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Update from College Secretary to staff and students

25 September 2020

Dear students and colleagues

Next week marks the start of semester 1, although a different one with the current Level 3 Government restrictions in Dublin. To help us protect each other and slow the spread of COVID-19, you are encouraged to use the Government’s COVID-19 Tracker App and record your close contacts on a daily basis.

Returning to campus

For students and staff returning to campus, please follow these ‘Top 10 Tips’ which you can see in animated form here

  • Wear face coverings in indoor shared spaces
  • Wipe on, wipe off your work/study space
  • Keep right, keep moving in one-way systems
  • Keep a contact log
  • Record your seat number in lectures e.g. by taking a photo on your phone
  • Use the COVID-19 app
  • Don’t wait around indoors, arrive on time for a lecture/laboratory session etc and leave once it ends
  • Wash your hands frequently
  • Maintain physical distancing
  • Practice good cough and sneeze hygiene
  • A more detailed presentation can be viewed here.

    Access and current ID cards

    Please remember that current staff and student ID cards are required to access the campus. If you are a staff member and need to have your staff ID card issued or renewed, please see how to do so here. If you have difficulty accessing the website, then please call the HR Service Centre on 01 896 3333 or email . For more information on student ID cards, please see here and contact if you need further assistance.

    COVID-19 Response Plan

    In confirmed, positive cases

    A COVID-19 Response Plan will be circulated to all Heads of School/Unit which outlines steps for dealing with a confirmed positive case of COVID-19 on campus including public health principles, public health risk assessments and control measures and local contact details of nominated individuals.

    In suspected cases

    Self-isolate. Please see Self-Isolation and Self-Quarantine for advice on how to do this. Ring the College Health Service - Tel 01 896 1556, or your own GP and they will talk to you and assess whether you meet the criteria for a swab test for COVID-19.

    For non COVID-19 related medical issues, please contact College Health on 01 896 1591.

    Freshers’ Week

    This year’s Freshers’ Week Fair for student societies and sports clubs will take place online. From 28 September – 2 October students can virtually visit society stalls, sign-up and view a full calendar of events at the Online Society Fair as well as having virtual chats with sport club committee members about what sport will look like this year, how to sign up to a sports club and view a full calendar of events at the Trinity Sport Orientation Hub.

    Student breakout spaces

    Spaces are being made available for any student to book, in 45 minute slots, during the day, for example to eat lunch between face-to-face lectures. They include marquees in New Square and Botany Bay as well as the following spaces - Dining Hall (during Buttery hours); the Buttery Vaults (after Buttery closes); the old Bank of Ireland branch space outside the Hamilton Building; TBSI Knowledge Exchange and the “bull nose” area outside of the TBSI Tercentenary Hall; Goldsmith JCR and lobby and the Old Stone Building at St James's Hospital. Student stewards, to be appointed by the SU and GSU, will maintain bookings accessible here, ensure that public health and College guidelines are maintained and ensure that the areas and equipment are kept clean. All users of the spaces are asked to keep the areas clean and tidy for other users.

    Free hot water, microwaves, ‘€1 coffee’ and vending machines will be made available. Open from 9am – 6pm, Monday to Friday (apart from 28 September when it opens at 11am), 2m social distancing will apply in all spaces and marquees will be designated by faculty to minimise the risk of virus transmission through students mingling and safeguard the health and wellbeing of our students.

    Thanks go to the SU president, Eoin Hand, GSU president, Gisèle Scanlon and Estates & Facilities, Catering, IT Services and Student Services for enabling this initiative.

    Sport activity

    Under Level 3, individuals can continue to exercise and train in all Trinity Sport’s facilities and groups of up to 15 can exercise, train and play recreational activities outdoors providing there is no contact. The following Trinity teams, who compete at high levels in their sport, have been granted Government exemption from level 3 restrictions and can train and compete with appropriate COVID-19 protocols in place and their fixtures that are scheduled to take place on and off campus will go ahead but without spectators: Trinity Meteors – Women’s Basketball; Men’s 1st Rugby team; Women’s 1st and Men’s 1st Hockey teams; and Women’s 1st Volleyball team. Trinity Clubs are not permitted to hold any other congregations on or off campus and must not, so long as Level 3 continues, congregate before or after training sessions or competitive fixtures. For more details, please see here

    Face coverings

    The SU and GSU presidents and director of the College Health Service feature in the ‘Working towards a safe reopening in September’ video series in which they outline the importance of wearing face coverings. As you will be aware, face coverings are now mandatory for all teaching and learning events for all students and staff, in all the Libraries and in internal public spaces on campus. Please comply with this requirement in order to reduce the spread of COVID-19.

    We look forward to welcoming you back next week, either virtually or in person.

    Stay safe, stay well. Bígí slán agus sábháilte.

    Kind regards
    John Coman Secretary to the College