May 1, 2020: Campus Update

From: Michael S. Roth
Subject: Campus Update

Dear students,

I hope that you are staying safe and healthy in these challenging times. I write today to share our current thinking on the fall semester and our response to COVID-19.

I want you to know that while we are planning for a number of different scenarios, we remain hopeful that we will return to the full residential experience that we treasure so much this fall. Of course, the welfare of our students, faculty and staff is paramount, and Wesleyan will not resume normal operations until all proper public health precautions have been taken. These include building capacity to test people who study or work on campus, provide supportive isolation to those who fall ill, and minimize opportunities for the spread of any illnesses. 

We are working hard on this now and, rest assured, we will do our utmost to make our campus safe. That said, there are many uncertainties, some of which should be resolved in the next two months or so. For this reason, we will update you all in early June and expect to make a decision about a residential fall term in early July. We hope it will be a traditional semester, but we also expect to offer robust remote alternatives, should they be helpful for some students. When we announce our decision about fall offerings, it will be crucial for our planning to hear quickly from you—within two weeks of our announcement—if  you intend to ask for a leave for any part of the academic year…

April 29, 2020: Public Health Update

From: Tom McLarney, MD
Subject: Public Health Update

To the Wesleyan Community,

Wishing you all health and safety. My thoughts go out to those of you who have been personally been affected by Covid-19.

As is often the case, the more you know about something, the more there is to know.  This is certainly true about Covid-19.  I would like to summarize a number of current issues, knowing that this information will continue to evolve as we learn more.

First, we are becoming aware of the wide variety of ways that Covid-19 can present. From the very beginning, we have all known about the symptoms of fever, cough, and shortness of breath that gradually build (in contrast to influenza, which typically hits hard and fast). This week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) officially added six other symptoms commonly seen with the coronavirus, including: loss of taste and smell, chills, shaking chills (rigors), headache, muscle aches, and sore throat…

April 29, 2020: Zoom Forum with President Roth for International Students

From: Michael S. Roth and Rob Rosenthal
Subject: Zoom Forum with President Roth for International Students

Dear international students,

Greetings from Middletown. Wherever you are in the world, we hope that this finds you safe and well.

First, we’d like to invite you to join us for a Zoom forum on Friday, May 1 at 11 a.m. Eastern time (see Time Zone Converter), where any questions you have will be addressed. Please feel free to email questions in advance to presoffice@wesleyan.edu.

This is a time of great stress and uncertainty for everyone, but we know that as international students, you may be dealing with distinct challenges—whether it’s being separated from loved ones due to travel restrictions, trying to keep up with online learning from a different time zone or, for seniors, seeking employment in the U.S. and around the world. We understand that tensions between the United States and other countries might also increase anxiety and uncertainty.

All of this is a lot for anyone to handle, and we encourage you to reach out and seek support. There are many people here at Wesleyan who stand ready to help you, whether you remain on campus or are currently elsewhere in the world…

April 24, 2020: Enrollment Update from Wesleyan University

From: Michael S. Roth
Subject: Enrollment Update from Wesleyan University

Dear student and family,

Congratulations again on your admission to Wesleyan University!  I hope that during these trying times your family is staying safe and healthy. Whether you have already committed to Wesleyan or are still weighing options, I would like to share some updates on how Wesleyan is responding to COVID-19.

Enrollment and Potential Deferrals
Students around the country are wondering whether campuses will be open in the fall. At Wesleyan – as at most residential schools in New England – the hope is to have a full, residential academic year. Of course, the welfare of our students, faculty and staff is of paramount importance, and Wesleyan will not resume normal operations until all proper public health precautions have been taken. These include building capacity to test people who study or work on campus, provide supportive isolation to those who fall ill, and minimize opportunities for the spread of any illnesses. In the event we are unable to resume our residential educational experience in the fall or your student is unable to travel to campus due to COVID-19 related issues, we will automatically grant a deferral of enrollment until the spring. That said, we are earnestly preparing now to provide a safe, robust and holistic education to our students this fall.

