Our Rutgers–New Brunswick Community
March 19, 2020
Dear Members of our Rutgers–New Brunswick Community:
President Barchi announced on Tuesday the difficult decision to suspend most in-person instruction for the remainder of the spring semester in response to guidance from the CDC and government officials. As we navigate these unprecedented times, we must take actions like these to protect the health of our entire community.
The spring semester is one of the most exciting times, and our hearts are heavy knowing that the vibrancy that comes with warmer weather on campus will not be felt this year. We also understand the disappointment that comes with the suspension of commencement ceremonies, which are the culmination of our students’ years of study, hard work and dedication to their fields. Commencement is also a moment of tremendous pride for our faculty and staff who have supported and fostered these accomplishments. Please know that the University is considering alternative options for commencement, and we will share these plans as soon as possible.
There is no doubt that we are in the midst of a disruptive time that provokes uncertainty, particularly for students who will be receiving remote instructions beginning Monday. To help address some of these concerns, Provost Moghe will be sending academic guidelines to students by tomorrow. While we expect continued uncertainty in the days ahead, please know that we remain committed to ensuring that our students complete their academic requirements for the semester and that they feel well supported; that years-long research continues; and that essential functions of the university continue to operate. As we work to adjust our processes and finalize plans in response to these new challenges, we will share information regarding logistical details as soon as they are available.
In the meantime, we remain extremely grateful to our faculty who have quickly shifted their courses to remote instruction to accommodate these unprecedented times. All faculty have diligently identified various approaches that best address their class learning objectives, and the institution has been working actively during the spring break to make the transition a smooth one. We recognize the challenges ahead and acknowledge that there may be disruptions in the transmission or reception of remote instruction. We will do our best to resolve these issues and support you, our faculty and students, the coming weeks.
Though these are challenging days, we have abiding faith that our university—with its more than 250 years of history during some of the world’s most turbulent times—will persevere in support of our mission and values. While our lives have been upended this semester, we stand together with all of you in confidence that brighter days are ahead.
We wish you and yours the best of health.
Christopher J. Molloy, Ph.D.
Chancellor, Rutgers University–New Brunswick