Back to School: Some helpful info about policies, move-in and more

I know most of you are up to your eyebrows in packing and other preparations to move your student to campus next week.

Even under “normal” circumstances, moving a student in can be a challenge, especially for first-timers. So it’s been heart-warming over the last week or so to see the flurry of activity on the Longwood Parents Facebook page, with veteran Lancer parents providing information and reassurances to anxious moms and dads posting questions about dropping off their freshmen.

I work in marketing and communications, where we talk a lot about the Longwood family. From my vantage point, that family clearly includes parents as well as students, faculty and staff. A big “thank you” to those of you who have made preparations for the start of this semester a little less stressful for your fellow Longwood parents.

Along that line, I thought I would also try to provide some helpful information about some updated policies and guidelines, move-in and campus life this semester. (Your student received an email yesterday with some of this information.) We’re looking forward to having your Lancers back on campus!

Policies and Guidelines

As part of our return-to-campus protocol, we are implementing a policy regarding visitors in Longwood-managed housing that will be in effect at least until Labor Day. At that time, we will evaluate in light of public health conditions and guidance, and either extend these restrictions or potentially adjust them with other continued precautions. In the meantime, students who live in Longwood-managed housing should not have any guests who are not residents of their housing group (outlined below). This restriction applies to parents and other family members.
Housing Groupings
Lancer Park
Moss Hall
Johns Hall
Longwood Landings
Sharp, Register and Stubbs halls
Cox and Wheeler halls

We have asked that your student limit travel off campus this semester, including visits home. While this is an inconvenience, limiting the spread of the Covid-19 virus is paramount so that everyone can stay on campus. If your student must leave campus, they are responsible for following the same guidance they are adhering to while at Longwood—daily symptom checks, wearing a face covering in public areas, maintaining social distance, and washing their hands properly and often.

Please make sure your student has an adequate supply of face coverings, which will be required in public spaces inside all campus buildings, including residence halls, Longwood-managed housing and classrooms. Longwood will supply each student with two cloth face masks—residential students will get their masks from their RA or REC, and off-campus students will get theirs by coming to the Commuter Lounge in Upchurch 202—but students should bring extras so they always have one on hand.

Move-in

Your student should have received details about their designated move-in date and time via their Longwood email. That information can also be found here, based on your student’s residence hall and room number. (Note that Johns and Moss halls were formerly named Frazer and Curry, respectively.)

Up to 3 helpers will be allowed to assist your student with bringing their belongings to their room or apartment. Volunteers won’t be available to help due to Covid-19 safety precautions.

If you will need a dolly or cart to move items in, please bring one with you. We will not provide carts or dollies. You should also bring your own face coverings, gloves and any other personal protective equipment (PPE) you need to follow Covid-19 safety guidelines.

Campus Life

Many areas of campus have been marked for social distancing, including Dorrill Dining Hall.

 Longwood’s Dorrill Dining Hall and other food outlets, including the campus Starbucks, will be operating this semester, with safety precautions in place.

At this time, appointments are required to see a health-care practitioner in person at the University Health Center, and students should call ahead if they need to drop off paperwork or to pay a bill. Telehealth visits also are available. The University Health Center’s number is 434-395-2102. Please remember that parents cannot make appointments for their students. If your student needs an appointment, they need to make the call.

Longwood’s Health and Fitness Center is open and the Campus Recreation staff have planned a variety of activities, all with Covid-19 precautions in place. Students are required to wear a face covering when entering and exiting the Health and Fitness Center. In-person fitness classes that will be offered this fall include spin and barbells. Classes to be offered in an online format include yoga, boxing and Pilates. Intramural activities will include a disc golf league and tournament; a modified sand volleyball league (no net play and only 3 members per team); and a pickleball league.

Anyone entering the Health and Fitness Center must fill out a screening questionnaire and wear a face covering

Washers and dryers in all laundry facilities in Longwood-managed housing can be operated with Lancer CA$H (accessible through your student’s Lancer Card) or with quarters. You can find information about how to add Lancer CA$H funds to the Lancer Card here. Note that a package of laundry “swipes” to operate washers and dryers is already included in the housing fees for students living in Lancer Park and Longwood Landings.

