Category Archives: Student covid

Templeman library from outside with two people walking by

Covid-19 update: Returning home, staying on campus for Christmas and Spring Term

From Professor Richard Reece | Deputy Vice-Chancellor Education and Student Experience

As we reach the final weeks of term, I would like to start by thanking you for your help in keeping our community safe with Covid-19 cases remaining low at the University of Kent.  

As you may have seen, further restrictions were announced yesterday in response to the national rise in Covid-19 omicron variant cases – this makes the additional guidance I shared with you last week on face coverings and testing all the more important. In the meantime, all face-to-face teaching and student support services will continue as they are for the rest of this term. 

More widely, I wanted to advise you on how to travel safely home for Christmas, highlight the support available to you if you are staying on campus for the winter break, and to let you know what you can expect in the Spring Term. 

Travelling home safely for Christmas 

The Government is asking that students take a lateral flow test before travelling home to help stop the spread of Covid-19. Please remember to add your test result to NHS Test and Trace, even if it is negative. We have testing centres on campus, where you can have a test or pick up an at home kit. Testing kits will also start being delivered to on-campus student rooms from today and should be completed by Tuesday 14 December to allow time for isolation before Christmas if needed.  

If you are planning to travel abroad, make sure you check the Government’s travel advice before you leave.

Staying on campus for the winter break 

If you are staying with us over the Christmas period, please can you let us know by completing the online form if you have not already done so. This will help us to support you over the break and let you know about festive activities. 

See our Christmas on campus webpages for facility opening times, events, and support.  

Spring Term plans 

Subject to Government guidance at the time, we plan to deliver most teaching in person from January 2022, including lectures. Most examinations will however, continue to be delivered online and we will provide more exams guidance in the Spring Term.  

Remote study is still available in the Spring Term for students who need it. Find out more about remote study online.  

When returning to campus for the Spring Term, the Government is asking that you take a lateral flow test before you travel. If you are returning from abroad, please check the Government’s travel advice before you make travel arrangements.  

As always, if you have any questions or concerns, please get in touch by emailing  

Have a wonderful Christmas and I look forward to welcoming you back to campus in 2022. 

All best wishes 


Professor Richard Reece | DVC Education and Student Experience 

Captured inside a clinical setting, a health care provider and patient, consult on vaccine options

Vaccine centre volunteers needed (Medway)

Lordswood Vaccination Centre are looking to expand their pool of fantastic volunteers to support the delivery of the Covid-19 vaccine. Volunteers are required to welcome patients, ask some basic questions and direct patients through the vaccine centre ensuring the efficient and safe running of the process. Sessions run Monday – Saturday and are split into Morning sessions (08.30-13.30) and Afternoon sessions (14.30-19.30)There will be doctors, nurses and non-clinical staff on site to support you in your duties. The Vaccination Centre are offering unlimited hot drinks, snacks and regular breaks throughout the sessions and free on-site parking.

If you would like to register your interest or have any further questions please email:

Canterbury Covid-19 vaccination site

Walk-ins for the Covid-19 vaccination are currently running every week day, between 9.00-16.00 at:

Sea Cadets building
Vauxhall Road,

You can find more walk-in Covid-19 vaccination sites in Kent and Medway online.

Students and staff can also book online via: national booking service, or by phoning 119.

The vaccine clinic is available for anyone who needs their first, second or booster vaccine.

Now is a great time to get your vaccine before Christmas. Helping to protect your friends and family.

man waring mask on bus

Updated Covid-19 guidance

From Professor Richard Reece | Deputy Vice-Chancellor Education and Student Experience

Following Government guidance in response to the new Covid-19 variant, we are taking extra measures to ensure the continued safety of our students, staff and everyone in our University community.

From tomorrow (Tuesday 30 November), we will be expecting everyone on campus – unless they have medical exemptions – to wear face coverings in all teaching spaces and communal areas. This is to enable all of us to undertake planned activities as safely and securely as we can. Face coverings are available free of charge from any student reception desk.  

We are also stressing the importance of regular testing – everyone coming onto campus should continue to take a Covid lateral flow test regularly and at least twice a week. You can get walk-in tests or pick up take-home kits from the Old Bank on our Canterbury campus or the Old Sports Hall at Medway, or order them online.  If you’re using a home test kit, please remember to report your lateral flow test results to the NHS, using the postcode CT2 7FS, whether they are positive or negative.    

