New funding for COVID-19 research
Hamilton philanthropists Charles and Margaret Juravinski have made a new gift of $3.3 million to accelerate COVID-19-related and brain health research, much of it supporting key research at McMaster.
The couple, who are 90 and 88 years old, had already created an endowment of $100 million — one of Canada’s largest ever planned legacy gifts — to support collaborative research between McMaster, Hamilton Health Sciences and St. Joseph’s Healthcare, but decided to accelerate their giving with the immediate need of the COVID-19 pandemic.
“We want everyone to be free from this terrible virus, and to be able to live and move about without fear of spreading or picking it up,” the Juravinskis wrote in a letter to the community.
“We’d like to see this happen during what remains of our lifetimes, and we are excited to have the chance to help.”
The gift, through the newly formed Juravinski Research Institute, will provide funding for eight projects, including COVID-19 research on testing systems, the efficacy of masks and respirators and the impact on emergency departments, and research on brain health. Read about all the research projects on the Brighter World website.
Helping employees work at home
The university is reimbursing expenses for supplies required for employees to work effectively at home. Allowable expenses, as approved by a supervisor, range from office items such as stationery and printer cartridges to overcharges for cellphone and internet use. Information for reimbursing expenses related to working remotely during the COVID-19 pandemic can be found on the university’s Financial Affairs site.
As the number of people on campus has reduced dramatically in accordance with government direction to stay home, the majority of buildings have been closed. A small number of buildings remain open on campus, including the McMaster University Student Centre, where the pharmacy is open, and the Commons Building, as well as critical research facilities. Essential workers who are maintaining core services on campus or conducting research activities deemed essential at this time remain on campus, and are able to access their buildings securely. Any critical issues related to building access should be directed to Security Services at 905-522-4135.
New options for final grades
As part of the University’s commitment to supporting undergraduate students in a way that is fair and equitable during the COVID-19 pandemic, the university is offering the option of conventional grades versus Pass (P) or No Credit (NC) for a final year mark. These options are intended to provide some relief and additional options to students who passed their course(s) but are unhappy with their grade(s), or those who did not pass.
The deadline to submit requests for a change of grade to P or NC is Friday May 15, 2020. The university has also extended the deadline for late withdrawal until Friday, May 15, 2020.
For more information and instructions, visit the Winter 2020 Grades Procedure FAQs at the Office of the Registrar website.
University Library support
With everything that is most unusual about this end of term, what continues just as usual is the crush of final essays, term papers, assignments and scholarly research. To help with that, the University’s Librarian has posted a letter on the library site, highlighting the many digital resources and other services available through the library. More than 1.4 million titles including over 100,000 electronic journals and more than 600,000 e-books can be accessed 24/7; print journal volumes, articles and book pages can be scanned and sent directly; many publishers have opened up their content temporarily to help instructors and students through COVID-19.