Opt for the online drink, save a life
Welcome back everyone and a special welcome to your new life here to all the new students! It must have been difficult trying to move here and start your journey at the TU/e, but you made it, so: congratulations!
Now, I hope you settle in comfortably and I understand this is usually the time for drinks and mingling, making new friends in this new city - but, unfortunately, that’s not how things work now. Many of you have arrived from abroad or from other cities in the Netherlands, and so, this requires some of you to be quarantined for ten days or so in order to ensure the health and safety of everyone on campus. To my surprise, this has not been the case and many have decided to throw parties, attend events or drinks organised by associations, so on and so forth.
To that extent, there are several public health and safety guidelines communicated by the Dutch government (RIVM) as well as the TU/e which highlight the importance of keeping yourself and others safe through the following measures:
- Avoid busy places and keep your distance
- Make sure you can always keep 1.5 metres distance from others.
- If this is not possible, go somewhere else.
- Work from home as much as possible.
- Avoid rush hours of public transport.
- Quarantine for 10-15 days
- For EU countries, traveling from countries like France, Spain, Bulgaria, Romania and Croatia (and more; please check this site from the Dutch government) are asked to quarantine as they are considered as high-risk locations.
- For most of the other non-EU countries (but look on the aformentioned site which ones are excluded) which are all considered to be high-risk locations, that means, you are asked to quarantine.
I understand how hard and disappointing this may be; I, myself, am in quarantine with five more days to go as of right now. I know the frustration because of the metaphorical and physical rain pouring down on our parades but please, we all have a duty to ensure that all this hard work and exhausting dedication shown by the doctors/nurses/first aid as well as the teachers, student officers, etc, is not gone to waste.
Brace yourselves for a great year ahead of you, but don’t forget your health and safety. Please also pay special attention if you live on campus in the Aurora or Luna buildings as they are meant for international students traveling from all around the world and building managers have made it very clear what you can or can not do (like meeting in groups of more than six and such). The pandemic and how we react to it are two aspects of our lives which will be permanently ever-changing. So, don’t forget to wash your hands and to wear your masks.