March 20: President Quillen: DavidsonStrong

On day three of remote learning, our students and professors are posting about their experiences, Career Development is advising remotely, holistic advisors are scheduling zoom meetings, and T&I is keeping us all up and running! I love your photos and comments! Thank you for building connections and sustaining relationships, even at a vast distance.

On campus, we are adjusting to this new reality as we support remote learning and our remaining students. Our top priorities remain that same: protecting the health and wellbeing of our campus and broader community, and sustaining teaching and learning. We’ve adapted our routines—many, many zoom meetings! We’re also finding effective ways to share how much we care about each other and how much each member of our community matters.  We’re here for you.

MOST importantly, and because we care about each other, we are actively working to abide by some crucial practices:  

  • We’ve limited those on campus to critical staff. Everyone who can work remotely is doing so, and most people whose work is not critical at this moment on campus have been asked to stay home for the next two weeks. 
  • Dining services has quickly switched to take out only. Students are staying six feet apart as they await their food.
  • Professors are working only in their classrooms and offices. They are not socializing or meeting in person on campus.
  • All people on campus are maintaining a distance of six feet between themselves and other people. THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT.
  • No gatherings. Even very small groups must practice physical distancing (6 feet between people).
  • Anyone who feels ill must stay home.
  • Buildings all require cat card access, and hours are limited.
  • Students who are living on campus should not leave campus overnight.
  • ALL of us must abide by physical distancing wherever we are.  

Physical distancing—staying away from other people—can dramatically slow the spread of the virus. For it to work, we need to practice it all the time. We all need to act as if we could be carrying the virus.  Thank you, thank you for doing this. I’m committed to helping us all find new ways of feeling connected.

Even as we all adjust to these difficult circumstances, our community is reaching out to help neighbors who are most vulnerable. Davidson people are helping to feed school kids, helping with rent, and delivering groceries to the elderly. Just as our amazing alums pitched in to help our students, now Davidson people are seeking ways to support their neighbors. I feel so fortunate to be a part of #DavidsonStrong.

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March 18: President Quillen: Campus Update and Thanks

In a few short days, thanks to the incredible efforts, generosity and strength of each of you, we moved to remote learning, moved many people to remote working, and moved over 1500 of our amazing students off campus.  As I walked around tonight, I felt the heavy sadness of a semester cut short and a deep gratitude to this community for facing this unprecedented challenge with determination and creativity. Absolutely everyone has contributed. Thank you.

The situation with COVID-19 is dynamic. Things change very quickly, even over the course of a single day. Right now, testing is limited and our town and state need to slow the spread of the virus. To do this, each one of us needs to stay away from other people. All of us are practicing social distancing. That means working remotely where at all possible and, when not possible, staying six feet away from each other. At no time can more than 9 people be in the same space.

This is hard to do, especially in a community like Davidson. We’re used to chatting on the sidewalk or in the halls, and now we can’t. Instead we take a wide berth around our friends. THANK YOU for upholding these social distancing norms. It is very important.

Things will continue to change, and it might get harder before it gets better. Please take care of yourself. You matter to this community. We’re here for each other.

Thanks again for all you do for Davidson.

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March 16: President Quillen: Campus Update

I have been informed that a member of our community who was being tested for COVID-19 has tested negative. We are grateful and know this is of great relief for this individual. 

We also know, however, that the virus causing COVID-19 continues to spread, and we appreciate and encourage all that you are doing to slow it down and prevent it.

From what we know about this outbreak, there likely will be individuals close to or a part of this community who are tested and some will be diagnosed with COVID-19. Based on guidance from state health officials, our understanding is that if someone in the Davidson campus community tests positive, we (administrators) will be notified of that fact but not of the identity of the individual. Individual health care privacy matters, is protected by law and we need to protect it. Health officials will then notify those whom they determine had close contact with the individual.  

Until our state and country have more widely available testing, and because it’s possible for those with the virus to have mild symptoms, we all need to abide by CDC guidance and practice social distancing and aggressive hand hygiene. We all need to protect each other. 

Davidson is a uniquely close community with a loyalty to all humanity. We think of others and seek ways to serve. Right now, we all have the power to help our community, close and distant:

  • Monitor your own health closely and consult a health care provider about any symptoms consistent with COVID-19 – high fever, cough, respiratory difficulty.
  • Take care of yourself with adequate rest, a good diet and exercise.
  • Follow the preventive guidelines: hand washing/sanitizer, covering coughs and sneezes and keeping sufficient distance from others.

For additional information, please continue to visit this page. I understand this is a challenging for everyone. I take comfort in our shared values as we all continue to make sure that we support each other with care, dignity and respect. 

Thank you all for your efforts and care for each other.

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