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The University of Southampton – our campuses will be open in September

A message from Professor Mark E. Smith, President and Vice-Chancellor

We continue to live in uncertain times, in which making future plans with confidence can be difficult. That is particularly so for those of you looking forward to starting or continuing your experience as a university student in the autumn.

At Southampton, our position is clear. We are looking forward to welcoming as many new and returning students from the UK and around the world as possible to our campuses in Southampton and Winchester for the start of the new academic year on 28 September 2020. A small number of postgraduate courses will start later than this and we will confirm these very shortly directly to students.

We are aiming to provide a significant face-to-face component to your education as prevailing conditions at the time allow, combined in our new blended approach with active independent and group online learning. We expect that as the COVID-19 pandemic develops, the balance between face-to-face and online education will need to evolve in response. We are planning for that. Our commitment to you is that whatever the balance, we will be supporting you as you learn and giving you the best possible opportunities to enjoy and benefit from your experience as a Southampton student.

We will ensure we put in place all the protective measures, including limiting numbers and gatherings, required to ensure we provide a safe campus environment to the highest possible standards.The safety and wellbeing of our students and staff will always be our top priority, we will at all times be guided by the prevailing government and medical advice.

Many of you will have questions about your course, your accommodation, and the social activities you will be able to enjoy at university in the autumn. With official guidance changing regularly, we are continuing to work through the practical details of how we will provide a rich and fulfilling education experience whilst ensuring adequate social distancing in our teaching, communal and social areas. We will provide practical support to help any of our international students who may be subject to temporary UK quarantine rules.

These are all complex issues and we – like the Government – do not have all the answers yet. We expect to be able to provide greater clarity to you by the end of June.

Until then our message is clear: our campuses will be open in September.

Professor Mark E. Smith

President and Vice-Chancellor

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