How coronavirus affects the University

This article summarises the most important principles and guidelines, and it will be updated on a continuous basis. Updated on 8 January, 2021.

The development of the coronavirus epidemic will be followed continuously, and the instructions will be updated if necessary. We will prepare for possible sudden changes in the situation during the academic year, in which case we will react quickly and make updates on the university’s coronavirus guidelines. 

Important links

Most recents corona related news article

University’s on-call coronavirus coordinator

If you receive a positive test result in a coronavirus test, inform the university’s on-call coronavirus coordinator without delay:

  • call the number 02 9447 4100 (no text-messages)
  • korona@uniarts.fi

Uniarts Helsinki’s coronavirus-related guidelines

The restrictions on the use of facilities, artistic activities, libraries and leisure-time activities do not concern Uniarts Helsinki’s facilities in Seinäjoki and Kuopio, however, because these facilities are located in areas that are at the baseline level of the pandemic. 

Use of facilities 

Entrance doors to the university’s facilities will stay closed until 31 January, and access is possible only with a personal access key.

People in the facilities should avoid staying in the facilities without a valid reason. As a rule, everyone uses a face mask in the university’s facilities unless they have a health-related reason that prevents it. Everyone is expected to take care of the university’s safety guidelines and keep a safe distance to each other when visiting the facilities. 

Studies 

Students can study in the university facilities as long as they follow the safety guidelines.

Students who fall into high-risk groups must be ensured the possibility to complete studies remotely, when possible. The aim is to arrange teaching remotely also if a student’s close family member is at higher risk from coronavirus and the student feels that they cannot participate in contact teaching because of it. The decision on these kinds of arrangements is made by the head of the unit in charge of organising teaching (dean or the academic director of the Open Campus) or a person authorised by the head of the unit.   

Teaching 

In principle, teaching is organised completely remotely until 28 February.

Teaching that is impossible or unreasonably difficult to organise remotely in order to complete the study attainment will be arranged on campus in a group of max 10 people. Arranging contact teaching requires a permission from the head of the department, degree programme or subject area in question.

Support services are provided only for tasks that are connected with studies, e.g. performance examinations.

Individual practice sessions and independent artistic work related to studies are allowed in the university’s facilities.

Teachers will be ensured the possibility to teach remotely in situations where this is possible when considering the proper management of the job duties in question. Supervisors consider the learning objectives, nature of the job and safety guidelines and decide whether remote teaching is possible. 

Other work 

Other work will continue mostly remotely until 31 July, 2021.

The recommendation is that staff members working in the University Services have the possibility to work remotely some part of the week when this is possible considering the proper management of job duties. 

Uniarts Helsinki’s meetings will be organised remotely.

If an employee is not able to work in the university facilities, the work is performed completely remotely. Supervisors consider the nature of the job and the university’s guidelines and decide whether remote work is possible. Teams are encouraged to discuss work arrangements, duties and objectives regarding remote work so that a smooth and well-planned management of job duties is possible also if the coronavirus situation changes.   

When an employee works remotely, their duties may temporarily differ from their usual job duties. Employees discuss changes to the job duties with their supervisors. If it is not possible to perform the work remotely, and there are no alternative work duties that can be assigned, the HR team should be contacted concerning the matter.  

Artistic activities and invitational guests

Artistic activities will continue in the university’s facilities without outside people in the audience until 31 January.

The galleries of the Academy of Fine Arts will be closed from the public. Visits of experts and the work of pre-examination boards and examiners will be made possible in the gallery facilities by using a sign-up system.

The members of examination boards and examiners are allowed to attend events related to the artistic activities of the Sibelius Academy and Theatre Academy. If the total number of people in the eve

Research 

Research will be carried out mostly remotely until 31 July, 2021.

Research personnel will be ensured the possibility to work in the university facilities in situations where this is necessary when considering the proper management of the job duties in question. Supervisors consider the nature of the job and the university’s guidelines when making decisions on remote work. 

It is recommended that research conferences and symposiums are organised remotely. Public defences of doctoral dissertations and other thesis examinations can be arranged remotely or on campus, as long as the safety regulations are followed. 

Libraries

There are only limited library services available between 11 and 31 January in Helsinki: the library is only open as a self-service library, which means that there will be no customer service in person. Only Uniarts Helsinki students, researchers and staff members can use the library, and access to the library facilities is allowed only with a personal access key.

