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Update from Vice-Provost/Chief Academic Officer, College Secretary and Director, College Health Service to students and staff

18 December 2020

Dear students and colleagues

The Christmas break is nearly here and it will be a welcome one after such a disruptive year! Your efforts in helping reduce the spread of COVID-19 are making a difference, thank you, but we still need to be vigilant. Over the holidays it will be important to take all measures to prevent the spread of the virus such as face coverings, hand washing, cough and sneeze good practice, physical distancing and avoiding large gatherings.

Christmas and New Year student activities

Our festive activities for students continue over Christmas and New Year including the ‘12 walks of Christmas’, daily 1-hour guided walks around Dublin city from 23 December – 3 January; a sea swim in Seapoint on St Stephen’s Day, 26 December; international student chats; and there is now a mobile coffee van in Front Square with take away refreshments, tea, coffee and food for purchase every day except Christmas day. From 26 December - 3 January, except 1 January, it will also have a daily international hot dish at lunch time plus coffee and pastries throughout the day for purchase. To see details of the Trinity Sport Centre opening and other activities, please click here.

Study and Library spaces

To help students who want to study on campus for their exams, bookable study spaces are available over the holiday period and the Library has resumed evening and Saturday openings, please see more information here

Semester One assessments

Tutors have emailed students regarding preparations for semester one assessments, including what to do if you are experiencing ill health or other challenging circumstances, and information on having the necessary facilities in place to take online assessments. Please note that the emergency measures that were in place in the annual session last year (including aggregation, automatic right to defer, and right to re-sit passed exams), in line with regulations already in place at the reassessments will not apply for the upcoming assessment session. However, we are very aware that circumstances remain challenging and encourage students experiencing difficulties that may affect your ability to complete assessments to contact your Tutor. We will consider such cases through the processes normally available and will exercise flexibility in taking appropriate account of the ongoing circumstances.

Student Counselling & College Health

The Student Counselling Service and College Health Service are offering crisis support to the Junior Dean, the Warden of Trinity Hall and College Security for students’ needs over the Christmas period. Normal services will resume on 4 January.

International travel and PCR testing

If you do decide to travel abroad over the Christmas period for non-essential travel, despite the current advice, please note that PCR testing is not provided through the public health system. It can be done with third-party commercial testing facilities pre-departure, please see here. Booking in advance is necessary.

COVID-19 testing and restricted movement

If you return from abroad, the 14-day period of restricted movements can end if you receive a negative/’not detected’ result of a PCR test that has been taken a minimum of five days after your arrival back in Ireland. You should wait for your negative test result to be returned before ending the period of restricted movements.

Staff should refer to the email here for more information regarding international travel.

We very much hope you enjoy the break. Please mind one other, and protect each other, and follow Government guidelines both on and off campus.

With best wishes for a happy Christmas and a happy new year in 2021. Nollaig shona agus athbhliain faoi mhaise dhaoibh.

Stay safe. Stay well. Bígí slán agus sábháilte.

Kind regards,

Prof. Jürgen Barkhoff, Vice-Provost/Chief Academic Officer
An tOllamh Jürgen Barkhoff, An Leas-Phropast/Príomhoifigeach Acadúil 

John Coman, Secretary to the College
Seán Ó Comáin, Rúnaí an Choláiste

Dr David McGrath, Director, College Health Service
An Dr Daithi Mac Craith, Stiúrthóir, Seirbhís Sláinte an Choláiste