Should Universiti Malaya Students Be Going Back to Hometowns?
In regard with the COVID-19 situation updates of March 2020
Over the past week, there have been at least 3 major announcements issued by the authorities of Kementerian Kesihatan Malaysia, Jabatan Pendidikan Tinggi, and UM Deputy Vice Chancellor (Academic and International), that has resulted in cancellation, suspension or postponement of physical classes and all student activities that require face-to-face engagement.
However, there has yet to be official statements on whether ‘lock-down’ policy would be imposed upon UM Campus. From my humble knowledge, 2 public universities have already issued their stance on students returning to hometowns.
UniMAP activates e-learning, at the same time restricts students from going back to hometowns: https://bit.ly/2TSbqJy
USM advises students not to leave campus to go back to hometowns in official statement: https://www.facebook.com/152558971471811/posts/2920223944705286/
I am sure that as of this moment, a certain portion of UM students have already left the campus for their hometowns; so the message I intend to carry out within this post is mainly directed towards students who still have not left the campus, but are considering whether to do so or not.
I must clarify, this is purely my personal perspective, with no authorised reference from official or professional representations, however I do believe it complies with the available guidelines as of now, most importantly on the basis of ‘rational analysis of VERIFIED sources of information’.
My points of consideration can be transposed into the questions a student can ask themselves before making the decision to go back home or not.
EDIT: The FOREMOST consideration, is whether you YOURSELF have symptoms or suspected being in contact with potential COVID-19 carrier? If yes, the most relevant thing to do instantly is to seek a medical screening.
i. Are you a student living on-campus or off-campus?
ii. By checking verified sources of information and statistics, is your current accommodation considered less-risky than your hometown?
iii. How far is the travel-distance between your current accommodation and your hometown? And
iv. What are the possible modes of transport for you to travel back to your hometown?
I believe that these considerations not only will tell us whether we should go back to hometowns or not, but also identify the necessary precautions for any decision we make in the end.
Everyone has a responsibility to minimize the risk factors.
Once again I reinstate that the content of this post is not derived from official or professional statements. Also, when UM declares official policies on the matter, the official statements should be preceded in priority.
And also, this post and infographic merely serves as a guideline, sadly to say NOBODY can provide an absolute answer to the consequence of any action, therefore, your decision is still upon your full responsibility.