COVID-19 Update on University Operations

COVID-19 Update on University Operations

Dear University Community:

As you are likely aware, the University continues to monitor the risks related to COVID-19 (Coronavirus). The Emergency Leadership Team (ELT) has been meeting around the clock to continue their preparations and develop recommendations based upon the most recent guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO), and other federal, state, and local agencies. The ELT launched a website to share information regarding COVID-19.

The ELT met today with executive leadership, academic deans, the student government association, and faculty to discuss and finalize plans related to the mitigation of risk surrounding COVID-19. While there are no cases of COVID-19 associated with any campus of Langston University, there is at this time one confirmed case in the state of Oklahoma. We expect that additional cases may emerge throughout the state.

In addition, and with Spring Break approaching, we anticipate that a high percentage of our University community will be traveling. Increased travel activity exponentially enhances the risk of exposure to COVID-19 and subsequent community spread. A critical measure to mitigate risk is social-distancing, or the avoidance of non-essential public assembly.

In an effort to be proactive, prevent illness, and continue university operations, the following operational measures will be enacted effective March 22, 2020.

Classroom Instruction and Course Delivery

  • All students, faculty, and staff should feel welcome on campus and are expected to return on March 22, 2020.
  • Effective March 22, 2020 through April 5, 2020: The University will suspend face-to-face instruction at all locations and transition to a hybrid delivery for all courses.
  • We are evaluating academic experiences such as laboratory, clinical, and performance classes.
  • All members of our community are encouraged to employ appropriate social-distancing and practice enhanced hygiene.
  • Additional guidance will be provided by the respective academic schools. We will reevaluate these guidelines on an ongoing basis and share updates or modifications by April 5, 2020.

Events

  • In an effort to maximize social-distancing, all social events scheduled on or after March 22, 2020 are postponed until after April 5, 2020, unless otherwise approved by the Dean of Students or Office of the President.
  • No new, non-essential events will be held on campus from Sunday, March 22, 2020 through Sunday, April 5, 2020.
  • We will continue to evaluate events and will share plans prior to April 5, 2020 regarding the duration of event restrictions.

Human Resources Guidelines

  • Information about COVID-19 reporting, employee-leave management and associated workplace issues will be available from Student and Employee Services prior to March 22, 2020.

International Travel Guidance and Restrictions

  • Langston University faculty, staff, and students may not travel to any region with a CDC Level 3 travel advisory for University business or academic purposes, including but not limited to study abroad, research or grant activity, internships, to perform academic work for credit, service, conferences or presentations, teaching or training, performances, recruiting, or athletic competitions.
  • Travel to Level 3 restricted regions for personal reasons is strongly discouraged.
  • Hosting incoming visitors from Level 3 restricted regions for personal purposes is strongly discouraged.
  • Hosting incoming visitors on campus from Level 3 restricted regions for University-related purposes (visiting lecturers, visiting scholars, researchers, etc.) requires prior approval from the Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs prior to the visitor’s arrival.

Domestic Travel Guidance and Restrictions

As of today, Langston University has not implemented any restrictions on domestic travel related to COVID-19; however, we strongly recommend that travelers avoid areas where the virus is reported to be spreading. Follow CDC travel guidance and utilize a high standard of hygiene practices throughout any travel to mitigate risk. As of now, those areas include the states of Washington, Oregon, California, and New York.

While we recognize the disruption these accommodations may create, the risk of inaction outweighs the inconvenience of these temporary measures. We will continue to monitor the situation and make adjustments as necessary. Please continue to check the University website for additional information and updates.

Thank you for your continued cooperation and support. I wish everyone a safe and healthy Spring Break.

Sincerely,

Kent J. Smith, Jr., Ph.D.
President

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