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Coronavirus Information and Campus Updates

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Latest Campus Communication

Campus Update from President Rooney: 5/20/20

May 20, 2020

体育投注Dear Colleagues,

I hope this finds you doing well.

体育投注I have had the opportunity to connect with many of you during Zoom meetings with the Schools and Divisions to engage in discussion around the College’s response to COVID-19, to situate where we are today, and to outline our planning framework and decision timeline for the fall semester. As we continue to work toward a safe reopening of campus, I remain committed to providing updates on new developments as we know them, as well as how they might impact the College, our employees, and our students.

As you likely know, the first phase of Governor Cuomo’s Reopening Plan began last Friday, May 15, and the Finger Lakes Region met the required conditions to reopen. Education is in the fourth phase, which is estimated to begin June 29. As the earlier phases are completed, we will know more about our ability to implement our own phased reopening at that time.

体育投注Again, our main priority is to have a safe return to campus in the fall, and we continue to plan and prepare a number of contingencies that will allow us to maximize the percentage of operations that will be on-ground, recognizing that there will be necessary changes in our campus living and learning environments to ensure the safety and well-being of our students, faculty, and staff.

As an extension of our planning work to this point, I have comprised a Campus Reopening Task Force that will plan and coordinate the campus reopening in response to COVID-19. Guided by the College’s mission and commitment to inclusive excellence, the Task Force Steering Committee will provide direction, coordination, and project management to four planning teams: Teaching and Learning, Student Engagement and Success, Campus Operations, and College Relations. The Committee will synthesize the recommendations of the teams and develop a comprehensive plan for reopening campus and ongoing operations by July 1 for cabinet consideration and approval. This plan will be informed by the CICU Creating Safe and Resilient Campuses: Suggestions for Reopening and Reimagining Colleges and Universities in New York and will meet state and county directives.

Steering Committee membership includes:

  • Matha Thornton, co-chair, Student Affairs Division
  • Christine Boev, co-chair, Wegmans School of Nursing
  • Christine Birnie, Wegmans School of Pharmacy
  • Kathy Broikou, Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. School of Education
  • Al Camp, Student Affairs Division
  • Melissa Goodwin, School of Arts and Sciences
  • Stacy Ledermann, Enrollment Management Division
  • Eileen Lynd-Balta, Academic Affairs Division
  • Diane Martz, Financial Affairs Division
  • Stacy Slocum, Financial Affairs Division
  • Clair Smith, School of Arts and Sciences
  • Kate Torok, President’s Division
  • Terri Travaglini, Student Affairs Division
  • Sara Vinch, Institutional Advancement Division
  • Omar Watts, School of Business
  • Derick Wigle, Student Affairs Division

The charge and membership of each of the planning teams are as follows:

Teaching and Learning

体育投注Working collaboratively with academic departments, the Teaching and Learning Planning Team will consider the academic calendar, classroom and learning space capacity, course schedules, teaching modalities, pedagogies, accommodations, professional development needs, and workforce considerations to effectively prepare for the upcoming academic year and ensure that quality academic instruction continues uninterrupted.

  • Eileen Lynd-Balta, co-chair, Academic Affairs
  • Melissa Goodwin, co-chair, School of Arts and Sciences
  • Nabila Ahmed-Sarwar, Wegmans School of Pharmacy
  • Christine Birnie, Wegmans School of Pharmacy
  • Mia Breitkopf, Lavery Library
  • Marilyn Dollinger, Wegmans School of Nursing
  • Colleen Donegan, Wegmans School of Nursing
  • Ann Marie Fallon, School of Arts and Sciences
  • Chad Goulette, Office of Information Technology
  • Hugh Lambert, School of Business
  • Joellen Maples, Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. School of Education
  • Whitney Rapp, Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. School of Education
  • Jesse Redlo, Golisano Institute for Developmental Disability Nursing
  • Katie Sabourin, Academic Affairs
  • Clair Smith, School of Arts and Sciences
  • Deborah Uman, School of Arts and Sciences
  • Omar Watts, School of Business
  • Jason Welch, Registrar’s Office
  • Theresa Westbay, School of Arts and Sciences

Student Engagement and Success

The Student Engagement and Success Planning Team will develop flexible plans for returning to campus in fall 2020 addressing student housing, enrollment, athletics, support/wellbeing, engagement, academic support, and related policies with health and safety as the first priority.

  • Stacy Ledermann, co-chair, Office of Freshman Admissions
  • Derick Wigle, co-chair, Office of Residential Life
  • Kathy Broikou, Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. School of Education
  • Michelle Erklenz-Watts, Center for Career and Academic Planning
  • Becky Kieffer, Health and Wellness Center
  • Jill McCabe, Athletics
  • Amanda Metzger, Office of Student Engagement and Inclusion
  • Clarence Norman, Higher Education Opportunities Program
  • Todd Sodano, School of Arts and Sciences
  • Yantee Slobert, Multicultural Affairs

Campus Operations

体育投注The Campus Operations Planning Team will develop operational plans for a safe return to campus for students and employees. Following the guidance from the CICU and state and county directives, the team will generate policies and procedures for implementation. Focus areas of their work include classrooms, residence halls, dining facilities, offices, and other public spaces. In addition, this team’s work will focus on developing the plan for the resumption of broader campus-based activities, including access to campus for visitors.

  • Al Camp, co-chair, Office of Safety and Security
  • Terri Travaglini, co-chair, Student Affairs
  • Christine Boev, Wegmans School of Nursing
  • Mike Boller, School of Arts and Sciences
  • Karl Williams, Wegmans School of Pharmacy
  • Dave DiCaro, Office of Safety and Security
  • Cherie Evans, Registrar’s Office
  • Melissa Jadlos, Lavery Library
  • Dan Kinsman, OIT
  • Diane Martz, Financial Affairs
  • Angela Obuhanych, Office of Human Resources
  • Jeff Ross, Facilities Department
  • Stacy Slocum, OIT
  • George Stooks, Facilities Department
  • Ken Widanka, Facilities Department
  • Susan Wisniewski, Financial Affairs

College Relations

The College Relations Planning Team will gather bi-directional and interactive constituent engagement and communication strategies and refine or adjust based upon the current and evolving pandemic and economic situations within the timeframe outlined by the Task Force Steering Committee. The team will also make communication recommendations and lead the coordination of Task Force campus updates to all campus constituents.

