STATEMENT REGARDING COVID-19 – April 09, 2021
At Canadian Campus Communities (CCC) and Centennial Place Residence our hearts go out to all of our residents and their families who will experience hardships as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. This is truly an unprecedented event. During this time, we will continue to advocate for our residents to make sure they are supported during these tumultuous times.
As Canada's premier provider of student housing services to colleges and universities, CCC offers private sector assistance in managing on and off-campus student housing. Our extensive student housing experience enables us to develop innovative student communities that meet the needs of university partners and clients, while providing the most cost-effective, luxurious student living and learning communities for student residents. CCC’s corporate office is located in Austin, Texas with its parent company, American Campus Communities.
Centennial Place Residence is Centennial College’s sole on-campus housing provider. It is classified as an apartment-style community, where we as the Landlord directly lease to incoming and returning Centennial College students. We work hand in hand with Centennial College to facilitate their administrative, financial and student policy objectives during this crisis while considering the parties’ legal covenants governing these sometimes-complex transactions and the students’ legal rights under their lease agreements. At Centennial Place Residence we offer 4, 8 and 9-month leases across multiple academic periods and we intend to honor those contracts in their entirety.
With this in mind, we have been and continue to track the rapidly evolving policy decisions that each of our local colleges and universities are making with regard to how they are delivering their educational curriculum for the academic term, and any specific policies, procedures, and protocols they are establishing for students with regard to COVID-19. If and when we become aware that the virus directly impacts any of our student residents, we will attempt to inform them of the resources and assistance that each university offers in conjunction with the local health department.
Clean - At Centennial Place Residence, we take standards for hygiene and cleanliness very seriously and are taking additional steps to ensure the health and wellbeing of our residents and staff. We have adopted relevant guidelines issued by the Ontario Ministry of Health and the World Health Organization and communicated all guidelines to our residents, which are subject to change based on local and provincial government mandates. Additionally, we are following the Ontario Ministry of Health guidelines for daily cleaning and disinfecting, which includes measures designed to address a broad spectrum of viruses, including COVID-19, hand-washing hygiene and cleaning product specifications to open-area cleaning procedures.
Health & Wellbeing
Peace of Mind – To support the health and wellbeing of our staff and residents while Centennial College implements a safe and measured re-opening of campus, Centennial Place is committed to gradually re-opening amenity spaces such as the Courtyard and Individual Study Lounges. As instructed by municipal and provincial legislations over the coming weeks and months, we will also see additional amenities reopen, the implementation of a modified guest policy, and the continuation of in-person programming. For more information on how we are working in tandem with the college to put the health and wellbeing of our community first, please read Centennial College’s COVID-19 Phases Chart.
We will continue to have policies and procedures in place such as provincial and municipal mask mandates, physical-distancing requirements, and maximum capacity limits congruent with indoor gathering sizes. We will also continue to make hand sanitizers and disinfecting wipes available in our lobbies and open areas.
Academically Oriented Environment
Succeed – At Centennial Place Residence, it is our goal to ensure our residents can continue to receive academic instruction, complete their coursework, and continue to be housed in an environment conducive to their academic success.
Achieving a desired level of social distancing and sanitization while staying connected and focused on their academic and personal success, regardless if instruction is provided in person or online, is our top priority.
Unlimited High Speed WiFi Internet
Connect – Centennial Place Residence is designed to deliver unlimited high-speed Wi-Fi Internet as part of our all-inclusive utility package. During this time when the entire country’s use of broadband is testing the limits of our national infrastructure, ensuring adequate broadband service for our residents to continue to receive academic instruction and to complete their coursework has become the top priority of our IT department. Our goal is for you to stay connected to coursework, friends and family and your favourite binge-worthy streaming shows.
Collaborate – Tap into the benefits of being part of a local university community where others can relate and school traditions are close to home.
Community Standards & Residence Life
CCC’s Residence Life Model takes a back-to-basics approach using the core components of what is tried and true about residence life and student development. Centennial Place Residence staff engage residents frequently and through a variety of platforms and support programs, such as Residence Council and in-person and online educational programming events with numerous opportunities to learn about academic success and personal growth.
