NC State Limiting People on Campus, Moving All Classes Online

Dear NC State Community,

Thank you for your hard work, patience, and resilience as we come together to deal with the impacts of the coronavirus (COVID-19). As you know, this situation continues to rapidly change, including new directives regarding the size of gatherings and other actions coming from the CDC, the White House and Governor Cooper, and new guidance from the UNC System.

I have a significant update today that will change our campus operations for some time. Following the direction released today from UNC System Interim President Bill Roper, in order to protect the safety and health of the campus community and limit the spread of COVID-19, NC State is implementing significant actions to limit the number of people on campus.

The university will remain open with minimal on-campus operations, which includes limiting students on campus, moving fully to online courses, requiring remote or alternative work arrangements for the majority of employees, and closing or significantly limiting core services and facilities.

To be direct, until further notice, if you don’t need to be on campus, you shouldn’t be on campus. Specifics follow.

Campus Housing and Dining

Effective immediately and throughout the remainder of the spring semester, NC State students who occupy university housing are instructed to remain at or return to their permanent off-campus residences, unless granted an exception. Residential facilities will remain open until 5 p.m. Sunday, March 22. If you are on campus currently, please make plans to return to your permanent residence by this date. If you are currently away from campus, you have until this date to return to campus to gather essential items only. You do not have to move all of your belongings out immediately.

Students who have no other housing option must complete a Special Circumstance Housing Request Form by Thursday, March 19 at Noon. One of the following criteria must be met in order to remain in on-campus housing:

  1. International students
  2. Those experiencing housing insecurity, or
  3. Those with personal extenuating circumstances

University Housing and Fraternity and Sorority Life will send additional information and specific guidance directly to on-campus residents later today.

Minimal campus dining facilities will remain open to serve the small number of students who receive an on-campus housing exception and employees maintaining campus operations. The dining facilities will transition operations to provide takeout or similar options.

Any decisions about refunds for housing and dining fees will be made by the UNC System after the immediate needs of safety and security are addressed.

Other Campus Facilities and Services

The Wellness and Recreation Center will be closed until further notice.

Talley Student Union will be open with limited hours and limited dining options. Witherspoon Student Center will be closed until further notice.

Hunt and Hill libraries will operate on restricted hours to continue core educational services.

Student Health Services will be available to maintain ongoing health care (such as medication refills, follow-up of laboratory tests and brief questions) via secure messaging in the Healthy Pack Portal. Some acute medical consultation may be available in this manner on a case-by-case basis. A limited number of in-person appointments for acute illness in the Main Campus location are available for students and will need to be made by calling 919-515-2563.

The Counseling Center will remain available for students by calling 919-515-2423. All services will be available remotely through phone or video. The center will not be open for walk-ins or face-to-face meetings with students.

The university has plans in place to keep research operations, labs and related facilities operational. Additional information will follow for appropriate employees.

NC State University Police will remain fully operational.

Campus facility availability and hours are subject to change. For a list of campus facilities and services, please click here.

Academic Continuity and Online Learning

Students, we are committed to doing all we can to make sure you are able to continue your academic progress on time. For the remainder of the semester, all NC State courses will be completed online. There will be no face-to-face class, laboratory or other instruction for the rest of this semester. Students are instructed to remain off-campus and complete their courses online.

Students, we know you can be successful and we are here to support in every way possible.  You will be hearing directly from your professors this week about your classes and their transition to online learning. We understand that this is likely a stressful time for you. Please be patient and know that we will be adjusting some course policies, such as schedule revisions, so that you can make any needed changes to your courses once you have talked with your professors in more detail. We will provide additional information on policy updates as soon as possible.

This is a fluid situation, and we are working hard to find the best ways to help you complete your semester or degree. We will do everything we can to assure you can complete your courses successfully and graduate on time.

Remote Work and new COVID-19 Leave Provisions

Given the growing concerns over COVID-19, the system and university are adjusting our recent guidance about remote and alternative work options. Effective immediately and until further notice, only mandatory employees who need to report to work on campus should do so. All non-mandatory employees – including temporary employees and student workers – will continue to be assigned work and will be expected to work remotely to the fullest extent possible.

For this COVID-19 issue, the definition of mandatory employee is changing to: employees who are directed by their supervisor to report to work, at a designated university worksite other than their personal residence, at specific dates and times. It is possible that an employee will have a portion of duties that are on campus and can fulfill the remainder of their duties remotely.

Supervisors are responsible for assigning mandatory employees, and for assigning and tracking their employees’ remote work. To be clear, these changes do not remove employees’ responsibilities to complete their work assignments.

Mandatory and non-mandatory employees – including temporary employees and student workers – who cannot work remotely because of childcare or eldercare needs due to COVID-19-related school and facility closings will receive paid administrative leave until March 31, 2020, for the period of time they are unavailable to work.

Additionally, non-mandatory employees – including temporary employees and student workers – who are unable to work remotely because their position duties cannot be performed remotely, will receive paid administrative leave until March 31, 2020, for the period of time they are unable to work remotely.

Any employees who are sick due to symptoms of a cold, flu, or COVID-19 or who are caring for a dependent with such symptoms will receive paid administrative leave through March 31, 2020.

More information about the new COVID-19 Faculty and Staff Leave Provisions is available online from Human Resources.

Next Steps

I understand these are big changes and this is a lot to absorb. As I previously mentioned, this is an unprecedented and rapidly changing situation. We will provide additional information to students, faculty and staff over the coming days as it becomes available.

Please make a point to stay informed on a daily basis. As we all move toward a new reality in the days and weeks ahead, it is important that we all stay updated on measures we can take to protect ourselves, and stay abreast of updates from campus. Visit www.ncsu.edu/coronavirus for regular updates and a growing list of helpful information and resources for the campus community.

I realize that this is not the spring term that any of us hoped for or planned. The weeks ahead will be challenging – not just because of these changes, but because most of us will be away from the people, places and spaces that make up our community. I truly believe there are still many ways we can come together and support each other from a distance, and I encourage you to do that.

Please stay safe, take care of yourselves, and do all you can to protect yourselves, your families and friends, and of course, our Pack. We’ll be in touch with more information in the coming days.

Randy Woodson, Chancellor