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University Operations Update

Friday, March 13, 2020

To the University Community,

Across the world and here at home, the COVID-19 crisis presents constantly changing challenges. Our priority remains to ensure the health and well-being of our university and health system community, our greater Richmond community and beyond.

Toward that end, we would like to update you on decisions and information that are important to maintaining operational and academic continuity of the university.

Teleworking, Flexible Scheduling and other social distancing to prevent infection spread

  • Working remotely is a good way to achieve social distancing to prevent the spread of infectious disease while conducting the work of the university. We strongly encourage teleworking when possible and managers are instructed to be flexible in developing telework arrangements with your staff that allow VCU’s work to be continued remotely. Highest consideration for teleworking arrangements should be given to individuals identified by public health authorities as high risk or who are caregivers for such individuals.
  • VCU managers must ensure that employees who work remotely have the necessary tools to complete their work responsibilities in a timely manner, have taken precautions to ensure data security, and are in regular communications. Visit Telework@VCU for resources on working and collaborating from home.
  • VCU managers also should consider staggered work schedules when appropriate to increase social distancing.
  • The smaller the group, the less chance of spreading infection. Remote technology is encouraged for all meetings, and mandated for university meetings of 20 or more people unless a special exception is granted. Requests can be made to covid-19@vcu.edu. VCU Health System team members should refer to health system meeting procedures.
  • For the time being, university faculty and staff searches and interviews should be conducted remotely.

VCU Operations

  • Both the Monroe Park and MCV campuses remain open and operational. However, as indicated above, VCU employees and their supervisors should discuss and implement telework agreements when possible.
  • We continue to strongly encourage Monroe Park Campus students to remain at home for the extended spring break and to continue their coursework remotely beginning March 23. Health Sciences students should refer to the March 12 Senior Vice President’s communication to them.
  • Visit Residential Life and Housing for up-to-date information on residential operations. Please note that Starting Monday, March 16 at noon, card access will be shut off and only active for residents who have completed the housing registration form and received approval to remain on campus.
  • Please visit the Student Affairs FAQ site for housing information. In particular we appreciate your patience as we work through questions about refunds and other matters.

We are working on multiple fronts to address matters as new information becomes available. We will communicate with you directly on an ongoing basis and as plans and procedures are finalized. During this unusual time, it is important that you continue to monitor your VCU email account and the university COVID-19 web site, which is updated daily.

Please remember that all university policies remain in place regardless of working or studying remotely, and that our commitment to an inclusive community remains strong whether we are in a virtual or real campus environment.

Sincerely,

Gail Hackett, Ph.D.
Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs

Meredith Weiss, Ph.D.
Vice President for Administration