Dean's update regarding the Fall 2020 Term

Posted on May 04, 2020

Dear Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science students, staff and faculty:

First, let me congratulate you on the completion of the Winter 2020 term. To the students, thank you for your understanding, and for your hard work over these past weeks as we made the sudden shift to remote teaching and remote final assessments. I know it was not easy for you and I am proud of the resilience and fortitude you demonstrated in completing your studies this term. To the faculty and staff, thank you for your creativity, innovation, and hard work solving problems in real time to fulfill our academic mission under these extraordinary circumstances.

As the Principal announced earlier today, Queen’s will be open for the Fall 2020 term. How courses will be delivered is still uncertain, given the current situation. I’m writing to let you know what the Faculty of Engineering and Applied Science is doing to prepare for the Fall.

As engineers, we are problem solvers – and part of problem solving involves strategic contingency planning. While we hope for a positive outcome that has us welcoming students back to campus in the fall, we have been considering options for a range of scenarios. We are committed to following Public Health guidance on the safest and best approach on a return to campus, and additional information will be provided as we gain more insight into what this will look like for the City of Kingston and Queen’s.

The majority of our staff and faculty continue to operate under remote working protocol, with those deemed as part of essential services working onsite. The opening of on-campus research labs is being carefully planned under the guidance of the Office of the Vice-Principal Research. Details on the timetable and protocol for the reopening of research facilities are being worked out, and we will provide updates as they become available. Students should connect directly with supervisors regarding research activities.

In preparing for the Fall 2020 term, the University is taking direction from public health authorities to ensure the health and safety of our students, staff and faculty. The situation is changing daily, making it difficult to predict whether students will be on campus or learning remotely. Planning for the latter is a complex and challenging task, and so instructors and staff are being asked to make this their focus to ensure we are prepared for remote teaching this fall. The Engineering Teaching and Learning lab will be a critical resource in this planning. While we still hope to be returning to campus in-person, it is important that we work together to ensure we are well-prepared to deliver a high-quality, remote educational experience this fall for all students, should the need arise.

No matter what, we are looking forward to welcoming new and returning students with the same eagerness and excitement as any other year. We are committed to collaboration and maintaining the community spirit that is key to a Queen’s engineering education.

I recognize that this is a challenging time, and I want you to know that we will continue to communicate with you as more information becomes available. Thank you for being flexible and responsive during these changing times, and for staying committed to a brighter future for all. I know that we will get through this together.

Dean Kevin Deluzio