If you have symptoms or if you do test positive, you must self-isolate for 10 days from the day your symptoms started and get a PCR test as quickly as possible. Please follow Government guidance at all times.

Don’t forget that from tomorrow, you will also need to take a PCR test, regardless of whether you have symptoms, if you are travelling to the UK from abroad. We are currently reviewing the new guidance and will be updating our coronavirus webpages shortly.

Vaccinations are also critical in national efforts to counter Covid-19. If you qualify for a booster jab, we would strongly encourage you to get one if you can.

As always, if you have any questions or need further support, please email

The health and safety of our students, staff and University community is always at the front of our minds. By taking these extra measures, we can all work together to protect each other in the run-up to the Christmas festivities.

With all good wishes,


Professor Richard Reece | Deputy Vice-Chancellor Education and Student Experience

Image of coffee cup with text 'Medway students: Get a Covid test on campus and have a coffee on us'

Medway students: Take a Covid test on campus, and have a tea/coffee on us

It’s important that we all continue to get regular Covid tests – until 17 December, every time you get a Covid test on campus, you can claim a free tea/coffee on us.

Getting regular Covid tests on campus is quick and easy to do, and it’s a way of helping to keep everyone on campus and your friends and family safe.

Through our work with Medway Council and the universities at Medway we’re encouraging you to get regular Covid tests on campus, and we’ll offer you a free tea/coffee in exchange.

Simply take the registration card provided at the test centre on campus to the Deep End and have a tea/coffee on us. Thank you for helping to keep us all safe.


When is the test site open? You can find opening times on the Medway Council website.

How do I claim my free drink? Simply take the registration card provided by the test site to the Deep End, and order your drink.  The card will be stamped and it can only be used once.

Can I claim a free drink for collecting home test kits? No, this is only for tests carried out on campus.  The home test kit collection service remains available.

Can I claim my free drink after 17 December? No this closes on 17 December 2021 and all free drinks must be claimed by that date.

covid test kit

Covid-19: Working together to keep each other safe

As I am sure you are aware, recent weeks have seen a national rise in the number of Covid cases in the UK. While we do not currently have any major concerns locally, this is an important reminder to all of us that, unfortunately, Covid has not gone away, and we all need to continue to keep safety at the front of our minds, especially while on our campuses.

Face coverings and indoor spaces

We strongly encourage and recommend that you wear face coverings in crowded indoor spaces, including teaching and study spaces or while standing in queues. Face coverings are available free of charge at all student reception desks – wearing one can really help keep each other safe.

All of our rooms on campus have been assessed and adapted where necessary to meet Government ventilation guidelines. If you are meeting up with friends, then try to do this outside if you can – avoiding busy indoor spaces is a big part of stopping the spread.

Testing, reporting and vaccinations

Everyone coming onto campus should continue to take a Covid lateral flow test twice a week. You can get walk-in tests or pick up take-home kits from the Old Bank on our Canterbury campus or the Old Sports Hall at Medway, or order them online.

It also really helps us if you report the results of your tests to the NHS whenever you take them, whether they are positive or negative – instructions on how to do this should come with the testing kit itself. If you do have symptoms or test positive, you must self-isolate and get a PCR test as quickly as possible. Let us know that you are isolating so we can make sure you get the support you need – if your PCR test is positive, you will need to self-isolate for 10 days from when your symptoms started.

Lastly, vaccinations continue to be key to minimising the impact of Covid –  if you haven’t already, we strongly recommend getting two jabs if you can. Watch out for the Government’s Grab a Jab campaign for local walk-in centres.

Keeping going

I have been hugely impressed by the way all of you have worked together to keep each other safe as you have come back onto campus, and am really pleased that we have managed to keep infection numbers low to date. All of us have a part to play in continuing to keep our campuses safely open, so let’s continue to be careful in crowded indoor spaces, taking regular tests and getting vaccinated if you can.

With all good wishes,


Professor Richard Reece | Deputy Vice-Chancellor – Education and Student Experience

Kent logo

Welcome to the Autumn Term

From Professor Richard Reece | Deputy Vice-Chancellor Education and Student Experience

A warm welcome to all of you to the start of the 2021/22 academic year at Kent. I am delighted to see so many of you back on our campuses and to have so much more face-to-face teaching planned after a year and a half of so much uncertainty. You should all be enormously proud of your efforts in getting to this point, and I look forward to following your success with us across the year.

