Coronavirus Updates

The Coronavirus (COVID-19) situation is rapidly evolving and expanding. The college continues to closely monitor COVID-19 and is actively engaged in responding to and planning for possible scenarios. Use this website as an ongoing resource for campus updates and information related to the virus. 



Campus Updates


Monday, May 18
Update to faculty and staff: Important Update for Our Community

Dear SNC Faculty and Staff,

As I shared with you on April 30, our plan is to safely and joyfully reopen and reunite physically on campus this fall. Still, for now, these are difficult times. Summer programs have been canceled. Campus operations are slowing down in many areas and already are at a standstill in some. And we continue to keep top of mind the two primary variables that will determine our path forward: our final enrollment for the coming academic year and final decisions about the mode of academic delivery for the fall semester.

Although the college has maintained a position of financial strength, the current significant and unexpected financial challenges, if not steadily addressed, will threaten this position. As the college plans for a new budget year in a time of immense uncertainty, the president’s cabinet has developed several planning scenarios that would have varying levels of impact on the college’s finances, on our work and staffing, and on our teams and employees. While the scenarios vary significantly (to account for uncertainty), today we presented to the Board of Trustees a planning scenario, for the fiscal year 2021 that accounts for an estimated 10 percent reduction in overall revenue. Based on what we know today about federal, state, county, and public health guidelines; our goal of returning to in-person instruction in the fall; and our progress, to date, with both new and continuing student enrollment, we believe this budget is feasible and responsible.

Out of a profound responsibility to protect our future, it is time to take a few new steps. In addition to reductions in non-personnel expenses, a pause on 2021 salary increases, a freeze on hiring for most open positions unless doing so will significantly compromise essential work, and an increase in unrestricted endowment distributions, we will begin to implement temporary furloughs beginning June 1. Approximately 115 employees will be placed on temporary unpaid furlough until the college’s normal operations resume. Those employees will be notified by Friday, May 22.

Furlough guidelines have been developed to provide a framework for this process. I’m attaching here a Guidelines on Position Furloughs document, where you will find more detailed information.

Further, due to reorganization and changes in operational efficiencies, we will be eliminating several positions. Staff impacted by position elimination will also be notified by Friday, May 22. Consistent with our institutional values and our respect for personal dignity, we will be working with each impacted employee to provide support as they prepare to leave the college and seek new employment.

The cabinet continues to keep the College’s financial situation under review and may need to take further steps regarding budget, furloughs, and staffing efficiencies as they become necessary. As always, we do so mindfully, sensitively, and in alignment with our values.

Colleagues, each and every one of you, and each and every team that makes up our community is equally important to St. Norbert College. We serve as the Body of Christ in this place, as always and forever. Simultaneously, at this time, we’re sorrowfully aware that some of the decisions we make must, unavoidably, be driven by budgetary considerations. The sacrifices we’re asking from you are considerable. We recognize that truth. It’s also important to acknowledge that for the time being those sacrifices are falling in different ways across the college. For some of you, your workload continues to be considerably greater than usual, week in, week out. For others, your work is conducted in difficult, perhaps limiting, often frustrating and very stressful circumstances. For yet others, the burden is felt most strongly in a temporary or even permanent loss of employment, in a loss of your paycheck, and/or in the satisfaction that comes with going to work every day and offering your best. While the challenges might be felt unevenly from person to person and from month to month, I recognize there is nothing uneven about the overall sacrifices you are making and the heroism you are showing both now, in the short term, and for the long-term future and flourishing of our beloved St. Norbert College.

I say again, you are remarkable. I ­thank you all, from the bottom of my heart, for your continued prayers and support as we navigate an unprecedented time in the world’s history – in our own St. Norbert College’s history – and stay focused on our ever-ancient mission to serve students and our community with unwavering care, academic excellence and guided by our faith.

Sincerely,

Brian

 

 

Friday, May 15
An end of the year message from President Brian Bruess

Dear Students, Faculty and Staff of St. Norbert College,
 
A day or two ago, as I sat on the steps of Burke Hall where I once lived as a first-year student, I found myself looking back on the curious road that has brought us all to this point. Most importantly, I found myself looking forward to next fall when we can all be together again and welcome you back to campus to enjoy the connections and activities that a residential experience brings. I'm thinking of you all as we close out this semester and wanted to take a few minutes to record this personal message.

God bless you all. Stay safe, and have a wonderful summer!
 
Sincerely,
 
Brian


Thursday, May 14
Update to faculty and staff: Guidelines for Phase One of returning to work on campus remain unchanged

During the last 24 hours, the Wisconsin Supreme Court made the decision to repeal the "Safer at Home Order" put in place by Gov. Tony Evers. This decision does not change our plans for returning to work at St. Norbert College. We still plan to begin Phase One of the return to work plan on Tuesday, May 26.

The Phase One guidelines are included again for your reference below:

Remote work: Once we enter Phase One of Badger Bounce Back, those employees who can conduct their work remotely should continue to do so. For those offices that need to open on campus at this time, units should develop a plan so that only the minimum number of staff necessary will be physically working on campus, and that proper social distancing is maintained. Priority for remote work should be given to those at higher risk.

Flexible work schedules: If flexible work schedules would help in planning, they are to be encouraged. (Options might include staggering shifts, or moving to a 10-hour-per-day/four-day working week.)

Illness: No one who has a fever, cough or shortness of breath (even if symptoms are mild), or is otherwise not feeling well, or who has been recently exposed to someone who potentially has COVID-19, is allowed to come to campus. In this situation, employees should work with their supervisor and/or Human Resources to explore the options available to them. Individuals can consult with their local health department and Health Services for advice about how to safely return to work after illness and/or any contact with a suspected, probable or confirmed case of COVID-19.   

Meetings: During Phase One, meetings can continue to take place virtually, no matter where faculty and staff are physically located, and this is highly encouraged. If meetings must take place in person, proper social distancing must be maintained. No more than 10 people may be present.  

Business travel: Only business travel that is deemed essential by divisional vice presidents will be allowed during phases one and two of the Bounce Back Plan.

Masking: All employees must wear masks or cloth face coverings when they are on campus, unless they are in their personal workspace, and remain at least 6 feet apart from anyone else. (Please note that the wearing of such coverings does not preclude employees from the requirement to maintain safe social distance in the workplace.) A mask will be provided by the college for those who do not have their own. (The CDC provides a document that describes how to wear a face covering and how to make one yourself.) 

Practice good hygiene: Employees are expected to:

  • Wash hands with soap/water or use hand sanitizer, especially after touching frequently used items or surfaces.  
  • Avoid touching the face.
  • Sneeze/cough into a tissue or inside their elbow.
  • Avoid shaking hands with others.

Workplace cleanliness: Employees should disinfect frequently used items and surfaces, including items in their personal workspace.

Common areas: During Phase One, employees are asked to avoid gathering in groups of more than 10 in the various common areas across campus.

As the college moves through the phases identified in the Badger Bounce Back Plan, watch for these guidelines to be updated as circumstances warrant.

We appreciate your flexibility and your dedication to the work of the college. If you have any concerns or questions, please consult with your supervisor and/or with Human Resources.


Thursday, May 7
A message to students from the faculty

Dear students,

I hope this message finds you and your family healthy and safe as we continue to take the necessary precautions to slow the spread of COVID-19.

As final exam week approaches in this most unusual of semesters, I, along with the entire Academic Affairs Leadership Council, made up of faculty administrators and directors reporting to the Vice President for Academic Affairs, would like to offer a brief note of support, and remind you of available resources.

The faculty and staff continue to work hard to ensure that course content is delivered and learning objectives are met. We also recognize and understand the challenges some of you continue to face. We know you may be struggling with aspects of online delivery; shouldering responsibility for the care of siblings or older relatives; or working a job out of necessity. We know you are missing your community of friends, classmates, faculty and staff on campus in De Pere. Know that we speak on behalf of all campus constituencies to reciprocate that sentiment. For the graduating seniors, especially, the rescheduling or cancellation of events and traditions that celebrate your many accomplishments leaves us heartbroken.

