Friday, November 13th, 2020
To help streamline communications during this time, the Chair’s Office is sending a periodic email with important information.
- Dean Coleman emailed today with a lengthy list of updates, including the work from home extension and his request for input on ways to ease faculty and staff burden and stress. Please read the email in its entirety for more information.
COVID-19 In-person Saliva Testing
- The Office of Human Resources sent a reminder regarding an in-person saliva testing opportunity on Monday and Tuesday, November 16 and 17, from 12:00-6:00 pm at the Field House. University employees are invited to take part in this testing event. Make an appointment here.
- Additionally, the State of Minnesota and Vault Medical Services have teamed up to offer at-home saliva testing for everyone, at no cost. Go to Vault: No-Cost COVID Testing For All Minnesotans to order a test.
First-Generation College Student Week
- Be sure to check out some of the #UMNFirst faculty, staff, and students in the Department of Psychology (@PsyAdvis and @PsychUMN on Facebook)! Read more at #UMN First Stories.
- The Co-Creating Through Design Group, composed of first-generation college students and professionals working at the UMN-TC campus, is looking to create a community of first-generation students, staff, and faculty at the University of Minnesota campus. The mission of the First-Generation College Community is to welcome, support, mentor, include, and make visible those who identify as first-generation college students at the University of Minnesota. If you consider yourself to be first-generation, sign up here. The information captured in the form will be used to create a directory and to organize our community. Questions about Co-Creating Through Design? Contact Jessica Thompson (email@example.com). Questions about the First-Generation College Community? Contact Edgar Arriaga (firstname.lastname@example.org).
- Today (11/13) is the deadline for changes to S/N grading for graduate students. Faculty teaching a graduate course that is not currently set up to allow for S/N grading may do so through the end of the day. Faculty who decide to extend the S/N grading option to students in their course(s), must notify students that the deadline to change their grading basis option is November 30, 2020. The deadline by which students may withdraw from a class is extended to December 1, to provide additional time if students who are struggling wish to utilize this option.
IT Security: Reduce Vulnerability While Working Remotely. IMPORTANT TIP!
- All University computers should connect to the University network once a month to help maintain a healthy connection. Please follow these steps at least once every 30 days:
- Login into the device at home
- Connect to University's Split Tunnel VPN
- Leave the VPN connected for most or all of a business day to ensure that each piece of software connects and updates.
Research and Teaching After Thanksgiving (including 5993, UROP, honors)
- Bob McMaster, Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education, clarified that students are allowed to access specialized academic facilities after Thanksgiving, as long as they are not required to use the spaces, there is no teaching taking place, and social distancing and other required COVID-19 prevention practices are followed.
- All students must have the opportunity to finish their course work successfully and with no disadvantage via remote formats. For example, if students in your PSY 5993 course were doing in-person lab work (data entry, animal care) but they are now home or choose to finish the semester working remotely, the instructor must make accommodations to allow the student to successfully complete the semester without penalty.
- Campus will remain open (similar to how it has been this fall) after Thanksgiving break. For example, the Libraries will continue to maintain hours and OCM classrooms will continue to be open to students to study and participate in class virtually.
Updates from the President
- Following Governor Walz’s announcement regarding further restrictions, President Gabel notified faculty and staff that those who can work from home should continue to do so through at least June 30, 2021. Additionally, she reminded us of the multiple COVID-19 testing options available, including via Boynton Health, the free saliva test, the in-person saliva testing options (noted above), and other free options around the state.
- Also this week, President Gabel sent another email regarding the variety of COVID-19 testing options, she asked us to prepare for Thanksgiving and Winter break by taking special precautions (i.e., “lay low before you go”), and she recognized our veterans in honor of Veterans Day.