As we prepare to welcome our students back for the upcoming semester, SMU’s Emergency Operations Center (EOC) team has finalized and posted the Fall 2020 Operations Plan, designed to ensure the safety of our campus and minimize the spread of COVID-19.
This plan formally outlines the many strategies and changes that we have already implemented and communicated in virtual town halls, SMU’s COVID-19 website and messaging to students, parents, faculty and staff. The EOC developed and finalized this comprehensive operations plan in consultation with members of the University community representing all facets of academic and campus operations. The work began with input from the President’s Task Force for a Healthy Opening Fall 2020 and its subcommittees, and the final document has been approved by the President’s Executive Council.
Our goal is to deliver the outstanding personalized education that is the hallmark of SMU while ensuring the campus community’s health and safety through science and common-sense expectations that adhere to Texas and Dallas County guidelines. We gave you the Big Picture Overview in June, but the Fall 2020 Operations plan incorporates operational levels, flow charts and detailed procedures, protocols and contingencies that SMU will use to respond to the pandemic’s fluid nature. It is a working document that will be updated and expanded as needed.
Even with this plan and safety measures in place, it is still up to each of us to act responsibly to help protect everyone’s health and welfare – by practicing social distancing, wearing face coverings and remaining vigilant to changes in individual health. Carefully following this roadmap will help those of us working, teaching and living on campus stay healthy. It also gives our students the opportunity to receive face-to-face instruction from our excellent faculty as well as experience all the campus has to offer. I hope you will find it informative and useful as we face these unusual times together.
R. Gerald Turner