Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)

College Response

March 20, 2020 Update. Please see the latest message from President Amy Storey below:

Dear Keukonians,

Every aspect of life at Keuka College has been changed by the ongoing novel Coronavirus outbreak, including our traditional spring events.

Guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention advise against gatherings of 50 people or more for the next eight weeks. In addition, New York State has banned all events of any size indefinitely.

This means that the College must postpone all events including the following milestone events:

  • Commencement, scheduled for May 16, and related ceremonies such as the Baccalaureate Service
     
  • Spring Weekend, scheduled for April 24-26
     
  • The annual Celebrate Service... Celebrate Yates (CSCY) Day of Service scheduled for April 26. In collaboration with CSCY partner the Yates County Chamber of Commerce, this event will move to Saturday, Oct. 24, to coincide with national Make a Difference Day
     
  • The 32nd annual Carl and Fanny Fribolin President’s Forum Lecture, which was scheduled for April 30, along with related Fribolin Fest events earlier in the day
     
  • The Inauguration of President Amy Storey, scheduled for May 1
     
  • May Day Weekend, including Honors Convocation, Leadership & Moving Up Ceremonies, and honor society inductions
     
  • All ceremonial events, including pinning and hooding ceremonies

We know that the entire Keuka College community looks forward to coming together for these events, and we are hoping to reschedule rather than cancel them. We will continue to monitor the public health climate and keep the College community informed as soon as more information becomes available.

Finally, to the Class of 2020: There is no way we will let you leave without having your moment, and you will have the chance to come together with your family and friends to celebrate your remarkable achievements and perseverance. While we don’t yet know when, we will keep you informed in the coming weeks and months.

Sincerely,

Amy Storey
President


While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention continues to advise that the risk of severe illness to most people is low, it is important that we put the health and safety of the Keuka College community first. There are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 at Keuka College or in Yates County.

  • Spring break has been extended through Friday, March 27.
     
  • Beginning on Monday, March 30, all Keuka College classes will move to online instruction for an indefinite period of time.
     
  • Students in the Adult and Online Education programs will continue their current schedule until March 19, at which point all instruction will be delivered online. 


Vital takeaways for current students and their families:

  • Spring break will be extended. There will be no classes during the week of March 23-27.
     
  • Information about online coursework and instruction will be announced in the coming weeks. Our faculty and staff are working to continue to provide an exceptional education to our students via online instruction.
     
  • For anyone needing to be on campus after Spring Break, stay tuned for more information. In the meantime, please complete the housing request form so we know you plan on being on campus. We will contact you next week to confirm your plans.
     
  • Dining Services is not offering meals during the originally planned Spring Break (March 13-22), but will provide service during the second week, beginning with dinner on Sunday, March 22. It is possible that the Geiser Dining Commons and Wolf Den Café could close, depending upon public health recommendations.
     
  • Students who will be graduating in May will get an update regarding commencement as soon as it is available.

Vital takeaways for faculty and staff:

  • While we will be temporarily changing our method of instruction. Staff will continue to follow their regular work schedules, and faculty will continue to provide an exceptional education to our students—albeit in a different format. 
     
  • All faculty and staff are expected to report and be continually available per the terms of their contracts. The College also asks that everyone remain calm and work to lower the anxiety of students—and one another—by exhibiting a strong leadership presence and confidence in our pathway forward to help our students succeed.
     
  • With the majority of students no longer on campus and athletics and co-curricular activities suspended, some of our staff will be trained and redeployed to assist faculty and students in different ways.
     
  • During the second week of Spring Break, all faculty, full-time and adjunct, will take part in online training in best practices and strategies for online instruction (see schedule below). All training sessions will take place on Monday, March 23, on the Microsoft Teams platform.
    • Please have devices (laptop, tablet, and/or cell phone) at hand.
       
    • 9 a.m. – Nursing, Basic and Applied Sciences divisions
       
    • 11 a.m. – Occupational Therapy, Natural Sciences and Mathematics divisions and Lightner Library faculty
       
    • 1 p.m. – Educational Studies, Humanities and Fine Arts divisions
       
    • 3 p.m. – Social Work, Business and Management divisions

Archived messages

Dear Keuka College Community,

These past few weeks have been full of uncertainty and concern. As COVID-19 spreads around the world, we have been reminded about those who matter to us most: our students, friends, families, and colleagues. This is an unprecedented moment in our history that, on an international scale, has led to more questions than answers. 

