Dear Students, Faculty, and Staff:
The University continues to closely monitor the COVID-19 outbreak and its implications for the University. We would encourage everyone to remain vigilant, following the CDC guidelines to reduce the transmission of the disease including proper personal hygiene. The CDC website provides the most reliable and up-to-date information and is updated daily by 4:00pm.
The University’s Executive Committee has established a Preparedness and Response Sub-Committee to address the COVID-19 situation. This committee has been tasked with:
- Monitoring the situation, including but not limited to:
- CDC and State Health Department recommendations
- Monitoring illness and absenteeism on campus
- Possible virus clusters in our local area
- Developing and implementing response plans for possible emergency situations.
- Effectively communicating with the University community as well as local, state and regulatory agency officials.
Based on the Sub-Committee’s evaluation of the current situation and taking into consideration recent local, state, federal and regulatory agency recommendations, we are implementing the following temporary policies and procedures to reduce the risk of transmission of the disease on campus and keep our university community safe:
- All PsyD classes will transition to online instruction beginning on Monday, March 16 through April 13 (Easter Monday). At this time, we plan to return to regular on-campus classes beginning April 14. This plan will be monitored based on how the situation develops. Dr. Hollman, Academic Dean of the IPS, will address specific program related logistics in a separate email.
- Library and campus hours will remain the same. We will monitor usage of the Library to determine if hours need to be adjusted based on use.
- We are instituting liberal leave to work from home for staff with health concerns, illness, school aged children or those that are caring for family members. Please reach out directly to your supervisor for guidance.
- All University sponsored travel will be suspended from March 16 through April 13. If you have planned business travel during this time, please contact your supervisor to make alternate plans.
- Large events on campus are postponed from March 16 through April 13. This includes the events with Dr. Enright on campus and the Newman Lecture at CUA. These events will be rescheduled based on speaker availability.
- We strongly advise all students, faculty and staff to reconsider non-essential personal travel. Documented cases of COVID-19 are growing rapidly both domestically and internationally. You may face a higher risk of infection, significant delays returning, and/or the requirement to self quarantine upon your return, all of which could significantly impact your professional and personal obligations at great individual expense. All campus community members should be aware that if you travel, you may be required to self quarantine for 14 days depending on where you’re traveling to and from, even if you do not exhibit symptoms.
- If a student, faculty or staff member arrives on campus exhibiting signs of illness, they will be isolated and asked to leave campus immediately.
- Graduation events are still planned. We will continue to evaluate the situation before making a final decision. We encourage all students to use good discretion when making travel plans for the events (purchase refundable airline tickets and purchase travel insurance).
Please be aware of the steps we have taken on campus to help keep our community safe:
- DMU’s cleaning contractor is currently cleaning and disinfecting surfaces daily with a cleaning agent confirmed to kill COVID-19.
- The cleaning contractor has the ability to “deep clean” the campus if necessary and is on-call to provide this service.
- Personal hygiene items are available throughout the campus.
It is our hope that the measures being implemented both on campus and within local communities will limit the impact of the virus. We will continue to closely monitor the situation and communicate with the University community as needed. If you have questions or concerns I encourage you to communicate with your advisor or supervisor so that they can address any concerns you may have.
Finally, I invite everyone to join me in prayer each day for all those suffering and impacted by this cruel virus throughout the world. May our merciful Lord come to our aid during this trial and remind us that neither moral nor physical evil have the last word in His eternal plan. Please be assured of my prayers for you and your loved ones as we navigate this situation together.
Fr. Charles Sikorsky, LC, JD, JCL
Divine Mercy University