Seminary Closes Campus through April 12, 2020, and Enacts Remote Learning for the Remainder of the Spring Semester
As we continue to watch and be responsive to what is happening at Northwestern University, the cities of Evanston and Chicago, and within the U.S. and globally, our top priority remains keeping our students, staff, and faculty safe. In an effort to best safeguard our seminary community and the campus moving forward, the Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary campus, including the Styberg Library, will be closed, effective Monday, March 16, and will remain closed through Sunday, April 12.
In addition, the Leadership Team in consultation with the Committee on Faculty has made the difficult decision to continue classes in an alternative format of face-to-face meetings for the remainder of the spring semester. Our faculty are dedicated to providing the best educational experience possible and are prepared to work with students to ensure their success in the weeks ahead.
Factoring in the wealth of information we now have regarding COVID-19 and with the remainder of the Spring 2020 classes operating remotely, the Leadership Team has also made the painful decision to cancel the 163rd Commencement Ceremony of Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary, scheduled for Friday, May 22, 2020. In the coming weeks we will engage in broader discussions for alternate plans to celebrate the hard work and remarkable achievements of the Class of 2020.
Between now and April 12, our staff will be working remotely. Every effort will be made to ensure the day-to-day operations of the seminary continues with little to no interruption. Though staff who are essential to the operations of our facilities, I.T. infrastructure, and the business office will be on campus during this time, every effort will be made to limit how often and for how long they will be on campus. We will continue to monitor the situation in the days ahead to determine if this period of remote working for our staff will need to be extended.
Despite this interruption to our campus work, we remain committed to providing a place of hospitality for our students. Students living in Loder Hall dorm and our three apartment buildings can remain in the seminary’s housing. They will continue to have access to Food for Thought Café and the student kitchen in Lower Loder Hall. In addition, the Office of Student Life and the seminary’s chaplain will be working with key members of the community to provide support and resources for our students during this time, paying particular attention to our international students to ensure their success.
The Leadership Team will continue to assess the current situation and you can anticipate updates on the Garrett COVID-19 webpage. In an effort to centralize communication at this time, all questions related to the campus closing and the seminary’s response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) should be directed to CampusSafety@Garrett.edu.
We urge our beloved seminary community to care for their whole selves during this time and to follow the guidelines provided by the CDC. Finally, we join with so many around the world in prayer for those who have already been diagnosed with COVID-19, for our healthcare workers, and others at a high-risk.