Dear TC Community:

With Governor Cuomo’s latest Executive Order going into effect at 8pm this evening, I wanted to write to you with several reminders. While there is nothing that is totally new in this communication, it offers clarification on several fronts that we hope will help as we all continue to navigate this challenging time.

First: Beginning at 8pm this evening, in compliance with the New York State regulations, no one will be allowed on campus with the exception of a very small number of individuals who have been designated as performing essential functions at this time. This means that if you are a faculty member, other employee or student, you may not return to campus until further notice. While we are discouraging anyone from coming to campus, any faculty who needs to collect essential material from their office must do so before 8 this evening.  After this evening, Provost Stephanie Rowley must approve faculty entry to TC buildings, and then, permission will be severely limited. Students who remain in the residence halls may, of course, stay there.

I want to reinforce my earlier message about our support of our residential students. Our goal – as it must be – is to ensure that there are as few students as possible in our residence halls so that we can support those students who truly do not have anywhere else to go. We are doing our best to remove all residents living in hallway-style single rooms in Whittier, where many students must share a common bathroom, while also offering to relocate any students in those rooms who need a home. No students are being asked to leave our residence halls if they have no other place to go.

Second: Classes will continue, online, beginning tomorrow. All of our faculty are being as flexible and supportive as possible for those students whose lives are disrupted, and we have heard from so many of you that maintaining progress towards your degrees is an important grounding force at a moment when so much is uncertain and unknown. The registrar’s office will be sending guidance to all students and faculty to describe how to request a pass/fail grade instead of a letter grade for all who prefer that option.

I know that these changes to our lives – and the very fact that things are constantly changing, with no promise that they will let up in the foreseeable future – is unsettling at best. We are trying to be guided in all things by the principle that we will continue to serve our mission while protecting the health of our community near and far, and I am mindful and grateful that you all are doing your very best to support these efforts as well.

President Thomas Bailey