To all lecturers, staffs and ITB students I am proud of,
It has been more than two months that we have been undergoing various forms of large scale social restrictions (PSBB), in order to minimize the spread of COVID-19 as far as possible. The social restrictions that we live in, of course, causing hard obstacles to face. Our society is also facing similar constraints. COVID-19 gives us widespread socio-economic impacts.
The Central and Regional Governments in Indonesia are now beginning to formulate steps towards a new normal that aims to reduce the negative impacts of social restrictions. However,as long as the vaccine for covid-19 has not yet been discovered and mass produced, we need to prevent the occurrence of new clusters. If this happens, the emergence of new contagion clusters will result in increasingly prolonged social restrictions, which are followed by broader socio-economic impacts.
In line with the Central and Regional Governments, ITB is formulating a Transition Period towards a new Work Culture, namely the Adaptation of New Habits. The policies that underlie the Transition Period are as follows.
We all realize that large scale social restriction (PSBB) has consequences, including declining our academic performance, both in teaching, research, and community service. Planning a Transition Period will minimize those consequences. Thus, transition period needs to be done in ways that as far as possible avoid the emergence of new covid-19 transmission clusters. Relaxation of social restrictions can be carried out on low-risk activities.
ITB'S research and community service activities that do not involve intensive social interaction can get started again on campus. Similar criteria also apply to research activities for postgraduate students. All of the activities need to remain limited to some essential aspects.
Research and community service activities, research of doctoral and master's students, which are estimated to lead to the emergence of new contagious clusters potentially, are still being conducted online.
We will continue online classes as our primary learning activities. ITB will improve the quality of online learning, such as conducting online seminars and online tutorials.
In principle, entering the Transition Period to Adaptation of New Habit era will prevent the emergence of new contagion clusters. All of the possibilities will be fulfilled if we are being careful and have thorough considerations, followed by high responsibility, commitment, and discipline from all of us.
We are trying to adapt to the current condition so we can carry out our activities as students, lecturers, staff, or institution managers. Some of us have more difficulty than others. My colleagues and I experienced boredom and running out of energy in carrying out tasks, which, under normal conditions, felt much lighter. I believe we should be able to be more empathetic both to the environment around us and to ourselves.
By going through this era of adaptation, we will rapidly realize that we are not alone. I believe we will learn to recognize ourselves and the environment around us. I am confident that we will all be able to adapt well and achieve peace, so that we can continue to contribute to the prosperity and progress of the Indonesian people.
May Allah SWT bless all of our hardworks and efforts towards the New Normal condition. For His Permit and Gift, we can increase our productivity again and minimize the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak. Amen.
Bandung, May 29, 2020
Prof. Reini Wirahadikusumah