April 12 Message to Faculty/Staff: Your Generosity to Our Students

To Our Faculty and Staff:

Yet again, you have demonstrated extraordinary compassion for our students. After we sent Friday’s email about parking credits—and then corrected a form glitch—30 of you contributed to the Student Emergency Fund within 20 minutes.

Then, within the first four hours, 321 of you had given some or all of your parking credit money to our students. As of this writing, the figure is 383, totaling $36,994.

Even while dealing with all of the challenges of remote learning—including working from home with, in many cases, other family members needing attention—you responded right away to this request.

I am full of awe and appreciation—as are our students.

Below are a handful updates and reminders as we approach another week:

University Hospitals (UH) and Campus Buildings: Last week, we opened Kusch, one of our south side residence halls, for UH health providers’ use. This week, we will continue working with the hospital and Ohio National Guard in planning for the possibility that our Veale Convocation Recreation and Athletic Center would be used to house overflow UH patients. The hospital first intends to use its own buildings for this purpose, but out of an abundance of caution, the state is assisting in preparing Veale to serve as an additional option.

Cleveland Clinic and the Health Education Campus (HEC): With the university’s support, Cleveland Clinic began transitioning the HEC to serve as a “surge hospital” late last month. I am deeply grateful to those then still there for appreciating the safety imperative of no longer using the space as of April 3. Late last week, the hospital released an eight-and-a-half minute video detailing the HEC’s transition; for those short on time, you can see before and “in-process” images of the atrium between 6:16 and 6:19. Fair warning, the difference is startling; please remember that the hospital has provided full assurances the space will be fully restored (and disinfected) after this crisis.

Seeking Volunteers: The State of Ohio has provided Cuyahoga County thousands of face shields for hospitals that need them. Before distribution, though, the shields and headbands have to be put together, so the county is asking area organizations for help. Assembly is a simple, three-step process. If you can use a screwdriver, your assistance would be invaluable—and we will even provide the tools. Please complete this form if you are willing to help starting mid-week and through until next Wednesday (April 22).

Additional Pay and Credits: Late last month, we notified staff who must work on campus that we would provide additional support during this crisis. Because we have received questions, I want to clarify that these changes will be reflected in the checks issued at the end of this month. That same timing applies to parking credits.

Summer Student Housing: Particularly concerned for our international students, some faculty have inquired about the availability of summer housing for those unable to return home. We first needed to assess whether we would have adequate capacity to house students in accordance with the distancing practices adopted in response to this pandemic (e.g. only one student per unit, and few students on a floor). I am now pleased to report that we are confident we will be able to provide those accommodations, and are finalizing details required for students to be able to register.

Wellness: Human Resources reports that many are making full use of the COVID-19-related wellness resources page and note that several ongoing wellness programs—such as stress management—continue online. You can find more information on the wellness website.

Again, I am grateful for your generosity to our students. I also thank you also for everything you are doing for Case Western Reserve during these challenging circumstances.

Please take good care of yourselves.

Barbara R. Snyder