From the Director: COVID-19 Response

Learn what the Hubbard School is doing during the health crisis.

To the Hubbard School community:

I know we have alumni, donors, students and friends all over the world, from South Korea and Australia to Canada and the U.K. I write with the hope that all of you are healthy and safe. This is an unprecedented time; there has already been so much pain, suffering, and disruption due to the global COVID-19 pandemic. Now, perhaps more than ever, we need to connect with each other to share stories and learn from one another.

I wanted to take a moment to inform you about our actions during this health crisis. Though the University and the School remain open, we have moved to virtual classrooms and operations. Leaders are monitoring the situation closely, and you can find updates on the Safe Campus website.

Here’s what we’re doing at the Hubbard School:

  • Telecommuting. All faculty and staff are working from home. We are well equipped to meet and teach remotely. 
  • Moving classes online. Our instructors (with the help of our staff) spent many hours building their classes to work virtually for students. Online-only instruction will begin on Wednesday, March 18. We had already planned for several summer classes to be offered online during 2019 and summer 2020. Many instructors of our largest classes had received online training; for those who didn’t, the College of Liberal Arts and School offered training during the university’s spring break.
  • Canceling events. Spring is a busy event time for the Hubbard School. Based on the recommendation of the Minnesota Department of Health, the Governor, and the University, we’ve canceled or rescheduled a majority of our events, including our annual Spring Showcase. We are also sad that graduation has been cancelled. Please know we plan to make alternative arrangements to honor our graduating students.
  • Moving events online. The second annual Northern Exposure event will continue on virtually. If you’re a visual journalist, think about joining us online on April 4 (for free!). 
  • Maintaining student support and office hours. Our students are our top priority. Our student services office, technical support staff, and our instructors will maintain virtual office hours each week so students will never feel alone during this time of uncertainty. 
  • Suspending travel. All University-funded or business-related travel has been suspended until further notice. 

The University and President Gabel, as well as the College of Liberal Arts and Dean John Coleman, have been forthright with information on a near-daily basis. We are #UMNProud of the communication from the University and CLA. We are here at the Hubbard School to serve others through education, research, and outreach; the faculty and staff are committed to treating our students and each other with care and compassion during this public health crisis. 

For those interested in helping support students during this time, CLA Dean John Coleman suggests supporting the CLA Student Emergency Support Fund, which helps students with emergency needs such as temporary housing, space to self-quarantine, food supplies, and other essentials. The financial challenges created by the pandemic are exactly the kind that can derail a student’s education and prevent a return to school and graduation. The CLA Student Emergency Support Fund helps keep students on track.

We recognize how privileged we are to provide flexibility to our employees and our students. We are also profoundly grateful to our alumni and friends. We have the resources we believe we will need to help all of our students, faculty, and staff stay well and continue to do their best work. 

We also extend our gratitude to those who are on the frontlines to help others in this crisis - those in medical and other healing professions, journalists who continue to report on events of the day, and our first responders who keep us safe and secure.

We are in uncertain times, but we are taking the necessary precautions, while also preparing for any future challenges. We wish the best to our community; take care of yourselves and please reach out with any questions. 

Warm regards,
Director Elisia Cohen 

Elisia Cohen