For institutional updates from the University of Saskatchewan and the University of Regina, please visit their respective COVID-19 Update sites.

For the most up-to-date and accurate information about COVID-19 visit the Government of Canada's and Saskatchewan Health Authority's websites. 

JSGS Student Updates

April 8, 2020

Dear JSGS students, 

We understand that there have been many personal consequences as a result of COVID-19 pandemic, and one of these may be financial hardship. We have established the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy (JSGS) Emergency Bursary Program, which is a modest fund available to assist JSGS students at both campuses who may need temporary help on an emergency basis due to circumstances caused by the COVID‑19 pandemic. This special program will be available only for the period deemed appropriate by JSGS. Funds for the JSGS Emergency Bursary Program are provided and managed jointly by JSGS at the University of Regina and University of Saskatchewan campuses.

The JSGS Emergency Bursary Program is intended to bridge a financial gap that would otherwise impede a student’s ability to complete their studies. Students can apply for emergency funding of up to $2,000 at one time, although approval is not guaranteed.

To be eligible to apply, the applicant must be actively registered and enrolled in a JSGS program or be on approved academic leave (this includes the spring/summer academic break for students in the MPA program at the USask campus). Students in all JSGS programs are eligible to apply for support. For GENI students, those with USask as their home institution are eligible to apply.

JSGS students experiencing financial hardship who wish to apply for an emergency bursary can complete the application form and email it (together with the required supporting documentation) to jsgs-bursary@usask.ca. Any questions about the application or process can also be sent to that email. The first round of applications will be reviewed on April 17, 2020, and must be submitted by April 16 at 3:00 p.m. Applications submitted after this date will be reviewed on a rolling basis.

There are also other emergency funding sources available that we encourage you to explore: 

In addition to the above funding sources, USask has extended the tuition and fee payment deadlines for the 2020 spring and summer terms. The tuition deadlines are now June 2 (2020 Spring term) and August 3 (2020 Summer term). For more information on how to pay, or to learn about the Graduate Student Tuition Instalment Plan, visit https://students.usask.ca/money/tuition-fees/pay.php.

Take care.

Doug Moen, Ken Rasmussen and Murray Fulton

 


April 2, 2020

Dear students,

Now in our third week of the COVID-19 outbreak here in Saskatchewan, we are shifting from crisis response and management to medium-term planning. 

The campus-specific weekly town hall meetings have been a great way for us to connect with and hear from you on important matters. However, as issues are being addressed and new information has become available through our two universities and government bodies, it has become clear that we no longer need one town hall meeting per campus. As a result, starting April 6 and until further notice, the JSGS will be moving to a single combined student town hall meeting from 12-1pm (Saskatchewan time) (https://zoom.us/j/656051946). This session is open to all JSGS students.

PASS/FAIL VS. NUMERICAL GRADE

As many of you aware, there has been discussion at the two universities recently about moving to a pass/fail versus numerical grading system. Here is a brief overview of the two institutions’ decisions, and how they will affect you as a JSGS student:

  • University of Saskatchewan (USask) – With a few exceptions (Law is one and they require students to choose the Pass/Fail option before they take their exams), the University of Saskatchewan, including the JSGS, has decided to keep the numerical grading system
  • University of Regina (U of R) – The U of R is providing students with four approved options for final grades for the Winter 2020 semester. On a class-by-class basis, students can choose which option best suits them. The options, which are irreversible once chosen, are:
    • Traditional numeric grading
    • Course withdrawal – the U of R has extended the course withdrawal deadline to coincide with the final day of classes (Thursday, April 9). Students chosen this option would avoid a failing grade and therefore a negative impact on your GPA.
    • CRC (Credit-COVID-19) – for students who pass a course, but who experience stressors that have negatively impacted their academic performance. This option is considered a credit/pass, will not impact GPA, can be used in degree completion requirements, but may have some impact on eligibility for funding or financial awards. The deadline to select this option is May 31, 2020.
    • NCC (No Credit-COVID-19) – for students who receiving a failing numerical grade and request to replace it so as it preserve their academic standing. Students who do not pass a course due to failure to complete a final exam or other component of the course, will not be eligible for “NCC”. This option does not impact GPA and does not count towards degree completion. The deadline to select this option is May 31, 2020.
  • JSGS students are bound by the regulations of the campus at which they are enrolled.
    • For example, if a JSGS U of R student is taking a USask class, they can submit a request to the U of R graduate chair (i.e. Ken Rasmussen) to have their grade changed as outlined above.
    • JSGS USask students taking a U of R class must accept the traditional numeric grade given to them by their instructor.
  • JSGS is a graduate school—with both professional and research-based programs—and we strongly recommend that students from the U of R campus select the traditional numeric grading option as this is an important element of your degree. We encourage you to attend the next town hall meeting on Monday, should you have further questions about this.

EXTENSIONS

  • We understand that there has been some confusion around extensions. We will be reaching out to all instructors again to ensure they are aware of options available. Please contact your instructors directly to discuss what might be the best route for you, if you feel an extension is needed.

884 CAPSTONE PRESENTATIONS (USask campus)

  • We have heard that a few students are nervous about presenting their 884 capstone presentations via Zoom. It is natural to be worried about using a medium with which you are unfamiliar; therefore, we highly recommend that you sign up for a free Zoom account and run through your presentation with a friend or fellow student.

JSGS INTERNSHIPS

  • Placing interns is an ongoing process. Tianna is working with the mentors to ensure the process is moving forward. The COVID-19 situation has affected the 2020-21 mentors in different ways, which means some are slower to respond than others. Please be assured that we are working to move the placements forward so that interns know where they will be placed for the upcoming year.

UPCOMING ONLINE EVENTS

 OTHER

  • USask University Library - Although the University Library’s physical spaces are closed, staff are working remotely to assist students and faculty with their academic and research needs. Please visit the library website for updates, a listing of current library services, and to check out the new research guide: https://libguides.usask.ca/libraryupdates
  • The U of R has transitioned to online library services. Subject librarians are available to students over email and Zoom. There have also been changes to borrowing practices and timelines. For more information on online resources and practices, see https://uregina.libguides.com/covid-19/.

STAYING CONNECTED

Take care,

Doug Moen, Ken Rasmussen and Murray Fulton 


March 26, 2020

Dear students,

Thanks to all of you who joined us on Monday for the online town hall meeting. We are glad to see that many of you are adjusting to the new circumstances, and we continue to welcome your feedback as we navigate this changing situation. Regarding some of your questions, here is what we have learned so far: 

STUDENT RESIDENCES/ACCOMMODATIONS

  • At the University of Saskatchewan, students remaining in residence and living in Voyageur Place (dorm-style units) are being moved into apartment-style units to abide by proper social distancing protocol. USask Culinary Services will be providing emergency hampers only for students who are quarantined due to recent travel or due to symptoms associated with COVID-19. Students who have a remaining meal balance on their accounts will have the option to extend the expiry date of their plan or get a refund so that they can purchase their own groceries. 
  • Students living in residence at the University of Regina will not be required to move out of their accommodations. For those who do wish to move off campus, the U of R is waiving all regular cancellation fees and providing pro-rated refunds. For the foreseeable future, U of R Food Services will remain open with a take-out option.

INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS

  • If an international student cannot/prefers not to return home right now, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has announced special measures to help temporary and permanent residents, including those here on study permits and affected by service disruptions due to the novel coronavirus. IRCC has published a website providing detailed information including updated processes on how you can apply to extend your stay in Canada if needed.
  • Currently, international students are not eligible for financial assistance from the Canadian government, such as government student loans or Employment Insurance. That said, international students may be eligible for bank loans but must have a co-signer who is either a Canadian or a permanent resident.
  • International students remaining in Canada should consult their embassy for advice and guidance on what supports their governments can provide.

FINANCIAL SUPPORTS

  • The Government of Canada has suspended federal student loan repayments, effective March 30 and lasting until September 30, 2020. This loan repayment break will be automatic, and students won’t be required to apply for the payment pause.
  • All USask and U of R financial supports that were available before the COVID-19 outbreak remain open to students.
  • USask students experiencing an unexpected financial crisis should contact Student Central to access the Nasser Family Emergency Student Trust at askus@usask.ca or 1-306-966-1212 or 1-877-650-1212.
  • In regards to tuition, students should be aware of the general rules for late payment. At USask, if funds are not paid by the deadline, a hold will go on the student’s account. The hold remains until the account reaches zero. At the U of R, tuition and fees are due on the first day of classes. However, the university does allow a grace period before late payment charges are added to the account. Please refer to the current Academic Schedule for the end of penalty-free payment date. Late payment charges are applied at 1.5% of the outstanding balance per month.
  • At USask, graduate students may sign up for a Graduate Student Tuition Instalment plan to pay their tuition fees with monthly pre-authorized payments. The U of R does not offer payment plans for tuition.

HEALTH AND WELLBEING

CONVOCATION

  • In line with federal and provincial requirements regarding COVID-19 prevention, and supporting the University of Saskatchewan’s and the University of Regina’s decisions to close both campuses to public visitors until further notice, Spring 2020 Convocation ceremonies have been postponed at USask and cancelled at the U of R. However, degrees will still be conferred in June to graduating students, but through alternative means. More information about what this will look like will be made available as soon as possible.

MPP/PHD RESEARCH

  • Social distancing practices are essential in order to curtail the spread of the virus in the wide variety of spaces where we conduct research. In light of this, you may need to postpone your research or change your methodology (e.g. changing in-person interviews to phone or Zoom interviews, etc.). Please discuss different options with your supervisor.
  • Research sponsors, including the tri-agencies, are well aware that the COVID-19 pandemic can affect funded research projects in many ways. In addition to existing mechanisms for addressing exceptional circumstances, the tri-agencies are actively assessing the issues and will be sharing further information. Please visit their respective websites for regular updates:
  • For research-based students at the U of R, the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research has released modified thesis guidelines to accommodate students during this period. For a student who submits a ready-to-defend thesis before April 15, 2020 and will defend no later than May 31, 2020, the tuition fee for spring/summer semester will be waived. If the ready-to-defend thesis is not submitted by April 15 and defended by May 31, students will be required to register for Spring/Summer 2020.

WITHDRAWAL DEADLINES

  • The withdrawal deadline for the USask 2020 Winter Term has been moved to the last day of classes (April 7).
  • The withdrawal deadline for the U of R 2020 Winter Term has passed. Please note that the last day of classes for the 2020 Winter term is April 9.

ONLINE/REMOTE COURSE DELIVERY AND ACCESS

  • Thank you to all students who have provided feedback on the new Zoom-delivery format. Faculty are adjusting to this new teaching approach, and we greatly appreciate your patience as we fine tune the technology on our end.
  • We recognize the current challenges you are under, and it is our goal to support you through this time so that you can complete your program on schedule. If you need an extension, please talk to your instructor.
  • Students who do not have access to computers in their off-campus locations are encouraged to connect with their instructors for alternative options.
  • For those international students who have returned home and are unable to return to Canada for the foreseeable future, please know that you will be able to continue your program onlinefrom your home country. This will be done in a variety of ways (e.g., recording of classes in the case of Zoom/WebEx calls), depending on the course and the method of instruction. According to current IRCC regulations, studying online for part of your program on an exceptional basis due to COVID-19 will not affect post-graduation work permit program eligibility. However, there are things to keep in mind. Click here for more information about distance learning and PGWPP eligibility

JSGS ONLINE EVENTS

  • Starting on April 1, the JSGS and its research centres will begin hosting a number of public webinars. Up first in the CSIP Research Forum series is Justin Longo’s talk on artificial intelligence in the Canadian public administration. Click here for more details. Please watch for notifications, as webinars will regularly be added to the JSGS Events calendar.
  • For MPP and PhD students, please be advised that watching an online webinar or a recorded presentation will now count towards your JSGS 990 seminar requirements.
  • We are also currently organizing a series of brown bag forums and alumni-led presentations for JSGS students. The first event, which is being held on March 31 from 12:00-1:00 p.m., will be led by Martin Boucher, Emmy Neuls, Tianna Yaskow and Jamie Mayoh-Bauche and will focus on how to learn online. Click here for more details.

KEEPING ENGAGED

  • As always, we encourage students to follow our social media channels and the JSGS-SA Facebook page. We will be issuing a number of condensed COVID-19-themed policy briefs over the coming weeks, and we appreciate your thoughts and encourage discussion on the recommendations presented.
  • The JSGS-SA has organized weekly Zoom sessions for students who want to connect, talk about what’s going on in your respective worlds, and ask questions if needed. Students from both Saskatoon and Regina are welcome to join. These Zoom calls will be held every Wednesday, starting April 1 until at least April 15, from 5-7 p.m. Saskatchewan time.
  • Also, please remember our weekly town hall meetings, every Monday.

Stay safe. Stay healthy.

