Employees: Navigating 'Stay Home' at Pacific
On March 23, Oregon Gov. Kate Brown issued a new executive order (No. 20-12) requiring Oregon residents to stay home as much as possible to slow the spread of COVID-19. This order closes many types of businesses and requires institutions such as Pacific to limit operations to allow for physical distancing.
Our mission is, and always will be, the education of our students. We know that the work of all of our employees is critical to the success and support of our students. In this unprecedented time, however, we recognize that it is not critical for all of that work to take place on campus.
We are committed to the support and wellbeing of our employees. Right now, that means making sure that as many employees as possible are able to stay home, per the governor’s order, and that those who do need to work on campus are able to do so in a safe environment.
All employees who are able to work remotely must do so. Your supervisor will work with you to determine if you are required to be on campus or not. Supervisors and employees, please review the updated telework policy for guidance on expectations for remote work.
If you need technological assistance to effectively work from home — such as VPN access for internet security or the use of university equipment like computers off-site — please contact UIS for support.
To protect our employees and students, many areas of campus will be closed. Employees who need to come to campus to conduct on-site business activities or record in teaching settings, like labs, please contact your dean or director. No custodial service will be provided in closed buildings.
Residence halls, portions of the University Center, and the 24-hour study areas in the Tran Library and Hillsboro Building 2 are the only facilities that will be open to students.
Mail Services will discontinue office delivery and will operate limited pickup window options. University-wide vendor services, such as shredding and bottled water delivery, have been paused. Business Office services are available by appointment only.
All spring term courses will be delivered online starting no later than April 1 through the end of the semester. Online courses will continue through the summer term as much as possible. Faculty members must work creatively to convert traditionally hands-on learning to a model that can be delivered at a distance.
UIS and the Center for Educational Technology and Curriculum Innovation are providing resources to help faculty members transition to online teaching. The Office of Accommodations and Accessibility also has resources for faculty to provide accommodations for students in an online setting.
Faculty must also work to identify ways to measure clinical skills and to replace clinical education opportunities that may be interrupted by the pandemic response. We should collaborate with accrediting agencies to help make sure that students are able to graduate on time as much as possible.
Pacific leadership is collecting information about all active research projects to help assess whether they can be paused during this pandemic response. Most research may be considered non-essential and may be suspended at this time, in order to preserve the governor’s mandate for social distancing or to reduce the use of personal protective equipment for non-patient care purposes. In another recent executive order (No. 20-10), Gov. Brown has required us to contribute critically needed PPE to health workers on the front lines.
This unprecedented situation has been difficult on everyone. If you need mental health or spiritual support, please contact the Employee Assistance Program or University Chaplain Rev. Dr. Chuck Currie.
Human Resources also is working to provide employee wellness and social activities remotely. Watch the university calendar for new opportunities.
We count on all of our employees to continue providing students with the support they need — academically and otherwise. Housing & Residence Life staff, as well as custodial crews, continue to serve students in-person.
Other student support systems are quickly pivoting to provide care for students remotely. Read the update sent to students today.
We know that you will continue to make meaningful connections with students even if we are not together in person.
Please also be aware that we have learned some students serving in the National Guard have been called to duty. We will follow our typical practices of supporting these students during their service and welcoming them back to their studies upon their return.
On Sunday, we reported our first confirmed positive test for a Pacific employee. It is likely there will be more due to the community transmission that we are now seeing in our region. We will continue to work to connect with anyone who has direct contact with a member of the Pacific community who tests positive.
Please watch for continued communication around Pacific’s pandemic response on social media, by email, and at pacificu.edu/coronavirus.
Though we must be apart to stay safe, know that we are all still here for each other!