Temporary Hiatus of Panther Caucus

Temporary Hiatus of Panther Caucus

The Iowa Legislature has suspended the 2020 Legislative Session until at least April 15, 2020. Our Panther Caucus weekly emails are taking a hiatus until after the Iowa Legislature returns to finish their work. We thank you for your continued support of the university, especially during this unprecedented time.

We want to provide you with an update on what has transpired on campus, to date. Please know that UNI's COVID-19 Incident Command System is meeting regularly and has developed the website prepare.uni.edu to provide timely information to students, faculty, staff, parents, alumni and friends. This website is updated regularly with information regarding the university's preparation and response to COVID-19.

UNI President Mark Nook

Coursework

  • As of March 23, 2020, all courses are being taught online through the remainder of the spring semester. Students who have a critical need, and do not have the ability to access a device to complete instructional requirements remotely for their courses, are eligible to checkout a UNI laptop computer on a temporary basis.

  • Summer 2020 courses will only be offered online.

  • Students and faculty are encouraged to take advantage of the online resources available through the Rod Library, as well as the UNI Bookstore, which recently made more than 50,000 ebook titles available for free through May 25.

  • The Learning Center at UNI continues to offer online resources, including assistance with writing and other student work.

  • The Educator Preparation office is communicating with students regarding completion of the necessary requirements to be certified to teach or to enter the program; waivers have been provided at the state level.

  • UNI leadership has encouraged employees to work remotely unless the function they provide must be completed on campus.

  • Advising and registration for summer and fall sessions will begin during the period of time when UNI is teaching online and limiting face-to-face interactions on campus. Academic advisors have been told to assist students with semester planning and schedule guidance remotely through online or other distance communication.

Residence Halls

  • Residency on campus has been restricted in an effort to mitigate the transmission of COVID-19.

  • Students who rely on the residence halls as their permanent housing or wish to stay on campus as their primary method of social distancing are welcome to stay. Those staying are asked to fill out a request form so arrangements can be made. Students who need to remain on-campus will be moved to a centralized location that will allow for social distancing. By keeping students in one area of campus, UNI’s custodians will be able to make sure all of our other residence halls are properly cleaned and prepared for students to move back this fall.

  • If students were unable to move out at their scheduled time, UNI has stored their items in their locked room and are working with them to find a later date to retrieve their belongings.

  • All residence hall information can be found here.

Student Health Clinic

  • As of March 23, 2020, the Student Health Clinic moved to telehealth appointments only and will support students via telephone and Zoom video conferencing.

  • Students must call 319-273-2009 to be assessed over the phone. Clinic staff will remain available 8-4:30 Monday through Friday.

  • The UNI Counseling Center will also provide mental health services via telehealth (through Zoom) for UNI students. Please call 319-273-2676 to schedule an appointment.

Campus Facilities

  • The UNI Wellness/Recreation Center and Health Beat in the student union are closed until further notice. Staff are creating virtual workouts and activities for students and members.

  • The UNI Dome, McLeod Center and West Gym are closed for recreational purposes and to the general public until further notice.

  • The Gallagher Bluedorn Performing Arts Center is closed until further notice. UNItix box offices located within the Gallagher Bluedorn and the McLeod Center are also closed.

  • The Rod Library is closed until further notice. The library has robust online resources for those in need of these tools and UNI encourages students and faculty to take advantage.

  • The Maucker Student Union is closed.  Virtual connections and support systems are being created and end-of-year celebrations will still occur through a virtual venue. The Panther Pantry will continue to serve students to the best of their ability; students may request a pre-assembled bag that can be picked up on Wednesday afternoons.

  • The outside entrance for Cedar Valley Medical Specialists will remain open for scheduled public appointments.

Commencement

  • As a result of these health-protection measures, UNI has cancelled Spring 2020 Commencement activities. This cancellation will not impact students' ability to graduate at the end of the spring semester.

  • Spring graduates are encouraged to participate in the Fall 2020 Commencement exercises and an email will be sent directly to Spring graduates containing additional information and guidance.

Career Services

  • UNI Career Services staff are virtually helping UNI students navigate this difficult time of employment uncertainty. In the coming weeks, they will update many of their documents and presentations to be available online.

  • Help to students on resume critique (as well as cover letters) can be done through the student’s career advisor or email career-guides@uni.edu. Mock interviews are being done through email or Google Chat. 

  • Students currently in an internship are advised to email their faculty advisor and career advisor. For students wanting to register for a summer or fall internship, the directions are here. In place of face-to-face meetings, all activity will be completed by email. 

  • Career Services is still updating the UNI Job Board daily.

Travel

  • On March 13, 2020, Governor Reynolds implemented a moratorium on all non-essential travel by state employees. In accordance with the governor’s travel moratorium and based on direction from the Board of Regents, the university is prohibiting all non-essential university-sponsored travel by faculty, staff and students, including all student organizations. This moratorium includes domestic travel as well as international travel (which was previously prohibited by the Board of Regents). This moratorium does not apply to personal travel.

  • Future travel should not be scheduled or commenced until further notice. 

  • Study abroad courses have been cancelled for this summer.

Prospective Students

  • Given public health recommendations related to COVID-19, UNI cancelled all campus visits through the end of the semester. UNI will soon post additional visit options, including open house events later in the year, virtual presentations and admission counselor appointments. UNI apologizes for any disappointment or inconvenience that comes with this decision. Please contact Admissions staff with any questions: (319) 273-2281 or admissions@uni.edu.

  • The Board of Regents wants to ensure that transfer students into any of the three public universities have the information they need about how their credits will transfer after this disrupted term. For both on-campus and transfer students, spring 2020 term will serve as an exception to standard policies. Transfer students will not have restrictions on the number of courses they took for "pass" or "credit" in spring 2020. These credits will transfer and be applied to their program of study.

  • UNI is encouraging prospective students to continue to apply online at admissions.uni.edu/apply.

Emergency Fund to Support Students

  • Iowa’s three public universities have each established emergency funds to support students who may be adversely affected by the COVID-19 virus to help students address their most urgent needs as they quickly transition from living and learning on campus to online instruction.

  • Alumni, fans and friends of UNI who are interested in supporting students can donate to UNI COVID-19 Student Support Funds, which will help students with issues such as housing and food insecurity, travel expenses, technology expenses for online learning and other financial challenges.

Business and Community Services

  • To our Iowa communities, businesses, entrepreneurs and organizations, please know the entire team at UNI Business and Community Services are here to help, whether through existing programs or new services they are developing.

  • The Iowa Economic Development Authority (IEDA) has also requested UNI's Institute for Decision Making and Strategic Marketing Services to develop a business survey to provide data and information on the impact of COVID-19 to Iowa businesses. Here is the map on the businesses who have filled out the survey. IEDA has additional information on their website.

The university remains committed to student success during this difficult and rapidly changing time. We thank you again for your patience and understanding as we navigate through this unprecedented time. As a reminder, please visit prepare.uni.edu to help answer any of your questions.