Doug Moen, Ken Rasmussen and Murray Fulton 


March 20, 2020

Dear JSGS students,

This past Monday, each campus held a town hall meeting where many good questions were raised regarding classes, internships, and university-wide supports, in light of the changing landscape due to COVID-19. Although we don’t have all the answers yet, here is what we’ve learned so far:

ASSIGNMENT COMPLETION

  • Although we want to ensure that you can complete your program on schedule, we also understand the additional pressure you are under.
  • We have been in touch with all instructors and have requested that they give students extra flexibility in terms of assignment deadlines and class attendance. Please contact your instructors directly to discuss extensions.

MPP/PHD RESEARCH

  • Please continue to work with your supervisor to assess how you can engage in your research activities remotely.
  • Unless previously discussed with Amy Hassett and John Bird, all MPP and PhD defenses will proceed as scheduled by remote access (either Zoom or WebEx).

MPA CAPSTONE PRESENTATIONS

  • All MPA Capstone Presentations will proceed as scheduled. Please watch for further communication from your instructor.   

JSGS INTERNSHIP PROGRAM

  • Students who are currently registered in the Executive Internship program are expected to follow the protocols of their mentor organizations, whether that means coming into the office or working remotely.
  • The 2020-21 internships are currently proceeding as planned. Tianna Yaskow has spoken with many of the mentors, and they have indicated their willingness to proceed with having an intern.
  • All students who applied for an internship have been contacted. Those who are moving on in the process may experience a delay in hearing from their potential mentor as many of them are dealing with the COVID-19 situation. Should you have any specific questions about your internship, please contact Tianna Yaskow.
  • If you wish to speak to someone about the implications of the internship for your program, please reach out to Amy Hassett or John Bird.

WINTER 2020 COURSE SCHEDULE

  • All JSGS classes being offered this semester are going forward as scheduled. One of the key JSGS goals is to ensure that you finish your courses and your program.
  • Instructors are currently exploring different modes of delivering course content in an online/remote format. This may include discussion boards, written material, video recordings, and real-time Zoom or WebEx sessions. Instructors will be in contact with those registered in their classes, with more information and details regarding the delivery mode.
  • As classes move to an online/remote format, please be patient with the technology and the pace of the classes. We kindly ask that you practice understanding at all times in your classes.

SPRING/SUMMER 2020 COURSE SCHEDULES

  • The University of Saskatchewan announced today that Spring/Summer 2020 courses will proceed, but in an online (remote) delivery mode only. Although the University of Regina has yet to make a similar announcement, the JSGS will be moving its classes to an online/remote format for the upcoming semester.
  • With the exception of cancelling JSGS 853 Negotiations and Conflict Resolution, all other classes are being move to an online/remote format. For updated course schedules, visit https://www.schoolofpublicpolicy.sk.ca/students/course-information/course-schedule.php.

INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS

  • We understand that international students have many questions about the services and supports they can access. We have been in contact with central administration at both the University of Regina and the University of Saskatchewan to see what provisions are being put in place for international students. As soon as information becomes available, we will provide another update.
  • In the meantime, the Government of Canada has announced special measures to assist those here on study permits (see https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/services/coronavirus-special-measures.html | https://www.educanada.ca/media-medias/news-nouvelles/2020/2020-03-16.aspx?lang=eng). While specific information is not available, the Government appears to recognize the challenges that international students face.
  • For those international students who return home and are unable to return to Canada for the foreseeable future, please know that you will be able to continue your program online from your home country. This will be done in a variety of ways (e.g., recording of classes in the case of Zoom/WebEx calls), depending on the course and the method of instruction.
  • URInternational will continue to provide support and guidance wherever possible. The office can be reached at 306-585-5082, or email studentservices@uregina.ca.
  • USask’s International Student and Study Abroad Centre (ISSAC) will be offering support remotely and will provide guidance and support wherever possible. ISSAC staff can be reached at students@usask.ca.
  • Also, please continue reaching out to Amy Hassett or John Bird, or any other faculty or staff member. We are all here to support you.

USASK RESIDENCES

  • The University’s current plan is to keep its residences open for students wishing to stay on campus. For those out-of-town students wishing and able to return home, you can do so and refunds are available. To receive this rental fee adjustment, residents need to complete a Notice to Vacateform and submit it to the Residence Services by March 20.

PINNING CEREMONY

  • We will be postponing the 2020 JSGS Pinning Ceremony that was originally scheduled for March 31, 2020. At this time, we are hopeful that we will be able to reschedule the ceremony to the fall. We will be in touch with you over the summer months with further information, including information on how to receive your alumni pin if you are unable to attend the ceremony.

DIEFENBAKER BUILDING CLOSURE

  • You may have seen the update from the University of Saskatchewan yesterday regarding further restrictions on campus. The expectation of the university’s announcement is that by March 23, all non-core USask employees still working on campus will have made the transition to work remotely.
  • JSGS will abide by this policy – as of Monday, March 23, all of our staff and faculty will be working off-site. They continue to be available during the core operating hours and can be contacted through the usual channels.
  • Since staff and faculty will not be on-site, the Diefenbaker Building will be closed to everyone—faculty, staff, students and the public.
  • The University’s core operations continue and are open to students who need to be on campus to access services to complete their academic programs. Currently, the Murray Library is open 8:00 am – 5:00 pm during weekdays. The campus is immediately closed to public visitors. Only faculty, staff, contractors, and deliveries critical to core operations will be allowed on campus until further notice. In addition, please note that access to many buildings and facilities on campus will be limited or closed due to the preventative measures taken in recent days to protect the health and safety of the University community. A list of university buildings that are closed is available here.

JSGS TOWN HALL MEETINGS

  • Consistency and routine can help to create a feeling of normalcy in uncertain times. The school has organized weekly town hall meetings for students every Monday, where you can connect with faculty, staff and students via Zoom. The USask and U of R sessions will be held consecutively so that you may join both, if you so wish. Please use these sessions to raise any concerns or provide feedback.
  • An email reminder will be sent out on Monday morning with the two Zoom links.
  • We also encourage you to contact Amy Hassett or John Bird directly for support if you don’t feel comfortable raising an issue in these sessions.

INSTITUTIONAL AND REGIONAL RESOURCES AND SUPPORTS

  • Remember, your mental health is just as important as your physical health. Please seek out other people and additional supports if you are feeling particularly vulnerable during these times.
  • USask Student Wellness Centre | Students can contact the Student Wellness Centre via email wellness@usask.ca or by phone at 306-966-5768. Campus Security is also available at 306-966-5555 for urgent situations.
  • U of R Counselling Services | Students can contact Counselling Services Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., at 306-585-4491. After office hours contact: Mobile Crisis - 306-757-0127. Campus Security is also available 24 /7 and can reached at 306-585-4999.
  • Other supports include

SOCIAL SUPPORTS

  • Although we need to continue practice safe social distancing, you will need social interaction and we encourage you to do so safely by phone or other online platforms.
  • Amanda Wilcox (JSGS Student Association President in Regina) has taken initiative to organize an open Zoom chat for all those who wish to connect. Manreet Kaur Nehal (JSGS Student Association President in Saskatoon) will also be joining. There won’t be an agenda, but it will give you an opportunity to connect with one another. For more information on this, please visit the JSGS-SA Facebook page or reach out directly to Amanda Wilcox or Manreet Kaur Nehal (via the JSGS Student Association email addresses).
  • Other suggestions for what you can do while practicing safe social distancing include:
    • Grabbing a cup of coffee and connecting with a friend online.
    • Reading an article or book, or watching movie, and having a group chat to discuss the findings and/or plot.
    • Going for a walk.
    • Practicing meditation or yo­ga. Many how-to sources are available online.

We also want to let you all know that staff and faculty have been urged by both the University of Regina and the University of Saskatchewan to work from home for the foreseeable future. While they will not be physically in the office, they are still working and we encourage you to connect with them by email, phone, zoom or WebEx. 

Remember, we are here to support you.

Doug Moen & Murray Fulton     


March 16, 2020

Dear JSGS students,

The health and safety of our students, staff, faculty, and all those who visit the Diefenbaker Building are our priority. In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the Diefenbaker Building is now closed on a temporary basis to the general public and will be locked at all times.

While it is recommended that in-person meetings and group activities be minimized, the University of Saskatchewan campus remains open (with classes being offered only in an online/remote format). This means that students have the option of continuing to use spaces in the Diefenbaker Building (and other places on campus that are open). However, you will need to have your key to access the building.

During this time, we encourage you to practice the following community-based safety measures: 

  • When possible, keep 2m (6ft) of distance between you and other people and avoid shaking hands and hugging.
  • Avoid crowded places if possible.

Additionally, the School’s in-person operations have been temporarily reduced as many of the staff and faculty will be working remotely. However, our priority is to continue to support students. Please email Amy Hassett, Emmy Neuls, your course instructor, or Murray Fulton with any questions or concerns.

Thank you for your continued patience and flexibility.

Murray Fulton, Director
USask campus


March 14, 2020

Dear students,

As you all know, things are moving very quickly around COVID-19, especially now that two cases have been reported in Saskatchewan.

Our priority remains the same—the health, safety and well-being of our students, staff, and faculty. We want to make sure that students continue to receive high quality instruction and support, and are able to complete their courses and programs with as little disruption as possible.

The University of Saskatchewan (USask) has announced the suspension of classes from Monday, March 16 through Wednesday, March 18, while the University of Regina (U of R) has announced the suspension of classes from Monday, March 16 through Thursday, March 19. Courses would then resume after the suspensions in an online/remote format.

In light of these announcements, JSGS will be moving to online/remote delivery for the remainder of the winter term beginning on Monday, March 16. Beginning on Monday, students will not be required to come to campus. Since each instructor will deal with the announced changes in a different way, please watch for messages from your instructor for details on what will be required in each of your courses. We ask for your patience as we make the transition.

With regards to students currently registered in JSGS 850: JSGS Internship Program, please continue following the workplace instructions provided by your mentor organization. We kindly ask that you keep Tianna Yaskow informed of any changes.

The universities have also announced the cancellation of all non-essential events on and off campus that are not directly tied to the academic progress of students. This includes third party events and activities that have been booked to occur on either campus. This directive applies to the JSGS, and we regret to inform you that the upcoming JSGS-SAS networking event and Crystal Meth Epidemic panel discussion on March 25 and the Tansley Lecture on April 2 have been cancelled. More information will be provided next week regarding the various events that will be cancelled or postponed over the coming months.

During this time, we encourage you to practice the following community-based safety measures: 

  • When possible, keep 2m (6ft) of distance between you and other people, and avoid shaking hands and hugging.
  • Minimize in-person meetings and group activities; use phone, teleconference and other technologies for meetings.
  • Evaluate the need for bringing in outside people to campus; cancel, reschedule or using other methods for the meeting or activity.
  • Avoid crowded places if possible.

We are aware that you are under immense pressure for many reasons, and the uncertainty surrounding COVID-19 may add to your stress. If you have concerns, please reach out to your instructor, Amy Hassett, and/or Murray Fulton. We are here to support you.

For those of you who have questions, we are hosting an online Question and Answer session on Monday, March 16 from 12:00-1:00 p.m. An email will go out Monday morning with details.

The University of Saskatchewan continues to monitor the coronavirus outbreak, and institutional updates can be found online at USask COVID-19.

For up-to-date and accurate information regarding the outbreak, symptoms and treatment, prevention and risks, and for a variety of resources, visit Government of Canada Updates

In the meantime, we strongly recommend that you continue to take precautions to help prevent illness and transmission:

  • Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Sneeze into your sleeve or elbow and throw away soiled tissues as soon as possible, followed by hand washing.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth.
  • Stay home if you are sick.
  • Make sure that your vaccinations are up-to-date.
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick.

Yours truly,

Doug Moen and Murray Fulton


March 12, 2020

Dear students,

You have no doubt been following the COVID-19 story as it unfolds around the world and have questions about what might happen at the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School. We wanted to let you know that JSGS faculty and staff are closely monitoring the COVID-19 outbreak and are committed to providing you with regular updates on what we are and will be doing in response. As of right now, the public health risk associated with COVID-19 is low for the general population in Canada and business remains as usual. However, the situation is changing rapidly, and we may be required to change what we are doing. 

If we are required to make changes (e.g., many universities in the United States are moving their courses online), our top priority is the health and safety of our students, staff, and faculty. We also want to make sure that students continue to receive high quality instruction and support and are able to complete their courses and programs.

To these ends, the JSGS is actively working on a contingency plan. This plan includes the possibility of moving in-person courses to an online-delivery format until the COVID-19 threat has passed. If any changes are made to the delivery format, you will be notified as soon as possible. Please note that we may be required to make some of the changes very quickly, so be prepared if this were to happen.

The JSGS will also consider cancelling events that bring together large groups of people; this decision will be made on a case-by-case basis based on the latest advice from the Saskatchewan Health Authority and the Public Health Agency of Canada.

Additionally, for those of you who may be wondering about the hygiene of our physical space, the custodians are disinfecting common touch points, such as entrances, door knobs, all areas within washrooms, and handrails and communal gathering spaces. Nevertheless, you are strongly encouraged to practice good handwashing hygiene and sneezing etiquette. As well, please make yourself aware of the COVID-19 symptoms and take the appropriate steps to secure your own safety.

