We have closely followed all current developments of the emergency related to the spread of Coronavirus COVID-19 and we have set up a working group to keep you constantly updated via email, website, apps and social network. We have also made an email address available for any information requests: firstname.lastname@example.org.
We are currently waiting to find out if teaching activities can be resumed.
Upon receiving news from the health authorities, we will set the new timetables for catch-up lessons, either in class or with video lectures on the Blackboard platform, for the hours lost due to the suspension of university lectures.
The role of scientific and cultural institutions such as ours is to deal rationally with any given crisis such as the current one and to ensure that the seriousness of health protection measures does not develop into alarmism. For this reason, I thank the deans, professors, you students and the all University staff for the collaboration and understanding shown.
Here is a summary of useful information.
CLASSES: SUSPENSION AND CATCH-UP
The decision to suspend all teaching activities, as recommended by the competent authorities, was taken with the aim of reducing numbers of persons in restricted places in order to limit the risk of contagion due to the effect of an easily-transmitted virus. As we await updates from the competent authorities, we assure you that the eventual resumption of University classes will, in any case, be regulated to give you the chance to organise your return, given that, for example, at the Milan campus over 10,000 persons arrive from outside the Region or even from outside Italy.
We are preparing the appropriate structures, enhancing the Blackboard platform, to provide the videos of the missed lessons and some professors have also provided additional educational resources online. In particular for programmes attended by international students who will only stay in Italy short-term.
As you can well imagine, given that our University provides an average of 1,600 hours of lessons a day in the Milan, Brescia Piacenza and Cremona campuses, with peaks of 300 hours of consecutive lessons, the complexity in the use of distance teaching tools is not insignificant.
The generalised use of streaming, for example, could pose significant organisational and technical problems relating to the concrete usability of the didactic resources by students.
The deans, together with the teaching support structures, are collaborating on recovery plans and new agendas for lessons and exams: detailed information will be given by each Faculty as soon as possible.
STUDENTS RESIDENT IN THE GEOGRAPHICAL AREAS SUBJECT TO PRECAUTIONARY LIMITATIONS
For students residing in local areas subject to precautionary travel restrictions, the Faculties will adopt ad-hoc initiatives, in particular by recording the lessons and publishing them on the platform.
Unless otherwise indicated by the authorities, the Faculties will adapt the exam schedule to fit in the missed lessons, seeking as far as possible to avoid disruptions in your study programmes. Naturally, you will be promptly informed on the times and dates of the aforesaid exams.
DEGREES AND CEREMONIES
We are currently working on the new graduation calendar, fully aware that the general guidelines will then have to be altered to accommodate the twelve different Faculties and the approximately 100 study programmes provided by the University. The degree exams dates, procedures and public participation will be readapted, taking into due consideration the needs of each of the various degree programmes, some of which differentiate the discussion of the thesis from that of the ceremony. In setting the new dates, delays in the processing of thesis caused by access limitations to libraries will also be taken into account.
DEADLINES AND ADMISSION TESTS
As previously communicated, all the deadlines which fell within the phase of suspension of teaching activities have been extended by ten days. In the event of further extensions, you will be promptly notified of the new terms for all your obligations.
In line with the indications from the competent authorities, any non-completed admission tests can be taken on new dates that have already been fixed or are soon to be announced.
SERVICES AND COLLEGES
The EDUCatt canteens and colleges will adopt the same functional procedures as the past week.
I invite you to continue following all the updates on www.unicatt.it and I thank you for your kind attention, sharing with you the words of one of our students from the Faculty of Agriculture, Food and Environmental Sciences who wrote an article for CattolicaNews giving a heartfelt account of the situation of his town in the "red zone": it is “words of thanks addressed to all the doctors, nurses and hospital staff who have worked non-stop".
Rector of Università Cattolica del Sacro Cuore