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Coronavirus Campus Communication 11/20/2020 – Official Message from the Office of the President

Coronavirus Campus Communication 11/20/2020 – Official Message from the Office of the President

Dear Students and Colleagues,

Governor Murphy announced on Wednesday that colleges and universities across NJ, NY, DE, PA, RI, MA, and CT are encouraged to take additional measures to safeguard against the second wave of COVID-19, with a particular focus on the time period from Thanksgiving through the New Year. The measures outlined include but are not limited to encouraging institutions to transition to remote delivery of instruction after the Thanksgiving break and to encourage students who opt to leave campus for the Thanksgiving break to remain off campus.

As a result of this announcement and the nimbleness of our own Restart Plan, the following actions will be taken at Ramapo College:

Instruction
Effective Monday, November 30, 2020 the College will discontinue in-person instruction. Faculty will communicate directly with their students their plans for course delivery through the end of the fall semester.

Residence Life
Effective 10:00 PM on November 30, our residence areas will close. In following the Governor’s recommendations, it is strongly encouraged that all residential students, who have not yet departed for the Thanksgiving holiday, vacate their housing assignment by Wednesday, November 25. Special population groups (such as international and housing insecure students) who need to remain on campus will be invited to apply for an exception to stay. Today, Residence Life will be following up with specific information for residents, so I encourage students to heed the deadlines and be responsive to those messages. Dining services will be available for resident students who must remain on campus, but will be limited.

All residential students who move off campus will be issued a room and board credit (prorated to December 1, 2020) toward their spring 2021 housing. Inquiries about the room and board credit may be directed to the Office of Student Accounts via studentaccts@ramapo.edu.

Campus Access and Services
The College will continue to ensure that on-campus environments for work and study are safe and accessible. Several offices across the College that, based on the functions they perform and the services they provide, will continue operating in-person on our campus. In addition, labs and studio spaces, computer labs, and library study spaces that are required for student use to complete fall semester coursework will remain accessible.

Safety and Prevention
The Pandemic Assessment Team will send a message to all employees and students in the coming days with important information about community spread, safety and prevention measures, travel, testing providers, reporting, and other resources as we head into peak season for the virus.

2020 is teaching us quite a lot about resilience and some days the weight of those lessons feels burdensome for us all. Author Jodi Picoult wrote, “The human capacity for burden is like bamboo – far more flexible than you’d ever believe at first glance.” We will continue to find our way through this.

Peter P. Mercer
President