—Sabrina Brown

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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All in person will be in Brock 101 – only 5 tutees at a time!

Please try to arrive at the start of the hour, but you may wait (socially distant) until someone is finished.

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End of Summer New Reads

In order to bring you new and fun recreational reads, the Greenwood Library participates in a book leasing program through McNaughton. These titles are shelved on the small bookcases in the middle of the Atrium and are designated with green labels. You can browse the entire collection here and if you’re interested in what’s new, look out below!

28 Summers by Elin HilderbrandFriends and Strangers by J. Courtney SullivanSeparated by Jacob SoboroffBlue Ticket by Sophie MackintoshSex and Vanity by Kevin KwanWonderland by Zoje StageIndigo by Loren D. EstlemanCut to the Bone by Ellison CooperHalf Moon Bay by Jonathan and Jesse KellermanPlaying Nice by J.P. DelaneyDaddy's Girls by Danielle SteelHamnet by Maggie O'FarrellHow to Destroy America in Three Easy Steps by Ben ShapiroA Walk Along the Beach by Debbie Macomber

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DEC/CAFE Workshops

DEC/CAFE Workshops

Flexible Teaching and Learning Workshop Series

The Digital Education Collaborative (DEC) and the Center for Faculty Enrichment (CAFE) are offering a series of workshops to help instructors prepare courses for the fall 2020 semester. These workshops will focus on pedagogy (why we do what we do) and technology (how to use appropriate tools) for in-person, hybrid, and online teaching.  We will emphasize developing practices that are specific to your course context; therefore, prior to each session, faculty will complete a situational analysis of the course(s). Each session will be 90 minutes with the option of an additional 30 minutes small group discussion for more focused mentoring. All workshops before August 17th are Zoom sessions; beginning August 17th, participants will have an in-person or remote option.

To register, click here!

If you are unable to attend a workshop, CAFE and DEC offer one-on-one appointments and small group sessions for programs and departments.

Course Design 101+

Facilitators: Pam Tracy, Director, CAFE; Julie Mersiowsky, Director, DEC

In this session, we will begin with the principles and practices of backward course design to facilitate aligning student learning outcomes with assignments with learning activities. Building on your course design, we will walk through a Canvas course template that you can use in your courses.

  • Monday, August 10 from 1-2:30pm

________________________________________________________________________________

Flexible Learning Environments: How to Blend or Flip Your Classroom

Facilitators: Julie Mersiowsky, Director, DEC; Adam Franssen, Asst. Director, CAFE

Within the context of one course, blended teaching and learning takes place both asynchronously and synchronously–in person and virtually.  When you flip your classroom, students study course content outside of class and class time is devoted to activities that provide students with the opportunity to practice and engage with course content.  In both environments, active learning and engagement are emphasized. In this workshop, you will identify activities and assignments within your class(es) that lend themselves to be flipped or blended into online or remote environments.

  • Wednesday, August 12 from 1-2:30pm

________________________________________________________________________________

Teaching Writing Online

Facilitators: Heather Lettner-Rust, CAFE Teaching Writing Consultant; Marcus Christian, Instructional Designer, DEC

Using writing as a thinking and assessment tool for teaching is a great way to understand where your students are. You’ll see their strengths and their gaps in thinking and in style. As we move forward to the fall, teaching and using writing in the online classroom can be a useful shift in tools that supplement or replace your current practices. During the workshop, we will discuss ways to support your course outcomes and ways to utilize tools already in Canvas (paper markup, electronic rubrics, and Grade Assist).

  • Tuesday, August 18 from 1-2:30pm

________________________________________________________________________________

Teaching Speaking

Facilitators: Kris Paal, Teaching Speaking Consultant, CAFE; Ronda Scarrow, Teaching Speaking Consultant, CAFE; Marcus Christian, Instructional Designer, DEC

With fall quickly approaching, join us  for an in-depth presentation and discussion on how to reach your student learning outcomes through engaging speaking assignments, instruction, and delivery options for students.  During the workshop we will discuss such things as audience analysis, creating speaking content, delivery approaches, and rubrics.  Additionally, we will address best practices for creating and assessing speaking assignments in an online environment, with attention given to technology resources available through Canvas and beyond.