In the unfortunate event that campus is not open in fall, we will offer accepted students the option of enrolling in the spring semester (granted automatically) or in the fall 2021 (by request).  Those students choosing not matriculate at either of those times would have their places at Wesleyan offered to other deserving students. Like any student taking extended time off, they will be asked to reapply should they wish to join a Wesleyan class in the future… 

April 23, 2020: Public Health Update

From: Tom McLarney, MD
Subject: Public Health Update

To the Wesleyan Community,

Greetings from the Davison Health Center. As of Monday evening, Connecticut Governor Ned Lamont has mandated by executive order that face coverings be worn in public anywhere a 6-foot distance is unavoidable, including in stores, pharmacies, and at grab-and-go restaurants, as well as when using public transportation and in the workplace. Employees working on Wesleyan’s campus are required to wear face coverings while at work and when the 6-foot distancing requirement is unattainable. Employees may have some flexibility when working in offices alone with the door closed, but must have a face covering available. Please see the State of Connecticut’s “Safe Workplace Rules for Essential Employees.”

Wesleyan is offering free face coverings to students, faculty, and staff on campus. Students may pick up masks at a pop-up station on the main floor of Usdan. Staff and faculty masks are available for pick-up at Wes station in the basement of Usdan…

April 16, 2020: Financial Impact of COVID-19

From: “Michael S. Roth”
Subject: Financial Impact of COVID-19

I write to you today with deep pride and gratitude for all you have accomplished these past tumultuous weeks. Students have shown patience and resilience in the face of unprecedented disruption. Faculty and our ITS department have worked tirelessly to create a robust digital experience at a moment’s notice. Staff have ably transitioned to remote working environments while juggling multiple priorities, doing so with great admiration for colleagues in Residence Life, Health Services, CAPS, dining services, facilities and public safety still working on campus …

April 16, 2020: HR Update

From: Lisa Brommer
Subject: HR Update

I hope this finds you well. I write today to share several important updates for faculty and staff as we all navigate the coronavirus pandemic together.

I’m pleased to share that Wesleyan has adopted new provisions in all of its health plans through Cigna to cover testing and treatment for COVID-19. We are also participating in provisions of the CARES Act that will allow eligible employees to access funds through loans or hardship withdrawals from their Supplemental Retirement Accounts. In addition, employees who utilize Dependent Care Flexible Spending accounts may change their annual elections due to …

April 15, 2020: Public Health Update

From: Tom McLarney, MD
Date: Wednesday, April 15, 2020 at 5:10 PM
Subject: Public Health Update

To the Wesleyan Community,

I trust this note finds everyone in good health. I write today with another public health update on the coronavirus pandemic.

Since my last update, the CDC has announced that there will be antibody testing available within the next few weeks, which will measure two antibodies: Immunoglobulin M (IgM) and Immunoglobulin G (IgG).

Let me offer a quick Immunology 101 lesson: …

April 14, 2020: Summer Programs Announcement

From: Rob Rosenthal and Andy Tanaka
Subject: Summer Programs Announcement

Dear colleagues,

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we have decided not to hold any programming on campus this summer. This decision was made first and foremost to protect the safety of the Wesleyan community, as well as the safety of others, including minors, who would typically live in our residential setting over the summer. Making this decision now provides sufficient time to convert programs to online offerings, when possible. It also allows staff to focus on preparing for New Student Orientation and the fall term, which…

April 8, 2020: Public Health Update

From: Tom McLarney, MD
Subject: Public Health Update

To the Wesleyan community,

Wishing you all health and safety during this tumultuous time.

Since our last update, the CDC has made new recommendations regarding face masks. These are the key points to know:

1. ) Masks should be worn when going out in the public such as grocery shopping or trips to the pharmacy. This also applies to students on campus picking up their take-out meals.
2.) The current recommendations…