(This campus message went out from President Joseph I. Castro to the campus community at 12:52 p.m. March 12, 2020.)
Dear Campus Community,
As our University has communicated over the past few weeks, we have been engaged in ongoing planning since the emergence of novel coronavirus, or COVID-19. While there are currently no cases of COVID-19 related to our campus, we are temporarily suspending in-person, on-campus classes, effective Monday, March 16, in order to transition to virtual instruction next week. This includes classes offered at our Visalia campus.
This decision was made with an abundance of caution and care for our campus community and after deliberation with the CSU Chancellor’s Office, the Academic Senate, the Joint Labor Council, local K-12 and community college leaders and local public health officials, while keeping your well-being and student success in mind.
I encourage you to read the entirety of this message to ensure you have the information needed to anticipate how your schedule may or may not change, whether you are a student, faculty or staff.
To allow our faculty to make final preparations for virtual delivery of instruction, face-to-face classes are canceled from Monday, March 16, through Thursday, March 19. The campus will remain open (see related information below). Virtual instruction will begin on Friday, March 20.
Please note that online classes that have been ongoing since the beginning of the spring semester will continue as scheduled.
Some courses will continue to meet in person between March 16-19 and beyond if alternative instruction is not appropriate, such as laboratory, performing arts and kinesiology courses, and campus farm activities. (Students are to check with their instructors regarding these types of courses.) Accommodations associated with social distancing will be implemented in these courses.
We currently anticipate the conclusion of alternative delivery of instruction and resumption of regular operations on Monday, April 27; however, that may be subject to change depending upon the status of the situation.
Guidance for Students:
- Students should communicate directly with their professors or department chairs if they have specific questions or concerns related to projects, presentations, exams, coursework, etc.
- With the exception of fully online courses, all deliverables (homework/in-class assignments) previously due during the closure (March 16-19) will be rescheduled by your professors to be due after March 19. We request that students check in with their professors for specific guidance.
- Online assignments due between March 16-19 that are part of in-person classes will also be suspended and may be rescheduled.
- Despite these temporary changes, I strongly encourage students to continue to be engaged in their academic success by continuing to study, review course materials and prepare assignments with the end goal of being prepared to resume full academic activity on Friday, March 20.
- Student employees will be allowed to work on campus during this time period and should contact their supervisors for any specific questions.
- Consistent with the Mountain West Conference’s announcement this morning, Fresno State athletics will suspend all competitions indefinitely.
- The Student Cupboard will remain open to continue providing food and essential hygiene items for students in need.
- For students who have questions that are not academic related, a dedicated email address has been established in the Office of the Dean of Students at firstname.lastname@example.org. (We ask that only enrolled students use this resource.)
- Club sports and intramural events have been suspended through April 27.
Guidance for Faculty:
We encourage faculty to plan for the transition and use any resources they need and reach out to the Center for Faculty Excellence for assistance. In addition, the CFE will send a communication today to faculty providing additional resources. Students’ academic standing will not be affected due to this cancellation, and no additional class days will be added.
Guidance for Staff:
Campus will remain open for non-academic business as usual. Staff and MPP employees should report to work during this period. If you become ill with flu-like symptoms or are unable to come to work, please advise your supervisor as usual.
As a reminder to everyone, the campus is not closing. Campus offices and buildings will remain open, including student housing, dining services and the Student Health and Counseling Center. Students who need computers or WiFi will find appropriate resources on campus in the Madden Library, the DISCOVERe Center and computer labs.
Our Child Care Centers (Programs for Children) for students, faculty and staff will remain open.
We understand that many community members are concerned. If you would like to talk with someone, support is available:
- Students can contact the Student Health and Counseling Center for a range of services.
- For faculty and staff, the Employee Assistance Program is available at 800.367.7474.
We know there will be additional questions, and we will continue sending regular updates to keep you informed. Please check your email and the University’s COVID-19 website regularly.
Please remember that our main focus is the health and safety of our campus community, and that our mission remains empowering every student for success. Now more than ever, our students will need our support during this time.
President Joseph I. Castro