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COVID-19: Latest Updates

Last updated 08 April 2021 

UL Student COVID-19 Day-Pass Portal 

Dear students,

Commencing Monday 12th April, we will be carrying out a three-week trial of the UL Student COVID-19 Day-Pass Portal for students attending face-to-face teaching and with a booking to access the library.

The principle behind the portal is simple. Every day you are on campus for lectures, practical classes or library study, you must complete the COVID-19 daily symptom tracker questions on the Portal.

A green pass means that you can come on campus.

A red pass means that you must stay at home and you should contact your local GP or the Student Health Centre.

Use your smartphone to access the UL Student COVID-19 Day-Pass Portal here from Monday 12 April. You may be prompted for your UL logon credentials the first time you click on the link. We recommend that you bookmark the link for daily use.

All students who access the Portal will be entered into a draw to win a €100 One4all gift card.

You will be asked to provide your digital green pass at the beginning of each class and before entering the library.

If you do not have a smartphone, you can download and print-off a PDF copy of the UL Student COVID-19 Self-Declaration Form from the Documents Section in the UL Student COVID-19 Day-Pass Portal landing page. This must be completed and signed before you come on campus.

The use of the UL Student COVID-19 Day-Pass Portal will further strengthen COVID-19 protocols that are already in place and ultimately help prevent the spread of COVID-19 within the UL campus community.

It is important that all students scheduled for on-campus learning in April take part in trialling the Portal to help us plan for a more normal student experience during the next academic year.

Many thanks for your co-operation.

Kind regards,
Nige

Professor Nigel Healey
Interim Provost and Deputy President
/ Vice President Global and Community Engagement

 

Previous Updates

Dear colleagues and students,
 
Ireland is now operating under Level 5 of the Government’s plan for living with COVID-19. Under these restrictions, third level education and research are designated essential activities where they are “…not capable of being delivered through alternative means and are time-critical for students and learners during this period.” (Minister Simon Harris).
 
In line with this guidance and the rapidly rising COVID-19 infection rates, the University will be continuing with our existing blended learning model, but with enhanced protective measures for staff and students until at least the end of January, pending a review of the public health restrictions by Government.
 
Undergraduate and Taught Postgraduate Students

 

  • Semester 2 starts on 25th January.
  • Kemmy Business School and Faculty of Arts Humanities & Social Sciences continue online learning only.
  • Faculty of Science & Engineering and Faculty of Education & Health Sciences continue blended learning mix of online and essential on-campus labs and classes.
  • Travel beyond 5km is only permitted for essential activities. If you do not have scheduled teaching on-campus, you should remain at home and should not travel to Limerick or the UL campus.
  • Timetables will be published during the week of 18th January. Please check your timetable carefully so that you know what on-campus labs and classes are scheduled for the week commencing 25th January.
  • You are strongly encouraged to check your UL email in case your Course Director/Module Leader has made alternative arrangements for Week 1, commencing 25th January.
  • If you have scheduled teaching on-campus, you may remain on campus between classes, but otherwise all communal study spaces are closed.

 

Research Students

 

  • Only those that absolutely need to be on campus for research purposes, where their activities cannot be undertaken remotely, should be on-site and only for the purpose and duration required to complete the tasks that cannot be done remotely.
  • Communal areas, open plan spaces, rooms for group meetings and multi-occupancy offices should not be used at this time.

 

Library & Information Services

  • Library & Information Service will continue to provide a range of services including:
  • Online library available 24/7
  • Online help, subject guides and skills classes
  • Click and Collect Service
  • Scanning and Digitising
  • Special Collections and Archives online only

 
All study spaces will be closed except for students who are between scheduled on-campus classes or labs and the library building will be closed for physical access from 5:00pm today Monday 11th January. 

 
All Staff

 

  • All staff should continue to work from home unless required to be on campus for essential teaching or research or where necessary to prepare/access materials for online classes.

 
You must wear a face covering in all University buildings and must follow Public Health guidelines that are key to minimising the spread of COVID-19: wash your hands properly and often, practice social distancing, cover coughs and sneezes, and follow the current Government restrictions.
 
UL Sport Gym, 50m & 25m Pools and all indoor and outdoor facilities including pitches are closed with the exception of facilitating elite high performance training.
 
The vaccination programme is being rolled out and the end of the pandemic is in sight.  However, the sudden emergence of the new, more transmissible strain means that we once again need to work together to curb the spread of the virus and protect our family, friends and frontline workers.
 
UL Executive recognises that the closure of schools and childcare will have an impact on some of our staff, particularly those with young children. We understand that the way you arrange your working day may change and that productivity may be impacted, and that you will do your best under the circumstances.
 