Our model focuses on FIVE key areas:
- Academic Support Programs, which help students make progress toward their academic goals and help residents connect to the academic resources available on campus and through various online portals
- Health & Wellness Programs teach residents skills that will help them maintain personal wellness, including physical wellness, mental health and personal safety. Bell Let’s Talk Day, the Hi, How Are You? Project in partnership with American Campus Communities, Thrive (Mental Health Week), Holiday & Wellness Kits and Bi-Weekly Door to Door Checks are just some of the mental-health focused resources and initiatives we provide for residents in our communities
- Employability Programs connect residents both virtually and in-person with university Career Services staff and assist residents in learning skills to attain gainful employment after graduation
- Financial Literacy Programs teach residents positive financial habits for their future, and include basic budgeting, building good credit and identity theft protection
- Community Engagement Programs encourage residents to get involved in their community. These programs help create a sense of civic responsibility, enable residents to explore issues of diversity and multiculturalism, and demonstrate ways to make a difference through volunteering
Whether virtually or in-person, our organizational systems and procedures enable us to effectively use these core components to meet the following mission of our Residence Life Model:
- Create inclusive communities where students feel connected, are involved in the university community and are academically successful
- Develop and nurture partnerships with our affiliated universities that support the residents’ academic and personal goals
- Support the success of the property by creating a vibrant and desirable student community
More importantly, these programs support the success of our community and contribute to a living-learning environment intended to enable students to thrive academically and socially.
At Centennial Place Residence, we have the contractual lease obligation to house students for the entire term of the lease, while students always have the freedom to physically occupy their apartments as they choose. For example, it is not uncommon for residents to go home for the extended winter break from mid-December to mid-January, for spring break, and in many cases for the entire summer term, all while still leasing and paying rent for their college apartments. In the case of this evolving COVID-19 pandemic, we remain committed and are contractually obligated to provide housing for our residents, and student residents continue to have the option as to when they choose to physically occupy their apartments between now and the end of the current lease terms in August. We have heard from many students that they desire to stay in residence instead of going home and running the risk of potentially infecting their parents and grandparents who may be in a higher risk category.
It is for all of the reasons stated above, we are not offering lease terminations and refunds.
We will continue to incur all of the expenses and overhead associated with the continued operations of our facilities, with real estate taxes and utilities being our largest expenses, followed by payroll related to our on-site staffs who continue to provide essential services to our residents.
These are unprecedented times, and we are all facing challenges and circumstances that we have never faced before and for which we do not always have an immediate answer or solution. On a daily basis, we pledge to put the health and wellbeing of our residents and team members first. We are grateful for everyone’s patience and understanding as we continue to support each other more than ever before.
COVID-19 Frequently Asked Questions
I am attending Centennial College in the fall. What should I expect when returning to campus?
To learn more about Centennial College’s re-entry guidelines and protocols, please click HERE.
I am an international student with an approved VISA. Can I travel to Canada?
As of October 20, 2020, some designated learning institutions (DLIs) are now able to reopen to international students who aren’t currently in Canada. To be able to reopen to international students who aren’t currently in Canada, DLIs must have a COVID-19 readiness plan approved by their province or territory that:
- protects the health and safety of all students and the surrounding community
provides information and support to international students about how they can
- get the items they need for their quarantine, like food and medications
- health insurance
- remaining healthy while in Canada
- You must be studying at one of the approved DLIs listed HERE to be able to travel to Canada.
What measures are you taking in relation to COVID-19?
As part of our commitment to the health and wellbeing of our residents, employees and university communities, we are closely monitoring the Ontario Ministry of Health and World Health Organization guidance regarding COVID-19 and are communicating the Ontario Ministry of Health hygiene and prevention guidelines to our residents and employees at all of our locations. In addition, we are practicing social distancing, implementing the following actions for residents and our team members:
- Gradual re-opening of amenity spaces as mandated by provincial and municipal legislations.
