strategies and help set yourself up to start strong this semester. 
     
  6. Students with documented disabilities can register with Accessibility Services. Please contact us at 902-566-0488 to arrange for an appointment with one of our accessibility case managers. 
     
  7. If you are on-campus attending face-to-face classes and/or labs, or visiting campus to study or meet, familiarize yourself with the following:

Admissions / Registration 

UPEI's Recruitment, First-Year Advisement, and Admissions teams always gladly accept applications. If you have questions about applying or have been accepted already and would like to register, please contact apply@upei.ca for more information, or visit upei.ca/apply.

Research at UPEI

Research is a vital part of UPEI. As an institution of learning and discovery, we are committed to research and innovation, and providing positive impacts for our communities.

The COVID-19 pandemic has created unprecedented challenges for all of society, including higher learning. The University began a partial return to campus on May 25, 2020, the starting date of UPEI’s Operational Ease-Back Plan. UPEI’s plan follows the guidance of the PEI Chief Public Health Office and features measures unique to our institution as well as outlining—over three stages—a graduated return to some activities, including research and graduate studies.

For more information, refer to Stage Three of UPEI's Operational Ease-Back Plan and the FAQs regarding research and graduate studies at UPEI. Further questions can be directed to your respective Dean, Dean of Graduate Studies and Research, and the Health, Safety, and Environment Department.

Working at UPEI

While UPEI began operating under an essential services delivery model on March 17, 2020, University employees began the gradual return to working on campus on May 25, 2020, the starting date for Stage One of UPEI's Operational Ease-Back Plan

During Stage Two, which began on June 15, 2020, more employees were on campus. Employees who have an individual office space were allowed to work on campus. Individuals who share a workspace could work on campus if physical distancing was maintained. Supervisors employed tactics such as scheduling shifts (one day on campus, one day off or half-day on campus, half day working from home), if necessary, in order to reduce overall numbers on floors, in buildings, and on campus at any one time. Individuals can continue to work from home if approved by their supervisors.

UPEI’s Stage Three reflected the final stage in expanding the gradual return to working, teaching, learning, and conducting research on campus. The focus of this stage was to prepare for the Fall 2020 Academic Semester. Major changes for Stage Three included: strongly recommending the wearing of masks while in buildings (now updated to a mandatory protocol); unlocking campus buildings from 8 am to 5 pm; broadening the scope of who was able to be on campus; and resuming UPEI-organized events, upon approval by the Vice-President Administration and Finance.

The University will continue to introduce additional measures, when necessary, to ensure the health and safety of those on campus.

Human Resources has developed a FAQ for employees, which is available on my.upei.ca 

Campus Operations

While public health guidance has evolved on PEI since Stage Three of  UPEI's Operational Ease-Back Plan went into effect on August 2, 2020, there are a number of restrictions still in place. General administration operating hours for the UPEI campus is 8 am–5 pm; however, please check with particular offices/departments as some services and hours may vary.

Visit the Robertson Library's website to learn more about services, resources, operating hours and booking procedures, and any updates. 

For information about booking or using UPEI Athletics and Recreation facilities or participating in programming, visit booking information and guidelines 

In line with physical distancing guidelines from the PEI Chief Public Health Office, we advise that people avoid gatherings where a two-metre distance is not possible. To help mitigate the spread of COVID-19, UPEI has enhanced cleaning procedures and increased the frequency of cleaning in high-traffic areas.

Effective 12 noon on Friday, July 9, 2021, the PEI Chief Public Health Office (PEI-CPHO) lifted the mandatory requirement to wear masks in indoor public spaces in the province. Read the latest PEI-CPHO guidance  UPEI also updated its guidance on mask wearing, moving from a mandatory measure back to a strong recommendation, to align with the PEI-CPHO guidance:

UPEI strongly recommends that a non-medical mask be worn in UPEI campus buildings when a physical distance of two metres/six feet (2m/6ft) cannot be maintained.

Events

UPEI-organized events resumed during Stage Three of UPEI's Operational Ease-Back Plan, subject to approval by the Office of the Vice-President Administration and Finance (to learn more about the approval process, read the "Events" section on the Stage Three webpage). There continues to be no use of UPEI facilities by external groups or organizations for events, meetings, and/or gatherings, with the exception of outdoor sport events. 

University-Related Travel 

All University-related travel outside the province is suspended for UPEI students, faculty, and staff until further notice.

Because of the evolving nature of the COVID-19 situation, the University is strongly advising student, faculty, and staff to monitor Government of Canada travel health notices before undertaking any personal travel. In keeping with federal and provincial health authorities’ recommendations, anyone who travels outside of PEI and/or Canada (including the United States) must self-isolate for 14 days upon return.

The Government of Canada requires that all air passengers five years of age or older test negative for COVID-19 before travelling from another country to Canada. Please refer to the Immigration, Refugees, and Citizenship Canada website for more information. 

Faculty and staff with questions about emergency medical travel insurance should contact Human Resources at employeeservices@upei.ca

COVID-19 Information

UPEI recommends that you seek information from official government sources as they are continually updating their websites:

We encourage you take the same general health precautions for COVID-19 as you would for influenza. The best defence against any type of flu is following routine prevention measures:

  • wash your hands frequently with soap and water and use hand sanitizer when needed,
  • cough or sneeze into your elbow or a tissue,
  • if you have a severe cold or the flu, stay home, and
  • avoid contact with people who are sick.

Anyone who feels unwell, thinks they may have been exposed to COVID-19, and/or has developed COVID-19 symptoms should call 8-1-1.

Outbreaks

UPEI will take direction from the PEI Chief Public Health Office on the management of a potential outbreak of COVID-19. Please refer to the UPEI COVID-19 Pandemic Outbreak Plan for more information.

Reach Out For Support

We recognize how this situation may be stressful. UPEI has a number of supports for students through UPEI Student Affairs, including personal counselling (studentserv@upei.ca), Accessibility Services (studentserv@upei.ca), and the International Student Office (irostu@upei.ca). UPEI faculty and staff can access the Employee Assistance Program at 1-800-387-4765. We encourage you to reach out if you have concerns.

University Updates/Messages

We are actively working with the PEI Chief Public Health Office and other networks to keep the UPEI community updated about risks and health and safety guidance associated with COVID-19. Read previous messages:

 

Questions? For more information, contact:

1-800-606-8734, or
902-566-0318