(click on podcasts to hear interview with President Ted Carter)
All four University of Nebraska campuses announced today that as COVID-19 continues to spread, they will transition to remote-access learning after spring break in order to help protect the health and safety of their communities.
Classes at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, University of Nebraska at Omaha and University of Nebraska at Kearney will be taught remotely beginning the week of March 30, when students return from spring break, and will not meet in-person for the rest of the semester. UNL and UNO have also cancelled classes next week to allow faculty additional time to prepare for remote delivery of their coursework. The University of Nebraska Medical Center will move to remote teaching for preclinical courses the week following the spring breaks, which vary by program.
All campuses over the past several weeks have asked faculty to plan for the possibility of remote learning as COVID-19 has spread across the United States and globally. While university business operations are continuing as normal at this time, campuses have also begun work-from-home preparations in the event large numbers of employees would be asked to work remotely.
NU System President Ted Carter praised the chancellors, their leadership teams, faculty and staff for their thoughtful, diligent and student-focused planning.
“The health and safety of both the University of Nebraska community and our communities at large is our highest priority. That’s especially true in the uncertain and rapidly evolving global situation that we find ourselves in,” Carter said. “The chancellors and I, along with the Board of Regents and Governor Ricketts, have been in constant communication about how best to protect those we serve – starting with our 51,000 students – while also continuing the critical work of the University.
“The steps we are taking today will require all of us to make some adjustments. But we believe this is the right thing to do for our community. I know our faculty, staff and students will rise to the challenge.”
Campuses are encouraging students who live on campus to return home given that social distancing can help slow the spread of the virus. University residence halls and dining facilities will remain open, however, to support those who are unable to return home. Some shared facilities like libraries are expected to remain open, although services and hours may be limited.
University leadership teams are continuing to discuss major events, including spring commencement ceremonies and athletic events, and will share any decisions as they are made.
All NU campuses previously announced the cancellation of university-sponsored student international travel for the remainder of the spring semester. All non-essential university-sponsored international and domestic travel for students, faculty and staff has now also been suspended until the end of the semester. The university is strongly encouraging students and employees to consider whether personal travel is necessary.
Detailed information about each campus’ COVID-19 planning can be found at the following websites: