July 22, 2020
Final Instruction Plan, Extended Housing Cancellation Deadline, COVID-19 Screening, Town Halls Scheduled
We are pleased to report that much progress has been made by the Bowie State University Return to Campus implementation teams to finalize plans, procedures and protocols for operation in our Hybrid First-Year Intensive instructional model for the fall 2020 semester.
Be assured that all decision-making has been science-informed, data-driven and values-based with consideration for the health and safety of our campus community being paramount in delivering a high-quality educational experience for all of our students.
Course Delivery Plan Finalized
Our academic team has solidified course schedules for all incoming freshman students offered with a hybrid mix of in-person and online delivery methods. Online only options will be available for freshmen who elect not to come to campus. Students will be organized in cohorts to take the same classes together to build a sense of community through shared class experiences, collaborations and enrichment activities, while maintaining appropriate social distancing with a defined group. If freshman students do not already have computers, the university will provide them laptops to participate in their online courses, and access to internet hotspots.
Classes for all returning students will be primarily offered synchronously online at scheduled times and will be enhanced with additional virtual activities. Faculty have been working over the summer to develop new course materials and engagement methodologies to use the virtual environments to strengthen the learning experience. While COVID-19 has caused us to move to alternate modes of delivering instruction, the quality of the BSU academic offerings will continue to meet our established high standards. Individual student course schedules should be available to view in Bulldog Connection by end of the day Friday, July 24.
Housing App Cancellation Deadline Extended
As this new information may influence some students’ preferences about seeking university housing, the Office of Residential Life has extended the deadline to request housing cancellations through Monday, July 27 using the Room Accommodations Cancelation Form.
COVID-19 Symptom Screening and Campus Checkpoint
As the university prepares to move to Phase Two in our return to campus, COVID-19 symptom screening will be expanded to include all employees, providing a comprehensive, continuous assessment of the potential presence of the disease among members of the campus community. Beginning Monday, July 27, employees will receive a daily email with a link to respond to a short list of COVID-19 symptom questions before starting the workday. All employees, both those working on-campus and those teleworking, will be required to provide this daily health check as a primary tool to help keep our campus safe from spread of the disease.
This daily self-screening will be augmented with a change in vehicular access to the campus, also beginning Monday, July 27 and continuing through Aug. 15. All vehicles will be directed to enter campus through the guard station on East Loop Road, where security guards will pose the screening questions to persons who have not been authorized for on-campus work. Authorized staff will receive a dashboard tag to enable easy access at the checkpoint. This process will help assure that everyone entering the campus has adhered to the screening protocol. Loop Road will operate with a one-way traffic flow during this period, with all traffic exiting through the automatic gate on West Loop Road.
Town Hall Meetings Scheduled
As we all adjust to the many changes that will guide university operations in the coming months, we realize that there will be many questions from students, faculty and staff as you assess the impact on your personal situation. Several virtual town hall meetings have been planned to share more information about safety precautions and respond to your questions. Planned sessions are as follows with meeting links to be provided later:
- Undergraduate Students and Parents – Thursday, July 30, 3-4:30 p.m.
- Graduate Students – TBA
- Faculty – Monday, Aug. 3, 3-4:30 p.m.
- Staff – Tuesday, Aug. 4, 10-11:30 a.m.
- Freshman Students and Parents – Wednesday, Aug. 5, 5-6:30 p.m.
We look forward to engaging everyone in the conversations as we continue plans for an exciting and productive fall semester. As always, if you have questions, please email email@example.com.
Best wishes for your continued health and well-being.