March 27, 2020
On Monday, the spring semester resumes, with all UT courses held online. So much has changed during these past two weeks, yet when it comes to being a student, your goals have not. You came to the Forty Acres to get a UT education, and that’s what our faculty and staff members will continue to provide. We want every student to complete your classes this semester.
It’s going to take teamwork. Your professors will bring their passion and expertise to your classes online, and I know you will continue to bring your enthusiasm, curiosity and dedication to your education.
With the semester halfway complete, you have been working hard on your classes, and now you’ll also be adjusting to a new way of learning. Your professors recognize the challenges this will present, so through the end of the semester, undergraduate students will have the option of taking all classes Pass/Fail, and graduate students will have the option of taking all classes Credit/No Credit. This is not a decision that you need to make now. You will have until May 29 to make this choice.
If you have problems with the online technology, we have representatives available by email, chat (click the “Ask Bevo!” pop up) and phone (512-232-6988). We are providing technology for students with financial need who don’t have access to personal computers or internet connections, and we are also supporting students in need with food and housing. If you require help with any of these issues, please complete the Student Emergency Services form. And if you still have to retrieve belongings from a university residence hall, you can schedule a day and time here.
Learning from Home
As you study and learn from home, there are services available to assist you, including Keep Learning, a new digital resource dedicated to student success. Keep Learning provides tips and tools for navigating the transition to remote learning and staying on track toward earning your UT degree. It also has portals to helpful campus-wide support resources.
As we work to adjust to our new reality this semester, there will be disappointments, particularly for those seniors and graduate students who plan to earn their degrees in May.
UT commencement is unlike any other, and graduating students look forward to this special celebration of their achievement. Unfortunately, because of the public health risk to our community, we decided to postpone the physical Spring 2020 Commencement ceremony.
To the Class of 2020: We will still honor you. We’ll be hosting a virtual ceremony in May, as well as a university-wide ceremony on the Forty Acres later in the year. Both of these events will feature your commencement speaker, Brené Brown, who is thrilled to have the opportunity to celebrate with you twice. There will be individual college and school ceremonies later in the year. It won’t be the same as in years past, but these celebrations will still be a tribute to our graduates.
To all UT students, Monday is a continuation of your studies as well as a new beginning. You will rise to the occasion and thrive in your academic work. You will make the most of this opportunity, and I wish you all the best during the remainder of this unprecedented semester.
Gregory L. Fenves