Information about the winter semester 2022/23

Dear Sir or Madam,
Dear Colleagues,
Dear Students,

The end of the lecture period of the summer semester 2022 is upon us, and we are very happy to have been able to conclude it in person. Over the past few months, you have all contributed to ensuring that our shared academic life at the WWU has been a success and will continue that way. What was especially remarkable was everyone's unflagging willingness to wear a mask as an effective method to prevent, or at least reduce, the likelihood of infection. For this, we wish to express our heartfelt thanks. In the following, we want to share some information about our current plans for the coming weeks and the upcoming winter semester 2022/23.

Along with media reports on the coronavirus pandemic, we have received a steady drumbeat of news in recent weeks on the escalating energy crisis and, in particular, a possible gas shortage this winter. These reports and the palpable effects this is already having on individual situations have given many of us cause for concern. The energy crisis poses a major challenge to the University of Münster, which - aside from the financial consequences - could see its research, teaching, examination and administrative operations impacted. Consequently, we have set up a crisis management team to address both issues, assess their potential impacts and plan pre-emptive steps.

We are currently developing a catalogue of measures so that we can adequately respond at any time to the challenges the winter semester may bring. If necessary, we will implement suitable measures in a timely fashion. Today we can already inform you of two measures which are soon to take effect. In rooms where ventilation units are installed, we will return to air recirculation operation via centralised controls. The proportion of fresh air will be adjusted as needed. Secondly, the flow temperatures of the heating units will be reduced. During this warmer time of year, you probably will not notice any direct impact from these measures. We will be able to provide you with further information at the end of the summer.

For the upcoming winter semester, we plan to continue the mode of operation of the summer semester. Concretely, this means that research, teaching, examination and administrative activities at the University of Münster will commence in person in the winter semester. Whether and under what conditions we will be able to maintain in-person operations during the winter semester is impossible to predict at the present time and largely depends on how the pandemic and energy crisis develop.
As a major energy consumer, our planned energy-saving measures, including the two mentioned above, aim to reduce our energy needs and help us meet our social responsibilities. We are sure that you, too, have already started changing your energy consumption habits in both small and large ways. We ask you to identify where energy-saving potentials exist in your individual working contexts and reduce your energy consumption whenever possible. Thank you very much for your support.

We wish you the very best for the upcoming examination phase and a relaxing lecture-free period.
Sincerely yours,

Prof. Dr Johannes Wessels, Rector
Matthias Schwarte, Head of Administration