March 13, 2020 Coronavirus Update
Published: Friday March 13, 2020
Dear EC Community,
The spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to evolve quickly in the US and abroad, with new information and cases confirmed daily. The safety and security of our students and employees is paramount, and to that end, I would like to share the following information.
Elmira College officials are in continual contact with local health and emergency officials and have been keeping abreast of the latest information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the World Health Organization and other state and federal agencies. The Clarke Health Center is in regular communication with the Chemung County Health Department and continues to promote state health guidelines for self-quarantine and good hygiene across campus.
At this point, there are no indications of 'community spread' in our region, however, we are taking preparatory steps to help stem the spread of the virus and to safeguard the health of our students, employees, and community, while ensuring our students can continue their educational pursuits.
Beginning Monday, March 16, and extending through the end of Term II (April 11, 2020):
All classes will move to an online format beginning 3/16/20. This means that there will be NO face-to-face instruction via lectures, seminars or any other similar classroom setting until further notice. Students should check their email for specific information from their professors. Students who are currently engaged in clinical, internship, or student teaching placements should check with the head of their academic program. Details for Term III, currently scheduled to begin April 20, will follow at a later date.
On March 12, NCAA President Mark Emmert and the Board of Governors canceled the Division I men's and women's 2020 basketball tournaments, as well as all remaining winter and spring NCAA championships. Elmira's primary conference, the Empire 8 Conference, also released a statement regarding the cancellation of E8 regular season and conference tournament competition. To that end, all athletic competitions are cancelled for the remainder of the year, effective March 13, 2020.
On-campus events are being assessed on a case-by-case basis. Some events may be cancelled or postponed to a later date. Please check the elmira.edu website and your email for updates on a regular basis.
The March 14 Accepted Student event has been postponed; registered students and families will be contacted with additional information. The College is suspending the option for overnight visits until further notice, however, the Office of Admissions will continue to conduct tours of campus for small groups of visitors.
While classes will be completely online, residential students MAY CHOOSE one of two options: 1) Students may choose to leave the residence halls and return home for the remainder of Term II, or 2) Students may choose to remain at EC in the residence halls. We recognize that each student's situation is different, and some students (including international students and those who do not have reliable internet connectivity at home) may prefer to stay on campus. Further communication to on-campus residents about these options will be sent through the Office of Residence Life on March 13.
For students remaining on campus, food operations will be scaled to help limit the number of people gathered in any one space.
Students choosing to leave will not be able to return to campus in Term II, for safety and security reasons.
All College-sponsored travel is suspended for faculty, staff, and students, including (but not limited to) professional development and other non-essential business activities. Non-essential travel includes regional, statewide, national, and international travel. Students scheduled for Term III travel will be contacted directly with additional information.
Staff and Administrators
At this time, the College is maintaining regular business operations, and unless otherwise arranged, staff and administrators should report to work as usual. Additional employee-specific information is available on our web page dedicated to the coronavirus information.
We understand that these decisions represent a disruption to normal routines, schedules and activities. However, we believe these temporary, proactive measures will aid in stemming the spread of the virus and help maintain the safety of our campus and our community.
We encourage everyone to exercise caution and self-monitoring as it relates to personal travel, family circumstances, and health. The situation is ever-evolving and we are working diligently to keep our community informed. Updates will be communicated via email and posted to our web page dedicated to the coronavirus information.
Charles W. Lindsay