Yorkville University recently launched a brand-new initiative at each of its campuses across Canada to help maintain our connection with students during these times of physical distancing.
Student Services in British Columbia, Ontario, and New Brunswick have each established a series of regular drop-in Zoom Rooms, where students can access virtual face-to-face time with their student/program advisors with the simple click of a link.
“In this ever-changing world we’re living in right now, I think this gives our students one constant: they now know that they can click on a link, see an advisor, and ask them all of the questions they have,” said Sarah Garcia, an International Student Advisor and Academic Support at Yorkville’s British Columbia campus.
“That’s important because a lot of them might be lost, a lot of them might have questions, and a lot of them might be getting misinformation about things, as well. This gives us a great platform to not only to connect with them on that level, but it also keeps that connection we have between the university and the students alive in a certain sense – because a lot of them need that face-to-face or voice-to-voice interaction.”
Yorkville’s virtual drop-in sessions with Student Services will be taking place as follows:
1) British Columbia On-Campus Students:
– Monday to Friday from 2 to 4 p.m. (Pacific Daylight Time)
2) Ontario On-Campus Students:
– Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 3 to 4 p.m. (Eastern Daylight Time) for Bachelor of Business Administration students; and from 4 to 5 p.m. (Eastern Daylight Time) for Bachelor of Interior Design students.
3) Online Students Taking Courses Out of Yorkville’s New Brunswick-based Campus:
– Schedule: Monday to Friday from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. (Atlantic Daylight Time)
For Sebastian Bustamante – who not only serves as the Manager of Student Services for Yorkville’s New Brunswick-based online program, but is also an online Master of Education student himself – the Zoom Rooms present an opportunity to offer a little clarity in an otherwise confusing time for all involved.
“We think it’s a really good idea to have this place available for students to actually drop in and get a little clarity when it comes to process and procedures and everything that is important to them during this COVID-19 outbreak,” he said, noting that program advisors from all of Yorkville’s online programs are available to answer questions and concerns.
“At the same time, we’re also trying to promote a really positive learning environment and bring back a sense of community to our students.”
Swarna Saini, Yorkville’s Ontario Campus Registrar, said the drop-in Zoom Rooms could prove especially beneficial for many of the university’s young international students – many of whom are feeling especially alone and isolated from loved ones in the midst of this global pandemic.
“For us, this is also about human connection. So many of our international students are just 19, 20 years old, and now they’re here going through this all on their own, far away from family,” she said.
“This gives them someone to reach out to, to help them understand what’s going on and how to stay safe.”