  • Friday, August 21 from 1-2:30pm

________________________________________________________________________________

Diversity, Inclusion, Equity in all Learning Environments

How Do I Manage this?: Integrating Diversity, Inclusion, and the Lived Experience into the Learning Environment

Facilitators: Dana Miller Kieran, Director of Disability Resources/ADA Coordinator; Shayla Betts, Assistant Professor of Social Work; Jonathan Page, Director of Multicultural Affairs

In recent events, from the pandemic through the climate of social unrest, it is now more important than ever that faculty and staff meet the needs of our students in and beyond the classroom.  In this session, we will focus on strategies and practical takeaways to implement within courses, provide an understanding of backgrounds and characteristics of students as they return to campus, and address key pedagogical challenges that the current climate has created.  Additional supporting resources will be provided.

  • Thursday, August 20 from 1-2:30pm

________________________________________________________________________________

Designing Assignments and Learning Activities

Facilitators: Pam Tracy, Director, CAFE; Marcus Christian, Instructional Designer, DEC

This session will focus on best practices for creating and facilitating asynchronous and synchronous teaching and learning activities such as discussions, quizzes, think-pair-share, etc.

  • Friday, August 14 from 1:00-2:30pm

________________________________________________________________________________

Teaching, Learning and Effective Communication Practices

Facilitators: Pam Tracy, Director, CAFE; Julie Mersiowsky, Director, DEC; Dean Boyle, Instructional Technology Specialist

In this session, we will consider effective communication practices to stay connected with students, develop community, and encourage student resiliency within the specific context of your course(s). We will discuss specific relational and learning communication strategies and useful technology to help you achieve your goals.

  • Wednesday, August 19 from 1:00-2:30pm

________________________________________________________________________________

Collaborative Learning and Group Projects

Facilitators: Adam Franssen, Asst. Director, CAFE; Ashley Leslie, Instructional Designer, DEC

Effective collaborative learning is possible when instructors design activities and assignments that are meaningful and tied to course learning outcomes. In this session, we will discuss different approaches to incorporating group work, small group discussion, and other types of peer-to-peer learning in all learning environments.

  • Monday, August 17 from 1:00-2:30pm

_____________________________________________________________________________

Faculty well-being

Facilitators: TBA

  • Fridays @ CAFE Series August 28 from 3:00-4:30pm

____________________________________________________________________________

 

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DEC/CAFE Workshops for 2020

DEC/CAFE Workshops

Flexible Teaching and Learning Workshop Series

The Digital Education Collaborative (DEC) and the Center for Faculty Enrichment (CAFE) are offering a series of workshops to help instructors prepare courses for the fall 2020 semester. These workshops will focus on pedagogy (why we do what we do) and technology (how to use appropriate tools) for in-person, hybrid, and online teaching.  We will emphasize developing practices that are specific to your course context; therefore, prior to each session, faculty will complete a situational analysis of the course(s). Each session will be 90 minutes with the option of an additional 30 minutes small group discussion for more focused mentoring. All workshops before August 17th are Zoom sessions; beginning August 17th, participants will have an in-person or remote option.

To register, click here!

If you are unable to attend a workshop, CAFE and DEC offer one-on-one appointments and small group sessions for programs and departments.

Course Design 101+

Facilitators: Pam Tracy, Director, CAFE; Julie Mersiowsky, Director, DEC

In this session, we will begin with the principles and practices of backward course design to facilitate aligning student learning outcomes with assignments with learning activities. Building on your course design, we will walk through a Canvas course template that you can use in your courses.

  • Monday, August 10 from 1-2:30pm

________________________________________________________________________________

Flexible Learning Environments: How to Blend or Flip Your Classroom

Facilitators: Julie Mersiowsky, Director, DEC; Adam Franssen, Asst. Director, CAFE

Within the context of one course, blended teaching and learning takes place both asynchronously and synchronously–in person and virtually.  When you flip your classroom, students study course content outside of class and class time is devoted to activities that provide students with the opportunity to practice and engage with course content.  In both environments, active learning and engagement are emphasized. In this workshop, you will identify activities and assignments within your class(es) that lend themselves to be flipped or blended into online or remote environments.

