COVID-19 Student Information

Quick Resources:

From the Office of the President:

March 16, 2020

Alternative Instruction Extension
For the remainder of the semester, classes will continue through alternative instruction. Please be in touch with your instructors as needed.

Guidance for Students

  • Please do not return to campus if you have a safe alternative, be it with friends or family.
  • While the University will ensure that we have sufficient residence hall rooms available for students who truly have no other alternatives, we cannot promise that we won’t have to consolidate housing for all students in one central facility to minimize staff requirements.
  • We recognize that not all students can return home, but again, if you have alternative housing options we strongly encourage you to examine their viability for your housing needs.
  • None of us can predict how long the present situation may last and if you remain on campus you might be here for some time with very limited services.
  • For students in University-provided housing on all campuses, we are exploring the potential for refunds for the remainder of the semester. We will have guidance on next steps as soon as possible.

From the CFANS Director of Student Services:

Tips to successfully complete the semester

1. Find patience with yourself and others
This is easier said than done. Many of your instructors have probably never experienced a disruption to their teaching mid semester, let alone one that changes how they teach the material. You might be asking them questions about your course logistics as they are simultaneously thinking through how to deliver the learning to you as best as possible. I can assure you they want to do the best job they can.  Please be patient with them, and your classmates, as the learning continues.

 2. Leverage technology and support opportunities
Spend some time looking at the available Canvas features and see what may be new or changed since you were last in class. For example, has the syllabus been updated? Or perhaps a new feature is available in Canvas that was not included earlier in the semester? Take some time to update your profile. This will help your instructor and your classmates connect with you. Take a brief opportunity to test your Zoom capabilities before your first online course meeting. Information Technology is available to assist with any questions and concerns you may have.

3. Remain in community
Unlike most courses where you could spend time before and after class chatting with classmates, many virtual classes don't have the same opportunity for small talk. Find ways to connect with other students in the class so you can share questions and concerns as if you were seeing each other in person. One method available is to invite a small group to meet through Google Hangouts. Also, if you were involved in a club or organization, or were part of a residential community, perhaps find a time to keep meeting virtually as a group.

We encourage you to take care of yourself and look out for each other. The University will continue to provide mental health resources with phone and video counseling sessions available. It's also important to help stop stigma related to COVID-19 by knowing the facts and sharing them with others in your community.

4. Stay Organized
Organizational styles vary from person to person.  I offer the following ideas, but find a system that works for you.  For example, some of you are more energetic in the morning, and that is when you can best be engaged with your learning, whereas others of you are more alert in the evening.  Whenever you are at your most energetic, dedicate that time to learning. Additionally, you might consider:

  • Save a copy of all your syllabi to your desktop for easy reference, or print them off.
  • Make a list of all your assignments and arrange them chronologically.
  • Use Google Calendar (or another planner) to schedule your time.
  • Make to-do lists.
  • Participate in online discussions (when available) for your courses.
  • Ask questions.
  • Take breaks.

5.  We are here for you
Your course instructors are the best and most direct sources of support in the learning process.  If you have any questions or concerns, please communicate with them directly. They may not know you have a question until you inform them directly! In addition to your instructor, Department Heads are also available to support students in their learning.

Please reach out to your CFANS academic advisor if you have any questions about the upcoming advising and registration process.    

You can continue to send questions to healthresponse@umn.edu and check for the most up-to-date information on the Safe Campus website.

Thank you for your continued patience through this difficult time. Remember to take care of yourself and, if needed, we have support available for students, in-person or remotely.

#CFANSAdapts