Chapman President Daniele C. Struppa shared the following message with faculty, staff and administrators on Thursday, March 26.
Over the past few weeks, you have seen senior staff engage in the process of making decisions at a rapid pace, as the COVID -19 pandemic quickly evolved in our own community. I want to highlight that our decisions, at every step, are guided by our commitment to ethical leadership and transparency. As this situation becomes increasingly more complex over the coming weeks and months, I want you to know that your leadership team is performing with a high level of compassion and integrity, with an unwavering commitment to the best interests of the University. We are guided by these values in our collective decision-making every day. You will see in today’s update that some critical decision have been made to maintain our financial stability through this crisis.
Daily Update, March 26, 2020
- To help safeguard Chapman’s financial health and flexibility, and allow for the possibility of operating for an extended time with COVID-19, we are announcing the following decisions:
- We have put a short-term hiatus on the hiring of open positions.
- At this time and until further notice, we will not authorize any new third-party consulting engagements. Chief Operating Officer and Executive Vice President Harold Hewitt and Vice President and Controller Behzad Binesh will review all existing consulting agreements. After discussions with department supervisors, some may be terminated.
- Effective immediately and until further notice, all university-funded travel is canceled.
- Although we are not, at this time, mandating a specific operating budget cut, new controls on operating budget expenses will be implemented today. Any expenditure above $1,000 will be reviewed and possibly canceled. We ask that all budget managers pull back on expenditures and make best efforts to reduce spending through the end of the fiscal year.
- An appeals committee of Harold Hewitt, Sheryl Bourgeois and Glenn Pfeiffer (each recusing herself or himself if the appeal comes from someone reporting to them) will review appeals to any of these decisions.
- In order to minimize personal contact, IS&T is planning to discontinue walk-up support during the current campus closure. More details to follow. All IS&T support team members are ready support the campus community via email or phone support. Also, we are finding a significant national shortage on webcams so please be patient if you have requested one from IS&T.
- The Chapman information security team would like to remind our remote community to stay safe online. The bad guys do not take a rest and are now spreading coronavirus-based phish emails. Stay alert, using working remotely security tips and phish alerts, at chapman.edu/security.
- There is also a global increase in the use of the Zoom platform for teaching and communication, therefore IS&T warns there has also been an increase in “Zoombombing” or unwanted visitors joining Zoom meetings to share offensive content. Faculty who are teaching in Zoom need to take a few simple steps to prevent this type of occurrence from disrupting their course meetings. Visit the IS&T security website for more information.
- It’s 2 p.m., so I hope you are logging into today’s Ask the Experts – COVID-19 Town Hall hosted by Vice President for Research Thomas Piechota. He is joined by Dr. Jerika Lam, Pharmacy; Dr. Steven Gjerstad, Economic Science Institute; Dr. Andrea Molle, Political Science; and Dr. Hesham El-Askary, Schmid Science and Technology who are already working on COVID-19 research and outreach. All faculty, staff and students are welcome to join with this link.
- Chapman’s Hilbert Museum of California Art has moved online for the duration of the current crisis, and is presenting “At Home with the Hilbert Museum,” posting on their Facebook and Instagram page (@hilbertmuseum) one work of art per day, with a quick-read story about the painting and the artist. The museum invites you to follow its social media pages and take a little art break each day to add some cheer.
- Air circulation in our buildings is being maintained, however temperature set points will be widened for cooling and heating. For those still on campus, we ask that you participate with this energy saving program. We also as you turn off the lights and other unnecessary equipment when leaving. Contact Facilities through our work order control system for assistance or adjustments.
As we head into the long weekend, in recognition of César Chávez day, I share with you a reflection from Wallace All Faiths Chapel Dean Gail Stearns.