Hope this mail find you well at this unusual springtime.
Ever since the outbreak of the COVID-19 pneumonia at the end of January, IIE has received tons of encouragement and support from many of you all around the globe. What you have provided has stirred in us Chinese people a deep feeling of warmth and deserves our sincerest gratitude!
By now, significant progress has been made in China and the overall situation is changing for the better, yet it is still too early to relax vigilance considering the possibility of epidemic reversal and the fact that new cases have been confirmed in many other countries one after another. So, in light of the current situation, for your own security, we kindly suggest you temporarily stop travel plans that may involve cross-cities, cross-regions, cross-countries and cross-continents transport, no matter you are in China or elsewhere.
It is our hope that, regardless of where you are, you will take good care of both yourselves and your beloved ones. Your well being is our top concern.
Recently, we have received inquiries regarding the arrangement of the new semester. After taking into consideration the epidemic situation both in China and worldwide, we hereby inform you of the following matters. Your understanding and cooperation will be highly appreciated.
I．The University will NOT open before the earliest possible date of March 23 and the specific date is yet to be decided.
At present, the epidemic situation is still changing and developing, and campus prevention is one of the key points of epidemic prevention and control. We will inform you of the return date as soon as possible so that you will have enough time to buy tickets in advance. Learning at homeand staycation are strongly suggested during this period of emergency.
II. DO NOT return to the University before March 23, 2020.
As part of the measures against the epidemic, all hotels and hostels in Guangzhou have been shut down for the time beingand universities have closed the campuses. So, for those students who try to return to the University before the semester begins (earliest possible time of March 23), you might probably find yourselves faced with an accommodation problem both on campus and at hotels.
Those returning from the seriously epidemic-hit areas will be required to be quarantined.
III. Teaching plan
We are now working on formulating teaching plan for the new semester, which will be later published on WeChat account (WeChat groups)and through emails.
IV. Visa Policy
According to the latest policies from China immigration authorities, during the period of COVID-19 epidemic:(1) students in Chinese mainland who find their visas almost expire can have their stay period automatically extended by TWO MONTHS. Within this period, they do not have to go through procedures for the extension. They can still stay in or exit Chinese mainland legitimately; (2) students outside Chinese mainland who find their visas expired when coming to Chinese mainland can apply for port visas after arrival. However, port visas application is subject to specific regulations of different ports, for this type of students, to apply for short-term visas before coming to Chinese mainland is more recommended.
During this period of COVID-19 prevention and control, we hope that all of you will stay healthy and pay attention to notifications from the University. We are very much looking forward to meeting you again at this secure, hygienic, and lively GDUFS you have always known.
Thanks again for all the understanding and support you have shown to IIE, the University and the whole country during this war against the epidemic. No matter where you are, please always remember that “IIE Loves You “and we are here for you at GDUFS.
Institute for International Education,
Guangdong University of Foreign Studies
March 3, 2020