  • Wednesday, August 12 from 1-2:30pm

________________________________________________________________________________

Teaching Writing Online

Facilitators: Heather Lettner-Rust, CAFE Teaching Writing Consultant; Marcus Christian, Instructional Designer, DEC

Using writing as a thinking and assessment tool for teaching is a great way to understand where your students are. You’ll see their strengths and their gaps in thinking and in style. As we move forward to the fall, teaching and using writing in the online classroom can be a useful shift in tools that supplement or replace your current practices. During the workshop, we will discuss ways to support your course outcomes and ways to utilize tools already in Canvas (paper markup, electronic rubrics, and Grade Assist).

  • Tuesday, August 18 from 1-2:30pm

________________________________________________________________________________

Teaching Speaking

Facilitators: Kris Paal, Teaching Speaking Consultant, CAFE; Ronda Scarrow, Teaching Speaking Consultant, CAFE; Marcus Christian, Instructional Designer, DEC

With fall quickly approaching, join us  for an in-depth presentation and discussion on how to reach your student learning outcomes through engaging speaking assignments, instruction, and delivery options for students.  During the workshop we will discuss such things as audience analysis, creating speaking content, delivery approaches, and rubrics.  Additionally, we will address best practices for creating and assessing speaking assignments in an online environment, with attention given to technology resources available through Canvas and beyond.

  • Friday, August 21 from 1-2:30pm

________________________________________________________________________________

Diversity, Inclusion, Equity in all Learning Environments

How Do I Manage this?: Integrating Diversity, Inclusion, and the Lived Experience into the Learning Environment

Facilitators: Dana Miller Kieran, Director of Disability Resources/ADA Coordinator; Shayla Betts, Assistant Professor of Social Work; Jonathan Page, Director of Multicultural Affairs

In recent events, from the pandemic through the climate of social unrest, it is now more important than ever that faculty and staff meet the needs of our students in and beyond the classroom.  In this session, we will focus on strategies and practical takeaways to implement within courses, provide an understanding of backgrounds and characteristics of students as they return to campus, and address key pedagogical challenges that the current climate has created.  Additional supporting resources will be provided.

  • Thursday, August 20 from 1-2:30pm

________________________________________________________________________________

Designing Assignments and Learning Activities

Facilitators: Pam Tracy, Director, CAFE; Marcus Christian, Instructional Designer, DEC

This session will focus on best practices for creating and facilitating asynchronous and synchronous teaching and learning activities such as discussions, quizzes, think-pair-share, etc.

  • Friday, August 14 from 1:00-2:30pm

________________________________________________________________________________

Teaching, Learning and Effective Communication Practices

Facilitators: Pam Tracy, Director, CAFE; Julie Mersiowsky, Director, DEC; Dean Boyle, Instructional Technology Specialist

In this session, we will consider effective communication practices to stay connected with students, develop community, and encourage student resiliency within the specific context of your course(s). We will discuss specific relational and learning communication strategies and useful technology to help you achieve your goals.

  • Wednesday, August 19 from 1:00-2:30pm

________________________________________________________________________________

Collaborative Learning and Group Projects

Facilitators: Adam Franssen, Asst. Director, CAFE; Ashley Leslie, Instructional Designer, DEC

Effective collaborative learning is possible when instructors design activities and assignments that are meaningful and tied to course learning outcomes. In this session, we will discuss different approaches to incorporating group work, small group discussion, and other types of peer-to-peer learning in all learning environments.

  • Monday, August 17 from 1:00-2:30pm

_____________________________________________________________________________

Faculty well-being

Facilitators: TBA

  • Fridays @ CAFE Series August 28 from 3:00-4:30pm

____________________________________________________________________________

 

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Fall Semester Updates: Online classes, face coverings and more

As a resident of Farmville, I have been seeing signs around town that the beginning of the academic year is drawing near. The number of cars at rental properties is growing, and there’s more traffic on Main Street.

