August 12 student town hall meeting with campus leaders

August 4, 2020

As we continue plans to reopen our campuses for the Fall 2020 semester, with the goal to provide a safe and healthy environment for you, we understand that you have many questions and concerns. Please join me and other UW-Milwaukee leaders for a virtual town hall meeting at 4:30 p.m. on Wednesday, Aug. 12. This Microsoft Teams town hall is designed especially for our enrolled students.

I will provide updates and several of our leaders will be available to answer your questions. We will share details of our plans to reopen, including information about online and hybrid course delivery, physical distancing and wearing masks, life in residence halls and more.

How to Ask a Question

Your voices are important. We invite your questions, which can be shared in advance or asked online during the live town hall by sending to: uwm-townhall@uwm.edu. When submitting your question, please indicate whether you would prefer to remain anonymous. We have created a UWM Fall 2020 Reopening webpage that is updated regularly. Please check this comprehensive resource before submitting a town hall question as it may already be answered; there are hundreds of answers available just a few clicks away.

Accessing the Town Hall Meeting

Please join the town hall meeting here on Aug. 12 at 4:30 p.m. The same link can be used for viewing the meeting at a later time if you are unable to watch it live. A captioning function is available; see below for details. Live viewing with an interpreter is available by contacting Amy Hogle in our Accessibility Resource Center.

Need some help with Microsoft Teams? There’s no need to download anything. Here are the steps to view a Microsoft Teams event. Read this information from Microsoft to learn more about the captioning function.

Please know that you are important to UWM and we are doing everything we can to support you. I hope you can join us next week.

Best regards,

Mark A. Mone, PhD
Chancellor
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

 


UWM adopts COVID-19 safety rules

August 3, 2020

UWM has adopted a set of rules intended to keep the campus community safe by limiting the potential spread of COVID-19. All students, visitors, faculty and staff are required to wear face coverings, maintain social distancing and wash their hands. Following these guidelines will benefit students, faculty, staff and visitors.

Individuals who have a fever or other symptoms, have been diagnosed with COVID-19 by a health care provider, or have been recently been in close contact with someone who has the disease. should stay away until public health guidance or their medical provider permits returning. Students who meet the above conditions who also live in residence halls should contact University Housing to make arrangements for isolation or quarantine.

Everyone must remain at least six feet apart in all shared indoor spaces on any UWM property, and rules regarding the maximum number of people permitted in any space on campus also need to be followed.

Everyone must also wear a face covering indoors and outdoors when six feet of distancing cannot be maintained. Face coverings may be removed while eating, working alone in an office or by students in their own residence hall room.

All students and employees must complete online COVID-19 safety training and sign a pledge promising they will abide by all UWM health and safety rules. Anyone violating this policy may be subject to discipline.

Requests for exceptions to these rules will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

UWM will provide a UWM mask to all faculty, staff and students on campus and will have additional masks available for those who come to campus without them. UWM will also provide hand sanitizer and engage in frequent cleaning of classrooms, elevators, and other frequently used spaces on campus.

Adherence to these guidelines will go a long way in keeping our campus community safe and healthy.


Tuition stable, fees reduced for fall semester

July 29, 2020
UWM’s tuition and fees are set annually by the Board of Regents. UWM tuition and fees consist of several components: tuition, which pays for teaching and instruction; segregated or mandatory fees, which pay for services such Norris Health Center and University Recreation; and other distance education and differential program charges.
For most students, tuition won’t increase for the 2020-21 school year. This includes undergraduates from Wisconsin and surrounding states that are part of the Midwest Student Exchange Program: Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota and Ohio. In fact, most of these students will see a slight decrease in their total tuition and fees, depending on their program and course schedule. This is the eighth consecutive year that there has been no tuition increase for undergraduate Wisconsin residents.
Tuition at the Milwaukee campus will increase by 1.5% compared to the 2019-20 school year for undergraduates from other states and countries and all graduate students. More information for international students can be found at UWM’s Center for International Education’s website.
With more than 190 programs offered by UWM, we encourage students to review tuition, fee and financial aid information pertinent to their program and course selections. The complete schedule of tuition and fees for Fall 2020 will be available July 30. We anticipate fall term billing statements will be distributed during the first week of August.

Segregated and Instructional Technology Fees

UWM is committed to delivering a high-quality educational experience regardless of course format. Many Fall 2020 classes will be online or in a hybrid format because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Hybrid classes will involve a mix of online and face-to-face instruction.
To address these changes, UWM has reduced segregated fees and the instructional technology fee (the distance education fee) for Fall 2020. Most students will pay the same or less under this modified fee schedule than they would have paid under the pre-COVID fee schedule.
For Fall 2020, segregated fees will be charged to all courses that follow the traditional fall tuition schedule regardless of whether the course is delivered online or in person. We want to ensure that all students have access to university support services during this challenging time. However, because some services may be limited or unavailable during the fall, segregated fees for full-time students at the Milwaukee campus have been reduced by 23% compared to Fall 2019. Segregated fees for associate degree programs at UWM at Waukesha and UWM at Washington County have also been reduced. Segregated fees do not apply to courses where a fee is charged in lieu of tuition.
UWM will also reduce its instructional technology fee for courses that follow the traditional fall tuition schedule and have an online component, i.e. online and hybrid classes. This fee will be reduced to $10 per credit, or $30 for a typical three-credit class. In comparison, the most common rate in Fall 2019 was $275 per course.
It is important to note that these fee modifications are limited to Fall 2020. We will continue to monitor the public health crisis to determine whether modifications also are needed for Spring 2021 or later semesters.

Segregated fee services for those far from campus

UWM quickly adjusted many operations to offer more services in an online format.
All students can access the Virtual Student Union in Canvas to connect to student communities and services including student organizations, virtual events and involvement opportunities with the Center for Student Involvement; the Centers for Advocacy and Student Engagement, which include the Women’s Resource CenterLGBTQ+ Resource CenterInclusive Excellence Center, and Military and Veterans Resource Center; the UWM Student Association; virtual fitness courses and outdoor groups offered by University Recreation; and virtual community service opportunities with the Center for Community-based Learning, Leadership, and Research; and many more.
In addition, many Norris Health Center services are now offered virtually. Check out the app YOU@UWM or participate in a virtual Let’s Talk chat. Norris Health Center also offers virtual medical and counseling appointments.
For a complete list of support services, please see the student handbook.

Assistance offered to students during crisis

UWM continues to work to mitigate the impact of this crisis on our students and their families. Support efforts include:
  • Distributing nearly $8.4 million in federal emergency CARES Act grants to eligible students
  • Refunding $7.4 million in Spring 2020 housing, dining and parking charges to students
  • Providing $630,000 in one-time leave payments to separated student workers
  • Increasing institutional financial aid for students for the 2020-21 school year
  • Distributing UWM emergency grants to nearly 270 students between March 23 and July 23

Face coverings required for all

July 23, 2020

Everyone on all UWM campuses is required to wear a face mask and maintain social distancing whenever possible. Masks are required when indoors, except when in residence hall rooms or private offices. Masks are also required outdoors in situations when 6 feet of social distancing cannot be maintained.

Public health authorities have determined that consistent usage of face coverings can greatly limit the spread of COVID-19. UWM is not the only institution requiring face masks. Similar rules apply at all UW System facilities. The City of Milwaukee and other local municipalities have begun requiring the use of face masks, as have several states and retail store chains nationwide.

A free UWM-branded face mask will be provided to students, faculty and staff at the beginning of the fall semester. You can see the design above. Details on distribution will be provided when they are available.

For visitors without a mask, service/information desks and department offices throughout the Milwaukee and branch campuses will have a supply of disposable masks available.

There are a few exceptions to the mask rule, including:

  • Where an individual’s own health condition prevents the wearing of the mask and the individual has received an approved exception from Human Resources (for employees) or the Accessibility Resource Center (for students)
  • Where the individual’s work or school responsibilities prevent wearing of a mask
  • When working in a personal office or other non-shared space, or in one’s own residence hall room
  • Environments where hazards exist that create a greater risk by wearing a mask, such as engineering bays, or biology, research and instructional labs
  • When performing physical exertion, such as manual labor, running and athletics training
  • When in an indoor area designated for eating food and social distancing has been maintained

In all cases where a mask cannot be worn and social distancing cannot be maintained, alternative methods must be used to limit potential transmission of COVID-19.

University Housing assignments

Room assignments are being made in phases to address student demand and meet indicated preferences. The first phase of assignments began on July 17, when about 1,000 students were notified by email. University Housing will continue to release assignments each Friday, with the goal to notify all students by Aug. 7.

Students should check their emails for updates. All contract holders should receive emails either with their room assignment, or with a notice that they are in a queue to be assigned. The goal is to house as many students as possible, while staying within the guidance provided by public health officials.

We thank you for your patience as we work through the assignment process. Please send an email to University Housing with any questions.

Klotsche Center

The University Recreation (UREC) staff is developing operational plans to open the Klotsche Center and Pavilion for in-person use for the Fall 2020 semester. The facilities will open with an initial focus on cardio and strength experiences, individual activity and programming that can be offered while maintaining physical distance. While there will be modifications to building hours, capacity, space availability, services and programs, there is a commitment to provide ways to experience UREC in-person in the fall.

You can also take advantage of a variety of virtual fitness classes and outdoor recreation programs offered by UREC, which will continue to provide online offerings in the fall. Please visit the UREC site for more information.

Fall sports

With health and safety as our top priority, the Horizon League Council delayed the start of all sports competition until Oct. 1, 2020. This will affect any team that would have had a scheduled contest (exhibition, league or nonconference) prior to Oct. 1.

Panther Athletics’ Return to Campus committee is reviewing options and guidelines for fan attendance for events this year.

Meeting with faculty and advisors

All individual student meetings with faculty, teaching assistants, peer mentors, advisors, coaches, coordinators and tutors will happen online in the fall. Instructors and student support offices and centers will post clear information about availability and scheduling.

Please note that these services are available for all students in all online and in-person classes, regardless of whether they are living in University Housing, off campus or taking courses virtually while staying at home with family.


Chancellor’s Update: Milwaukee Health Department approves UWM reopening plan

July 22, 2020

Dear Students,

I am pleased to report that UWM’s reopening plan has been approved by the City of Milwaukee Health Department. As many of you know, the Health Department recently enacted more restrictive guidelines for when in-person classes may resume. We are the first college or university in Milwaukee to receive permission from the Health Department to move forward with a combination of in-person and online instruction.

I’d like to thank City of Milwaukee leaders, including Mayor Tom Barrett, Milwaukee Health Commissioner Jeanette Kowalik and her team of health professionals, as well as UW System President Tommy Thompson for working collaboratively with us on this issue. We share a common goal of doing everything we can to protect the health and well-being of our students, faculty and staff while still meeting students’ educational needs.

I’m pleased that we will be able to continue moving forward with our plans for the fall semester. Our reopening plan is based on the Emergency Operations Center Report and detailed in hundreds of FAQs on our reopening website. Please visit that website for more information on what the fall will look like at UWM.

Best regards,

Mark A. Mone
Chancellor
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee


Update on the format of fall classes

July 21, 2020

Many of you have read recent news stories about the City of Milwaukee Health Department enacting more restrictive guidelines for when in-person classes may resume. These reports have raised many questions about UWM’s plans for the fall.

