covid-19 updates: full details

covid-19 (novel coronavirus) information

we are committed to the health and safety of our campus community, we have created a covid-19 dashboard that includes the latest details about confirmed cases among our students, faculty and staff who are working and studying on-campus.

latest update

  • posted december 08, 2020 at 05:37 pm

    on december 8, 2020 the government of alberta issued additional measures in response to the state of public health emergency, and the rising covid-19 confirmed case numbers in the province. mountain view county, the town of olds and calgary remain on the enhanced watch list

    effective immediately:

    • no indoor or outdoor social gatherings are permitted in any setting (campus housing, public spaces or workspaces).
      • lunchrooms and student lounges on campus are now closed.
      • no in-person meetings are permitted. 
    • the calgary campus remains closed. 

    effective december 13:

    • dining on campus will be closed to in-person service and will have takeout only. 
    • clc fitness centre will be closed. 
    • learning commons will be closed, however staff are still available to offer services through a virtual format. 
      • the test centre will be available for all students who have appointments to write their exam in that space.
      • the service desk and printing services will remain available to students. 
    • mandatory work from home measures will be implemented unless the college  determines that work requires a physical presence for operational effectiveness.
      • college people managers will be working with the emergency operations team to determine what positions will need to continue to work on campus.
    • indoor campus spaces are closed to visitors with the exception of our retail meat store, olds college brewery and the campus store.
    • in-person health and wellness programs will be closed. 

    to see the full list of measures please visit the government of alberta’s covid-19 mandatory measures webpage. these restrictions will be in place for a minimum of four weeks.

    mask directive: non-medical masks or face coverings that cover the mouth and nose are mandatory for all on-campus indoor public spaces, including classrooms, hallways, washrooms and other common-use spaces. masks are not mandatory if you are working alone in an office or cubicle or where a barrier is in place. masks must be worn outside if social distancing protocols can not be met. 

    classes continue

    with respect to alberta’s post-secondary system, alberta’s government, under the guidance from the chief medical officer of health, is not recommending further measures or restrictions on our institutions at this time. therefore, classes will continue to be delivered via the existing method for the remainder of the fall term.  

    essential staff and students coming onto campus must complete the daily health assessment using the olds college alert app. 

    anyone feeling unwell should stay home and call health link 811 or fill out the ahs covid-19 self assessment tool any student who is experiencing symptoms of covid-19 that are not related to a pre-existing illness or health condition should fill out the student isolation registration form.

    olds college confirmed cases dashboard 

    we are committed to the health and safety of our campus community, we have created a covid-19 dashboard that includes the latest details about confirmed cases among our students, faculty and staff who are working and studying on-campus.

    confirmed cases of covid-19 (as reported to olds college)

    confirmed active cases: 3

    *campus exposure

    1

    thursday december 3, 2020 - ralph klein centre 

    1

    november 30, 2020 - w.j. elliott building (trades building)
    december 1, 2020 - w.j. elliott building (trades building)

    1

    december 2, 2020 - no campus exposure

    recovered cases: 4

    * covid-19 positive cases campus exposure

    a confirmed positive covid-19 case in a building means that an individual either worked, attended class or otherwise spent a significant amount of time in this building. one case might span more than one building.

    the following actions are taken when there are positive cases on campus :

    1. areas occupied by the individual during infectious period are contained, cleaned and disinfected
    2. contact tracing is conducted by ahs with support from the college and anyone determined to be a close contact of the individual is contacted by ahs and instructed to isolate. risk to others present or working in the zones is considered very low

    please refer to exposure criteria established by alberta health, for more information on “close contacts”.

    individuals on campus should take precautions in all spaces, and work under the assumption that an infection is possible. please continue to take measures to prevent the spread of covid while inside and outside of the workplace. this means taking steps to protect yourself and others by practicing good hygiene, physical distancing and monitoring for symptoms.

