University updates for the coming weeks
October 22, 2020
This message was sent to students at the University of Nevada, Reno.
Dear Wolf Pack Family,
Nevada’s public health crisis affects us all individually, on a deeply personal level. Campus life, whether it is experienced remotely or in person, is an essential part of who we all are and our personal growth. The life of our campus reminds us to support our friends and colleagues, to be more understanding of individual challenges, and to find common bonds during difficult times. This is a time for all of us to remember that understanding can be our greatest endeavor, and by acknowledging that people are hurting right now, we can all come together for the greater good.
The past two weeks have seen the University make major decisions that impact you, our students, in significant ways. In the short time I’ve been on campus, you’ve shown an incredible generosity of spirit. With so many major decisions of late, I want to reassure you that the University is also working to find safe, creative and meaningful ways to keep the life of the campus connected with all of you.
On Tuesday, Shannon Ellis, Vice President of Student Services, joined me for an Instagram Live conversation with Dominique Hall, ASUN President, to address some of the questions you have. I will also be joining Dr. Steve Maples, our University Director of Admissions tonight at 5 p.m. for a Facebook LIVE to talk more about these efforts and to share my vision for the future. Since this pandemic had precluded me from meeting many of you face-to-face, these live events are an opportunity for me to speak directly with you in a virtual format.
In addition to the virtual events, I would like to clarify and share additional information about the coming days and weeks as we move toward Fall Break (traditionally called Thanksgiving), Winter Break and start making preparations for Wintermester and our Spring 2021 semester.
New information added to Protect the Pack Dashboard
The University has added additional reporting graphs to the Protect the Pack Dashboard that is updated weekly on Monday afternoons. Be sure to check out the latest information. Also, in case you weren’t aware, the University’s SafePack app has a new feature. After clicking into SafePack’s settings, you can access all of the latest testing data and information from the University’s COVID-19 Dashboard. We will continue to share information through official channels, including the University’s coronavirus page.
The University will not be closed
Although instruction will delivered remotely for the remainder of the semester, beginning Nov. 30 through Jan. 22 (Spring 2021 semester will now begin, Jan. 25), the campus will remain open and tutoring, advising and other academic and support services will still be available to all students. University facilities, including the Mathewson-IGT Knowledge Center, the Joe Crowley Student Union, Fitzgerald Student Services, and the William N. Pennington Student Achievement Center will remain open, though perhaps with reduced hours.
Student workers should consult with their supervisors regarding work assignments through the end of the semester. Depending on the job, the job may end and pay would stop, or work could be assigned on-campus or remotely.
Students living in the residence halls will continue to receive communication from Residential Life, Housing and Food Services regarding plans and options for the remainder of the semester, Wintermester and Spring 2021.
Spring 2021 Semester
As a reminder, in a message to the University on Sept. 14, 2020, the University's Executive Vice President and Provost Kevin Carman stated that for the Spring 2021 semester, the University will return and continue to offer courses through the modalities that the University is currently using for the Fall 2020 semester. Specifically, courses with enrollment capacities of 35 or greater will be taught online, while courses with enrollment capacities of 34 or less will predominantly be taught using the alternative-HyFlex modality.
The University is working toward the possibility of reopening the E. L. Wiegand Fitness Center in phases when the Spring 2021 semester starts on Jan. 25. The reopening will be dependent on students making positive decisions on and off our campus, as well as the latest public health data.
Study Abroad Program suspended
Due to the current severity and unpredictability of the COVID-19 pandemic, the University will continue to suspend international travel for all students, faculty and staff for the foreseeable future. This unfortunately means that University students will not be allowed to participate in study abroad programs, including USAC, through the Spring 2021 semester. While conditions may improve, the pandemic is a very fluid and erratic situation. For this reason, University leadership decided to cancel study abroad programs early enough to allow students to make alternative plans.
One alternative that students may consider is the USAC Global Perspective program. There are international courses taught online and virtual internships that provide opportunities to gain valuable career experience from professionals located throughout the globe. The University is a proponent of this program and encourages students to explore what it has to offer.
Please continue to be optimistic and hopeful for the future. We are asking a lot of each other at the moment. Your daily actions are helping shepherd us forward. Thank you for all that you are doing.