We know you are likely to have questions. Thus, we will be hosting a Question and Answer session on both campuses next week (details will be provided shortly). An option will be made available for those who wish to connect via Zoom. If, for any reason, you wish to speak to someone in person, please contact Amy Hassett or John Bird to arrange a one-on-one meeting.

The University of Saskatchewan and the University of Regina are monitoring the coronavirus situation, and institutional updates can be found online at USask COVID-19 or U of R COVID-19.

For up-to-date and accurate information regarding the outbreak, symptoms and treatment, prevention and risks, and for a variety of resources, visit Government of Canada Updates.  

Thanks for giving the information in this letter your utmost attention. COVID-19 will have a major impact on the world and it is important that we all find a way to deal with its repercussions in a way that is thoughtful and considerate.

Yours truly,

Doug Moen, Murray Fulton and Ken Rasmussen

April 8, 2020

Dear JSGS students, 

We understand that there have been many personal consequences as a result of COVID-19 pandemic, and one of these may be financial hardship. We have established the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy (JSGS) Emergency Bursary Program, which is a modest fund available to assist JSGS students at both campuses who may need temporary help on an emergency basis due to circumstances caused by the COVID‑19 pandemic. This special program will be available only for the period deemed appropriate by JSGS. Funds for the JSGS Emergency Bursary Program are provided and managed jointly by JSGS at the University of Regina and University of Saskatchewan campuses.

The JSGS Emergency Bursary Program is intended to bridge a financial gap that would otherwise impede a student’s ability to complete their studies. Students can apply for emergency funding of up to $2,000 at one time, although approval is not guaranteed.

To be eligible to apply, the applicant must be actively registered and enrolled in a JSGS program or be on approved academic leave (this includes the spring/summer academic break for students in the MPA program at the USask campus). Students in all JSGS programs are eligible to apply for support. For GENI students, those with USask as their home institution are eligible to apply.

JSGS students experiencing financial hardship who wish to apply for an emergency bursary can complete the application form and email it (together with the required supporting documentation) to jsgs-bursary@usask.ca. Any questions about the application or process can also be sent to that email. The first round of applications will be reviewed on April 17, 2020, and must be submitted by April 16 at 3:00 p.m. Applications submitted after this date will be reviewed on a rolling basis.

There are also other emergency funding sources available that we encourage you to explore: 

In addition to the above funding sources, USask has extended the tuition and fee payment deadlines for the 2020 spring and summer terms. The tuition deadlines are now June 2 (2020 Spring term) and August 3 (2020 Summer term). For more information on how to pay, or to learn about the Graduate Student Tuition Instalment Plan, visit https://students.usask.ca/money/tuition-fees/pay.php.

Take care.

Doug Moen, Ken Rasmussen and Murray Fulton

 


April 2, 2020

Dear students,

Now in our third week of the COVID-19 outbreak here in Saskatchewan, we are shifting from crisis response and management to medium-term planning. 

The campus-specific weekly town hall meetings have been a great way for us to connect with and hear from you on important matters. However, as issues are being addressed and new information has become available through our two universities and government bodies, it has become clear that we no longer need one town hall meeting per campus. As a result, starting April 6 and until further notice, the JSGS will be moving to a single combined student town hall meeting from 12-1pm (Saskatchewan time) (https://zoom.us/j/656051946). This session is open to all JSGS students.

PASS/FAIL VS. NUMERICAL GRADE

As many of you aware, there has been discussion at the two universities recently about moving to a pass/fail versus numerical grading system. Here is a brief overview of the two institutions’ decisions, and how they will affect you as a JSGS student:

  • University of Saskatchewan (USask) – With a few exceptions (Law is one and they require students to choose the Pass/Fail option before they take their exams), the University of Saskatchewan, including the JSGS, has decided to keep the numerical grading system
  • University of Regina (U of R) – The U of R is providing students with four approved options for final grades for the Winter 2020 semester. On a class-by-class basis, students can choose which option best suits them. The options, which are irreversible once chosen, are:
    • Traditional numeric grading
    • Course withdrawal – the U of R has extended the course withdrawal deadline to coincide with the final day of classes (Thursday, April 9). Students chosen this option would avoid a failing grade and therefore a negative impact on your GPA.
    • CRC (Credit-COVID-19) – for students who pass a course, but who experience stressors that have negatively impacted their academic performance. This option is considered a credit/pass, will not impact GPA, can be used in degree completion requirements, but may have some impact on eligibility for funding or financial awards. The deadline to select this option is May 31, 2020.
    • NCC (No Credit-COVID-19) – for students who receiving a failing numerical grade and request to replace it so as it preserve their academic standing. Students who do not pass a course due to failure to complete a final exam or other component of the course, will not be eligible for “NCC”. This option does not impact GPA and does not count towards degree completion. The deadline to select this option is May 31, 2020.
  • JSGS students are bound by the regulations of the campus at which they are enrolled.
    • For example, if a JSGS U of R student is taking a USask class, they can submit a request to the U of R graduate chair (i.e. Ken Rasmussen) to have their grade changed as outlined above.
    • JSGS USask students taking a U of R class must accept the traditional numeric grade given to them by their instructor.
  • JSGS is a graduate school—with both professional and research-based programs—and we strongly recommend that students from the U of R campus select the traditional numeric grading option as this is an important element of your degree. We encourage you to attend the next town hall meeting on Monday, should you have further questions about this.

EXTENSIONS

  • We understand that there has been some confusion around extensions. We will be reaching out to all instructors again to ensure they are aware of options available. Please contact your instructors directly to discuss what might be the best route for you, if you feel an extension is needed.

884 CAPSTONE PRESENTATIONS (USask campus)

  • We have heard that a few students are nervous about presenting their 884 capstone presentations via Zoom. It is natural to be worried about using a medium with which you are unfamiliar; therefore, we highly recommend that you sign up for a free Zoom account and run through your presentation with a friend or fellow student.

JSGS INTERNSHIPS

  • Placing interns is an ongoing process. Tianna is working with the mentors to ensure the process is moving forward. The COVID-19 situation has affected the 2020-21 mentors in different ways, which means some are slower to respond than others. Please be assured that we are working to move the placements forward so that interns know where they will be placed for the upcoming year.

UPCOMING ONLINE EVENTS

 OTHER

  • USask University Library - Although the University Library’s physical spaces are closed, staff are working remotely to assist students and faculty with their academic and research needs. Please visit the library website for updates, a listing of current library services, and to check out the new research guide: https://libguides.usask.ca/libraryupdates
  • The U of R has transitioned to online library services. Subject librarians are available to students over email and Zoom. There have also been changes to borrowing practices and timelines. For more information on online resources and practices, see https://uregina.libguides.com/covid-19/.

STAYING CONNECTED

Take care,

Doug Moen, Ken Rasmussen and Murray Fulton 


March 26, 2020

Dear students,

Thanks to all of you who joined us on Monday for the online town hall meeting. We are glad to see that many of you are adjusting to the new circumstances, and we continue to welcome your feedback as we navigate this changing situation. Regarding some of your questions, here is what we have learned so far: 

STUDENT RESIDENCES/ACCOMMODATIONS

  • At the University of Saskatchewan, students remaining in residence and living in Voyageur Place (dorm-style units) are being moved into apartment-style units to abide by proper social distancing protocol. USask Culinary Services will be providing emergency hampers only for students who are quarantined due to recent travel or due to symptoms associated with COVID-19. Students who have a remaining meal balance on their accounts will have the option to extend the expiry date of their plan or get a refund so that they can purchase their own groceries. 
  • Students living in residence at the University of Regina will not be required to move out of their accommodations. For those who do wish to move off campus, the U of R is waiving all regular cancellation fees and providing pro-rated refunds. For the foreseeable future, U of R Food Services will remain open with a take-out option.

INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS

  • If an international student cannot/prefers not to return home right now, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has announced special measures to help temporary and permanent residents, including those here on study permits and affected by service disruptions due to the novel coronavirus. IRCC has published a website providing detailed information including updated processes on how you can apply to extend your stay in Canada if needed.
  • Currently, international students are not eligible for financial assistance from the Canadian government, such as government student loans or Employment Insurance. That said, international students may be eligible for bank loans but must have a co-signer who is either a Canadian or a permanent resident.
  • International students remaining in Canada should consult their embassy for advice and guidance on what supports their governments can provide.

FINANCIAL SUPPORTS

  • The Government of Canada has suspended federal student loan repayments, effective March 30 and lasting until September 30, 2020. This loan repayment break will be automatic, and students won’t be required to apply for the payment pause.
  • All USask and U of R financial supports that were available before the COVID-19 outbreak remain open to students.
  • USask students experiencing an unexpected financial crisis should contact Student Central to access the Nasser Family Emergency Student Trust at askus@usask.ca or 1-306-966-1212 or 1-877-650-1212.
  • In regards to tuition, students should be aware of the general rules for late payment. At USask, if funds are not paid by the deadline, a hold will go on the student’s account. The hold remains until the account reaches zero. At the U of R, tuition and fees are due on the first day of classes. However, the university does allow a grace period before late payment charges are added to the account. Please refer to the current Academic Schedule for the end of penalty-free payment date. Late payment charges are applied at 1.5% of the outstanding balance per month.
  • At USask, graduate students may sign up for a Graduate Student Tuition Instalment plan to pay their tuition fees with monthly pre-authorized payments. The U of R does not offer payment plans for tuition.

HEALTH AND WELLBEING

CONVOCATION

  • In line with federal and provincial requirements regarding COVID-19 prevention, and supporting the University of Saskatchewan’s and the University of Regina’s decisions to close both campuses to public visitors until further notice, Spring 2020 Convocation ceremonies have been postponed at USask and cancelled at the U of R. However, degrees will still be conferred in June to graduating students, but through alternative means. More information about what this will look like will be made available as soon as possible.

MPP/PHD RESEARCH

  • Social distancing practices are essential in order to curtail the spread of the virus in the wide variety of spaces where we conduct research. In light of this, you may need to postpone your research or change your methodology (e.g. changing in-person interviews to phone or Zoom interviews, etc.). Please discuss different options with your supervisor.
  • Research sponsors, including the tri-agencies, are well aware that the COVID-19 pandemic can affect funded research projects in many ways. In addition to existing mechanisms for addressing exceptional circumstances, the tri-agencies are actively assessing the issues and will be sharing further information. Please visit their respective websites for regular updates:
  • For research-based students at the U of R, the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research has released modified thesis guidelines to accommodate students during this period. For a student who submits a ready-to-defend thesis before April 15, 2020 and will defend no later than May 31, 2020, the tuition fee for spring/summer semester will be waived. If the ready-to-defend thesis is not submitted by April 15 and defended by May 31, students will be required to register for Spring/Summer 2020.

WITHDRAWAL DEADLINES

  • The withdrawal deadline for the USask 2020 Winter Term has been moved to the last day of classes (April 7).
  • The withdrawal deadline for the U of R 2020 Winter Term has passed. Please note that the last day of classes for the 2020 Winter term is April 9.

ONLINE/REMOTE COURSE DELIVERY AND ACCESS

  • Thank you to all students who have provided feedback on the new Zoom-delivery format. Faculty are adjusting to this new teaching approach, and we greatly appreciate your patience as we fine tune the technology on our end.
  • We recognize the current challenges you are under, and it is our goal to support you through this time so that you can complete your program on schedule. If you need an extension, please talk to your instructor.
  • Students who do not have access to computers in their off-campus locations are encouraged to connect with their instructors for alternative options.
  • For those international students who have returned home and are unable to return to Canada for the foreseeable future, please know that you will be able to continue your program onlinefrom your home country. This will be done in a variety of ways (e.g., recording of classes in the case of Zoom/WebEx calls), depending on the course and the method of instruction. According to current IRCC regulations, studying online for part of your program on an exceptional basis due to COVID-19 will not affect post-graduation work permit program eligibility. However, there are things to keep in mind. Click here for more information about distance learning and PGWPP eligibility

JSGS ONLINE EVENTS

  • Starting on April 1, the JSGS and its research centres will begin hosting a number of public webinars. Up first in the CSIP Research Forum series is Justin Longo’s talk on artificial intelligence in the Canadian public administration. Click here for more details. Please watch for notifications, as webinars will regularly be added to the JSGS Events calendar.
  • For MPP and PhD students, please be advised that watching an online webinar or a recorded presentation will now count towards your JSGS 990 seminar requirements.
  • We are also currently organizing a series of brown bag forums and alumni-led presentations for JSGS students. The first event, which is being held on March 31 from 12:00-1:00 p.m., will be led by Martin Boucher, Emmy Neuls, Tianna Yaskow and Jamie Mayoh-Bauche and will focus on how to learn online. Click here for more details.

KEEPING ENGAGED

  • As always, we encourage students to follow our social media channels and the JSGS-SA Facebook page. We will be issuing a number of condensed COVID-19-themed policy briefs over the coming weeks, and we appreciate your thoughts and encourage discussion on the recommendations presented.
  • The JSGS-SA has organized weekly Zoom sessions for students who want to connect, talk about what’s going on in your respective worlds, and ask questions if needed. Students from both Saskatoon and Regina are welcome to join. These Zoom calls will be held every Wednesday, starting April 1 until at least April 15, from 5-7 p.m. Saskatchewan time.
  • Also, please remember our weekly town hall meetings, every Monday.