    Updated Travel & Meeting Restrictions

    • olds college employees are advised that in-person meetings are not permitted.  
    • olds college business related travel, outside of canada, is not permitted. 
    • olds college business related travel, outside of alberta, is not permitted.    
    • olds college travel related to professional development is not permitted.  
    • any olds college employee choosing to travel outside of canada for personal reasons is required to self isolate as per provincial guidelines and work from home.  if working from home is not approved, this period of self isolation will have to be taken as vacation days. 
    • students travelling outside of canada must follow all self isolation requirements and other protocols of the government of alberta travel restrictions. 

winter term for students

will the college be holding classes in winter 2021?

yes! while classes might look a little different this winter term, the olds college team is working hard to create experiential learning opportunities for our students.

for the winter 2021 term, classes will be offered predominantly in a remote learning environment with some exceptions. each program has completed an academic delivery model review to determine the most appropriate delivery method, this includes: 

  • remote delivery - classes will be held virtually 

  • on-campus - classes will be in-person and on-campus, while adhering to social distancing and safety protocols

  • remote with required/mandatory in-person, on-campus labs - classes held virtually with mandatory on-campus, in-person labs (there will be no virtual alternative for these labs). 

emails have been sent out to all admitted students for the winter 2021 term, highlighting what the program delivery will be for the upcoming term. please check your olds college email account for more information.

will i be able to access the campus during winter term?

yes, students who need to access the campus for winter classes will be able to.the learning commons will be open monday to thursday 8 a.m - 8 p.m and friday 8 a.m - 5 p.m starting september 8.

  • the campus store will be closed from monday, december 21st to sunday, january 3rd, 2021.  beginning january 4th, our hours will be monday to thursday 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. we will be open extended hours for the start of the winter term - january 11th - 15th, monday to friday, 8:30am - 4:00pm. 

  • elements dining hall will open the evening of september 5.

  • students living in residence will need to register with choc if they intend to live on campus for any period over the holiday break. 

will we be able to move back to in-person learning if restrictions are relaxed after the fall term begins?

no, the way we begin the semester will likely be how we complete it.

since classes will be offered in a remote delivery, will tuition be lowered?

while classes will be delivered in a different way, the cost to deliver the programs has not changed. costs include faculty, administration, equipment, infrastructure and maintenance, as well as ensuring our programming continues to be of the highest quality while reflecting the needs of industry. for these reasons, tuition will remain the same.

will i still be able to live on campus in the winter?

yes, campus housing is available for the winter term. applications are open and students interested in living on-campus should submit an application for winter 2021.

when can i move into campus housing?

students are able to move into housing according to their scheduled move-in date and time pre-arranged with choc.  you should have already received an email with your date.  if you have not received an email, have questions, or need to make alternate arrangements due to out of province travel, please contact the residence office at campushousing@choc.ca or 587-796-1796.

can i still live with roommates in the town houses?

yes, roommates are permitted in the townhouses. the rules on guests and visitors have been modified. details are shared with students during residence orientation.

do i need to wear a mask on campus?

yes, non-medical masks or face coverings that cover the mouth and nose are mandatory for all on-campus indoor public spaces, including hallways, washrooms and other common-use spaces.

requirement

you are required to wear a mask in:

  • Classrooms, Labs, & Lecture theatres (see exception below)

  • learning commons (library) and computer labs (see exception below)

  • meeting rooms (see exception below)

  • service, food, and retail areas

  • common areas, hallways, stairwells, elevators

  • washrooms

  • college-owned vehicles with two or more occupants

  • all other indoor public areas

  • outdoor areas where two metres of physical distancing cannot be maintained. 

exceptions

you are not required to wear a mask:

  • while seated in classrooms, labs, lecture theatres, learning commons, computer labs or meeting rooms where two metres of physical distancing can be maintained

  • if you are a staff member working in:

    • private office spaces and cubicles or research labs where access is restricted and 2 metres of physical distancing can be ensured and maintained

    • employee-only spaces where physical barriers have been installed between employees and patrons. (e.g., student, employee, visitor)

  • if you are eating or drinking in designated areas where food and beverages are allowed

  • if you are a broncos athlete engaging in athletic activities with specific governing body related guidelines or an individual participating in a college sponsored fitness activity (e.g. clc fitness centre; health and wellness programming).  

