JCU graduations postponed
James Cook University is reviewing the University’s scheduled public events to meet the Australian Government’s advice to reconsider non-essential mass gatherings above 500 people.
The University is continuing to evaluate the continually evolving situation and our priority is the health and wellbeing of our students and staff and the broader community, while limiting disruption as much as possible in these times of uncertainty.
With that in mind, the University has decided to postpone its upcoming graduation ceremonies, which were to be held in Cairns in late March, and in Townsville in early April. The graduation ceremonies will be postponed to a date to be determined.
“Despite not holding graduation ceremonies, students have in fact graduated and will be provided their testamur. Students will be offered an opportunity to attend a graduation ceremony in the future,” JCU Vice Chancellor Professor Harding said.
In 2020, the University celebrates 60 years of higher education in the North and 50 years as a University. JCU has planned a week of events in April to celebrate its 50th birthday. A Gala Dinner that was to be held in Townsville on the 24th of April will be postponed to later this year. JCU is reviewing other planned events responding to official advice.
At the moment, on-campus classes are continuing as scheduled and are not impacted by the current advice. The University does not conduct lectures that exceed 500 students. The University is implementing social distancing measures as advised by state and federal health authorities.
Active planning and work is being undertaken regarding online and other study options, and where possible. We will continue to support students living in on-campus accommodation, with the health and wellbeing of our community our highest priority.
At this stage, staff are not required to work from home, but are being advised that if they are at a higher risk of severe health impacts or contracting COVID-19, given underlying health issues or age, or those caring for others in high-risk groups, they are welcome to work from home following discussions with their supervisors. In addition, students at higher risk are also being encouraged to discuss their study options if they have concerns.
JCU is continuing to follow the advice of Queensland Health and the Australian Government in determining its response to COVID-19. If at some point there are confirmed cases that involve the JCU community, the University will be guided by the authorities as to what action JCU should take at that time.