We are writing to let you know that UWM’s leadership is working closely with the city Health Department so that we will be able to teach a portion of our classes in person this fall, as we’ve been planning. There have been a series of constructive conversations, and although we don’t yet have final details, we are confident that UWM’s significant planning for the fall will result in a positive outcome. We want to again express our gratitude to the many faculty and staff members involved in fall planning for their good work. Your efforts with careful and thorough planning have made a big difference.

We will share more information with you as it becomes available.


Update on format of fall classes

July 10, 2020

We are writing today to provide an update on our course schedule and planning for the fall semester. Because of the dynamic, evolving nature of the COVID-19 pandemic and the thousands of courses at UWM, this work is complex. We ask for and value your patience and understanding as we seek to continue your education in ways that are healthy, safe and academically robust.

The Registrar’s Office has begun noting in PAWS which classes will be online or hybrid during the fall semester, and many students are likely seeing changes in their class schedule. Please be aware that changes will continue to be made until July 20, and the schedule students see now may not be their final schedule. We strongly urge students to delay making housing commitments until scheduling changes are finished on July 20.

It is important to keep in mind that before the COVID-19 pandemic, UWM already had the largest online education program in Wisconsin. Sixteen percent of our classes were online before the pandemic, and 44% of our students were taking at least one online course. For Fall 2020, we are expanding use of hybrid formats that combine face-to-face and online instruction. This will allow us to provide more students with face-to-face instruction while still meeting social distancing guidelines, but even so, like most universities nationwide, we do not have the classroom space to provide the same amount of face-to-face instruction as in the past.

We also must remain flexible in response to evolving public health regulations.

With that in mind, current plans call for roughly one-third of UWM’s approximately 6,000 classes to involve some face-to-face instruction this fall. This does not mean that every student will have a class that involves face-to-face instruction, as many of these classes will be quite small. Class formats are being determined at the department level with consideration for health and safety and educational effectiveness. The number of hybrid classes students have will vary from program to program.

The quality of instruction remains a priority, and UWM has invested significantly in hardware and software for remote learning in recent months. Also, most of our instructors have or will have completed training in online and blended instruction before the fall semester begins. Moving forward, faculty, instructional staff and graduate teaching assistants will be expected to add to their skills in this area on an ongoing basis.

We know that many students are concerned about the proposed temporary rule announced Monday by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement requiring international students enrolled only in online classes to leave the United States or face immigration penalties. We share these concerns and ask for patience while we work on options for these students.

We recognize that all of our students have questions and concerns about their specific schedules, including how they can make modifications to address their specific needs. We encourage them to wait until July 20, when class formats will be finalized, and then reach out to their advisors for assistance.


Faculty-led study abroad programs canceled

July 2, 2020

Given ongoing public health advisories against international travel, UWM has decided to cancel all faculty-led study abroad and exchange programs for the Fall 2020 semester.

Individual students may apply for an exemption through UWM’s International Travel Policy by filling out a Travel Risk Assessment form. However, please note the U.S. Department of State has issued a Level 4 global travel advisory, which advises U.S. citizens to avoid traveling abroad because of the pandemic. That advisory has no defined end date. Also, most countries have travel advisories for people traveling from the United States.

Faculty-led study abroad programs for the Summer 2020 term, along with a summer seminar program at the United Nations in New York, have already been canceled.

Opting out of releasing info to U.S. Census

Along with universities across the country, UWM is helping to ensure that students are accurately counted in the 2020 Census. The U.S. Census counts students where they usually live as of April 1, 2020, even if they left the campus early because of COVID-19.

Pursuant to federal and state law, UWM releases student directory data (including name, address and phone number) to third parties upon request. UWM will be providing student directory data to the U.S. Census Bureau on July 10, 2020. If you would like to restrict your student directory information from being shared with the U.S. Census Bureau, please complete the steps below by July 9, 2020, to ensure that you are not included in UWM’s response.

To opt out:

  1. Log in to PAWS
  2. Under the yellow “Personal Information” header, click on the blue “Change Contact Restriction” button
  3. Click the “Yes” button to make your contact information private, then click “Save”

If you opt out, UWM encourages you to complete the 2020 Census online using the address where you lived on April 1, 2020. For more information about UWM’s 2020 Census efforts, please see: uwm.edu/neighborhoodhousing/2020-census.

In addition to the U.S. Census Bureau, UWM is required to release student directory information upon request to any third party in accordance with Wisconsin public records law. Opting out (following the steps above) will provide you with more privacy and less unwanted communications from third parties such as political groups and national clearinghouses. However, if you opt out, your contact information will not be included in the public UWM online directory. You also will not receive communications from local restaurants and other businesses.


Residence halls will be open

June 24, 2020

Residence halls will be open this fall, operating in many ways as they always have but with several modifications to increase safety.

Housing assignments will be made largely as they have in the past, with single and double rooms. Room assignments will be made in phases to address student demand and to allow staff to assign rooms with preferred roommates.

All UWM residential housing is suite-style, with typically three to four bedrooms in one suite connected to a bathroom. Unlike many universities, UWM does not have large, communal restrooms.

Move-in times will be staggered more than usual to reduce crowding and allow for maximum social distancing. Details on move-in days and times will be announced later in the summer. Some housing units will be reserved for isolation space for residential students exposed to or infected with COVID-19. Exposed students will be asked to return home for their isolation period, but residents without that option can stay in the on-campus isolation rooms.

Students will be required to wear masks except when they are in their rooms or outside with enough room to maintain 6 feet of distance.

Dining will be available in some residence halls and the UWM Student Union. Meals will be ordered and paid for using a computer, cellphone or other mobile device. Service will be contactless.

Planning continues for the fall, and more details about campus housing and dining will be posted when the information is available.

Students, including freshmen, are welcome to live off campus. However, residence halls provide maximum flexibility, with prorated refunds guaranteed should public health conditions require a return to fully remote learning.

For more information on housing, see the University Housing website. If you have a question, please fill out this University Housing contact form and a staff member can respond by phone or email.

More information on the university’s plans for fall are available on the Fall 2020 Reopening webpages.

Free class on city of Milwaukee

UWM is offering a free online class this summer focused on the city of Milwaukee. The class – Milwaukee: Past, Present, Future – will run July 6-31 and be broken into four weeklong modules:

  • Week 1: Great City by a Great Lake: Natural and Built Environments
  • Week 2: Made in Milwaukee: Manufacturing, Industry and Labor in the Cream City
  • Week 3: Civil Rights Milwaukee: From Turner Hall to the 16th Street Bridge
  • Week 4: The City as Museum: Art, Culture and Community in Milwaukee

Each unit will include short video lectures, interesting readings and optional assignments designed to inspire participants’ creativity. For example, participants may be asked to write a poem or draw a map. They also will contribute to group discussions and have an opportunity to interact with professors one on one during virtual office hours.

UWM students, their parents and community members are welcome to take the course for personal enrichment. One college credit was available to the first 200 freshmen or transfer students who enrolled for credit. Those slots have been filled.

Prior to the COVID-19 pandemic, UW-Milwaukee was already home to Wisconsin’s largest online education program, with over 850 online classes and more than 40 fully online degrees and certificates. Since March, UWM has invested more than $450,000 in hardware and software for remote instruction and faculty training. This summer, UWM’s Center for Excellence in Teaching and Learning is providing faculty and instructional staff with additional training in online and blended instruction, covering topics such as supporting students, building community and delivering content.


Chancellor’s Update: Fall 2020 Reopening Decisions

June 17, 2020

Dear UWM Faculty, Staff and Students,

I am pleased to announce that after months of planning, UW-Milwaukee will reopen for fall of 2020. Today I share the highlights of our decisions to date, which were guided by our goal to provide a safe and healthy environment for students, faculty and staff.

There are many factors involved in resuming operations, and we do not know everything at this point. More details will develop as we prepare for the fall semester, and we will continue to share updates, including at a town hall meeting for faculty and staff on Thursday, June 25, from 9-10 a.m. We will send an invitation for the employee meeting shortly, and we will offer town hall meetings for students as we get closer to the start of the academic year.

How We Got Here

Our decisions align with guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and state and local public health authorities. We will continue to work closely with state and local public health officials on prevention, planning and response to COVID-19, and will modify our guidelines and decisions as needed to protect the health and safety of our students and employees. We ask for everyone’s patience and understanding as we navigate this new and evolving environment.

Our announcements today are possible due to the significant efforts of 140 faculty, staff and students within 14 planning teams that have addressed issues related to instruction, building preparations, student services, housing, human resources, IT, research, travel, purchasing, supplies and more. Our teams have put in countless hours to study and offer solutions to many complicated and challenging issues. I extend my thanks to all the team members for their dedication and commitment to this critical work and our future.

Decisions

There are too many planning details to capture entirely here, and thus, I encourage you to examine the specific information in the resources cited below. As an overview, our main decisions include:

Personal Health and Safety

  • Face coverings and six feet of social distancing will be required, with exceptions such as in private offices or residence hall rooms.
  • Buildings are being modified to direct traffic flow and include plexiglass in high-traffic areas.
  • Prioritized cleaning will occur for high-touch areas (e.g., door handles, light switches, elevator buttons, bathrooms, etc.).
  • Classrooms will be cleaned once or twice each day.
  • Staggered entry and exit protocols will be used in classrooms.
  • Hand sanitizer and cleaning supplies will be provided in classrooms for instructors and students to clean at their discretion the individual space they occupy.
  • Hand sanitizer and cleaning supplies will be provided for office spaces.
  • Environmental Services cleaning staff and other Facility Services staff will be scheduled appropriately to prioritize the outlined safety standards.
  • Students and employees are expected to monitor their health, watch for symptoms and stay home if they are sick.

Classroom and Remote Learning

UWM will allow face to face instruction within the constraints of social distancing and other public health guidelines, balanced with a wide array of online options, as follows:

  • Classes with capacities of up to 100 will use a hybrid model of both face to face and online instruction with no more than half the class meeting in person at a given time.
  • The maximum number of students who simultaneously attend an in-person class will be 50.
  • As usual, UWM will offer hundreds of courses entirely online, including all classes with more than 100 students.
  • The academic calendar will remain the same.
  • Some lab, studio, and other experiential courses will be conducted entirely or almost entirely face to face with social distancing unless there is a need to convert to online instruction.
  • Students who request online course content will be accommodated to the extent possible.

Facilities

Buildings remain closed through July 31. However, about 1,000 people are currently approved to be on our campuses at different times to perform essential functions. To allow even more people to return, we will use a phased approach to resume operations in this order:

  • Research operations will move to Stage 2 of the Office of Research’s process;
  • Academic and student services as needed for essential summer activities to support current and prospective students;
  • Employees who will prepare our facilities and operations for the return of students, faculty and staff in the fall; and
  • Employees from all other functions, in an order to be determined by campus leadership in consultation with our Emergency Operations Center and University Safety and Assurances.

We do not expect all employees to work on site during the fall semester.

Housing

  • Student housing assignments will be made largely as they have in the past, with single and double rooms. Room assignments will be made in phases as we address student demand and work to assign students with their preferred roommates.
  • Some housing units will be reserved for isolation space for exposed or infected residential students who do not have alternative housing options.
  • Testing for students will be available on-site, focused primarily on students with COVID-19 symptoms.

Resources

Details on all these topics are available in two reports:

In addition, we have launched a  Fall 2020 Reopening website with updates, FAQs organized by topic and a feature to submit questions. This site contains a wealth of resources, and I encourage you to use it to access the latest information.

