To the Temple community:
Today, I want to tell you about some changes to the spring academic calendar.
As are other institutions, we will delay the start of the semester for graduate and undergraduate students only. Temple’s spring semester will be delayed eight days, and begin on Tuesday, Jan. 19. This will give students who leave campus for the winter break at least two full weeks after New Year’s Day to self-quarantine, either at home or in off-campus housing, before the start of spring classes. The Philadelphia Department of Public Health strongly recommends students self-quarantine before returning to the city for classes.
There is an additional benefit to the delayed start. The extra time will give schools and colleges the opportunity to offer online, short-duration winter session courses. This will allow students to either accelerate their academic progress or lighten their academic loads at some future time and still stay on course for graduation. These courses will be considered part of students’ spring registration. We of course hope students take advantage of these opportunities.
One final but important schedule change that is also in line with what many universities are doing: As a result of the late start, spring break will be canceled, so that we can remain healthy and on schedule for the rest of the academic year. Last year’s experience taught us that travel during spring break led to multiple positive cases among students, both nationwide and abroad. This decision is an additional way of keeping our community healthy and safe.
Please look for additional information on our enhanced testing plans, the spring course schedule, on-campus housing and other campus details, which will be coming in a series of announcements starting in the next several days.
Until then, let me remind you that it is more important than ever to follow Temple’s four public health pillars: monitor your health, wear a mask, wash your hands and keep a physical distance. I know it can be fatiguing at times, but as we head toward colder weather and spending more time indoors, these pillars are vital to maintaining a healthy community.
We remain in this together so we can be together. Stay well.
JoAnne A. Epps
Executive Vice President and Provost