Kent State to Stop Face-to-Face Classes

Kent State University

March 10, 2020

Dear Members of the Kent State University Community,

We applaud Ohio Gov. Mike DeWine’s proactive approach to keeping our state safe during the ongoing spread of coronavirus (COVID-19).

Therefore, at 4:25 p.m. TODAY, we will cease face-to-face classes through April 12. Remote instruction will begin March 16.

To slow transmission of the virus and consistent with recommendations from state health authorities to limit large gatherings and practice social distancing, Kent State is taking the following preventative and proactive actions:

  • March 16-20: Classes will be held via remote instruction.
  • March 23-29: Spring break will occur as scheduled.
  • March 30-April 10: Classes will be held via remote instruction.
  • April 13: Face-to-face classes will resume.

Clinical rotations for the College of Podiatric Medicine, the College of Nursing, and the Allied Health and Associate Degree of Nursing programs on the Regional Campuses will continue, but face-to-face classes will cease.

Kent Campus students are strongly encouraged to return to their homes during this modified spring schedule, but residence halls will remain open with reduced dining options. While completing classes remotely, students are encouraged to practice appropriate social distancing and enhanced preventative public health and hygiene measures.

During this modified spring schedule, overall operations of the university will continue, and the University Library will be accessible. Faculty may continue to use their offices and labs. However, meetings are suspended. All campuses will remain open to serve students who rely on services, including health services, dining services, residence halls and intercollegiate athletic facilities.

Events scheduled for campus locations through April 12 are canceled to avoid creating large gatherings. No additional spring semester events will be scheduled. Athletic events will follow NCAA and Mid-American Conference (MAC) guidelines.

We take all of these steps to ensure the health and safety of our campus community and to be proactive in an effort to prevent illness while continuing the academic mission of the university.

We will continue to monitor the outbreak and will align our recommendations with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the World Health Organization and other city, state and federal agencies.

There are currently no campus-associated cases of COVID-19. As of this communication, there are three confirmed cases in Cuyahoga County, and we expect that there will be more across the state.

Additional Guidance for Students

  • Kent Campus students who choose to remain on campus may stay in their residence halls for the duration of the modified spring schedule.
  • Students can continue to use dining locations and the University Library.
  • However, the Warren Student Recreation and Wellness Center will be closed until April 13.

Guidance for Faculty and Staff

  • Staffing of each unit will continue as currently in place; however, if reasonable employee needs so dictate, on-site staffing may be reduced.
  • Faculty information for academic continuity can be found at FAQ.
  • Additional employee and supervisor information can be found at FAQ.

Travel

  • Effective immediately, all university-sponsored travel – domestic and international – is canceled through April 13.
  • While Kent State is not able to stop travel for anyone taking personal trips over spring break, we strongly urge members of the Kent State community to consider such plans carefully at this volatile time and recommend that all heed CDC travel notices.
  • We recommend that anyone who has traveled to a highly affected area and develops a fever (temperature greater than 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit) or symptoms of a respiratory illness, such as cough or shortness of breath, seek medical advice by calling your local health department. If you cannot reach your local health department, call ahead before going to the emergency room or doctor’s office to notify them of recent travel to countries with elevated levels of COVID-19.

What You Can Do

The same steps you take to prevent the spread of the flu and the common cold will also help prevent the spread of coronavirus:

  • Avoid large gatherings and follow social distancing recommendations of 3-6 feet.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available.
  • Avoid touching your mouth, nose and eyes.
  • Cover coughs and sneezes with your arm or a tissue.
  • Avoid exposure to others who are sick.
  • Stay home while you are ill (except to visit a healthcare professional) and avoid close contact with others.
  • Get adequate sleep and eat well-balanced meals to ensure a healthy immune system.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

People who think they may have been exposed to COVID-19 should contact their healthcare provider immediately and call ahead before visiting the healthcare provider’s office. Most people with COVID-19 develop mild to moderate illness without the need for medical care. Those with underlying health conditions are at a higher risk for developing serious illness. Currently, there are no vaccines available to prevent novel coronavirus infections.

Because Flashes take care of Flashes, we ask you to show care and compassion to your fellow Flashes and neighbors who may be experiencing anxiety or fears.

For more information, visit Kent State’s coronavirus information page or email coronavirus@kent.edu.

Additional information can be found here:

I appreciate your understanding and continued cooperation during these challenging times. I also extend my thanks to the hard-working teams who are focused on keeping our community safe and healthy.

Sincerely,

Todd Diacon
President