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March 13 update to employees from Chancellor Blank

March 13, 2020

To our UW–Madison faculty and staff,

As you are acutely aware, our state is facing a public health emergency that is having significant impact on all of us.

Late Friday afternoon, Governor Evers issued an order mandating the closing of all public and private K-12 schools in Wisconsin no later than this coming Wednesday, March 18.

We know this action, coupled with the ongoing threat of COVID-19, will cause tremendous disruption in the lives of many UW–Madison employees.

Campus leadership is working as quickly as possible to assess the impact this will have on campus operations, on our workforce and individual employees. More information will be provided to managers and employees in the next few days.

Despite the circumstances, I deeply appreciate the spirit of flexibility and resilience that I hear from everyone I encounter. The question I have heard most frequently is “What can I do to help?”

Here are three steps you can take right now:

Stay informed: Our campus website is being updated continuously, along with a chart showing the current status of campus services and operations along with extensive FAQs.

Prepare for alternative delivery: If your role is instruction, continue planning for the switch to alternative delivery of instruction. If your work is elsewhere, engage in continuity planning in your own unit.

Take care of yourself and family by following best practices around health and travel.

We can tackle this challenge best by working together, with respect for one another.  I realize this is an uncertain time…we are in uncharted waters here at UW.  But if we let fear dominate our response, we will not cope well with these challenges.

Thank you for all that each and every one of you do in support of our mission and on behalf of our students and the people of Wisconsin.

—Chancellor Rebecca Blank