The currently oft-mentioned statement, "We're all in this together," may sound like hyperbole, and while it is certainly difficult to recognize or maintain the spirit of community we cherish at St. Norbert, we will continue to embrace this challenge together, living communio as part of a unique but temporary virtual community of friends and scholars. We will indeed get through this together.

To that end, we want you to finish the semester strong. Approach your last assignments and presentations with care and confidence; and prepare for final exams with diligence and planning. In addition, be compassionate with others and mindful of your own well-being: take time for yourself to do things you enjoy, and stay connected with family, friends, and of course your favorite faculty and staff at SNC.

If you are feeling overwhelming anxiety, you are not alone, and Counseling & Psychological Services continues to be available to help you deal with the current challenges and uncertainty. We urge you to reach out to your professors or advisor if you are struggling in any courses. A reminder that the office of Academic Support Services are operating as normal, including teaching assistants, academic peer mentors, and tutoring services. The Library's Research Center continues to be staffed to assist you with research for assignments and projects. Virtual appointments can still be made with the Writing Center. Information Technology Services remains available to aid with technology and software. Concerns about a specific course should be directed to the divisional dean who oversees that course (see below).

In other words, if you need help, please do not hesitate to ask for it. The wish of all faculty and staff in Academic Affairs
is to help you succeed. Please reach out with any questions or concerns.

Warmly,

Dr. Cyndi Ochsner
Faculty Chair
On behalf of the Academic Affair Leadership Council

Divisional Deans:
Dr. Stephan Rupsch, Visual and Performing Arts
Dr. Dan Heiser, Schneider School of Business and Economics
Dr. Dave Bailey, Natural Sciences
Dr. John Dose, Social Sciences
Dr. Paul Johnson, Humanities


Tuesday, May 5, 2020
Guidelines for faculty and staff returning to work on campus – Phase One

Dear Faculty and Staff,

Even as we note with concern that cases of the COVID-19 virus in Brown County continue to rise, it’s important that we as a community move forward with our planning so that we’re ready for the day when Governor Evers relaxes the Safer at Home order. Representatives from across campus have been working together on a plan to facilitate our eventual return to work on campus.

As the college plans to make this transition in phases, the health and safety of our St. Norbert College community will continue to guide all decision-making. Communio is based on mutual esteem and trust, and, accordingly, everyone needs to have confidence that they will be safe at work. With that need top of mind, we are asking the campus to observe the following guidelines based on the Badger Bounce Back plan.

Remote work: Once we enter Phase One of Badger Bounce Back, those employees who can conduct their work remotely should continue to do so. For those offices that need to open on campus at this time, units should develop a plan so that only the minimum number of staff necessary will be physically working on campus, and that proper social distancing is maintained. Priority for remote work should be given to those at higher risk.

Flexible work schedules: If flexible work schedules would help in planning, they are to be encouraged. (Options might include staggering shifts, or moving to a 10-hour-per-day/four-day working week.)

Illness: No one who has a fever, cough or shortness of breath (even if symptoms are mild), or is otherwise not feeling well, or who has been recently exposed to someone who potentially has COVID-19, is allowed to come to campus. In this situation, employees should work with their supervisor and/or Human Resources to explore the options available to them. Individuals can consult with their local health department and Health Services for advice about how to safely return to work after illness and/or any contact with a suspected, probable or confirmed case of COVID-19.   

Meetings: During Phase One, meetings can continue to take place virtually, no matter where faculty and staff are physically located, and this is highly encouraged. If meetings must take place in person, proper social distancing must be maintained. No more than 10 people may be present. 

Business travel: Only business travel that is deemed essential by divisional vice presidents will be allowed during phases one and two of the Bounce Back Plan.

Masking: All employees must wear masks or cloth face coverings when they are on campus, unless they are in their personal workspace and remain at least 6 feet apart from anyone else. (Please note that the wearing of such coverings does not preclude employees from the requirement to maintain safe social distance in the workplace.) A mask will be provided by the college for those who do not have their own. (The CDC provides a document that describes how to wear a face covering and how to make one yourself.)

Practice good hygiene: Employees are expected to:

  • Wash hands with soap/water or use hand sanitizer, especially after touching frequently used items or surfaces.  
  • Avoid touching the face.
  • Sneeze/cough into a tissue or inside their elbow.
  • Avoid shaking hands with others.

Workplace cleanliness: Employees should disinfect frequently used items and surfaces as much as possible, including items in their personal workspace.

Common areas: During Phase One, employees are asked to avoid gathering in groups of more than 10 in the various common areas across campus.

As the college moves through the phases identified in the Badger Bounce Back Plan, watch for these guidelines to be updated as circumstances warrant.

We appreciate your flexibility and your dedication to the work of the college. If you have any concerns or questions, please consult with your supervisor and/or with Human Resources.

For more information about the Phase I return-to-work plan, view the frequently asked questions.


Friday, May 1, 2020
Emergency Relief Funding Available for Students

Dear Students,

We are writing to you today with some good news!

St. Norbert College received federal emergency aid from the United States government through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act to help students who are struggling with expenses related to the campus closure due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Below we’ve included more information about eligibility and the process to apply for this aid.

Who is eligible for CARES Act funding?
CARES Act funding only may be distributed to students who are eligible to file a FAFSA and who have eligibility to participate in Title IV aid programs. We are disappointed that this excludes international and DACA students. If you are an international or DACA student who is experiencing financial hardship, please contact the office of financial aid. We are working to assist you in other ways.

What expenses are eligible to be covered?
CARES Act funds only can be used to cover expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to COVID-19. Examples include:

  • Books and supplies for online courses
  • Technology needs for online course delivery (internet, data plan, etc.)
  • Unexpected medical expenses
  • Expenses related to moving home or for storage
  • Child care
  • Current shelter needs since leaving campus
  • Food

How do I apply?
Students who are eligible for CARES Act funding may submit the application for CARES Act Emergency Grant Funding, explaining how they have been financially impacted by the pandemic and their associated costs.

What is the application deadline?
All applications submitted by May 15, 2020, will be considered. Funding is limited with priority given to students demonstrating the greatest financial need. Because funding is limited, you are strongly encouraged to apply by May 15. Applications submitted after that date will be reviewed on a rolling basis until all funds are exhausted.

If you have questions about the grant or your eligibility, view the frequently asked questions. You also can contact the office of financial aid at financialaid@snc.edu or 920-403-3071.

Sincerely,

Jessica Rafeld
Director of Financial Aid

Elisha Jaeke
2019-20 SGA President

Oliver Dressel
2020 Interim SGA President


Thursday, April 30, 2020
Important College Updates

Dear SNC Community,

As I survey with deep affection our college community at the end of the semester, I am profoundly grateful for all that I see. I see students continuing to work hard, remain positive, and show impressive focus as they move to the close of this semester’s studies. I see faculty and staff rising up to unimagined challenges, showing extraordinary resilience, and demonstrating their commitment, as always, to the best possible experience for our students. I see all of you supporting one another. Behind all this I see, too, the unavoidable stress imposed by these strange circumstances and the ways these new stressors are uniquely impacting every one of you, often in complex ways. My gratitude and appreciation is boundless for each one of you, and for all you have accomplished. Your efforts, reflecting your evident love for St. Norbert College, give me hope as we continue to navigate this pandemic together and plan for a healthy future.

Financial Update, Planning for the Future, and Opening this Fall
With final exams less than two weeks away, I am pleased to report that the financial steps we have already taken will allow us to end this fiscal year in a strong position. Through careful stewardship, we are poised to finish this fiscal year, ending May 31st, balanced. This is a remarkable accomplishment given that we have issued room and board refunds; moved all courses to alternative delivery in less than one week’s time; cancelled or reconstituted all programs and events; and adeptly registered returning students while successfully recruiting new students. Our faculty and staff should be proud of their selfless response on behalf of the college, our current students and their families, and our future students. Please know I am grateful beyond words for your response, and I find myself increasingly more confident in our collective strength and with the unwavering belief we can and will successfully navigate this pandemic as a College.

