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June 4, 2020: Town Hall + Campus Next Steps

Message from Fall Planning Group

June 4, 2020

Dear ESU Faculty, Staff and Students,

Now that we have entered June, our focus traditionally turns to preparation for the fall semester. With the COVID-19 pandemic of 2020, the summer work we all put in is more important than ever. We also know from experience that these summer months will fly by.

We want you to know where we, as the Fall Planning Group, are currently in planning, how you can assist with this planning and what steps we believe will come next.

Most importantly, please know that our overall goal is a gradual return to full on-campus operations. We do this for the common good — bringing back people slowly will continue to reduce the possible spread of COVID-19.

Stages of Return

First, we have developed four stages of return with tentative dates assigned to them. These dates are advisory only as we all know circumstances could and probably will change.

  • Stage 1 — Planning + Communication — through June 12
  • Stage 2 — Prepare for On-Campus SUMMER2 Classes + Stage 3 — June 15-26 (tentative dates)
  • Stage 3 — Support SUMMER2 + Prepare for FALL/Stage 4 — June 29-July 31 (tentative dates)
  • Stage 4 — On campus preparing for start of FALL — begins Aug. 3 (tentative dates)

Department supervisors began work last week outlining how they and their staff would return to campus for work. These plans will be approved by vice presidents before they are considered official.

Be assured that you will receive at least one week notice of the date you need to return to campus for work. We are sure some supervisors will be able to give longer notice. Please do not come to campus for work until the date you are given.

Virtual Town Hall — Tuesday, June 9, 10 a.m.

President Garrett and Diana Kuhlmann, vice president for administration and fiscal affairs, will host a virtual Town Hall to discuss return to campus next steps and to provide a budget update. You can register and pre-submit questions at

Other Teams

To navigate the myriad of details involved in returning to campus for fall, we have a number of subgroups working on specific topics. Some of these teams may have reached out to you for assistance. You will receive communication as they have information to share. These task teams and their chairs include:

  • Academic Affairs — David Cordle
  • Athletics — Kent Weiser
  • Classroom + Instruction — Joan Brewer
  • Faculty Readiness — David Cordle
  • Large Events + Functions — Jim Williams
  • Reintegration to Campus — Ray Lauber
  • Residential Life + Move-In — Cass Coughlin

Future Communication

We will share information for campus via email. Because of technical issues created by our recent remote work environment, some messages are going to spam. Be sure to check your spam (Symantec) queue as well as Junk and Clutter folders within Outlook regularly.

We also will post information and resources on the new Return to Campus section of the ESU website — Our Return to Campus section is the same concept the university used for sharing COVID-19 information. It includes a form to submit questions.

As always, we thank you for the work you continue to do from home for Emporia State. We will move forward together toward fall 2020.


Fall Planning Group