One of Keuka College’s greatest strengths is our small, close-knit community. However, as COVID-19 continues to spread, those who are in close proximity to someone infected are at greatest risk. While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention continues to advise that the risk of severe illness to most people is low, it is important that we put the health and safety of the Keuka College community first. 

As students, faculty, and staff prepare to leave for destinations around the country during Spring Break, we cannot be certain that individuals will be free from exposure or infection upon their return. In addition, our community does not have the facilities or the health care systems in place to support a large-scale quarantine.

As a result, we have decided to change the way in which Keuka College operates in order to limit large gatherings, minimize the risk of exposure that comes with the closeness of residence hall living, and reduce population density — the most effective way to prevent the spread of disease.

Although as of today there are no confirmed or suspected cases of COVID-19 in our area, out of an abundance of caution, the College is extending Spring Break for on-campus students to two full weeks. There will be no classes during the week of March 23-27. We are currently evaluating scheduled Spring Break travel for our athletics teams, and more information pertaining to trips will be shared within the next day.

Beginning on March 30, all Keuka College classes will move to online instruction for an undefined period of time. Students in the Adult and Online Education programs will continue their current schedule until March 19, at which point all instruction will be delivered online as well. 

Many of us call our campus “home,” and our Adult and Online Education students look forward to their weekly, face-to-face gatherings. I realize that this decision will be heartbreaking to many, and especially so to our seniors, who have been looking forward to celebrating their final few weeks as Keuka College students together. We will continue to monitor the spread of COVID-19 and hope that we will be able to reconvene the Keuka College community later this semester.

While we will be temporarily changing our method of instruction, staff will continue to follow their regular work schedules, and faculty members will continue to provide an exceptional education to our students—albeit in a different format. Faculty and staff will be working together over the next two weeks to create the best possible online educational experience for our students. Faculty and staff should report to work as usual, unless they have been given approval to work remotely by their area vice president.

Effective immediately, all in-person, nonessential events must be postponed, canceled, or offered virtually until further notice. “Nonessential” means anything unrelated to educational instruction or dining services. Additionally, we strongly encourage faculty and staff to postpone or cancel any nonessential visits to campus by those outside of our College community.

Because of the temporary move to online course delivery, we recognize that many of our residential students may choose to return home. The Student Affairs team is readying plans to assist students and families with their departures. Information regarding the College’s housing policies and procedures will be forthcoming from Dean of Students Jon Accardi within the next few days.

We also know that some students, including our international students and those on professional and clinical placements, have chosen to remain on campus over Spring Break and may choose to stay on campus during the weeks that we are teaching online. If this is an accommodation you need, you must use this link to let us know. Those who leave for Spring Break and elect to return to live on campus while they take online classes may be subject to COVID-19 testing and/or quarantine. We will make every effort to accommodate your needs, but please be aware that services such as dining may be reduced to limit large gatherings. 

The entire College community is working tirelessly to adapt to this new environment, and we will be sharing information with you in the coming days and weeks through email and on this Coronavirus website. We have created a dedicated email address, [email protected], where you may send your questions. Finally, we have established a dedicated hotline, (315) 279-5034, for any questions not addressed on the website. The hotline will be available beginning at noon on Thursday, March 12.

We know that many of our residential students and their families will have questions with respect to room and board expenses. We have prioritized our planning efforts in this rapidly evolving time to focus on the College’s academic mission. However, we will provide information regarding room and board in the near future after giving full consideration to College and federal regulations and guidelines.

We ask that all members of the Keuka College community continuously check their email as new information will be shared as soon as it becomes available. These are times of challenge, but I know that our College community will rise to the occasion and meet those challenges head-on with resilience, resourcefulness, and a shared spirit of ingenuity.

Thank you for continuing to Believe in What We Can Do Together.

Sincerely,

Amy Storey​
President

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