MSU operational updates for fall 2020

August 26, 2020 at 09:00 am

As September draws near, the McMaster Students Union continues to plan for a combination of online and in-person service delivery for the fall term. As a general reminder, McMaster University, as well as the City of Hamilton require masks to be worn indoors at all times. Please do not visit the physical campus at this time, unless absolutely necessary to do so. Undergraduate classes are taking place online.

All MSU peer support services, including the Student Health Education Centre (SHEC), the Pride Community Centre (PCC)Maccess, and the Women and Gender Equity Network (WGEN) have shifted to an online peer support and service delivery model. Follow their respective social media accounts for ongoing programming and peer support options.

In addition, most MSU services, will operate either online or in-person, come September. However, neither the Emergency First Response Team (EFRT) nor the Student Walk Home Attendant Team (SWHAT) will be available in the fall term. Due to the health risks inherent to the pandemic, as well as the lack of students on the physical campus, these two services are unable to function in September. Hamilton Paramedic Services is aware that EFRT is non-operational during the fall term. In case of an emergency, please call 911.

The MSU recently lowered several student ancillary fees, in recognition of the decreased service delivery in first semester.

MSU Campus Events continues to host social events, musical performances and more, via their social media accounts. With in-person events limited by public health regulations, the Campus Events team will bring students together in virtual spaces. Moreover, 93.3 CFMU broadcasts online and at 93.3 on the FM dial. Tune-in for news, music, and cultural programing, catering to the McMaster community.

The MSU Main Office in MUSC 201 will open to the public beginning Tuesday, September 8 at 9:30am. The Main Office will be open regularly from 9:30am – 11:30am Tuesdays, Wednesdays, and Thursdays throughout first semester. Accounting and administrative support staff will be available to students during these times. In addition, the Board of Directors and staff members can be contacted directly via email at any time.

All MSU businesses will be open for in-person operations beginning September 8, in order to serve the essential campus community. TwelvEighty will operate from 11am until 5pm, Monday through Thursdays. The Grind Café will open from 8am to 2pm, Monday through Thursdays. Union Market will open Monday through Thursday from 10am – 5pm and on Fridays from 10am – 3pm. These operations will cover morning and lunch service, including take-out dinning, coffee, snacks, cold beverages, and grab-and-go options. Please note, to ensure a safer food service environment, self-serve coffee and bagels will not be available in Union Market. Instead, please visit The Grind Café for all coffee options, as well as bagels and baked goods.  Underground Media + Design will be open by appointment only. Students can email to arrange print, design, copy, and binding work as needed.

At all MSU locations on campus, enhanced safety and cleaning protocols will be deployed. Partitions have been installed at all points of front-line customer service and physical distancing signage is visible on the floors, to help patrons comply with public health guidelines. Again, please only access campus spaces if necessary to do so.

The MSU has negotiated a temporary pause, exclusively for first semester, of the HSR bus pass. Recognizing the nature of remote classes, students will save more than $100 on the annual cost of the pass, which will begin operations on January 1, 2021. The bus pass voucher code will be available to students via Mosaic in mid-December 2020. 

The health and dental insurance plans are fully operational. Students may use their health and dental coverage anywhere in Canada. In addition, at no cost, McMaster students, along with their family and housemates, can access the MSU’s Student Assistance Plan (SAP). The SAP, available 24/7 through multi-lingual calls, chats, or texts, provides on-demand counselling with mental health experts, as well as professional consultation in the areas of nutrition, academic success, life skills, legal affairs, and more. Visit the Student Assistance Plan website for more details.

For more information, please contact:

Graeme Noble
Vice-President (Administration)

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