Fairleigh Dickinson University continues to take measures to reduce the risks concerning COVID-19, also known as the coronavirus. We are planning in line with recommendations from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), U.S. Department of State and the State of New Jersey Department of Health, as well as Canadian federal and British Columbia health authorities for our Vancouver Campus, and the Department of Health and Social Care in the United Kingdom for Wroxton College. In accordance with state guidelines, on July 17 FDU submitted to the New Jersey Office of the Secretary of Higher Education its Plan for Reopening Its New Jersey Campuses.
The University’s notifications regarding the coronavirus will be posted here in reverse chronological order so that all messages are available and the most recent appear first. Related information for reference is also provided as links shown on this page. Members of the University community who are feeling ill or who are aware of someone who is feeling ill should review the Student, Faculty and Staff Health sections of Coronavirus Information from HR.
November 25, 2020
President’s Update – Giving Thanks
Dear Students, Faculty, and Staff,
I write today with great appreciation for all that we have overcome, and for all that you have done to help us deal with a unique and challenging, but yet very successful, fall semester. I know there were moments when anxiety about this semester troubled us all, but we persevered through those anxieties, we met the challenges we faced, and we made it to the finish line. Frankly, I am in awe of everything this community has done, and I am immensely thankful.
I’ve talked many times about the resilience and fortitude of our community. FDU and its students and alumni have long been known for their courage, tenacity, and determination. While I wish we didn’t have to demonstrate those traits so often, it has been remarkable to see our community come together in support of one another.
I am very proud of you all, and I understand how much we have asked of you. We asked faculty and staff to make many sacrifices while continuing their roles — in-person when possible, but virtual for the most part — to inspire and support our students. We asked students to be patient, to attend FDU with limited physical interaction, and to stay focused on continuing to complete their degrees during chaotic times. Perhaps most of all, though, we asked everyone to take responsibility for each other, to take all safety precautions possible, and to continually be ever so vigilant. You all have done what we asked and more, and again I am very thankful.
I said over the summer that we could be a model for how to persevere during a pandemic and that is exactly what you have done. You have demonstrated that it is possible to continue our mission while taking precautions to keep everyone as safe as possible and minimize transmission of COVID-19 on our campuses. As of yesterday, the last day of the fall semester, we had just 17 positive COVID tests across both New Jersey campuses since late August. That is remarkable. Kudos to everyone!
Our mission is critical, and FDU continues to gain distinction and momentum. As you recall, this semester we reached the Top 50 in the North for the first time in the U.S. News & World Report rankings, and U.S. News and Money magazine praised FDU as among the best values in our region and the nation.
This semester we managed to exceed expectations with very strong enrollment numbers, as we welcomed more than 1,200 freshmen and new transfer students. While our resident population was understandably limited, we have plans in place to bring more students on campus in the spring.
During the pandemic we have accelerated our efforts to create greater accessibility and affordability for our students. We froze tuition this year and will freeze tuition again next year, marking three consecutive years of the same tuition rate. We offered significant discounts for summer sessions, and we are now providing similar discounts for winter sessions. And, we reduced tuition for incoming students next fall, which we hope will make an FDU education affordable and accessible to more students. In addition, we expanded our fund-raising efforts to focus on scholarships for our students.
Our academic restructuring took effect this semester and we have made important strides in coordinating programs (and the class schedule) across both New Jersey campuses, and reducing unnecessary duplication across our campuses as well. And those efforts will continue.
We all are aware of the financial challenges posed by the pandemic, so we acknowledge the continuing need to use resources wisely and ensure our operations are as efficient as possible. Working together, we will successfully navigate these challenges and emerge an even better university.
As we move toward the spring semester, there remain many uncertainties. We are planning for more in-person courses and more on-campus activities in the spring, and we are hopeful that that will be the case. But the truth is we don’t know exactly what will happen come late January. So we will again ask for your patience and understanding as we plan for multiple contingencies.
When I think of this past semester and all that we have been through, I am reminded of the words of Martin Luther King, Jr., who said:
“If you can’t fly then run, if you can’t run then walk, if you can’t walk then crawl, but whatever you do you have to keep moving forward.”
We indeed will keep moving forward. We have learned many lessons that will pay dividends many times over. We will emerge stronger and more united as a community. And we will have many brighter days ahead.
Please enjoy a wonderful and safe holiday. Happy Thanksgiving to everyone, their families, and loved ones!
Yours in FDU,
Christopher A. Capuano, Ph.D.
Links to Updates
November 25: New Jersey Campuses Health and Safety Update
November 25: President’s Update – Giving Thanks
November 18: New Jersey Campuses Health and Safety Update
November 11: New Jersey Campuses Health and Safety Update
November 4: New Jersey Campuses Health and Safety Update
October 28: New Jersey Campuses Health and Safety Update
October 21: New Jersey Campuses Health and Safety Update
October 16: President’s Update – Spring 2021 Semester
October 14: New Jersey Campuses Health and Safety Update
October 7: New Jersey Campuses Health and Safety Update
September 30: New Jersey Campuses Health and Safety Update
September 23: New Jersey Campuses Health and Safety Update
September 21: Study Abroad and Wroxton College
September 16: New Jersey Campuses Health and Safety Update
September 9: New Jersey Campuses Health and Safety Update
September 2: New Jersey Campuses Health and Safety Update
September 1: President’s Update – United for Our Students
August 17: President’s Update – Welcome to Fall 2020
August 10: President’s Update – Fall 2020 Semester
July 31: President’s Update – Returning to Campus
July 20: President’s Update – Fall 2020 Semester Reopening Plan
July 7: President’s Update – Preparing for Fall 2020 Semester
June 12: President’s Update – Supporting Our Students
June 4: Task Force for Campus Re-occupancy and Operations.
May 29: President’s Update – The Fall 2020 Semester.
May 8: President’s Update – Planning for the Fall 2020 Semester.
April 20: President’s Update – Important Cost-Saving Measures.
April 9: President’s Update – A Note of Appreciation.
April 9: Deadline Extension for Student Withdrawal from Classes.
April 7: All Summer Sessions for 2020.
April 3: Update on Pass/Fail Option for Spring Semester 2020.
April 2: Graduate Summer Sessions 2020.
March 30: Undergraduate Summer Sessions 2020.
March 25: President’s Update – Commencement.
March 25: Pass/Fail Option for Undergraduate Students for Spring Semester 2020.
March 20: President’s Update – Remote Learning Extended for Remainder of Spring Semester.
March 20: Pass/Fail Option for Undergraduate Students for Spring Semester 2020.
March 15: President’s Update – Latest Actions Related to COVID-19 Pandemic.
March 13: Wroxton College Students to Return Home.
March 10: President’s Update on Moving to Remote Learning.
March 9: Working together as a community and an update on potential self-isolation.
March 6: Update on travel restrictions and recommendations, and a travel registry for faculty and staff.
March 2: Update on University-sponsored international trips as well as more travel-related news.
February 28: Update on international travel, study abroad, our international campuses and necessary precautions.