Soon students who live in Longwood-managed housing will arrive in vehicles packed with “essentials” that mom and/or dad will help them haul into the places they’ll call home for the next eight months or so. Keeping those “essentials” to a minimum is even more important this year than ever. Precautions prevent us from having our usual contingent of volunteers to help with move-in, so your student will be relying on up to three family members or friends to help. More move-in information is available here.

Even though 2020-21 will be different, there’s a lot that will be the same—including the sense of excitement and possibilities that comes with a new school year.

The plan for the semester continues to evolve, and your student received an email this past Friday detailing some new elements in that plan. Our What Will Fall Look Like? page has been updated with this new information that will help your student prepare to return to campus.

Here are a couple of especially important updates:

  • About 20 percent of classes this fall will be taught fully online. If your student is registered for a course that is moving from in person to fully online, they will be notified via email by the end of the day Friday, Aug. 7. The updates regarding class format can be found through the my.longwood.edu portal in your student’s “Week at a Glance.” If you have any questions about online classes, please email questions@longwood.edu.
  • Face coverings will be required in public areas of Longwood-managed housing at all times.

Additional updates on our What Will Fall Look Like? page include information about how to keep safe prior to arriving on campus and what to pack.

Most importantly, please remind your student that a successful fall semester depends on their strictly following recommended guidelines: wearing a face covering, social distancing and frequently washing their hands. If they want to have a successful semester, they must do their part.

When Covid-19 is detected on campus, Longwood has a plan in place for effectively dealing with it. You can read about that plan here under the heading: When Covid-19 Cases Appear on Campus.

Finally, please ask your student to keep a close eye on their Longwood email. We will continue to stay in touch as campus move-in approaches.

—Sabrina Brown

 

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Welcome!

Thank you for visiting my Honors College ePortfolio. Please enjoy viewing my general education and honors classes, as well as many other experiences I have had the opportunity to do because of the Honors College and Longwood University. I hope you enjoy!

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SCHEV approves fall reopening plan, classroom reconfiguration is under way

You may be aware that Gov. Northam has required each institution of higher education in Virginia to submit detailed plans covering all aspects of their reopening plans for the fall.

Longwood found out today that its plan—which was submitted last month—has been approved by the State Council of Higher Education for Virginia (SCHEV).

The plan includes multiple aspects of dealing with the Covid-19 pandemic, including
—Social distancing
—Hygiene
—Housing and dining adaptations
—Protections for vulnerable individuals
—Workplace safety measures
—Health care policies and resources
—Procedures for responding to positive Covid-19 cases
—Communicating with the campus and local community

Longwood’s comprehensive planning documents, which are available on Longwood’s main Covid-19 website, were reviewed by SCHEV and the Virginia Department of Health. Approval means that the plan contains all 26 required components. It will  continue to evolve and be updated along with changing guidance and as planning continues.

A key part of the planning for fall is rearranging classrooms so that every student and faculty member inside is socially distanced. Leading this effort at Longwood is Russ Carmichael, director of planning and real estate services, who says the university’s plan exceeds Centers for Disease Control guidelines for social distancing inside buildings.

Longwood’s rearrangement of the chairs, tables, desks, lecterns and other furniture in every classroom on campus will result in at least—if not more than—6 feet of distance between all students and faculty while they are in class, he said.

“We began the process by taking measurements of each room and coming up with an estimate of what we could fit into each space. We then fed the dimensions of each classroom and existing furniture into a space-maximization computer program,” Carmichael said. “It returns a recommended arrangement. We use the computer output to best arrange furniture in a way that maximizes class seating availability while ensuring we aren’t compromising any spacing specifications.

“Each classroom is being assessed multiple times to ensure that social distancing is followed,” he added.

Because of the spacing requirements, each classroom will lose between 50 and 60 percent of its capacity, which means, for example, that a classroom with a normal capacity of 40 people will now be able to accommodate fewer than 20.

“It’s going to require some creativity when Academic Affairs staff assign classes to their rooms, but we can do it,” Carmichael said.