For next fiscal year, the financial challenges will persist and likely worsen before it gets better, especially if the economy does not recover swiftly. And although it seems as if COVID-19 and the pandemic it has created has been a reality for a long time already, the science and experts tell us we are still at the beginning stages of this crisis and need to steel ourselves for a prolonged recovery, one that will likely include setbacks along the way. Further complicating matters for the College are the many unknowns, among them: What will our new and continuing student enrollment look like in fall? How much revenue will we lose through cancelled events and other revenue-producing operations affected by COVID-19? What trajectory will the COVID-19 virus take? How will governments attempt to manage its path? Governor Evers’ extension of the Safer At Home order (to May 26) and the Badger Bounce Back plan make it clear we need to take further steps to ensure we will emerge from this crisis in a strong position.

Let me be clear: Our plan is to safely and joyfully reopen and reunite physically as a campus this fall! Given the many uncertainties and variables, we are also building necessary contingency plans. As we review various scenarios for the upcoming year, we must be nimble and prepared for whatever lies ahead, continuing to remain unwavering in our mission while securing the College’s health and vitality, our immediate and long-term future.

Among the many steps the College is taking to preserve our financial strength and remain poised for the future include: extending through 5/31/2021 the spending restrictions already in place; significantly reducing our operating expense budget (personnel and non-personnel); freezing compensation for the year; exploring additional endowment support; continuing to evaluate all capital projects; carefully reviewing operations for additional efficiencies; and reviewing all open positions. We are well-aware that many colleges and universities are implementing furloughs and reviewing staffing levels, options that we are also examining, as painful as they are to consider.

Our Community and Our Values
My team and I want each one of you to feel assured that as we navigate this pandemic we will do whatever we can to mitigate the negative impacts on our community. We are intensely, painfully mindful of the situation of our colleagues who have found it necessary to file for unemployment due to the current unavailability of work in their on-campus roles. These kinds of challenges will continue to affect us as we balance available resources against our ongoing commitment to always be strengthening the quality and vibrancy of the student experience; to safeguard the health and safety of our community; and to ensure the institutional health of this vibrant institution, securing and strengthening it now and into the future. Our core values, our sense of community, and our commitment to the common good are top of mind for me, the cabinet, our trustees and our founding order. These are the values that pervade our community, thanks to you all. They guide our decision-making and they, once again, will see us through.

We expect to know more as the situation develops in the weeks ahead. In the meantime, we have formed groups now actively working on a plan for bringing employees and students physically back together on campus again just as soon as is prudent.

A Few Additional Updates

  • We are giving prospective students and their families one additional month to make their final decisions about coming to SNC in the fall. They now have until June 1st to make the deposit that will secure their place at SNC. The admissions team and others across campus continue to creatively engage these audiences. We know we can rely on all of you to accept requests and chances for conversations with prospective students who have questions about the SNC experience or about the opportunities available in your areas.
  • The College will benefit from federal support through the CARES Act stimulus funding. Half of those resources will be directed toward providing financial relief for students. We know our students and families are being significantly impacted by the current state of the economy and it’s essential we continue to support their needs.
  • Our colleagues in College Advancement continue their important work. The ongoing generosity of friends of the college is of vital importance to our future and we could not be more grateful for their support. To that end, please know that our annual giving day – A Day to uKnight – has been rescheduled for May 12.

A Final Word
Please know your needs are constantly on my mind. Carol and I keep you in our hearts, our thoughts, and offer prayers of thanks for all that you are doing, as well as prayers for all struggling with the current uncertainties in our world and community. You are remarkable. We, as a community, are remarkable. We journey together and know our mission, everything we stand for, will carry us forward. I have never been more confident we will emerge from this current crisis stronger than ever.

Sincerely,

Brian


Friday, April 17, 2020
On-going Gratitude

Dear Faculty and Staff,

Yesterday, in an effort to help Wisconsin successfully navigate the COVID-19 crisis, Governor Tony Evers extended the state’s Safer@Home Order until May 26. The decision has an immediate impact on the St. Norbert College community, one that I know also causes further stress for you and your families. At the same time, I am overwhelmingly convinced – based on the best science and evidence – that Gov. Evers’ decision is essential and wise as we each do our part to ensure the health of our communities and their members. Thank you for continuing to observe the guidelines.

I also know, feel, and want to acknowledge the collective stress of not knowing when we will be able to fully reopen campus. Your stress and the collective uncertainty is at the center of every decision by the president’s cabinet. As federal, state, and local guidelines emerge, we will continue to make decisions and share updates with the college community as swiftly as we can. While we are working every day to develop plans for the entire range of possibilities, please know we do expect to resume classes on campus at St. Norbert in the Fall.

As we continue to navigate the pandemic and its unprecedented ripples into every facet of life, please know that I continue to be fully inspired – in awe, actually – by how each of you is responding. There is no doubt that our institutional character and values are on fullest display when we face our biggest challenges. Every single day, my spirit and hope is lifted as I watch you rise up, lean into St. Norbert College’s core values, and work tirelessly to support our students. Together, we will emerge from this crisis stronger and more vibrant.

Please also know that Carol and I are praying for the health and safety of each of you and your families. Thank you for all the sacrifices you are making to stay safe, to care for each other, and to keep students at the center of our attention.

In gratitude,

Brian 


Friday, April 17, 2020
Campus updates for faculty/staff related to the COVID-19 outbreak

Dear Faculty and Staff,

We have continued to monitor the COVID-19 situation, taking guidance from the state and our public health partners. Yesterday, Gov. Tony Evers issued an extension of the Safer at Home order until May 26.

With this extension in mind, we have a few campus updates to share.

Extension of the Work-Away-From-Campus Arrangement
The work-away-from-campus requirement for faculty and staff, which previously was in place through Friday, April 24, has been extended through Monday, May 25, and is subject to further review if the Safer at Home order is changed at a later date. For those employees who are not able to work remotely, please contact your supervisor or Human Resources to discuss your options.

A working group has been charged with drafting guidelines for our eventual return to on-campus operations.

Compassionate Leave Policy
To date, more than 800 hours have been donated to the compassionate leave bank of hours to support colleagues who are unable to work because they are ill or caring for an immediate family member who is ill with COVID-19. We are grateful to those who have donated. If you would like to learn how you can make a donation to the leave bank or how you can request compassionate leave, view the Compassionate Leave Policy.

Commencement 2020
The 2020 Commencement ceremony has been rescheduled for Saturday, Aug. 29, 2020. More details on that rescheduled ceremony will be shared when they are available. We will mark the original Commencement date for seniors with a special mailing to the Class of 2020 of their caps, gowns and honor regalia.

SNC Day
SNC Day 2020 has been canceled. We will resume this campus-wide open house next year, on Saturday, Sept. 18, 2021.

Summer Courses
All undergraduate summer courses will be taught online. As usual, summer courses are offered at a lower cost-per-credit rate than regular-semester courses.

2020-21 Student Housing Selection
The fall student housing selection process begins Monday, April 20. Seniors will make their housing selections on Monday, and the process will conclude with sophomores making their housing selections the following week. A separate process later in the summer will focus on housing incoming first-year students.

More Than Numbers
Student retention and thriving remain top campus priorities. The first day the college changed to remote work, the MTN tri-chairs and co-chairs met and decided to suspend meetings until after Easter to allow all to focus on the immediate needs of our students and the campus. On April 20, all module teams will meet virtually to discuss ways to continue our efforts in support of student retention.

We appreciate your patience and understanding as we all continue to work in support of our students and the college under difficult circumstances.

As always, please monitor email for new information. Supervisors need to communicate proactively with staff who may not have regular access to email.


Friday, April 3, 2020
A message from campus, with news of this year’s Commencement

Dear Friends,

The weather is so beautiful, I took the chance to step into the lovely backyard of the president’s house to record this video message so that I could speak directly to each one of you. The medium of video allows me to share with you all some images of our beautiful campus as I also share a few messages – including an important update about Commencement 2020.

