Dear MMC Community:
I hope this message finds you safe and well. Although the global pandemic continues to present significant challenges to each of us, the MMC family remains strong in spirit, our bonds to each other strengthened by adversity, and our commitment to our educational mission more deeply felt than ever before.
I write today with an update on our plans for the College’s Fall 2020 “restart.” Given new developments in the COVID-19 global pandemic, we have adopted a Virtual Classes/Open Campus model in which all classes will be offered in an online format on MMC’s enhanced Virtual Campus. Our physical campus—both our Upper East Side buildings and two residence halls—will be open for in-person use (subject to, and in accordance with, the guidance and directives of government and public health officials). We believe this model will provide the safety, flexibility, and community that have been our guiding principles throughout the development of the Fall 2020 Restart Plan. Whether students are near or far, their MMC education will be dynamic, engaging, and personalized.
Highlights of the plan are below. More details are available on the College’s website, at www.mmm.edu/restart. If you have questions after reading through these materials, please email firstname.lastname@example.org, and we will do our best to respond within 48 hours. In addition, our Idea Catcher remains open for suggestions and comments.
A Special Note to International Students: We are fully committed to you! If you are studying at MMC on an F-1 visa, our faculty will work with you to design class schedules that meet the guidelines recently released by the federal government’s Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP). You will receive additional information soon.
Highlights of MMC’s Fall 2020 Restart Plan
- Academic Calendar: We will observe the academic calendar as planned, with an August 31, 2020 start and a December 21, 2020 end of the semester.
- Virtual Classes/Open Campus: All classes will take place online on MMC’s enhanced Virtual Campus, with a few science lab courses offering an optional in-person component. For those who are in or plan to come to New York City, MMC’s 71st Street Campus will reopen at reduced capacity, as will our two residence halls (see below for details).
- Small, personalized classes: Virtual Campus classes will be small and immersive, with a continuous synchronous component throughout the semester to ensure an easy exchange of ideas and a high level of individual attention in all courses.
- The Final Stretch: The semester will conclude with a flexible “Final Stretch” period between Thanksgiving Break and the last day of the semester for intensified individual instruction, final papers and exams, and virtual and open-campus showcases of student work.
- Access to 71st Street Facilities: Students, faculty, and staff will have access to facilities, equipment, and technology on the main campus, with opportunities for small-group gatherings, creative endeavors, study and research, and organized co-curricular activities.
- Student Engagement and New York City Immersion: These hallmarks of an MMC education will continue to be integral to the MMC experience—through both virtual activities and in-person activities, including Welcome Week, Orientation, and student engagement programs.
- Student Support Services: These will be provided both virtually and in person, including advising, career services, and healthcare services. More detail will be coming soon.
- Reduced Density: Each residential student will have their own bedroom, with a shared bathroom in each suite (2-3 people). Residence halls will be at about 40% capacity.
- Application Process and Priority Housing: Housing applications will be handled first come, first served, with priority given to new and continuing students who have already deposited. More information will be coming soon from Residence Life.
- Move-In Process: An extended move-in process will promote safety by allowing for social distancing. Residence Life will be in touch to schedule move-in appointments.
- Winter Break and January Session: Residential students may remain in residence throughout Winter Break and January 2021 at no extra charge.
Health and Safety Measures
- Robust health and safety measures, based on guidance from New York State, the CDC, and the New York City Health Department, will be implemented. Specific measures include, but are not limited to:
- Reduced building and elevator occupancy;
- Daily screening process for those accessing campus;
- Facility modifications to support social distancing;
- Required face coverings on campus;
- Enhanced cleaning and disinfection procedures;
- Robust contingency plans to respond to changing conditions.
- Flexibly designed work schedules to reduce facilities density
- A Pledge to Keep MMC Healthy, signed by each member of the MMC community, to demonstrate our individual and collective commitment to safeguarding the health of ourselves and each other.
We will be in touch again soon with more information as plans develop. In the meantime, please see www.mmm.edu/restart for more details and updates, make suggestions and comments through our Idea Catcher, and send questions not answered here or on our website to email@example.com.
I will close by saying how deeply proud and grateful I am to be part of such a resilient and creative community. I very much look forward to meeting the Class of 2024, whether in person or virtually, and to welcoming all students, faculty, and staff to a unique and exciting Fall 2020 semester. When we reflect back on this moment in history, each of us will have a story to tell of what we learned from these extraordinary times. I am thrilled and inspired to be writing a chapter of our individual stories together.
With best wishes for your continued health and safety,Kerry Walk, Ph.D.