Spring 2020 Communications
As the spring semester comes to a close, I know many of you are thinking first about a successful finish to this term, but also are wondering about fall.
Our successful completion of the 2020 spring semester is an exceptional accomplishment. Each of you deserves recognition for your persistence and flexibility in the face of unprecedented challenges.
This is a special message from Commissioner of Higher Education Clay Christian, recognizing the accomplishments of our graduates and plans for ensuring all of the campuses in the Montana University System (MUS) are ready for the fall 2020 semester to ensure the health and safety of our students and university community.
As you may have read, both Gov. Steve Bullock and Commissioner Clay Christian have issued instructions on when we can all begin to return to work on campus within the next several weeks.
I write today to let you know that we have made the difficult decision to notify 63 of our colleagues that they will be temporarily furloughed until Aug. 1.
Over the past few weeks, I’ve been frequently asked the same question: “How long do you think the impacts of this situation will last?” The answer, as experts around the globe tell us, is difficult to predict.
We are just five weeks away from the start of UMSummer 2020, and I know many of you have been eager to know how UM will adapt our signature summer offerings to our current circumstances.
President Bodnar provides an update on happenings at UM and shares the extensive resources available to UM students as we complete this semester and look toward summer and the fall.
I write to provide an update on further changes we are implementing in response to coronavirus.
Today, we share the announcement from the Office of the Commissioner of Higher Education that there will not be a traditional spring Commencement at the University of Montana May 9 in order to help slow the spread of COVID-19.
All of us at the University of Montana are working incredibly hard to slow the spread of COVID-19. In doing so, we have made tough decisions to ensure the health and safety of our UM family.
Thursday, the Faculty Senate discussed alternate grading options for spring semester.
Gov. Bullock issued a directive to state-at-home on March 26. In light of the directive, the University of Montana is moving to Research Level 2.
Gov. Steve Bullock today issued a stay at home directive for all Montanans that will take effect at 12:01 a.m. Saturday, March 28.
We began remote instruction this week holding our breaths, hoping that the transition would be smooth. I have been hearing from students and faculty that, in general, the move to remote instruction has gone amazingly well — people are adapting creatively and being very understanding.
Thank you all for the incredible job you have been doing in not only supervising and managing your staff over the past few weeks, but also in supporting them, offering them guidance and providing them with outstanding leadership during a challenging time.
The purpose of this message is to share an update on academic affairs policy revisions, a reminder to use Starfish to help students, acknowledge faculty concerns, and ask you to take care of yourselves and each other.
As we prepare to embark on this “new normal” the remainder of spring semester, I really appreciate all the time and effort you are putting into adapting to our new circumstances.
Curry Health Services puts the health and safety of our students, campus community and dedicated employees above all else. With that in mind, I want to share some updates about how we plan to continue providing care moving forward.
We strongly encourage students in the residence halls to make plans to move out as soon as possible.
The Commissioner of Higher Education has authorized us to provide prorated refunds, to the extent possible, for room and board to those students who have departed the residence halls and/or canceled meal plans based on recent guidance from the Montana University System regarding the COVID-19 situation.
ASUM President Abbigail Belcher provides an update for UM students. This newsletter also contains extensive information about student services and resources as spring break concludes and remote instruction begins.
As we all continue to face the unprecedented challenges COVID-19 is causing in our lives and on our campus, new questions arise every day that we are working together to address. Your Faculty Senate and UFA leaders are effective advocates for you and have been relaying questions and concerns to me on a regular basis.
I want to share a few key points with you as you plan for the remainder of the semester.
Out of an abundance of caution, we have decided that we will continue with remote delivery of classes for the entirety of the semester. At this time, there is no intent to return to face-to-face instruction in spring 2020.
I very much appreciate the flexibility and creativity you are all bringing to these challenging times. The purpose of this message is to reinforce some of the most critical points for faculty in President Bodnar’s communication of yesterday afternoon.
As communities across the country continue to deal with COVID-19, I write to provide an update on the additional steps we are taking as a University to prevent further spread of the virus and to protect the health and safety of our community.
As we continue to deal with the evolving COVID-19 outbreak, we remain focused on preventing the further spread of the virus and protecting the health and safety of our community.
We would like to share the message below sent from the Montana University System leadership late last night on the steps we're taking to enable remote work to the greatest extent possible and prevent further spread of COVID-19.
Last night, we all learned that Commissioner Christian has tested presumptive positive for COVID-19. I know this announcement raises many questions for you regarding those UM employees who attended the BoR meeting in Dillon and any subsequent interactions with those individuals.
You may have seen MUS Commissioner Clayton Christian’s announcement this evening that he has tested presumptive positive for COVID-19.
I want to share with you the steps we are taking here at the University of Montana to deal with these COVID-19 challenges as proactively and thoughtfully as we can.
First, thank you all for the incredible job you do every day on campus. We simply could not function without each of your contributions every day.
This message provides more detail, especially for instructors, and addresses questions that have come in from faculty, students and staff.
While the University of Montana will offer its classes remotely beginning March 23, campus will be open during spring break and when you return from break.
The Commissioner’s Office, working with Gov. Bullock, has just announced that all MUS campuses, effective March 23, will transition to remote delivery.
In light of the rapidly evolving challenge presented by the COVID-19 outbreak, I am directing all MUS campuses to implement the following decisions as soon as possible:
This year, as we prepare for spring break, we need to be aware and prepare for coronavirus disease (COVID-19) and the potential impact this outbreak might have on your travel plans.
As part of the University’s contingency plans for dealing with COVID-19, UM Vice President of Research and Creative Research Scott Whittenburg asks all members of the UM research/creative community to consider the following information and measures.
We have provided you with a great deal of COVID-19 information because we want the UM community to be knowledgeable, prepared and informed to help prevent the spread of the virus. Equally important, we also need your help to halt the spread of discrimination and hatred that threaten to emerge in response to the virus.
Although we do not know if UM will need to suspend face-to-face teaching, it is important that every person teaching a course have plans for this possibility, and takes reasonable steps to prepare.
UM is following guidance from the Missoula City-County Health Department and the CDC on preventing the spread of COVID-19.
As news about COVID-19 intensifies, you likely have questions about what steps UM is taking to respond and protect our students, faculty and staff.
As cases of coronavirus continue to rise, UM is focused on prevention and response and the potential for coronavirus on our campuses in communities here in Montana.
UM is working alongside the Office of the Commissioner of Higher Education to develop appropriate and effective contingency plans for campuses across the Montana University System.
For the health and safety of students, faculty and staff, the Montana University System has prohibited all MUS-sponsored or affiliated travel to China until further notice.
World health officials are working to contain the novel coronavirus outbreak that began in Wuhan, China.