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COVID-19: Student Support

March 13, 2020

Dear Badgers,

This has been a tough week. And needless to say, this isn’t the lead-up to spring break anyone hoped for or expected.

In the flurry of campus updates, news reports, and decisions you’re making, I wanted to reach out and check in before spring break begins.

I’ve connected with many of you during the past several days and have heard the complexity of your concerns. We know this is hard, and there are no easy answers, but what I can assure you is that we have teams of very dedicated people working as quickly as we can to address your questions. The Dean of Students Office, International Student Services, University Health Services, and many more are here to support you.

I want to share a few reminders:

This is not a three-week spring break (as wonderful as that sounds). Classes resume on Monday, March 23. We know it won’t be the same as being in the classroom, but the academic expectations we hold high at UW–Madison remain unchanged. Instructors are receiving technical support as needed to move their classes online and to ensure they are accessible. Please be patient as they make this transition, and they will contact you with further instructions. (Be prepared for pop quizzes on Monday! JK)

We can help support your financial and basic needs. We know that some of you can’t travel home or are concerned about employment, mental health access, medical care, housing, and more. We’re working on identifying these needs and making sure you have the proper resources and support. If you or someone you know needs help, visit the COVID-19 website for a list of resources.

Be kind and be responsible. It is each of our civic responsibility and in our Badger DNA to be a good community member. Though the virus has had less effect on young people, remember that you could still carry the disease to a relative, elderly neighbor, or fellow student more vulnerable to infections. Stay informed with trusted sources; postpone or cancel unnecessary travel; and follow the proper guidance if you must travel internationally or within the U.S. Be sure you understand when and how you may need to self-quarantine—be honest in your follow-through.

As we’ve considered significant changes at the university, you have been at the top of my mind—those of you anticipating graduation; having to change expectations on programs, sports and events for the semester; unable to be with your families; facing financial hardship; or anxious about moving to online classes. I want you to know that we care deeply about these challenges and are focused on providing you the support you need to succeed.

Please keep visiting for updates and sending your questions to We’re in this together. On, Wisconsin!

Take good care,

Lori Reesor
Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs