UAB: no more in-person classes this semester, possible virtual graduation

UAB: no more in-person classes this semester, possible virtual graduation
(Source: {WBRC})

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (WBRC) - UAB announced its plans for Spring 2020, and it includes no more in-person, on-site classes. The plan also mentions the school may be moving to a virtual/alternative commencement.

Here is the letter emailed from UAB Wednesday:

Students, faculty and staff,

Thank you for your efforts to minimize the spread of novel coronavirus (COVID-19). In the midst of an extremely unsettling time, the Blazer community has come together to make sacrifices and support one another. Please continue to practice aggressive social distancing and good hygiene so we can “flatten the curve” and save lives.

When we announced the online/alternative instruction format March 12, it was unclear how long it would last. It is now clear that in-person instruction will not be possible for the remainder of the semester.

As part of the ongoing University of Alabama System Office planning to safeguard our campus community, UAB and our sister campuses are announcing today that there will be no more in-person/on-site classes for the duration of the spring semester. Instead of on-campus commencement ceremonies this spring, UAB will host virtual/alternative commencement ceremonies.

This is an unprecedented situation, but UAB remains committed to minimizing disruptions while keeping health and safety our top priority. Additional logistics will be communicated in the coming days, but here are details we know now:

Online and Alternative Teaching

The UAB spring semester will resume Wednesday, March 25, in an online/alternative format. All instruction will be delivered remotely using the most effective tools available. Students should work with their instructors to access materials and utilize resources, an online FAQ and guidance to help them succeed in this format. Faculty have been provided eLearning and IT resources, as well as peer guidance. Policies regarding clinical and research requirements, student-teacher programs and other specific professional programs will be formulated based on guidance from the state of Alabama and the appropriate academic departments and governing agencies.

Virtual/Alternative Commencement Ceremonies

We are deeply disappointed that our graduating Blazers will not experience a traditional commencement this spring, but we will do everything we can to recognize and celebrate your accomplishments. There are several commencement ceremonies each spring, and details of each virtual/alternative commencement will be communicated in the coming days and weeks. This announcement is being made now to best accommodate the logistics of graduating students and their families, as well as campus departments. Additional information about this and other opportunities will be provided.

Residence Halls

Now that we know on-campus instruction will not take place this semester, we can begin to make decisions and provide guidance to allow students to move out of their residence hall rooms. We are formulating a plan now to allow a systematic and safe way for students to retrieve their belongings and move out. This plan will be shared in a separate communication directly to residential students. Students, please DO NOT RETURN TO CAMPUS at this time. It remains vitally important to aggressively promote social distancing and “flatten the curve.” Students should email studenthousing@uab.edu if an extreme hardship or circumstance arises. Students are not authorized to return to campus outside of this plan, and any who show up without authorization will not be accommodated.

Now that on-campus classes will not resume this semester, a plan will be communicated in the near future regarding residential student housing fees and meal plans.

Transportation Services continues to discuss parking issues and will provide further guidance in the future.

Please stay safe and take your responsibility to “flatten the curve” seriously. Together, we can save lives. Additional information is available at www.uab.edu/coronavirus.

Copyright 2020 WBRC. All rights reserved.