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March 24, 2020
Greetings Pitzer Students:
I know that it has been a chaotic and confusing few weeks. I hope that you are safe and healthy, and that you are now in a secure place with access to food and essential resources. As you know, this week is an extended spring break week. Although you are not expected to engage in academic coursework until March 30, Pitzer faculty and staff are hard at work revising courses and preparing to transition courses to online and remote formats.
To prepare for the resumption of classes, all students are encouraged to explore the Student’s Guide to Online Learning. From that web page, students can (re)familiarize themselves with Sakai and Zoom. In addition to email, these are the main tools that will be utilized for online instruction during the remainder of spring semester. Students should test their devices to be sure that they are ready to join their classes on Zoom. There is a link to a test site on which students can click “Join” to do a test run of a Zoom meeting. The web page also provides links to additional online resources that may be helpful for communications and academic work.
All classes have a Sakai site even if it has not been used up to this point of the semester. After faculty have finished revising their courses and assignments, they have been encouraged to post announcements and materials on course Sakai sites. In addition, some faculty may directly contact students via email with course information and instructions.
As an additional reminder, Pitzer College has a COVID-19 web page. Community announcements are being archived on this web page and other useful information and links are also posted. This is a good resource to check regularly so that you are aware of the Pitzer’s latest news and policy changes.
Members of the Pitzer community are now spread far and wide, and we will join most other colleges and universities in finishing out the academic year virtually rather than face-to-face. It will take concerted effort, patience and support from all of us to meet the academic challenges we are facing, but also to surmount the broader-scale social, economic and health challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic. That said, I hope that you will take a few minutes to regularly reach out and check in with fellow students, faculty members and staff. We are in this together, and simple hellos and expressions of care and support are powerful reminders of our shared connections to each other and to Pitzer College.
With my best wishes for a successful transition to remote
Allen M. Omoto, Ph.D.
Vice President for Academic Affairs
Dean of Faculty