S2E7: COVID-19 Situations

March 20, 2020
  • Academic Policy
  • Academic Scheduling
  • Collaborative Decision-Making
  • Records and Academic Services
  • Registration & Records
  • Systems Management
  • covid-19
  • Distance Education

COVID-19 Situations

The higher education landscape has changed dramatically over the past several weeks as a result of the presence of the novel coronavirus, COVID-19. This episode talks about ways the registrar is involved in decision-making on campus, and details three recent situations relating to shifting the academic calendar, the physical relocation of staff, and contemplating policy changes or exceptions to policy specifically related to grading.

Key Takeaways:

  • Higher education is an exceptionally complex enterprise and that the registrar plays a critical role in advising the institution on policies that affect the student experience.
  • Reacting to global pandemics requires rational thinking, a steady hand, and compassion; keep the humanity of higher education front and center.
  • Registrars are pretty amazing but we also need to take care of ourselves. Find ways to manage stress and remain healthy.


References and Additional Reading:
The Ready Campaign
National Preparedness Leadership Initiative
CDC Prevention Guidelines

Teleworking tips from your host, Doug:
some tips that I have found helpful over the years:

  • Keep your regular schedule: get up at your usual time (maybe a couple of minutes later to account for a much shorter commute), shower, eat breakfast, work out…do whatever you normally do in the mornings before you would leave for work.
  • Eat a good breakfast: fuel up for the day! This will also cut down on the Work From Home Snack Attacks.
  • Get dressed for work: It’s *super* tempting to lounge around in pjs all day when you’re working remotely but don’t do that. Putting on work clothes is a signal to your body that it’s a work day. You’ll be less sluggish and more productive if you look the part.
  • Stay connected! You might not be right down the hall from your fellow OUR peeps anymore but we should all be logged into Skype for Business and you should feel just fine about pinging someone to say hello. Be responsive to e-mails, instant messages, and calls. Don’t be shy about initiating contact, either, especially if you have a question about something.
  • Stay hydrated! It’s easy to forget to do little things like “drink water” when you’re working from home. The added bonus of staying super hydrated is that doing so will force you to get up and move around a little bit more both to refill your water container and then to use the restroom (wash your hands!).
  • Set up your workspace as a workspace: Try to carve out a location that is just for work and then only do work there. Don’t surf the web, don’t eat meals, don’t do anything except work in that location. Keeping some semblance of balance between “I’m at work now” and “I’m eating lunch now” is important for your sanity. And for the quality of your work.
  • Throughout the day get up and walk around. Stretch. Break up your day into manageable chunks of time. Working from home can feel like a slog sometimes, and it can be lonely, too. Gamify your day by setting a timer and working until the timer goes off and then get up, walk around, stretch, do a plank / pushups / crunches / yoga / jumping jacks / etc. to get your heart rate up a little and then go back to work re-focused!