We look forward to safely welcoming students, faculty and staff to our campuses this fall. While classes and operations will look different, we will remain a caring and supportive environment for our students and employees. We will continue to prioritize health and safety and continuity of academics, research and engagement. I thank everyone in advance for your efforts to make us successful this fall, which will include monitoring our own individual health and following guidelines aimed at keeping our fellow Panthers safe and healthy.

Best regards,

Mark A. Mone
Chancellor
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee


Libraries to provide contactless pickup

May 29, 2020

The UWM Libraries are excited to announce a contactless pickup service for books and DVDs at all library locations. Pickups will begin on June 1; students and faculty may begin requesting items May 27.

While the libraries assess interest in this new service, there will be a limit of five items at a time and one scheduled pickup per week per person.

Throughout this spring’s closure due to COVID-19, the libraries’ extensive digital resources remained available. This new service significantly expands access to the libraries’ books and DVDs, putting these materials back into circulation.

More information about the service and specific procedures can be found on the libraries’ COVID-19 announcements page.

For questions, please contact the circulation department at 414-229-4132 or libcirc@uwm.edu.


Tuition for 2020-21

May 27, 2020

While the Board of Regents will vote on tuition rates at its June 4-5 meeting, tuition for the 2020-21 school year is not expected to increase for most UW-Milwaukee students. That includes undergraduate students from Wisconsin and the surrounding states that are part of the Midwest Student Exchange Program: Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nebraska, North Dakota and Ohio.

Tuition is scheduled to rise 1.5% for undergraduate students from other states and countries and all graduate students.

Segregated fees and technology fees are currently under review. UWM is exploring a fee structure that enables the campus to provide services to students both on campus and via virtual formats. These fees pay for the technology infrastructure for online courses and modified student services. More information about segregated fees and technology fees will be available in July.


CARES grants for students distributed

May 19, 2020

The university notified more than 8,000 students Tuesday that they will receive grants as part of UWM’s distribution of nearly $8.5 million in Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act funding. The federal money is intended to help students struggling with expenses such as food, housing, course materials and child care after campus operations were disrupted by the virus.

Each grant will be worth $950, and students are expected to receive checks within two weeks.

More than 6,000 grant applications were submitted by the priority deadline of May 12. CARES grants are being given to eligible applicants as well as low-income students who did not apply for CARES grants but are eligible. Low-income status was determined by Pell Grant eligibility.

Students who did not qualify for CARES grants have two weeks to request reconsideration. After that, the remaining funds — currently about $665,000 — will be distributed to eligible students who applied after May 12.

Failure to complete a 2019-20 or 2020-21 Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form was the most common reason students were ruled ineligible for a CARES grant.

More information about CARES grants and an application form are available on the Dean of Students website.


Credit/no credit option available

May 15, 2020

Spring semester is wrapping up, and graduate and undergraduate students are reminded that they have the option to accept the letter grade they receive or convert their grade to credit/no credit in many of their classes.

Letter grades will be given for each course by May 21. Students have until July 3 to exercise the option to designate any eligible classes as credit/no credit. Each school and college has determined which classes are eligible for credit/no credit. That list is available online.

Students should contact their academic advisor to change their grade to credit/no credit. Letter grades of C-minus and above will be converted to “credit”; grades of D-plus and below will be converted to “no credit.” Neither will affect a student’s GPA.

This option is offered in recognition of the extraordinary circumstances produced by the coronavirus pandemic. Almost every university in the United States is taking similar action.

More information for undergraduate and graduate students can be found on the coronavirus website.

Free testing for COVID-19 offered

Free testing for COVID-19 is now available at two sites in Milwaukee. Testing will be available from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. every day, including weekends, at United Migrant Opportunity Services, 2701 S. Chase Ave., and Midtown Center, 5700 W. Capitol Drive.

The tests are available to everyone, but officials hope that anyone experiencing symptoms will get tested immediately. The tests take just a few minutes, and results will be available in about three days.

No appointment is needed for a test. Both walk-up and drive-through testing is available.

Those who need transportation should call 211 to be connected to a community health center that can provide transportation. Those with symptoms should not take public transportation to the testing sites.

Those who test positive will be contacted by health officials and contact tracers to determine who they had contact with. Officials are asking anyone who has had contact with someone with COVID-19 to self-isolate.

Financial hold limit increased

UWM has temporarily increased the enrollment balance limit for Summer and Fall 2020 terms to $2,500. Previously, students could not register for classes if they had an outstanding bill to the university of $10 or more. Students with an outstanding balance of up to $2,500 can sign up for courses while continuing to pay off their balance.

If you would like to enroll in courses but cannot pay off your balance, please contact the Accounts Receivable Office at bursar@uwm.edu to schedule a time to talk to a staff member and explore payment options. If you need to enroll for summer or fall classes but have not reviewed and signed a UWM credit agreement in PAWS, please visit UWM’s One Stop website for instructions.

How UWM intends to use CARES Act institutional funding

Under the federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act, UWM was allotted $16.9 million for pandemic relief. Half of that is going to students in emergency aid grants. The other half can be used by the institution to cover costs associated with the pandemic.

UWM intends to use the vast majority of the institutional portion of CARES Act funding – almost 95% – to reimburse university units that provided direct refunds or other payments to students. The remainder will be used to cover additional expenses associated with transitioning to remote learning and work, including computers, headsets and remote grading/testing software.

The breakdown is as follows:

  • Housing refunds: $4,100,879
  • Dining refunds: $3,175,020
  • COVID-19 leave payments to student employees: $630,000
  • Additional hardware and software for remote learning: $446,686
  • Parking refunds for students: $110,248

 


Apply for a CARES emergency grant by May 12

May 8, 2020

The priority deadline to apply for an emergency grant through the federal CARES Act is May 12.

Applications submitted after that will be considered on a rolling basis until funds run out. But because funding is limited, students are strongly urged to apply by May 12.

Grants are intended to help students who have been financially impacted by the disruption of campus operations to pay for expenses such as food, housing, course materials, laptops and technology, health care and child care. The CARES Act provides almost $8.5 million to be distributed to UWM students.

Students must have completed the FAFSA to be eligible for CARES Act funding, so do that first if you haven’t already.

More information, including a link to the application, can be found on the Dean of Students website. The application form can be completed in just a few minutes.

If you have questions about eligibility or the grant application process, email cares-grant@uwm.edu.


Town hall meeting set for Tuesday

May 4, 2020

Please join Chancellor Mark Mone and other campus leaders as we share information and invite questions during a town hall meeting for students at 2 p.m. Tuesday, May 5.

We will share the latest plans and actions taken in response to the coronavirus pandemic, including information about academics, the grants we have been administering via the federal government’s Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act and other support for students.

Your questions can be shared in advance or asked online during the student town hall by sending to: uwm-townhall@uwm.edu. We have created an FAQ resource that is updated daily on the UWM coronavirus webpage. Please check this comprehensive resource before submitting a town hall question; there are hundreds of answers available just a few clicks away.

Join the town hall meeting here on May 5 at 2 p.m. The same link can be used for viewing the meeting at a later time.

Need some help with Microsoft Teams? Here are the steps to view a Microsoft Teams Live event. A captioning function is available. Read this information from Microsoft to learn more about the captioning function.


Chancellor’s Update: May 5 student town hall meeting with campus leaders

April 30, 2020

Dear Students,

During these extraordinary times of COVID-19, we understand that changing circumstances can be unsettling and that you have been affected in many ways. Please join me, Provost Johannes Britz, Chief Student Affairs Officer Kelly Haag, Campus Health Officer Dr. Julie Bonner, Student Success Director Kay Eilers and Financial Aid Director Tim Opgenorth for a Microsoft Teams Live student town hall meeting at 2 p.m. on Tuesday, May 5.

We will share the latest plans and actions taken in response to COVID-19, including information about academics, our campuses and financial support for students such as the grants we have been administering via the federal government’s Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

Your voices are important and we invite your questions, which can be shared in advance or asked online during the student town hall by sending to: uwm-townhall@uwm.edu. We have created a FAQ resource that is updated daily on the UWM coronavirus webpage. Please check this comprehensive resource before submitting a town hall question; there are hundreds of answers available just a few clicks away.

Join the town hall meeting here on May 5 at 2 p.m. The same link can be used for viewing the meeting at a later time.

Need some help with Microsoft Teams? Here are the steps to view a Microsoft Teams Live event.

Please know that we are doing everything we can to support you. I look forward to our Town Hall.
Also please note the item below about off-campus housing and the reminder about applying for emergency aid for students through the CARES Act.

Best regards,

Mark A. Mone
Chancellor
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Off-campus housing

With the end of the spring semester approaching, students living off-campus may have questions about their leases or housing issues related to the pandemic.

These tips from the UWM Neighborhood Housing Office may help:

  • Communication between tenants and landlords is extremely important during this time. If you have any concerns with your rental, you should reach out to your landlord as soon as possible.
  • Communicate with your landlord in writing if you choose to move out before the end of your lease.

The University Legal Clinic is also available if you need help writing a notice to your landlord that you will be vacating the property or terminating your lease. Contact the University Legal Clinic for more information about services.

  • If you are having trouble paying your rent, ask for a rent deferment agreement in writing from your landlord. If you have received an eviction notice, contact the University Legal Clinic as soon as possible. Remember, Gov. Tony Evers has ordered a temporary ban on evictions in Wisconsin.

Landlords can hold tenants accountable for the entire rent and can send the security deposit to just one tenant. If one of your roommates vacate a lease early, remaining residents are still legally liable for the full rent.

Visit the Neighborhood Housing COVID-19 FAQs page for more information, or contact the office with any questions.

CARES grants for students

This is a reminder that new emergency aid for students is now available through the CARES Act, part of the federal COVID-19 relief effort. This allows UWM to support students who have been affected financially by the disruption of campus operations due to COVID-19. Funding is limited, so students are encouraged to apply as soon as possible.

To qualify for a CARES grant, students must have been financially affected by the disruption of campus operations. Eligible expenses include food, course materials, technology, health care and child care.

Some examples are:

  • Signing up for home internet service to complete your online coursework
  • Buying a laptop or other computer equipment to do coursework
  • Buying groceries after campus dining operations closed
  • Paying a fee to end your lease early
  • Paying rent for an apartment where you are no longer live

All applications submitted by May 12 will be considered. Applications submitted after May 12 will be considered on a rolling basis until funds run out. Grant amounts will be determined, in part, based on how many applications we receive.

If you have questions about eligibility or the grant application process, email cares-grant@uwm.edu. More information and a link to the application are available on the Dean of Students website.


Coronavirus update: Over $75,000 in emergency grants distributed

April 21, 2020

Emergency grants distributed

We know the coronavirus pandemic has created new financial challenges for many students. UWM is doing its best to help with emergency grants, low-cost and loaner laptops and distributions through the UWM Food Center & Pantry. Thus far, over $75,000 in emergency grants has been distributed to more than 100 students through the Dean of Students Office. We know the need is far greater, and the university’s Development team continues to raise money for additional grants. Students can apply for grants here.

Students who have already applied for grants can check on the status of their application by emailing dos@uwm.edu.