Stay safe. Stay healthy.

Doug Moen, Ken Rasmussen and Murray Fulton 


March 20, 2020

Dear JSGS students,

This past Monday, each campus held a town hall meeting where many good questions were raised regarding classes, internships, and university-wide supports, in light of the changing landscape due to COVID-19. Although we don’t have all the answers yet, here is what we’ve learned so far:

ASSIGNMENT COMPLETION

  • Although we want to ensure that you can complete your program on schedule, we also understand the additional pressure you are under.
  • We have been in touch with all instructors and have requested that they give students extra flexibility in terms of assignment deadlines and class attendance. Please contact your instructors directly to discuss extensions.

MPP/PHD RESEARCH

  • Please continue to work with your supervisor to assess how you can engage in your research activities remotely.
  • Unless previously discussed with Amy Hassett and John Bird, all MPP and PhD defenses will proceed as scheduled by remote access (either Zoom or WebEx).

MPA CAPSTONE PRESENTATIONS

  • All MPA Capstone Presentations will proceed as scheduled. Please watch for further communication from your instructor.   

JSGS INTERNSHIP PROGRAM

  • Students who are currently registered in the Executive Internship program are expected to follow the protocols of their mentor organizations, whether that means coming into the office or working remotely.
  • The 2020-21 internships are currently proceeding as planned. Tianna Yaskow has spoken with many of the mentors, and they have indicated their willingness to proceed with having an intern.
  • All students who applied for an internship have been contacted. Those who are moving on in the process may experience a delay in hearing from their potential mentor as many of them are dealing with the COVID-19 situation. Should you have any specific questions about your internship, please contact Tianna Yaskow.
  • If you wish to speak to someone about the implications of the internship for your program, please reach out to Amy Hassett or John Bird.

WINTER 2020 COURSE SCHEDULE

  • All JSGS classes being offered this semester are going forward as scheduled. One of the key JSGS goals is to ensure that you finish your courses and your program.
  • Instructors are currently exploring different modes of delivering course content in an online/remote format. This may include discussion boards, written material, video recordings, and real-time Zoom or WebEx sessions. Instructors will be in contact with those registered in their classes, with more information and details regarding the delivery mode.
  • As classes move to an online/remote format, please be patient with the technology and the pace of the classes. We kindly ask that you practice understanding at all times in your classes.

SPRING/SUMMER 2020 COURSE SCHEDULES

  • The University of Saskatchewan announced today that Spring/Summer 2020 courses will proceed, but in an online (remote) delivery mode only. Although the University of Regina has yet to make a similar announcement, the JSGS will be moving its classes to an online/remote format for the upcoming semester.
  • With the exception of cancelling JSGS 853 Negotiations and Conflict Resolution, all other classes are being move to an online/remote format. For updated course schedules, visit https://www.schoolofpublicpolicy.sk.ca/students/course-information/course-schedule.php.

INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS

  • We understand that international students have many questions about the services and supports they can access. We have been in contact with central administration at both the University of Regina and the University of Saskatchewan to see what provisions are being put in place for international students. As soon as information becomes available, we will provide another update.
  • In the meantime, the Government of Canada has announced special measures to assist those here on study permits (see https://www.canada.ca/en/immigration-refugees-citizenship/services/coronavirus-special-measures.html | https://www.educanada.ca/media-medias/news-nouvelles/2020/2020-03-16.aspx?lang=eng). While specific information is not available, the Government appears to recognize the challenges that international students face.
  • For those international students who return home and are unable to return to Canada for the foreseeable future, please know that you will be able to continue your program online from your home country. This will be done in a variety of ways (e.g., recording of classes in the case of Zoom/WebEx calls), depending on the course and the method of instruction.
  • URInternational will continue to provide support and guidance wherever possible. The office can be reached at 306-585-5082, or email studentservices@uregina.ca.
  • USask’s International Student and Study Abroad Centre (ISSAC) will be offering support remotely and will provide guidance and support wherever possible. ISSAC staff can be reached at students@usask.ca.
  • Also, please continue reaching out to Amy Hassett or John Bird, or any other faculty or staff member. We are all here to support you.

PINNING CEREMONY

  • We will be postponing the 2020 JSGS Pinning Ceremony that was originally being planned for March. At this time, we are hopeful that we will be able to reschedule the ceremony to the fall. We will be in touch with you over the summer months with further information, including information on how to receive your alumni pin if you are unable to attend the ceremony.

GRADUATE PHOTOS

  • At this time and until further notice, the graduation photography sessions have been cancelled. We will let you know as soon as they can be re-scheduled.

JSGS TOWN HALL MEETINGS

  • Consistency and routine can help to create a feeling of normalcy in uncertain times. The school has organized weekly town hall meetings for students every Monday, where you can connect with faculty, staff and students via Zoom. The USask and U of R sessions will be held consecutively so that you may join both, if you so wish. Please use these sessions to raise any concerns or provide feedback.
  • An email reminder will be sent out on Monday morning with the two Zoom links.
  • We also encourage you to contact Amy Hassett or John Bird directly for support if you don’t feel comfortable raising an issue in these sessions.

INSTITUTIONAL AND REGIONAL RESOURCES AND SUPPORTS

  • Remember, your mental health is just as important as your physical health. Please seek out other people and additional supports if you are feeling particularly vulnerable during these times.
  • USask Student Wellness Centre | Students can contact the Student Wellness Centre via email wellness@usask.ca or by phone at 306-966-5768. Campus Security is also available at 306-966-5555 for urgent situations.
  • U of R Counselling Services | Students can contact Counselling Services Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., at 306-585-4491. After office hours contact: Mobile Crisis - 306-757-0127. Campus Security is also available 24 /7 and can reached at 306-585-4999.
  • Other supports include

SOCIAL SUPPORTS

  • Although we need to continue practice safe social distancing, you will need social interaction and we encourage you to do so safely by phone or other online platforms.
  • Amanda Wilcox (JSGS Student Association President in Regina) has taken initiative to organize an open Zoom chat for all those who wish to connect. Manreet Kaur Nehal (JSGS Student Association President in Saskatoon) will also be joining. There won’t be an agenda, but it will give you an opportunity to connect with one another. For more information on this, please visit the JSGS-SA Facebook page or reach out directly to Amanda Wilcox or Manreet Kaur Nehal (via the JSGS Student Association email addresses).
  • Other suggestions for what you can do while practicing safe social distancing include:
    • Grabbing a cup of coffee and connecting with a friend online.
    • Reading an article or book, or watching movie, and having a group chat to discuss the findings and/or plot.
    • Going for a walk.
    • Practicing meditation or yoga. Many how-to sources are available online.

We also want to let you all know that staff and faculty have been urged by both the University of Regina and the University of Saskatchewan to work from home for the foreseeable future. While they will not be physically in the office, they are still working and we encourage you to connect with them by email, phone, zoom or WebEx. 

Remember, we are here to support you.

Doug Moen & Ken Rasmussen    


March 14, 2020

Dear students,

As you all know, things are moving very quickly around COVID-19, especially now that two cases have been reported in Saskatchewan.

Our priority remains the same—the health, safety and well-being of our students, staff, and faculty. We want to make sure that students continue to receive high quality instruction and support, and are able to complete their courses and programs with as little disruption as possible.

The University of Regina (U of R) has announced the suspension of classes from Monday, March 16 through Thursday, March 19, while the University of Saskatchewan (USask) has announced the suspension of classes from Monday, March 16 through Wednesday, March 18. Courses would then resume after the suspensions in an online/remote format.

In light of these announcements, JSGS will be moving to online/remote delivery for the remainder of the winter term beginning on Monday, March 16. Beginning on Monday, students will not be required to come to campus. Since each instructor will deal with the announced changes in a different way, please watch for messages from your instructor for details on what will be required in each of your courses. We ask for your patience as we make the transition.

With regards to students currently registered in JSGS 850: JSGS Internship Program, please continue following the workplace instructions provided by your mentor organization. We kindly ask that you keep Tianna Yaskow informed of any changes.

Furthermore, the universities have announced the cancellation of all non-essential events on and off campus that are not directly tied to the academic progress of students. This includes third party events and activities that have been booked to occur on either campus. This directive applies to the JSGS, and we regret to inform you that the Tansley Lecture on April 2 has been cancelled. More information will be provided next week regarding the various events that will be cancelled or postponed over the coming months.

During this time, we encourage you to practice the following community-based safety measures: 

  • When possible, keep 2m (6ft) of distance between you and other people, and avoid shaking hands and hugging.
  • Minimize in-person meetings and group activities; use phone, teleconference and other technologies for meetings.
  • Evaluate the need for bringing in outside people to campus; cancel, reschedule or using other methods for the meeting or activity.
  • Avoid crowded places if possible.

We are aware that you are under immense pressure for many reasons, and the uncertainty surrounding COVID-19 may add to your stress. If you have concerns, please reach out to your instructor, John Bird, and/or Ken Rasmussen. We are here to support you.

For those of you who have questions, we are hosting an online Question and Answer session on Monday, March 16 from 12:00-1:00 p.m. An email will go out Monday morning with details.

The University of Regina continues to monitor the coronavirus outbreak, and institutional updates can be found online at U of R COVID-19.

For up-to-date and accurate information regarding the outbreak, symptoms and treatment, prevention and risks, and for a variety of resources, visit Government of Canada Updates

In the meantime, we strongly recommend that you continue to take precautions to help prevent illness and transmission:

  • Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Sneeze into your sleeve or elbow and throw away soiled tissues as soon as possible, followed by hand washing.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth.
  • Stay home if you are sick.
  • Make sure that your vaccinations are up-to-date.
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick.

Yours truly,

Doug Moen and Ken Rasmussen


March 12, 2020

Dear students,

You have no doubt been following the COVID-19 story as it unfolds around the world and have questions about what might happen at the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School. We wanted to let you know that JSGS faculty and staff are closely monitoring the COVID-19 outbreak and are committed to providing you with regular updates on what we are and will be doing in response. As of right now, the public health risk associated with COVID-19 is low for the general population in Canada and business remains as usual. However, the situation is changing rapidly, and we may be required to change what we are doing. 

If we are required to make changes (e.g., many universities in the United States are moving their courses online), our top priority is the health and safety of our students, staff, and faculty. We also want to make sure that students continue to receive high quality instruction and support and are able to complete their courses and programs.

To these ends, the JSGS is actively working on a contingency plan. This plan includes the possibility of moving in-person courses to an online-delivery format until the COVID-19 threat has passed. If any changes are made to the delivery format, you will be notified as soon as possible. Please note that we may be required to make some of the changes very quickly, so be prepared if this were to happen.

The JSGS will also consider cancelling events that bring together large groups of people; this decision will be made on a case-by-case basis based on the latest advice from the Saskatchewan Health Authority and the Public Health Agency of Canada.

Additionally, for those of you who may be wondering about the hygiene of our physical space, the custodians are disinfecting common touch points, such as entrances, door knobs, all areas within washrooms, and handrails and communal gathering spaces. Nevertheless, you are strongly encouraged to practice good handwashing hygiene and sneezing etiquette. As well, please make yourself aware of the COVID-19 symptoms and take the appropriate steps to secure your own safety.

We know you are likely to have questions. Thus, we will be hosting a Question and Answer session on both campuses next week (details will be provided shortly). An option will be made available for those who wish to connect via Zoom. If, for any reason, you wish to speak to someone in person, please contact Amy Hassett or John Bird to arrange a one-on-one meeting.

The University of Saskatchewan and the University of Regina are monitoring the coronavirus situation, and institutional updates can be found online at USask COVID-19 or U of R COVID-19.

For up-to-date and accurate information regarding the outbreak, symptoms and treatment, prevention and risks, and for a variety of resources, visit Government of Canada Updates.  

Thanks for giving the information in this letter your utmost attention. COVID-19 will have a major impact on the world and it is important that we all find a way to deal with its repercussions in a way that is thoughtful and considerate.

Yours truly,

Doug Moen, Murray Fulton and Ken Rasmussen

April 8, 2020

Dear JSGS students, 

We understand that there have been many personal consequences as a result of COVID-19 pandemic, and one of these may be financial hardship. We have established the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy (JSGS) Emergency Bursary Program, which is a modest fund available to assist JSGS students at both campuses who may need temporary help on an emergency basis due to circumstances caused by the COVID‑19 pandemic. This special program will be available only for the period deemed appropriate by JSGS. Funds for the JSGS Emergency Bursary Program are provided and managed jointly by JSGS at the University of Regina and University of Saskatchewan campuses.

The JSGS Emergency Bursary Program is intended to bridge a financial gap that would otherwise impede a student’s ability to complete their studies. Students can apply for emergency funding of up to $2,000 at one time, although approval is not guaranteed.

