FAQ: COVID-19

CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19) AND UBC’S RESPONSE: For updates, FAQs and resources, visit ubc.ca. For UBC Okanagan-specific updates, visit ok.ubc.ca/covid19.

UBC is planning for a return to on-campus activity for Winter Session, Term 1, in September.

Review UBC President Santa Ono’s global message from March 8, 2021.

The School of Engineering would like to reassure the faculty community that the health and wellbeing of our UBC community is of paramount importance as we chart our plans for a full return to campus.

The Province of British Columbia released its “Returning to Post-Secondary: What You Need To Know” that outlines protocols for September 2021.

UBC will require COVID-19 testing for all students, faculty and staff, with exemptions provided for those who are vaccinated against COVID-19. A process for confidential self-disclosure of vaccination status for all those who access our campuses, including students, faculty, staff and visitors will be implemented and communicated shortly.

On August 23, the province announced the proof of vaccination requirement, starting September 13. On that date, an individual who wants to enter any discretionary indoor space will be required to show proof of receiving their vaccination. By October 24, proof of a second vaccination will be required. Information on the events, services, and businesses that require this proof can be found on the Government of BC website.

All faculty, staff, and graduate students must complete the UBC Go Forward COVID-19 Safety Training course prior to returning to campus.

  • A daily self-health assessment is required before attending campus.
  • Stay home if you are sick. Use the Thrive Health self-assessment tool for guidance and follow the advice from Public Health.
  • Everyone must follow relevant signage when moving around UBC campuses or worksites.
  • Masks are recommended in indoor common spaces to ensure the safety of our faculty, staff, and students.

For the latest return to campus information, please visit https://ok.ubc.ca/covid19/

What does this mean for students?

  • Most students will be studying on campus (e.g. in-person classes) in September 2021.
  • The School of Engineering is planning to offer courses primarily in-person, and as such courses offered fully online will be limited.
  • If some students are unable to come to campus for reasons beyond their control, the School of Engineering will do its best to support their degree progress but there is no guarantee that the courses they need will be available online.
  • A set of relevant FAQs that include information about housing, health and well-being and other services is available at ubc.ca/information-for-students.

For the most up-to-date information from the university about our return to campus, please continue to visit covid19.ubc.ca.

Student and parent inquiries or concerns can be directed to  avps.ok@ubc.ca .

UBC Okanagan has expanded its online resources for students. To review student support services, visit students.ok.ubc.ca/support. For information related to international students including a comprehensive immigration and health insurance FAQ visit students.ok.ubc.ca/international. 

As a community we need to continue to uphold our individual responsibility to work together to navigate our safe return to on-campus activity – from maintaining health and safety practices to exercising kindness and empathy for each other.

Mandatory Masks:

  • The Provincial Health Officer has issued new province-wide mandatory mask requirements for all indoor public areas effective August 25, 2021 including shopping centres, coffee shops, retail and grocery stores, pubs, and public transportation.
  • To support the full return to in-person education, research and on-campus services for B.C.’s post-secondary institutions, the new mask order will apply to all indoor public areas on post-secondary campuses including classrooms, labs, lobbies, hallways, stairwells, and elevators.
  • Further details will be available in the Provincial Health Officer Order currently under development, including mask exemption provisions.
  • Local health authorities are working closely with post-secondary institutions to provide access to the COVID-19 vaccine for all students, faculty and staff.

Are the School of Engineering offices physically open?

  • Offices are closed, with limited personnel on campus.  However, services are continuing as usual.
  • If you need assistance from the School’s administrative team please email the person directly or use the general email (engineering.administration@ubc.ca).

How can I access an Academic Advisor, Co-op Coordinator, or a member of the Administrative teams?

  • The School of Engineering Academic Advising, Engineering Co-op (Co-op), and Administrative teams are working remotely, following UBC guidelines for physical distancing measures due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • No in-person appointments or meetings will be available during this time, but all services are continuing as usual.
  • Visit SOE Academic Advising for FAQ or contact information.
  • Email an Advisor at soe.advising@ubc.ca
  • Book an online appointment through the appointment portal
  • Contact your co-op coordinator via email – UBC Co-op Website
  • Okanagan Co-op coordinators Jennifer Eberle and Sarah Nhan

What are the hours of operations that I can expect to hear from staff?

  • Our regular hours of operations are Monday to Friday from 8:30am-4:30pm.

Where can I find mental health support or resources?

How do I access emergency financial support?

Are there protocols for being on campus?

  • Prior to coming to campus, please complete the BC self-assessment tool that provides up-to-date guidance and recommendations for testing and follow-up at https://bc.thrive.health/
  • Anyone experiencing symptoms should follow the guidance provided in the self-assessment tool
  • As a result of a Public Health Order, effective August 25, 2021, non-medical masks are required for all indoor public areas at UBC Vancouver and UBC Okanagan, including lobbies, hallways, stairwells, elevators, classrooms and labs. The Order also applies to anyone taking public transportation, in a taxi or ride-sharing vehicle. You can view the announcement here. There is also an additional announcement specific to post secondary institutions.
  • On August 6, Interior Health (IH) expanded the health measures for the Central Okanagan first announced July 28. Unless otherwise noted, these restrictions come into effect August 6, and are in place until further notice.
  • There is a regional mandatory mask order for all public indoor spaces
  • Indoor organized gatherings are limited to no more than 50 attendees and require a Safe Event Plan
  • Outdoor organized gatherings are limited to no more than 50 attendees and require a Safe Event Plan

Are there still special protocols for graduate students and researchers?

  • As part of UBC’s resumption plans, graduate students and researchers may once again work on campus.
  • Learn more about resumption activities at https://ok.ubc.ca/covid19/

As an international student what plans should I make for September?

  • We recommend students verify program adjustments with their academic advisors.
  • If you are a student arriving from outside Canada, and you are not able to self-isolate in your own accommodation, UBC Student Housing is now offering complementary on-campus self-isolation packages (14 days accommodation and meals), subject to availability. UBC Conferences and Accommodation (C&A) is also offering a variety of fee-based self-isolation accommodation packages to those who need to self-isolate upon arrival in Canada. These packages include a number of on-campus accommodation options operated by C&A, plus off-campus accommodation in partnership with local hotels. For more information about self-isolation accommodation packages, including how to apply, please visit: UBC Okanagan self-isolation accommodation packages

What about events or workshops that have been scheduled?

  • Consult with your instructor or the event/workshop organizer for details

Where can I get additional information about UBC’s response to COVID-19? 

The School of Engineering held a special Undergraduate Town Hall on April 9, 2020.

Click here to watch the recording

The School of Engineering held a special Graduate Studies Town Hall on May 28, 2020.

Click here to watch the recording