Volunteer from home

The Center for Community-Based Learning, Leadership, and Research has created a list of volunteer opportunities that follow social distancing guidelines so you help others while staying safe. Current opportunities include online tutoring, remote mentoring of refugees and checking in on senior citizens by phone. Check the center’s website regularly as the list of opportunities is updated each week.


Summer courses and fees

April 15, 2020

We announced last week that all classes this summer will be offered online or through distance education. This decision was made to ensure that students could continue their education, even if physical distance was still required.

With this adjustment in course delivery, UWM has modified course and segregated fees.

All courses that follow the traditional summer tuition schedule will have a reduced segregated fee and a reduced distance education fee. These fees will pay for the technology to offer classes online and modified student services. We want to ensure that all students have access to campus support services during this challenging time. Most students will pay the same or less under this modified fee schedule than they would have paid in fees last summer.

There will be no changes for students enrolled in courses that are charged fees in lieu of tuition.

Registration for summer classes is now open, and we encourage students to consider enrolling in summer courses. It’s a great way to make progress toward your degree while maintaining a flexible schedule. Additional details on summer tuition and fees are available on the Summer 2020 Tuition and Fee Page. For information on Summer 2020 financial aid, check out the One-Stop Summer 2020 financial aid page.

The university is committed to resuming in-person instruction as soon as possible, and we currently plan to offer in-person classes for Fall 2020. These classes would follow the standard tuition and fee schedule.

2020 census

UWM encourages you to participate in the 2020 census. The census only happens once every 10 years, and this is your chance to be counted! The tally affects representation in government and funding for education.

Watch this video, and then take the 2020 census online today using the address you live at most of the year. If you would normally be living in University Housing, you do not need to complete the census. You will be counted as part of UWM’s group quarters response.


UWM Coronavirus Update: Summer classes to be online

April 9, 2020

Summer classes to be online

Summer classes are a great way to continue to make progress toward your degree while maintaining a flexible schedule. This year, summer classes will be offered online or through remote instruction because we don’t know what the public health guidance related to coronavirus will be after May.

Currently, the state’s Safer at Home order prohibits public and private gatherings of people who are not part of a single household or living unit, with some limited exceptions outlined in the order.

Planning for summer classes continues, and we hope to share more information in the next few days.

Commencement rescheduled to October

Commencement for our May 2020 graduates has been rescheduled to Saturday, Oct. 10.

The university is considering whether it will hold one or two ceremonies on that day and will solicit feedback from graduating students to determine how many plan to participate.

In addition, some schools and colleges are discussing other ways to recognize graduates in May. More details will be shared as they are available.


Housing and dining refunds and coronavirus-related updates

April 2, 2020

Housing and dining refunds

Housing and dining refunds for students who recently moved out of the residence halls will be processed by the end of April, if not sooner. Students who have credits on their accounts will have checks mailed to their permanent address on record in PAWS.

As of this spring, the Cashier’s Office no longer processes refunds by electronic funds transfer. It is currently processing checks two times per week while maintaining social distancing between employees.

Room reimbursements will be issued for the period from March 23 to May 16 for most students living in residence halls, regardless of the day they move out.

Students who lived in Kenilworth and have since vacated were being billed monthly. They will not be billed in April and May, and they will receive a credit for the period from March 23 to March 31.

Please note that any balances owed to the university will be deducted from housing and dining refunds before checks are issued. University Housing is sending additional information to students with residence hall contracts. You can also visit the University Housing COVID-19 site to contact staff with a question.

Segregated Fees

Many students have asked about refunds for Spring 2020 segregated fees, noting that they are not on campus to take advantage of the services those fees provide.

Segregated fees provide funding for a wide range of services, including Norris Health Center, University Counseling Services, University Recreation and other student engagement services, including Student Involvement, the Women’s Resource Center, Military and Veterans Resource Center, the Center for Inclusive Excellence and the LGBTQ+ Resource Center. These services are still operating, although they may look a little different right now. For example, University Recreation is offering online fitness classes and recreation clinics . University Counseling is offering telehealth-based counseling.

Many of the units mentioned in the preceding paragraph, along with the Graduate Student Resource Network and UWM Student Association, are collaborating on a virtual student union, which is a Canvas course where Panthers can connect and build community through discussions, one-on-one conversations and social media. Students will be invited to join the Canvas course next week via their UWM email account.

Segregated fees also pay for maintaining buildings, such as the UWM Student Union, the Klotsche Center and related utility costs. These buildings and services have costs that can’t quickly be reduced, such as heat, maintenance and professional staff. And, we want to make sure that the buildings and services are available when students return to campus. For this reason, UW System has determined no UW campus will refund segregated fees for the spring semester.

It’s too soon for us to say whether the COVID-19 situation will continue beyond spring semester or what its total financial impact will be. While some units are seeing savings with providing online services, others are facing a loss of non-seg fee revenue from things like locker fees, dining and space rentals, which also help support their budgets. And, after years of state budget cuts, UWM has little in reserve to cover these losses.

As we look ahead, campus leaders are working with the UWM Student Association to determine adjustments to future segregated fees. If you are concerned about these fees, we encourage you to contact your SA representatives so that your voice will be heard.

Course illness policy

We wanted to let you know of guidance given to faculty and instructional staff on absences due to illness for the rest of this semester.

We have asked faculty and instructional staff not to require students to provide excuses from health care professionals when missing class or assignments due to illness. We understand that health care systems are becoming overburdened and may not be able to provide excuses.

We also have asked instructors to be flexible with students whose families have been affected by COVID-19.  We recognize that you may be managing care for relatives who are ill or otherwise need your support, and that you may be dealing with other complications related to the pandemic.

We ask that you keep your instructors informed about your circumstances and let them know if you need help or accommodations. We’re all in this together, and we want to support you.

Grading and credit/no credit

On Monday, we shared with you a new emergency grading accommodation for undergraduates.

All enrolled students will receive a letter grade in each enrolled Spring 2020 course by the grade deadline of May 21. Students will have until July 3 to designate courses to be graded on a credit/no credit basis or to keep the grade they received.

The earlier email you received with information on the policy wrongly referred to it as an “Emergency Interim Pass/Fail Grading Policy.” It is not a pass/fail policy, but an option to take a class for credit/no credit. We apologize for any confusion.

Please consult with your academic advisor with questions about this policy and procedures.

Grad student accommodations

Similarly, we have new interim policies affecting graduate students.

Grading

The Emergency Graduate Grading Accommodation Policy expands the credit/no credit option for graduate students. This will apply to eligible courses with letter grades and to courses with satisfactory/unsatisfactory grades. Schools and colleges will identify courses that are ineligible for credit/no credit grading by April 14. Students will be assigned a letter or satisfactory/unsatisfactory grade in each course by the grading deadline of May 21. Graduate students may elect to change a spring 2020 course to credit/no credit on or before July 3. For more details, see the policy posted here.

Time Clock

The Emergency Time Clock Accommodation for Graduate Students extends the timeline to complete doctoral and master’s degrees by one year for students who entered their programs before or in the Spring 2020 semester. The COVID-19 emergency also will be regarded as an extenuating circumstance for all current doctoral students to request up to a one-year extension of the deadline to complete the preliminary examination. For more details on the policy, click here.


Chancellor’s Update: Updates on Interim Grading Policy, Refunds and Building Access

March 30, 2020

Dear Students,

The disruptive impact of the COVID-19 pandemic continues to be part of our daily lives and, as students, you are particularly affected as we shift today to alternative course delivery. There are a few updates I’d like to share with you about our new interim student grading policy, clarification on refunds, student assistance and access to campus buildings.

Emergency Grading Accommodation – Interim policy
Many students have asked whether we will have a credit/no credit grading policy this semester. The short answer is yes. All undergraduate students will receive a letter grade in each of their Spring 2020 courses by the grade deadline of May 21. Students will have until July 3 to exercise their option to designate each eligible Spring 2020 course to be graded on a credit/no credit basis or to keep the grade they received. Students who earn a C- or better in a course may opt for the credit/no credit option for that course. The current limitations on the number of courses/credits for the credit/no credit option are being suspended for the spring semester. By April 14, each school/college will designate a limited number of courses as ineligible for the credit/no credit grading option due to licensing/certification/accreditation requirements. Students will have until July 3 to designate classes as credit/no credit by downloading a form and submitting it to their academic advisor as an email attachment from their UWM email account.

For details, please see the new interim policy on emergency grading accommodation for undergraduate studentsStudents should consult with their academic advisor with questions about this policy and procedures. A similar policy for graduate students is being finalized, and we will share details tomorrow.

I encourage you to put forth the full effort in each of your classes to successfully complete your coursework while we have this grading accommodation interim policy in place.

Housing & Segregated Fees and Tuition
Last week, we announced that we will provide prorated refunds for housing, dining and parking permit fees for the remainder of the spring semester for students who have vacated their respective campuses.

To clarify that announcement, while we are making those refunds, there will be no pro-rated refunds for tuition and segregated fees. We continue to provide instruction through alternative means to safeguard the health and safety of our students, your families, our employees and our communities. In addition, UW System has determined that segregated fees at UW campuses will not be refunded. These fees provide support for critical services to students, including health care, student organizations, and fixed costs such as building construction. Please see our FAQ here.

Student Assistance
We continue to work on support for students during the pandemic. This includes:

  • Financial assistance from the Student Emergency Grant Fund, administered by the Dean of Students Office, to help with expenses for distance learning, food, housing or moving expenses and emergency travel
  • Groceries from the UWM Food Center and Pantry
  • Short-term, interest-free personal loans from the UW Credit Union

The campus programs listed above have been in high demand, and, thus, availability of funding is subject to change. We will continue our efforts to raise funds for these programs. To learn more about these resources, please see here.

Reminder on Access to UWM Buildings
In response to the State of Wisconsin’s Safer at Home order and to safeguard you, friends and loved ones, we have closed access to academic and administrative buildings. For the remainder of the semester, facilities will be accessible only to individuals with keys or other access to unlock the building. Students who need to get into academic buildings to retrieve personal items should contact their instructors, who will work with the deans of the schools and colleges to arrange access.

Please visit our COVID-19 website often. New information and helpful FAQs are added every day. We care about you and sympathize with the unprecedented changes you are facing during this COVID-19 crisis.

Best regards,

Mark A. Mone, PhD
Chancellor
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee


Compensation for Student Employees

March 26, 2020

Dear Students,

We care about you and sympathize with the unprecedented changes you are facing during this COVID crisis. The way you will engage in learning, the parameters of Governor Evers’ Safer at Home order and campus life are all distinctly different compared to just a few weeks ago.

We also know that those who had campus jobs and have not been able to continue in those jobs are struggling to pay bills. I am pleased to announce that we are going to provide a one-time COVID 19 leave payment to provide some assistance to UWM’s student workers. UWM is providing the funding for these payments. Here are the details:

  • The payment will be $200 ($100/week for two weeks).
  • The payment will be effective for the April A payroll, which begins on Sunday, March 29, ends on Saturday, April 11 and pays on Thursday, April 23.
  • We will pay all active student hourly appointments who have logged hours in HRS on or since February 1, 2020.
  • Each student employee will be paid $200 for the April A pay period. For those student workers who have logged hours during the April A pay period, they will receive this payment in addition to their logged hours during the same pay period.

This will be a one-time action to help UWM student employees who have not been able to continue in their jobs.