Along with ensuring you have the best possible experience with us, we will need to continue to focus on keeping our community safe as we return this term. Covid has sadly not gone away and we all have a part to play our part in keeping cases low. We are also fully prepared in the event that cases rise significantly.

Face coverings

We are strongly encouraging and recommending that everyone wears face masks in crowded indoor spaces, including teaching spaces or corridors. These are optional, but wearing one can help keep each other safe – we also need to be mindful that both fellow students and staff may be anxious about coming back together, so we need to think of each other in how we behave in crowded areas.


Remember to keep on testing twice a week as you come onto campus – find out more about how you can pick up a kit and do your bit.


I am really pleased so many of you have already had your Covid vaccines – we have an NHS bus on our Medway campus today for those that would still like to get theirs, and hope to have one on our Canterbury campus shortly (unfortunately today’s visit has been cancelled). Do watch out for the Government’s Grab A Jab campaign for walk-in vaccine centres too.

Good luck this term

There is plenty to look forward to in the weeks ahead outside of your studies, including our Virtual Employability Fest from 11-22 October featuring the South East Virtual Careers Fair on 20 October. For more information on this and all our events, keep an eye on the Student Guide, our student events calendar and our Kent Uni Student app. I hope you all get a chance to explore the best of what Kent has to offer and wish you all the very best for the rest of the term.

With all best wishes,


Professor Richard Reece | Deputy Vice-Chancellor Education and Student Experience

Students sat at bench

Your views on the Autumn term

For the attention of all students returning to study 2021/2022 

I hope you are well and making the most of the summer break. My name’s Mica and I’m the new Head of Student Experience at Kent. I’ll be working closely with Richard Reece to make sure your time with us is as rewarding and enjoyable as possible – we’re really looking forward to opening up our campuses once more and welcoming you back in September. 

Returners Survey 

To do that as well as we can, I need to hear from you! We want to get your views on how you’re feeling about the new term – what you’re looking forward to, what you might be nervous about or what you’d like to see us do differently. We’ve put together a Returners Pulse Survey to get your feedback on a range of topics – this should take around 5 minutes to complete so do let us know your thoughts before the survey closes on Friday 3 September. 

Student WebChat: Thursday 19 August 

Alongside that, I’d also love it if you could join me and Richard at the first of a new series of WebChats to talk about how next year is shaping up. After months of remote learning, we’re determined to deliver as much in-person teaching as possible, while prioritising your safety throughout. Weekly face-to-face sessions will be at the heart of this, supported by large online lectures where these have proved to work well. At the WebChat, we will explain more about the thinking behind our plans and how we intend to transition to a full campus timetable by the Spring. 

Register your interest to join us from 13.00 – 14.00 on Thursday 19 August. You can also use the form to send us any questions in advance – I look forward to seeing you there. 

It’s been such a challenging year for all of us, and many of you may have mixed feelings about the weeks ahead. We are here to support you throughout and help you concentrate on the things that matter – shaping your future with us and making connections at Kent that last a lifetime. In the meantime, enjoy the rest of the summer and we can’t wait to see our campuses come alive again when we come back together in September. 

With all best wishes, 


Mica Rose | Head of Student Experience 


Kent Summer Fest cancellation and travelling home

For the attention of those students currently living or studying on campus or visiting to access campus facilities.

As many of you have already heard, yesterday we had to take the difficult decision to cancel all remaining non-essential on-campus student activities a week earlier than planned. This is due to a rapid increase in the number of positive cases of Covid-19 among students on the Canterbury campus. 

While we have no evidence that the rise in cases is linked to our events or the use of campus facilities, given the national picture and the number of you that are needing to self-isolate both on and off campus, we needed to take this step as a precaution.

We know how disappointing this news is, and we share your frustration that the ongoing pandemic has once again disrupted our plans to come together. For those who have booked onto paid activities, event organisers will be in touch soon with further details regarding refunds.

With the exception of those already self-isolating, we are now advising anyone who was planning to leave campus at the end of this week to travel home at the earliest opportunity to ensure we do all we can to minimise the risk of further cases.

Returning home

Walk-in on-site asymptomatic (symptom free) lateral flow tests are available in the Sibson Building from 09.30 – 19.15 daily where you can also pick up home testing kits.

If you do need to self-isolate, we will do everything we can to support you while you remain on campus.

