Page 10 - NCU_BEACON Vol 2- Issue 1- 2020
P. 10

10    | NOR THERN  CARIBBE AN  UNIVER SITY                                                                                                                                         |   THE  BE A C ON   |

        A NEW DAY has dawned and our world has changed in  The university immediately geared into renewed
        ways that no one could imagine, as reported in the Time  mindsets- one of growth; openness to change,
        Magazine. The World Health Organization (WHO) on  nimbleness and adaptability; collaboration; faith and
        March 11 declared COVID-19 a pandemic, pointing to  humility; focus on skill set and not personalities; focus
        the more than 118,000 cases of the coronavirus illness  on purpose to the mission and others, not self; and that
        in over 110 countries and territories around the world  our God is in control
        and the sustained risk of further global spread.  “This is
        not just a public health crisis, it is a crisis that will touch   Situational Analysis
        every sector,” said Dr. Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus,    A situation analysis of the initial impact of COVID-19
        WHO director-general, at a media briefing. “So, every   on the university was conducted and are as follows:
        sector and every individual must be involved in the      • Immediate suspension of face-to-face classes.
        fights.”                                                 • Transition to online and remote teaching and
                                                                   learning for all classes.
        The rationale for a strategic response is due to this    • Conduct final semester examinations via
        global condition created by the pandemic of the novel      technology for the most part.
        coronavirus has had a major impact on world affairs      • Closure of the students’ residential halls.
        and  the  order  and  operations  of  civil  society  and   • All  students  (nation  and  international)  we  sent
        its institutions. One institution is that of education.    home over a short period of time.
        Northern Caribbean University has experienced this       • The technology services and infrastructure were
        reality and has reevaluated its position and operations to   ramped up to support online and  remote teaching
        re-calibrate to what seems to be the definition of a new   and learning and assessment.
        normal in delivering tertiary education. The institution’s   • All  institutional  meetings  (departmental,
        responses have shaped a new and 21st century approach      academic board, workers meeting, and cabinet)
        to education and doing business in a post COVID-19         were moved to an online platform.
        world.                                                   • During the transition phase, hand sanitising, face
                                                                   mask, social distancing practices and behaviours
        On March 10, at a Jamaica Information Service press        were implemented.
        conference, the Government confirmed its first           • The work from home order is being implemented
        imported case of COVID-19. In response to the grave        to prevent contracting and  spreading of
        public health situation, NCU suspended face-to-face        COVID-19, especially persons with comorbidity
        classes for all students from March 16, 2020. Since        and over a certain age.
        then the number of cases has increased dramatically.     • The immense economic impact was immediately
                                                                   felt in the worsen cash flow situation due to the
        Therefore, closure will continue until September 7, 2020   inability of students to pay their outstanding
        when educational institutions reopen as stipulated by      tuition costs.
        the Government of Jamaica.
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