Promised Updates to Previous COVID-19 Email

Promised Updates to Previous COVID-19 Email

March 19, 2020

Dear Truman Community:

As we work together to understand our new and evolving reality, we are challenged to exhibit patience and grace in the midst of uncertainty and a rapidly changing landscape.  Anxiety, frustration and disappointment about what could have been (had the pandemic not happened), what is (the current reality), and what is to be (unknown) have put everyone on edge.  Our community is so fortunate that even in the face of their own challenges, wonderful faculty, staff, and students have embraced the true meaning of community and have reached out to help others overcome their challenges.  For example, Student Government is working to purchase packing materials to make the move-out process a bit easier for their fellow students.

Speaking of the move-out process, as promised in the March 16 email, we have details to share about the following (please go to for full details, related FAQs, tips for supporting learning and working remotely, and to initiate required processes):

  1. Student check-in survey – To check in with our students and determine what assistance they need; all students are asked to complete this brief survey.
  2. Students returning to campus – For the health and safety of our community, students should not return to their residence hall rooms to live for the remainder of the spring semester unless they have no other viable living arrangements.  Arrangements have been made for students to move out of the residence halls between March 23-30.  Specific details regarding the process will be sent to all on-campus residents.  Students will receive prorated credits for housing and meals.  Specific information about the prorated credits to student accounts will be communicated at a later time.
  3. Food service – Only takeout meals will be provided beginning March 21.  Meals will be restricted to those who reside in the residence halls who have meal plans.  There will be no retail sales.
  4. Student services – All in-person student services, except for the Student Health Center, are suspended for the rest of the spring semester, as are in-person meetings with faculty and staff and the use of labs and studios.  All in-person student services that have been suspended will be offered in alternative delivery formats.
  5. Scholarship, work study, and institutional pay jobs – Students with scholarship hour obligations will retain their full scholarship funding and will not be required to fulfill any more hours this semester.  Students who have a federal work-study job will be compensated for the remainder of the semester based on the number of hours they were projected to work.  Students working for the University and receiving institutional pay who would like to continue their employment should contact their supervisors.
  6. Expanded leave options and working remotely – Policies have been updated and expanded to support employees affected by school and daycare closures; employees who are ill; healthy, quarantined employees; and employees who need to work remotely.  Information about how the Families First Coronavirus Response Act to begin April 2, 2020 impacts our leave policies will be provided by the end of March.
  7. Commencement ceremonyA decision regarding commencement will be made by March 31.  There will be no delay in the conferral of degrees, even if the commencement ceremony is postponed.

Even with all of the changes that have been made, it is important to remember that our University is open; we are not ceasing operations and we are working as hard as we can to effectively fulfill our mission.  In the coming days as we continue to respond to emerging situations, we will also be providing additional virtual resources for faculty, staff and students to support learning and physical and mental wellness.  Be sure to check for the most up-to-date information.

In times like this, it is easy to feel out of control.  While there are many things we cannot control about this pandemic, there are many decisions we can make to take control of our destiny.  As we adjust to our new reality, we must think about how we can work together to ensure Truman comes out the other side strong and resolute and ready to achieve our goals.

Be well,