Most programs at Algonquin College that require internships or work placements are going forward under modified conditions due to provincial regulations aimed at preventing the spread of COVID-19, according to a statement by Chris Janzen, senior vice president academic at Algonquin College.
The majority of internships and work placements are proceeding either virtually or through face-to-activities restricted to 10 or fewer persons until at least Feb. 19, 2021.
However, some internships and work placements have been deferred until public health conditions improve, according to Janzen.
While no exact figures were provided, the provincial shutdown has “impacted a minority of clinical placements in the Faculty of Health, Public Safety and Community Studies (e.g. Paramedic),” Janzen said.
The exact conditions of deferrals vary from program to program. In some deferred programs “placement hours might remain the same but be condensed into a shorter period once learners are able to return,” Janzen said. “In other cases, a combination of virtual and deferred activity might be explored.”
Given the unpredictability of future public health conditions, the exact duration of the deferrals is unknown, and some programs may be deferred longer than others.
“When deferrals are necessary, programs continue to work with community partners to secure placement opportunities in anticipation of the easing of provincial guidelines associated with the reopening of Ontario,” said Janzen.
Notably, Winter 2021 co-ops are up 29 per cent or Winter 2021 when compared to Winter 2020, according to Janzen, despite the changing nature of many of them.
Programs that involve apprenticeships have all gone ahead, though were delayed by three weeks from Jan. 4 to Jan 25.