Dear Students, Faculty and Staff,
As we finish another week of the coronavirus pandemic and get ready for Holy Week next week, I want to assure you and your loved ones that God loves you and has not forgotten about you. Life in this world is always a mystery, one which we see in the most dramatic way in the passion, death and resurrection of Christ. In the midst of mystery and suffering, I invite you to never forget that Easter Sunday always follows Good Friday. Grace and new life are always on the other side of every cross. It’s a promise from God sealed with the blood of His only Son.
I would like to thank everyone for their adherence to the new restrictions established by the Governor of Virginia to stay home and report to business only for essential business functions. This is a challenging time for everyone and the fluidity of the situation requires added effort to accomplish our responsibilities whether it is teaching, counseling, studying, attending classes or performing the important duties to keep the University functioning. We will get through this!
The executive committee met this morning to review the current situation and make decisions about temporary changes to the University’s essential functions in keeping with regulatory requirements. To that end, I would like to provide you all with the following information:
- PsyD Summer classes will be offered online. After considering the survey sent last week to PsyD students, having faculty input, and given that the Governor of Virginia has declared that no gatherings of more than 10 persons can be held at any time until June 10, I believe this is the most prudent course and will allow the entire community to plan accordingly. Should conditions and the regulatory situation change, there could be a possibility to reopen the clinic before then, but that determination cannot be made at this time. Dean Hollman will be sending an email to all PsyD students with details regarding this shift to online delivery.
- SOC May and July residencies will also be online. For similar reasons, we will not be hosting the residencies scheduled for May and July on campus. Rather, they will be done in online format. Dean Payne will have additional information for all students regarding this shift.
I would also like to take this opportunity to continue to encourage all faculty and staff to adhere to the guidelines for telework that have been previously communicated. No one should be working on campus without the approval of his or her supervisor. If you need to come to the building and you do not currently have authorization which schedules onsite work for essential functions, you will need to follow the procedures listed below (please see the document attached for complete details):
- Supervisor authorization: please request approval from your supervisor for any visit to campus. Those that are on campus for essential functions will be reviewing and sharing important mail, watering plants and caring for the building. Special requests for materials will also be considered.
- Notify Operations: Please email Helen Truppo to notify her of your plan to visit campus copying your supervisor on the email.
- Email Operations: On the day of your visit, email Helen Truppo when you arrive and when you depart. Keeping an accurate headcount of those on campus is essential in case of emergency.
- Avoid restricted areas: We have modified our Security and Cleaning services in light of this situation. Therefore, certain areas of the building, predominantly on the second floor, will be off limits. Signs have been posted on all areas that are being restricted. Please adhere to these restrictions.
- Security questions: If you have any questions or are having difficulty entering the building, please contact Helen Truppo.
- Floor Captains: Rigg Mohler and Laura Tucker have been included as ad hoc Floor Captains during this situation. Please reach out to them directly if you have any concerns while on campus. I encourage you to review the DMU Safety and Emergency Procedures Manual to ensure that you follow approved procedures during any emergency situation.
Thank you all for your hard work and positive attitude during this unexpected and trying situation. I have been remembering you and your loved ones during my daily Masses and will continue to do so. By placing our trust in God, we can persevere with consolation and hope.
Sincerely yours in Christ,
Fr. Charles Sikorsky, LC, JD, JCL
Divine Mercy University