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Student FAQ: COVID-19 Impact on Timmins Campus

Last updated: November 9, 2020 10:50AM

Northern College COVID-19 Updates

International Student FAQ


Be sure to follow our social media @algomau, @AUSU82, and our Youtube channel for updates on ways to virtually spend time together and support one another.


Northern College was happy to announce that they are now in Stage 3 of the Province’s framework for returning to in-person operations. The College has begun to let employees and students back to campus where required but access remains restricted except for the exceptions outlined below.

The following section provides further details on specific services and guidelines that will be in place as of September 9, 2020. Updates will be provided as additional services transition to face-to-face.

Should you require support from our Sault Ste. Marie based IT Service Desk, please call 705-949-2301 ext. 4450 or 1-888-902-7866 ext. 4450.  Students can submit a ticket via the student portal here.

The IT Service Desk will be open the following hours:

  • Monday to Thursday 8:00 am to 7:30 pm
  • Fridays 8:00 am to 4:00 pm

Saturday and Sunday 1:00 pm to 4:00 pm

  • The library will be open with reduced hours during this time of physical distancing. Once the library has finalized their hours, they will be posted to the library’s main page:  https://libguides.northernc.on.ca/home .
  • Students can still borrow books, by request either in-person or by email or our virtual reference desk.  Library staff will pull books from the shelves and make pickup arrangements with students. Reserves are still available for use in the library, keeping in mind that once a book is touched by a student it must be quarantined for 72 hours before it can go to the next student.  We have arranged to offer controlled digital loans of reserve chapters on demand.
  • There will be no access to the computer labs in the libraries.  Students are required to bring their laptops. Printing will be permitted.
  • Short-term laptop loans are not permitted this semester. Laptop loans for students in emergency situations will be considered on a individual basis.  Staff and PT faculty should direct their request for a laptop loan to IT.
  • Each library will have a maximum occupancy and students will remain in the common library area. Study rooms will remain closed.

Students can order their books with curb-side pickup. Students can enter the Northern College bookstore to purchase their book(s). The number of students allowed in the bookstore is limited. Phone ahead to inquire.

All meetings with staff or faculty should remain virtual until further notice. If you require an in-person meeting with a staff or faculty member, a designated meeting space may be provided to allow for social distancing. Email the staff/faculty member you wish to meet and they will make final arrangements. If for some reason, designated meeting space is not available, a virtual meeting will be scheduled.

All common spaces for students remain closed.


Northern College/Timmins Campus General Protocols:

  • Always maintain social distancing when possible.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Campuses and worksites are being opened on a restricted basis only.
  • Working and learning from home, in most cases, remains the preferred method of program and service delivery.
  • On-campus access is limited to specific purposes only, and this involves you remaining in the area to which you have been assigned and requires signing in and out of the College.
  • Everyone must wear a mask when entering buildings on campus and your mask must remain on until you have arrived at your designated space/office/desk/meeting place.
  • If you leave the common/public space to which you have required access on the campus or work site, you must place your mask on again until you have either left the building or returned to your designated space. A mask must always be worn.

COVID-19 Protocol for Students:

  • Access to designated campus sites are being opened on a restricted basis only and is to be requested through staff and faculty.
  • Students who are required to access campus will have the opportunity to enter Northern College through the East door, sign in and always wear a mask in all public spaces.
  • All students who must come on campus must wear a mask when entering any building or site and it must remain on until they get to their designated workspace
  • When physical distancing of six feet is not possible, masks must be worn at all times
  • All other hygiene practices to keep the College a safe environment must be followed:
  • Frequent, thorough hand washing and not touching one’s face
  • Frequent wiping of terminals and devices
  • Increased cleaning of the entire work environment
  • The campus is a “handshake free zone”
  • Debit and credit cards as preferred methods of payment
  • We may limit the number of people working in the College
  • Maintain the 14 day quarantine period if exposed to the COVID-19 virus
  • Negative results of your most recent COVID-19 test may be requested
  •  It is still recommended that anyone that can work from home maintain this schedule until further notice.
  • Masks are mandatory in all indoor public spaces.  You must wear a mask or face covering anytime you are moving through the facilities or using washrooms, printers, and elevators.  Wear your mask properly at all times, covering both your nose and mouth, including when speaking with others.
  • Students will be provided with a free mask (distribution details to be shared in a separate communication), but are encouraged to purchase their own as well.

