An update from UofL President Neeli Bendapudi regarding COVID-19 is available below. Please note that COVID-19 updates will also be posted regularly online here.
As I shared with you yesterday, my leadership team and I are committed to keeping each of you informed and protected as we deal with the novel coronavirus, COVID-19. Our people are, and always will be, our greatest asset and highest priority.
After extensive and in-depth conversations with infectious disease experts at our university, and higher education peers in the state and the nation, I have made the following decisions.
- Spring Break is extended through March 17. Classes will be delivered remotely starting March 18 through April 5.
- International travel is suspended effective immediately.
- Non-essential domestic business travel is suspended effective immediately.
- On-campus events will continue, but are under review.
- UofL’s campuses remain open and operational.
Please read below for further detail on each of these important actions.
We understand that these restrictions will cause significant inconvenience for many of you. Please know that we do not make these restrictions and recommendations lightly. I am convinced that these measures are essential to preserve the health and well-being of all members of our University community and all citizens of the Commonwealth.
We also encourage you to visit our dedicated Coronavirus webpage for more information about the virus and our response. If you have a specific question about the virus, please direct it to firstname.lastname@example.org.
The best thing you can do is follow the steps listed here to help prevent further spread of the coronavirus.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
- If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.
We will continue to provide frequent updates on university activities and decisions in the days and weeks ahead. In the meantime, we ask that every member of our community stay true to our Cardinal Principles as we all do our part to stay ahead of this evolving situation. We are a family and we will get through this period of global uncertainty together.
DETAILS OF UNIVERSITY OF LOUISVILLE PREVENTATIVE ACTIONS
Spring Break is extended through March 17. Classes will be delivered remotely starting March 18 through April 5.
- There will be no classes on March 16 and 17.
- All classes will be offered remotely via online or other alternative learning options beginning Wednesday, March 18, through at least April 5. Classes already offered online will continue as originally scheduled. Students should anticipate direct correspondence from individual course instructors prior to March 18.
- Health Sciences students who are involved in clinical programs will receive further guidance from their academic deans. Information about labs, testing and other items will also be provided.
- Campus Housing will remain open. Students who are able to stay away from campus until April 5 are encouraged to do so.
- Training is available for all faculty on transitioning their classes to alternative or online instruction beginning March 12. Training will be offered in-person and online through March 17. Information on that training will be emailed to all faculty today.
International travel is suspended effective immediately
- Effective immediately, all incoming and outgoing international university-related travel is suspended through April 30, 2020. Similarly, no future international trips are permitted to be booked through June 30, 2020.
- This means that all previously scheduled study abroad trips, conferences, trainings, speaking engagements or other university-sponsored activities and programs that require travel to or from another country during the months of March and April are now cancelled. Contact your vice president, dean or unit administrator for more details.
- Students, faculty and staff already studying abroad may remain unless the country is declared a Level 3 country by the CDC. Students also have the choice to return earlier, but this should be coordinated through the International Center.
- In addition, we strongly discourage personal travel to international destinations.
- All students, staff and faculty who are already traveling internationally this week or are planning to take a personal trip outside of the country, are required to complete the Returning Traveler’s Report on our website prior to returning to campus. Upon review of the travel information submitted, you will receive confirmation of permission and a timeline for your return to campus.
- Please know that if you are returning from a Level 3 country, a Level 2 country with a COVID indication, or from France, Germany, Japan or Spain, you are required to self-isolate away from campus for 14 days upon your return to the country.
Non-essential domestic business travel is suspended effective immediately
- Also prohibited is any non-essential, incoming and outgoing travel within the United States during the months of March and April.
- An employee with an essential domestic travel request in March or April may request approval through their vice president, dean or unit administrator. These exceptions will be rare.
- Contact your vice president, dean or unit administrator if you have questions about the types of essential vs. non-essential activities that apply to your program, department or unit.
On-campus events will continue, but are under review
- At this time, we are not restricting large on-campus events. However, we continue to monitor the situation to determine if such a prohibition will be necessary in the near future.
- We are strongly discouraging scheduling any non-essential events through at least April 30. If you have questions about how essential an event is for your program, department or unit, you should reach out to your respective supervisors.
UofL’s campuses remain open and operational
- Faculty and staff are expected to follow their normal work schedules during this time, but continue to follow social distancing and preventative hygiene practices.
- Campus Housing will remain open, but students who are able to stay away from campus until April 5 are encouraged to do so. Student housing, food services, libraries, the food pantry and other campus and student services will be open. Check campus websites for further information on hours of operation.
- Research activities will continue at this time. Anyone involved in research will receive a separate communication from EVPRI Kevin Gardner in the coming days with specific guidance.
- Supervisors should begin making plans in preparation for a potential determination that remote work is necessary. We have no reason to believe that this step will be necessary in the short-term, but in an abundance of caution we ask our team leaders to begin preparations.