March 22, 2020

Dear Faculty and Staff,

As vice presidents finalize staffing plans to keep only essential personnel on campus, I am instructing them to expedite the process for identifying those who will be needed to serve remaining UNT students in residence halls and serve critical business continuity functions. The campus will transition to only essential operations and we will move all other campus offices to virtual service delivery by 5:00 p.m. Tuesday, March 24.

UNT employees who do not fall into the essential personnel category for being on campus and are unable to do their work from home - as determined by your vice president and supervisor - will be reassigned to other duties or receive emergency leave through Friday, April 3. If health-related restrictions have not changed, the length of emergency leave will be evaluated at that time. Please visit this UNT System website to learn more about COVID-19-related emergency leave.

On Monday, March 23, we are also discontinuing most, but not all, in-person appointments for students and transitioning to virtual options where possible. Those options include email, telephone, and Zoom or other video chat services.

The Student Health and Wellness clinic is among the services that will continue face-to-face appointments, along with dining and residence hall services - with social distancing in mind. I should note that prospective students will also be able to utilize nearly all virtual options.

We began this intense effort to support our community's safety by extending spring break and moving classes online. It has been truly amazing to watch the teamwork by faculty and staff as we moved quickly to take care of each other and our students. We have also taken measures to ensure that our resident students are not unilaterally displaced, rather that we continued to provide a safe haven for those with the need or desire to remain in our care.

It is my hope that these immediate changes will further safeguard our community as much as possible while continuing to fulfill the university's primary mission to serve our students.

Neal Smatresk
UNT President