Your cooperation in following guidelines is appreciated and important as we protect the health and safety of everyone on campus. Thunderbirds protecting Thunderbirds: Thunderbirds protecting Community.

Please note that it is now required under the Non-Academic Student Code of Conduct that all students follow Algoma University Health and Safety rules. If you have questions or are concerned you may have been exposed to COVID-19, please contact healthservices@algomau.ca.



Following several weeks of consultation with and feedback from faculty, staff, students and administration, as well as a review of directives from public health, government and other authorities in our communities, Algoma University has announced that classes for the 21W term will not be held face-to-face on the Timmins campus.

Please view official Communication Memo (September 28).

Speak to an Academic Success Advisor! Student Success has set up Daily DROP-IN advising from 1-1:30. Just click the Drop-in advising link and connect with an advisor! You can also register through your Student Portal.
At Algoma University, we’re committed to helping you continue learning with an array of online courses that span degrees, disciplines and fields. Now is the time to stay home and keep learning. With small class sizes, Algoma is bridging the gap between a virtual education and a personalized education. For more information, please view the Online/Remote Learning page.

In order to provide additional services for students on all our campuses, Student
Success Central will offer a daily “drop-in” via Google Hangouts. If you are in need of academic, wellness or immigration support please join us by clicking here Monday – Friday, 1:00 – 1:30 PM. Those students who have questions or need immediate support are encouraged to email advising@algomau.ca and a member of the Student Success Team will respond.

Academic Advising will be done online via Google Hangouts or over the phone. Where an advisor feels it is needed, in-person meetings with Academic Advisors will be by appointment only. In-person drop-ins will be suspended until further notice. To speak to an Academic Advisor, please email advising@algomau.ca  or call 705-949-2301 EXT 4238.

Immigration Advising will be done online via Google Hangouts or over the phone. Where an advisor feels it is needed, in-person meetings will be by appointment only.  To speak to an Immigration Advisor, please email at immigration@algomau.ca or call 705-949-2301 EXT 4238.

Please see our Memo from March 15th regarding Health Services on campus. If you have questions regarding Health Services, please email healthservices@algomau.ca. Counselling services are still available via Zoom video. Please email healthservices@algomau.ca to request an appointment.

To find out more about health services in the Timmins area, please visit our Health Services page.

For further enquiry about your account balance, please refer to your student portal (students.algomau.ca) or email accounts@algomau.ca.

For questions regarding financial aid, please email fao@algomau.ca.

For any services offered by the Office of the Registrar, please visit the website. While many student requests can be completed using the online links on the website, general information requests can still be sent to regoffice@algomau.ca. We ask for your patience during these challenging times.  

  • The Learning Centre is open by appointment only. We are encouraging meetings by phone or Google Hangouts.
  • Face to face tutoring is suspended until further notice but, if both parties are agreeable, tutoring can happen online through Google Hangouts.
  • All previously booked tests that were to happen within class time this week have been cancelled.  

Please email learning@algomau.ca or call EXT 4221 (Barb) or EXT 4225 (Raquel) for extra information.

Algoma University has determined that the University will proceed with the 2020 Spring/Summer term, with some adjustments necessary in order to respond to the COVID-19 situation. We have created a plan that we hope will minimize disruptions to students’ progress through their degrees, and help everyone be ready to continue in the fall term, too.

For more information, please view the official Communication Memo from March 20th.

The Career Link Seminar Series is now offered online. If you would like to join or set up an online session please email Darren.Vaughan@Algomau.ca.
Please keep an eye on Facebook and Instagram for updates.

We strongly recommend that all eligible students continue to look for summer/co-op employment. Employment opportunities are posted on your Student Portal under Job Opportunities. You may also want to visit our Online Career Fair here. Further, continue to check websites such as Employment Solutions, Indeed, Wow Jobs and SooToday. It is recommended you go through this link to see if you qualify for the Emergency Response Benefit. I recommend International Students take a look as well. This is a difficult time for seeking summer employment.

If you need assistance, please contact: Cindi Elgie, Co-op, Career & Experiential Learning at cindi.elgie@algomau.ca


You safety comes first. All members of the Algoma University community have the right to work and study in an environment that is free from any form of sexual violence.

Please visit our Sexual Violence Resources and Supports webpage for up to date information and contacts. We are here to listen and help you explore your options.

For updates on Library services and our FAQ please see our COVID-19 Updates & FAQ webpage: https://library.algomau.ca/covid-19/


Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that originate in animals but are known to cause respiratory illness in humans, particularly during the fall and winter months. Other novel coronaviruses have included Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS-CoV).