  • Kate Torok, co-chair, Office of Marketing and Communications
  • Sara Vinch, co-chair, Office of Institutional Advancement
  • Melissa Greco Lopes, Office of Marketing and Communications
  • Todd Harrison, School of Arts and Sciences
  • Julia Overton-Healy, Center for Career and Academic Planning
  • Dave Roberts, Office of Freshman Admissions
  • Maya Temperley, Office of Sponsored Programs
  • Teah Terrance, Institutional Advancement–Alumni Relations
  • Carolyn Vacca, School of Arts and Sciences

I am confident in our collaborative spirit, creative thinking, and in our steadfast commitment to our students. We are at our best when we work together, each day, to deliver a Fisher education. We have rallied as a campus community, supported each other and our students, and successfully navigated our response together. I look forward to continuing that approach to this work with all of you.

体育投注Thank you, as always, for your continuing good work in support of our mission and our students.

体育投注Kind regards,

Gerard J. Rooney, Ph.D.
President


Previous Campus Communications

Campus Update from President Rooney: 5/13/20

May 13, 2020

Dear Colleagues,

I hope this finds you doing well.

This past Saturday, we held the Celebration of the Class of 2020 on social media. While the activities were primarily hosted on the College's Facebook page, content was shared on Instagram and Twitter as well. Throughout the morning, we shared video messages, slideshows, and other celebratory content. I hope you were able to tune in and participate. The celebration included very inspiring speeches by Ranita Williams, our senior class president, and Kristen Resetar, now a double Cardinal who represented our master's and doctoral students. To see the Celebration in one place, visit the website at go.pilates-rx.com/celebration.

体育投注The Celebration was the perfect end to a memorable week - not only for our graduates and their families, but also for those of us who are living this experience with them. My thanks to the Class of 2020 Celebration Committee and to all who were involved in the planning and execution of these School-based and College-wide events in an effort to provide our students with well-deserved recognition.

Campus Update

Although it has been announced that the Finger Lakes Region will begin to reopen those sectors included in the first phase of Governor Cuomo's reopening plan, our campus remains closed and access is restricted at this time.

Beginning this weekend, we will be permitting residential students on campus to retrieve the remainder of their belongings and to check out of the residence halls. Students will be permitted by appointment only, and the number of appointments each day will be limited in order to maintain safe social distancing and will comply with the Governor's executive orders.

Academic Year 2020-2021 Planning

体育投注As you know, according to the Governor's reopening plan, education is in the fourth phase. And, as I mentioned last week, the Commission on Independent Colleges and Universities (CICU) has formed a Restart Higher Education Task Force of higher education leaders from across New York State. Our main priority is to have a safe return to campus in the fall, and we continue to plan for that scenario allowing for and considering national, state, and local guidance and mandates. We have been preparing a number of contingencies that will allow us to maximize the percentage of operations that will be on-ground. The planning scenarios recognize the changes in our campus living and learning environments necessary to ensure the safety and well-being of our students, faculty, and staff.

As an extension of this work, we have formalized our planning structure and developed the Campus Reopening Task Force comprised of constituents from across the Schools and Divisions. The Task Force Steering Committee will develop the plan for reopening our campus and provide direction, coordination, and project management to four planning teams: Teaching and Learning, Student Engagement and Success, Campus Operations, and College Relations. This plan will be informed by the CICU Restart Plan for Higher Education and will meet state and county directives.

Members of the Task Force Steering Committee include:

  • Matha Thornton, co-chair, Student Affairs Division
  • Christine Boev, co-chair, Wegmans School of Nursing
  • Christine Birnie, Wegmans School of Pharmacy
  • Kathy Broikou, Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. School of Education
  • Al Camp, Student Affairs Division
  • Stacy Ledermann, Enrollment Management Division
  • Eileen Lynd-Balta, Academic Affairs Division
  • Diane Martz, Financial Affairs Division
  • Stacy Slocum, Financial Affairs Division
  • Clair Smith, School of Arts and Sciences
  • Kate Torok, President's Division
  • Terri Travaglini, Student Affairs Division
  • Sara Vinch, Institutional Advancement Division
  • Omar Watts, School of Business

My thanks to Matha and Christine for their leadership of the Campus Reopening Task Force, to members of the Steering Committee, and to all those who will be involved in this work. We are committed to bringing our Fisher community back to campus as soon as we are safely able to do so.

Summer Online @ Fisher

I am pleased to report that we have met the credit hour budget for the summer sessions, the first of which begins on Friday, May 15. As you know, all of our summer courses will be taught online this year. My thanks to all of the faculty who will be teaching this summer and the work involved in transitioning those courses to prepare for online instruction.

Salary Reduction Plan

体育投注Our plan to address the impacts of COVID-19 in our FY20 and FY21 budgets has, and will, position us well to manage through these uncertain times. As part of that plan, and to prepare to address potential budget shortfalls in the coming academic year, we are implementing a graduated College-wide salary reduction plan for all employees.

体育投注The reductions will be 5, 7.5, or 10 percent, depending on salary level. The vice presidents, deans, and I started salary reductions of 15 and 20 percent, beginning May 1.

体育投注Salary reductions for twelve-month employees will be reflected in the June 26 paycheck (for work beginning on June 6) and for nine- and ten-month employees, it will be reflected in your first paycheck following your return to work. Regardless of the start date of the reduction, the percentage reduction will be applied to your annual salary or hourly rate.

体育投注The details of your individual reduction will be outlined in a personalized letter that will be provided to you by May 22, 2020.

The reduction period is currently planned through May 31, 2021 (or August 31, 2021 for nine-month faculty). The College will reevaluate this plan as new information becomes available.

I understand the personal impact this reduction in salary will have on our employees. Our goal in taking this action now is to ensure fiscal stability in the coming year to position the College for continued success.

体育投注The best way for us to navigate these uncertain times is to work collaboratively to realize the full potential of our campus community. I have every confidence that together we will be able to do so. Thank you, as always, for your continuing good work in support of our mission and our students.

