On March 19, 2020, Hunter College President Jennifer J. Raab shared this update:
To the Hunter community,
I am awestruck by how well this community has rallied together in these difficult times. I have no doubt that we have the strength, creativity, and resourcefulness to take on all the challenges ahead. Many thanks to you, our students, faculty, and staff, for your courage and tenacity as we see our way to the other side of COVID-19. While the situation is changing rapidly, we will keep bringing you up-to-date information as it comes in. You can check the Hunter Coronavirus website page for regular updates, and I will continue to reach out as the semester unfolds.
REMINDER: REMOTE INSTRUCTION BEGINS TODAY, MARCH 19
All undergraduate students received a text message reminding them that remote classes would start today, March 19th. Students who have not heard from their instructors about their courses should reach out to each instructor directly, and then reach out to the Dean of Students office if they are unable to connect. Faculty who cannot get in touch with one of their students should contact the Dean of Students office. If faculty have any other difficulties, please email your department chair, program director, or dean. Remember, some classes will be synchronous and taught at the same time as usual, and others will be recorded or available for students to do at their own pace.
We understand that there will be many challenges in this transition, and we appreciate your flexibility and understanding. Hunter’s administrative leadership team is continuing to work through the issues and questions as they arise, and while we may not have all the answers yet, please know that we’re working to develop solutions that will allow our students to finish the semester.
INSTRUCTIONAL SUPPORT FOR FACULTY
Trainings, online resources, live webinars, and virtual office hours have been set up for faculty in need of instructional support. Please contact your chair, dean, program director, or Associate Provost Jenny Tuten for additional support. We would also like to remind you that it is essential that all course materials and communications be accessible to students. The AccessABILITY office is working with students to identify their needs for remote instruction, and there are many tools available for faculty to support these students.
EMERGENCY SUPPORT FOR STUDENTS
We are so gratified to have so many generous alumni and friends who have provided resources to help us create the Coronavirus Emergency Assistance Fund to provide support to students who have lost wages, have unexpected medical costs, or have other financial needs related to the coronavirus crisis. Some faculty and staff have expressed interest in contributing to this fund. If you would like, you can make an online contribution; any amount is greatly appreciated. Students who have lost wages, have unexpected medical costs, or have other financial needs related to the coronavirus crisis are encouraged to fill out an application. Please contact the Dean of Students with any related questions.
Long-term technology loans are available for students, thanks to the support of several generous donors, to ensure that all students have access to remote instruction. Students can request a long-term laptop loan using this form.
In addition, there are a number of free or low-cost resources, including free WiFi for New York City students, currently available from providers across the city. We are creating a consolidated list of resources on Hunter’s website, and we will continue to update it as we learn about more resources.
LIBRARY AND LEARNING CENTERS
At this time, floors 3, 6, and 7 of the Cooperman Library on the 68th Street Campus remain open on a limited basis. Students can access the space from 10:00am to 5:00pm, and desk staff will be available from 1:00 to 4:00pm for technology support. Library staff across all our campuses are available remotely to support students and faculty; all you need are your NET ID and password, or your library barcode (found on the back of your OneCard ID) to access them. For more information, please see the remote access guide, access the guide to online resources, or contact a librarian through Ask-a-Librarian.
In addition, the Learning Centers have transitioned to fully remote support and will continue to offer the same high levels of support and personalized attention. Handouts, online tutorials, interactive exercises, virtual workshops, and supplemental instruction opportunities are available remotely. The Dolciani Mathematics Learning Center, the Rockowitz Writing Center, and the Skirball Science Learning Center are able to provide you with tutoring online and by phone.
RESEARCH UPDATES COMING SOON
We will share additional guidance about the impact on Hunter research projects across campus. Please be assured that essential staff are on campus to care for any animals and see that equipment is appropriately maintained.
We appreciate your continuing patience as we work through the challenges of this new reality together. We want to give extra thanks again to our dedicated facilities and public safety teams, who have been working tirelessly to ensure that Hunter remains functional and safe; our essential personnel, who have been on-campus the last few days finalizing the details for this transition; and our dedicated faculty and staff across the College, who continue to support our important work from the safety of their homes.
Jennifer J. Raab