IPTs brace for return of over one million students to campus with strict SOPs

A daunting task awaits the management of all public higher learning institutions (IPTA) and private higher learning institutions (IPTS) which will open their campus door to 1.16 million students tomorrow.

Apart from the standard operating procedures (SOP) set by the National Security Council (MKN), the management of each IPT and IPTS has also issued their own guidelines to ensure that stringent precautions are in place and the virus does not spread.

Universiti Utara Malaysia (UUM) in Sintok, Kedah will welcome 3,000 students back to campus and upon arrival, each of them will be taken to a special area to undergo a Covid-19 screening test.

They will only be allowed to enter dormitories or Inapan Siswa (Inasis) if their test results come back negative.

                           

UUM Deputy vice-chancellor (Research and Innovation) Prof Haim Hilman Abdullah who is also performing the functions of vice-chancellor, said students who tested positive would be taken to the quarantine centre, operated by the UUM Health Centre.

“No family members are allowed to enter the Inasis compound and students will be assisted by staff on duty during the admission process,” he said adding that only fully vaccinated students are allowed to return to campus.

Haim said students who want to see their lecturers are required to make an appointment and adhere to the SOP set during the face-to-face meeting.

Universiti Sultan Mizan Zainal Abidin (UniSZA) in Terengganu meanwhile, requires students to undergo Covid-19 screening prior to returning to campus.

Once they have arrived, students are not allowed to leave campus for a week or meet outsiders to ensure that there is no transmission of Covid-19 infection.

Prof Fazli Adam, who is performing the duties of UniSZA vice-chancellor, said the on-campus teaching and learning process (PdP) would be implemented in three stages at the university’s three branches, namely in Gong Badak, Kuala Terengganu and Besut.

Under the first phase, 2,500 out of the 12,050 students who have been fully vaccinated and with needs will be allowed to return to campus.

Universiti Malaysia Sarawak (Unimas) has taken the initiative to come up with its own online student admission application system that can be accessed at entry.ia.unimas.my to facilitate their return.

Unimas assistant vice-chancellor (Leadership and Development) Prof Datuk Mohd Fadzil Abd Rahman said the system was developed to enable the faculty and Unimas Covid-19 committee to evaluate the application submitted by the students based on the requirements and conditions set by the university.

Mohd Fadzil who is also Unimas Covid-19 Committee chairman said among students that are allowed to return to campus are those who need to conduct practicals at laboratories such as students from the Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Faculty of Engineering, Faculty of Built Environment and Faculty of Cognitive Science and Development.

“This is followed by B40 students who require access to internet facilities. We (Unimas) understand the situation of some students, especially those living in rural areas who may have difficulties getting internet access,” he told Bernama.

Universiti Malaysia Terengganu (UMT) will provide two isolation centres to accommodate students with symptoms such as fever and cough even though their Covid-19 screening test results return negative.

Its vice chancellor Prof Mazlan Abd Ghaffar said under the first stage, a total of 2,269 students would return to campus on October 17.

He added that 5,039 out of the total 10,969 UMT students have completed their Covid-19 vaccination, while 2,184 received the first dose of the vaccine.

Universiti Teknologi Malaysia (UTM) deputy vice-chancellor (Student Affairs) Prof Shamsul Sahibuddin said the university would conduct a drive-through saliva-based Covid-19 test on each student returning to campus.

“Those who are tested negative can go straight to the hostel while students whose results come back positive will be taken to the Isolation and Quarantine Centre,” he said, adding that UTM would also allow students to enter and exit their hostel from 7am to 10pm.

Meanwhile, Sidma College Corporate Marketing director Azlina Ngatimin said the maximum number of students allowed in each class at the college which is located in Bundusan, Sabah, was set at 30.

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