体育投注Kind regards,

Gerard J. Rooney, Ph.D.
President

Campus Update from President Rooney: 5/6/2020

May 6, 2020

Dear Colleagues,

I hope you and your families are staying healthy and keeping safe.

This is a bittersweet week for us as we are usually together with our graduating seniors on campus for Senior Week activities, and with our master's and doctoral candidates for hooding and award ceremonies leading up to our Commencement Ceremony. I am grateful to each of you for the important role you have played in their Fisher education. This year, we are celebrating our 66th graduation and the graduates of our Class of 2020 will bring the number of Fisher alumni to 32,000. We should all take great pride in their collective accomplishments and successes both in and out of our classrooms.

I have had the pleasure of connecting with many of our seniors over these last few weeks, and in those conversations, they expressed their gratitude for all that Fisher had provided them, their pride in having earned a Fisher degree, and their desire to celebrate their graduation in person. As I have shared in recent messages to our students, we look forward to holding an in-person Commencement for this year's graduates when we are able to do so safely.

To that end, much has been planned to celebrate and recognize our graduates online using Zoom, social media, and our website throughout this week. On Saturday morning, beginning at 9:30 a.m., the College's Facebook page and other social media channels will be sharing video messages, slideshows, and other celebratory content all morning long. The complete schedule is now available on go.pilates-rx.com/celebration体育投注, a page which will also transform Saturday morning to honor the Class of 2020. I hope you will plan to join us. My thanks to all who have been involved in the planning and execution of these events in an effort to provide our students with well-deserved recognition.

Pause NY and Academic Year 2020-2021 Planning

As you may have seen, this week, Governor Cuomo unveiled his four-phase approach to reopen New York State beginning May 15. Education is in the fourth phase, along with arts, entertainment, and recreation. This additional guidance from the state will inform our continuing planning about how we will resume operations on campus. I look forward to working together with all campus constituencies as we continue to develop an operational plan that is best for Fisher.

We are also in regular contact with the Commission on Independent Colleges and Universities (CICU), which has formed a Restart Higher Education Task Force of higher education leaders from across New York state. The group aims to develop a checklist of best practices for reopening our campuses, guided by public health and safety. We hope that the Task Force's work will help shape and further the discussion with the Governor's Office about more fully opening colleges and universities in the fall. In addition to this work at the state level, the private college and university presidents of the Rochester area have started to meet weekly to discuss areas of potential collaboration and to share thoughts on addressing the various contingencies that we are all considering.

May 1 Decision Day

As you know, May 1 was the Universal Candidates' Reply Date for first-year students. I am pleased to report that our deposits have surpassed our budget expectation for this population. We will continue to accept qualified students and enrollment deposits in the coming weeks and months ahead. Like many of our peer institutions, we have decided to extend our deposit deadline to June 1 to work with families who may need more time to make a decision due to the financial impacts of COVID-19. To that end, we do anticipate continued activity in the coming weeks. As is typical for these student populations, recruitment will also continue for new transfer and graduate students.

体育投注This positive news is truly a testament to all of the good work we are doing as a campus community. As we recognize and continue to build on these early indicators, we know that we need to also consider factors that have the potential to impact our fall enrollments and our ability to operate fully as a campus community. It is prudent for us to acknowledge our successes and align our expectations with the reality of this new and evolving educational climate that will change our campus living and learning environments as we know them today.

My thanks to all who played a part in bringing us to this point in our recruitment cycle, and also to those who will be involved in the important work that lies ahead.

Work-From-Home Period Update

体育投注As we have done since the onset of COVID-19, we will continue to be guided by state and county regulations and policies. The continuing safety of all members of the St. John Fisher College community continues to be our first priority. In response to, and in line with, the Governor's reopening plan and social distancing guidelines, we will continue our work-from-home until we have further guidance in this area. At that point, we will share with the campus more detailed plans regarding the sequence in which departments will return to campus. Information about summer hours and vacation carryovers is forthcoming from the Office of Human Resources this week.

This Friday, we will hold our scheduled May Board meeting virtually. We will work to provide a board report to you shortly thereafter, which will include a summary update on our progress in this final quarter of our fiscal year as well as information about our revised FY21 budget, including enrollment and residential student projections.

In these final days of this extraordinary semester, as we gather remotely online to celebrate the Class of 2020, we should also celebrate our successful transition this spring. We were agile, responsive, and student-focused, and we remained faithful to our values and our commitment to educational excellence. I am so proud of our campus community, and I am grateful to each of you for your continuing good work on behalf of our students and for your belief in our mission.

Kind regards,

Gerard J. Rooney, Ph.D.
President

Campus Update from President Rooney: 4/29/2020

April 29, 2020

Dear Colleagues,

I hope you and your families are staying healthy and keeping safe.

体育投注Since the onset of COVID-19, we have been working diligently to address short-term fiscal and operational impacts of the pandemic. As our focus is now directed on planning for FY21 (June 1, 2020 - May 31, 2021), we know there will be significant changes to how we operate as a college community.

As we near the end of our current fiscal year on May 31, and in response to the near- and long-term consequences of COVID-19, the College continues to make decisions related to maintaining operations, managing overall expenses, and planning and preparing for the operational and financial uncertainties of the next few months and coming academic year.

In preparing our revised FY21 budget, we are operating with the following plans:

  • Fully online summer courses.
  • No campus-sponsored events through August 1.
  • Continued pause of all non-mission critical-hiring.
  • Continued practice of reduction/elimination of all non-salary related spending, with new expenditures, including capital investment, focused on the continued support of online instruction and maintenance of critical business operations.

体育投注As a reminder, we have also made the decision to hold tuition, room and board, and fees at 2019-2020 levels.

体育投注After extensive deliberation and thorough discussion of other possible alternatives, we have made the difficult decision to temporarily furlough a number of staff members across campus. Approximately 15 percent of our full-time employees and a number of our part-time employees are being furloughed. Supervisors have had individual conversations with those employees who have been impacted. Our commitment to them is that the College will cover the cost of medical, dental, and vision benefits during the furlough period. We have also shared with them that our expectation is to bring them back to work on or around August 1, presuming we are able to return to campus and resume our normal operations.