God bless you all, and I hope many of us can join in worship, virtually, this Sunday at Mass at Old St. Joe’s.

Sincerely,

Brian


March 27, 2020
Update on Possible Room and Board Refunds for Study Abroad Students

Dear Students,

As we prepare to meet this afternoon, I am writing to address the issue of possible refunds for room and board, which I know has been on the top of your minds.

Most of you were billed by St. Norbert College for your study abroad room and, if applicable, board fees. In turn, our partner institutions and organizations bill St. Norbert for these expenses and we pay them on your behalf. In this situation, that means we are bound by our partners' policies in terms of what room and board refunds will be available.

As you know, the past few weeks have been very chaotic for our overseas partners, as they worked to evacuate students, close programs and move classes online. As such, we have not yet received details about any possible refunds for a portion of your room and board expenses. However, we are continuing to follow-up with our contacts to work towards a resolution. Any refunds that we receive from our partner institutions and organizations for room and/or board will be passed on directly to you.

As our partners are fielding a high volume of requests related to this issue now, I ask that you not contact them directly. I will send you updates each Friday until we have an indication of what refunds, if any, will be provided and what the timeline is to receive those refunds.

If you have any questions about this, please let me know and we can discuss further this afternoon!

Thank you,
Gail Gilbert, MBA
Director of Study Abroad & Off-Campus Programs


March 26, 2020
Room and Meal Plan refunds for students

Dear Students,

We know questions about housing and Meal Plan refunds have, understandably, been important to you all through these challenging times. It’s important that we do what we can as a college to help mitigate the effect of these disappointing circumstances – disappointing for our whole community but most particularly for you, our students.

We’re glad to be able to share with you today that the college will be issuing refunds prorated for the second half of the semester, reflecting your inability to live on campus for the rest of this semester. The college will begin applying the housing and Meal Plan adjustments next week. Refunds will be issued by May 8.

Housing Refunds
Note: The percentage refund you will receive depends on the date you vacated your campus residence. “Vacated” means, no longer living in campus housing. We understand you may still have belongings left on campus but that does not impact your refund.

  • Students vacating housing as of March 31 will receive a 50 percent refund of their spring-semester housing cost.
  • Students who received an exception to remain on campus but vacate their housing between April 1-25 will receive a 25 percent refund of their spring-semester housing cost.
  • Students who received an exception to remain on campus and who vacate their housing after April 25 will not receive a refund.

Meal Plan Refunds

  • For students who vacated housing the unused balance on Meal Plans and Meal Dollars accounts will be refunded.
If you have additional questions, please contact the Bursar Office at bursar@snc.edu or 920-403-3002. SNC staff will be available to answer your calls from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m., Monday through Friday.


March 25, 2020
Work-away-from-campus requirement extended through Friday, April 24

Dear Faculty and Staff,

In light of the new Safer at Home order issued by Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers yesterday, the work-away-from-campus requirement for faculty and staff has been extended through Friday, April 24, 2020. This date is tentative and subject to change, based on future guidance from the state and our public health partners.

Human Resources has created a list of frequently asked questions that you may find useful, especially if you have questions related to time off and benefits. This document will continue to be updated as the situation changes.

We appreciate your patience and understanding as we work to navigate this difficult situation.

As always, please monitor email for new information. Supervisors need to communicate proactively with staff who may not have regular access to email. 


March 23, 2020
Update to students: Welcome back!

Good evening students,

I want to take a moment to welcome you back from spring break with this video message. If you have any questions, please be sure to reach out to your course instructors, advisor, or divisional dean.

Warmly,
Dr. Jennifer Bonds-Raacke
Vice President for Academic Affairs


March 20, 2020
Update to faculty and staff: Campus updates related to the COVID-19 outbreak


Dear St. Norbert Family,

In the uncertainty of these times, the college is mindful that the current disruption to your working lives is playing out against personal and family lives in which you’re also dealing with much disruption and anxiety. Attending to your need for information, for timely updates, and for working arrangements that reflect the deep values of our community – these are all high priorities. We appreciate the patience and understanding you’re showing, and in particular the grace and kindness you are extending to one another. We’re all also mindful of the additional strain this is placing on many of our departments. Your efforts are making all the difference: They are seen and deeply appreciated. 

Updates to the alternative work arrangement and employee leave benefits
The COVID-19 pandemic has reached our state and the virus is spreading in Brown County. To minimize the spread on campus and in our community, effective Monday, March 23, all employees must work remotely. Only those employees whose work is essential to the core on-site operations of the college will be permitted to be physically present on campus. If you have not already done so, please work with your supervisor to develop a plan to work away from campus. The implementation of each employee's arrangement should be guided by the college's existing Alternative Work Arrangement Policy.

We know that some of you do not have positions that allow you to work remotely. In order to support all our staff, we are:

  • Increasing further the hours of additional PTO for employees who are now off-campus and as a result are not able to perform their work. This increase takes the total additional PTO to 80 hours for these employees. This is an increase from the 40 hours of PTO originally announced for employees in this situation. This additional PTO may be used before using your annual PTO and vacation. This provision also covers any employee who is ill with the virus themselves, providing care for an immediate family member, or ordered to self-quarantine due to symptoms of COVID-19.

  • Expanding the college’s compassionate leave policy. The college has a Compassionate Leave Policy to assist staff members who have exhausted all of their accrued vacation and PTO balances. The compassionate leave is now available to individuals who are self-isolated due to their own COVID-19 condition or are required to care for a family member who has COVID-19. All other provisions of the original policy apply. Anyone in need is invited to request compassionate leave support for additional paid time off. The college has also temporarily lifted the cap on the number of compassionate leave hours that can be donated to the bank of leave available. If you would like to make a donation, submit the compassionate leave donation form or email jesse.albers@snc.edu, cc-ing your supervisor.

Employees are currently required to work away from campus (unless specifically exempted for essential on-campus functions). At this point it is not possible to determine an end date for this policy. We will communicate new information as it is available.

Student move-out and refunds
With the announcement to move courses online for the remainder of the semester, students have been asked to move off campus as soon as possible. Residential Education & Housing has developed a move-out schedule and process designed to help students and families maintain social distancing. We have been directly in touch with international students and students whom we know have special circumstances to provide extra support and the appropriate accommodations.

The college continues to actively work on a plan to provide students a refund or credit for room and meal plans. We understand this is of serious concern to students and their families.

On-campus events
Our top priority is to keep our St. Norbert College community and the wider community safe and healthy by reducing the spread of COVID-19. Therefore, the college is adhering to the Wisconsin state ban on all public gatherings of 10 people or more statewide. You can see the status of campus events on the Box Office website.

St. Norbert College Parish
All of the parishes in the Green Bay Diocese, including St. Norbert College Parish, have suspended the public celebration of Mass through mid-April. The diocese has arranged several opportunities for celebrating Mass remotely. Old St. Joe’s will remain open for those wishing to pray individually. If you or someone you know is in need of prayers, please submit the prayer request form. Father Mike Brennan is offering reflections via videos posted on YouTube.

Counseling resources
We recognize the anxiety and emotional strain that these circumstances may place on all of us. If you or your immediate family member would like to speak with a counselor, please use our Employee Assistance Program (EAP) offered by ERC. Note that some of these services are currently available remotely via a modified format.

Coronavirus and market-volatility resources from TIAA
Our retirement plan provider, TIAA, has developed a body of resources to increase understanding around the market impact of COVID-19. They will be hosting a market volatility webinar next Wednesday, March 25. There are many questions right now so this information is very timely.

If you have other questions, check our list of frequently asked questions by employees.

As always, please monitor email several times daily for new information. Supervisors need to communicate proactively with staff who may not have regular access to email. Check https://www.snc.edu/health/coronavirus.html daily for new updates.


March 19, 2020

Update to students: Information from SNC housing

Dear SNC students,

By now you should have read the email from President Bruess that was sent Wednesday, March 18. Due to increasing state guidance regarding the concern of the spread of COVID-19, we are asking all students to move out of campus housing as soon as possible. We are working to try to make this transition for you as smooth as possible, given the circumstances at this time.