Visits and travels 

We follow the instructions issued by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and THL as well as hosting foreign visitors. We encourage everyone to avoid travelling abroad. It is recommended that travelling in Finland, too, is limited to only the necessary business trips.

A 10-day self-isolation (i.e. voluntary quarantine) is required of all employees and students who come to Finland from high-incidence countries. During this time, visiting the campus is not allowed. Information on exceptions concerning the quarantine recommendation and on what grounds the self-isolation can be shortened can be found in THL’s aforementioned instructions, for example.

If, after the assessment of the risks, a work or study-related trip abroad is estimated to be necessary and/or if it is critical in terms of the university’s operations, a separate decision on the trip can be made. Decisions on trips to be made by the academies’ staff are made by the dean. As for the staff of the Open Campus, Shared Services and Shared Research, decisions are made by the vice rector in charge of the unit in question.

If, after the assessment of the risks, hosting a visitor from abroad is estimated to be necessary and/or if it is critical in terms of the university’s operations, a separate decision on the visit can be made. The decision on hosting a visitor or visitors at the academy is made by the dean of the academy. As for visitors connected to the Open Campus, Shared Services and Shared Research, decisions are made by the vice rector in charge of the operations in question.  

If the employee travels abroad for a reason that isn’t related to their work at Uniarts Helsinki, they must contact their supervisor in advance to discuss how a possible quarantine would affect their ability to perform their job duties at Uniarts Helsinki.

Exchanges

Uniarts Helsinki will welcome and send out exchange students from and to other universities starting. The exchange agreements are conditional, and applicants are informed on possible restrictions concerning travel and start of studies due to the coronavirus situation. The decisions on exchanges are made by the academy that is either sending out or receiving students.  

Leisure-time activities

Leisure-time activities of both individuals and groups in Uniarts Helsinki’s facilities will stay suspended until 28 February. Study-related practice is not considered leisure-time activities. 

The Theatre Academy gym will stay closed until 28 February.

Organising joint recreational events in the university facilities

The preparedness team has decided that due to the ongoing coronavirus situation, using Uniarts Helsinki’s facilities for student events or other recreational events is not allowed.

We also recommend that staff and students refrain from meeting one another in joint recreational events indoors outside of the university’s facilities.

Face masks

It is strongly recommended that a mask is worn whenever operating in the university facilities.

Preparedness for changes 

Uniarts Helsinki prepares for possible changes in the coronavirus situation by maintaining its preparedness to switch over to exclusively remote studies and work during the academic year. If necessary, the rector may call upon the university’s preparedness team to support decision-making in related matters. 

Preparedness team and coronavirus team

In accordance with its preparedness plan, Uniarts Helsinki has a preparedness team led by Rector Jari Perkiömäki.   

To keep the university updated on matters involving the coronavirus, its members also include Vice Rector Lauri Väkevä, Director of Communications and External Relations Eveliina Olsson, Senior Head of Academic Affairs Sanna Kotajärvi-Söderholm, Senior Facilities Manager Antti Halm, Service and Personnel Manager Mikael Vänttinen and Vice Rector Jaana Erkkilä-Hill.

The secretary of the team is Occupational Health and Safety Manager Jyri Pulkkinen, who can also give further information on how to prepare for the coronavirus outbreak: jyri.pulkkinen@uniarts.fi050-5722058  

By decision of the Rector, Uniarts Helsinki has set up a new coronavirus team tasked with compiling hands-on coronavirus-related instructions that affect the university’s daily operations and artistic activities. The team is also responsible for making decisions on practical arrangements during the coronavirus epidemic. 

The team’s members are Senior Head of Academic Affairs Sanna Kotajärvi-Söderholm, Technical Manager and Vice Occupational Health and Safety Manager Marko Myöhänen, Technical Manager and Occupational Health and Safety Manager Jyri Pulkkinen, Facilities Manager Matti Rautio, Service and Personnel Manager Mikael Vänttinen, and Communications Planner Mirva Niemi. The team’s work is steered by the university’s emergency preparedness team.

What to do if you suspect that you have been infected  

When you have symptoms of a flu, stay at home immediately, because the infection risk is highest during the first 2-3 days, when it is important to avoid contacts with other people and to take care of good hand and coughing hygiene. 

The THL website lists coughing, sore throat, fever, shortness of breath, muscle pain and headache as symptoms of a coronavirus infection.