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Information and Support

April 30, 2020
From: 
Stephen Mull, Vice Provost for Global Affairs and Allen W. Grove, University Dean of Students

Dear UVA International Student and Scholar:

As we have grappled with the public health emergency associated with the COVID-19 pandemic, the University of Virginia has made a number of important decisions about the University’s operations. These changes have affected the entire community in dramatic ways; they have had especially significant effects on our international students and scholars. We write to assure you that you are an integral part of our community, and we are committed to supporting you through these unprecedented challenges.

This has been a rapidly changing situation with new information emerging almost every day. The single most important goal remains doing our part to slow the spread of COVID-19, while continuing our missions as best we can, and making certain that our own community is cared for, supported, and remains safe.

The coronavirus continues to spread nationally and in the Charlottesville area as well, but mitigation efforts fortunately have helped to “flatten the curve.” For those of you who have returned to your home countries, I hope the transition to a virtual academic environment has gone relatively smoothly and you have found assistance when needed. We will also help you access summer courses remotely, as they become available, so you will be able to continue your instruction if you wish to do so.

For students who remain in Charlottesville in our residence halls, the University is pleased to extend University housing on Grounds from May 9 to May 24 at no additional cost. You can read the detailed housing message here. As noted in this message, if you are unable to return home when you leave on-Grounds housing in May, you are encouraged to begin thinking now about your housing plans for the summer. You may wish to check the University’s off-Grounds housing partners’ website, offgroundshousing.student.virginia.edu. There you can create an account and search for short-term rentals and summer sublets, according to your needs and plans.

As the U.S. continues to deal nationally with the pandemic, we cannot predict the complications that may arise from policy changes in the U.S. and other countries, including visa delays, border closures, and reduced travel options. Before undertaking any travel in connection with your enrollment at UVA, please continue to look for information from UVA’s International Studies Office and refer to your local U.S. embassy’s website through the U.S. Department of State for updates.

The International Studies Office remains available to work with you in considering options for managing the challenges connected with your enrollment during this difficult time. Please reach out to issp@virginia.edu with any questions or concerns.

Regardless of these challenges, one thing is certain: we are absolutely committed to continue providing a high-quality education to all our students, including our international community, and overcome the pandemic-related obstacles we face together. Recently, President Ryan charged a planning committee to develop recommendations for the upcoming fall semester. Provost Magill is chairing the Fall 2020 Planning Committee, and it includes representation from across the University. The committee will consider a number of topics about the fall, including multiple scenarios around the academic delivery of courses. Additional information about the committee can be found here.

We would also like to take this opportunity to affirm our commitment to international diversity at UVA. Xenophobia and racism (bias) have no place in our community. As we work together and care for each other in this time of crisis, here are some resources you might find helpful: Community Care Statement and Resources. You should promptly report any acts of bias by using the Just Report It website.

We will continue to reach out to you with updates and information as needed. Please reach out to us with any questions or if you need support during this time.

Sincerely,

Stephen Mull
Vice Provost for Global Affairs

Allen W. Groves
University Dean of Students