Your Area Coordinator will be sending an email to you with further information on a checkout process later today. If you are currently on campus, please plan on moving out by the end of this weekend. If you are currently away from campus, we will be scheduling move-out times from March 20 through March 31. Instructions for selecting a move-out time will be included in the email from your Area Coordinator. Hours available will be from 8-8 p.m. daily, through March 31. Students unable to return to campus by March 31 due to distance or health, should be in touch with their Area Coordinator about making alternate arrangements.

A few general notes:

  • First and foremost, if you (or the people who would be assisting you in moving out) are ill with a fever, cough, shortness of breath (even with mild symptoms) or ordered to be home on quarantine, please do not schedule a move out appointment. In these situations, please work with your individual Area Coordinator to set up a time at a later date.
  • We will not be able to store any personal property or allow you to leave things behind. We have heard that U-Haul is offering 30 days of free self-storage to students who have to move due to precautions surrounding the coronavirus pandemic.
  • This will be an ‘express/self-checkout’ process. During your 1-2 hour checkout window, you will be able to swipe/key into your building, pack your belongings and move them to your vehicle, clean your room, and drop your key off at a specific location in a provided key envelope. REH staff will do inspections of your space for damages at a later date.
  • Please plan on bringing your own cleaning supplies and a cart, if needed, as these items will be unavailable to you.
You are being asked to only bring 1-2 people with you to assist in your move out. We will limit the number of residents allowed per hour through the sign up process to follow the CDC guidelines on social gatherings of no more than 10 people.

We will be directly in touch with international students and students who we know have special circumstances, for whom moving off campus will be more difficult, to provide extra support and the appropriate accommodations.

We ask for your patience and understanding in these challenging times. Please watch your SNC email account for further information and announcements.

Stay Healthy,

Joe Totman, Ed.D.
Director, Residential Education & Housing


March 18, 2020
SNC remains online through the rest of the semester

Dear SNC Family,

As we learn of people around the world making extraordinary sacrifices for the common good, I write to you now of my deeply felt pride in the lead our whole college community has taken at this time of global crisis. We moved swiftly and proactively, and continue to do so. This is only made possible by the help, initiative and public responsibility shown by all of you, together with the love I know you have for our college and its mission.

Today I need to share news that I know will be very disappointing to you all:
  • St. Norbert College, in line with colleges across the country, will need to remain online through the rest of this semester. As we make this decision, I feel completely assured that our faculty members will continue to provide quality instruction to our students, allowing course learning outcomes to be fully achieved. Faculty members are supported by our wonderful staff in ITS, the Library, and Faculty Development.

As the needs of the world weigh heavy on us all, the cabinet and I are focusing first and always on those whom our actions can support most immediately. In particular, this means focusing on the needs of our student body. Most particularly, we’re daily mindful of the sad disruption for our seniors of this, their final semester. I want to give you all my absolute assurance on two things that I know have been top of mind for us all:

  • We are absolutely committed to honoring our senior class – the big-dreaming, A-game-bringing Class of 2020 – as that becomes possible. Though Commencement will not take place as originally planned and will be rescheduled, it is our firm intent to celebrate this major and meaningful milestone with you. This will be one for the history books and we’ll make sure it will be a fitting culmination of all your achievements – including the sacrifices you are making now. We honor you.
  • As a result of the disruptions to this semester, the college continues to actively work on a plan to provide a refund or credit for room and meal plans. We understand this is of serious concern to students and their families. We expect to have the details of the plan ready to share by April 3.
  • Students still residing on campus at this point should plan to fully move out as soon as possible. We recognize some students are facing particular circumstances, and REH will contact them directly as part of our ongoing efforts to support solutions to their needs.
  • We realize that all our residential students will have questions about moving out. Residential Education & Housing will be sending an email by the end of the day tomorrow, Thursday, March 19, with instructions.

Faculty and staff, I struggle to find sufficient words to thank those of us who stay on campus to care for those very few students who still remain in their college housing; and sufficient words to thank those faculty and staff who are now working remotely to make sure all possible services will be delivered online, and will continue. I understand how difficult a time this is for you, too. I am keeping the needs of you and your families close, and hope things are well with you all.

Employees now required to work off campus, again, we need to ask you to continue your department’s remote-working arrangements through March 27. Employees still working on campus and their supervisors, we all owe you a debt of gratitude: You should continue to monitor email as any new changes in operations are communicated. In our overriding commitment to keeping our people safe, we are implementing building access by card swipe only, beginning tomorrow.

We continue to work out the details of all the above, and we will continue to provide more information as soon as we have it to share. But I did not want to wait to relay these cornerstone decisions that you will need to include in your planning. I know that these are uncertain and difficult times for us all, with many personal decisions depending on our communal and developing understanding of the situation.

We know, too, that students and their families will have many other questions. We can only take this day-to-day, and continue to stay tuned to email and to https://www.snc.edu/health/coronavirus.html. Questions can also be addressed to covid19response@snc.edu.

Then, I want to let you all know I will be holding virtual office hours Monday-Friday for the next two weeks from 3-4 p.m. Students, e-mail me during that time and I can call you or offer a Google Hangout.

Friends, when our SNC News team was picking the campus daily meditation for Monday morning this week, they chose this prayer for people facing great uncertainty. I feel I can do no better than to close by offering it, with you all if you would join me, this afternoon:

God of the present moment,
God who in Jesus stills the storm
and soothes the frantic heart;
bring hope and courage to all
who wait or work in uncertainty.
Bring hope that you will make them the equal of whatever lies ahead.
Bring them courage to endure what cannot be avoided, for your will is health and wholeness;
you are God, and we need you.

Sincerely,
Brian


March 16, 2020
Full range of student services still available

We understand that as you prepared to leave campus to begin your spring break, it was with many and mixed feelings. The usual excitement must understandably have been overlain with uncertainty, concern and even sorrow at this unlooked-for swerve in your spring semester.

Please know that the college will continue to provide our full range of student services. Some revised processes and procedures designed to help you access these services are explained in this message.

ACADEMIC ADVISING
Your academic advisor will continue to be available to you, as needed. Contact your academic advisor directly to ask questions or schedule a time to talk by phone or meet online. Academic advisement days will proceed as planned on April 1 and April 7. To get information about how to prepare, visit www.snc.edu/registrar/spring2020updates.html.

ACADEMIC SUPPORT SERVICES
Students requiring academic accommodations will continue to receive support. To discuss individualized assistance, contact Academic Support Services at 920-403-1321 or acadsupport@snc.edu.

PEER TUTORING
Students who wish to request Peer Tutoring services or Academic Coaches should contact Carole Basak at carole.basak@snc.edu, and will receive further instructions once the request has been made. For questions regarding Academic Peer Mentoring, contact Brooke Gustafson at brooke.gustafson@snc.edu.

INTERNET ACCESSIBILITY
Work with your professor to communicate internet accessibility needs. Think about where you have internet access or where you may be able to access it. If you need help identifying ways to access the internet while away from campus, contact the ITS Service Desk at servicedesk@snc.edu or 920-403-4040.

CAREER & PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT
Career & Professional Development (CAPD) will offer career counseling and advising appointments online or by phone through April 13. No in-person appointments will take place during that time period. Students should continue making their appointments through Handshake.

COUNSELING & PSYCHOLOGICAL SERVICES
Counseling & Psychological Services (CAPS) remains available to help you deal with transitions and challenges, as well as new anxieties related to the current climate of uncertainty. You can make a confidential appointment by contacting CAPS at counseling@snc.edu or 920-403-3045. As always, services are covered under the student health fee.

INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY SERVICES
If you have any questions about technology, software or accessing your accounts as you are away from campus, ITS is available to answer your questions at servicedesk@snc.edu or 920-403-4040. They have also prepared a set of online resources to help students, faculty and staff make the transition to online learning and working.

LIBRARY RESEARCH ASSISTANCE
The library’s Research Center will continue to be staffed to assist with research needs for your assignments and projects. You can reach a librarian using the library web chat function or by phone at 920-403-3466.

