March 13 Message to CSB/SJU Community

Dear CSB/SJU Faculty, Staff, Students and Parents:

What a challenging week it has been. As we face a global health pandemic, we are reminded of the fragility of our world; of the need to balance thoughtful decision-making with an ever-evolving situation; of the need to proceed factually while never losing sight of the humanity of those impacted. Our goals are first and foremost to keep our students, faculty, and staff safe, including those most vulnerable in this situation, while supporting course completion and graduation.

We are keenly aware of the importance and power of dwelling in community, and our Benedictine values call us to not only do what we believe is right for ourselves but for our community as a whole. In order to help reduce the risk and spread of the COVID-19 virus, and to support our community’s common good, CSB/SJU will suspend on-campus classes and all events as of 5 p.m. today, Friday, March 13. Online classes will begin Monday, March 23. IT IS ESSENTIAL THAT YOU READ THE ENTIRETY OF THIS MESSAGE IN ORDER TO HAVE FULL INFORMATION ABOUT WHAT IS NEXT.

Students

Students are asked to return home as soon as they are able. Please plan to be out of the residence halls and off campus no later than 5 p.m. Wednesday, March 18. On campus accommodations can be made on a case-by-case basis for international students and those with extenuating circumstances. While we are hopeful that we will resume regular operations on April 14, we ask students to take all belongings with you. Residential life will work with you closely to facilitate this process and students will receive additional information, instructions, and resources from Residential Life Staff today.

All students are required to complete a form to inform us of their plans. These forms will enable international students and students who need special housing consideration to indicate their needs. Students who have extenuating circumstances can apply to stay on campus and participate in their online classes from campus via these forms as well.

CSB Students, please fill out this form.

SJU Students, please fill out this form.

Faculty and Staff

We are very grateful for all you do each day to enliven our campus. Your efforts and support will remain essential during this time. We urge you to notify your supervisor if you need any accommodations and, of course, please do follow sick leave policy and remain home if you are ill.

Faculty should plan to report to campus for training and workshops during the week of March 16 to prepare for online delivery of classes. Administrative offices and service operations will continue to operate, and staff should report as usual. More information will follow.

Online Learning and Events

CSB/SJU will hold all classes online from Monday, March 23 through Monday, April 13. During that period, all on-campus events will be canceled or postponed, and all CSB/SJU-sponsored events off campus will be canceled or postponed. While we hope to resume in-person classes on April 14 (the day after Easter break), we will continue to assess the situation and will extend this period as necessary. You can expect regular updates from campus. Your CSB/SJU email account, and the COVID-19 website, will be the official means of communication regarding updates.

Conclusion

We have been endeavoring to remain calm and deliberate as we acknowledge and respond to the facts about slowing the spread of COVID-19. Thank you for your understanding and your patience during this time, as important decisions are made and communicated.

Please refer to the COVID-19 website for updates on this matter throughout the day and continue to closely monitor your email.

Mary Dana Hinton                                           Eugene McAllister
President                                                            Interim President
College of Saint Benedict                              Saint John’s University