To be eligible to apply, the applicant must be actively registered and enrolled in a JSGS program or be on approved academic leave (this includes the spring/summer academic break for students in the MPA program at the USask campus). Students in all JSGS programs are eligible to apply for support. For GENI students, those with USask as their home institution are eligible to apply.

JSGS students experiencing financial hardship who wish to apply for an emergency bursary can complete the application form and email it (together with the required supporting documentation) to jsgs-bursary@usask.ca. Any questions about the application or process can also be sent to that email. The first round of applications will be reviewed on April 17, 2020, and must be submitted by April 16 at 3:00 p.m. Applications submitted after this date will be reviewed on a rolling basis.

There are also other emergency funding sources available that we encourage you to explore: 

In addition to the above funding sources, USask has extended the tuition and fee payment deadlines for the 2020 spring and summer terms. The tuition deadlines are now June 2 (2020 Spring term) and August 3 (2020 Summer term). For more information on how to pay, or to learn about the Graduate Student Tuition Instalment Plan, visit https://students.usask.ca/money/tuition-fees/pay.php.

Take care.

Doug Moen, Ken Rasmussen and Murray Fulton

 


March 27, 2020

Dear students,

Thanks to all of you who continue to provide us with updates regarding your current situations and your progress in your online program. We just want to provide you with a few updates that might be relevant to your situation:

FINANCIAL SUPPORTS

  • The Government of Canada has suspended federal student loan repayments, effective March 30 and lasting until September 30, 2020. This loan repayment break will be automatic, and students won’t be required to apply for the payment pause.
  • All USask financial supports that were available before the COVID-19 outbreak remain open to students.
  • USask students experiencing an unexpected financial crisis should contact Student Central to access the Nasser Family Emergency Student Trust at askus@usask.ca or 1-306-966-1212 or 1-877-650-1212.
  • In regards to tuition, students should be aware of the general rules for late payment. At USask, if funds are not paid by the deadline, a hold will go on the student’s account. The hold remains until the account reaches zero. At the U of R, tuition and fees are due on the first day of classes. However, the university does allow a grace period before late payment charges are added to the account. Please refer to the current Academic Schedule for the end of penalty-free payment date. Late payment charges are applied at 1.5% of the outstanding balance per month.
  • At USask, graduate students may sign up for a Graduate Student Tuition Instalment plan to pay their tuition fees with monthly pre-authorized payments. The U of R does not offer payment plans for tuition.

WITHDRAWAL DEADLINES

  • The withdrawal deadline for the USask 2020 Winter Term has been moved to the last day of classes (April 7).

ONLINE/REMOTE COURSE DELIVERY

  • We recognize the current challenges you are under, and it is our goal to support you through this time so that you can complete your program on schedule. If you need an extension, please talk to your instructor.

JSGS ONLINE EVENTS

  • Starting on April 1, the JSGS and its research centres will begin hosting a number of public webinars. Up first in the CSIP Research Forum series is Justin Longo’s talk on artificial intelligence in the Canadian public administration. Click here for more details. Please watch for notifications, as webinars will regularly be added to the JSGS Events calendar.
  • We are also currently organizing a series of brown bag forums and alumni-led presentations for JSGS students. The first event, which is being held on March 31 from 12:00-1:00 p.m., will be led by Martin Boucher, Emmy Neuls, Tianna Yaskow and Jamie Mayoh-Bauche and will focus on how to learn online. Click here for more details.

KEEPING ENGAGED

  • As always, we encourage students to follow our social media channels and the JSGS-SA Facebook page. We will be issuing a number of condensed COVID-19-themed policy briefs over the coming weeks, and we appreciate your thoughts and encourage discussion on the recommendations presented.
  • The JSGS-SA has organized weekly Zoom sessions for students who want to connect, talk about what’s going on in your respective worlds, and ask questions if needed. Students from both Saskatoon and Regina are welcome to join. These Zoom calls will be held every Wednesday, starting April 1 until at least April 15, from 5-7 p.m. Saskatchewan time.
  • Also, please remember our weekly town hall meetings, every Monday. 

Stay safe. Stay healthy.

Doug Moen and Murray Fulton


March 20, 2020

Dear Online MPA students,

You may have seen the update from the University of Saskatchewan yesterday regarding further restrictions on campus. The expectation of the university’s announcement is that by March 23, all non-core USask employees still working on campus will have made the transition to work remotely. JSGS will abide by this policy – as of Monday, March 23, all of our staff and faculty will be working off-site. That said, they continue to be available during the core operating hours and can be contacted through the usual channels.

You might have a few questions regarding classes and university-wide supports, in light of the changing landscape due to COVID-19. Although we don’t have all the answers yet, here is what we’ve learned so far:

ASSIGNMENT COMPLETION

  • Although we want to ensure that you can complete your program on schedule, we also understand the additional pressure you are under.
  • We have been in touch with all instructors and have requested that they give students extra flexibility in terms of assignment deadlines and class attendance. Please contact your instructors directly to discuss extensions.

COURSE SCHEDULES

  • All JSGS classes being offered this semester are going forward as scheduled. One of the key JSGS goals is to ensure that you finish your courses and your program.
  • The University of Saskatchewan announced today that Spring/Summer 2020 courses will proceed, but in an online (remote) delivery mode only. Seeing as how all online MPA classes are already offered by distance, this will not impact your program of study.
  • For updated course schedules, visit https://www.schoolofpublicpolicy.sk.ca/students/course-information/course-schedule.php.

PINNING CEREMONY

  • We will be postponing the 2020 JSGS Pinning Ceremony that was originally scheduled for March 31, 2020. At this time, we are hopeful that we will be able to reschedule the ceremony to the fall. We will be in touch with you over the summer months with further information, including information on how to receive your alumni pin if you are unable to attend the ceremony.

JSGS TOWN HALL MEETINGS

  • Consistency and routine can help to create a feeling of normalcy in uncertain times. The school has organized weekly town hall meetings for students every Monday, where you can connect with faculty, staff and students via Zoom. Please use these sessions to raise any concerns or provide feedback.
  • An email reminder will be sent out on Monday morning with the Zoom link.
  • We also encourage you to continue contacting Emmy Neuls directly for support if you don’t feel comfortable raising an issue in these sessions.

INSTITUTIONAL AND REGIONAL RESOURCES AND SUPPORTS

SOCIAL SUPPORTS

  • Although we need to continue practice safe social distancing, you will need social interaction and we encourage you to do so safely by phone or other online platforms.
  • Amanda Wilcox (JSGS Student Association President in Regina) has taken initiative to organize an open Zoom chat for all those who wish to connect. Manreet Kaur Nehal (JSGS Student Association President in Saskatoon) will also be joining. There won’t be an agenda, but it will give you an opportunity to connect with one another. For more information on this, please visit the JSGS-SA Facebook page or reach out directly to Amanda Wilcox or Manreet Kaur Nehal (via the JSGS Student Association email addresses).
  • Other suggestions for what you can do while practicing safe social distancing include:
    • Grabbing a cup of coffee and connecting with a friend online.
    • Reading an article or book, or watching movie, and having a group chat to discuss the findings and/or plot.
    • Going for a walk.
    • Practicing meditation or yo­ga. Many how-to sources are available online.

While faculty and staff will not be physically in the office, they are still working and we encourage you to connect with them by email, phone, zoom or WebEx. 

Remember, we are here to support you.

Doug Moen & Murray Fulton  


March 14, 2020

Dear students,

As you all know, things are moving very quickly around COVID-19, especially now that two cases have been reported in Saskatchewan.

Our priority remains the same—the health, safety and well-being of our students, staff, and faculty. We want to make sure that students continue to receive high quality instruction and support, and are able to complete their courses and programs with as little disruption as possible.

The University of Saskatchewan (USask) has announced the suspension of classes from Monday, March 16 through Wednesday, March 18, while the University of Regina (U of R) has announced the suspension of classes from Monday, March 16 through Thursday, March 19. Courses would then resume after the suspensions in an online/remote format.

Since the online MPA courses are already being delivered in an online/remote format, no changes are anticipated in these courses. However, please watch for messages from your instructor in order to stay on top of what is happening in your courses.

We are aware that you may be under immense pressure for many reasons, and the uncertainty surrounding COVID-19 may add to your stress. If you have concerns, please reach out to your instructor, Emmy Neuls, and/or Murray Fulton. We are here to support you.

For those of you who have questions, we are hosting an online Question and Answer session on Monday, March 16 at 2 p.m. An email will go out Monday morning with details. 

The University of Saskatchewan continues to monitor the coronavirus outbreak, and institutional updates can be found online at USask COVID-19.

For up-to-date and accurate information regarding the outbreak, symptoms and treatment, prevention and risks, and for a variety of resources, visit Government of Canada Updates

In the meantime, we strongly recommend that you continue to take precautions to help prevent illness and transmission:

  • Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Sneeze into your sleeve or elbow and throw away soiled tissues as soon as possible, followed by hand washing.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth.
  • Stay home if you are sick.
  • Make sure that your vaccinations are up-to-date.
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick.

Yours truly,

Doug Moen and Murray Fulton


March 12, 2020

Dear students,

You have no doubt been following the COVID-19 story as it unfolds around the world and have questions about what might happen at the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School. We wanted to let you know that JSGS faculty and staff are closely monitoring the COVID-19 outbreak and are committed to providing you with regular updates on what we are and will be doing in response. As of right now, the public health risk associated with COVID-19 is low for the general population in Canada and business remains as usual. However, the situation is changing rapidly, and we may be required to change what we are doing. 

If we are required to make changes, our top priority is the health and safety of our students, staff, and faculty. We also want to make sure that students continue to receive high quality instruction and support and are able to complete their courses and programs.

To these ends, the JSGS is actively working on a contingency plan. For the online MPA, this plan includes the possibility of delaying in-person residencies until the threat of COVID-19 has passed. Otherwise, you should expect that your courses will be provided as scheduled.

The JSGS will also consider cancelling events that bring together large groups of people; this decision will be made on a case-by-case basis based on the latest advice from the Saskatchewan Health Authority and the Public Health Agency of Canada.

We know you are likely to have questions. Thus, we will be hosting an online Question and Answer session next week (details will be provided shortly). If, for any reason, you wish to speak to Emmy Neuls in person, please contact her to arrange a one-on-one meeting.

The University of Saskatchewan is monitoring the coronavirus situation, and institutional updates can be found online at USask COVID-19.

For up-to-date and accurate information regarding the outbreak, symptoms and treatment, prevention and risks, and for a variety of resources, visit Government of Canada Updates.  

Thanks for giving the information in this letter your utmost attention. COVID-19 will have a major impact on the world and it is important that we all find a way to deal with its repercussions in a way that is thoughtful and considerate.

Yours truly,

Doug Moen and Murray Fulton

April 8, 2020

Dear JSGS students, 

We understand that there have been many personal consequences as a result of COVID-19 pandemic, and one of these may be financial hardship. We have established the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy (JSGS) Emergency Bursary Program, which is a modest fund available to assist JSGS students at both campuses who may need temporary help on an emergency basis due to circumstances caused by the COVID‑19 pandemic. This special program will be available only for the period deemed appropriate by JSGS. Funds for the JSGS Emergency Bursary Program are provided and managed jointly by JSGS at the University of Regina and University of Saskatchewan campuses.

The JSGS Emergency Bursary Program is intended to bridge a financial gap that would otherwise impede a student’s ability to complete their studies. Students can apply for emergency funding of up to $2,000 at one time, although approval is not guaranteed.

To be eligible to apply, the applicant must be actively registered and enrolled in a JSGS program or be on approved academic leave (this includes the spring/summer academic break for students in the MPA program at the USask campus). Students in all JSGS programs are eligible to apply for support. For GENI students, those with USask as their home institution are eligible to apply.

JSGS students experiencing financial hardship who wish to apply for an emergency bursary can complete the application form and email it (together with the required supporting documentation) to jsgs-bursary@usask.ca. Any questions about the application or process can also be sent to that email. The first round of applications will be reviewed on April 17, 2020, and must be submitted by April 16 at 3:00 p.m. Applications submitted after this date will be reviewed on a rolling basis.

There are also other emergency funding sources available that we encourage you to explore: 

In addition to the above funding sources, USask has extended the tuition and fee payment deadlines for the 2020 spring and summer terms. The tuition deadlines are now June 2 (2020 Spring term) and August 3 (2020 Summer term). For more information on how to pay, or to learn about the Graduate Student Tuition Instalment Plan, visit https://students.usask.ca/money/tuition-fees/pay.php.

Take care.

Doug Moen, Ken Rasmussen and Murray Fulton

 


March 17, 2020

Dear MHA Students:

I am writing to update you regarding the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on winter and spring MHA courses. This message includes information that we provided during yesterday's (Monday's) live information session (conducted via Zoom).

Before I provide the update, I first want to express my appreciation for the contributions that you are no doubt making, whether directly or indirectly, to care for those infected with COVID-19 and to stop the pandemic. You are truly lifesavers. Thank you.