MAIL CENTER
Please make sure you are changing your delivery address on any future online orders so your packages do not get directed to campus instead of your home address.

COURSE REGISTRATION
Course registration will proceed as planned April 2-9. For instructions on course registration, visit https://www.snc.edu/registrar/spring2020updates.html.

WRITING CENTER
The Writing Center will be open after Spring Break, from Monday, March 23, and will operate using alternative formats. Students can make an appointment online. The hours will remain the same. For more information about the alternative formats, visit the Writing Center website. You can reach the Writing Center at writing@snc.edu or 920-403-3003, if you have any questions.

SERVICES FOR STUDENTS REMAINING ON CAMPUS
If you are a student with an exception to stay on campus during this time, on-site dining services and health services will remain open to you, and residence life continues to be staffed by both area coordinators and reduced RA staff. Health services asks that you call ahead at 920-403-3266, and notes they are not providing wellness services at this time. Additionally, Campus Safety will remain staffed 24 hours a day. Students remaining on campus may call 920-403-3266 to request a safety escort, if needed.

YOUR QUESTIONS ABOUT REFUNDS
We know this issue is top-of-mind for many of you. Since we do not yet understand how long students will be away from campus, no refunds are currently being issued for room and board costs. We continue to be actively engaged in responding to and planning for future scenarios related to COVID-19 and will revisit this decision in a few weeks.

Departments are working to provide their services remotely. Check office websites for updates.


March 16, 2020
Update faculty and staff: New working arrangements for employees, effective March 18-27

While there are no cases of COVID-19 in Brown County, the number of cases in Wisconsin and across the nation continues to grow. Our health partners tell us that now is the best time to act in ways that slow the spread of the virus.

Effective Wednesday, March 18, through Friday, March 27, all employees who can do so will be required to work away from campus. This includes faculty and staff, both salaried and hourly.

What does this mean for staff?
Employees should work out the specifics of this new arrangement with their supervisor. The implementation of each employee's arrangement should be guided by the college's existing Alternative Work Arrangement Policy.

There are positions that will be essential to maintaining operations on campus. Each vice president will identify these essential positions in their division. These employees should continue to report to campus as usual.

We understand that there will be some positions on campus whose responsibilities do not allow for a work-from-home arrangement on a full-time basis due to the nature of the work. These employees may be able to work with their supervisors to identify enough responsibilities that would allow an alternative work arrangement on a reduced schedule, using PTO, vacation or unpaid leave to close the hours gap. If an alternative work arrangement is not an option, an employee will use their current PTO balance first; once the employee’s PTO balance has been used, the college will provide an additional 5 PTO days. When PTO is exhausted, employees are welcome to use their vacation time or may choose to be unpaid for any remaining hours.

Staff who make the decision to travel for personal reasons and must as a consequence self-isolate themselves for 14 days upon their return per college policy will not be eligible for the five additional days of PTO referenced above. (See Expanded Travel Restrictions, below and check email daily for updates.)

If you are unable to work from home because you are ill or you are caring for someone who is ill, you should use PTO or vacation as always.

The college will remain open and even though many of our employees will be working away from campus during this time, it’s important to continue our commitment to providing our full range of student services in ways that are viable and easy to access – especially for the small number of students who have received an exemption to remain on campus.

Our hope is that working away from campus will be an effective measure to prevent the spread of the virus to our campus community. However, we want you to know that if a staff member contracts the coronavirus, they will be eligible to apply for short-term disability benefits. In addition, the Wisconsin Department of Workforce Development has prepared a set of frequently asked questions about Coronavirus and Unemployment Benefits, which you may find helpful.

What does this mean for faculty?
Faculty contracts do not include PTO or vacation. Therefore, during this time, faculty should continue to provide off-campus instruction and advising through alternative delivery methods as approved by their deans. Limited access to offices and labs may be needed to videotape instruction for classes or care for research and instruction materials, specimens, and equipment. Scholarship and service activities can also continue through mediated forms of communication.

Expanded Travel Restrictions
Effective immediately, no SNC professional travel will be permitted for any reason.

As shared previously, any members of the SNC community who have traveled or will travel to or through any areas designated as having widespread community transmission before or during their visit will be expected to self-isolate for 14 days following their return and may not return to campus during that period. In the United States this covers states seeing more than 100 cases, as indicated on the CDC map. In order to effectively respond to the emergent and changing nature of this crisis, the college may also draw upon other authoritative resources to determine when a state or region has reached widespread community transition, and designate it as such.


Sunday, March 15

Update faculty, staff and students: College athletics canceled for the remainder of the year

Effective immediately, the college has canceled all athletic competitions for the remainder of the 2019-20 academic year and suspended all practices until further notice in response to the COVID-19 outbreak. This decision is in line with actions being taken by the NCAA, and by other schools in the Midwest Conference and Northern Athletics Collegiate Conference.

We know this news will come as a disappointment but be assured that it was made with the health and well-being of our student-athletes, coaches, staff and Green Knights fans in mind.


Sunday, March 15
Workshops to support alternate course delivery

Workshops will be offered Monday through Wednesday of this week (March 16-18) to support faculty and staff as they prepare for Alternate Course Delivery. Participants are welcome to join in person (six feet apart!), or virtually via Google Meet. Participants should bring a laptop. Faculty and staff can access the 13-session workshop schedule at http://bit.ly/SNConlineworkshops.


Friday, March 13
Update to faculty and staff: Responding to your questions and concerns

We understand that the last two weeks have been trying for all on our campus, and we are grateful for the support you’ve been giving to our students and to each other as we work together to maintain the health and well-being of all in our community. 

As we anticipated Spring Break, our first priority as a college was to make sure students were well-equipped and prepared for alternative modes of course delivery as they leave campus so that we could ensure their continued academic progress.

As faculty and staff, your health and well-being also are extremely important to us. We know there are many important questions yet to answer, and we are working to respond to your questions and concerns. We understand, too, that the governor’s decision to close K-12 schools in Wisconsin from Wednesday will impact many of your families. We are reviewing our work-from-home, vacation and PTO policies, and also taking in new information from the government related to FMLA. It’s important to know that the college will remain open and will continue providing our full range of student services in ways that are viable and easy to access.

We recognize the anxiety and emotional strain that these circumstances may place on all of us. If you or one of your immediate family members would like to talk to a counselor, please use our Employee Assistance Program (EAP) benefit. More information is available here.

We appreciate your patience and understanding as we work to navigate this difficult situation. If you have unanswered questions, or topics you would like us to consider, you can reach out to your supervisor or submit them to covid19response@snc.edu.


Friday, March 13
COVID-19 Live Stream Info Session Featuring SNC Expert Panel

View a recording of the campus livestream event on Thursday, March 12, to learn more about COVID-19 and its spread, from our own experts:

- Dave Hunnicutt (Biology), microbiologist and immunologist, on: What Is a virus? What Is Special About COVID-19?
- Adam Brandt (Biology), molecular ecologist, on: How Viruses Spread. Rates of Infection & Death.
- Chrystal Woller (Health Services), B.S.N., R.N. on: How to Minimize Spread During the Current Outbreak.

A question-and-answer session follows the panel discussion. View the recording.


Friday, March 13
An update from the Midwest Conference
In a meeting of the Midwest Conference (MWC) Presidents’ Council this morning, it was decided to indefinitely suspend all spring regular season Conference competition and league championships until further notice. This suspension is effective beginning today, Friday, March 13. MWC leadership and the Presidents’ Council will continue to monitor the rapidly evolving situation and regularly assess the status of future spring athletics events.


Thursday, March 12, at 5:57 p.m.

COVID-19: New decisions on athletics, campus-residence exceptions, student employment, Children’s Center, and more

We understand this is a very difficult period of time for students, faculty and staff. Our community as a whole is responding to enormous challenges. We want you to know how much we appreciate the ways everyone is doing their best to rise to these challenges as we adjust to events here and on the world stage. We continue to be mindful of the particular difficulties some of you are grappling with as you adjust to individual circumstances. We as a college want to do our best to support you.

