A message from uOttawa president and vice-chancellor Jacques Frémont

Posted on Friday, March 13, 2020

To all members of the uOttawa community,

The single highest priority of the University of Ottawa will always be the health and safety of its students, faculty and staff.

In response to the spread of the COVID-19 Coronavirus, the University has already taken a number of steps to reduce the risks and impact on our community and our campuses.

As of yet, no cases of Coronavirus have been identified within the uOttawa community.

Academic integrity and continuity remain a priority. Our goal is to ensure that students can complete all courses in which they are currently registered and receive their evaluations and credits without any interruption.

In light of urgent recommendations by public health officials that ‘social distancing’ is the most effective means of protecting students, staff and faculty members from infection, the University is announcing today that:


  • Classes on Monday, March 16, 2020 and Tuesday, March 17, 2020 are cancelled.
  • As of Wednesday, March 18, 2020 all in-person classes and labs in the current (Winter 2020) term will be moved to distance and online learning formats for the rest of the semester.
  • Plans are currently being developed for the exam period. Exams will not be taken in-person. More information will follow shortly.
  • Students currently in clinical and co-op placements should continue their activities without alteration unless otherwise notified.
  • The University remains open. All residences, food services, libraries and other facilities and services remain accessible and open until further notice.
  • Students will be contacted through digital channels with specific arrangements as to how each course will be completed.
  • For the time being, all staff will continue to perform their usual tasks and roles. However, the health and safety of our employees is paramount, and the University is considering various factors including school closures, social distancing and essential services and weighing their impact on employees. More information will be provided to staff in the days to come.
  • As previously announced, all University-related travel by uOttawa staff and students is prohibited until further notice. Faculty travel is strongly discouraged.

The University will provide ongoing updates on our Coronavirus website and via our social media feeds. This will include updates to academic programs, travel information and precautions you can take to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. Please keep in mind that self-hygiene is key to mitigating the spread of COVID-19.

These unprecedented measures will be disruptive. I trust, however, that all members of our community will understand that they are necessary and being implemented for the benefit of all. I wish to thank each of you for your valuable understanding and cooperation in these extraordinary times, especially our employees, who are working diligently to ensure our operations continue to run efficiently as this complex situation unfolds.

I am confident that by remaining resilient and by continuing to support one another that we will be able to meet and overcome the challenges ahead.


Jacques Frémont
President and Vice-Chancellor
University of Ottawa
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