The pandemic has caused unprecedented and unexpected changes to our operating budgets. UWM is not unique in this regard. The majority of colleges and universities – both in Wisconsin and nationwide – are facing the same circumstances. For those reasons, we will be ending all student hourly appointments in the coming weeks, with exceptions provided for those units in which student employees are helping to provide ongoing services. You have already heard or will hear from your supervisor on whether your appointment is ending. We view this as a relatively short-term circumstance while the virus is forcing most people to stay home. It is our sincere hope that when isolation requirements are lifted, and the UWM campus is again a lively place for instruction, research and community engagement, student employees will return to campus jobs.

In addition, we continue to work on and share information about additional financial resources available to students. These include:

  • Financial assistance from the Student Emergency Grant Fund, administered by the Dean of Students Office, to help with expenses for distance learning, food, housing or moving expenses and emergency travel
  • Groceries from the UWM Food Center and Pantry
  • Short-term, interest-free personal loans from the UW Credit Union

To learn more about how to access these resources, please see here.
In addition, we continue to advocate to our federal elected officials for student assistance, and are asking faculty, staff, alumni and other UWM supporters to donate to the Student Emergency Fund and UWM Food Center and Pantry.

I realize this is a stressful time due to the rapid pace of change and significant amount of uncertainty. It is our sincere hope that the news of additional compensation provides some comfort and assistance. We are here to support you in your ongoing academic and personal success, especially as you gear up to resume courses next week. I wish you good health and will continue to share additional updates as developments occur.

Best regards,

Chancellor Mark A. Mone


Commencement Postponed (Not Canceled), State Order and Legislative Actions

March 24, 2020

Dear Students,

Over these past few weeks of the COVID-19 outbreak, each day has brought new changes. Today is no exception. I have a promising update about UWM Commencement for the class of 2020, news about how Gov. Tony Evers’ executive decision impacts UWM, and a brief update on our advocacy efforts to receive aid.

Postponement – NOT Cancelation – of Commencement

In my March 20 update messages, I shared the unfortunate news that our May 17 in-person commencement would be canceled. What I didn’t spotlight enough then are the efforts underway to plan for alternative ceremonies. We are actively seeking future dates to hold in-person commencements for our Class of 2020. While we do not yet have dates determined, we are looking at the possibilities of adding ceremonies in October or November or expanding our Dec. 20 ceremonies. Availability of the UWM Panther Arena, whose scheduling is controlled by the Wisconsin Center District, will be a factor in the dates we ultimately select. For May, we are asking UWM schools and colleges to consider what limited, interim and virtual recognition within academic units would entail. Please note that eligible graduates will still graduate on time; there is no postponement of graduation (just the ceremonies).

State Safer at Home Order

Today, Gov. Tony Evers directed the Department of Health Services to issue a Safer at Home order that prohibits all nonessential travel, with some exceptions. The order goes into effect at 8 a.m. on Wednesday, March 25 and remains in effect until April 24. Please know that the City of Milwaukee Health Department has also issued a Stay at Home order. UWM is subject to both the state and city orders.

Both orders allow UWM and other educational institutions to continue to operate for the purposes of alternative/online learning, critical research, and essential functions as determined by the institution. At UWM, deans and division heads have authority to determine what functions are essential and need to be performed onsite at UWM, whether full-time, part-time, or periodically. These decisions also may change from week to week. We will be working to provide deans and division heads more guidance on how to make these important decisions consistent with the letter and spirit of the orders.

There is also a Department of Administration request for UWM and other universities/colleges to provide housing space for COVID-19 emergency operations. We are permitted under both the state and city orders to continue moving students out of University Housing. The safety of our students, families and staff is our top priority, and we have carefully orchestrated our move-out process to align with social distancing standards and other healthy practices. Further details are available in the modules below this message.

UWM and UW System Advocacy Efforts to Receive Aid

Yesterday, I joined UW System President Ray Cross in asking Congress to include emergency funding for UWM and other UW System schools in the economic relief legislation it is considering in response to the coronavirus pandemic. In my letters to U.S. Sens. Tammy Baldwin and Ron Johnson, I emphasized the important role UWM has in our community as an institution committed to our access and research mission. Details on our specific requests are included in President Cross’ letter to both senators.

We are in a period when great patience, empathy and understanding are of the highest value. None of us has a playbook for the pandemic that is wreaking havoc on our daily lives. What I can assure you of is that everything we do is grounded by our guiding values and the maxim of what is best for our students, faculty, staff and UWM during these extraordinary times.

Additional important updates on campus operations and services are found below.

Best regards,
Mark A. Mone
Chancellor
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Low-cost computers for students

Students who need a computer when classes resume online or through alternative delivery on Monday have an opportunity to purchase one at low cost from UWM Surplus, which has a limited number of used Apple and Dell laptops and desktops for sale. The computers are available only for UWM students and cost between $20 to $50.

  • Students must pay cash.
    Dell devices have Linux installed and the student may install Windows by going to this website.
  • Interested students should contact UWM Surplus manager Andrew Avery-Johnson at  averyjoh@uwm.edu or 414-659-1391. He is available weekdays from 8 a.m.- 4 p.m. You will also schedule an appointment to pick up the computer.

Computers must be picked up at the University Services and Research Building, north of North 1st Street and West Capitol Drive.

At the scheduled pick-up time, Avery-Johnson will meet the student buyer outside the “Surplus Door” entrance at the University Services and Research Building.

Social distancing measures will be in place. A computer will be set down outside the entrance and the student can then pick it up.

Students can also contact the Dean of Students Office if they do not have access to technology and need support.

All events canceled through May 31

All university-sponsored events are canceled through May 31 in response to city and state orders limiting public gatherings during the coronavirus health emergency. This includes all events for the rest of the spring semester, other than those that have been moved online or are being held by alternate means.

  • Staff are asked to update event calendars by doing the following:
    Add the word “CANCELED” in all caps before the name of the event in the title field.
  • Add the sentence “THIS EVENT HAS BEEN CANCELED” in all caps as the first line of the event description.

A select list of major events that have been canceled, as well as other now-virtual events, can be found here.

Moving out of residence halls

The health and safety of students and their families, as well the rest of the UWM community, are top priorities as students move out of residence halls this week. Move-outs are being scheduled to space them out and maintain social-distancing protocols. You can find details about this in the emails University Housing sent to residents on Friday, March 20, and on this website. Residents who are concerned about travel can ask University Housing staff to pack their belongings and have them stored.

Items left at Klotsche Center

For the safety of the campus community, the Klotsche Center is currently closed until further notice. As a result, no access is permitted for retrieving items from lockers. UWM will provide information on the steps and timeline for retrieving items once it is determined that it is safe to reopen Klotsche.

Online voter registration extended

The deadline to register online to vote in the Wisconsin presidential preference primary has been extended to March 30.

You must be registered to vote to request an absentee ballot. The deadline to request an absentee ballot is April 2, though the Wisconsin Elections Commission is urging anyone planning to vote to request one be mailed to them as soon as possible at the My Vote Wisconsin website. As of Tuesday, the Elections Commission said it was working to reinstate online registration.


Updates on Commencement and University Housing

March 20, 2020

Dear Students, 

We understand the challenges and sacrifices you are facing during these extraordinary and unprecedented times. The spread of COVID-19 has compelled us to make difficult choices that put the safety of our students, their families, our employees and our communities first. This was not the semester anyone expected. 

At the same time, we are dedicated to helping our students progress. We are especially committed to assisting students meet the requirements for graduation this semester through alternative means of course delivery. As a reminder to all students, there will be no further in-person instruction this semester. Alternative delivery of instruction begins March 30. 

In-Person Commencement and Honors Ceremonies Canceled
Given the circumstances facing our university, our communities, the nation and the world, we have decided we cannot hold our in-person graduation ceremonies on May 17, nor Honors Commencement on May 11. These decisions are consistent with Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers’ executive order barring mass gatherings.   

We know how profoundly disappointing this is for those graduating, as well as your families, supporters and friends. These decisions are not made lightly, but with the best interests of our campus community and our students’ families and loved ones in mind, especially since many people would make travel plans to attend. We appreciate your understanding of this difficult decision. 

Eligible graduates should apply for graduation in the normal manner at https://uwm.edu/secu/com_cer/. Students who fulfill the requirements will still earn their degree and receive their diploma. The lack of an in-person ceremony does not change your significant accomplishment, and you deserve to celebrate that. We are exploring other ways to honor our graduates and will communicate when those plans are known. 

Refunds of Housing Fees and Updates on Tuition and Other Fees 
In response to the COVID-19 public health crisis and its impacts to UWM students and families, UWM will refund the prorated charges for housing and dining for the remainder of the spring semester for students who vacate their on-campus student housing (and do not receive a COVID Accommodation to remain on-campus).  

Prorated reimbursements will exclude the period of the originally scheduled spring break and shall be issued by the close of the spring academic semester, though efforts are being made to expedite the refund process. Crediting these funds toward future semesters in lieu of a refund is not an option because of rules related to the awarding of federal financial aid. There is a team working on other fee issues, and we will share updates as they become available. 

We also have extended the Spring 2020 payment deadline. UWM will not assess late payment fees or interest charges from March 20 to June 2. We are committed to working with our students and families to the best of our ability through these challenging times. Students who cannot make payments on time are encouraged to contact the Bursar’s office at bursar@uwm.edu 

University Housing to Close
We are closing University Housing with the exception of those individuals who do not have other options. All residents will receive a separate email from University Housing with details later today explaining how and when they can retrieve their belongings. 

We know how invested you are in your futures, and what a disruption has been placed on your lives and on your learning. Your continued patience and understanding are most appreciated. 

Additional important updates on campus operations and services are found below. 

Best regards, 

Mark A. Mone, PhD
Chancellor 

Online or alternative delivery of instruction

As a reminder, UWM classes will be taught online or through an alternate mode of instruction following the extended break period, starting Monday, March 30 through the end of the semester. This allows you to continue your academic progress during the pandemic while promoting the health and safety of our campus community.  

Faculty and staff are using the extended spring break period to prepare for the transition. If they haven’t done so already, your instructors will be reaching out shortly with more details.  

Don’t forget that you can also reach your academic advisors by phone or email.  

Campus access

While academic buildings are locked for the rest of the semester, we understand that many graduate and undergraduate students may still need to access facilities for research, lab work or other activities related to their education. Please contact the faculty and staff you work with for details on building access.  

Students who need to access buildings to retrieve personal belongings should contact the dean of their school or college to coordinate. UWM Police will not be letting students into buildings. 

Libraries closing

While libraries at all three UWM campuses are closed, you can continue to access online databases, articles and e-books. Many publishers are also providing free, online access to their content during the coronavirus pandemic. Reference support is still available online.  

For students who need computer access, Campus Technology Services is developing a program to distribute about 200 repurposed laptops to students at no or little cost. Plans are also in the works to provide access to equipment such as cameras, audio recorders, special calculators and tripods. More information will be provided when available.  

UWM food pantry

The UWM Food Center and Pantry hopes to receive a delivery from their food bank partner, Feeding America, in time for the pantry’s next scheduled distribution on Thursday, March 26. About 200 bags of food totaling more than 2,000 pounds were handed out yesterday. Visit the food pantry’s website for more information. 

Campus practices regarding COVID-19 infections

The City of Milwaukee Health Department notified the University of one case of COVID-19 in a UWM employee early this week. Local health departments are following state and federal public health guidelines related to contact investigations. With the majority of students and employees not on campus individuals should follow the information related to COVID-19 of their local community and local health department.  

