In yet another major change with the key focus on protecting the health and well-being of the Washington University community and the St. Louis region in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the university has announced the suspension of all in-person summer programming, both on campus and internationally, until at least Aug. 1.
The news was shared Wednesday with all students via an email from Marion G. Crain, interim provost and executive vice chancellor for academic affairs and the Wiley B. Rutledge Professor of Law, and Lori S. White, vice chancellor for student affairs
Crain and White noted that where possible, programming would be postponed or transitioned online.
They also noted that students who were approved in March to remain in the residence halls and continue to have circumstances that prevent them from returning home will be allowed to stay over the summer.
Summer School, which is moving all its classes online, will have an updated course listing available sometime next week.
“These changes are significant and we know they will create disruption and disappointment for many of you, but we believe they are necessary in order to keep our community safe,” Crain and White wrote.
This suspension includes, but may not be limited to, the following:
- All in-person classroom, lab or studio instruction or use of these spaces
- All in-person undergraduate research
- All student on-campus programming and activities, including athletics
- All conferences and camps, regardless of whether there is an in-residence component
- All in-person university-sponsored events, whether on campus or off campus
- Use of university space for events, whether hosted by a university department or by an outside entity
- Student workers, unless they are working remotely.
The return of graduate students to research labs will be an integral part of a phased research ramp-up, which could start after stay-at-home orders are lifted. Therefore, graduate student research may be able to gradually restart prior to August 1.
In addition, the summer study-abroad and international academic experiences will be significantly scaled back, in large part because of the unpredictability of evolving travel advisories and restrictions.
Crain and White advised students who were planning to participate in an international summer program to find a remote or local academic or professional opportunity.
Career Center and academic advisers are available to assist students with identifying other opportunities.
Below are the new policies regarding summer study-abroad and international academic experiences:
- All university-owned and -operated study-abroad and international academic experiences for undergraduate and graduate students are canceled or postponed for summer 2020.
- For programs operated by third-party providers, undergraduate applications may continue with acceptance and terms of participation in locations not affected by university international travel restrictions.
- Summer undergraduate international research awards will be deferred until after summer 2020.
- Summer graduate and professional student international research and individualized academic programming must be requested and approved through a petition process and protocols per the university’s international travel policy.
School deans will be in touch with additional information about specific programs.
“You continue to inspire us with your determination and resilience, and we are so proud to see the many ways you are rising to the challenges of the current situation, and how you are adapting to the tremendous changes that have taken place over such a short period of time,” Crain and White wrote to the students.
“Thank you for your optimism and courage, and for your support for our efforts as we work to make the best of these difficult circumstances.”