Working with leadership within each division, we modeled multiple scenarios and gave careful consideration to how individual departments would be affected. We strove to make decisions as equitably as possible, taking into account a number of factors and considerations. These decisions were based on the critical functions needed during the summer. Consideration was also given to what College activities could be postponed or significantly reduced during the summer months, with the least possible impact on our students.

In addition to temporary furloughs, we have taken a number of actions to align expenses with projected revenues. These include:

  • The permanent closure of the Early Learning Center. By way of background, in summer 2015, due to low interest, the summer program in the Early Learning Center was eliminated. In 2018, when the Town of Pittsford voted for full-day kindergarten, the impact on the Center’s after-school program was significant and resulted in the elimination of that program. The staff has been notified, and we are in the process of notifying the families impacted.
  • Additionally, the vice presidents, deans, and I will take salary reductions beginning on May 1. Graduated college-wide salary reductions will also be implemented for all faculty and staff in the new fiscal year. Details will be shared with employees no later than May 15. This decision will be reevaluated once fall semester enrollments are known. Finally, there will be no salary or merit increases for faculty or staff in FY21, and as such, we will revisit staff performance reviews and faculty evaluations in the fall.

I recognize that these actions are extraordinary, but they are also necessary. These difficult decisions will allow us to continue to provide the best Fisher education possible now and in the future. Above all, they will help to position the College for continued institutional success.

体育投注We have been through a lot together over the last two months. Our common focus and concern for each other – our students, faculty, and staff – has enabled us to overcome the adversity we have faced and made us a stronger community. I have every confidence that together we will continue to succeed in this unprecedented period.

体育投注In closing, please accept my sincere thanks to each of you for your dedicated commitment to the College.

体育投注With gratitude, and

体育投注Kind regards,

Gerard J. Rooney, Ph.D.
President

Campus Update from President Rooney: 4/22/2020

April 22, 2020

Dear Colleagues,

In this final week of classes, you have my sincere thanks for all you have done to reach this point in the semester. You have collaborated together, met our students where they are, and have fulfilled our collective commitment to their success. I am most grateful.

I write to provide some College updates:

Work-From-Home Period Update

The continuing safety of all members of the St. John Fisher College community continues to be our first priority. In response to the extension of the Governor’s Executive Stay-At-Home Order and social distancing guidelines, we will continue our work-from-home period through May 15. We will continue to be guided by state and county regulations and policies and will reevaluate the work-from-home period as that information changes.

Commencement Planning Update

体育投注A Virtual 2020 Celebration Committee has been formed and is working on ways to recognize the Class of 2020 on May 9, the day we would have gathered together to celebrate their graduation at the Blue Cross Arena. Last week, we surveyed all eligible candidates for graduation – both undergraduates and graduates – to gather their input and ideas. A full schedule of opportunities to join in the celebration will be shared as the date approaches.

Virtual Research and Creative Work Symposium

We will be holding our 4th annual Student Research and Creative Work Symposium on April 24–26 using an online platform called Symposium. Instructions on how to access the virtual symposium will be sent on Friday morning. Over 70 students have prepared posters, videos, and live talks. I would encourage you to explore the offerings, use the chat feature to engage with students and provide feedback about their videos and posters, and join one or more of the live presentations on Friday afternoon. My thanks to Dr. Kristin Picardo for her continued efforts to bring this opportunity to our students.

Additional Updates

This week, we have a series of Board Committee meetings to provide the Trustees with updates on our progress in this final quarter of our fiscal year and present revised projections to the FY21 budget.

体育投注We are now beyond the emergency response to the COVID-10 pandemic. As such, I have asked Dr. Matha Thornton to lead an Operations Planning team that will develop multiple scenarios that may impact the campus for reasons beyond our control in the coming months. As this group begins its work, and updates become available, those will be shared more widely.

体育投注As I said in my update to campus last week, it is important for all of us to realize that we are in a period of significant uncertainty. With each day comes new information and guidance. As such, we must remain vigilant in monitoring key revenue indicators, maintaining investments both in strategic and revenue enhancing programs and initiatives, and implementing cost controls that will keep expenses aligned with projected revenues.

Finally, in looking back over the last two months, it is hard to believe the changes brought about by this pandemic. We have moved at an exceptional pace, made swift decisions, and adapted to a very challenging and unprecedented situation. I know it has not been easy and I want to express my sincere appreciation for all of the ways you have adapted and approached your individual roles at the College.

You and your family have my continued best wishes. Thank you, as always, for your unwavering commitment to our students.

体育投注Kind regards,

Gerard J. Rooney, Ph.D.
President

Campus Update from President Rooney: 4/15/2020

April 15, 2020


Dear Colleagues,

I hope you and your families are remaining healthy and safe.

体育投注At the onset of the coronavirus pandemic, it became clear that our business model needed to swiftly change from an on-ground to an online focused enterprise. I remain in awe of our collective ability and institutional will in accomplishing all that we did in such a short period. As we enter the final weeks of this unprecedented semester, I want to share some recent updates and decisions.

As was previously announced, all summer courses will be offered online. As well, all College-sponsored campus activities and programs are now canceled through August 1. The decision to hold the Buffalo Bills Summer Training Camp will be made by the National Football League and the Bills organization. We will continue to update you on our work-from-home policy as more information becomes available.

This new means of operating has come with a different set of economic realities. The most significant impact we have felt in the short-term is the absence of our residential community of students and the concomitant loss of revenues. Refunds and credits have been processed to our residential students for nearly half of the funds they had paid us for their spring semester room and board, totaling $3.1 million.

体育投注Concurrently, we have invested in our technology assets to ensure that those who needed assistance in the transition to online learning were able to get it. Our annual strategic investment in the campus technology infrastructure positioned us well to respond to this unanticipated disruption. We have also reallocated resources to support additional and innovative ways to engage with our accepted students during this crucial decision-making time.

体育投注It is important for all of us to realize that we are in a period of significant uncertainty. As such, we will remain vigilant in monitoring key revenue indicators, maintaining investments both in strategic and revenue enhancing programs and initiatives, and implementing cost controls that will keep expenses aligned with projected revenues. This approach will give us the ability to respond quickly, if necessary, to any unforeseen circumstances in the coming fiscal year.

