DCUSU launch Covid-19 safety plan

Michelle Cullen

Dublin City University’s Student Union plans to launch a COVID-19 safety campaign in the coming weeks.

The Campaign will advise students on how to keep themselves healthy both mentally and physically while adhering to the government’s restrictions.

The campaign will encourage students to maintain a healthy outlook on life while balancing socialisation in a new virtual-based reality.

Student Union Vice President for welfare and equality Dean O’Reilly said: “From the beginning of our term, we’ve been heavily monitoring the Government Guidelines to ensure we know what is expected of each institution and then following that up at an Upper Management Level to ensure practices are followed through on.”

Two members of the SU, Chloe Mc Morrow Vice President for education and placement, and Dylan Mangan Vice President for engagement and development, sit on the Health and Safety board alongside DCU staff to ensure important issues are raised for students.

“We wanted to secure the availability of library and study spaces which are socially distant and cleaned accordingly.” Said O’Reilly.

DCU has limited the number of on-campus students by only scheduling essential classes, in the hope that this makes campus safer for all students. The library will remain open.

Kaja Natanek a 3rd-year actuarial maths student said, “Not having on-campus lectures is manageable for maths students as we have no hands-on classes or discussions seminars.”

“Though a big disappointment is the maths learning centre being closed as all of actuarial students relied on it for help.”

Although the SU has worked hard to keep the library open for students to study in a safe and calm environment, centres like the maths learning centre have remained closed.

“In the maths learning centre, you can just put your hand up and ask a question quickly but now you have to schedule a meeting with a tutor and it’s more of a time waste and not practical.” Said Natanek.

The sabbatical team has been split into sub-teams to ensure that should one member of the SU contract COVID-19 all members will not have to self-isolate.

“One of the most important things we need to do to keep students safe is to ensure that we can continue to do the work we do every day.” Said O’Reilly.

Dylan Mangan is based exclusively on St. Pats Campus, with Dean O’Reilly and Lucien Waugh-Daly Vice President for academic affairs based on the Glasnevin Campus for the first semester.

Accommodation has presented a huge problem for students this year. Many do not know if they should take full-time accommodation with reduced on-campus hours or in some cases none at all.

The SU has reached out to the main accommodation providers for DCU to ask them about their COVID-19 planning.

“I raised Government Guidelines with each provider, Hazelwood and Campus Res for example, such as keeping certain apartments vacant to allow for relocation of students should outbreaks occur.” Said O’Reilly.  

The SU said they have “made sure, as best as possible, that each accommodation provider we have recommended is COVID compliant.”

Michelle Cullen

Image credit: DCUSU

Note: This article was reuploaded on 25/03/2021 due to a fault with The College View website.