Dear students,

I want to take a moment to thank you for your patience and flexibility after an intense week of news and activity. Our students are our highest priority and I want to assure you that many people are working very hard to ensure you can continue your academic journey the remainder of the semester.

I am sure you have many questions. While I don’t have all the answers right now, I do want to reinforce several important items.

Students need to vacate residence halls by tomorrow night, Tuesday, March 17, at 7:00 p.m. unless allowed to stay by exception. Although it is unlikely that we will have courses back to in-person for the remainder of the semester, you are not being asked to take all of your belongings at this point. Residence Life is working closely with affected students to include sending necessary items like medication and course work to students who are unable to come to campus in person, providing reimbursement for travel costs incurred as a result of needing to travel home or to an alternate location, and providing exemptions to students in hardship situations.

For those students and employees who remain on campus, I ask that you follow
CDC guidance on social distancing, which has been shown to be an effective method in slowing down the spread of COVID-19. This guidance says to keep a safe distance, 6 ft if possible, between you and other people. Currently, this guidance applies to all public gathering areas, classes and meetings with fewer than 25 people. It’s not about the number of people in attendance, it’s about ensuring there is adequate space between people to minimize possible transmission of the virus. For students remaining on campus please use discretion and remember, the most effective method in preventing the transmission of any virus is to wash your hands thoroughly and often.

I know you are anxiously awaiting news on how you will complete your spring classes. With only a very small number of exceptions, all classes will continue on-line or using alternative delivery methods such as Zoom videoconferencing, audio conferencing or other technology. This includes laboratory classes. The exceptions that I mentioned will likely only be given to classes like airframe and powerplant for which federal regulations require hands-on application of acquired skills and in which all students reside locally. You will be hearing from your instructors this week on what delivery method you will be using. This will be a significant transformation so thank you in advance for your patience and flexibility.

I understand President Johnsen will be sending some additional important guidance later this afternoon. This and all policy and guidance
as well as FAQs can be accessed at the UA coronavirus website. We will continue to update this website with the most current information.

Thank you for your swift response to these extraordinary circumstances.

— Dan White, chancellor

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The University of Alaska Fairbanks is an AA/EO employer and educational institution and prohibits illegal discrimination against any individual. Learn more about UA's notice of nondiscrimination.