Universiteit Utrecht
Update coronavirus:
Closure of buildings - no promotions
Dear students and colleagues,

First of all, we would like to express our sincerest appreciation. The manner in which teachers and support staff are working to facilitate distance teaching, is remarkable. We realise that in the current climate, the family situation also requires organizational efforts of great proportions. The willingness shown, making every effort to prevent study delays for students deserves a huge compliment. Thank you!

Students are following the given guidelines and, in doing so, help contain the coronavirus. The same for colleagues who are now working from home, unless their job is of vital importance and cannot be executed from home. Think of the colleagues working in animal care, IT, or security. We would like to thank security and many others from the Facility Service Centre for their efforts.

Developments continue to follow at a rapid pace. In this e-mail you'll read more about the consequences of those developments at our university.

Large part of UU buildings will close
In an earlier statement we said we would keep buildings open for indispensable (research) activities. The current circumstances make it impossible, also with regards to maintain a safe work environment, and inefficient to keep all buildings open for this purpose. To make sure that we can provide company aid and are able to execute security, cleaning, and other facility operations, we are closing a large part of UU buildings from Thursday the 19th of March at least until the 6th of April. A few buildings will remain open to carry out animal care and/or essential lab work, or other operations that are deemed vital.

View buildings that will close and the buildings that stay open to authorised personnel (XS-card) between 8.30 AM and 5.30 PM to perform essential duties, only possible in this location. This measure is necessary to guard and guarantee the safety of staff within these buildings. The 'Pandhof' and the Utrecht University Hall are now closed.

As you may understand, the closure of the buildings has consequences for the facility services. We have decided to limit the facilities the university provides. Read more about what providing limited facilities means.

Pick up your equipment
Are you a staff member with belongings/equipment in a closing building? And are they essential for you to be able to work from home? Pick them up on Wednesday the 18th. Make sure to follow the 1.5 meter social distance guideline. From Thursday the 19th, belongings/equipment can only be picked up in consultation with your supervisor and FSC security.

Studies and experiments scaled down
Studies and experiments that are currently running at one of the UU locations, that cannot be interrupted or are related to the coronavirus, may be continued on location with permission from the dean.

We ask you to continue other studies and experiments from home, whenever that is possible. Are you planning on starting a new study/experiment at one of the UU locations? Than this is not allowed until at least 6 April, also in buildings that remain open.

Doctoral degree ceremonies cancelled
Unfortunately, we have decided to cancel all doctoral degree ceremonies from 17 March until 5 April 2020. Thereby, our previous measure to allow them to continue with a limited audience expires. PhD candidates have been informed about this. We realise that the impact on those that are directly involved is considerable. At request of the PhD candidate, in very exceptional, acute cases, it will be explored to what extent it is possible to do the doctoral degree ceremony online entirely.

Internships and residency
All (scientific) internships and residencies at Utrecht University will be suspended until at least April 6th. Furthermore, all residencies at the Faculty of Medicine will be suspended, starting today and until at least April 20th 2020. We are currently unable to indicate whether the internships or residencies can be resumed after this date and what the consequences will be. This information will follow as soon as we know more.

Study delay and residence permits
For students, a lot of questions arise about how the university will deal with the BSA and possible study delays in the coming period. VSNU is working on a national regulation aimed at ensuring that students experience as little disadvantages as possible. With regards to questions about the BSA, questions from international students about residence permits (connected to obtaining study credits) and other issues concerning possible study delays, work is being done on a national level to find a solution. We expect to be able to give you more information about this next week at latest.

International students
As mentioned before, we advise Dutch students abroad to come to the Netherlands. Of course it depends on your exact situation to evaluate if this is possible or if staying abroad might be a better option. The course of action for international students who study at UU depends on their individual situation. We understand that it is frustrating to wanting to return home, but not being able to do so. We are trying to keep in touch and provide support.

Follow the latest developments on uu.nl
We are doing everything we can to keep you as well informed as possible. You can always find the latest updates on the UU website. If you don't find the answer to your questions there, you can ask them to
  • ICT-related questions: Make a quick and easy report in the Self-Service Portal or visit uu.nl/it-servicedesk for all contact details.
  • HR-related questions: please send an e-mail to the HR Service Desk: HRServicedesk@uu.nl.
  • Study-related questions: contact your teacher (about a specific subject). If you have a specific question that your teacher is unable to answer, please contact your study advisor by telephone or e-mail.
  • Other questions: coronavirus@uu.nl.
Stay alert and work safely
During the upcoming period, a lot of people work at home and a lot of digital resources are being used. That also means that people make use of private devices. We ask you to work safely: install the latest updates for your device and use an up-to-date virus scanner. There are indications that the crisis surrounding COVID-19 is being misused to send phishing emails. We ask you to be extra alert to this. If you receive a suspicious email, do not open it but forward it to cert-uu@uu.nl. More information on working safely can be found on https://www.uu.nl/worksafely.

Education after 20 April
Despite the fact that many teachers and students are still getting used to this new situation, we see how people are becoming increasingly capable with providing and receiving online education and examination. Like we said before; thank you for doing such fantastic work. We hope that we can continue to count on your commitment. Not in the least because we have to take into account that even after 20 April (in block 4), teaching and testing will have to continue to take place online. We will keep you informed.

Finally, please take care of yourself and each other.

Kind regards,

The Executive Board of Utrecht University

Anton Pijpers - President
Annetje Ottow - Vice President
Henk Kummeling - Rector Magnificus

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