Letter from President Edna
First, I would like to thank you for working hard to save the University and the community from the Red River. Your hard work and generosity of time and spirit were inspirational to me and to the community. I continue to receive letters and emails from people who are thankful for the role you played in saving their homes.
My own home was saved by groups of volunteers including students from MSUM, Concordia, and Moorhead High. My husband and I celebrated our 36th anniversary this week and gave thanks for the privilege of living here and being part of the inspirational MSUM university community.
I know that this is a time of uncertainty for all of us. Since last week, I have been meeting each day with members of my Cabinet as well as the Emergency Management Team to decide when to bring classes back into session. Our decisions continue to be influenced by a variety of factors. Of course, safety is the first consideration; this includes not only safety of being on campus but also safety of travel and of egress. Additional considerations have been the capacity of the city infrastructure (sewer, water, and power) to handle additional residents as well as the policies and procedures of the Minnesota State Colleges and University System related to university closure and class cancellations.
Our current plan is to resume classes on Monday, April 6 and to open the residence halls on Sunday, April 5th at noon. However, that could change depending on weather forecasts for the week. Please keep watching our website. I am reasonably confident that, by Friday, the situation will be clear enough for us to either continue towards opening on Monday or notify you of a change in plans. We will use e2campus and our website as our primary means of communication.
I know that any changes to the calendar will pose difficulties to different groups of faculty and students. At this time, I ask for your patience as we sort out ways to complete the semester and enable students to proceed with their academic progress or preparation for employment. I will work with faculty, students, and staff towards solutions that preserve the integrity of the academic curriculum while respecting the needs and values of various stakeholders.
At this time, I know that many of you are wondering about grades, assignments, and graduation. Right now, we are very hopeful that we will return on Monday and continue the semester with the changed calendar. Even if we have additional closures due to another river event, there are ways that we can complete the semester. I am consulting regularly with my Cabinet, the Chancellorís Office, and the Faculty Association regarding those contingencies. In addition, in keeping with our long history of consultation with students, I am working with Vice President Wiese to make contact with those student senators we can reach for their input.
Finally, I know that some of you lost your apartments to the flood. We have a limited number of spaces in our residence halls that can be made available starting Sunday afternoon to registered MSUM students. If you have such a need, please contact the Housing Office during regular business hours.
I thank you for your patience during this challenging time. VP Wiese and I will try to send an update to you later this week. In the interim, we all miss you here.