Update: UArts COVID-19 Response

sent to all faculty and staff March 10, 2020

Dear Colleagues,

I am writing to provide you with an update on the University’s response to growing concerns around the spread of COVID-19.

After on-going and thoughtful consideration by President Yager, Senior Staff and the Crisis Management Team, the University is taking the following actions:

  1. Spring Break is being extended an additional week for students only.  At this time, classes are expected to resume on Monday, March 23.  The campus will remain closed to students, work-study will be suspended, and housing will be limited, on a case-by-case basis, to those with extenuating circumstances.

  2. The University will utilize the week of March 16 to develop remote and alternate modes of instruction in order to be prepared for any possible and prolonged cessation of in-person classes.  As such, all faculty and staff are expected to return to campus the week of March 16 to assist in this important work.  More information about this work will follow.
  3. At this time, we are reviewing all public programs and special events to determine which, if any, will be suspended.  Notification of these decisions will be issued later this week.

As a reminder:

  • All international travel on University business has been suspended.
  • Domestic travel by faculty on University business must be approved by the Office of the Provost.  Domestic travel by staff must be approved by the Vice President of the staff member’s division.
  • Individuals conducting personal travel to Level 3 and Level 2 countries (as designated by the CDC) must self-isolate for 14 days upon return and then receive medical clearance before being permitted to return to campus.

During the extended Spring Break, we will also be working with faculty and staff to develop new and formal protocols to help maximize the health and safety of our environment.  Behaviors such as wiping down computers, phones, cameras, etc., before and after individual use will need to become part of our expected routines.  Working together, we can identify and employ other such strategies that reflect a level of care and comfort we value as a community.

These are difficult days, with each one bringing news and updates that offer cause for concern.  The resolve of the University -- its faculty, staff and students – remains strong.  As is the University’s commitment to safeguarding its community.  We will continue to provide updates to you through the University COVID-19 webpage.

Sincerely,

Rick Longo
Vice President for Academic Operations