Student and employee health matters are confidential, and while UWM may have a count of employees taking COVID-19 leave, they may be doing so for reasons other than illness, such as child care.


Chancellor’s Update: Continuation of Online Instruction and Facilities Updates

March 18, 2020

Dear Students,

I write with the latest developments on the COVID-19 pandemic and its effect on UWM students and operations. We have made several decisions to promote your health and safety and to help limit the spread of the virus.

UWM will extend its delivery of online or alternative delivery of instruction starting Monday, March 30 to the end of the spring semester. Yesterday, Governor Evers issued an emergency order that allows universities to continue instruction and operations but prohibits gatherings of 10 or more people in a single room or enclosed space. For this reason, online and alternative modes of delivery are ideal ways for you to continue and complete your academic progress this semester. We realize the change to alternate instruction delivery will impact students who have been living in our residence halls. Those students will be contacted by University Housing with additional details.

We have also, as of noon today on all three campuses, begun strictly limiting most onsite, non-essential operations. This includes closing most offices and services that are open to walk-in traffic and having staff provide services remotely as they can do so. Please note that our campuses are not closed. Indeed, some employees will continue to provide critical in-person services, such as caring for students living in our residence halls, providing core IT and networking services to campus, providing library services, continuing payroll operations and providing security for those accessing campus.

There will be impact on student employees, many of whom are unable to perform their duties remotely. Student employees are a valuable part of our workforce, and as operational planning is solidified, supervisors will be in contact with employees as to their status. We discussed with UW System whether it would be possible to pay student hourly employees per their normal schedules even if they cannot work remotely or to extend COVID-19 leave to student employees who are not ordinarily eligible for paid leave. Unfortunately, given state rules and the financial exigencies created by this situation, we cannot pay our student hourly employees who are not working, and COVID-19 leave will only be provided to employees who otherwise receive paid leave benefits. We are exploring alternative student hourly employment opportunities and will share more information as this develops.

Changes for UWM facilities and services include the following:

At noon today, academic buildings were locked and for the remainder of the semester are accessible only to individuals with key or other access to unlock the building. We understand many graduate and undergraduate students are actively involved in research activities that take place in our facilities; the faculty and research staff you work with will contact you to discuss additional details. If there are special needs for unlocking a building after that time, individuals should contact UWM Police at 414-229-4627. Those individuals will need to have appropriate employment permissions to enter the building and those employees should be prepared to show a University ID.

The library locations on all three campuses, which have internet access, will remain open to students as previously announced. Due to the Governor’s order, UWM staff will be monitoring admission (so please bring your student ID card) and distancing to ensure we are following the gathering protocol mentioned above. At the Golda Meir Library, only the Daniel M. Soref Learning Commons in the first-floor west wing of the will be open. Library staff will gladly retrieve items from the general collection, the Music Library, the Curriculum Collection, and Media & Reserves, as requested. Access to online databases, articles, and e-books also continues uninterrupted. The American Geographical Society Library, Archives, and Special Collections are closed at this time. Hours for all libraries, including those on our 2-year campuses, can be found here.

The Klotsche Center will be closed starting today. This will include all athletics practice and training areas as well.

The Norris Health Center will continue in-person medical services and the dispensary will also be open. All students must call in advance, (414) 229-4716, for any services, as this is a rapidly evolving situation. Patients scheduled for routine appointments will be contacted to reschedule.

University Counseling Services will not be open for in-person services starting Wednesday March 18. Clients that have upcoming scheduled visits will be contacted for alternative options. Phone lines, 414 229-4133, will remain open during regular business hours. For mental health crises, during regular weekday business hours, please call 414-229-4133 for a crisis consultation. For after hours-crisis assistance, please use these resources.

Effective immediately, Survivor Support and Victim Advocacy services will be closed for in-person services. Students may call 414-229-4582 or email victimadvocacy@uwm.edu for assistance.

The Children’s Learning Center will close at the end of the day on Thursday, March 19.

The Union, Lubar, NWQ, and Pavilion parking garages will be closed since staffing is needed to keep them open.

Residence halls will remain open for students approved to stay including those who are not able to return home or have other reasons for remaining on campus. Thus, very limited services in the residence halls will remain available. As stated above, in light of the decision to move to alternative instruction delivery, all residents will receive communication from University Housing on other details.

The Student Union has been closed, effective at noon today.

We have learned that the City of Milwaukee Health Department has confirmed one case of COVID-19 in a UWM employee. Given the wide reach across communities, we expect to have more cases confirmed in the coming days. Due to respect of the privacy of such employees we will not be identifying them. This is not a time to panic, but a time to stay true to our guiding values to be a caring, compassionate and collegial community.

Please continue to follow recommended public health guidelines, which include:

    • Clean your hands often
    • Maintain 6 feet of separation from others
    • Stay home if you’re sick
    • Cover coughs and sneezes
    • If you are an older person, stay home and away from other people
    • Avoid social gatherings in groups of more than 10 people
    • Avoid unnecessary travel

Additional updates and resources can be found at the UWM Information on the Coronavirus website. I encourage you to check this often as UWM is updating it frequently.

I realize this is a stressful time due to frequent changes and uncertainty, and it is not what any of us were expecting for this semester. We are working to address your concerns as quickly as possible. Your ongoing success and progress to graduation are fundamental to your futures, and we know that interruption of that progress is disorienting. We are doing all that we can to continue your academic progress as smoothly as possible under these unexpected circumstances, although we understand that some academic experiences may be altered due to the pandemic. I wish you good health and please know we will share additional updates as further developments occur.

Best regards,
Chancellor Mark A. Mone


UWM employee COVID-19 update

March 17, 2020

Dear Faculty and Staff,

With COVID-19 spreading rapidly, your health and safety, as well as that of our students, are paramount. To help control the spread of the virus, we will be strictly limiting all onsite, non-essential operations and moving most operations to virtual or remote methods no later than noon tomorrow. This includes closing all operations and services that are open to walk-in traffic and having all employees who are able to work remotely do so.

There may be limited circumstances in which some employees need to continue working on campus and can do so in secure, private areas, such as research labs. Deans and division heads will grant permission to these employees to continue their work on a case-by-case basis. Those decisions are subject to change in light of the rapidly evolving situation.

Please note that campus is not closed, but we are closing and limiting access for many areas to limit exposure to COVID-19. Indeed, some employees will need to provide critical services, such as caring for students living in our residence halls, providing core IT and networking services to campus, continuing payroll operations and providing security for those accessing campus. But, all who can work remotely must do so, and we ask all supervisors to make those determinations as quickly as possible.

We also realize there are some employees who are not required to work onsite and who cannot work remotely. Those employees may be eligible for special COVID-19 leave, which was announced today by UW System. This provides up to 80 hours of paid leave for employees who can’t perform their assigned duties during the COVID-19 pandemic emergency due to the following:

  • inability to work remotely
  • self-quarantine
  • self-isolation
  • illness
  • care of an immediate family member
  • child/elder care due to school and day care closures

Delivery of instruction to students, which is work that can be performed remotely, does not qualify for COVID-19 leave without extraordinary circumstances and the availability of course coverage.

Faculty, academic staff, university staff, limited appointees, employees-in-training, graduate assistants and temporary employees are eligible for COVID-19 leave, with the approval of campus administration. The leave may be used prior to using any other type of accrued leave and will be available until the president of UW System determines the pandemic emergency has concluded.

I also want to let you know that the City of Milwaukee Health Department has confirmed one case of COVID-19 in a UWM employee. Like all large institutions in Milwaukee, we expect to have more cases confirmed in the coming days. We want to respect the privacy of these employees and will not be identifying them. This is not a time to panic, but a time to stay committed to our core values of treating everyone with respect and maintaining an environment free from discrimination. It’s also a time to support and care for each other. In the balance of this employee update, you will find more details on testing, access to campus facilities, updates to our travel guidelines and other information to help you through this time.

Mark A. Mone
Chancellor
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee

Where do I get tested?

If you recently traveled to an area with community spread or have been in contact with someone who has COVID-19 and has symptoms, the Milwaukee Health Department urges you to call your primary care provider. Do not seek care without calling ahead because doctor’s offices and hospitals are overwhelmed. More information on testing can be found here.

Monitoring your health

Symptoms

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the following symptoms may appear two to 14 days after exposure: fever, cough and shortness of breath. If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19 and develop symptoms, call your health care provider for medical advice before going to a health care facility.

How to Protect Yourself
The CDC and White House are urging measures to protect yourself including:
Clean your hands often
Avoid close contact
Stay home if you’re sick
Cover coughs and sneezes
If you are an older person, stay home and away from other people
Avoid social gatherings in groups of 10 people or more
Avoid unnecessary travel

Important resources
Besides the CDC, updated information on the coronavirus crisis and response can be found at the following websites:
Milwaukee Health Department
Wisconsin Department of Health Services

Campus access changes

The UWM campus is not closed. However, by tomorrow at noon, we will be closing and limiting access to many areas to limit exposure to COVID-19. Those areas include the Klotsche Center, a facility for which we’ve received many inquiries.

Access to academic buildings
Starting around noon on Wednesday, buildings will be locked and accessible only to individuals with keys or other access to unlock the building. If there are special needs for unlocking a building after that time, individuals should contact UWM Police at 414-229-4627. UWM Police will continue to patrol the campus and provide dispatch services 24 hours a day, seven days a week.

Parking
The following changes will go into effect by noon Wednesday:

The Union, Lubar, NWQ and Pavilion garages will be closed because staffing is needed to keep them open.

All outdoor lots will be open, in addition to the Sandburg and EMS garages. Open parking areas will be free for any UWM employees who need to come to campus.
Individuals may not park vehicles in UWM parking facilities overnight without express permission.

Change in travel policy

Effective today, UWM is prohibiting any employee from booking university-sponsored and paid travel until better information is known about when travel may resume.

As a reminder, UWM announced on Monday that all employees who have traveled to states with sustained community transmission must stay out of the workplace for 14 days. States with verified sustained community transmission now include Illinois, California, New York and Washington. This means UWM employees who live in Illinois must make arrangements with their supervisor, such as working remotely, to follow this guideline.

Who needs to self-quarantine?
Anyone who has traveled internationally to countries with widespread transmission, according to the CDC, and/or traveled in the United States to states with sustained community transmission. The CDC is updating this list regularly. Visit this page, and after the U.S. map, click the States + bar to reveal the state list. Look under the Community Transmission column for states marked yes.

Should I travel for a personal trip?
Should you decide to travel, be aware of the risks to your health. If you are returning from countries with widespread transmission according to the CDC and/or U.S. states with sustained community transmission, you are prohibited from returning to the workplace and must self-quarantine for 14 days, even if you do not exhibit symptoms.

Correction: Deadline for voting absentee by mail in the April 7 election

Because of the COVID-19 crisis, voters are strongly urged to act now to vote absentee for the April 7 spring election and presidential preference primary. Wednesday, March 18, is the deadline to register to vote by mail or online for the presidential preference primary and spring election. After this date, voters must register in person in the municipal clerk’s office or at the polling place.

The deadline for registered voters to request an absentee ballot be mailed to you is the Thursday before the election, April 2. However, the Wisconsin Elections Commission urges voters not to wait due to possible delays in mail delivery.
You can request a ballot be mailed to you. For more information, visit the Wisconsin Elections Commission website.

