University to Begin Fall Semester Remotely, Students to Return at End of August
In a message sent to students and their families this evening, Assumption University President Francesco C. Cesareo, Ph.D., announced that due to the current public health situation, the fall semester would begin remotely for the first two weeks and students will move-in to residence halls in two weeks University offices will continue to be staffed and open.
"Resuming face-to-face learning has and remains the goal of the University," shared President Cesareo. "Achieving this goal has always been contingent upon procuring ample supplies of personal protective equipment, securing testing for students, faculty and staff, the COVID-19 infection rate and public health situation."
The University has secured personal protective equipment and testing for all students, faculty and staff. However, the public health situation continues to decline.
- Infection rates in Massachusetts in general and Worcester, in particular, are increasing
- The Governor of Massachusetts has imposed new restrictions in Phase 3
- Students traveling from Rhode Island to Massachusetts must now quarantine
- The Commonwealth’s Department of Public Health’s contact tracing system, which is an important element of the testing protocol, is still being finalized
- Many colleges and universities are changing their fall plans by delaying the start of the semester or transitioning to fully remote learning
"Our guiding principle has always been the health and safety of the Assumption community, as well as our concern for the local community in which we live," added President Cesareo. "As a Catholic institution of higher learning, we have a moral responsibility to promote the health and safety of students, faculty and staff and the greater Worcester community. We also believe that all human life is sacred. That fundamental belief must be applied to our embrace of the safety protocols and our approach to the fall semester."
Classes will begin on Monday, August 17 however, the first two weeks of term 1 of the fall semester will be offered remotely. In-person classes for those in residence during term 1 and commuters who are in the Classes of 2021 and 2024 will begin on August 31 if it is safe to do so at that time. Students currently on campus will receive updated instructions for dining and campus movement prior to the end of their quarantine period. They will remain on campus. Pending the public health situation, students in residence for term 1 may be permitted to remain on campus for term 2 of the fall semester.
Students who plan to return to campus at the end of August were asked to self-quarantine for two weeks prior to their arrival. This safety protocol discourages the introduction of the virus to campus, which could cause an outbreak and require the closure of campus.
University personnel will staff a call center tonight from 5 to 9 p.m. and tomorrow from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. to answer student and parent inquiries. The number for the call center is 508-767-7700. President Cesareo will host three town hall meeting for students on Tuesday evening.