May 13, 2020
Dear juniors, sophomores, and first-years,
Provost Strobel wrote earlier today to announce that instruction will continue in the fall and that details about the calendar will be announced later this month. Even then, questions will remain about what residential education and life on campus will look like next semester. The university's first priority is to protect the health and welfare of students, faculty, and other members of the Yale and New Haven communities. Committees working on reopening campus safely will be making recommendations to the President and Provost over the next few weeks, and I will also be consulting with the Yale College Council in order to gather student ideas and perspectives on both academic continuity and residential life. Whatever recommendations emerge, we should anticipate that residential life will be constrained by social distancing requirements until a vaccine and robust treatments are developed. I know that many of you need more information in order to make your plans, so I will write in late May with more details about the calendar, and again by early July – once the university announces its plans about residential education – with further guidance to help you.
In the meantime, I seek information from you so that I can address your more immediate questions about retrieving your belongings left on campus as soon and as safely as possible. In anticipation of a phased reopening of Connecticut’s businesses, I am arranging options for you to secure your belongings. Please communicate your preferences and help my staff finalize its plans by completing this non-binding survey by May 21. After the survey closes, a coordinator will contact you with more concrete information and a more formal opportunity for you to decide and confirm your plans, knowing that you may wish to postpone your decision until the university has announced its plans about residential education. For now, please refrain from directing questions about belongings to your residential college head or dean because they do not have additional information.
I appreciate your patience and understanding in this challenging moment, and I want to assure you that reuniting you with your belongings as soon as possible is a top priority. As questions and concerns arise, please use the survey to convey them. Even if we cannot respond with more detail than provided here, we will do our best to keep the FAQ page updated with useful information. I will write directly with any important new updates, so please continue to check your e-mail, at least weekly. I will send my next message later this month, when I hope to confirm details about the fall calendar. Until then and beyond, please stay safe and well.
Marvin M. Chun
Dean of Yale College
Richard M. Colgate Professor of Psychology; Neuroscience; Cognitive Science