Southern University announced its revised fall 2020 schedule today, with a planned full semester of in-person instruction starting on Monday, Aug. 17.
Students will complete the semester and all semester exams by Tuesday, Nov. 24, before leaving for Thanksgiving break. This is two weeks earlier than originally scheduled.
The university also announced that it plans to hold Winter Commencement on Saturday, Nov. 21, rather than the original date in December. Details on the Commencement exercises will be announced at a later date. As a reminder, students who participated in the virtual commencement exercises for this past Spring are also eligible to participate in the Winter Commencement exercises.
“We cannot wait to have our students back on campus for face-to-face courses this Fall!” said Dr. April White-Pugh, university provost. “We know that this semester will look a little different, but we are working hard to put measures in place to ensure the safety of our students, faculty and staff when they return.”
The university will forego the Labor Day holiday, previously scheduled for Sept. 7 and fall break, previously scheduled for Oct. 15 and 16. The last day of exams will be November 24.
“Our goal with this revised schedule is to allow for students to complete a full semester of in-class instruction before the Thanksgiving break. Our hope is to mitigate the risks associated with an anticipated late-fall resurgence of the Covid-19 virus by not having students to return to campus after potentially traveling home for the Thanksgiving break.”
said Dr. Todd Voss, university president. “We realize there is significant uncertainty out there, but one thing is for certain – our priority for reopening this fall is thinking safety first for our students, faculty and staff. We are doing everything we can to ensure safety by sanitizing the entire campus with a hospital-grade sanitizer to ensure that surfaces and learning spaces are safe. The change in our schedule is just another mechanism that we are putting in place to minimize risk,” Voss said.
The University has already resumed onsite individual admissions appointments and campus tours.
“Our faculty and staff have done a tremendous job of adjusting to a fully online environment; however, we are now beginning to slowly transition back to resuming on-campus and in-person admissions appointments and campus tours.” said Dr. Brian Swords, vice president for enrollment management. “It has been great to get back to in-person admissions appointments and tours. The students have been excited to come to campus, and they have done an outstanding job of following the safety protocols that have been put in place.”
“We have been blessed by the tremendous amount of work that our faculty, staff and administration have done in planning for a safe return this fall, and for the meticulous and attentive way they went about planning for the Fall semester,” Voss said.
The university is also developing contingency plans should federal or state guidelines related to the pandemic change.
“While we are planning on a full semester of face-to-face instruction, it’s going to be important that our plans remain fluid should things go in a different direction,” said Voss.
“Our priority is the safety of our students and employees and we will be ready to transition almost seamlessly according to federal and state mandates.”
Southern Wesleyan University is a Christ-centered, student-focused, faith-filled community that offers inventive learning experiences. The university endeavors to prepare its students to be dedicated scholars and servant-leaders who impact the world for Christ. For details about degree programs, go online to swu.edu.