Chapman President Daniele C. Struppa shared the following message with the campus community on Friday, May 8.

The planning for a fall return to campus continues to take shape. This week, Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer Harold Hewitt established fourteen separate task forces to begin preparation for the “CU Safely Back” initiative. Many of you will be tapped to contribute to or actively participate in a task force as we begin the monumental challenge of evaluating every aspect of our campus life and putting measures in place to ensure we can bring our Chapman Family safely back together.

As stated in Harold’s charge to the task force leaders, we will open—in a fashion consistent with the prevailing guidance from State and County health authorities—as scheduled, with instruction beginning August 31. With many unknowns, we are also responsibly preparing for possible contingencies such as blending in-person and remote instruction to accommodate social distancing and group size caps, and even the less-likely scenario of remote learning for the first part of the semester.

Overseeing and coordinating this work will be an Executive Committee chaired by Harold and consisting of Executive Vice President and Provost Glenn Pfeiffer, Executive Vice President Sheryl Bourgeois, Vice President and Chief Human Resources Office Brian Powell, Vice President Janine DuMontelle, Vice President Jamie Ceman and Public Safety Chief Randy Burba.

The overarching goal across all task force work is to assess the risk and establish a phased re-opening plan that takes into account five established mitigation strategies:

  • Physical Distancing
  • Symptom Monitoring and Surveillance
  • Public Health Interventions
  • Face Coverings
  • Sanitation Protocol

These strategies will be incorporated into Chapman’s re-opening plan through the following identified task forces:

  • Faculty return to campus
  • Staff and administrators return to campus
  • Facilities preparation and operation
  • Residence Life reopening
  • Campus Dining Services reopening
  • Screening/testing/tracing
  • Enrollment of new and transfer students Fall 2020 and Spring 2021 during COVID-19
  • Athletics reopening
  • Ramping research back up
  • IT support for reopening
  • “CU Safely Back” Communication strategy
  • Large gathering preparation
  • Symptom monitoring and surveillance requirements for reopening, established by government agencies
  • Financing Chapman’s Covid-19 response

These teams will work with experts in their respective fields both inside and outside of Chapman, including an infectious disease epidemiologist who has been consulting with us throughout our response efforts. As you get contacted for participation, support, information or data relating to any of the task forces’ work, I ask you to make it the highest priority.

Additional Friday Updates, May 8, 2020

  • As we continue to work through the details of our return to fall, we are working with the assumption that campus events and large group gatherings will be very limited for several months after we return. I’m asking that the marketing of fall events be held until early June while we finalize the details of how we will manage social distancing and the safety measures needed to hold large gatherings in campus facilities.
  • I hope you’re taking advantage of the rich resources being offered in the Working Remote Series sponsored by the Office of Human Resources, Fish Interfaith Center, IS&T and Financial Services.  Of particular importance is learning about fiscal year-end preparation.

Another weekend is upon us and I leave you with our weekly reflection from Fish Interfaith Center Dean of the Chapel Gail Stearns entitled “Taking a Breath in the Midst of COVID-19.”