Today's Update: Thursday, August 13

August 13, 2020

Dear Student Life Team, Move-In started yesterday and RPAC and the Ohio Union are both open, along with a variety of dining options. We are well on our way to the return to campus. I couldn’t be more excited about how well things are going. 

I’m very grateful to the students and families who are abiding by our Move-In protocols. Everyone arriving at the two residence halls that opened yesterday, Smith-Steeb and Park-Stradley, wore face masks and kept physical distancing. Their feedback was overwhelmingly positive about the steps we are taking.  

I do have one story to tell you about: I got a very angry email message yesterday morning from someone who saw a story on ABC6 TV about Move-In, and was extremely upset that there were large crowds helping unload cars and no one was wearing a face mask. You can imagine how concerned I was to hear this, and I reached out to a few members of our team immediately to ask them to find out what was going on. As it turns out, the station ran footage from last year’s Move-In without identifying it. Now, it was a pre-dawn live shot with the reporter standing outside in the dark while the footage was from broad daylight, and we wish they had included “file footage.” I’m just grateful that the “real” experience on-site was fully masked and distanced! 

As we get further down the line, it’s becoming apparent that we have some critical need areas, and it’s going to take everyone’s help: 

  • We are still in critical need of people to help with Move-In. You’ll remember I mentioned earlier that we have more than 800 shifts to fill, and we still have more than 100 positions to fill. Even if you are currently working remotely, we need everyone possible to pitch in, including on the weekends, so please look at your schedules and identify a time you can come to campus to assist. The work is mostly outdoors and can easily be done with proper physical distancing. Sign up at go.osu.edu/moveinhelp 

  • We will be providing quarantine and isolation spaces for on-campus housing students who are exposed to COVID-19 or who test positive. We will need to staff the main desk in each of the three buildings 24/7 and need staff members to assist with this. The front desk of these residence halls will be encased in plexiglass, you’ll be provided with the appropriate personal protection equipment (PPE) and most of the engagement with the students living in the community will be over the phone. Please sign up for shifts at Lawrence Tower at the following link, Shift Sign-Up, and “request access” if prompted. 

  • We’re adding something new to how we make sure important information gets out to people. We are setting up a phone line that students and parents can call with questions about the return to campus. We will need many people to help staff that line and answer questions. If you’re interested, sign up at www.go.osu.edu/phonelinesignup  


There is a great deal going on, and it requires a great deal of effort from all of us to launch this new semester. Our Student Life team is one of the best at stepping up and making things happen. Now is one of those times. I am asking for your help, and am grateful for your willingness to support our students and their families. Thank you for being Scarlet and Great.  

Melissa.