体育投注We had a planned 2.95% increase for tuition, room, and board for the 2020-2021 academic year. In light of the economic challenges that have been a result of the pandemic, we have made the decision to keep the cost of attendance constant next year for all students and their families, a $3 million impact in FY21. We made this decision as we make all of our decisions - in the best interest of our students and families and with our continued commitment to maintaining the affordability of a Fisher education. We hope that this will assist our families in an otherwise uncertain time. Incoming first-year students have been informed of this decision, and we will be informing all current students later this week.

Since my last campus update, the Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees met to discuss the impacts of COVID-19 on the FY20 budget, and began discussion of a revised budget forecast for FY21. We reviewed the restated FY20 budget forecast, including lower revenues in room and board, gifts for operations, interest income, and auxiliary and other revenues, reflecting variance from the FY20 budget of $5.3 million.

As you know, we have already implemented several cost control measures in response to current year financial impacts of the pandemic. Those measures included the reduction and/or elimination of all non-salary related spending through the end of the fiscal year, pausing all non-mission-critical hiring for the remainder of the fiscal year, and limiting capital expenditures to those that support the transition to and continuation of online instruction and the work-from-home environment.

体育投注Our annual discipline of including a contingency provision in the budget has allowed us to continue paying all of our employees, to this point, and has enabled us to maintain essential business operations. As we work to reshape the FY21 budget, we are planning for a variety of financial scenarios. Part of this process includes the implementation of short-term measures that will allow us to maintain fiscal stability now and in the coming year.

体育投注We have demonstrated the capability and willingness to adapt to changing circumstances with creativity, passion, and purpose. And, while we do not have all of the answers to the evolving questions and uncertainties of this dynamic period, my hope is that we can continue to bring the same spirit of cooperation and collaboration to our work that has guided us through this time.

You have my heartfelt appreciation for your continuing commitment to our mission, to our students, and to each other.

Kind regards,

Gerard J. Rooney, Ph.D.
President

Campus Update from President Rooney: 4/2/2020

April 2, 2020

体育投注Dear Colleagues,

I hope this note finds you and your families well and staying safe.

体育投注Your unwavering support and generous cooperation in our transition to online learning has enabled us to continue to provide our students with the best educational experience possible in the midst of the changing environment that we are facing. Your flexibility, commitment, and focus have been essential to this success. The spirit of community and caring that you have collectively demonstrated is the hallmark of the Fisher experience, and I am very proud of all that we have achieved during this time and offer you my sincere thanks.

As we continue to experience the COVID-19 pandemic and further understand its impacts, I write to update you on several topics. While much has been accomplished, there is still work to be done. I recognize that there may be questions that remain unanswered at this time, as well as frequent developments that cause us to adjust quickly. Throughout it all, know that I remain committed to sharing information and decision timeframes as we know them.

Continuity of Instruction and Student Support

体育投注There are many indications that our continuity of instruction plan is progressing well as we move through our second week of online learning. The additional training sessions have been well attended, and we have heard reports across all Schools that faculty are settling into their new mode of teaching. Faculty, together with staff from the Division of Student Affairs and academic advisors in the Center for Career and Academic Planning (CCAP), have been working with students to ensure that they are successfully managing their online coursework and new learning environment.

In addition, there are also positive signs that the everyday activities our current undergraduate students should be engaging in at this point in the semester are still taking place. Approximately 1,000 continuing students have submitted housing applications, a higher total than we saw at this time last year, and room selection is proceeding. The course registration process, which began earlier this week, is progressing well, and students are engaging in other advising-related activities including career advising. CCAP advisors are offering virtual sessions that provide the same on-campus “walk-in” scenario for students, and Career Services reports that activity in Handshake remains steady - with nearly 70% of students actively using the career readiness and job search platform every week. Interest in opportunities to be an Orientation team member and peer mentor is strong - we have received twice as many applications as there are positions, and those interviews are underway as planned.

Finally, and in response to the cancellation of the Career Fair, our Career Services team is working with employers to set up virtual meetings with students in the midst of their job and internship search.

Work-From-Home Period Update

The continuing safety of all members of the St. John Fisher College community is of paramount importance, and in response to the recent Federal guidance on social distancing, we will continue our work-from-home period through April 30. As we have done since March 23, pay will continue as normal and employees will not be asked to use paid absence or vacation days. We will reevaluate the work-from-home period by April 24, taking into consideration the latest guidance that is available at that time.

Recruitment Update

The new student enrollment process also continues at both the undergraduate and graduate levels. First-year and transfer student enrollment deposits are consistent with the average of the last several years and recruitment activities have been modified to meet the needs of a virtual environment. Marketing efforts have been enhanced and extended to enable us to reach our prospective first-year, transfer and graduate students in an efficient and impactful way. I am grateful to all who have offered to assist in reaching out to our accepted students and their families during this crucial time in their decision-making process. In recognition of the extraordinary circumstances that our prospective students are facing, we have extended the enrollment deposit deadline from May 1 to June 1.

Summer Courses

Given the uncertainty of when we will be able to resume campus operations, we have made the decision to offer all summer semester courses in an online format. We will be working with the deans and faculty in the coming weeks to transition as many of our summer on-ground courses to online as possible.

Budget Update

体育投注In terms of the current fiscal year budget (FY20), the pandemic has already had a financial impact. In the best interests of our students and families, earlier this week we announced to them that we would provide a prorated refund or credit for College-owned housing and meal plans from March 13, 2020 (a 47 percent refund). Additionally, we have lowered our expectations for gifts, auxiliary enterprises, and revenue from all other sources. Combined, these decisions result in a revenue reduction of nearly $3.6 million.

In order to align expenditures to our revised revenue projections, we have implemented several cost control measures. To the greatest extent possible, we plan to reduce or eliminate all non-salary related spending through the end of the fiscal year. Moving forward, any new expenditures will be focused on the continued support of online instruction and essential expenses that support the continuity of business operations. We have also paused all non-mission-critical hiring for the remainder of the fiscal year.

体育投注Finally, we will limit capital expenditures to those that support the transition to and continuation of online instruction and the work-from-home environment.