I hope you’ll take a few minutes to read the full Q&A with Carmichael, which you can find here.

—Sabrina Brown

 

 

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A successful fall semester is up to all of us

As parents, I know you have lots of questions about what campus life will look like and how classes will work in the fall for your student.

To give you a clearer picture as plans evolve, we have recently updated our  Fall 2020 Covid-19 web page and our What Will Fall Look Like overview. Both of these provide information about classes, social distancing, face coverings, dining, testing, health care resources and other important topics related to the fall 2020 semester.

Working closely with the commonwealth, Centers for Disease Control and the Virginia Department of Health, and following their guidance, we are still finalizing the details of some aspects of the plan. Your student will receive additional information in the weeks ahead, including an updated Student Handbook.

Faculty, staff and administrators are diligently getting ready for the return of students this fall. We know they’re excited to return—and we’re excited to have them back. All of us—students and parents included—have a part to play in accomplishing this safely.

Tim Pierson, vice president for student affairs, put it this way in an email to students yesterday: “Making this year work will depend on each member of our community owning their responsibilities to help mitigate the spread of Covid-19. Success for the school year will be up to all of us.”

Below are some essential components of a successful return to campus that Dr. Pierson and Dean of Students Jennifer Fraley communicated to students in that email. Your support of these guidelines is critical. Please encourage your student to follow them conscientiously with not only their own health and safety in mind but also that of their professors, their fellow students and the staff that keep the campus running smoothly. We also respectfully ask that you show your support by following any guidelines that are applicable to you if you visit campus.

If you have any questions, please don’t hesitate to send them to questions@longwood.edu.

Also this week, we were happy and relieved by the news that the proposed Department of Homeland Security directive regarding international students has been withdrawn. While it did not appear to affect Longwood as directly as many other institutions, our international student community is relatively small but deeply valued and will continue to have our full support. Longwood’s Center for Global Engagement continues to monitor the situation and work to help our students navigate a range of complicated travel and other issues related to returning to campus this fall.

Thank you for entrusting your student to Longwood. It’s a responsibility we take very seriously, especially in these challenging times.

—Sabrina Brown

Regarding New Covid-19 Guidelines: Excerpt from the July 15 email sent to students by Vice President for Student Affairs Tim Pierson and Dean of Students Jennifer Fraley 

Monitor your own health, and do your part to protect others. Follow the steps and guidelines Longwood is taking across campus to encourage social distancing. If you have symptoms, or are sick (with Covid-19 or otherwise), seek medical attention and don’t go to class. There are people in our community who may have higher risks than you. Commit to habits—from hand washing to face coverings to social distancing—that will help keep you well and ensure you’re not the one to pass on the virus.

Wear a face covering. Face coverings will be required this fall during all classes, in between classes, and at all times in many parts of campus. They should be worn anytime on campus when you cannot maintain six feet of distance. Get used to wearing a face covering, always have one with you, and make wearing one your default.

Own your academic responsibilities. This is always an important part of your education. If you need to miss class because you are sick or are required to isolate, communicate with your faculty. Be assured, faculty will be there to support you with the resources for you to keep up with or make up classwork.

Citizenship. The Farmville community wants Longwood to be vibrant again. Around the country, there have been stories about Covid-19 spreading among college-age students ignoring health guidelines at crowded parties and events. People are wondering whether students will really do their part for their community, and to make college work this year, by acting responsibly. Prove those who doubt your commitment to our community wrong. Wear a face covering, socially distance, and avoid crowds, especially indoors. If our community members see Longwood students acting responsibly around campus and town, it won’t just help stop the spread of the virus, it will build trust that we’ll need to make this semester successful. This is what citizen leadership is all about—leading by example to do your individual part for the greater good.

In closing, one of the things that’s really different about Longwood is our honor code. When we each take it upon ourselves to behave honorably, trust and community follow, making Longwood more special. In the same way, if we all do our part and behave honorably in response to this pandemic, we will be able to experience what matters most about Longwood this year.

It’s in our hands, together.

 

 

 

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Hello world!

Welcome to my Honors ePortfolio!

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