Community news

Milwaukee Journal Sentinel: Latest coronavirus updates
TMJ4: Froedtert South opens drive-thru coronavirus testing site in Kenosha County
Fox 6: 11 Milwaukee County leaders issue order closing bars, restaurants except for carryout, delivery

News links

Insider: UWM professor talks about challenges of online teaching
Newsweek: UWM epidemiologist says Europe travel ban will have limited effect 


Chancellor’s Update: Study Abroad Programs, Travel and Campus Operations

March 12, 2020

Dear Faculty, Staff and Students,

As we near our extended Spring Break (March 15-29), I want to thank you for your understanding, resilience and patience as we continue to safeguard the health and well-being of our campus communities.

Today, Governor Tony Evers declared a public health emergency for the state of Wisconsin. This announcement is another reason why UWM is responding swiftly and decisively as the COVID-19 crisis continues to evolve in our state and further abroad.

At this time, there are no confirmed cases of the virus on any of our campuses. We received the good news today that the UWM Foundation employee who was tested earlier in the week for COVID-19 received confirmation that they are not infected with the virus.

Since my last message, we have additional information about travel restrictions, steps for students to take as they depart campus, and campus operations.

Study Abroad and Travel
All study abroad programs currently underway are being suspended and all 63 students who are currently overseas are being recalled. Students returning from countries designated as severely impacted will be required to self-quarantine for 14 days. This currently includes China, Iran, South Korea, Japan and 26 European countries identified by the CDC as Warning Level 3.

Due to the changed alert level for 26 European countries being elevated to a Level 3 Warning, faculty-led summer study abroad programs in the summer of 2020 will be canceled to the following countries: France, Germany, Italy, Japan and Spain. We are evaluating the remaining faculty-led study abroad summer programs to other countries.

All upcoming university-sponsored travel for students is being canceled through the end of the semester. This includes university-sponsored Spring Break trips, but does not include NCAA athletics which will be subject to guidelines established by the Horizon League and the NCAA.

All upcoming university-sponsored travel for employees, both domestic and international, is being canceled through April 10, with limited exceptions from the Office of the Provost.

We continue to strongly discourage employees and students from any non-essential travel outside of Wisconsin until the end of the semester. This does not apply to out-of-state students who are returning home for the extended Spring Break. If you do opt to travel, please know that there are health risks involved. If you travel outside of Wisconsin to a U.S. state where the CDC has determined that sustained community transmission is occurring, the Wisconsin DHS recommends that you self-quarantine at home for 14 days. Other travelers should self-monitor for 14 days for fever, cough and difficulty breathing.

Preparing for a Period of Alternate Instruction
As announced yesterday, UWM is proceeding with plans for a minimum of two weeks (March 30 – April 10) of alternate delivery of instruction (including online). All in-person classes are suspended during this time.

Students who are returning home or to an off-campus residence during the extended Spring Break and the additional two weeks while classes are being delivered alternatively are being asked to take essential items such as laptops, medications, and items related to coursework. While the residence halls are not closing, we are discouraging trips back and forth to retrieve items.

Campus Operations
All three UWM campuses – Milwaukee, UWM at Waukesha and UWM at Washington County – will remain open. At the Milwaukee campus, the Golda Meir Library, Klotsche Center, UWM Children’s Center and the Student Union will remain open at this time.

UWM Commencement
At this time, UWM plans to hold its two commencement ceremonies on May 17. We will keep you informed if this changes.

Student Employees
Student employees should work with their supervisors on their planned work schedules over the extended break period and beyond. Student employees are not prohibited or discouraged from working at their UWM jobs under our current COVID-19 guidelines. However, UWM will respect students’ decisions not to work during the extended break and beyond. Additional information will be shared if the situation changes.

UWM Employees
All employees should continue working as they normally would unless advised differently by their supervisor, director or dean. Please see the HR FAQs for further information.

Care and Respect
This is a challenging time and many individuals are feeling nervous or frightened. We are a campus community that cares for one another. Any forms of discrimination or racism will not be tolerated and the reporting of such actions will be handled with great concern.

The one thing all of us can do is follow recommendations on the best ways to avoid contracting the virus.

Precautionary Measures
The best ways to avoid contracting COVID-19:

  • Wash hands often with soap and water
  • Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick
  • Cover your mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing, and cough/sneeze into your elbow
  • Practice social distancing

If You Develop Symptoms:

  • Stay home; do not go to work, class or public areas
  • Separate yourself from people and animals in your home
  • Avoid sharing personal household items
  • Wash your hands often
  • Clean “high-touch” surfaces every day
  • Avoid using public transportation, ride-shares, taxis, etc.

We are carefully monitoring the COVID-19 crisis as the situation continues to change rapidly. Additional campus updates will be shared via email, the COVID-19 website, our FAQs and social media. We are striving to keep everyone safe and disruptions to studies as minimal as possible.

Best Regards,

Mark A. Mone
Chancellor
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee


COVID-19 Updates on Classes and Campus Operations

March 11, 2020

Dear Faculty, Staff and Students,

First, I want to reinforce that the health and well-being of our campus communities are paramount. Since my message to you yesterday, we have additional information regarding our campus’ response to the COVID-19 virus, along with important news on how classes will be taught after spring break.

Today, the World Health Organization (WHO) declared COVID-19 a pandemic. Today’s WHO announcement underscores why UWM is moving quickly and decisively to prepare our students, faculty and staff for this unfolding worldwide crisis.

I want to emphasize that there currently is NOT a confirmed case of the virus on any of our campuses.

The reason classes and other scheduled events and activities will continue this week through Saturday, as originally scheduled, is because there is no immediate threat due to COVID-19 to the health of our students, faculty, staff and visitors. All three of our campuses remain open: Milwaukee, UWM at Waukesha and UWM at Washington County.

While the situation on our campuses is stable now, public health officials believe there is a possibility of COVID-19 spreading in coming weeks. For those reasons, we extended spring break, which will now run from March 15-29 (this means all classes – including online – will not be taught during this time). The longer break provides UWM faculty and instructors with additional time to prepare for alternative course delivery, including online classes.

Plan for Classes After Spring Break

To reduce risks to our students, faculty and staff, we are suspending in-person instruction beginning on Monday, March 30 (after the extended spring break), when we will initiate alternate forms of delivering our classes (including online). This will continue until at least Friday, April 10. It is our hope that we will return to our normal instruction and operations the following week, beginning Monday, April 13. However, due to the dynamic nature of the pandemic, we will be re-evaluating the timeline and will keep you informed on when in-person instruction will resume, with one week’s notice. More specific information on your courses will be forthcoming from your instructors.

Residence Halls

Because in-person classes are suspended after this Saturday, students who live in University Housing are encouraged to return home or to an off-campus residence during the extended spring break and the additional two weeks while classes are being delivered alternatively (March 15-April 10). The residence halls are not closing. We will accommodate and care for students who do not have alternative housing and need to remain on campus. Please notify University Housing staff if you plan to stay in a residence hall. A follow-up communication will be sent by University Housing to all affected residents, including information about housing fees.

Students Living Off Campus

Students who live off-campus can continue with their studies from their off-campus residences.

Student Employees

Student employees should work with their supervisors on their planned work schedules over the extended break period and beyond. Student employees are not prohibited or discouraged from working at their UWM jobs under our current COVID-19 guidelines. However, UWM will respect students’ decisions not to work during the extended break and beyond. Additional information will be shared if the situation changes.

UWM Employees

All three UWM campuses are open and all employees should continue working as they normally would unless advised differently by their supervisor, director or dean. Additional information for our permanent employees is available at https://uwm.edu/hr/coronavirus-faq/.

Travel

All upcoming University-sponsored travel for students is being canceled through the end of the semester. This includes university-sponsored spring break trips, but does not include NCAA athletics, which will be subject to guidelines established by the Horizon League and the NCAA.

All upcoming university-sponsored travel for employees is being canceled through the end of the semester for areas severely impacted by COVID-19. This currently includes China, France, Germany, Italy, Iran, Japan, South Korea and Spain. This list may change as additional areas are impacted by COVID-19. Anyone returning from these severely impacted areas must self-quarantine for 14 days, whether or not symptoms are present, before returning to UWM campuses.

We also strongly discourage employees and students from any non-essential travel outside of Wisconsin until the end of the semester. If you do opt to travel, please know that there are health risks involved. If you travel outside of Wisconsin, we ask you to self-monitor for 14 days for fever, cough and difficulty breathing.

Students who are already overseas with study abroad programs in countries that do not have Level 3 warnings should consult with UWM study abroad administrators on whether to stay or return.

Campus Events and Gatherings

University-sponsored events and gatherings of more than 50 people should be canceled from March 15 through April 10. Exceptions may be granted by Provost Johannes Britz and Vice Chancellor for Finance & Administrative Affairs Robin Van Harpen.

What To Do If You Develop Symptoms

Please stay at home if you are sick. The CDC guidelines are here: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/hcp/guidance-prevent-spread.html. Contact your health care provider if you develop COVID-19-like symptoms, including fever, cough or difficulty breathing.

UWM faculty and staff should not come to work if they are sick. Please use sick leave or discuss alternative arrangements with your supervisor or human resources.

Your Questions and Concerns

We know that there are additional questions and concerns that arise as the COVID-19 situation continues to quickly change. Please see our FAQ page that answers the most commonly asked questions. You can also refer to our COVID-19 website for updates. You can submit questions that are not already included in the FAQs or on the website to: https://uwm.edu/coronavirus/ask-a-question/.

Our Panther family is strong, resilient and innovative. We will continue to monitor the global COVID-19 outbreak, assess its impact on UWM and adapt our actions and plans. Our goal is to keep everyone safe with minimal disruption as students continue their studies.

Mark A. Mone, PhD
Chancellor
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee


Possible COVID-19 Case and Spring Break Extended – Mar. 10, 2020

March 10, 2020

Dear UWM Faculty, Staff and Students,

We have all been hearing updates on the spread of COVID-19 in Wisconsin, across the country and the globe. Today, I write with an update about how COVID-19 is impacting UW-Milwaukee.

We have learned that an employee was tested yesterday at a local hospital for the COVID-19 virus. The employee became ill after having had contact with a person who had been to a country with a Level 3 warning. The results will not be known until the end of the week. The individual works in our UWM Foundation office, which is connected to the Cambridge Commons student housing facility on North Avenue on Milwaukee’s eastside. The individual who was tested is not at work. It is important to note that the majority of individuals in Wisconsin who have been tested have tested negative for COVID-19.

With the health and well-being of our campus communities being paramount, we are taking quick and decisive steps as a safeguard based on the rapidly changing environment in Wisconsin and worldwide.

We will extend our Spring Break by one week to March 15-29 so that UWM can prepare to move the majority of its classes online following the extended spring break. Students should make arrangements to be away from all three campuses during this extended break. Students who live in University Housing will receive additional details by Friday. Today, Provost Johannes Britz asked deans and other campus leaders to provide information on additional classes that can be moved online. We will send a follow-up communication with further details later this week.

