March 19, 2020
Dear SBU family:
Due to continued developments in the COVID-19 outbreak within the United States, Southwest Baptist University will move all course delivery online for the remainder of the Spring 2020 semester. Spring Break has been extended through March 23-27 to provide additional time for our faculty and staff to prepare alternative instructional and support strategies. Courses will resume online on March 30, and the semester will end on May 15 as originally scheduled.
As a husband, father, son, and higher education leader, this crisis has affected every area of my life, too. While we know this decision is disruptive and disappointing for us all, we must implement extraordinary and temporary measures for the wellness of our SBU community and broader communities we are proud to serve. Everyone within our SBU family, from students to employees, is feeling an extra level of uncertainty surrounding COVID-19 and our collective response to this outbreak. I am, however, certain we have to do things differently in the coming weeks.
For faculty and staff
For more-specific information, read the Frequently Asked Questions at SBUniv.edu/coronavirus.
Students already are telling us they miss being at SBU—be assured, we miss you too. We remain committed to helping you pursue academic, social and spiritual growth through your SBU education. We are exploring unique ways to engage our campus communities while we are not together on our campuses.
Seniors are missing out on some “lasts” of their college experience. Many student-athletes have lost an entire season — the senior season for some. I do not like this impact any more than you do. There are no substitutes for the top-drawer, in-person instruction, and residential experiences SBU provides.
Thank you to everyone for your agility and patience as we work through these unexpected times together. Continue to monitor our website at SBUniv.edu/coronavirus, social media channels, MySBU portal and your SBU email address for continuing updates as more information becomes available. If you have trouble accessing these resources, send an email to helpdesk@SBUniv.edu.
Throughout our 142-year history, the University has faced daunting problems and concerns, yet time and again, we have proven ourselves to be resilient and kept our focus and faith in our Lord.
The Verse of the Week shared on SBU’s social media this week is 2 Timothy 1:7, “For God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.” I urge you to put your trust in the Lord and refrain from living with a spirit of fear, but rather with a spirit of love. Be a servant leader wherever you are. Alongside completing your coursework or work obligations, look for opportunities to love your neighbors, share the Gospel, and make an impact in your local community. Now is your time to shine, Bearcats, and be a light to the world.
Please take care of yourself and each other. We love you, and can hardly wait to see you again on one of our campuses.
Shaping our story together,
Dr. Eric A. Turner