We are writing today to provide an update on our plans for the fall semester, knowing that the course of the pandemic, here in San Antonio and beyond, is evolving. As appropriate, our plans may change and we will continue to closely monitor all aspects coughs from a public health perspective.
We know that the pandemic has been profoundly damaging to both your work and personal life, and we sincerely hope that you and your loved ones remain safe and healthy. We are confident that the new academic year, although it will be different, will provide you with many opportunities to achieve your goals.
We had over 7,300 members of our community attend or view recordings of our Roadrunner Return town halls held in the past few weeks, and we thank everyone who participated in the conversations. The additional details below regarding our fall semester plans are based on our commitment to your health and wellness as we provide flexible options and accessible to you and our students . Please see our Roadrunner Return website for an updated and complete description of our fall plans.
Work Mode Update
Over the past month, campus leaders have worked to evaluate the best ways to provide basic UTSA services as we anticipate the increased activity that comes with the start of a new year. academic. Initially we plan to share information today regarding work modality options for UTSA staff. While important steps have been taken to review our services and workforce, we are taking additional time to finalize our planning so that supervisors can present employees with a more complete picture of work modalities for the fall semester.
Because this planning will take a little longer, all teleworking agreements that will expire on July 31 will automatically extend to August 14. No new agreements are required for this extension.
By August 14, UTSA staff can look forward to hearing from their supervisors about work modality options for their position as we continue to determine the services that will be available on campus and practically this fall.
Travel Policy Update
National and international travel restrictions sponsored by the university have been extended until October 31, 2020.
The fall class schedule is almost complete and is on track to end before July 31 to reflect updated modes of instruction in line with our hybrid operating model. As expected, 95% of organized classes will be completely online. The One Stop class mode resource page is an excellent guide to explain the difference between the three online modes: asynchronous, synchronous, and hybrid online.
Students must follow the regular registration process if they need to make changes to their schedule. They don't need to take any special action if they want to take all of their classes online. As your courses are updated as soon as possible, they will automatically reflect the designated mode of instruction. For classes listed as classroom-based, faculty will also offer virtual options for students who prefer to complete their courses remotely. Registration questions should be addressed to firstname.lastname@example.org, while questions about the availability of specific courses may be directed to each university or academic department.
Update on campus services
- Employees will be required to purchase parking permits to use when working on campus. To accommodate a larger telecommuting workforce and employees who will return to campus this fall, a variety of parking options are available, including multiple parking areas for students traveling without permission, permits parking at standard rates, hourly parking and more.
- At this time, we are planning that buildings Campus Rec and Student Union be opened with modified services and operations. In addition to the programming available at these facilities, both will continue to offer a robust list of virtual options. The Roadrunner Pantry will continue to be open Monday through Friday through the fall semester to serve the UTSA community by providing essential food and non-food items at no cost.
- Due to a reduced student population on campus, we will not offer transportation services on campus this fall . While The Runner shuttles will not be available, all students, faculty, and staff have access to free transportation throughout San Antonio using the VIA U-Pass program, which includes convenient transportation between the main campus and the downtown campus.
- We will continue to offer students comprehensive support services and resources this fall. The vast majority of service-based campus offices converted their services to virtual formats this spring and summer, and have used the past few weeks to further develop their virtual offerings for the fall. Like this summer, most campus offices will be virtually available and some will also offer in-person services on campus.
- To support online learning and our robust virtual services, we will provide Enhanced WiFi in designated areas on campus where social distancing can be easily maintained. These areas include Umbrella Plaza, the Main Walk outside the Student Union and a portion of the Barshop parking lot. Enhanced WiFi services are expected to launch in the coming weeks, and University Technology Solutions will provide more information. As a reminder, the UTSA Libraries will also be open with hours and operations modified under social distancing requirements.
- The Roadrunner Return Compliance Training Module that will be required for all teachers, staff and students is nearing completion and will launch early next month. Similarly, our Health Self-Assessment Tool COVID-19 is being piloted and will be available to the campus community in early August through the LiveSafe app, the Roadrunner Return website, and the UTSA mobile site. Look at your inbox for announcements.
- Our current situation remains fluid. As circumstances evolve, the Public Health Task Force will continue to provide updates to the Roadrunner community. Your next report will offer further guidance on safety compliance, proper mask use, symptom reporting, and testing. Shortly after the report's release, the task force will hold a town hall as another opportunity for community dialogue and questions.
Fall Rate Adjustments
We understand that this fall will be different from a typical semester. Following the decision to suspend campus transportation services, as well as a thorough evaluation of our mandatory fees and available services, we have modified our Fall 2020 semester rates for our students, waiving the transportation fee and the international education fee. Other fees, such as the Student Union and Campus Rec., Will be charged as planned.
Updates from the Public Health Task Force
All in all, it will be a semester of new discoveries and adjustments, opening many doors of opportunity to continue towards our objectives in an innovative way. We will not allow the pandemic to distract us from providing our students with a world-class education or from conducting innovative research that will change our world for the better. Thank you for your patience and loyalty to UTSA throughout this journey.