Our budgeting discipline, which includes a contingency provision each year, will help us to address the extraordinary expenses and/or revenue reductions that we have incurred to this point in FY20 as a result of the pandemic.

体育投注It is important for all of us to realize that in this period of significant uncertainty, the College will continue to monitor enrollments, revenue, and expenses and plan for a variety of scenarios in response to the impacts of the pandemic. The Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees will meet on Monday, April 6, at which time we will continue to update the Trustees on our transition to online learning, the impacts of COVID-19 on the FY20 budget, and begin discussion of a revised budget forecast for FY21.

Fisher in the Community

I know that so many of you are helping in myriad ways in our community, and I assure you that the College is continuing to represent the spirit of our students, faculty, and staff by doing the same. Fisher has provided meals to partner organizations in need, and the Wegmans School of Nursing, Wegmans School of Pharmacy, biology, and chemistry departments have donated masks, gowns, and gloves used in our Glover-Crask Simulation Center and in our pharmacy and science laboratories.

体育投注In addition, pharmacy and nursing faculty and students who are in Monroe County’s Medical Reserve Corps have been activated, and are working with the county to check on patients in quarantine and answering patient questions in the call center. Faculty from the Wegmans School of Nursing have joined our local health care workforce, reporting to hospitals for additional hours of clinical practice, and the School has provided thermometers for screenings to the Brighton Fire Department. Pharmacy faculty have worked in our labs to produce hand sanitizer by request. We are working with the United Way to provide resources and support to community-based organizations that serve vulnerable populations including those who suffer from chronic mental illness, those with intellectual and developmental disabilities, and those recovering from alcohol and substance abuse. And finally, we are partnering with Rochester Regional Health to provide private rooms in Murray Hall for use by their health care professionals who are concerned about returning home and potentially putting vulnerable family members at risk.

体育投注We continue to identify ways we can be of assistance in meeting the extraordinary needs that have resulted from COVID-19. I am so proud of the way our campus community has rallied to do what it has always done best, serve our larger community.

I know that this pandemic has touched each of us. As we all continue to adjust to the new realities of working at home, the many new and innovative ways we are accomplishing the essential work of the College, and caring for the health and well-being of our families, I am sincerely grateful to each of you for your continuing dedication to our students and our mission.

Finally, please know that my “door” always remains open to you. If there are concerns, questions, or ideas that you may have, please do not hesitate to contact me directly. I will close as I began, with the continuing hope that you and your families remain healthy and safe. You have my best wishes and my sincere gratitude.

Kind regards,

Gerard J. Rooney, Ph.D.
President

2020 Commencement Ceremony Message from President Rooney

March 27, 2020

Dear Members of the Campus Community,

体育投注I write today with the difficult news that we have made the decision to postpone Commencement. We have made this decision in the best interest of the health and safety of our campus community, and that of our graduates’ families and friends.

In a special message sent to the Class of 2020 earlier today, I made a commitment to the class that Fisher will celebrate their individual achievements and collective successes at a time when it is safe for us to do so.

I share in the disappointment of this news, not just with our soon-to-be graduates and their families, but also with all members of the campus community who look forward to seeing our students experience the distinction of receiving their diplomas.

体育投注As I told them in my message, I am proud of the way our students have responded to these unexpected circumstances and am grateful for their understanding and positive spirit. The Class of 2020 will remain a special one to us when we look back at this unprecedented time in our history.

My thanks to all who have played a role in Commencement planning to this point. I look forward to being able to celebrate our newest graduates soon.

体育投注Kind regards,

Gerard J. Rooney, Ph.D.
President
(585) 385-8068

ERT Coronavirus Update: 3/25/20

March 25, 2020

We have received some questions following yesterday’s announcement regarding the first positive case of coronavirus for one of our students. While we understand the heightened level of concern, we must balance the need to protect the student’s privacy with the appropriate sharing of actionable information.

Given the information we have, the College has notified those who may have been in contact with the student on March 12. Please note, we cannot confirm all of the campus spaces where the student may have been, nor all of the individuals with whom the student may have been in contact with – either on- or off-campus. Therefore, even though this is our first positive case, we should all continue to practice the guidelines being given to us by the  and the . These are the surest ways for all of us to be as safe as possible.

Should we learn of any additional confirmed cases among members of our campus community in the next two weeks, we will implement the same process and notify individuals who we are able to identify who may be at risk.
体育投注To reiterate Dr. Rooney’s message from yesterday, as COVID-19 community transmissions continue to spread, we must recognize that we are all at risk to exposure. Please remember to be vigilant and follow all guidelines offered for our collective safety. Per the CDC and the Monroe County Health Department, if you think you have been exposed and you develop a fever and symptoms (dry cough, difficulty breathing, generalized aches and pains), call your health care provider immediately for medical advice.

Coronavirus Update from President Gerard J. Rooney: 3/24/2020

March 24, 2020

Dear Members of the Fisher Community,

Earlier today, we learned that a St. John Fisher College student has tested positive for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). We have been in touch with the student, who is doing well and remains quarantined at home (Downstate New York), to share our community’s well wishes for a full recovery. In addition, we have notified the Monroe County Department of Public Health regarding this development.

体育投注As COVID-19 community transmissions continue to spread, all communities will be impacted. This impact is closer to home for us since it involves one of our own. We will continue to partner with the Health Department to provide information and necessary updates to the campus.

体育投注The College has taken many steps and precautionary measures to put the health of our campus community first. Despite these efforts, we recognize that all of us may be at risk to exposure. Please remember to be vigilant and follow all guidelines offered for our collective safety.

体育投注Per guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and the Monroe County Health Department if you think you have been exposed and you develop a fever and symptoms (dry cough, difficulty breathing, generalized aches and pains), call your health care provider immediately for medical advice.

I want to remind you to stay smart, stay home, and practice safe social distancing. Please keep our student and all of our community in your thoughts and prayers at this time. I am thinking of you and your families, and wish you the best. Once again, I appreciate the cooperation and patience of all as we continue to navigate this together.

体育投注Kind regards,

Gerard J. Rooney
President

ERT Coronavirus Update: 3/19/20

March 19, 2020

Thank you, once again, for your patience and understanding as we all transition to working and learning remotely. The entire campus community has come together to support each other during this time of uncertainty, and it is much appreciated by all.

