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Dean Stoett's Message to the Faculty on COVID-19/coronavirus

April 2, 2020

These are extraordinary times, and as you know, the Covid-19 outbreak has forced us to cancel all remaining live classes and public gatherings at the university. Classes are continuing online, and I am very proud of how well faculty members and staff are adjusting to the new circumstances. 

We will also need to offer our spring/summer courses online, so we are working to get them in order presently. It is far too early to look ahead any further, but the central message that we wish to convey is that the university will continue its important mission to educate and innovate.

Though we are all self-isolated to some degree at this point, I can say that the Ontario Tech University community is really coming together around this situation. Our students have been patient and understanding, our professors have been innovative, and our staff members have been professional and courteous with everyone. We are presently exploring ways we can help our many community partners, who provide such essential services to residents of the Durham Region, get through this difficult period.

Though we are collectively experiencing a difficult time right now, I have no doubt that the faculty will continue to thrive once the novel coronavirus Covid-19 pandemic has passed. Indeed one of the longer-term projects I am working on is a new cross-Faculty undergraduate degree in Public Safety and Security, which would equip graduates with the knowledge and skillsets that would enable them to lead in communities such as Durham region and to organize, amongst other things, emergency responses, climate change adaptation policies, equity standards, and other features of the new public security landscape. I'd love to hear any suggestions or advice about how this can proceed.

I'm also pleased to speak with or virtually meet with anyone having difficulties during this period. I know how stressful it has been, and while we need to acknowledge the wonderful work being done by frontline health workers (including our Ontario Tech nursing grads!), sanitation workers,  first responders, and others, we all have a role to play in flattening the curve. 

Peter Stoett, PhD
Professor and Dean

Contact Dean Stoett