  • if you are a faculty member instructing students where two metres of physical distancing can be maintained.

what do i need to know for move-in day at residence?

students are required to sign up for, and attend a live, virtual residence orientation which will detail move-in procedures as well as expectations and guidelines for living on campus.  you will also be able to ask any questions you may have. 

the first orientation starts sunday, january 3rd at 6:00pm but there are several dates available between january 3 - 6, 2021, so please select the one that is convenient for you. //attendee.gotowebinar.com/rt/2077438570976324111.

students who have not completed an orientation will not be able to move in.

will meal plans be available for the winter term?

meal plans available for students living on campus. elements dining hall will open the evening of september 5.  as a result of the college’s response to covid-19, the food services experience could look different. this includes:

  • the dining room occupancy will need to be monitored to accommodate physical distancing needs and limited occupancy in the facility

  • changes to hours of operation to account for reduced numbers of students on campus and cleaning

  • changes to buffet and self-serve stations

  • students can expect:

    • increased cleaning and sanitization to comply with provincial guidelines for food service outlets

    • a variety of food choices and continuation of all-you-care-to-eat offerings

olds college and our partner chartwells remain committed to offering high quality food services to students that is convenient, safe, nutritious and demonstrates good value. 

i was recruited to play for the olds college broncos, will i still get the opportunity to play?

olds college is working closely with the alberta colleges athletic conference (acac). training for olds college broncos will begin in the fall. student athletes will have to follow increased health and safety protocols that have been put in place. as per acac games will not take place during the fall term.  the acac is working on potential scenarios for delayed start dates to the 2020-21 season.  fall term enrollment and gpa requirements remain in place for eligibility. all athletic scholarship commitments will remain in place as long as gpa and eligibility requirements are met.

i have decided that i no longer wish to live in campus housing. can housing and application fees and deposit be returned?

if you decide that you no longer wish to live in campus housing, standard refund policies and procedures apply.

are any changes being made to admission requirements for programs due to covid-19?

no, all program admission requirements are remaining the same and must be met for an offer of admission to be given. this includes providing transcripts and other required documentation,  proof of english language proficiency, work experience, or job shadowing hours, etc.

i am applying to olds college after attending another institution. how will olds college review my transcripts if i have credit/non-credit or pass/fail grades?

olds college is employing a flexible approach that does not disadvantage students. in all cases students must still “pass” (50% or cr) the course or graduate from the program being used for admission.

can i defer my admission if i do not want to enrol in the winter term?

admission cannot be deferred. if you decide that you do not want to attend olds college for the winter 2021 term, you are required to cancel your application. if you wish to be considered for admission again in the future, you will be required to submit another application. standard refund policies and procedures apply to any cancelled applications.

how will the hands-on labs be facilitated?

for programs that will be offered through remote delivery, some practical lab components may be offered virtually where feasible or moved to a future term. some programs will still require mandatory hands-on labs that will be delivered in-person on-campus during the winter term.

will apprenticeship technical training be running in the winter?

olds college is working closely with alberta industry training (ait) and face-to-face training will be available in the winter term. we encourage you to continue checking www.tradesecrets.alberta.ca for updates.

how can i access online courses if i cannot afford to access the internet?

students can apply for a student loan to assist with covering computer costs which can include the cost of wifi. student aid will typically assess up to $500 in computer-related costs (e.g. computer, laptop, internet). students are to submit a student loan application under the province they have resided in 12 months outside of their period of study.

if i am attending olds college online, will i still have to pay the recreation fee?

if all of your courses are offered in the online format only, you will not be charged the athletics and recreation fee. if you are registered in 8 or less credits on-campus, you will be charged the part-time rate. if you are registered in 9 or more credits on-campus, you will be charged the full-time rate.

how will i get my textbooks?

an online form will be available via the admitted student information section on your program’s webpage to order textbooks from the campus store. your textbooks will then be shipped to you.

