We are officially in November and I hope you are staying #IUSBStrong. I want to share a few updates with you, including how we are continuing to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic and planning for the spring semester.
First and Foremost – Thank You!
I know everyone is working hard and COVID and Zoom fatigue have set in. To lift your spirits and thank you for your perseverance, we will be providing a complimentary grab & go lunch Wednesday, November 4 from 11:30am to 1:00pm for students, staff and faculty. There will be four pick-up points: Wiekamp, Education and Arts, Northside, and University Center. Be sure to check out the Daily Titan for specific locations.
Commitment to Service Survey
Here at IU South Bend we are committed to learner-centered service, personalized to address your individual needs. We are also committed to continuously improving to better serve you. Between now and the end of the semester we ask that you complete this brief survey when you receive service or support from an office on campus (either in-person or virtually). The survey should only take you three minutes to complete and is designed to help us learn how we can better support you.
In addition to using the link above you will also find posters in offices across campus with a QR code you can use to access the survey. You’ll also see the survey in emails you receive from staff supporting you. The survey is anonymous and will be open through Friday, December 18, 2020. Thank you for taking the time to help us learn and grow as a campus.
Response to COVID-19
I know that many of you have been following the COVID-19 trends in our area and have concerns about what’s happening both locally and nationally. To date, the number of cases on campus has been extremely low, making campus one of the safest places you can be, besides your own home. Our design for office environments and classrooms was created to provide for maximum safety and it is working. Based on the careful daily review of all cases that the University is aware of, to date there has only been one documented case of possible viral transmission in work or learning environments on our campus. Our campus positivity rate is significantly lower than that of our surrounding community. The greatest risks for contracting the virus turn out to be interactions with friends and family and off-campus work places which may put you in closer contact with others than our campus restrictions. You might also be interested to know that, based on University analyses thus far, students with more in-person schedules are showing reduced COVID-19 risk, likely because they may spend more time masked and socially distanced from others than those taking courses virtually or online.
Your continued adherence to our mask wearing, social distancing, mitigation testing, and contact tracing protocols is critical. Thanks especially for your participation in mitigation testing. This is an important way we identify individuals who are positive so we can better control the spread of infection. Also please be sure to get your required flu shot. If you get your flu shot at a non-IU facility, submit the flu vaccine reporting form.
Finishing Fall and Starting Spring Semesters
After November 20, we will further de-densify campus with remote instruction. However, campus offices will remain open and staff will still be here to serve you both in-person and virtually. Spring semester begins January 19 and will offer a mix of in-person and online course options, with the first three weeks of the Spring semester being online only for all courses. Courses scheduled to be in-person will transition from remote to in-person on February 8.
Thank you for doing your part to keep our campus community safe. It is in times like these that our commitment to humanity and community bring us together even though we must stay apart.
With Hoosier Spirit and Titan Pride,
Susan Elrod, PhD