An update from President Mark Kennedy on COVID-19, March 23

CU joined with Colorado’s public and private colleges and universities in engaging our Congressional delegation to request emergency aid for our students and institutions. I appreciate the conversations with our representatives in the House and Senate, who are crafting a stimulus and relief package to respond to COVID-19. View the letter here.

CU, yesterday and today, March 18

Dear Members of the CU Community,

As our community faces the substantial disruption brought about by COVID-19, we are well-served by our proud history of rising to challenges.

In the early 1920s, when Ku Klux Klan factions in the Colorado legislature threatened to cut off state funding unless CU President George Norlin purged the faculty of Jews and Catholics, Norlin stood firm and the university made its way without the funds but with its values intact.

Throughout our 144-year history, we’ve had floods and fires, disasters and mayhem, yet we always came together as a community to address challenges head-on. Today we face COVID-19 the same way. Our imperatives have been to protect the health and safety of our students, faculty and staff, continue to deliver on our educational, research and service missions, and prepare for what’s next.

I’m proud and appreciative of the work of faculty and staff across CU’s four campuses. With their help, we have quickly supported social distancing by transitioning classes from in-person to remote, limiting gatherings and suspending university travel, among other measures. I’m also proud of the ability of our students to adapt to unexpected detours on their educational journeys. We are by no means perfect, but we have done a lot right and have made doing the right thing our guiding principle. It will remain so as we confront what’s ahead.

The crisis will enter new phases in the coming weeks and months, and our goal must be to continue the can-do spirit we’ve demonstrated throughout our history. We must ensure the quality that is the hallmark of a CU education. We recognize that moving to remote teaching and learning on our campuses, particularly when the transition happens quickly, is not optimal. Teaching remotely is not the same as online teaching, where courses are designed from the outset for that delivery method. I am confident in our faculty’s ability in the weeks and months ahead to deliver on the promise of a quality education, no matter the delivery method. After we return to our traditional high-quality, on-campus and online educational experiences, we will apply what we learn now as we bridge to the future.

We very much appreciate the support of all of you inside and outside the university during this challenging time. When a crisis hits, a community must come together and its members must support one another. I trust you are doing that with you and yours. I am optimistic that as we draw on CU’s spirit of community, working together we will successfully navigate the uncertain months ahead.

For feedback contact: officeofthepresident@cu.edu 

All the best,

President

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CU on the Air: Updates on what we are doing at CU, March 13

CU on the Air podcast: Updates on the coronavirus and what we are doing at CU

(Friday, March 13, 2020) -- I talk about what CU is doing to ensure the health and safety of its students, faculty and staff as well as emergency plans in place and long-term impact on the university.

Statement from President Kennedy, Chair Gallegos March 11

Ensuring the health and safety of our community, March 6

Coronavirus: The steps we are taking to ensure the health and safety of our CU community

(Friday, March 6, 2020) -- The health and safety of the University of Colorado community is our highest priority as we coordinate our response to addressing coronavirus (COVID-19). It is receiving the highest level of attention on our campuses and system administration. I am having regular, ongoing conversations with the four campus chancellors and engaging experts inside and outside the university. We are regularly communicating with the CU Board of Regents. It would be irresponsible if we did not prepare for the likely event of cases of the virus on our campuses. We have contingency plans for our fundamental activities in teaching and research, and we continue to refine those and additional operational contingencies. We are keeping students, faculty and staff apprised with updates. While we are addressing the issue at hand, we are also taking the long view and planning for dealing with it in the weeks and months ahead. We are prepared for a fast-moving and ever-evolving situation.

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