If you need to stay on campus

For those of you who need to stay in accommodation longer for study or personal reasons, including KMMS students and postgraduates, the campus remains open providing essential services and support.

As you know, over the last 18 months we have introduced a considerable number of effective on-campus Covid-secure measures and the University and Kent Union will be continuing to provide a range of essential campus facilities and services including the Templeman Library, study areas, shops and Rutherford Dining Hall.

Staying safe 

Whatever your plans, please do remember that despite the gradual easing of lockdown restrictions, Covid-19 is still with us and it is vital that we all:

Thank you for your continued understanding in this, and for the exemplary way you have all approached this most challenging of years. I wish you the very best for the summer break.


Professor Richard Reece | Deputy Vice-Chancellor Education and Student Experience

hand sanitiser

Important Covid-19 update

There have been some important recent changes to the behaviour of the virus and to the advice that we need to follow in order to keep ourselves and our wider communities safe.

The Delta variant of Covid-19 is currently the most common in many regions of the UK including Kent and has changed how the virus is spreading. It has also changed the symptoms that are associated with infection with a headache, sore throat and runny nose now being commonly reported.

In young people, Covid infection can get mistaken for a cold or even hay fever.

Despite the relatively low-numbers of cases and the gradual easing of lockdown restrictions, Covid-19 is still with us and it is vital that we all:

Returning home

Please remember to get tested before leaving for home:

The FAQs below will help you understand what you need to do to keep you, your friends and family and our community safe.

I am sure we are all looking forward to the rest of the summer and hopefully some much improved weather. Please join us in doing everything we can to make sure we get to make the most of the summer and control the spread of Covid-19.

Please contact if you have any questions or concerns.

Best wishes


Dr Lucy Foley | Director of Student Services and University Public Health Lead


Revised Covid-19 FAQs

What are the revised symptoms of Covid-19?

People with Covid-19 have had a wide range of symptoms reported – ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. Anyone can have mild to severe symptoms. People with these symptoms may have Covid-19:

  • Fever or chills
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue, muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat, congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea, vomiting or diarrhoea

What do I do if I think I might have symptoms?

If you think you might have symptoms of Covid-19, regardless of any asymptomatic (lateral flow) test results you may have recently had, self-isolate immediately, get a PCR test done and let us know. Not doing so may put you, your family and friends at risk.

You can book a PCR test online or by phoning 119. There are NHS PCR testing centres all over the UK. We have one in Rutherford Car Park on the Canterbury campus and in The Deep End at Medway.

Please do not go to an asymptomatic (symptom-free) testing centre if you have symptoms or are self-isolating.

See our guide on ‘What to do if you have Covid-19 symptoms or advised to self-isolate’.

What do I do if I’m symptom free?

Please get tested regularly. Asymptomatic (symptom-free) lateral flow testing should be carried out at least twice a week. Whilst it doesn’t completely rule out you having Covid-19, there is a good chance that positive cases will be detected and you can then take appropriate action.

Please do not go to an asymptomatic (symptom-free) testing centre if you have symptoms or are self-isolating.

You can order lateral flow home test kits online or pick them up from the Sibson Building on the Canterbury campus and The Deep End on the Medway campus.

A negative test result is not a guarantee that you do not have Covid-19.

You still to need to follow the NHS guidance on Hands, Face, Space, Test and abide by the Government restrictions on social gatherings – only 6 people or two households indoors and up to 30 people outdoors. Stick to the 2 metre rule whenever you can!

How can I get vaccinated?

The UK vaccination programme is now available free of charge to everyone over 18 years of age and current programmes have already shown that vaccination prevents hospitalisation and saves lives.

You can find out more about walk-in vaccination centres via the local media in your area, or use the NHS booking service online or by phoning 119.

For those of you travelling from term-time to vacation addresses, you do not need to have both vaccination appointments in the same place. You are free to book each one, or attend walk-ins, in different locations.

More information about the UK Covid-19 vaccination programme is available online and the NHS student vaccination FAQs are also now available, including more detailed information for international students.

What if I’ve been vaccinated?

You need to have had two Covid-19 vaccine doses to provide the recommended amount of protection against new variant Covid-19.

This protection starts approximately three weeks following your second dose.

Even when you have had both doses, you should still test regularly, follow the NHS guidance on Hands, Face, Space, Test and abide by the Government restrictions on social gatherings – only 6 people or two households indoors and up to 30 people outdoors.