I would like to again thank everyone for your flexibility, innovation, and willingness to help our community move forward as we have been dealing with the effects of COVID-19. Since March, life as we know it has been turned upside down. Each member of our campus community has been affected in some capacity by the effects of the virus, and each of you have displayed a strong sense of dedication to finishing the spring semester strong.
Recently, Governor Beshear proposed a plan to begin reopening the state beginning in phases on May 11.
With this direction from our Governor, Thomas More University intends to resume in-person classes and residential activities in the upcoming fall semester. I know we are eager to return to our traditional, personalized academic experience that, as a University, we deeply value and pride ourselves in. We are very hopeful of this timeframe, and our top priority continues to be the health and safety of our campus community.
Our intent is to begin the semester as scheduled on August 17. Along with the return of in-person classes on this date, we are currently focused on a plan for a reopening of the residence and dining halls, athletic facilities, areas of worship, and on-campus student resources.
Given the uncertainty that still remains due to the COVID-19 crisis, we will continue to monitor CDC guidelines and actions proposed by our state and federal governments to ensure we are providing a safe and healthy environment for all students, faculty, and staff upon our arrival back to campus. We will be agile as we plan for what the reopening of our doors will look like.
I understand that though many of us are eager about the start of the semester and returning to campus, we may also feel a little uneasy as we venture back into public areas. Since moving to a remote learning and work format, our facilities staff has remained on campus to keep our buildings sanitized and safe. When we do return to campus, “normal” will look a little different given the precautions that we will be taking to provide a secure environment. These actions and details will be shared with the campus community closer to the start of the semester.
Again, thank you for your flexibility and commitment to Thomas More during these unprecedented times. Though none of us could have expected that this is how we would be completing the 2019-2020 academic year, I am certain that we will be stronger as an institution and community because of this experience. We haven’t physically been on campus, but the spirit of the University is alive and well.
I look forward to welcoming our community back to campus and classrooms this upcoming fall.