UW-Milwaukee is updating its travel guidelines to include:

  • All upcoming University-sponsored travel for students is being canceled through the end of the semester. This includes university-sponsored Spring Break trips.
  • All upcoming University-sponsored travel for employees is being canceled through the end of the semester for areas severely impacted by COVID-19. This currently includes China, France, Germany, Italy, Iran, Japan, South Korea and Spain. This list may change as additional areas are impacted by COVID-19.
  • Anyone returning from these severely-impacted areas must self-quarantine for 14 days, whether or not symptoms are present, before returning to UW-Milwaukee campuses.
  • We also strongly discourage employees and students from any non-essential travel outside of Wisconsin until the end of the semester. If you do opt to travel, please know that there are health risks involved. If you travel outside of Wisconsin, we ask you to self-monitor for 14 days for fever, cough and difficulty breathing.
  • Students who are already overseas with study abroad programs in countries that do not have Level 3 warnings should consult with UWM study abroad administrators on whether to stay or return.

This is a rapidly changing health issue and we will provide updates to our campus communities as quickly as possible when additional information becomes available. In the meantime, you may also check our COVID-19 website. Thank you for your patience, compassion and empathy.

Best regards,
Mark A. Mone, PhD,
Chancellor
University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee,


UWM Update Regarding Travel and Coronavirus – Mar. 6, 2020

March 6, 2020

Dear UWM students, faculty, and staff,

The situation internationally and within the United States regarding COVID-19 has continued to evolve rapidly. To date, there have been no confirmed cases in the city of Milwaukee or in Waukesha or Washington counties. Our campus community, like many other communities that are in areas where there is not local transmission, is still at low risk.

In the past two days, the (national) CDC and state and local public health officials have provided separate guidance for higher education institutions. Their guidance emphasizes important and unique issues for higher education to consider and the importance of preparedness. UWM’s Infectious Disease Preparedness Team and Crisis Management Team have been closely monitoring the situation and working closely with public health professionals.

We have taken a number of important steps before and as a result of the new guidance. UWM developed an Interim International Travel Policy to establish clear guidelines for the restriction of student study abroad programs and faculty and staff travel. UWM suspended university-sponsored programming in Level 3 Travel Warning countries, which include Italy, South Korea, and mainland China. All UWM study abroad students who are returning from Level 3 countries have been asked to follow public health guidelines and self-quarantine (stay home and do not go to work, classes, athletics events or other social gatherings) at their permanent home address for 14 days and to monitor for fever, cough and difficulty breathing.

Given upcoming spring break travel, both locally and abroad, by many members of our campus community, it is important to re-emphasize key items within the International Travel Policy as well as our expectations of all returning international travelers.

Faculty and Staff Travel

If you are a faculty or staff member planning University-sponsored travel to a Level 3 CDC or Level 3 or Level 4 Department of State country, you are required to complete a Travel Risk Assessment Form to be submitted for review.

Self-Quarantine for All Travelers to Certain Countries

Consistent with recent state and CDC guidelines for the general public, all travelers returning from Level 3 countries should self-quarantine for 14 days in order to further support the health and well-being of their communities. For those returning from any location that is a Level 2 CDC Travel Health Notice, we advise that when you arrive home, you self-monitor for 14 days for symptoms (fever, cough, shortness of breath). For more details related to self-quarantine and self-monitoring details are provided on the Department of Health Services website. If you become ill, you should immediately contact your healthcare provider and the local health department for further instructions.

Reporting to Local Public Health Authorities

UWM is being asked to report the names of travelers who are known to be returning from Level 3 countries to local public health authorities. Local public health authorities will contact you and provide support and resources.

Work Arrangements during Self-Quarantine

Employees returning from Level 3 countries should self-quarantine for 14 days and contact their supervisor to request time off. You must use sick leave or other leave time if you are advised to -self-quarantine unless your supervisor is able to plan for you to work remotely.

Student Housing during Self-Quarantine

Students returning from a Level 3 country who live in University Housing should plan to return to their permanent home address or other off-campus location for the duration of the 14-day self-quarantine. If they do not have such an alternative, University Housing may be able to assist you by calling (414) 229-4065.

Student Class Attendance during Self-Quarantine

Students returning from a Level 3 country should not attend classes that require in-person participation. They should contact their instructor to discuss possible alternatives for completing coursework. The Dean of Students office is available to assist you by calling (414) 229-4632.

As this situation continues to evolve, guidelines may change, and it is likely that there will be additional countries and areas within the U.S. where widespread community transmission is occurring. Please monitor CDC and Department of State sites before and during all travel for the most recent information. Enrolling in the Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP) is a good way to get up-to-date information. You may also consult UWM’s COVID-19 website and UW System’s Coronavirus Preparedness website.

Sincerely,

Julie Bonner, MD
Campus Health Officer
Executive Director Norris Health Center,
University Counseling and Health Promotion


UWM Health Update Regarding Coronavirus – Feb. 21, 2020

February 21, 2020

Dear UWM students, faculty, and staff,

UWM’s Infectious Disease Preparedness Team has continued to closely monitor the coronavirus (COVID-19) situation. While the international situation is serious, the local circumstances have not changed. To date, there have been no confirmed cases in the city of Milwaukee, or in Waukesha or Washington counties. Our campus community is still at low risk.

The concern over the COVID-19 outbreak comes at a time of year when a much more common disease, influenza, is prevalent. Only a very small number of cases of coronavirus disease have developed in the United States. In contrast, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates more than 26 million people in the U.S. already have gotten the flu this season.

This week the City of Milwaukee Health Department reminded our community that it was not too late to get a flu vaccine this season. In fact, the university is partnering with the Milwaukee Health Department in hosting a flu shot clinic at the UWM Student Union on Tuesday, Feb. 25, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. There will be no cost for the vaccine while supply lasts.

In addition to getting vaccinated, individuals also can help prevent the spread of flu by following these guidelines. Since both flu and coronavirus are caused by a virus, the same prevention tips apply to each. These include:

  • Try to avoid close contact with sick people.
  • Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. After use, throw the tissue in the trash and wash your hands.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth. Germs spread this way.
  • Clean and disinfect surfaces and objects that may be contaminated with germs like flu.

While following the prevention tips is the best strategy to stay healthy, it’s still possible to get the flu. The signs and symptoms include a fever over 100 degrees Fahrenheit, cough, sore throat and body aches. If you experience these, stay home from class and work, and avoid other people. Stay home for at least 24 hours after you no longer have a fever or signs of a fever without the use of fever-reducing medicines, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen. Missing classes, work and other responsibilities may be challenging, but taking time to rest will benefit you and protect others.

Another event next week is aimed at raising public awareness of COVID-19 in the general community. The Zilber School of Public Health presents a panel discussion, “Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) – What We Know and What We Need to Consider,” on Wednesday, Feb. 26, from 5 to 6:30 p.m.

The panel includes me, UWM faculty, city and state public health professionals, and the enterprise epidemiologist from Froedtert & the Medical College of Wisconsin.

We will continue to regularly communicate with the UWM community with updates related to this emerging infectious disease. Our website is a primary source of information and is updated regularly.

Students who have general questions about influenza or the coronavirus, or who are sick and need medical advice, can call the Norris Health Center at 414-229-4716 to speak to a nurse. Faculty and staff, please consult with your health care professional.

Sincerely,

Julie Bonner, MD
Campus Health Officer
Executive Director Norris Health Center,
University Counseling and Health Promotion


Campus Preparedness and Coronavirus

February 5, 2020

Dear UWM Students, Faculty and Staff,

I am writing with an update related to campus preparedness and 2019 novel coronavirus.

As of now, there are no confirmed cases of the coronavirus in the City of Milwaukee. One case has been confirmed in Dane County. Although our campus community continues to be at low risk, we are nonetheless taking steps to be prepared to respond in the event that these circumstances change.

At UWM, the Infectious Disease Preparedness Team is meeting regularly to monitor the situation, to review rapidly evolving guidance from national, state and local public health authorities, and to coordinate across departments to address needs. We are working closely with state and local health departments and in close consultation with UW System and global health and infectious disease experts.

Our campus team is led by me and has representation from the following departments/groups: Norris Health Center, University Police, Dean of Students, Academic Affairs, University Safety and Assurances, College of General Studies, Human Resources, Center for International Education, University Housing, Partners for Health, University Relations, and Legal Affairs. Our team will continue to monitor the situation and respond as needed.

We have created a website that provides accurate and up-to-date campus information related to the coronavirus. We have also formed a community support group that will partner with staff from the Division of Global Inclusion & Engagement, University Counseling Services, and the Centers for Advocacy and Student Engagement toidentify proactive educational information and ensure that appropriate people are aware of available resources.

Every person can contribute to campus preparedness by following good prevention practices. We are in the peak of Wisconsin’s influenza season right now. Please follow the tips of our February “Take Good Care of Yourself Campaign,” starting with frequent hand-washing. Stay well-informed and share accurate information to protect your own health and the health of the community. A daily update can be found on the website of the national Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Students who have general questions about influenza or the coronavirus, or who are sick and need medical advice, can call the Norris Health Center at 414-229-4716 to speak to a nurse. Faculty and staff, please consult with your health care professional.

Sincerely,

Julie Bonner, MD
Campus Health Officer
Executive Director Norris Health Center,
University Counseling and Health Promotion


UWM Student Health Update

January 26, 2020

Dear UWM Students,

Welcome to the start of the spring semester.

There is a peak in the flu every year around this time. Last flu season, Wisconsin had 17,210 cases. With that in mind, here are some reminders related to prevention and advice if you are sick.

Prevention

  • Practice good hand hygiene. Wash your hands often with soap and water and/or use alcohol-based hand sanitizer, especially after coughing and sneezing.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze and dispose of used tissues in the trash. If you don’t have a tissue, cough or sneeze into your elbow or shoulder, not into your hands.

KNOW what to do if you get sick with the flu

  • The signs and symptoms of flu include: a fever over 100 degrees Fahrenheit, a cough, sore throat and body aches. If you get these symptoms, stay home from class and work, and avoid other people.
  • Many people who get the flu who do not have a high-risk health condition don’t need to see a doctor. Go to https://www.cdc.gov/flu/prevent/actions-prevent-flu.htm for specific advice on diagnosis, symptoms, treatment and taking care of yourself. If you are pregnant or have a chronic medical illness, contact your health care provider.
  • If you think you need to see a medical provider, call the clinic first to describe your symptoms and let them know your temperature, which you should measure with a thermometer. UWM students have three options for care. They may call Norris Health Center at 414-229-4716, their personal health care providers, or urgent care centers after hours and on weekends.
  • Cold care kits are available from the dispensary at Norris Health Center and can help relieve some systems. Please use a mask if you visit the dispensary.
  • Stay home for at least 24 hours after you no longer have a fever or signs of a fever, without the use of fever-reducing medicines, such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen.

We realize it is challenging to miss classes, work and other responsibilities but taking time to rest will benefit your recovery and protect others.

Recently, the news has been focused on a different virus—the 2019 Novel Coronavirus. The https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html provide information that is accurate and up to date. I also wanted to let you know that my campus partners and I have been closely monitoring the coronavirus outbreak in China, working with local and state health officials. Also, it’s important for you to know that we do not have any confirmed or suspected cases of coronavirus at UWM.

If you have general questions about influenza or the 2019 Novel Coronavirus, or you are sick and need medical advice, call Norris Health Center at 414-229-4716 to speak to a nurse.

Your health and well-being are important to us.

Sincerely,

Julie Bonner, MD
Campus Health Officer
Executive Director Norris Health Center,
University Counseling and Health Promotion

Updated Feb.19, 2020