How will I be able to access services & supports (counselling, accessibility services, tutoring, etc) if classes are online in the fall?

student supports and services will continue to be available using remote technology (e.g., zoom, google meet). students will learn how to access this information in the fall via online orientation and the student newsletter.

if there is another “wave” of covid-19, how will olds college respond to that?

olds college continues to follow the directives of alberta health services and alberta advanced education.

  

information for international students

important information about travelling to canada for the winter 2021 term and quarantine information was sent out to all international students in early november, so please refer to your olds college email address for more details.

you will also need to ensure you complete your student quarantine plan no later than december 4, 2020 and book the airport shuttle form if you will be arriving at the calgary international airport (yyc).

how will post-graduation immigration be impacted if the college moves to an online fall term?

to address ongoing developments with respect to covid-19, on april 7, 2020, ircc introduced temporary policy changes to the post-graduate work permit program (pgwpp). these changes, effective immediately for spring and summer terms, allow for an international student graduating from an eligible designated learning institution to be eligible for a work permit if the graduate has:

  • completed a program of study in canada (minimum 8 month duration);
  • completed at least 50% of their studies in canada; and,
  • completed at least 50% of their studies in-class

olds college will continue to monitor the situation for the fall term. visit the government of canada hosted study in canada webpage for up to date information.

as an international student, if i am taking the program online do i still have to pay international tuition?

yes, international students, regardless of program delivery format are required to pay international tuition rates.

if english language testing centres are closed, how can i get proof of english language proficiency to support my application?
  1. toefl has an online testing option.

  2. olds college, like many other canadian institutions, is accepting duolingo for the 2020-2021 academic year. visit the international students page for more information about this service including test score requirements.

  

current conditions

what is the current status of covid-19 at olds college?

olds college is taking the covid-19 situation seriously. the health and safety of our students remains our number one priority. we are actively monitoring the situation and working closely withalberta health services, who are the lead on covid-19 in our province. the college has enacted our emergency response team to monitor the covid-19 situation and the impact it may have on employees and students.

as part of olds college’s response to the covid-19 pandemic a re-entry task force was formed to develop a  re-entry plan that provides a coordinated response to the current public health emergency that includes delivery of fall classes and a plan for re-entry to the olds college campus. the health and safety of our campus community is always our top priority, and we will continue to work to accommodate the restrictions put in place by alberta’s chief medical officer of health, while providing students with the best possible learning experience.

what is being done to protect the health of the olds college community?

as we prepare for a phased re-entry to campus, we are taking precautionary measures to  prevent the spread of illness, including:

  • enacting the olds college emergency response team to manage our response to covid-19. the team is working closely with alberta health services to monitor the situation and the impact it may have on olds college employees and students.

  • under the recommendations of the government of alberta, the majority of classes will be offered remotely for the fall term, with some exceptions. 

  • for those returning to campus throughout the phased re-entry, daily health monitoring will be required. staff and students will use the olds college alert app at the start of each work day to complete a quick health assessment. 

  • engineering controls will be installed around campus to ensure effective physical distancing. 

  • extra diligence on cleaning with a focus on high-touch areas like handrails, door handles, and washrooms.

  • promoting good hygiene practices among members of the college community (e.g., handwashing) and providing appropriate hand-cleaning facilities and alternatives like alcohol hand rub.

what do i do if i think i have covid-19?

if you have symptoms such as fever, cough and difficulty breathing, and have travelled outside canada or may have been exposed to someone who has covid-19, stay home and call health link 811 or fill out the covid-19 self assessment tool.  

