Ewch i’r prif gynnwys

Message from the Vice-Chancellor - 20/03/20

Mae'r cynnwys hwn ar gael yn Saesneg yn unig.

Dear colleague,

As we come to the end of the week I am emailing to reflect on what a momentous few days it has been. I am conscious of how much work these major shifts have meant for all of you. I very much hope that you can get some well-earned rest over the weekend and that gradually, new routines will emerge as we settle into our changed world.

Many of you will be looking after children and other dependants whilst working at home over the coming weeks. I am conscious from talking to College Heads and Directors of Professional Services that people are looking out for each other and seeing whether they can help. It is what I would have expected, but wonderful to hear nevertheless. For my part I want to stress that if you are in this position, the University understands that you may not always be able to commit to a day of work in the normal manner. I know that all of you will make your best effort to work under these difficult circumstances and want to reassure you that you do not need to take annual leave to make up any perceived difference. We all need to be flexible in these strange times and we will understand if caring responsibilities need to be juggled with work. If you are unable to work at all because of caring for dependants, please talk to your line manager about dependants leave.

Yesterday I thanked all of those who are still coming on to campus to help provide the essential services that must continue. I also thanked our medics and healthcare workers.

Today I need to inform colleagues that, difficult though it may be for some, you must now stop coming on to campus unless your work is essential. From Monday we will be introducing access controls on our buildings, so please work from home unless you are required on site.  We are compiling a list of key and essential workers in line with Government thinking and the needs of the University, and will supply detailed guidance on buildings in the early half of next week. This will include information on how deliveries of essential supplies will be managed, and what to do if you find you do need access to a building unexpectedly, for example to retrieve an important item.

This is quite a change. I know many may feel they want to come on to campus to support the University. The sad fact is that as the situation has so rapidly changed, such actions actually expose society to risk and must now stop unless work on site is unavoidable.

The IT department have done a fantastic job at ordering, configuring and redistributing laptops to priority areas. This work is well underway and most essential functions are now able to work remotely. In the next few weeks we are expecting further deliveries of laptops to facilitate off-site working, and we will be issuing guidance on how the intended recipients will be able to collect them, or for those in self-isolation, have them delivered.

In summary, our message is that the University remains open, and while physical access to the site is restricted, we continue to carry out as many of our functions as possible virtually and remotely.

As our transition continues at pace, it is important to stress that our commitment to students in our Halls of Residence remains steadfast.

With that in mind, some of you may be in a position to help. As communicated yesterday, we have just launched an online form that we have asked all students to complete so that we know who is staying in Cardiff, who is heading home and who is self-isolating. From next week we hope to be calling all those who remain in Cardiff to check in with them. We need a team of staff to help with this so if you’d be happy to use a script and call students from home, and can access the internet to record updates, then please consult your line manager and let us know by email at studentcheckincovid19@cardiff.ac.uk.

Our normally vibrant campus has become sadly quiet, but that is how it must be. I hope you have a restful weekend, and I will be back in touch next week.

With best wishes,

Colin Riordan