- Honouring physical-distancing requirements and maximum capacity limits congruent with indoor gathering sizes.
- Preferred communication between residents and staff are phone calls and emails in an effort to limit person-to-person exposure.
- Continuing to offer virtual property tours for interested students.
- Daily cleaning and disinfecting occur in accordance with current Ontario Ministry of Health guidelines, which include everything from handwashing hygiene and cleaning product specifications to common area cleaning procedures.
- Making hand sanitizers and disinfecting wipes available in our lobbies and open areas when possible.
Are residents able to stay at your communities during this time?
Our local colleges and universities are enacting a wide array of measures in response to COVID-19, and we are closely monitoring their actions and policy changes and will work with them accordingly to meet the housing needs of our residents while also abiding by the health and safety guidelines outlined by the Ontario Ministry of Health.
We remain committed and are contractually obligated to provide housing for our residents, and student residents continue to have the option as to when they choose to physically occupy their apartments between now and the end of the current lease terms. We will continue putting the health and wellbeing of all those in our residential communities first so students can fulfill their academic mission. We want residents to be assured that they will still have a place to live within our communities that prioritizes their personal growth and academic needs.
Will you be issuing refunds if student residents are not occupying their units for extended periods of time?
At Centennial Place Residence we offer 4, 8 and 9-month leases across multiple academic periods and we intend to honor those contracts in their entirety.
Regarding concerns students have about making rent payments, this is an unprecedented situation and we are monitoring government action. We are hopeful that the Canadian government programs have, and will, provide rental assistance, including for our student residents. We will continue to advocate on their behalf through our involvement in apartment industry associations.
What should residents do if they think they have been exposed to the virus or are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms?
If residents think they have been exposed to COVID-19 and develop flu-like symptoms, we are advising that they immediately contact their healthcare provider and follow their instructions. Additionally, we recommend that students contact their college or university and refer to guidelines provided by university and local health officials. Please refer to www.health.gov.on.ca for further information.
What if my roommate gets sick? What if they are quarantined?
If you believe your roommate to be sick, have them contact their healthcare provider immediately, and continue following Ontario Ministry of Health-recommended cleanliness and social distancing guidelines. If your roommate has not contacted their healthcare provider, please let us know and we will contact local health officials to determine the appropriate protocol. The healthcare provider will work with local health departments to provide additional instructions and manage the response to any suspected cases of COVID-19.
Procedures will vary from city to city, and our staff will coordinate with local or university health officials as needed and follow their directions regarding mitigation measures or quarantine protocols. For more information on local quarantine protocols, you may contact your local or university health officials directly.
Are you reducing on-site staff and/or allowing office staff to work from home?
The health and wellbeing of our residents and staff is our top priority. Our communities previously implemented reduced work hours with some remote work options to ensure the best possible residential experience throughout the pandemic. Our Resident Assistants as well as part-time student team members continue to work staggered hours based on their availability and work schedule. All full-time management staff are back at full capacity, and we do not anticipate reducing hours moving forward.
Those looking for employment can visit our Careers website for any full- or part-time openings.
Will you have sufficient high-speed Internet to accommodate students taking online classes?
Nearly all of the universities and institutions we serve have moved to some form of online and hybrid education to deliver their academic curriculum. In all circumstances, it is our goal to ensure that our residents can continue to receive academic instruction, complete their coursework, and continue to be housed in an environment conducive to their academic success. To facilitate this, all our communities are designed to deliver unlimited high-speed Wi-Fi Internet as part of our all-inclusive utility package. During this time when the entire country’s use of broadband is testing the limits of our national infrastructure, ensuring adequate broadband service for our residents to continue to receive academic instruction and to complete their coursework has become the top priority of our IT department.
Do you anticipate any negative financial impact to your business as a result of this pandemic?
This pandemic will impact all businesses, and we will continue to monitor and navigate the situation. Currently, our primary focus is on serving the needs and protecting the health and wellbeing of our student residents, partner universities, employees, and student staff. It is our goal to ensure that our residents continue to have housing in an environment conducive to academic and personal success regardless of the curriculum delivery method.