A message from the Board of Governors to everyone at the University of British Columbia

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Today, a message of heartfelt appreciation has been posted to the Board of Governors website, recognizing the extraordinary efforts and sacrifices made by our UBC community as we navigate the challenges associated with COVID-19.

The public health crisis created by the global spread of COVID-19 has presented unparalleled challenges for our Province, Canada and the world. Here at UBC, we have not been immune to the challenges that the physical distancing rules have created.

Over the course of the past month, a number of difficult decisions have been made, including a transition to online classes, shifting final examinations and assessments from in-person to online (thereby allowing undergraduate international and domestic students to return home at their discretion), curtailing on-campus research activities, and postponing in-person Spring Graduation ceremonies.

Those decisions were very difficult to make, but were and are fully supported by the Board of Governors as being in the best interests of the UBC community. We know, however, that they have created significant challenges and hardships, and the Board could not be more appreciative of the extraordinary efforts and sacrifices of everyone at UBC. We wish to recognize:

  • All UBC students, including both domestic and international, who have been faced with challenges that are extreme in scope and nature.
  • The remarkable transition, effectively undertaken over just a weekend, by UBC’s faculty members of their courses to online delivery, prioritizing the best interests of students and adhering to the teaching standards of UBC as a globally-recognized leader.
  • Our researchers, in all disciplines and on both campuses, whose on-campus research activities have changed profoundly, but have continued to move their research forward.
  • UBC staff, both on our campuses and working remotely, who are making all of these efforts happen across student services, campus operations, planning, communications, human resources and central administration.
  • The emergency response team for the incredible job of helping to plan for the unexpected and ensuring that the crisis does not divert from the academic mission.
  • The Deans, Associate and Assistant Deans and the Department Heads, on whom much of the heavy burden and responsibility for coordinating the planning for and response to this crisis has fallen.
  • And, last but not least, the senior leadership team, including President Santa Ono and each member of the UBC Executive, as well as the teams that they lead, for your incredible leadership during this unprecedented time.

Read the full message of appreciation at https://bog.ubc.ca/message-from-the-board-of-governors/

Recognizing that COVID-19 presents long-term challenges, we will remain focused on adhering to the core values of the university, including (as President Ono has repeatedly highlighted) flexibility, empathy, patience, the wellbeing of our faculty, staff and students, working toward our core academic mission and ensuring the accessibility of a UBC education during challenging economic times.

To everyone, thank you for your leadership and support in service of the university we all passionately support.

Michael J. Korenberg
Chair, UBC Board of Governors

This message was sent to faculty, staff and students in Vancouver and the Okanagan.

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