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Agnes Scott will start fall semester with virtual learning

COVID-19 Decatur

Agnes Scott will start fall semester with virtual learning

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Decatur, GA — Agnes Scott College will start the fall semester with virtual learning due to the continued rise in COVID-19 cases in the state and throughout the country.

“It is with a profound sense of sadness and disappointment that I write to inform you that we have made the painful decision to move to fully online courses for the fall semester,” Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the College Christine Cozzens said. “This decision was made with the full support of the Board of Trustees and President Leocadia I. Zak. While we remained hopeful that we would be able to bring our community back together on campus, our commitment to your health and safety, and that of our faculty and staff, comes first. Over the past several weeks, COVID-19 cases have been increasing dramatically in many states, with Georgia reporting a seven-day average of more than 1,000 new cases per day. Nationally, we have also seen a sharp rise in the percentage of young adults testing positive. These sobering trends caused us to reassess our plans. If during the course of the fall, it is determined that it is safe to do so, we will start to bring students to campus—beginning with our first-years—so that they can have the experiences and embrace the traditions that their fellow Scotties treasure.”

Last week, the college announced that Agnes Scott President Leocadia I. Zak tested positive for the virus and was being treated at Emory University Hospital.

Here is the full announcement from Agnes Scott college:

Decatur, GA, July 27, 2020 — Agnes Scott College’s leadership announced its plans for fall, 2020 today. In a message shared with Agnes Scott students, Vice President for Academic Affairs and Dean of the College Christine Cozzens stated the following:

“It is with a profound sense of sadness and disappointment that I write to inform you that we have made the painful decision to move to fully online courses for the fall semester. This decision was made with the full support of the Board of Trustees and President Leocadia I. Zak. While we remained hopeful that we would be able to bring our community back together on campus, our commitment to your health and safety, and that of our faculty and staff, comes first. Over the past several weeks, COVID-19 cases have been increasing dramatically in many states, with Georgia reporting a seven-day average of more than 1,000 new cases per day. Nationally, we have also seen a sharp rise in the percentage of young adults testing positive. These sobering trends caused us to reassess our plans. If during the course of the fall, it is determined that it is safe to do so, we will start to bring students to campus—beginning with our first-years—so that they can have the experiences and embrace the traditions that their fellow Scotties treasure.”

The college’s current plans call for:

– Classes to be offered in a remote format that will begin on August 20.

– Summer workshops for faculty and staff focused on online course design and advanced use of remote technology.

– Training for the tutoring center staff.

– Student support from the college’s Academic Advising and Accessible Education teams.

– New library resources for supporting remote student research.

– Thanks to the generosity of a private foundation, the hiring of three new Office for Internships and Career Development career coaches to lead career communities and to support the professional success of students through online internships and jobs and graduate programs suited to their interests.

– Support for the physical, mental health and wellbeing of students by offering twenty-four hour, seven days a week services and resources through our Wellness Center, Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) and Student Health Services via telehealth appointments, and Religious and Spiritual Life.

– Use of the Scottie Emergency Fund for students who need supplemental assistance with essential needs—i.e. food, transportation, medication, laptops.

– Continued planning for an in-person, on-campus experience in the spring.

Details regarding fall sports will be forthcoming from the USA South Conference and the Agnes Scott Athletics department.

Tuition for the 2020-2021 academic year will remain at the announced level. According to Dean Cozzens:

“Your tuition supports the unique academic experience at Agnes Scott and the faculty and staff who deliver it. This includes the work of faculty and staff as described above to provide a rich, varied and always evolving academic program, and the many support services that enhance your learning experience and ensure your success. In addition to those already mentioned, many other offices will continue to assist you in registering for courses, receiving financial aid, paying your bills, and much more.

We have made the hard decision to move to online instruction for the fall semester with an understanding that there will be financial implications for the college. While financially sound, Agnes Scott, like other colleges and universities, will have to reduce expenses in order to balance the 2020-2021 budget.

None of us wanted a remote fall semester. Our values and our commitment to the student experience have made it necessary. Until we can be together again on campus—and we all wish for this to happen as soon as possible—I ask for your help in continuing to develop the close bonds of friendship and mutual respect that so distinguish our community. Online or in person, WE ARE AGNES SCOTT. Our community is strong and will become stronger still as we engage this challenge, together.”

Editor’s note: Agnes Scott College is a financial supporter of Decaturish.com 

 

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