Campus update: Summer sessions, programming and events, and planning for fall

Friday, May 1, 2020

Summer update


Summer Sessions 4–5 Will Be Online Only

As previously announced, the University of Iowa will offer online-only instruction for Summer Sessions 1–3, which begin May 19, 2020. The university also has decided that Summer Session 4 (eight-week session beginning on June 15) and Session 5 (six-week II session beginning on June 29) also will be online only. Clinical and experiential activities will continue to be addressed on a program-by-program basis.

Summer Programming

After considering the health and safety of participants, faculty, and staff, the University of Iowa has made the difficult decision that it will not offer in-person summer programs for the remainder of summer 2020 (through Aug. 7, 2020). Summer programs include but are not limited to youth programs, sports camps, wildlife camps, research programs, conferences/workshops, and other programming for adults. Departments and units requesting to conduct virtual summer programs for minors must follow the guidance laid out in the university’s Minors on Campus Policy, including program registration. Additionally, programs should refer to the 2020 Online Youth Programs Manual for specific requirements regarding virtual programming.

Summer Events

All events scheduled to be held on the UI campus during the summer will be canceled through July 31, 2020.

Fall Reminder

The University of Iowa plans to resume face-to-face instruction this fall.

A Message from the President

The following is an excerpt of the president’s remarks as prepared for the Board of Regents, State of Iowa, on April 30, 2020. Find the full remarks here.

Over the last two months, the university has taken deliberate steps to protect our students, faculty, and staff as well as our surrounding community. The university will employ the same strategy of right, not fast, as we consider a gradual, purposeful, and safe resumption of daily activities on our campus.

Strong organizations do not let the urgency of the current situation distract them from delivering on their long-term goals. To that end, while we are modeling various fiscal alternatives, we are also intently exploring how to safely resume daily activities in preparation for face-to-face education on Aug. 24. To facilitate this work, we have created a structure that has allowed us to manage the current crisis while simultaneously planning for the future. These planning teams are embedded in our Critical Incident Management Team and are creating operational scenarios and guidance that will be used by the campus in order to reopen safely and deliberately. These teams are led by experts and are focused on areas such as:

  • Health and safety procedures
  • Classroom sizing and scheduling
  • IT support
  • HR policies
  • Facilities maintenance
  • Finance/budget
  • Research

For example, our Health and Safety Work Group is led by the dean of the College of Public Health, Edith Parker. This group is exploring campus guidance that will cover:

  • Procedures for social distancing in classrooms, housing, dining, et cetera;
  • Personal protective equipment (PPE) practices and requirements, including who would wear what, how much PPE we would need, and preparing needed stockpiles;
  • Testing, contact tracing, isolation, seropositivity, et cetera;
  • How we protect our most vulnerable populations; and
  • Ensuring coordination and compliance with local and state public health departments.

These are challenging times and, simply put, there is no easy answer. And so we must explore, test, and implement many solutions. Yet there is one thing I am certain of, which is that together, and with support from our board and our state, our university will be here for the next generation of Iowans and beyond.

On a personal note, I remain honored and humbled to lead an institution that provides world-class education to over 32,000 students, employs nearly 25,000 Iowans, drives a significant portion of Iowa’s gross domestic product, and provides tens of thousands of Iowans critical health care every single year.

This is an immense responsibility, which is only magnified during times of crisis—as we now find ourselves. We, as leaders, have a responsibility to the institution and those it serves, to ensure it not only survives this crisis but thrives for many generations to come. How we, as leaders, manage this crisis will define our legacy.