On Friday (March 13), the University of Regina announced that all winter 2020 courses will move to an online/remote format. At that time, the University asked faculty to prepare to deliver spring 2020 courses online as well in the event that public health restrictions on in-person gatherings are still in place. Given that the MHA is mostly an online program, these changes will not impact you as much as they will students in our in-person programs. However, we recognize that you may be under additional work or personal pressures due to the pandemic, so would like to share that, at our request, the graduate school has provided guidance to course instructors on how they can assist students needing more time to complete course assignments. Included in that guidance was an extension of the grade-of-W withdrawl deadline for the winter semester to March 23. If you feel that you need more time to complete a course assignment, please contact your instructor directly.

As you know, our MHA Residency courses are conducted in-person. Due to the uncertainty of the length of restrictions on in-person gatherings, students' planning needs, and JSGS' desire to deliver a well-prepared course, we will be delivering the Spring 2020 Residency online/remotely. In the coming month, Professor Kyabaggu will be providing more information regarding the course format to students who are registered to take it. In the meantime, students who are currently registered but would prefer to take the course in-person may drop it by following the usual procedures. Please note that at this point we still plan to offer the fall Residency (JSGS 830AA) in person. If the University's pandemic restrictions are later extended to the fall semester, we will review the format at that time.

As we receive updates from the University of Regina, University of Saskatchewan, the Saskatchewan Health Authority, or the Government of Saskatchewan that could impact the MHA program, we will post them on this web page: https://www.schoolofpublicpolicy.sk.ca/students/covid-19-updates.php . Please consider bookmarking it.

Finally, please do not hesitate to contact me or your Academic Advisor, John Bird (John.Bird@uregina.ca) with questions. 

Best wishes for good health,

Cheryl Camillo
Cheryl.Camillo@uregina.ca


March 14, 2020

Dear students,

As you all know, things are moving very quickly around COVID-19, especially now that two cases have been reported in Saskatchewan.

Our priority remains the same—the health, safety and well-being of our students, staff, and faculty. We want to make sure that students continue to receive high quality instruction and support, and are able to complete their courses and programs with as little disruption as possible.

The University of Regina (U of R) has announced the suspension of classes from Monday, March 16 through Thursday, March 19, while the University of Saskatchewan (USask) has announced the suspension of classes from Monday, March 16 through Wednesday, March 18. Courses would then resume after the suspensions in an online/remote format.

Since the online MHA courses are already being delivered in an online/remote format, no changes are anticipated in these courses. However, please watch for messages from your instructor in order to stay on top of what is happening in your courses.

With regards to the upcoming JSGS 830: MHA Residency, please know that we are monitoring the situation and are actively exploring and considering different delivery formats should they be required.  More information will be communicated shortly about this.

We are aware that many of you are currently working within the health care system or may be under immense pressure due to the uncertainty surrounding COVID-19. We do not want to add to your stress. If you have concerns, please reach out to your instructor, John Bird, and/or Cheryl Camillo. We are here to support you.

For those of you who have questions, we are hosting an online Question and Answer session on Monday, March 16 at 2 p.m. An email will go out Monday morning with details. 

The University of Regina continues to monitor the coronavirus outbreak, and institutional updates can be found online at U of R COVID-19.

For up-to-date and accurate information regarding the outbreak, symptoms and treatment, prevention and risks, and for a variety of resources, visit Government of Canada Updates

In the meantime, we strongly recommend that you continue to take precautions to help prevent illness and transmission:

  • Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Sneeze into your sleeve or elbow and throw away soiled tissues as soon as possible, followed by hand washing.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth.
  • Stay home if you are sick.
  • Make sure that your vaccinations are up-to-date.
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick.

 Yours truly,

Doug Moen and Ken Rasmussen


March 12, 2020

Dear students,

You have no doubt been following the COVID-19 story as it unfolds around the world and have questions about what might happen at the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School. We wanted to let you know that JSGS faculty and staff are closely monitoring the COVID-19 outbreak and are committed to providing you with regular updates on what we are and will be doing in response. As of right now, the public health risk associated with COVID-19 is low for the general population in Canada and business remains as usual. However, the situation is changing rapidly, and we may be required to change what we are doing. 

If we are required to make changes, our top priority is the health and safety of our students, staff, and faculty. We also want to make sure that students continue to receive high quality instruction and support and are able to complete their courses and programs.

To these ends, the JSGS is actively working on a contingency plan. For the online MHA, this plan includes the possibility of altering delivery for in-person residencies. Otherwise, you should expect that your courses will be provided as scheduled.

The JSGS will also consider cancelling events that bring together large groups of people; this decision will be made on a case-by-case basis based on the latest advice from the Saskatchewan Health Authority and the Public Health Agency of Canada.  

We know you are likely to have questions. Thus, we will be hosting an online Question and Answer session next week (details will be provided shortly). If, for any reason, you wish to speak to John Bird in person, please contact him to arrange a one-on-one meeting.

The University of Regina is monitoring the coronavirus situation, and institutional updates can be found online at U of R COVID-19.

For up-to-date and accurate information regarding the outbreak, symptoms and treatment, prevention and risks, and for a variety of resources, visit Government of Canada Updates.  

Thanks for giving the information in this letter your utmost attention. COVID-19 will have a major impact on the world and it is important that we all find a way to deal with its repercussions in a way that is thoughtful and considerate.

Yours truly,

Doug Moen and Ken Rasmussen

April 8, 2020

Dear JSGS students, 

We understand that there have been many personal consequences as a result of COVID-19 pandemic, and one of these may be financial hardship. We have established the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy (JSGS) Emergency Bursary Program, which is a modest fund available to assist JSGS students at both campuses who may need temporary help on an emergency basis due to circumstances caused by the COVID‑19 pandemic. This special program will be available only for the period deemed appropriate by JSGS. Funds for the JSGS Emergency Bursary Program are provided and managed jointly by JSGS at the University of Regina and University of Saskatchewan campuses.

The JSGS Emergency Bursary Program is intended to bridge a financial gap that would otherwise impede a student’s ability to complete their studies. Students can apply for emergency funding of up to $2,000 at one time, although approval is not guaranteed.

To be eligible to apply, the applicant must be actively registered and enrolled in a JSGS program or be on approved academic leave (this includes the spring/summer academic break for students in the MPA program at the USask campus). Students in all JSGS programs are eligible to apply for support. For GENI students, those with USask as their home institution are eligible to apply.

JSGS students experiencing financial hardship who wish to apply for an emergency bursary can complete the application form and email it (together with the required supporting documentation) to jsgs-bursary@usask.ca. Any questions about the application or process can also be sent to that email. The first round of applications will be reviewed on April 17, 2020, and must be submitted by April 16 at 3:00 p.m. Applications submitted after this date will be reviewed on a rolling basis.

There are also other emergency funding sources available that we encourage you to explore: 

In addition to the above funding sources, USask has extended the tuition and fee payment deadlines for the 2020 spring and summer terms. The tuition deadlines are now June 2 (2020 Spring term) and August 3 (2020 Summer term). For more information on how to pay, or to learn about the Graduate Student Tuition Instalment Plan, visit https://students.usask.ca/money/tuition-fees/pay.php.

Take care.

Doug Moen, Ken Rasmussen and Murray Fulton

 


March 27, 2020

Dear students,

Thanks to all of you who continue to provide us with updates regarding your current situations and your progress in your online program. We just want to provide you with a few updates that might be relevant to your situation:

FINANCIAL SUPPORTS

  • The Government of Canada has suspended federal student loan repayments, effective March 30 and lasting until September 30, 2020. This loan repayment break will be automatic, and students won’t be required to apply for the payment pause.
  • All USask financial supports that were available before the COVID-19 outbreak remain open to students.
  • USask students experiencing an unexpected financial crisis should contact Student Central to access the Nasser Family Emergency Student Trust at askus@usask.ca or 1-306-966-1212 or 1-877-650-1212.
  • In regards to tuition, students should be aware of the general rules for late payment. At USask, if funds are not paid by the deadline, a hold will go on the student’s account. The hold remains until the account reaches zero. At the U of R, tuition and fees are due on the first day of classes. However, the university does allow a grace period before late payment charges are added to the account. Please refer to the current Academic Schedule for the end of penalty-free payment date. Late payment charges are applied at 1.5% of the outstanding balance per month.
  • At USask, graduate students may sign up for a Graduate Student Tuition Instalment plan to pay their tuition fees with monthly pre-authorized payments. The U of R does not offer payment plans for tuition.

GENI RESEARCH PROJECTS

  • Social distancing practices are essential in order to curtail the spread of the virus in the wide variety of spaces where we conduct research. In light of this, you may need to postpone your research or change your methodology (e.g. changing in-person interviews to phone or Zoom interviews, etc.). Please discuss different options with your supervisor, and update Emmy Neuls regarding any major changes to your research plan.

WITHDRAWAL DEADLINES

  • The withdrawal deadline for the USask 2020 Winter Term has been moved to the last day of classes (April 7).

ONLINE/REMOTE COURSE DELIVERY

  • We recognize the current challenges you are under, and it is our goal to support you through this time so that you can complete your program on schedule. If you need an extension, please talk to your instructor.

JSGS ONLINE EVENTS

  • Starting on April 1, the JSGS and its research centres will begin hosting a number of public webinars. Up first in the CSIP Research Forum series is Justin Longo’s talk on artificial intelligence in the Canadian public administration. Click here for more details. Please watch for notifications, as webinars will regularly be added to the JSGS Events calendar.
  • We are also currently organizing a series of brown bag forums and alumni-led presentations for JSGS students. The first event, which is being held on March 31 from 12:00-1:00 p.m., will be led by Martin Boucher, Emmy Neuls, Tianna Yaskow and Jamie Mayoh-Bauche and will focus on how to learn online. Click here for more details.

KEEPING ENGAGED

  • As always, we encourage students to follow our social media channels and the JSGS-SA Facebook page. We will be issuing a number of condensed COVID-19-themed policy briefs over the coming weeks, and we appreciate your thoughts and encourage discussion on the recommendations presented.
  • The JSGS-SA has organized weekly Zoom sessions for students who want to connect, talk about what’s going on in your respective worlds, and ask questions if needed. Students from both Saskatoon and Regina are welcome to join. These Zoom calls will be held every Wednesday, starting April 1 until at least April 15, from 5-7 p.m. Saskatchewan time.
  • Also, please remember our weekly town hall meetings, every Monday. 

Stay safe. Stay healthy.

Doug Moen and Murray Fulton


March 20, 2020

Dear GENI students,

You may have seen the update from the University of Saskatchewan yesterday regarding further restrictions on campus. The expectation of the university’s announcement is that by March 23, all non-core USask employees still working on campus will have made the transition to work remotely. JSGS will abide by this policy – as of Monday, March 23, all of our staff and faculty will be working off-site. That said, they continue to be available during the core operating hours and can be contacted through the usual channels.

You might have a few questions regarding classes and university-wide supports, in light of the changing landscape due to COVID-19. Although we don’t have all the answers yet, here is what we’ve learned so far:

ASSIGNMENT COMPLETION

  • Although we want to ensure that you can complete your program on schedule, we also understand the additional pressure you are under.
  • We have been in touch with all instructors and have requested that they give students extra flexibility in terms of assignment deadlines and class attendance. Please contact your instructors directly to discuss extensions.

COURSE SCHEDULES

  • All JSGS classes being offered this semester are going forward as scheduled. One of the key JSGS goals is to ensure that you finish your courses and your program.
  • The University of Saskatchewan announced today that Spring/Summer 2020 courses will proceed, but in an online (remote) delivery mode only. Seeing as how all GENI classes are already offered by distance, this will not impact your program of study.
  • For updated course schedules, visit https://www.schoolofpublicpolicy.sk.ca/students/course-information/course-schedule.php.

PINNING CEREMONY

  • We will be postponing the 2020 JSGS Pinning Ceremony that was originally scheduled for March 31, 2020. At this time, we are hopeful that we will be able to reschedule the ceremony to the fall. We will be in touch with you over the summer months with further information, including information on how to receive your alumni pin if you are unable to attend the ceremony.

JSGS TOWN HALL MEETINGS

  • Consistency and routine can help to create a feeling of normalcy in uncertain times. The school has organized weekly town hall meetings for students every Monday, where you can connect with faculty, staff and students via Zoom. Please use these sessions to raise any concerns or provide feedback.
  • An email reminder will be sent out on Monday morning with the Zoom link.
  • We also encourage you to continue contacting Emmy Neuls directly for support if you don’t feel comfortable raising an issue in these sessions.

 

INSTITUTIONAL AND REGIONAL RESOURCES AND SUPPORTS

SOCIAL SUPPORTS

  • Although we need to continue practice safe social distancing, you will need social interaction and we encourage you to do so safely by phone or other online platforms.
  • Amanda Wilcox (JSGS Student Association President in Regina) has taken initiative to organize an open Zoom chat for all those who wish to connect. Manreet Kaur Nehal (JSGS Student Association President in Saskatoon) will also be joining. There won’t be an agenda, but it will give you an opportunity to connect with one another. For more information on this, please visit the JSGS-SA Facebook page or reach out directly to Amanda Wilcox or Manreet Kaur Nehal (via the JSGS Student Association email addresses).
  • Other suggestions for what you can do while practicing safe social distancing include:
    • Grabbing a cup of coffee and connecting with a friend online.
    • Reading an article or book, or watching movie, and having a group chat to discuss the findings and/or plot.
    • Going for a walk.
    • Practicing meditation or yo­ga. Many how-to sources are available online.

