Taking care of ourselves and each other

Taking care of ourselves and each other

Dear colleagues

It’s been 18 months since the pandemic first resulted in unprecedented changes to our everyday personal and professional lives.

We have all faced challenges we couldn’t possibly have previously anticipated, but in the face of those we have successfully continued to deliver services to our students and staff.

We remain indebted to our colleagues who continued to work on campus, and recognise the efforts of others who set up makeshift offices at home in kitchens, bedrooms, hallways and even attics while also navigating the routine demands of caring and parental responsibilities.

With Welcome Week now coming to an end and our new academic year starting on Monday we are entering a new phase, and it is only natural that this latest transition may cause anxiety for some. However, despite the long absence from campus, we and others have found it only takes a few days of being back on campus to feel more comfortable.

Everyone’s pace of adjustment will be different and that is why we are reminding you of the importance of looking after yourself and looking out for your work colleagues. Hopefully the following provides some helpful pointers and reminders.

Working practices

The start of the academic year is always a busy time. To help reduce work pressures we want to reinforce initiatives introduced earlier in the year:

  • Emails – where possible try not to send out of hours and weekends
  • Fridays – where possible these should be kept free of internal meetings
  • Workload Reduction Toolkit– provides guidance to help teams make decisions about workload

Support services

Covid-19 information checklist

Finally, given the volume of information and guidance relating to Covid-19, we have pulled together this checklist to signpost to current Covid-19 information across a range of topics including vaccination, testing, health and safety and our Covid campus guidelines and pledge. It will be updated as and when guidance evolves.  

We hope the above information is useful but if you need further help or support, please speak to your line manager or email coronavirus@abdn.ac.uk. We have got through the most challenging of times and we can make this next transition successfully together as a community.  Thank you for your continued hard work, dedication and support for one another during these constantly changing times.

Karl and Tracey

Professor Karl Leydecker Tracey Slaven
Senior Vice-Principal University Secretary & Chief Operating Officer