I urge you to take care of yourself. Fitness Classes are currently being delivered online with programme details and booking on the UL Sport App. This approach to working and learning can be isolating. Talk to others and remember that there are a range of support services available to students and staff here in UL.
 
Kind Regards,
Nige
 
 
Professor Nigel Healey
Interim Provost and Deputy President
/ Vice President Global and Community Engagement

Dear Students,
 
As you are aware, we have previously confirmed that the academic model for Spring 2021 will follow the same format as this semester. This will mean that the majority of courses will remain online, minimising on-campus activity to essential on-campus learning activities, including all research activities, lab-based and practical tuition and certain small-scale tutorials that cannot happen online. The current academic delivery arrangements at UL are consistent with the Government’s Plan for Living with COVID. Should the national public heath guidelines be relaxed later in the academic year, the restoration of additional face-to-face activities will be considered. However, students whose classes are currently wholly online and who have chosen to study remotely will be able to complete their modules online. 
 
On Campus Activities & Visual Schedule for Spring 2021

Below is a visual schedule of the academic weeks which will assist you to plan for the coming semester. In line with our academic model approach, courses of the Kemmy Business School and the Faculty of Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences will be delivered and assessed online for Spring 2021. Courses of the Faculty of Science & Engineering and the Faculty of Education & Health Sciences will be delivered and assessed mostly online, and students will only be on campus where there are essential on-campus learning activities scheduled in the relevant weeks (per the below schedule; where alternative arrangements apply your course director will advise). Students should check their timetable for further details, where individual activities will be labelled as ‘online’ or ‘on campus’ similar to this semester. Using this approach, including on-campus and online learning, minimises the risk of a Covid-19 outbreak by using social bubbles (keeping year groups together) and a circuit breaker (periods off campus) based on scientific insight into the spread of the virus.
 
Research students should contact their supervisor for details of on campus dates.
 
Assessments

Assessments for individual modules will be announced at the start of semester by the module leader as usual, and will be a mixture of in-semester continuous assessment and end of semester online timed exams. The semester will revert to a full 15 weeks, with teaching activities for weeks 1-12, a study week, and 2 further weeks for assessment submission and exams. It should be noted that there may be a small number of on-campus examinations for specific modules and if this is the case for a specific module, these will be outlined for students at the commencement of the semester by the module leader.
 
Timetables

Like previous years, the timetable will be available during the week before the semester commences (due to be published during the week of 18 January). This combined timetable will detail your scheduled on-campus and online activities. Be sure to check your timetable for the online and on campus weeks, as your class times may vary between these weeks (even if your course is fully online).
 
What if I have symptoms of Covid-19, had contact with someone with Covid-19, or am in a vulnerable group, and have been advised to self-isolate?

If this applies to you in any way, please follow HSE advice and self-isolate if recommended. Where possible, we will make arrangements to allow you complete your scheduled activities online or to reschedule. Please contact your module leaders as early as possible to allow you and them to plan accordingly.
 
We are acutely aware that some students, especially those new to UL, may be finding it difficult to adjust to online learning and others may be feeling socially isolated.  We are working closely with UL Student Life and the UL PSU to evaluate student feedback and develop improved supports to help you engage with your lecturers and peers, which we will be rolling out in the spring semester. We also have a range of resources available to support you in your online learning and assessment, which have been developed in collaboration with students.  These can be accessed here.
 
Finally, I want to wish you and your families all the best as we near the end of this semester, and we look forward to starting of the new semester in the new year.
 
Nige

Professor Nigel Healey
Interim Provost and Deputy President
/ Vice President Global and Community Engagement

Dear student,
 
If you live on campus or in rented accommodation in the vicinity of the UL campus and plan to travel home to your family for Christmas, please read this message carefully.
 
COVID-19 continues to be a severe threat to human health and we must do all we can to minimise its spread, especially now as students across the country prepare to return home to their families for Christmas. I know that no UL student wants to unwittingly carry the COVID-19 virus home and risk infecting their siblings, parents and grandparents. 
 
For this reason, we are now facilitating on-campus COVID-19 testing by Public Health Mid-West for students living in the immediate vicinity of the UL campus who plan to travel home for the Christmas period. Those of you residing on campus or living in neighbouring off-campus estates can register for a COVID-19 test even if you do not display any symptoms of the virus.  
 
Registration for a COVID-19 test is now open here and tests will take place on campus (EGO 10, Main Building) between Tuesday December 8th and Friday December 11th from 12noon to 7pm each day. Students can also opt to be tested at the Ballysimon centre. Students who register will be given appointment times and should attend only at the appointed time. Students must wear a mask at all times. All tests will be processed by the HSE and follow-on protocols will be communicated to you by the HSE should you test positive.  
 
