Tim Rahilly message to campus community

Posted June 1, 2020


Hi everyone, it’s Tim here. I hope you’re doing well.

If you’re like me, you’re trying to stay on top of the latest recommendations from the Chief Medical Officer and paying attention to the relaunch strategy for the province. In light of that, I wanted to circle back with all of you and talk about our delivery of instruction in the fall of 2020.

I previously indicated we had the planning assumption of being alternative delivery for the fall. I think enough has transpired at this point that we can call it. We can say that we are going to be alternative delivery for the fall of 2020.

There will be some exceptions to this where required. I think all of you are aware that we have some courses that are required for professional accreditation or there’s other limitations that will require some form of modified face to face instruction, where it’s viable and we can be assured that we can deliver it. We’re going to continue to work on identifying those courses that meet those criteria.

We have committed that by June 15 we’ll be able to say which of those courses will be delivered on campus in some form. Please stay tuned on that. I’m hoping that these planning assumptions will help all of you make sure that we have the very best instruction that we can possibly have for the fall of 2020, and that MRU continues to reach its commitment for an outstanding undergraduate education.

With respect to campus services we will continue to follow the advice of the Chief Medical Officer. We’re hoping there may be a point at which we can pivot and look at those services and we will continue to monitor that very closely.

I know that our instructors are very committed to MRU and to our face to face delivery and that continues to be a really important value for all of us. So we’ll continue to monitor the situation with respect to services but make planning assumptions as I’ve indicated.

In terms of going forward, I do want to make sure that all of you have a sense of how grateful I am to all of you for the work that you are doing. In past videos I’ve done a few shout outs and some of you have been kind enough to email me with suggestions - and please do email me with suggestions. I’ve had a few suggestions of individuals that I should do shout outs for and I have no doubt that those are outstanding individuals. I also know we have so many great people at MRU that if I get into the individual shout outs I’ll spend my days and nights recording videos of gratitude and I do have a day job.

What I will do today is give a shout out to two outstanding areas of the university. The first is ADC, the Academic Development Centre. When the pandemic started I had a chance to go over there, spend some time, get shown around and chat with some folks, and I saw the lines. I’m just so grateful to all of you for the work you have done in supporting the quick pivot to alternative delivery. As the email to me would suggest, my gratitude is perhaps secondary to the gratitude of your colleagues. So, thank you so much for everything you do, and everything that you’re going to continue to do.

The other area that I want to give a shout out to is Accessibility Services. I think that’s an area that during the best of times is pushed for time and deadlines, and no doubt the decision for alternative delivery was quite stressful for all involved. Thank you to all of you in Accessibility Services for the work that you are doing and the work that you continue to do, and will do, for the fall. My heart goes out to you and so grateful to all of you.

As I wrap this up, I would say to all of you, I hope you are taking good care of yourself. I know that, like me, you’re really looking forward to having some students back in the classes, alternative delivery or not; that we’re looking forward to welcoming new students to the MRU community and showing them that even if we are physically distanced that we’re a vital campus community.

Take care of yourself and I look forward to chatting with you soon.