The University is continually assessing the situation and closely following the recommended guidelines of the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) and the Chicago Department of Public Health (CDPH). Many of you have heard that other colleges and universities are stopping in-person classes on campus and moving to remote content delivery options. Our local public health officials have not yet advised ceasing in-person classes in Chicago, and we therefore intend to continue to offer classes in person and Roosevelt will remain fully open.
For now, there are no confirmed cases of Coronavirus at Roosevelt. We are actively monitoring for any suspected or confirmed cases in the Roosevelt community. If there is a confirmed case or a spike in absenteeism, we will follow guidance from the Chicago Department of Public Health, which may include delivering classes exclusively online for a period of time.
Please know that we are taking a very deliberate and informed approach to our response to Coronavirus that considers, among other things, the demographics of our students and employees. We know that you will keep this in mind as you review responses from other entities. For example, as we consider changing the delivery of course content, we are aware and have considered that many of our students do not have personal computers and some lack remote access to the internet. As we consider whether to make changes to our operations, we are considering the well-being of the members of our community at greatest risk for serious infection, including those who are over 60 years of age and those with serious health conditions. In sum, please know that we will never put the health, well-being or safety of our campus community at risk, and that we are weighing all of these important factors as we make decisions for our University.
We have already made several decisions consistent with guidance provided by the CDC and health officials to protect our community:
- TASK FORCE CREATION: A COVID-19 Task Force, led by the Dean of our College of Pharmacy, is meeting daily to update the community on any changes in the university’s response to this virus. Please continue to visit our Coronavirus Emergency Response Page for the most up-to-date information.
- TRAVEL: We have cancelled all funded overseas travel until further notice and have cancelled student travel by air, with the exception of athletics. Students currently studying abroad are being monitored following CDC guidelines. We continue to follow CDC guidelines for domestic travel and are directing any returning members of our community from level 3 countries to complete 14 days of self-quarantine before returning to campus.
- PERSONS AT RISK: We are closely following CDC guidelines for members of our RU family who the CDC considers to be at higher risk. CDC guidance states that people over 60 and those with heart disease, diabetes and lung disease are at greatest risk for serious illness if infected with COVID-19. They are advised to follow the advice of the CDC and to consult with their health care providers. The University supports working from home for anyone who needs to do so. CDC Information on high-risk complications.
- ONLINE LEARNING: We are developing plans to move all classes online in the event that public health officials recommend cessation of in-class learning. Our provost is working closely with deans, chairs and faculty leaders to use this week – while many of our students are on spring break – to develop plans to ensure that all our students can continue their education and we can deliver on our commitment to provide them the best educational experience possible.
I ask for your help in staying healthy: please stay home and consult with your healthcare provider if you have a cough, fever or difficulty breathing. Wash your hands frequently and avoid touching your face.
Thank you again for your understanding and your patience as we work through this unprecedented public health challenge.
Melissa Hogan, PharmD
Dean, Roosevelt University College of Pharmacy
Chair, Roosevelt University COVID-19 Task Force
Vice President of Student Affairs and Dean of Students