We have had an intensive spring, where both staff and students have had to adapt to a completely new reality. It has been tough for many of us, but I am glad to hear of many good examples from teaching where the transition to online education has gone better than expected. I am convinced that this trying time will result in experiences that will enrich our work long after the pandemic has passed.
At the end of May, the Public Health Agency of Sweden will announce whether schools can reopen in the autumn or not, and many universities are awaiting these recommendations. To facilitate planning for our teachers, the University of Gothenburg’s vice-chancellor has already announced that we will focus on continuing distance education until the end of October. But we are aware that campus-based teaching may be relevant sooner and that we must adapt to any decisions by the Public Health Agency and the government.
In the shadow of the pandemic, we also continue to work on other issues that are important to our faculty, such as the new medical program. Just last week, the Swedish Higher Education Authority (UKÄ) conducted interviews as part of its assessment process for granting degree awarding powers for the new program. These included interviews with Vice-Chancellor Eva Wiberg, our Vice Dean for Education Silvana Naredi and myself. I felt that it was a fruitful interview, and that UKÄ asked many good and relevant questions. The application process for degree-awarding powers has involved not only the Medical Program Committee but also teachers and those responsible from all semesters of the program. I want to take this opportunity to express my thanks for such thorough and excellent work. The new medical program for which we are now applying to UKÄ is well-though out and cohesive. UKÄ will announce its decision in the autumn and, if everything goes according to plan, we will receive the first batch of students on the new medical program in autumn 2021.
Shortly, we will also be notified whether the ALF evaluation, which is planned for next year, will be postponed due to COVID-19. Both our region and we are well prepared to take on the evaluation, but other regions, where the spread of infection has had major consequences, have noted that they would like to see a postponement. The issue will be discussed at the national ALF meeting on June 1.
Join us today, Wednesday May 27, at 9:00–11:30, through Zoom for a seminar with research presentations from four prominent young researchers who have been top ranked by experts as candidates for two positions as assistant professors in medicine and health sciences research. This is part of a welcomed strategic, wide-ranging call for applications by our Faculty Board. The program is available here: https://akademiliv.se/2020/05/65799 The seminar is open for registration up until it starts. Use this link to register: https://gu-se.zoom.us/webinar/register/WN_GP_X6S3DSWK0Zo89yVpX0Q.
Make sure to get out and enjoy our first days of summer!