While faculty and staff will not be physically in the office, they are still working and we encourage you to connect with them by email, phone, zoom or WebEx. 

Remember, we are here to support you.

Doug Moen & Murray Fulton  


March 14, 2020

As you all know, things are moving very quickly around COVID-19, especially now that two cases have been reported in Saskatchewan.

Our priority remains the same—the health, safety and well-being of our students, staff, and faculty. We want to make sure that students continue to receive high quality instruction and support, and are able to complete their courses and programs with as little disruption as possible.

The University of Saskatchewan (USask) has announced the suspension of classes from Monday, March 16 through Wednesday, March 18, while the University of Regina (U of R) has announced the suspension of classes from Monday, March 16 through Thursday, March 19. Courses would then resume after the suspensions in an online/remote format.

Since the online GENI courses are already being delivered in an online/remote format, no changes are anticipated in these courses. However, please watch for messages from your instructor in order to stay on top of what is happening in your courses.

We are aware that you may be under immense pressure for many reasons, and the uncertainty surrounding COVID-19 may add to your stress. If you have concerns, please reach out to your instructor, Emmy Neuls, Jonathan Crossen, and/or Murray Fulton. We are here to support you.

For those of you who have questions, we are hosting an online Question and Answer session on Monday, March 16 at 9 a.m. An email will go out shortly with details. 

The University of Saskatchewan and the UiT The Arctic University of Norway continue to monitor the coronavirus outbreak, and institutional updates can be found online at USask COVID-19 or UiT COVID-19.

For up-to-date and accurate information regarding the outbreak, symptoms and treatment, prevention and risks, and for a variety of resources, visit Government of Canada Updates.

In the meantime, we strongly recommend that you continue to take precautions to help prevent illness and transmission:

  • Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Sneeze into your sleeve or elbow and throw away soiled tissues as soon as possible, followed by hand washing.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth.
  • Stay home if you are sick.
  • Make sure that your vaccinations are up-to-date.
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick.

Yours truly,

Doug Moen and Murray Fulton 


March 12, 2020

Dear students,

You have no doubt been following the COVID-19 story as it unfolds around the world and have questions about what might happen at the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School. We wanted to let you know that JSGS faculty and staff are closely monitoring the COVID-19 outbreak and are committed to providing you with regular updates on what we are and will be doing in response. As of right now, the public health risk associated with COVID-19 is low for the general population in Canada and business remains as usual. However, the situation is changing rapidly, and we may be required to change what we are doing. 

If we are required to make changes, our top priority is the health and safety of our students, staff, and faculty. We also want to make sure that students continue to receive high quality instruction and support and are able to complete their courses and programs.

To these ends, the JSGS is actively working on a contingency plan. For the online GENI, this plan includes the possibility of delaying in-person field schools until the threat of COVID-19 has passed. Otherwise, you should expect that your GENI USask courses will continue as normal.

We know you are likely to have questions. Thus, we will be hosting an online Question and Answer session next week (details will be provided shortly). If, for any reason, you wish to speak to Emmy Neuls or Jonathan Crossen, please contact them to arrange a one-on-one meeting.

The University of Saskatchewan is monitoring the coronavirus situation, and institutional updates can be found online at USask COVID-19.

The GENI program is offered jointly with UiT the Arctic University of Norway, and all GENI students should have received UiT information earlier today.  The institutional updates can also be found on this at UiT COVID-19.

For up-to-date and accurate information regarding the outbreak, symptoms and treatment, prevention and risks, and for a variety of resources, visit Government of Canada Updates.  

Thanks for giving the information in this letter your utmost attention. COVID-19 will have a major impact on the world and it is important that we all find a way to deal with its repercussions in a way that is thoughtful and considerate.

Yours truly,

Doug Moen and Murray Fulton

 

April 8, 2020

Dear JSGS students, 

We understand that there have been many personal consequences as a result of COVID-19 pandemic, and one of these may be financial hardship. We have established the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School of Public Policy (JSGS) Emergency Bursary Program, which is a modest fund available to assist JSGS students at both campuses who may need temporary help on an emergency basis due to circumstances caused by the COVID‑19 pandemic. This special program will be available only for the period deemed appropriate by JSGS. Funds for the JSGS Emergency Bursary Program are provided and managed jointly by JSGS at the University of Regina and University of Saskatchewan campuses.

The JSGS Emergency Bursary Program is intended to bridge a financial gap that would otherwise impede a student’s ability to complete their studies. Students can apply for emergency funding of up to $2,000 at one time, although approval is not guaranteed.

To be eligible to apply, the applicant must be actively registered and enrolled in a JSGS program or be on approved academic leave (this includes the spring/summer academic break for students in the MPA program at the USask campus). Students in all JSGS programs are eligible to apply for support. For GENI students, those with USask as their home institution are eligible to apply.

JSGS students experiencing financial hardship who wish to apply for an emergency bursary can complete the application form and email it (together with the required supporting documentation) to jsgs-bursary@usask.ca. Any questions about the application or process can also be sent to that email. The first round of applications will be reviewed on April 17, 2020, and must be submitted by April 16 at 3:00 p.m. Applications submitted after this date will be reviewed on a rolling basis.

There are also other emergency funding sources available that we encourage you to explore: 

In addition to the above funding sources, USask has extended the tuition and fee payment deadlines for the 2020 spring and summer terms. The tuition deadlines are now June 2 (2020 Spring term) and August 3 (2020 Summer term). For more information on how to pay, or to learn about the Graduate Student Tuition Instalment Plan, visit https://students.usask.ca/money/tuition-fees/pay.php.

Take care.

Doug Moen, Ken Rasmussen and Murray Fulton

 


April 2, 2020

Dear students,

Now in our third week of the COVID-19 outbreak here in Saskatchewan, we are shifting from crisis response and management to medium-term planning. 

The campus-specific weekly town hall meetings have been a great way for us to connect with and hear from you on important matters. However, as issues are being addressed and new information has become available through our two universities and government bodies, it has become clear that we no longer need one town hall meeting per campus. As a result, starting April 6 and until further notice, the JSGS will be moving to a single combined student town hall meeting from 12-1pm (Saskatchewan time) (https://zoom.us/j/656051946). This session is open to all JSGS students.

PASS/FAIL VS. NUMERICAL GRADE

As many of you aware, there has been discussion at the two universities recently about moving to a pass/fail versus numerical grading system. Here is a brief overview of the two institutions’ decisions, and how they will affect you as a JSGS student:

  • University of Saskatchewan (USask) – With a few exceptions (Law is one and they require students to choose the Pass/Fail option before they take their exams), the University of Saskatchewan, including the JSGS, has decided to keep the numerical grading system
  • University of Regina (U of R) – The U of R is providing students with four approved options for final grades for the Winter 2020 semester. On a class-by-class basis, students can choose which option best suits them. The options, which are irreversible once chosen, are:
    • Traditional numeric grading
    • Course withdrawal – the U of R has extended the course withdrawal deadline to coincide with the final day of classes (Thursday, April 9). Students chosen this option would avoid a failing grade and therefore a negative impact on your GPA.
    • CRC (Credit-COVID-19) – for students who pass a course, but who experience stressors that have negatively impacted their academic performance. This option is considered a credit/pass, will not impact GPA, can be used in degree completion requirements, but may have some impact on eligibility for funding or financial awards. The deadline to select this option is May 31, 2020.
    • NCC (No Credit-COVID-19) – for students who receiving a failing numerical grade and request to replace it so as it preserve their academic standing. Students who do not pass a course due to failure to complete a final exam or other component of the course, will not be eligible for “NCC”. This option does not impact GPA and does not count towards degree completion. The deadline to select this option is May 31, 2020.
  • JSGS students are bound by the regulations of the campus at which they are enrolled.
    • For example, if a JSGS U of R student is taking a USask class, they can submit a request to the U of R graduate chair (i.e. Ken Rasmussen) to have their grade changed as outlined above.
    • JSGS USask students taking a U of R class must accept the traditional numeric grade given to them by their instructor.
  • JSGS is a graduate school—with both professional and research-based programs—and we strongly recommend that students from the U of R campus select the traditional numeric grading option as this is an important element of your degree. We encourage you to attend the next town hall meeting on Monday, should you have further questions about this.

EXTENSIONS

  • We understand that there has been some confusion around extensions. We will be reaching out to all instructors again to ensure they are aware of options available. Please contact your instructors directly to discuss what might be the best route for you, if you feel an extension is needed.

884 CAPSTONE PRESENTATIONS (USask campus)

  • We have heard that a few students are nervous about presenting their 884 capstone presentations via Zoom. It is natural to be worried about using a medium with which you are unfamiliar; therefore, we highly recommend that you sign up for a free Zoom account and run through your presentation with a friend or fellow student.

JSGS INTERNSHIPS

  • Placing interns is an ongoing process. Tianna is working with the mentors to ensure the process is moving forward. The COVID-19 situation has affected the 2020-21 mentors in different ways, which means some are slower to respond than others. Please be assured that we are working to move the placements forward so that interns know where they will be placed for the upcoming year.

UPCOMING ONLINE EVENTS

 OTHER

  • USask University Library - Although the University Library’s physical spaces are closed, staff are working remotely to assist students and faculty with their academic and research needs. Please visit the library website for updates, a listing of current library services, and to check out the new research guide: https://libguides.usask.ca/libraryupdates
  • The U of R has transitioned to online library services. Subject librarians are available to students over email and Zoom. There have also been changes to borrowing practices and timelines. For more information on online resources and practices, see https://uregina.libguides.com/covid-19/.

STAYING CONNECTED

Take care,

Doug Moen, Ken Rasmussen and Murray Fulton 


March 26, 2020

Dear students,

Thanks to all of you who joined us on Monday for the online town hall meeting. We are glad to see that many of you are adjusting to the new circumstances, and we continue to welcome your feedback as we navigate this changing situation. Regarding some of your questions, here is what we have learned so far:

STUDENT RESIDENCES/ACCOMMODATIONS

  • At the University of Saskatchewan, students remaining in residence and living in Voyageur Place (dorm-style units) are being moved into apartment-style units to abide by proper social distancing protocol. USask Culinary Services will be providing emergency hampers only for students who are quarantined due to recent travel or due to symptoms associated with COVID-19. Students who have a remaining meal balance on their accounts will have the option to extend the expiry date of their plan or get a refund so that they can purchase their own groceries. 
  • Students living in residence at the University of Regina will not be required to move out of their accommodations. For those who do wish to move off campus, the U of R is waiving all regular cancellation fees and providing pro-rated refunds. For the foreseeable future, U of R Food Services will remain open with a take-out option.

INTERNATIONAL STUDENTS

  • If an international student cannot/prefers not to return home right now, Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada (IRCC) has announced special measures to help temporary and permanent residents, including those here on study permits and affected by service disruptions due to the novel coronavirus. IRCC has published a website providing detailed information including updated processes on how you can apply to extend your stay in Canada if needed.
  • Currently, international students are not eligible for financial assistance from the Canadian government, such as government student loans or Employment Insurance. That said, international students may be eligible for bank loans but must have a co-signer who is either a Canadian or a permanent resident.
  • International students remaining in Canada should consult their embassy for advice and guidance on what supports their governments can provide.

FINANCIAL SUPPORTS

  • The Government of Canada has suspended federal student loan repayments, effective March 30 and lasting until September 30, 2020. This loan repayment break will be automatic, and students won’t be required to apply for the payment pause.
  • All USask and U of R financial supports that were available before the COVID-19 outbreak remain open to students.
  • USask students experiencing an unexpected financial crisis should contact Student Central to access the Nasser Family Emergency Student Trust at askus@usask.ca or 1-306-966-1212 or 1-877-650-1212.
  • In regards to tuition, students should be aware of the general rules for late payment. At USask, if funds are not paid by the deadline, a hold will go on the student’s account. The hold remains until the account reaches zero. At the U of R, tuition and fees are due on the first day of classes. However, the university does allow a grace period before late payment charges are added to the account. Please refer to the current Academic Schedule for the end of penalty-free payment date. Late payment charges are applied at 1.5% of the outstanding balance per month.
  • At USask, graduate students may sign up for a Graduate Student Tuition Instalment plan to pay their tuition fees with monthly pre-authorized payments. The U of R does not offer payment plans for tuition.

HEALTH AND WELLBEING

CONVOCATION

  • In line with federal and provincial requirements regarding COVID-19 prevention, and supporting the University of Saskatchewan’s and the University of Regina’s decisions to close both campuses to public visitors until further notice, Spring 2020 Convocation ceremonies have been postponed at USask and cancelled at the U of R. However, degrees will still be conferred in June to graduating students, but through alternative means. More information about what this will look like will be made available as soon as possible.

