March 17, 2020
Dear Members of the Trinity College Community,
One of our most precious values as a liberal arts college is the face-to-face interactions we share with each other, which define our academic community. It is therefore with great disappointment that we have decided to continue remote learning through the end of the semester. I know that the resilience and creativity of this community will overcome these challenges, as we now tend to our collective health and well-being.
While we were hopeful that we would be able to resume in-person classes and bring everyone back together on campus, it’s now clear that won’t be possible. The declaration of a national emergency, evolving guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), and increasing restrictions globally and locally (in Hartford, in Connecticut, and in surrounding states) all make this decision necessary.
As we continue remote learning through the end of the semester, there will be many logistics to determine, and we are developing those plans now and will communicate them to you as soon as we can. Here is what we know now and want to emphasize:
Remote learning will continue through the end of the semester.
During spring break, we are actively moving to remote learning, and we will support students as they continue their Trinity education no matter where they are. We are especially grateful for the flexibility and dedication of our faculty, who are working tirelessly to keep students intellectually engaged, and to the staff in Information Services that is helping to make this possible, as well as for the support of Trinity’s Center for Teaching and Learning and our Center for Academic Advising.
Remote work by staff and faculty is strongly encouraged wherever possible.
Not all members of our employee community are equally able to work remotely, and our Office of Human Resources is attentive to their needs. But as an academic institution, we have the ability for large numbers of staff and faculty to avoid potentially spreading the virus by staying home. We encourage all who can work remotely to do so, and to conduct meetings virtually.
Students/families will receive partial refunds or credits toward room and board.
We are working out the details of this and will communicate them as soon as possible.
We will remain open for students who must stay on campus.
As we shift to remote learning for the full semester and events in the world continue to unfold, we will reach out to students individually to determine those who must remain on campus and those who need support to return home. We will continue caring for the needs of students who must stay on campus, but will require all others to return to their homes.
We will provide ways for students to get their belongings from campus.
We are also working on the details of how students will be able to retrieve their belongings, and we will communicate the options as soon as we have them. In the meantime, please know that your belongings are safe, and only those students with permission to be on campus will have card access. We urge others not to return to campus, as we all do our part to keep each other healthy.
In the meantime, please continue to refer to our college advisories website for the latest information and an updated FAQ, as well as a continually evolving collection of resources for our community.
Thank you for your patience and understanding as we work through this experience together. We will share more details in the near future. These are extraordinary times, but the strength of the Trinity community is just as extraordinary. Take care of yourself and others around you.
President and Trinity College Professor of Neuroscience