Published on March 19, 2020 at 7:45 a.m.  

Students,

I am proud of the resilience and flexibility with which you are responding to the many challenges presented by the coronavirus pandemic.  The strength of the Samford community is perhaps most evident in times such as these.  Our faculty, staff and administration are committed to serving your academic, emotional, physical and spiritual needs as we navigate this evolving situation.  We pray for you daily and are devoted to doing all we can to support you in the days ahead.

Samford faculty and staff are continually working to evolve university operations in response to the dynamic nature of this pandemic.  This email is to update you on some of these matters:

  • New information is being added to the coronavirus microsite daily, so please check it regularly for the latest news and information.
  • Students should not visit campus for any reason until otherwise notified; if you are a residential student and need to retrieve an essential item from your room, please email reslife@samford.edu to make arrangements to ship your item.
  • Class registration for fall 2020 is proceeding as planned.
  • A very important issue we are examining is refunds or credits for students related to room and board expenses while students are off campus until April 6. This issue will be considered by the university’s Board of Trustees during a special meeting next week. The administration is preparing a proposal for the trustees to consider and we will provide you with an update no later than March 28.   
  • Technology support is available 24/7; email support@samford.edu for assistance.  Canvas support is available by (1) the chat feature, (2) emailing support@instructure.com or (3) calling 833-741-0037.
  • The digital library is open and librarians are available to serve you.  Virtual reference and support is available Monday-Thursday 8:00 a.m. – 9:00 p.m., Friday 8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m., Saturday 12:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m. and Sunday 1:00 p.m. – 4:00 p.m.  A research guide detailing library services during this period of online learning can be found here.
  • The Career Development Center is available to work remotely with you on all career-related topics including choosing and changing a major, career assessments and exploration, resume writing, job and internship search, mock interviews, the graduate search, and more.  To schedule a telephone appointment, email career@samford.edu and specify your year, major, what you would like to meet about, and the days/times they are available for an appointment.  To search for part-time and full-time jobs, continue to utilize www.HireSamford.com.
  • University Health Services is available by appointment Monday-Friday from 8:00 a.m. - 4:30 p.m.  To discuss your symptoms or to make an appointment, call 205-726-2835 or send a message through the patient portal.
  • Counseling Services are available via phone or e-mail.  You may e-mail counseling@samford.edu or call 205-726-4083.  The Counseling Services website also includes a number of helpful resources.
  • CARE Forms are available for online submission and support coordinators are available for individual support.
  • The post office is holding all mail until on-campus instruction resumes.  If you need mail forwarded to you, contact the post office directly at postoffice@samford.edu or 205-726-2933.
  • Finally, as to the questions of when we might resume regular operations and any possible cancellation of commencement ceremonies, let me assure you that it is still too early to make those decisions.  We will continue to hope for a prompt return to campus.  If decisions regarding commencement ceremonies must eventually be made, Dr. Westmoreland has instructed us that—unassailably—we will observe the ceremonies in true Samford fashion, even if they must be held at a later date.  He feels honor bound to deliver that “we sit in the shade of trees” line in person. 

The number of COVID-19 cases continues to grow and it is imperative we remain vigilant in our efforts to reduce its spread. Based on the latest guidance from the CDC and the Alabama Department of Public Health, you should:

  • Stay home if you or someone in your household is sick.
  • Avoid social gathering in groups of more than 10 people.  
  • Avoid eating or drinking in restaurants or food courts.  Utilize drive-thru, pickup or delivery options.
  • Avoid discretionary travel.
  • Continue to practice good hygiene (wash hands frequently).
  • Practice social distancing.

Many student-specific questions are answered on the coronavirus microsite.  Take time to review that information.  If you have additional questions, please e-mail COVID19info@samford.edu.  We’re doing our best to respond to all inquiries as quickly as possible.

I will be providing you with ongoing updates in the days ahead.  My prayers are with each of you.

Best…Buck

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