MPP/PHD RESEARCH

  • Social distancing practices are essential in order to curtail the spread of the virus in the wide variety of spaces where we conduct research. In light of this, you may need to postpone your research or change your methodology (e.g. changing in-person interviews to phone or Zoom interviews, etc.). Please discuss different options with your supervisor.
  • Research sponsors, including the tri-agencies, are well aware that the COVID-19 pandemic can affect funded research projects in many ways. In addition to existing mechanisms for addressing exceptional circumstances, the tri-agencies are actively assessing the issues and will be sharing further information. Please visit their respective websites for regular updates:
  • For research-based students at the U of R, the Faculty of Graduate Studies and Research has released modified thesis guidelines to accommodate students during this period. For a student who submits a ready-to-defend thesis before April 15, 2020 and will defend no later than May 31, 2020, the tuition fee for spring/summer semester will be waived. If the ready-to-defend thesis is not submitted by April 15 and defended by May 31, students will be required to register for Spring/Summer 2020.

WITHDRAWAL DEADLINES

  • The withdrawal deadline for the USask 2020 Winter Term has been moved to the last day of classes (April 7).
  • The withdrawal deadline for the U of R 2020 Winter Term has passed. Please note that the last day of classes for the 2020 Winter term is April 9.

ONLINE/REMOTE COURSE DELIVERY AND ACCESS

  • Thank you to all students who have provided feedback on the new Zoom-delivery format. Faculty are adjusting to this new teaching approach, and we greatly appreciate your patience as we fine tune the technology on our end.
  • We recognize the current challenges you are under, and it is our goal to support you through this time so that you can complete your program on schedule. If you need an extension, please talk to your instructor.
  • Students who do not have access to computers in their off-campus locations are encouraged to connect with their instructors for alternative options.
  • For those international students who have returned home and are unable to return to Canada for the foreseeable future, please know that you will be able to continue your program onlinefrom your home country. This will be done in a variety of ways (e.g., recording of classes in the case of Zoom/WebEx calls), depending on the course and the method of instruction. According to current IRCC regulations, studying online for part of your program on an exceptional basis due to COVID-19 will not affect post-graduation work permit program eligibility. However, there are things to keep in mind. Click here for more information about distance learning and PGWPP eligibility

JSGS ONLINE EVENTS

  • Starting on April 1, the JSGS and its research centres will begin hosting a number of public webinars. Up first in the CSIP Research Forum series is Justin Longo’s talk on artificial intelligence in the Canadian public administration. Click here for more details. Please watch for notifications, as webinars will regularly be added to the JSGS Events calendar.
  • For MPP and PhD students, please be advised that watching an online webinar or a recorded presentation will now count towards your JSGS 990 seminar requirements.
  • We are also currently organizing a series of brown bag forums and alumni-led presentations for JSGS students. The first event, which is being held on March 31 from 12:00-1:00 p.m., will be led by Martin Boucher, Emmy Neuls, Tianna Yaskow and Jamie Mayoh-Bauche and will focus on how to learn online. Click here for more details.

KEEPING ENGAGED

  • As always, we encourage students to follow our social media channels and the JSGS-SA Facebook page. We will be issuing a number of condensed COVID-19-themed policy briefs over the coming weeks, and we appreciate your thoughts and encourage discussion on the recommendations presented.
  • The JSGS-SA has organized weekly Zoom sessions for students who want to connect, talk about what’s going on in your respective worlds, and ask questions if needed. Students from both Saskatoon and Regina are welcome to join. These Zoom calls will be held every Wednesday, starting April 1 until at least April 15, from 5-7 p.m. Saskatchewan time.
  • Also, please remember our weekly town hall meetings, every Monday.

Stay safe. Stay healthy.

Doug Moen, Ken Rasmussen and Murray Fulton

 


March 20, 2020

Dear students,

This past Monday, the school held town hall zoom chats with students where many good questions were raised regarding classes, internships, and university-wide supports, in light of the changing landscape due to COVID-19. Although we don’t have all the answers yet, here is what we’ve learned so far:

ASSIGNMENT COMPLETION

  • Although we want to ensure that you can complete your program on schedule, we also understand the additional pressure you are under.
  • We have been in touch with all instructors and have requested that they give students extra flexibility in terms of assignment deadlines and class attendance. Please contact your instructors directly to discuss extensions.

WINTER 2020 COURSE SCHEDULE

  • All JSGS classes being offered this semester are going forward as scheduled. One of the key JSGS goals is to ensure that you finish your courses and your program.
  • Instructors are currently exploring different modes of delivering course content in an online/remote format. This may include discussion boards, written material, video recordings, and real-time Zoom or WebEx sessions. Instructors will be in contact with those registered in their classes, with more information and details regarding the delivery mode.
  • As classes move to an online/remote format, please be patient with the technology and the pace of the classes. We kindly ask that you practice understanding at all times in your classes.

SPRING/SUMMER 2020 COURSE SCHEDULES

  • The University of Saskatchewan announced today that Spring/Summer 2020 courses will proceed, but in an online (remote) delivery mode only. Although the University of Regina has yet to make a similar announcement, the JSGS will be moving its classes to an online/remote format for the upcoming semester.
  • With the exception of cancelling JSGS 853 Negotiations and Conflict Resolution, all other classes are being move to an online/remote format. For updated course schedules, visit https://www.schoolofpublicpolicy.sk.ca/students/course-information/course-schedule.php.

PINNING CEREMONY

  • We will be postponing the 2020 JSGS Pinning Ceremony that was originally scheduled for March 31, 2020. At this time, we are hopeful that we will be able to reschedule the ceremony to the fall. We will be in touch with you over the summer months with further information, including information on how to receive your alumni pin if you are unable to attend the ceremony.

DIEFENBAKER BUILDING CLOSURE

  • You may have seen the update from the University of Saskatchewan yesterday regarding further restrictions on campus. The expectation of the university’s announcement is that by March 23, all non-core USask employees still working on campus will have made the transition to work remotely.
  • JSGS will abide by this policy – as of Monday, March 23, all of our staff and faculty will be working off-site. They continue to be available during the core operating hours and can be contacted through the usual channels.
  • Since staff and faculty will not be on-site, the Diefenbaker Building will be closed to everyone – faculty, staff, students and the public.
  • The University’s core operations continue and are open to students who need to be on campus to access services to complete their academic programs. Currently, the Murray Library is open 8:00 am – 5:00 pm during weekdays. The campus is immediately closed to public visitors. Only faculty, staff, contractors, and deliveriescritical to core operations will be allowed on campus until further notice. In addition, please note that access to many buildings and facilities on campus will be limited or closed due to the preventative measures taken in recent days to protect the health and safety of the University community. A list of university buildings that are closed is available here.

JSGS TOWN HALL MEETINGS

  • Consistency and routine can help to create a feeling of normalcy in uncertain times. The school has organized weekly town hall meetings for students every Monday, where you can connect with faculty, staff and students via Zoom. The USask and U of R sessions will be held consecutively so that you may join both, if you so wish. Please use these sessions to raise any concerns or provide feedback.
  • An email reminder will be sent out on Monday morning with the two Zoom links.
  • We also encourage you to contact Amy Hassett or John Bird directly for support if you don’t feel comfortable raising an issue in these sessions.

INSTITUTIONAL AND REGIONAL RESOURCES AND SUPPORTS

  • Remember, your mental health is just as important as your physical health. Please seek out other people and additional supports if you are feeling particularly vulnerable during these times.
  • USask Student Wellness Centre | Students can contact the Student Wellness Centre via email wellness@usask.ca or by phone at 306-966-5768. Campus Security is also available at 306-966-5555 for urgent situations.
  • U of R Counselling Services | Students can contact Counselling Services Monday to Friday from 8:30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m., at 306-585-4491. After office hours contact: Mobile Crisis - 306-757-0127. Campus Security is also available 24 /7 and can reached at 306-585-4999.
  • Other supports include

SOCIAL SUPPORTS

  • Although we need to continue practice safe social distancing, you will need social interaction and we encourage you to do so safely by phone or other online platforms.
  • Amanda Wilcox (JSGS Student Association President in Regina) has taken initiative to organize an open Zoom chat for all those who wish to connect. Manreet Kaur Nehal (JSGS Student Association President in Saskatoon) will also be joining. There won’t be an agenda, but it will give you an opportunity to connect with one another. For more information on this, please visit the JSGS-SA Facebook page or reach out directly to Amanda Wilcox or Manreet Kaur Nehal (via the JSGS Student Association email addresses).
  • Other suggestions for what you can do while practicing safe social distancing include:
    • Grabbing a cup of coffee and connecting with a friend online.
    • Reading an article or book, or watching movie, and having a group chat to discuss the findings and/or plot.
    • Going for a walk.
    • Practicing meditation or yo­ga. Many how-to sources are available online.

We also want to let you all know that staff and faculty have been urged by both the University of Regina and the University of Saskatchewan to work from home for the foreseeable future. While they will not be physically in the office, they are still working and we encourage you to connect with them by email, phone, zoom or WebEx. 

Remember, we are here to support you.

Doug Moen, Ken Rasmussen & Murray Fulton  


March 17, 2020

Dear MCERT HSM Students:

I am writing to update you regarding the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on winter and spring MHA courses. This message includes information that we provided during yesterday's (Monday's) live information session (conducted via Zoom).

Before I provide the update, I first want to express my appreciation for the contributions that you are no doubt making, whether directly or indirectly, to care for those infected with COVID-19 and to stop the pandemic. You are truly lifesavers. Thank you.

On Friday (March 13), the University of Regina announced that all winter 2020 courses will move to an online/remote format. At that time, the University asked faculty to prepare to deliver spring 2020 courses online as well in the event that public health restrictions on in-person gatherings are still in place. Given that the Master Certificate in Health Systems Management is an online program, these changes will not impact you as much as they will students in our in-person programs. However, we recognize that you may be under additional work or personal pressures due to the pandemic, so would like to share that, at our request, the graduate school has provided guidance to course instructors on how they can assist students needing more time to complete course assignments. Included in that guidance was an extension of the grade-of-W withdrawal deadline for the winter semester to March 23. If you feel that you need more time to complete a course assignment, please contact your instructor directly.

As we receive updates from the University of Regina, University of Saskatchewan, the Saskatchewan Health Authority, or the Government of Saskatchewan that could impact the MCERT program, we will post them on this web page: https://www.schoolofpublicpolicy.sk.ca/students/covid-19-updates.php . Please consider bookmarking it.

Finally, please do not hesitate to contact me or your Academic Advisor John Bird (John.Bird@uregina.ca) with questions.

Best wishes for good health,

Cheryl Camillo
Cheryl.Camillo@uregina.ca


March 12, 2020

Dear students,

You have no doubt been following the COVID-19 story as it unfolds around the world and have questions about what might happen at the Johnson Shoyama Graduate School. We wanted to let you know that JSGS faculty and staff are closely monitoring the COVID-19 outbreak and are committed to providing you with regular updates on what we are and will be doing in response. As of right now, the public health risk associated with COVID-19 is low for the general population in Canada and business remains as usual. However, the situation is changing rapidly, and we may be required to change what we are doing. 

If we are required to make changes (e.g., many universities in the United States are moving their courses online), our top priority is the health and safety of our students, staff, and faculty. We also want to make sure that students continue to receive high quality instruction and support and are able to complete their courses and programs.

To these ends, the JSGS is actively working on a contingency plan. This plan includes the possibility of moving in-person courses to an online-delivery format until the COVID-19 threat has passed. If any changes are made to the delivery format, you will be notified as soon as possible. Please note that we may be required to make some of the changes very quickly, so be prepared if this were to happen.

The JSGS will also consider cancelling events that bring together large groups of people; this decision will be made on a case-by-case basis based on the latest advice from the Saskatchewan Health Authority and the Public Health Agency of Canada.

Additionally, for those of you who may be wondering about the hygiene of our physical space, the custodians are disinfecting common touch points, such as entrances, door knobs, all areas within washrooms, and handrails and communal gathering spaces. Nevertheless, you are strongly encouraged to practice good handwashing hygiene and sneezing etiquette. As well, please make yourself aware of the COVID-19 symptoms and take the appropriate steps to secure your own safety.

We know you are likely to have questions. Thus, we will be hosting a Question and Answer session on both campuses next week (details will be provided shortly). An option will be made available for those who wish to connect via Zoom. If, for any reason, you wish to speak to someone in person, please contact Amy Hassett or John Bird to arrange a one-on-one meeting.

The University of Saskatchewan and the University of Regina are monitoring the coronavirus situation, and institutional updates can be found online at USask COVID-19 or U of R COVID-19.

For up-to-date and accurate information regarding the outbreak, symptoms and treatment, prevention and risks, and for a variety of resources, visit Government of Canada Updates.  

Thanks for giving the information in this letter your utmost attention. COVID-19 will have a major impact on the world and it is important that we all find a way to deal with its repercussions in a way that is thoughtful and considerate.

Yours truly,

Doug Moen, Murray Fulton and Ken Rasmussen