The offer of on-campus testing will build upon the myriad of safety protocols we have in place to keep you and our local community safe.
 
It will aim to minimise any virus transmission by helping to identify asymptomatic carriers of COVID-19, particularly among students who intend to return home to their families for the Christmas period.  
 
If you receive a COVID negative test, you should limit your social contacts and follow all the safety protocols until you return home, so that you can be confident you have done all you can to limit any potential spread to your family.
 
There have been recent cases of COVID-19 among the UL student population and these are due to community and household transmission. 
 
We call on you all to follow public health guidelines, to limit your contacts, to download the COVID tracker App and register for a COVID-19 test and restrict your movements if you plan to travel home to your families at the end of the semester.
 
With effective vaccines and therapies on the immediate horizon, let’s work extra hard together in the final phase of this pandemic to keep our families and loved ones safe, so we can all enjoy 2021 together.
 
Kind Regards,
Nige
 
Professor Nigel Healey
Interim Provost and Deputy President
/ Vice President Global and Community Engagement

This notice applies to the Third Level Graduate Programme (2017 Revision).

In light of the continuing uncertainties caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the following Notice sets out the updated immigration arrangements that apply to all non-EEA persons holding a student permission (Stamp 2), who wish to avail of the Third Level Graduate Programme but are unable to report to their local registration office to receive a Stamp 1G because:

  • They have returned to their home countries or countries of ordinary residence due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • They cannot secure an appointment due to the impact of COVID-19.

Rather than attending in person, as a further temporary measure applications may be submitted electronically to the Registration Office, Burgh Quay, Dublin (bqregofficeapplications@justice.ie). All required documentation should be scanned and included in the application.

Where a permission has been granted, applicants will still be required to register when they have returned to Ireland or appointments are available.

This temporary measure will be kept under review in light of the restrictions arising from the COVID-19 pandemic and may be amended or withdrawn, in whole or in part, when considered appropriate to do so, but regardless will cease to apply no later than 28 February, 2021.

All other eligibility criteria set out in the 2017 Revision of this Scheme will continue to apply.

From 02 December 2020, customers renewing their Immigration Registration Permision will no longer need to submit their passport to have an immigration stamp attached by their Registration Office. 

This applies to renewals made in the Burgh Quay Registration Office in Dublin and renewals made in local Registration Offices at Garda Stations nationwide.

Full details about these changes are available on the INIS website.

Dear students,
 
I hope you are keeping well and adjusting to this changed academic environment. The COVID-19 Academic Monitoring and Planning Group at UL which includes, faculty members, professional services staff and the leaders of UL Student Life and the UL Postgraduate Student Union (PSU), has been working for some time now on planning and timetabling for the remainder of the academic year 20/21.
 
The group has been in contact with the Minister for Higher Education, Research, Innovation and Science and our colleagues across the HEI sector in Ireland as well as our partner institutions within the Mid-West Regional Cluster (MWRC) – Mary Immaculate College and Limerick Institute of Technology – in order to establish the best possible model for academic delivery for the rest of the 20/21 academic year, while keeping the health and safety of our student and staff communities a priority consideration. 
 
In order to provide you with greater certainty and to allow you adequate time for planning, the decision has been taken to continue with the current academic delivery model for the remainder of the academic year 2020/21.  
 
This will mean that the majority of courses will remain online, minimising on-campus activity to essential on-campus learning activities, including all research activities, lab-based and practical tuition and certain small-scale tutorials that cannot happen online. The current academic delivery arrangements at UL are consistent with the Government’s Plan for Living with COVID.
 
Should the national public heath guidelines be relaxed later in the academic year, the restoration of additional face-to-face activities will be considered. However, students whose classes are currently wholly online and who have chosen to study remotely will be able to complete their modules online. 
 
We are acutely aware that some students, especially those new to UL, may be finding it difficult to adjust to online learning and others may be feeling socially isolated.  We are working closely with UL Student Life and the UL PSU to evaluate student feedback and develop improved supports to help you engage with your lecturers and peers, which we will be rolling out in the spring semester. We also have a range of resources available to support you in your online learning and assessment, which have been developed in collaboration with students.  These can be accessed here.
 
The current academic delivery model, introduced at the start of Semester 1, is intended to ensure that the three MWRC institutions (UL, MIC and LIT) can continue to deliver higher and adult education, deemed nationally essential by the Government, in a way that maintains the quality of the educational experience while protecting the health of students, staff and our wider Mid-West community.
 
Nige
 
 
Professor Nigel Healey
Interim Provost and Deputy President/ Vice President Global and Community Engagement

The Irish Council for Overseas Students continues to provide up-to-date information for International Students are in Ireland during  the COVID-19 Pandemic.

Go to the ICOS Website