SGU Students Encouraged to Return Home from Grenada Campus

We have been closely following the global outbreak of Coronavirus (COVID-19) and considering the implications it may have on our campus and community in Grenada

From: Office of University Communications
Sent: Wednesday, March 11, 2020 7:49:40 PM
To:
Subject: Announcement: Students Encouraged to Return Home from Grenada Campus

Dear Faculty and Staff, 

The following communication below has been sent out to all students on the True Blue Campus.   In addition, we are cancelling our April class and moving all accepted students to the August 2020 entering class.  We will be providing you with additional communications about how this will impact you soon.   

Dear Grenada Campus Students,

We have been closely following the global outbreak of Coronavirus (COVID-19) and considering the implications it may have on our campus and community in Grenada. The safety and well-being of our students, faculty and staff are paramount to us and we have been working diligently with the Ministry of Health, Grenada and our international partners to consider every contingency that will allow us to limit exposure to the disease among members of our community. With that in mind, SGU has made the decision to encourage all students on the Grenada campus to return home for at least the next four weeks.  The Grenada campus will remain open and operating and facilities will be available for those students who are not able to or choose not to leave the island.

This announcement does not apply to the third- and fourth-year School of Medicine clinical students who will continue their education in the US, UK and Canada, or fourth-year School of Veterinary Medicine students doing clinical work at affiliated institutions.  This also does not apply to students in the Global Scholars Program in the UK.

While, at this time there are no confirmed COVID-19 cases in Grenada, our goal is to make prudent decisions that reflect our commitment to your ongoing safety and that of the people of Grenada.   

We are planning to continue your classes through online, distance learning as a supplement to your current educational program and we will update you shortly about our plans.

You have likely seen other institutions around the globe implementing similar measures in recent days to limit the density of large populations on their campuses.  We believe this decision is consistent with the best practice recommendations of leading health organizations and is ultimately in the best interest of our communities.   We will re-evaluate the situation prior to April 15th based on global medical circumstances and will be in touch on the potential to return to Grenada. 

While we are asking students on campus to return home, we recognize Grenada is home to many of you and others may not have the option to travel home in the coming days.   We will continue to operate classes on campus for the students who will remain in Grenada, while supporting distance education capabilities for those who leave.  

Learn more here

What to expect:

For those of you who choose to leave the island, we plan to assist students to transition off the campus over the next seven days. Students may want to contact their airline to see if they can change their existing return ticket, as commercial flights continue to fly in and out of Grenada on a daily basis.  For those who may not have a convenient commercial flight option, SGU has contracted a series of Boeing 737 charter flights to fly students and families to major hubs, such as Miami, New York City and Toronto over the next week, at the University’s expense.  Students can then fly from those hubs to their home at their expense, perhaps using the return ticket they currently have as part of the round-trip flight they took to arrive to school.  Many airlines are relaxing change requirements in light of the global viral outbreak.    

As I noted, you may also elect to stay on campus if returning home at this time is not an option.  The campus will remain open for the remainder of the semester, and classes will continue.  Students will have the flexibility of in-class or online participation while awaiting their transportation from the campus to their respective homes.  

What we need from each student:

  • Please complete the form at www.sgu.edu/travelrequest no later than 5 pm on March 12th
  • Read through the relocation FAQs provided at www.sgu.edu/relocationfaqs
  • Read through the FAQs provided at www.sgu.edu/coronavirus
  • Consider a thoughtful plan for how to pack to return home until at least April 15th, but potentially as late as the start of the next term
  • Communicate with your family to give them context around the expected temporary move home
  • Help our community by remaining calm and collaborating to make this transition as smooth as possible 

This decision was not arrived at lightly, but our goal is to help our community navigate this challenge as safely as possible and protect members of our community while we have the flexibility to proactively manage the situation.  We understand that this transition can be challenging and are committed to doing everything we can to make it as smooth as possible for you.  

We will be providing much more detailed information tomorrow, along with the opportunity to submit your questions.

While we finalize the details related to academics, technology, and travel, we wanted to communicate with you now about our overall plan.  As additional details come together, we will post them to www.sgu.edu/coronavirus.  This page will be updated on a regular basis so please check back often.    

Please submit additional questions to questions@sgu.edu.

Sincerely,
Richard Liebowitz, MD
Vice Chancellor

 

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