November 18, 2020
As we approach Thanksgiving and our pivot to remote teaching and working following the holiday break, I want to take the opportunity to clarify the status of our campus operations moving forward.
Earlier this week, the CSCU System Office advised us that faculty who wish to teach remotely next Monday and Tuesday (Nov. 23 and 24) may do so, provided they offer advance notice to their students and department chairs. Faculty who wish to use those days to complete courses on-ground in experiential settings such as theater, studios or labs, or because their course has as an in-person presentation component, may continue to teach as scheduled.
As I communicated last month, the majority of faculty and staff – apart from essential personnel – will not be required to work on campus after Thanksgiving.
However, individual offices may stay open with limited/staggered staffing, dependent on the schedule prearranged between the department heads and deans/vice presidents of their respective divisions. For example, the Adanti Student Center will be open post-Thanksgiving through finals week for students who need study spaces and computer access.
Staff who need to visit campus outside of their schedule must obtain approval from their supervisor and then contact University Police before arrival if assistance is needed with building access.
Faculty and staff in academic affairs seeking to come to campus after Thanksgiving, and for the remainder of the winter break, should submit requests to COVID19 Winter Campus Visit at least two business days in advance of their intended visit. The form may also be found on our Reopening 2020 website and is similar to the procedure used during the summer.
Specific information for each Division will be forthcoming from your respective vice presidents.
Looking ahead to the spring semester, the current outlook is much the same as it was for the fall, with the majority of our activities potentially being remote, at least in the early part of the semester.
For now, the new semester is scheduled to begin Jan. 26, as per the academic calendar. In this scenario, faculty and staff will start returning to campus during the two weeks prior to opening to prepare for the new semester and begin offering on-ground services.
In recent days there has been promising news about the availability of vaccines. Future developments, along with the trajectory of the COVID-19 virus, will help determine a more concrete projection for the spring during the coming weeks.
Further information on our spring reopening will be provided through the CSCU System Office, in consultation with Governor Lamont and the state Department of Public Health.
I know that this has been a long and arduous journey, and I compliment all of you on your resilience and determination in helping us stay the course, for the benefit of our mission and our students. I urge everyone to continue to observe our health and safety protocols as we enter the final on-ground days of the semester. And I wish you a safe, healthy and peaceful Thanksgiving.
Executive Vice President