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Dear Campus Community,
 
I have important announcements to make. I kindly ask that you please read to the end of this email as well as check the MSUB COVID-19 webpage for campus updates.

Tonight, we have received guidance from the Office of the Commissioner of Higher Education that applies to the entire Montana University System. This guidance is done in response to the increasing severity of the COVID-19 pandemic around the country and in Montana. These decisions are made with the health and safety of our students, faculty and staff as our primary focus.


REMOTE COURSE DELIVERY THROUGH END OF SPRING SEMSTER
As communicated to you earlier today, courses will continue to be delivered via distance, remote and online means through the end of the spring semester. There will be no classroom instruction.

IF YOU ARE LIVING ON CAMPUS, PLEASE CONSIDER A HOUSING ALTERNATIVE
The Office of the Commissioner of Higher Education is strongly urging all students to move off campus. This is a strong recommendation based on evidence that demonstrates the best way to slow the COVID-19 pandemic is to stop people from congregating in their communities and around the country. The higher density living of the residence halls is not recommended by health officials. This is a very difficult, but necessary, message to send, and we urge you to consider it. The spread of the virus will only become more severe in coming weeks if we are not able to stop the spread now.

It is a known fact that people who have no symptoms can carry this disease. While you may feel perfectly fine, you may be a carrier. Each of us has a responsibility to prevent others from getting very sick.

If any student has no place else to live, our dedicated housing staff will work with you to find alternative housing. To discuss your personal residence hall housing situation, please contact Housing & Residential Life at housing@msubillings.edu.


STRICT SOCIAL DISTANCING ENFORCED ON CAMPUS
To be clear, all campuses of the Montana University System are open and students who need to live on campuses will be able to do so, if absolutely necessary for their circumstances. But please, if you can disperse to less-dense living arrangements, do so.

For students who need to continue to live on campus because of their personal circumstances, social distancing will be enforced in the residence and dining halls.

The library will be closed until further notice; library staff will offer virtual research assistance and answer other library questions M-F, 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. via phone (406) 657-1662 or email at library@msubillings.edu.

Finally, the Student Union Building will observe new hours of operation, from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m., Monday through Friday, and 10 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday and Sunday.


RE: PERSONAL BELONGINGS OF ON-CAMPUS RESIDENCE LIFE STUDENTS
If you’ve gone home for a few weeks, please do not return to campus to retrieve your belongings even if you live in Montana.
Housing & Residential Life will be communicating directly with students on how they can get their absolutely most essential items.

Note — For other questions, or to discuss your personal living situation, please contact housing@msubillings.edu.


GNAC CANCELLED ALL COMPETITIONS, CHAMPIONSHIPS, PRACTICES SUSPENDED
The Great Northwest Athletic Conference (GNAC) announced today that all of its competitions and championships for the remainder of the 2020 spring sports season have been cancelled. In addition, practices and workouts for all teams in every GNAC sponsored sport have been suspended. Yellowjacket student-athletes maintain access to health care and academic services by appointment as well as all services available through digital methods.

MUS STATEMENT ON REFUNDS

During the COVID-19 pandemic, the Montana University System’s foremost priority is the safety of our students, faculty and staff. We recognize there are other issues of importance, financial and otherwise. Due to the dynamic and complex nature of this rare and extraordinary situation, the Montana University System will postpone consideration of potential refunds until after the COVID-19 emergency has been addressed. At this time, there is no certainty whether it will take weeks or months to manage this emergency. 

For more info, refer to the MUS FAQ page.

_______________________________________________________________

I understand that what we are asking of you is extraordinary, but these are extraordinary times. We face an unprecedented health crisis where our personal interests must come second to the health and safety of all of those around us, our fellow students, the citizens of our community, Montana and the nation at large.
 

We are all committed to the health and safety of our students, faculty, and staff. We doing everything in our power to continue to support our students needs during this difficult time. Students health and safety as our number one priority.

 
Sincerely,

Dan Edelman
(signature)
 
Office of the Chancellor
McMullen Hall, Room 207
406.657.2300