updated May 15, 2020 at 1:00 p.m.
Friday, May 15, 2020
Video message to NKU campus community
Good afternoon Norse Nation and happy Friday. This is my 8th weekly video message.It's been a busy week at NKU although they all seem pretty busy.
We wrapped up the semester last week We had our virtual commencement last Saturday, board meetings on Tuesday and Wednesday, and of course there's so many Zoom meetings that we've all come to be used to. I am told that people are now getting Zoom fatigue. I hear you.
We also celebrated National Nurses Week, May 6th through the 12th. I want to just give a big shout out to all the health care heroes out there, especially our students and alumni nurses, who are on the front lines. By the way, to learn more about our featured nurses, please visit https://www.nku.edu/nursesweek.
As I mentioned last Saturday, we honored, graduates with a virtual commencement ceremony. It's not quite the same as the in-person traditional ceremony we have at BB&T arena, but given all the restrictions we felt this was the best we could do. And I hope all our graduates appreciated how much we both cherish and honor their achievements.
I want to thank everyone who made this possible. The faculty videos, the student Senior Award winners. Of course our NKU Philharmonic, our students who sang the Alma Mater and also our words of wisdom from our Alumni Association president and of course behind the scenes, our events folks and IT folks did a marvelous job. So thank you all and once again congratulations to our May graduates.
I hope many of you will be able to come back in December and join us in the BB&T arena as well. Speaking of the fall, next week we hope to announce what the fall operations will look like. The COVID preparedness team has been hard at work examining a variety of issues to come up with a plan that we want to share with campus next week. And we're going to be having this out next week and we hope all of you can share your feedback with us because it will be important to get all your input before we make a final decision, which we hope to do no later than the middle of June.
You might have also heard we just put out a message requiring all visitors, faculty, staff and students as well who are coming onto campus through the end of summer to wear facial coverings. The FAQ is up on the website and this is essentially to prioritize the health and safety of our campus community. It is also in line with the requirement as part of the governor's Healthy at Work initiative and this decision is in effect through the summer and may extend into the fall as well. By the way, I have my own NKU mask ready to go when I visit campus. So, make sure you get one as well.
Speaking of updates, The Student Emergency Fund is now over $100,000. We have given over a 1,000 students some funding to support their different needs. We also have the CARES Federal Act funding available for our students and that went live about a week ago. We've had a lot of interest as there as well and we have allocated several hundred thousand dollars from that pool of money as well. And again, I want to thank everyone for making a big difference in supporting our students as well as our employees through the Benevolent Association Fund as well.
I want to tell you about an exciting initiative that we're gonna get moving on pretty soon. It's called the NKU 10k initiative. No It's not quite running ten kilometers, but it's an outreach effort to connect with each and every one of our , students. I'm going to be asking our faculty, our staff, our campus community, alumni to help volunteer to connect with our students by phone over the next couple of months. Look out for some more information at https://www.nku.edu/10k, where there is a sign-up form for you to volunteer to essentially be able to make some phone calls. We hope that our volunteers will be able to make about twenty calls or so to our students through the end of the of the month, maybe through the end of June just to connect and see how they're doing and just check in on them.
So, we're looking forward to that. I know I'm excited to be able to make some calls as well. Our NKU students by the way joined with the UC medical students in order to provide a volunteer COVID program. This volunteer program essentially is assigned so that people who are years or older are able to get some assistance. Whether it's picking up groceries or prescriptions, running errands or just checking in on them and our students are working with the UC medical students to make that happen. Again, I'm so proud of what our students are doing. Not only taking care of themselves, but also going out and helping serve members of the community.
Finally, I want to make a one final point in my message to you today. May is Mental Health Awareness Month. One in five individuals suffers with the mental illness, but this virus has exacerbated this issue tremendously. The self-isolations, the being away from family and friends, not being able to have as much engagement as possible. Our Health Counseling and Student Wellness team is partnering with the Campus Recreation Center. to support Mental Health America's tools to thrive by initiative. You can go check out hashtag Tools to Thrive and you can see on social media a lot of the resources are available for this. Please take this seriously. We know it's a major challenge and we have to all work together to take care of each other and our well-being in health as well. So I want to make sure I want to thank all of you for taking part in this and for really becoming really aware of some of the mental health challenges that this pandemic is brought about.
Again, it's always good to be with you and to see you again very soon. Please be on the lookout for the fall operations email and information next week.
And again, I wish you the best and have a great weekend. Thank you
Here is a process to follow if you need to get tested.
The Kentucky Department of Health
If you have developed a fever or respiratory symptoms and believe you have had exposure to a known case or traveled to an area with community spread, you should:
The Ohio Department of Health
Ohio Department of Health strongly recommends that all Ohioans immediately take the following actions if they feel sick:
Please call and do not come into the Student Health Center. A trained medical professional will guide you on next steps.