Covid 19 Update: April 7, 2020

Return to Campuses and Offices

Because the Federal and State governments have declared that social distancing must continue until the end of April, we cannot return to campus as planned on April 20. Instead, we will continue our academic programs remotely through the end of the Spring 2020 semester. We are very mindful of in-person labs and experiential requirements that exist in some majors and programs. To the extent that some students, because of accreditation requirements, must have these in-person experiences we will do our best, within government guidelines, to make those opportunities available as quickly as possible. Individual members of the faculty and staff to whom this will apply will hear from your deans directly should this become an option.

It is not likely that administrative staff will return to the office before sometime in May, but if there is a change we will let everyone know. We do not plan to bring staff back until it is safe to do so. Please continue to monitor your Touro email account for ongoing communications and updates.

Commencement

We all understand what commencement means to our students. We deeply value the sacrifices and hard work that they have all put forth along their academic journeys. It is for this reason that we have delayed making a final decision about commencement. However, the health of our students, their family members, and our staff and faculty are of paramount importance and we cannot jeopardize that under any circumstances.

It has now become painfully clear that we cannot plan for in-person graduation ceremonies scheduled for May and June of this year. At this point, the safest and most prudent course of action is to proceed with virtual commencements for all of our schools and programs. This past week we held a meeting of student leaders and senior administration to discuss options for virtual graduation ceremonies. Some very creative and thoughtful ideas were raised that will make these virtual ceremonies more personal and meaningful for the graduates and they will be used as a platform for our planning. We hope that you will be able to participate as well in creating a warm virtual celebration for your students and letting them know that you too wish to celebrate their accomplishments in the best way possible.

Today we informed the students that they will all receive caps and gowns as many have indicated that they want their regalia even if commencement were to be virtual. We are arranging for the vendors to have the students’ academic attire delivered to them directly. Students have been advised to check their emails for ordering instructions.

Each division and school will communicate to its graduates individually with specific details and information regarding their virtual commencement activities. These plans do not preclude having some celebratory in-person gathering in the future when health concerns have been allayed.

Summer and Fall Semesters

We are fully prepared for the summer semester for all programs to be held either in person or online. We are planning for the Fall 2020 semester to be on campus; however, we will certainly confirm all details as time goes on and specifics become available.

Student Housing/Meal Plan

For those undergraduates who have been availing themselves of meal plans or residing in student housing, we will be adjusting the cost of the Spring 2020 semester. Further details will be communicated to the impacted students.

Thank you once again for all your efforts to foster Touro’s academic and business continuity during this global pandemic. We extend our warmest holiday wishes to all those who will be observing these approaching holy days. As always, should you have any questions or concerns please do not hesitate to reach out to evptouro@touro.edu.