The Mona campus of The University of the West Indies (UWI) advised students today that with the exception of programmes with clinical or specialised laboratory components, all its courses will be offered online for the first semester of the new school year.
The university said the decision was taken given the recent developments of COVID-19 locally which called for a reassessment and careful risk assessment of previous decisions made.
“International and regional students are therefore encouraged not to attempt to attend the campus but to engage their courses in the online/remote mode being provided and make contact with the Office of Students Services who will provide information on the arrangements especially where room allocations had been completed. We apologise for this inconvenience but the risks associated with the operation of a high density resident hall facility are even more significant under the potential COVID-19 scenarios,” the university said in the letter.
The university had previously informed students that for the first semester of the academic year scheduled to begin September 7, 70 per cent of courses would be offered online, and the remaining 30 per cent face-to-face.
But today, it explained that: “The health, safety and well-being of our students and staff is our highest priority”.
The UWI also announced that students will benefit from a reduction in miscellaneous fees as well as an extension in the registration period given the changes in operational mode due to the novel coronavirus pandemic.
“COVID-19 has certainly taught us that agility is important in successfully navigating the pandemic, as the situation is constantly changing. We thank our returning students, who adapted with us last semester, and have taken note of the challenges encountered. We have worked to address those challenges and hope to offer some improvements in Semester 1 as we engage in the online/remote mode of learning,” the university said.