Guidance on university research during the coronavirus pandemic

Kent State University continues to safeguard the health and wellness of our students, staff and faculty.
As you know, in response to concerns regarding progression of the coronavirus (COVID-19) the university has ceased face-to-face classes and strongly encouraged students to return to their homes through April 12.
Consistent with correspondence that you have received from President Diacon and Interim Senior Vice President and Provost Tankersley, Research and Sponsored Programs (RASP) offers the following guidance:

  • All RASP offices will remain open and business will be conducted as usual. Please use remote means, email, phone, Google Drive, to communicate with RASP staff. The Office of Sponsored Programs and the Office of Research Compliance (including IRB and IACUC review boards) will be ready to assist you with your grant applications and active projects.
  • Research events/workshops/etc. scheduled for campus locations through April 12 are canceled to avoid large gatherings.
  • Faculty may still access their offices, and researchers may work in their labs. We ask that you practice strict social distancing (staying 3-6 feet from others) and eliminate face-to-face meetings. Please allow opportunities for members of your team to work remotely to the extent possible.
  • Research labs are not closed; students may continue to work in labs, but this is completely at the student’s discretion. Students (graduate and undergraduate) are not prohibited from continuing to conduct research projects if they elect to do so during this time with the approval of their mentors. Again, social distancing procedures should be followed at all times and staggering times in the lab with other research team members is highly desirable. If student desks are in a confined area then a student should not enter if another student is already there. Students may use the Library or ask their faculty mentor for suggestions of other possibilities in your building, e.g., classrooms or conference rooms that are not in use, but individuals should not congregate with others in these rooms.
  • All university-sponsored travel – domestic and international – is canceled through April 13. This includes research-associated travel supported by URC funds or by grants. Discuss details with your unit leadership.

    Please do not hesitate to bring to my attention any unforeseen issues that arise related to your research and the guidelines above. The RASP Team is ready to provide support in every possible way.

Best wishes during these challenging times,

Paul E. DiCorleto, Ph.D.
Vice President for Research and Sponsored Programs