We wanted to provide you with some updates and tips as we head into next week.

Health and Wellness Center

The Health and Wellness Center has suspended the delivery of student medications to the campus. Any remaining medications held at the center were mailed out to students' home address on Tuesday, March 17. Students who were utilizing Wegmans Fairport Road pharmacy for their prescriptions have been directed to contact the pharmacy directly to arrange for a transfer back to their home pharmacy. Fisher's counseling team is continuing to reach out to students receiving services via email.

体育投注Finally, the Center continues to post resources and information via @fisherhealth on Instagram and Twitter.

New Resource in Blackboard

A "Transitioning to Online Learning: Student Resources" course is now available to all students and faculty when you enter Blackboard. Useful information about the technological tools, study skills, and online course etiquette are posted to aid your transition to a virtual environment. We encourage you to review these resources prior to the start of online instruction on Monday, March 23.

Health Plan Information

St. John Fisher College is implementing changes to our health plan to assure those enrolled in our plan have access to 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) diagnostic testing. While the NYS health insurance mandates do not apply to our self-insured health plan, the College is implementing them to help maintain the health of our employees during this difficult time.

Effective immediately, all College health plans (EPO, Hybrid, and High Deductible plans) will implement the following benefit changes, which will remain in effect until further notice:

  • Coverage of medically necessary diagnostic tests that are consistent with CDC guidance related to COVID-19 at no cost share to the member.
  • Prior authorizations will be waived for diagnostic tests and for covered services that are medically necessary and consistent with CDC guidance for members diagnosed with COVID-19.
  • Members will have coverage with no out-of-pocket expense to them, for in-network provider office visits, in-network urgent care visits and emergency room visits resulting in testing for COVID-19. If an in-network provider is not available, the Health Plan will cover testing at an out-of-network provider with no out-of-pocket expense to the member.
  • Members enrolled in the high deductible health plan (HDHP) will not be responsible for copayments, coinsurance and deductibles for 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)-related testing even if the deductible has not been met. This also means members enrolled in the HDHP may continue to contribute to the health savings account (HSA).
  • During the state of emergency, all telemedicine visits will be covered in full. Members will have no cost share.

Payroll

We have developed new payroll guidelines and pay codes.

Campus Security

体育投注As a reminder, per federal and state recommendations, all have been asked to work and learn remotely. All buildings are being secured and access to campus is restricted. Fisher security officers will be actively monitoring campus and will approach and ID anyone who does come to campus.

Support and Tips for Monday

3 tips for faculty and students as we transition courses online:
  1. STICK WITH THE BASICS. Faculty have been provided with online technology training sessions as described on the Faculty Resources page. They provide basic capabilities for faculty who are instructing online for the first time. Instructors have been asked to keep things simple and to focus on the essential skills for online course delivery, which include posting course materials, facilitating online discussions and collecting and grading student assignments. Students will be better served in the current environment by providing clear instructions, well organized course materials, and prompt feedback to any questions and concerns they have.
  2. PATIENCE AND EMPATHY for yourself and each other. During this unprecedented time, the first point of business in classes next week should be focused on our collective health and wellness during this stressful situation and not the next chapter we have to cover or the upcoming exam. While the academic experience will continue, we all have to accept that it will not continue in the exact way we had planned at the start of the semester. The message we want to send as classes resume next week is that faculty and College support staff will work with students through whatever obstacles they may be facing at this time to help them complete their coursework.
  3. TECHNOLOGICAL EXPECTATIONS. While we have many great technology platforms to support high quality online learning experience, each and every one of them is now being used by a growing number of K12 students, colleges, and universities across the country. We have been in close contact with all of our vendors to ensure we have scaled our infrastructure to support the additional usage that we expect to see in the coming weeks. However, we realize that these technology platforms will be tested in a way they have never been tested before and may have performance issues that are beyond our control. Faculty are encouraged to consider course design strategies that do not rely solely on the most intensive technological infrastructure, like video, and to create backup plans in case technology performance becomes an issue.

体育投注As there are more updates to share regarding the coronavirus impact, we will so on Thursdays, or more frequently as needed, from Fisher Alert. Classes will resume online on Monday, March 23, and we look forward to having everyone back together again – even if it's virtually.

体育投注Stay healthy and be well.

ERT Coronavirus Update: 3/16/20

March 16, 2020 

In light of the most recent announcements by the White House and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) around social gathering recommendations, we have made the decision to continue with online instruction through the end of the semester, beginning Monday, March 23.

  • With this change, the course withdrawal deadline has been moved to Friday, April 3.
  • Course registration for fall will begin as scheduled on Monday, March 30.
  • Advising resources will be forthcoming from the provost.

Residential Life

体育投注The Office of Residential Life will provide further instructions directly to resident students by email today regarding how and when to pick up remaining belongings and check out.

体育投注We are working on policies to issue refunds and/or credits for room and board charges and we will share those details with students and families as soon as they become available.

Commencement

We will provide an update about Commencement no later than Friday, April 3.

Work From Home Policy Reminder

体育投注All faculty and staff are approaching this week as a week of transition and as a preparatory week for a work from home period beginning Monday, March 23 through Friday, April 3. Supervisors will be in touch with employees whose on-campus presence is required.

During this timeframe, pay will continue as normal and employees will not be asked to use paid absence or vacation days. Information from the Office of Human Resources regarding timesheets, etc. is forthcoming.

Campus Services Update

For updates from Lavery Library, Athletic Center, the Health and Wellness Center, tutoring, and other campus services, visit the Coronavirus FAQ section for this information.

Community Mitigation: Do Your Part

体育投注As we are seeing community spread, we know our students are active in the community at a variety of organizations, nursing homes, etc. If you are a student who is concerned that you may have been at a site that may have had exposure to the coronavirus, we encourage you to call the Monroe County Department of Health to report your activity and potential symptoms at (585) 753-5555. You can also continue to refer to the for the most recent developments.

Monitoring Campus News, Announcements, Emails

体育投注During this time, it is imperative that you watch your Fisher email for further direction and updates.