Alternate Course Delivery
Our students and faculty treasure the opportunity for close mentoring relationships. It’s important to understand that at this time we need to ensure faculty have abundant time to prepare and deliver course materials in new formats and in ways available to all students regardless of location. For this reason, students – even if locally based – should understand their faculty are not available to meet with them in person.

Student Housing
Students who are granted an exception to live on campus during Spring Break and the period of alternative delivery of coursework are expected not to engage in personal travel at any point during their stay. We understand campus-based students may need to travel to locations in which they work, have an internship, or are student teaching. The college has established a 50-mile radius for this type of same-day travel. Residential Education & Housing will be informing all applicants for on-campus housing of their status tomorrow morning, March 13.

Room and Board
At this time, no refunds are being issued for room and board costs. We continue to be actively engaged in responding to and planning for future scenarios related to COVID-19 and are prepared to revisit this decision should courses need to continue to be delivered online past Monday, April 13.

Athletics
In light of the NCAA announcement to cancel all winter and spring championships, we are suspending all athletics activities through Monday, April 13. A decision will be made by April 3 regarding athletics activities scheduled beyond April 13. With this announcement, athletes can plan to return home for spring break and the alternative instructional period.

Student Employment
Students who hold on-campus jobs that are determined to be critical to operations may have the opportunity to continue their work on site. Students who hold other jobs on campus may have the opportunity to work remotely, if the nature of their work permits this. You will be contacted by your supervisor if this opportunity is available to you.

The topics below may be of special interest to faculty and staff:
Children’s Center
The Children’s Center will remain open through Spring Break. Concerns about our ability to reliably staff the center March 23-April 13 will require us to close the Children’s Center during that period. A decision will be made by April 3 about reopening the Children’s Center after April 13.

Working Arrangements for Employees
We are discussing work-from-home options for faculty and staff. More information will be forthcoming.


Wednesday, March 11, at 4:53 p.m.
COVID-19: St. Norbert College will move to alternative delivery modes

Although there are currently no reported cases of the coronavirus at St. Norbert College, the probability that it will spread to our region is high. We are taking steps to reduce the likelihood of transmission of the virus here on campus and in the local community.

Our goal is to keep our students, faculty, and staff healthy and safe as we face the unprecedented COVID-19 situation. Because of the risk of widespread transmission, St. Norbert College will move to alternative delivery modes for course instruction Monday, March 23, through Monday, April 13. This period may be extended, depending on local and national conditions. We will communicate by April 3 whether we can resume in-person classes after April 13.

Please note this is not a campus closure but rather a change in how course content is delivered for the designated period. Students are asked to return home for this period, unless they have received an exception. Faculty and staff will continue to maintain regular working hours. Special care will be taken to ensure faculty continue to be accessible to students.

What does this mean for classes? Faculty will work with students to meet course learning objectives through an alternative delivery mode (e.g., not the traditional classroom). Students should take all course-related materials with them when they leave for Spring Break. These materials should cover anticipated needs for the rest of this semester. Students should contact their faculty member with any questions about academic course delivery. For tech support, call the Information Technology Service Desk at 920-403-4040.

What does this mean for the housing process? We strongly urge students to remain off campus during this time. If you are unable to remain away from campus for any reason, you must SUBMIT THIS FORM or contact Residential Education & Housing for permission.

If students who receive permission to remain in campus housing leave for personal Spring-Break travel beyond De Pere and Green Bay, can they return to campus at any time? Students who vacate on-campus housing for spring-break destinations will not be able to return to on-campus housing, academic buildings, libraries, health services facilities or other campus spaces until at least April 13. This is to prevent potential transmission of the virus by individuals who may have been exposed while traveling or at home.

What does this mean for Study Abroad? With the safety and wellbeing of all our students top-of-mind, we are recalling all of our study-abroad students. Those students will return home by March 30. The college will refund their study-abroad fee.

What does this mean for athletics? Outdoor athletic events will continue as planned. Indoor athletic events may continue as planned without fans.

What does this mean for upcoming events on campus? All events expecting to attract 50 people or more and scheduled to take place on campus between Friday, March 13, at 4:30 p.m. and April 13 should be rescheduled or canceled. No decision has yet been made for events after April 13. Organizers may consider alternative methods of delivery online.

Will campus facilities remain open? Ruth’s Marketplace will be open only for student use, and only to those students who have permission to remain on campus. Ed’s and Phil’s will remain open to all. The Mulva Family Fitness & Sports Center will close. The weight room will continue to be open to approved student-athletes and coaches only.

What does this mean for employees? Employees are expected to report to work. More information will be forthcoming.

What does this mean for personal and professional travel? The college’s current restrictions on professional and personal travel remain unchanged. Faculty and staff who do plan to travel should be prepared for 14 days of isolation upon their return. We continue to monitor the situation. Be aware that restrictions may change at any time.

What happens next? As everyone can appreciate, this is a dynamic and fluid situation. We are working expeditiously to provide guidance and support to the whole college community. We understand that this may feel somewhat overwhelming and challenging. We are all in this together. As you may know every college in the nation is facing similar decisions.


Wednesday, March 11, at 8:03 a.m.

Update: New travel restrictions and Spring-Break advisories

As the global response to the spread of coronavirus changes daily, we also see the situation across the United States and across higher education developing rapidly. In accordance with new recommendations from the Wisconsin Department of Health Services, announced yesterday:

  • Expanded travel restrictions. The college is now requiring further restrictions on travel, covering all areas that have widespread community transmission and/or are at CDC alert level 2 or above. In the United States this covers states seeing more than 100 cases, as indicated on the CDC map.
    • All college-sanctioned travel for faculty, staff and students to or through any states so designated is now precluded. (At time of writing, U.S. states so designated are New York, Washington and California.)
    • These restrictions cover travel for business, professional development, academics, athletics and all other formal aspects of the college experience.
    • The college is asking faculty, staff and students to observe these same parameters for personal travel.
    • Any members of the SNC community who travel FOR ANY REASON to or through any areas so designated before or during their visit will be expected to self-isolate for 14 days following their return and MAY NOT return to campus during that period.
  • Bring home course materials. The college is asking students leaving for Spring Break to take all course-related materials with them. These materials should cover anticipated needs for the rest of this semester. Like many institutions, we are exploring ways to be able to offer alternative modes of course delivery that will allow students to make academic progress and complete their courses if, in the coming days, the college should need to implement such alternative modes. In that event, it will be assumed that students have their course-related materials with them. Please check your email regularly for updates on this matter.

As we make these difficult decisions and any others to come, we want to let you know that:

  • The President’s Cabinet is now meeting daily on issues relating to COVID-19 and its impact on the college community.
  • The COVID-19 working group crossing multiple college divisions continues to meet three times a week, with its next meeting scheduled for this afternoon. That group has turned its attention to wider topics of how to respond to a domestic epidemic should that impact campus.
  • St. Norbert College Health Services continues to closely monitor reports from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and work with local and state health officials to keep everyone on campus safe and informed. The college currently has no confirmed cases of COVID-19 or exposure to anyone one who is presumed or confirmed positive for COVID-19 on our campus.

All decisions are guided by the need to ensure the safety of our campus community. We are grateful for your continuing help in observing these routine preventive measures:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom, before eating, and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning product.


Tuesday, March 10
Update: Health Services appointment scheduling

Members of the St. Norbert College community should call Health Services for an appointment if needed: The online self-scheduling options will be removed from the Health Services website until the end of the semester. If an appointment is needed, please email health@snc.edu or call 920-403-3266. This will allow staff to appropriately screen patients according to the current and ever-changing CDC recommendations.

Saturday, March 7
Update: Cleaning arrangements on campus

As the college continues to respond to the spread of COVID-19, we want to make you aware that the college has well-established cleaning policies that include both routine practices and enhanced environmental cleaning practices during times of need. Housekeeping has implemented its “enhanced” practices to meet current circumstances. This means that all flat surfaces, light switches, etc, that would typically be cleaned weekly are now being cleaned daily. The standard cleaning products routinely used on campus are those recommended by the Centers for Disease Control.
 
