3/13/2020 11:57 AM
TO: Parents of Fayette Students
SUBJECT: President’s Communication – Message to Families of Fayette Students
Dear Parents and Families,
As communities across the nation are challenged with COVID-19, it is the priority of UIU to ensure the wellbeing of our students. We are grateful that there are no confirmed cases at Fayette Campus nor in our Fayette community. University leadership and emergency operations personnel continue to communicate with and receive guidance from public health officials with regard to COVID-19. While we have been told that the risk level remains low, we are closely monitoring the spread and planning diligently.
The purpose of this email is to communicate with you Upper Iowa University’s actions for preparedness related to COVID-19 (Coronavirus). The action steps below are the strategies we believe are the best to mitigate the risk of COVID-19 to students, employees and our communities. Your student received this same information in a March 12, 2020 email communication.
Fayette Campus Session 4 Face-to-Face Courses: These have been delayed by one week with the new start date of March 23, 2020, with a possibility that the remainder of Session 4 may need to be shifted entirely to online learning. A decision to make the official determination to online learning will be made on March 19, 2020; this determination will be based on continued conversations with local public health agencies. Those who are enrolled in online courses will begin your online course on the original start date of March 16, 2020.
Should a transition from face-to-face to online courses be necessary, Upper Iowa University has a long history beginning in 1999 of delivery high-quality online programming. If your student has not experienced online learning, we will work with them to provide them with the resources and confidence they need to be successful in that transition.
Housing and Food Services:
- Housing: Will remain open beginning March 15. Out of an abundance of caution, Fayette students who are able, are asked to please stay away from Fayette Campus for an additional week. In some cases we understand that is not possible. If you are staying on campus during March 15-21, you are required to notify Student Life that you are on campus or to make arrangements to return to campus: 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m., (563) 425-5215; 8:00 p.m. – 3:00 a.m., (563) 425-5372.
- Food services will also be available; however, Aramark will be proactively taking precautionary steps in the Servery and Café to protect their staff and customers.
Athletics: At this time, the Northern Sun Intercollegiate Conference has indicated the cancelation of all spring sports through March 31 and take additional measures. More information will be sent to student-athletes regarding details of how this will impact the spring sports season.
Study Abroad: At this point, UIU will be suspending all international travel until further notice. Additional communication will occur with those who may be affected by this suspension in regards to upcoming planned travel.
Events: We are reviewing internal and external events scheduled for the upcoming months. At this point, the decision has been made to cancel the Honors and Awards Banquet scheduled for April 4 at Fayette Campus. A decision has not been made regarding our 2020 Commencement. A comprehensive list of external and internal events is currently being reviewed and announcements will be forthcoming.
Cleaning and Preparation: We have been in regular contact with Iowa Department of Public Health officials over the last two weeks. We have mobilized a planning group that will guide implementation of non-pharmaceutical interventions (such as cleaning protocols) on campus and develop contingency plans to manage University operations in the event of an outbreak in our community.
Travel: We encourage you to be informed prior to any travel plans you may have. The CDC offers up-to-date travel information on their website https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html.
We are communicating any new guidance we receive through continuous updates to the following website: https://uiu.edu/coronavirus/. Students are being reminded to follow good public health practices to minimize the spread of illness. We have also alerted students and others to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommendation that any student experiencing symptoms of acute respiratory illness (e.g., fever, trouble breathing, consistent coughing) should refrain from going to class and limit their contact with others until they are free of fever (100.4° F or greater using an oral thermometer), signs of a fever, and any other symptoms for at least 24 hours, without the use of fever-reducing or other symptom-altering medicines (e.g., cough suppressants). Any student experiencing symptoms of this nature is encouraged to call their appropriate medical care provider prior to a visit to avoid unnecessarily exposing others.
We are actively planning for any potential impact to our operations in collaboration with our local and state public health officials. We are communicating any new guidance we receive through continuous updates of the website linked above and directly to students and employees. We ask for your help in reinforcing with your student the healthy practices intended to reduce the risk of transmission of this (or any other viral illness). We all have a responsibility to our community to take appropriate precautions in the face of this public health challenge.
Thank you for your patience and understanding during this rapidly changing situation. Should you have additional questions, please contact Student Life (563) 425-5212.
William R. Duffy II, Ed.D., Ed.S.
Upper Iowa University