This week, our coronavirus numbers remain manageable with two faculty members, five staff members and 23 students testing positive for COVID-19. If you are experiencing symptoms or have been exposed to the virus, remember to fill out the University’s COVID-19 Self Reporting Form. This form allowed us to successfully conduct contact tracing last semester, as did the “Check-in” feature on Austin Peay’s mobile app. Please continue to use the app to check in to spaces across campus using the posted QR codes. We also need everyone to complete the Daily Pre-Screening on the app so we can move through this semester without any major disruptions.
Austin Peay also is in the process of becoming a COVID-19 vaccination site. We’re currently awaiting approval from the state, and once we hear from them, we’ll begin distributing vaccines. Do NOT contact Boyd Health Services to set up a vaccine appointment. All appointments must be made by the county through the state’s appointment form. We will dispense the vaccine in accordance with Tennessee’s phased vaccination plan. To see when you will be allowed to receive the vaccine, please visit the state’s eligibility site.
On Feb. 11, the Austin Peay Division of External Affairs will host its third annual Industry Summit, “Leading in a Disruptive Environment.” During this half-day event, several University and community leaders will discuss the lessons we’ve learned while operating during a pandemic. This is a virtual, free event, and members of the campus community are invited to attend. For more information or to register, please visit www.apsu.edu/summit.
Fall 2021 Update
This fall, we plan to return to a more traditional class delivery format, with about 30 percent of our classes online and 70 percent in a face-to-face environment. I’m hesitant to say we will return to “normal” because I don’t believe we will ever return to the way life was in February 2020. Nor should we want to. We’ve learned a lot over the last year, and we’ll use that knowledge to make better decisions in the months and years to come. But we are moving forward with a more traditional face-to-face format, and we’ll keep you updated as we make additional decisions in the coming weeks.
If you are a student struggling financially, please reach out to our Office of Student Financial Aid. They may have resources available to you, such as Gap Scholarships that help cover tuition for certain situations. Earlier this year, we also received word that we will get another round of federal stimulus funding, similar to last year's CARES Act money. Last fall, we were able to provide CARES money to eligible students, based on a federal funding formula. We’ll likely use the same formula this spring to distribute these new federal dollars to students. In the next few weeks, we’ll provide information on how the University will distribute that money.
I discussed a few other topics during my weekly Social Media Town Hall on Wednesday. If you missed that event, you can watch it below.
Social Media Town Hall with President Whiteside on January 27, 2021
Thank you for helping Austin Peay successfully begin its spring semester. I appreciate your diligence, and I look forward to seeing how we will continue to improve throughout the semester.