Email from the Vice Chancellor to students (Thursday 15 October)
I am writing to thank you for the way in which you have conducted yourself this academic year in terms of Covid-19. Thanks to excellent behaviour throughout our University community in terms of:
- Social distancing
- Wearing face coverings
- Regular hand washing
- Avoiding crowds
- Good practice generally
the number of cases of Covid-19 at the University of Worcester have been very few.
This small number is significantly less than both the Worcestershire and the national average. Although we are several weeks into the academic year there has been no outbreak or cluster of cases.
This is a tribute to you and your fellow students.
At the same time, there has been very good participation in class and your studies. Very many of you have met and made new friends as well as behaving with kindness and thoughtfulness towards others – particularly older and more vulnerable people. You have been dealing with all the restrictions placed on you by the pandemic in a calm, highly responsible fashion. You are a credit to the University and yourselves. Thank-you.
At a time when students nationally have been getting a bad press, you should know that representatives of the UK government and national media have been in touch with me in the last few days to ask why Worcester has been doing so well compared to so many other Universities.
I have let them know how very responsible the overwhelming majority of students and staff have been. I have made it clear that I am very proud of Worcester students and staff.
The government has just released a new link to a site which enables everyone to see how areas in the UK are doing. The country has been divided into areas with approximately the same population size 7,000 – so that the numbers are easily comparable:
Using this map you can see that there have been 5 Covid-19 cases in Henwick (postcode WR2 6AJ), which is the area in which the St. John’s Halls are recorded.
This compares to 627 Covid-19 cases in the Nottingham area of University Park, Lenton Abbey and Jubilee Campus.
Quite a difference between two identical sized populations of approximately 7,000 people!
At Worcester, the very small number of students and their flatmates who have had to self-isolate have all been well supported. No-one has become seriously unwell.
All this has meant that we continue with our blend of in-person and on-line education and activities generally.
Of course, all this could change in an instant. The University is not an island and the situation is worsening nationally.
We must all continue to keep wearing face coverings, respecting social distancing and doing all we can to minimise transmission of Covid-19.
At the University, we are constantly making adjustments, while continuing to work to improve access to testing availability and mutual support for any members of our community who are being detrimentally affected by the situation.
We are well aware that there are loud voices nationally calling for Universities to close and move online. There is no reason for the University of Worcester to go ‘online’. We intend to continue with our blend of in-person and online activity for as long as we are permitted by HM Government. We have no intention of closing.
Do please stay in touch with developments by regularly consulting the University Frequently Asked Questions and Covid-19 information on:
Don’t hesitate to share this letter and these links with friends, parents, relatives and supporters.
Thank-you so much and very best wishes for an outstandingly successful year – despite all the difficulties that the Covid-19 pandemic is putting in the way.
Professor David M A Green CBE
Vice Chancellor & Chief Executive
University of Worcester