In January, 2020, a novel coronavirus (SARS-CoV-2) was identified as the cause of an outbreak of pneumonia originating in Wuhan, China. The latest statistics for Ontario are available at ontario.ca/coronavirus.

  • Fever (a temperature of 37.8 degrees or higher);
  • New or worsening cough;
  • Barking cough, making whistling noise when breathing (croup);
  • Shortness of breath (unable to breathe deeply or feeling unable to catch one’s breath);
  • Sore throat (not related to seasonal allergies or other known conditions);
  • Trouble/Difficulty swallowing;
  • Runny nose, or nasal congestion (not related to seasonal allergies or other known causes or conditions);
  • Unusual headache;
  • Changes in taste or smell (e.g. lost sense of taste);
  • Nausea or vomiting (not related to other known causes or conditions);
  • Diarrhea or stomach pain (not related to other known causes or conditions);
  • Unexplained fatigue (lack of energy);
  • Sore muscles (long lasting or unusual);
  • Pink eye (irritated, itchy or painful eye that may have crusting or discharge; conjunctivitis);
  • Falling down often
  • Sluggishness or lack of appetite (note these note these symptoms may be more relevant to infants and young children)
  • Unexplained rashes

Complications from the 2019 novel coronavirus can include serious conditions, like pneumonia or kidney failure, and in some cases, death.

Visit the Government of Canada’s website for all of the latest updates and the self assessment test.

You can find additional information at:

You can also follow Canada’s Chief Public Health Officer, Dr. Theresa Tam, on Twitter at: @CPHO_Canada

Together, let’s limit the spread of COVID-19 and prevent future outbreaks. COVID Alert helps us break the cycle of infection. The app can let people know of possible exposures before any symptoms appear. That way, we can take care of ourselves and protect our communities.

Download now

As part of its fall preparedness plan, Keeping Ontarians Safe: Preparing for Future Waves of COVID-19, the Ontario government is partnering with pharmacies to expand access to COVID-19 testing to track, trace and isolate cases.

Effective immediately, Ontarians should only seek testing at assessment centres if you are:

  • Showing COVID-19 symptoms;
  • Have been exposed to a confirmed case of the virus, as informed by your public health unit or exposure notification through the COVID Alert app;
  • A resident or work in a setting that has a COVID-19 outbreak, as identified and informed by your local public health unit; and
  • Eligible for testing as part of a targeted testing initiative directed by the Ministry of Health or the Ministry of Long-Term Care.
  • Wear a mask
  • Practice social distancing
  • Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water frequently and thoroughly, including between your fingers and under your nails;
  • Use alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available; 
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth; 
  • Cough or sneeze using a tissue or into your elbow or sleevecover your nose and mouth when you sneeze;
  • Avoid close contact with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness; 
  • Stay home if you are sick and avoid contact with others; 
  • If you are sick, contact a health care provider about your symptoms.

Visit the Government of Canada’s website for all of the latest updates and the self assessment test.

The COVID-19 virus can only spread through direct touch or through infected droplets from coughing or sneezing. This means we can build community immunity with social distancing and personal prevention.

Download package 2 – Build community immunity with social distancing (PDF)

No, the flu vaccine does not protect against coronaviruses.

The flu is mainly caused by two types of viruses: influenza A and influenza B.

No. The 2019 novel coronavirus like any other illness can spread to anyone. If you have recently visited a high-risk area, you should contact a health care provider or visit the nearest emergency room. Currently, the risk of contracting 2019 novel coronavirus in Ontario is low.

No. Wearing of masks is a personal choice. Some people choose to wear masks as a form of prevention. However, consumer masks, such as those sold in pharmacies have limited value and do not guarantee against contracting the 2019 novel coronavirus.

To reduce exposure to and transmission of a range of illnesses, including coronaviruses, you should follow usual health precautions such as:

  • Wash your hands often;
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick; and
  • Practise proper cough and sneeze etiquette (sneeze or cough into your elbow).

The Ontario Government implemented a provincial wide mask policy, that resulted in minor changes to our existing Algoma University Mask Policy. Please review the updated mask policy here.

Please see the following public health resource on self-isolation and self-monitoring.

Additional FAQ updates on academic accommodations, academic and non-academic support services, finances, travel and other areas of student concern will be added on an ongoing basis.