Editor’s note: This article was updated on March 13, and then on March 17, to reflect new information
As the number of COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) cases increases around the world, Dalhousie University is taking precautions.
On March 14—one day after announcing the cancellation of in-person classes from March 16-20—Dal confirmed in-person classes, labs and exams will not resume this semester. The same goes for the University of King’s College. According to a post on dal.ca, “Students should expect instruction to resume (via distance) on Monday, March 23.”
Further, although the school and its residences remain open, all students who are able to move out are encouraged to do so by March 22.
“Please be assured that anyone who cannot return home for reasons such as international travel restrictions, serious personal reasons, or university obligations will continue to be provided accommodation,” read the online update.
All “non-essential” university events, including convocation, are cancelled or postponed until at least June 1.
As of March 17, there is one confirmed case and six presumptive cases of coronavirus in Nova Scotia.
At a March 16 press conference, Premier Stephen McNeil said “the university population has been doing a tremendous job of supporting one another.”
McNeil also acknowledged that some international students may have trouble getting home when the school year ends. He said Labi Kousoulis, the provincial minister of Labour and Advanced Education, is working with Deputy Minister Duff Montgomerie and Nova Scotia university presidents “to make sure we provide options for all those students in the coming weeks.”
Last week, Dal announced it would be restricting university-related travel. International field courses are cancelled until September 2020. “All other student, faculty and staff travel for university purposes to ALL countries with a Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) travel health notice related to COVID-19 at any risk level (1-4 inclusive)” is also cancelled.
Registration for returning Dalhousie students will begin on Wednesday, March 18. Prospective students from regions reporting cases of COVID-19 with questions or concerns are encouraged to contact university admissions.
Find more information at dal.ca/novel-coronavirus.html.