Pending any additional breaking updates, we will work to provide the campus with weekly updates every Thursday moving forward. Thank you for your continuing cooperation, patience, and understanding as we work together to keep our community healthy and safe. For the most recent information, refer to this page.

ERT Coronavirus Update: 3/15/20

March 15, 2020

体育投注As you are likely aware, Monroe County Executive Adam Bello declared a county-wide state of emergency this morning and subsequently closed all K-12 schools in Monroe County. The Steering Committee of the College’s Emergency Response Team (ERT) met with members of the administration shortly thereafter to continue to evaluate our response and plan next steps.

Our goal is to do our part to mitigate community transmission. With this in mind, all faculty and staff should approach this week as a week of transition and as a preparatory week for a work from home period beginning Monday, March 23 through Friday, April 3, at which point we will reevaluate this plan. The goal will be to prepare people for this period as soon as possible. If your childcare has been impacted by the county-wide school closure or other reason, please be in touch with your individual supervisor/department chair. In addition, we are asking all employees to be sure their contact information is updated in , under the Personal Information section. We want to reassure you - pay will continue as normal and employees will not be asked to use paid absence or vacation days.

By way of update, almost all of our residential students have vacated the residence halls and returned home. Today, 90 students remain, the majority of whom are resident assistants who we have asked to stay until all other students are able to leave. Earlier, we provided a bus to 26 students to return home to the New York City area. Residence halls will close at 6 p.m. tonight; however, we will have 23 students still with us on campus who had extenuating circumstances. To clarify, the dining hall will provide dinner for students who remain on campus, and Cyber Cafe will operate using modified hours of Monday-Friday from 8 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.

体育投注Late last week, with the increased number of global level 3 travel alerts issued by the CDC, the American Institute of Foreign Study (AIFS), one of our global education partners, suspended all European programs immediately and began the process of bringing students home. We continue to be in communication with those students and their families.

Finally, we have had some questions about the Emergency Response Team. In this instance, the ERT Steering Committee includes Dr. Matha Thornton, vice president for student affairs and dean of students; Dr. Eileen Lynd-Balta, associate provost; Dr. Dianne Cooney Miner, dean of the Wegmans School of Nursing; Dave DiCaro, director of safety and security; and Kate Torok, director of marketing and communications. For additional information about the roles and responsibilities of the ERT, you review the Emergency Response Team Handbook.

Any and all updates regarding College operations will be communicated to you directly from the ERT (fisheralert@pilates-rx.com体育投注) or the Office of the President.

体育投注We want to acknowledge that you - our faculty and staff - are the College's greatest asset. We recognize that your first priority is your health and the health of your family, and we assure you that we will take care of our community. We appreciate the many ways in which everyone has come together to make plans to continue to deliver a Fisher education to our students during this dynamic and rapidly changing situation.

Thank you for your continuing cooperation, patience, and understanding as we work together to keep our community healthy and safe.

ERT Coronavirus Update: 3/13/20

March 13, 2020

体育投注Although next week is being used as a time of transition for the entire College, Fisher remains open with modified procedures.

In an effort to mitigate community transmission of the coronavirus, beginning Monday, March 16, all faculty and staff will need to use their cards to swipe into all buildings. If you don’t have swipe access, or if you are not sure, please visit or call the Office of Safety and Security (x. 8025) and they can help you.

Below is an update on campus service modifications. Students will receive updates about Fisher Dining, Center for Career and Academic Planning, Writing and Tutoring Center, Athletic Center, and Lavery Library services.

Lavery Library

Lavery Library will hold regular hours through Saturday at 6 p.m. After that time, faculty and staff can access the library Monday - Friday from 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m., but will need their ID card for swipe access. Consultation will be made available by appointment. Other items of note:

  • Books - Library staff will renew books until they can be returned.
  • Remote support for Faculty and Students - Information can be found on the website.
  • Course Reserves - Let the library staff know what you need and they will do their best to digitize those items. Fair Use/Copyright has been greatly expanded during the emergency.

Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Athletic Center

The Ralph C. Wilson, Jr. Athletic Center will operate with the following modified schedule:

  • Monday through Thursday: 6 a.m. – 10 p.m.
  • Friday: 6 a.m. – 8 p.m.
  • Saturday and Sunday: 8 a.m. – 8 p.m.

Writing and Tutoring Center

Tutoring will take place online rather than in-person. Students will still be able to request assistance using the "raise a hand" function in FisherLink, which will connect them with a tutor and a decision will be made as to what the best connection will be (ie. phone, skype, email).

Center for Career and Academic Planning (CCAP)

For Friday, March 13, CCAP has opened up appointment calendars on FisherLink to see as many students as possible before leaving campus. After March 13, students can still make appointments through FisherLink that will be held by email, phone, or skype.

Accessibility Services will be available on Friday, March 13. After March 13, students can contact Joy Breeden through email (jbreeden@pilates-rx.com体育投注) or phone (585) 385-7272 for support questions as they continue their studies online.

Students seeking help with résumés, cover letters, job/internship search, interview prep and other topics directly related to career readiness can make appointments via FisherLink, or they can directly email ccap@pilates-rx.com to ask for help from Tracy Sullivan, Jamie Canfield, or Julia Overton-Healy. Support will be provided by phone, email, and skype. Questions regarding Career Accelerator Awards should be directed to Julia Overton-Healy at joverton-healy@pilates-rx.com.

Fisher Dining

The Ward-Haffey Dining Hall will not be open after Sunday, but the Cyber Café will remain open, Monday – Friday, 8 a.m. – 2:30 p.m.

Social Distancing Policy

The College has adopted a social distancing policy, outlined below:

  • Minimize the need for group meetings;
  • In person group meetings should be no larger than 25. Recommend using ZOOM;
  • Hold in-person group meetings in large venues to allow 3-foot spacing between people.

Faculty Support

体育投注Don't forget to visit the Faculty Resources page on the website. More information is forthcoming about additional training that will be made available.

Finally, as a reminder, if you have not yet received a flu shot, you are encouraged to do so. If you are sick, please stay home.

Thank you for your continued patience and understanding during this time of temporary transition.


Additional Resources

体育投注To stay up-to-date on the most current information, visit:

  • New York State Department of Health Hotline: (888) 364-3065