This story has been updated to reflect new statements from CU Boulder spokesperson Deborah Mendez-Wilson.
Beginning Monday, March 16, all in-person classes at the University of Colorado Boulder will be moved online for the remainder of the spring 2020 semester to limit the “COVID-19 risk on campus,” according to a statement released by Chancellor Philip DiStefano Wednesday morning.
The statement announced several campus actions. Primarily, beginning Monday, CU will transition to learning remotely via Canvas and Zoom. However, the campus will remain open so that students are “able to meet their educational requirements.” Campus facilities like residence halls, dining halls, libraries and rec centers will remain in operation.
Campus employees are urged to work remotely whenever possible.
While restrictions for travel have already been imposed, DiStefano announced that all university-funded travel both foreign and domestic are suspended for the time being. Education Abroad-sponsored programs to France, Spain, Japan and the Czech Republic have been suspended for the remainder of the spring semester, effective immediately. Previously, CU suspended Education Abroad programs to China, South Korea and Italy through summer 2020.
All university-sponsored events that are multi-day or have more than 150 attendees have also been suspended, effective immediately.
Future protocol for each action is yet to be released, though additional updates were promised in the coming days. The latest information can be found at colorado.edu/coronavirus.
While DiStefano acknowledges the inconvenience he said, “the risk of not acting outweighs the inconvenience of these temporary measures.”
According to CU Boulder spokesperson Deborah Mendez-Wilson, CU did not take this action due to a positive coronavirus case on campus. The university system is currently awaiting the results of the tests of two people affiliated with the university.
Mendez-Wilson said faculty are being encouraged to consult with their departments for further guidance as they prepare to transition to online teaching. She said the university will provide additional training as needed.
When asked if the university’s online server could support the roughly 36,000 students who will transition to taking classes online, Mendez-Wilson said the university is working with the Office of Information Technology to “meet all our technical needs.”
Contact CU Independent Breaking News Editor Noelle Videon at email@example.com.