On Thursday morning, Azusa Pacific President Paul Ferguson emailed the student body that due to coronavirus concerns, all classes will move to an online format for the rest of the semester, effective March 16. Ferguson also announced several other measures APU is taking.
“Since the news broke about the virus, APU has been closely monitoring the evolving status of COVID-19 and assessing our campus academic and operational strategy to promote the health and wellbeing of our community,” Ferguson said. “We have activated our Critical Incident Response Team COVID-19 Task Force to lead our preparedness, response, and decision making. Our strategies align with public health guidelines and reflect an abundance of caution.”
Currently, there are no known cases of COVID-19 on APU’s campus or in the cities of Azusa or Glendora. The closest case was reported on Wednesday in Pasadena.
Classes will transition to Canvas or other online formats, and will be designed and managed by faculty. According to the email, clinicals, internships, labs, student placements and service-learning opportunities will continue unless otherwise specified by the department chair and/or dean.
University housing will remain open for the semester, as will dining services. This means students may continue to stay on campus, for now.
“We will continue to assess this decision in light of unfolding developments and guidance from public health agencies,” Ferguson said.
All events on campus scheduled for the rest of the semester are canceled effective immediately. This includes all chapels. It also includes the Presidential Inauguration and Strategic Plan which were scheduled for April 3.
According to the president’s email, some events may be permitted to go on if they are deemed essential for academic progress and degree completion.
Athletics events will continue, but they will be spectator free effective immediately, in accordance with recent NCAA COVID-19 guidelines. Limited family attendance may be allowed.
General operations of the university will remain open. Employees will continue to come to work, but are encouraged to stay home if they feel sick.
According to the email, Commencement ceremonies and related activities, such as Baccalaureate and hoodings, remain scheduled at this time and under close review.
All U.S. outbound international travel for APU business or study remains suspended.
More information on how the coronavirus will affect APU can be found on the university’s COVID-19 site.
ZU Media will update the situation as more information is received.