Provost shares guidance following latest statewide action

Old Main lawn
Credit: Penn State

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. -- Following a March 19 announcement by Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf to end physical operations at many businesses statewide, Penn State Executive Vice President and Provost Nicholas P. Jones shared the following message with the University community:

Dear Penn State Community:

In light of yesterday’s announcement by Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf, the University issues the following general guidance: 

First, it’s important that everyone who can work from home do so immediately and completely, until otherwise notified. Not everyone can, and each campus, college and unit differs, of course. It’s critical that you follow the guidance of supervisors and unit leaders. (Of course, anyone feeling ill must stay home and be in contact with their medical provider for care advice.) Second, we are switching buildings to locked status, accessible only to employees who have access and need to be there. Third, we are closing libraries and computer labs. Students with unmet technology needs should contact Penn State IT at 814-865-HELP (4357) or [email protected] for individual arrangements. We are committed to helping you fulfill your responsibilities. 

Of note, this guidance applies to all Penn State campuses except Abington, Brandywine and Great Valley, which were previously closed by order of the governor. 

Penn State can never truly "close," and the governor's order recognizes many exceptions that apply to the University’s operations. We continue to deliver educational and other mission-critical services that necessitate maintaining critical campus operations, from supporting our students, to maintaining vital research and lab work, to care for animals and other important needs at our campuses and in communities across the commonwealth.

It is important to emphasize, again, that each unit has unique needs and circumstances. To avoid confusion, we are asking that unit leaders, deans and chancellors provide specific direction that meets these guidelines. Of course, this is a rapidly evolving situation, and there may be new directives issued by the governor and/or other governmental and health agencies in the coming hours and days. We appreciate everyone’s understanding and flexibility. 

These measures are vitally important to help maintain the health and well-being of our full community, and we know we can rely on our community to implement them successfully. We are here to support you. Together, we will get through these trying times. We appreciate all that you are doing to accomplish that goal.

Best regards,

Nick Jones

Executive Vice President and Provost