Today's Update: Saturday, March 14

March 14, 2020

Dear Student Life Team:

I want to start today’s update by saying: Thank you. I know fully well what a stressful, uncertain and fast-paced week this has been.  Yet, as I knew we would, the Student Life team once again rose to the occasion. A few weeks ago I was told that today and tomorrow on campus would be so action-packed with people returning from Spring Break. I still can’t believe how quickly expectations – and reality – have changed.
 
As you know, today was the first official day of the 2020 move-out process. I appreciate the many who came out to assist, those who were working on a variety of things remotely and those who sent positive vibes. Things went very well today, and students and their families seemed to appreciate and abide by our instructions to stick to their scheduled move-out times, which is so important to social distancing. For those of you who don’t know, we have limited the number of people who can be in any one building at any time, so this has been quite the process to manage!
 
As I was moving around campus today checking in with our team, I realized something extraordinary: just a day and a half after the university’s announcement was made on Thursday evening, we launched our official move-out process. Under regular circumstances, this planning process would take months. That’s not to say I suggest we should always move this quickly, but it is truly amazing what we can do to support the health and safety of our campus community.
 
I want to thank those of you who were able to join us for the update session via CarmenZoom yesterday. I understand the link I sent in yesterday’s message isn’t working properly. We are working on that and will send an active link next week. As we continue to work on follow-ups from that session, I thought you all might be interested in the top categories of questions that students are asking:

  • Move-out process (changing scheduled move-out times, status of exemption request, shipping/storage options)
  • Fee refunds
  • Accessibility of buildings and services like dining, recreation and libraries
  • Commencement
  • Student employment

When I compare this to the questions that were top-of-mind for you, this tells me that, once again, you all are very aligned with the needs and interests of our students, and I appreciate that so much.
 
As we continue our move-out process next week, I expect we will continue our work on identifying how we can best support students – and staff – both in virtual and in-person ways. This is the high-tech-high-touch world we’ve always talked about; it’s just more important now than ever.
 
Thank you for being Scarlet and Great!
Melissa