Routine procedures always in place for both Dining Services and Conference & Event Services are already designed to prevent the spread of illness. These procedures, implemented to protect the ongoing safety of our community, are well-established, rigorous and effective both day-to-day and in times of heightened awareness.
 
The work of all those who implement these policies and practices plays a significant role in helping protect the safety and wellness of all, both day-to-day and in times of heightened need. We truly appreciate everything they do.


Thursday, March 5
Update to students from St. Norbert College: Travel Advisory, Campus Restrictions and Other COVID-19 Updates

Dear Students,

In response to the rapidly growing number of cases of Coronavirus (COVID-19) worldwide, St. Norbert College Health Services continues to closely monitor reports from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and work with local and state health officials to keep everyone on campus safe and informed.

We ask that you exercise caution with your choices to travel abroad during spring break. Even if you are not traveling to China, Japan, Italy, South Korea, or any other country currently experiencing high numbers of cases, you could still be exposed. Like other upper-respiratory infections, the COVID-19 virus can spread easily. This spread could happen at large gatherings and venues, on cruise ships, in airports, on mass transit, etc.

If you choose to travel out of the United States, please be aware of the potential for the CDC risk level to change for any country or region at any time. That is to say that, although your destination may not be at Level 2 or higher when you leave for your trip, it may acquire that designation during your visit. If the country you’re visiting is designated Level 2 or higher AT THE TIME OF YOUR RETURN, know that you will be required to stay away from campus for 14 days following your return to the United States.

SNC Health Services recommends that everyone follow everyday preventive practices:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom, before eating, and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning product.
  • Current symptoms reported for patients with COVID-19 have included mild to severe respiratory illness with fever, cough and difficulty breathing.

If you travel abroad or to a location that has sustained person-to-person spread during spring break (or during this semester) and become ill with fever, fatigue, cough, sore throat or shortness of breath, please call your health care provider and describe your symptoms and your travel history.

It is important that you do not return to campus if you become ill with symptoms of COVID-19 after travel. If this does occur, please contact Health Services at 920-403-3266 or health@snc.edu.

We understand this situation is unpredictable and, for that reason, may cause people to experience anxiety, especially given the intense media coverage.  Please remember that this novel virus is not unlike the situation we prepared for during the H1N1 pandemic outbreak in 2009. St. Norbert has plans in place and the college will continue to monitor and revise these plans for any new developments. We remain committed to our students' well-being and safety.

The office of communications has built a webpage that will serve as a hub of information – it contains communications sent to various campus groups, FAQs and links to useful information.

If you have questions or concerns about the college’s response to the coronavirus or, for that matter, anything pertaining to the health of our students and others, please do not hesitate to contact Chrystal Woller, BSN, RN, our director of health and wellness, at chrystal.woller@snc.edu or 920-403-3266.


Thursday, March 5
Update to faculty and staff from St. Norbert College: Travel Restrictions and Other COVID-19 Updates

Dear Faculty and Staff,

We want to briefly update you on steps currently in progress as our campus responds to COVID-19. Please know that as of this writing:

  • Leadership in Academic Affairs and the President’s Cabinet have each met multiple times to make decisions related to COVID-19, especially as pertains to study abroad and international travel.
  • A working group crossing multiple college divisions has met three times in less than a week with its next meeting scheduled for Friday. That group has initially focused on the most imminent questions related to students returning from Study Abroad in Italy, but is turning its attention to wider topics of how to respond to a domestic epidemic should that impact campus.
  • The office of communications has built a webpage that will serve as a hub of information – it contains communications sent to various campus groups, FAQs and links to useful information.

At this time we are alerting faculty and staff to new policies related to international travel. These are in effect immediately. While we recognize there could be disappointment or frustration with some of these decisions, the President’s Cabinet (informed by the input from the groups noted above) is making decisions based on two primary values: 1) the health and well-being of all in our campus community and 2) supporting the ability of our students to make academic progress this semester.

  • Out of an abundance of caution, St. Norbert College is requiring that all work-related, professional travel be canceled to all countries with a CDC Travel Health Notice at Level 2 or above. If you are currently in a country at or above a Level 2 Travel Health Notice, you need to return to the United States immediately.
  • Upon return to the U.S., in accordance with today’s advisory to higher education institutions from the Wisconsin Division of Public Health, individuals returning from countries at or above Level 2 will not be allowed on campus for a period of 14 days from the date of return to the U.S., to allow for self-monitoring for any coronavirus symptoms.
  • While the college does not have the authority to place limits on personal travel, we want to ensure you are aware of the following:
    • International travel has the potential to increase your risk of contracting COVID-19, even if you do not travel to destinations currently at a high-risk level.
    • If personal travel takes you to a country that is at or above Level 2, or rises to that level during your stay, you will be required to stay away from campus for 14 days of self-monitoring before being permitted to return.
Any faculty or staff with questions about these restrictions should speak with their direct supervisor who, in turn, can consult their vice president as needed.

The college is taking every step to ensure the safety of our campus community. We value the role of international travel in higher education. We feel these restrictions are necessary at this time. As much in this situation is volatile, we will continue to monitor and adjust recommendations as new information warrants.


Friday, Feb. 28, 2020
An update from the president to the campus community on study-abroad programs and the coronavirus

Our first priority is always the safety and security of our students. Over the past 48 hours, we have become increasingly concerned about the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19). Accordingly, out of an abundance of caution and consistent with our duty of care, we have made the decision to recall all students currently studying in countries classified as Alert Level 2 or Warning Level 3 by the Centers for Disease Control.

At present, that policy affects only the eight SNC students studying in Italy. They have been notified that we are suspending their academic programs, and we are making arrangements for them to return to the states, complete their coursework online, and reintegrate into the campus community at month’s end, following the college’s spring break.

We will be in close communication with the students and their families throughout their transition back to the U.S., working to mitigate the impact of these changes.

As you know, the COVID-19 situation is very fluid and is evolving daily. As we make decisions about other programs in other countries, we will continue to be guided by what is in the best interests of our students, and we will continue to keep the entire campus community informed of our efforts on a timely basis.

If you have any questions about the status of our study-abroad programs or the actions we are taking, I encourage you to contact Gail Gilbert, our director of study abroad and off-campus programs, at 920-403-4068 or gail.gilbert@snc.edu.


Tuesday, Feb. 4, 2020
An update from Mission & Student Affairs to the campus community regarding coronavirus

Health Services is actively monitoring the developments related to the novel coronavirus, first identified in Wuhan City, China. At this time, there are not any reported cases in Wisconsin; however, please know that with any communicable disease/illness, this information can change on an hourly basis. Our staff maintains close communication with our local health departments (City of De Pere Health Department and Brown County Health Department) as it relates to the coronavirus. Please see the information below that was posted on the SNC Health Services website last week.

What is the risk?
The CDC considers this new virus a public health concern based on current information; however, the immediate health risk to the general US public is considered low at this time. The CDC and the World Health Organization are closely monitoring the situation and providing ongoing guidance.

Symptoms may be flu-like, ranging from mild to serious, and include:
  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Difficulty breathing
Person-to-person spread is occurring, although it’s unclear exactly how it is transmitted and how easily the virus spreads between people.

What is the SNC Health Services doing about 2019-nCoV?
  • Health Services stays in close communication with the City of De Pere Health Department for the most up to date information regarding this novel virus as well as any other communicable illnesses/diseases.
  • Health Services has and will continue to actively screen ill patients for travel history.
  • A patient exhibiting symptoms of any upper respiratory illness (i.e. influenza, common cold, pneumonia) is asked to mask as they enter the clinic.
  • If epidemiologic risk would be identified in an ill patient, Health Services would immediately report the clinical presentation to the local health department and would follow guidance on testing and isolation. 
Here is more detailed information and helpful links:
If you have any questions, please contact Health Services at 920-403-3266.
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