  • call 911 if you are seriously ill and need immediate medical attention.

employees should fill out the reporting staff absence form and notify their direct supervisor.

students should fill out the student isolation registration form

what if someone does test positive for covid-19 at olds college?

individuals who test positive for covid-19 will be under the direction and support of alberta health services. alberta health services will follow-up with potential close contacts of the individual. olds college will take direction from alberta health services as to what follow-up measures are to be implemented, should the need arise.

if i need to self-isolate because of possible exposure to covid-19, whom do i need to tell at olds college?

staff and faculty must fill out the reporting staff absence form and notify their supervisor or association dean.

students must submit the student isolation registration form

  

Student Supports & resources

is there any covid-19 financial assistance available to me as a student?

the following is a compilation of available financial aid resources, as of april 2, 2020, for students during this period of active covid-19 protocols. please note that some of these supports may not apply to you and that resources are frequently updated. please continue to check the links below as new information may become available. 

students can still apply for student loans until 30 days remaining in their program. if you are struggling financially make sure to apply under your provincial loan provider as soon as possible. if you have a current student loan and require additional funding, you can submit a request for review on your student aid account outlining your circumstances to be assessed for additional funding (if eligible). 

covid-19 provincial financial supports (alberta) 

  • emergency isolation support – for working adults who must self-isolate.
  • utility payment deferral – residential customers can defer utility payments for the next 90 days
  • alberta student loan repayment deferral – students in current repayment for alberta student loans will have payments paused until sept. 30, 2020. with no accrual of interest starting mar. 30, 2020 (please visit student aid alberta website)
  • atb banking customers and alberta credit unions – deferral of loans, lines of credit or mortgage payments (please contact your individual institution for information)

covid-19 government of canada financial supports

the canadian emergency student benefit (cesb) was announced as additional relief for students who fell through the cracks of the previous federal government announcements.  the emergency student benefit act was passed in parliament on april 29.  pending parliamentary approval canadian citizens, permanent residents, protected persons, and those persons registered under the indian act will be eligible.  the application will be launched in may, but no specific date specified as yet.  below are the details to date:

  • students will be eligible for $1250/ month (may to august) and an additional $750 top-up for students with disabilities or dependents (this is a change from the original $500 announced and now aligns with the $2000 announced through the cerb canada emergency response benefit)
  • students studying full-time or part-time are eligible
  • recent post-secondary graduates (december 2019) can apply
  • high school graduates are eligible as long as they are enrolled in a pse by february 2021 (definition of enrolled tbd)
  • must attest to unable to work or unable to find work or threshold not reached when working (threshold to be released)
  • canadian students studying abroad are eligible for funding.
  • the cesb does not need to be declared on the federal portion student loan application as a targeted resource. please speak with your province or territory to determine if this will be treated as a resource.
  • students can access these funds and apply for ft or pt student loan funding if in school.
  • students who need to demonstrate they have a disability will be able to do so either through an attestation process or through disability status established through cslp

other financial support 

  • consult directly with your banking institution for additional possible options when managing hardships caused by recent developments.
  • students requiring short-term assistance with food are encouraged to contact local food banks:

student awards

winter awards have been selected and students were sent notification to their olds college email account.  

students that are currently enrolled may be eligible to apply for external awards.  external awards are not administered by olds college and most post-secondary students are eligible to apply.  to get you started, a list of external awards is posted on the scholarship page of the olds college website.  each award has individual criteria and deadline. it takes a bit of searching, but there are endless student award opportunities available.  search scholarships, bursaries and awards using keywords such as; your program, your home county, your parents’ or your employers, local agricultural society or other service clubs.

if you are experiencing extreme financial difficulties or need assistance in applying for funding please reach out to the financial aid advisor - hannah ayearst hayearst@oldscollege.ca or by phone: 403.556.8285

i am feeling very overwhelmed and anxious about covid-19, is that normal?

it is completely normal to have feelings of being sad, confused, angry or scared when dealing with these kinds of situations. we will do everything possible to communicate accurate information, in a timely manner, and to explore options that will continue to ensure the safest learning environment possible for all. 

additional tips to stay mentally and physically healthy include: 

  • limit watching news reports and social media

  • use only trusted sources of information, such as the olds college website and the resources we have listed).

