Coronavirus Update Dec. 15: Spring Semester Updates

Update

Coronavirus Update Dec. 15: Spring Semester Updates

Dear Campus Community,

With the move to remote instruction for most classes after Thanksgiving, UCCS will be implementing some financial relief options for faculty, staff and students.

As we reach the end of a very unusual year, I would like to share some important updates on the spring semester.

Given the increasing cases of COVID-19 and the anticipated spike after the holidays, we will begin the spring 2021 semester instruction remotely. The semester will still start as planned on Jan. 19 and instruction will be remote for the first five weeks. Effective February 22, we will once again offer a blend of in-person, high flex, hybrid and remote courses, just as we did during the fall semester.

This decision was not made lightly. The epidemiologists at El Paso County Public Health advised us that even with the introduction of the COVID-19 vaccine, it will take a while to return to normal. This includes in-person activities on campus, as well as travel and personal gatherings. Starting the semester remotely is the most responsible action to Protect the Pride and keep our students, faculty, staff and the greater Colorado Springs community as safe as possible.

For our students who live on campus: Students with need will be allowed to move in at the beginning of the semester. Some examples of need include students with in-person labs/classes/clinicals, housing insecurities, campus employment and athletic commitments. Move-in for all other students will take place in February in two phases and, for those students, room and board costs will be prorated accordingly. Move-in will be split into groups over a two-week period to allow for COVID-19 testing and ensure adequate quarantine resources are available. More information on the staggered return to housing and new COVID-19 testing protocols will be provided through Residence Life and Housing. 

For our faculty and staff: The time between semesters and the first five weeks of the spring semester will be similar to the remote period we are currently experiencing. While remote work is encouraged, the campus is not closed. Research access is permitted for faculty, graduate researchers, undergraduate research assistants and research staff, just as it was in the fall semester. Managers will determine if their work areas need to have an on-campus presence during the first weeks of the spring semester.

Spring Break: As we have all learned during the past year, flexibility is key. We recognize the value of spring break, but we must also balance the risks associated with travel during a pandemic. The five days of spring break will be split into two shorter breaks. As we transition from remote learning, the first break will be February 17 – 19. The second break will take place March 22 – 23.

I recognize the challenges these decisions create. We are all exhausted from pandemic-related changes and disruptions to our day-to-day lives. But with the distribution of vaccines beginning soon, we can finally see the light at the end of the tunnel. Now is the time to focus on our long-term goals and persevere through the final challenges of this extraordinary year. 

Thank you for your continued commitment to student success. Wishing you and your family a safe and peaceful holiday season and a happy new year.


Respectfully, 
 VENKAT REDDY (signature)
Venkat Reddy 
Chancellor
 

 

 

Read the previous update