  • keep to regular routines as much as possible.

  • be sure to look after yourself physically by getting enough rest, fresh air, exercise and nutrition.  

  • don't isolate yourself from other people (unless ill) but do use reasonable precautions when in close physical contact. talk to people you trust such as friends or family by phone or email.

  • avoid using substances to deal with emotions. instead focus on your strengths and what has helped you through difficult times in the past and use these skills to try to help manage your current situation.

  • virtual counselling services remain available to students, email councellor@oldscollege.ca to book a phone or google meet appointment.
i cannot log into moodle/myoldscollege/student email, who do i contact?

please contact it support 403.507.7777 or itsupport@oldscollege.ca. for account issues or password troubles you can also complete the support form that will go to our learning commons it support team.

Is the College offering any virtual health & wellness events?

the Health & Wellness team has organized the following virtual events for students and staff: 

  

Faculty & staff Supports & resources

should staff and faculty be working from home?

the health and safety of our staff and students continues to be our top priority. departments on campus have gone through a re-entry template. speak to your manager about your return to campus date. where possible, we encourage all staff to work remotely.

see the working from home technology tips article on oc connect.

i am having technology issues, who do i contact?

please contact it support 403.507.7777 or itsupport@oldscollege.ca. our it and tlci teams are ready to help.

what travel restrictions are currently in place for olds college?
  • olds college business related travel, outside of canada, is not permitted for the remainder of the 2020 calendar year.

  • olds college business related travel, outside of alberta, is not permitted at this time.    

  • any olds college employee choosing to traveloutside of canadafor personal reasons is required to self isolate as per provincial guidelines and work from home.  if working from home is not approved, this period of self isolation will have to be taken as vacation days 

  • olds college does not classify professional development as essential at this time.  all non-essential olds college related travel should be canceled

should i be attending meetings in person?

olds college employees are advised when possible to meet over the phone (conference) or electronic web meetings, etc. only those external meetings (onsite or offsite) deemed essential to college operations are permitted.

social distance protocol must be followed for all in-person meetings.

as an employee who should i tell if i am sick or cannot attend work?

staff returning from travel outside the country (or living with family members who are returning from travel outside the country) should self isolate for 14 days and work remotely, if possible, while monitoring symptoms, and complete the staff absence form.  

staff who are ill with cold or flu-like symptoms:

  1. should stay home and complete the covid self assessment.
  2. based on the outcome of the assessment, decide whether to call healthlink (811) for instruction.
  3. if instructed to self-isolate by healthlink, staff should inform their direct supervisor and complete this staff absence form which can also be found on oldscollege.ca/covid19.

staff who are absent due to covid-19 illness or advised to self-isolate:

  1. will be paid for time absent while sick or otherwise self-isolated.
  2. are not required to produce a doctor’s note. 
  3. are required to notify their supervisor/manager of their intention to self-isolate.

staff who are instructed to self-isolate, and are not sick or symptomatic, should discuss with their manager whether they can work remotely and complete the staff absence form.  

at this time, staff who cannot find alternative child care due to the closure of schools and daycare centres should notify their manager to discuss whether they can work remotely and complete the staff absence form.

please contact human resources if you have other unresolved concerns. we will continue to support our staff members as we face this challenge together.

as an olds college employee, am i expected to work from home while i am in self-isolation?
staff who are instructed to self-isolate, and are not sick or symptomatic, are encouraged to work from home, if possible. they should discuss with their manager. 
what if i have concerns about someone else who is ill in my work area?

if you are concerned about a co-worker in the workplace who is exhibiting flu-like symptoms, speak to your supervisor/manager. supervisors/managers can contact human resources for further information as needed.


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