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Fall 2020 Planning Process

Fall 2020 Planning Process

With the health and safety of our University community at the top of our minds, we are welcoming students back to our campuses this fall. As we work to deliver on our academic mission in the midst of a global pandemic, we recognize this will be a fall unlike any other. We have engaged expertise across our campus to plan the best possible student experience while reducing any risk to our campuses and the communities we serve. 

Planning Process

We have convened eight work groups that include students, faculty, and staff focused on various planning aspects as we look toward fall. The co-chairs of each group, along with leaders from each of our five senates and functional managers across campus, are representing their areas on a Coordinating Council tasked with developing clear recommendations for our fall semester.

Report and Recommendations

Click the name of a working group to reveal its goal(s) and membership.

Public Health Planning (PHP)

The Public Health Planning working group serves as a liaison with community partners — engaging with community public health officials, communities, and CDC/state/federal for guidance, especially to understand capacity of local health institutions in case of a possible outbreak or surge. This working group is also responsible for communicating clearly with communities.

PHP will develop test, trace, and quarantine recommendations, working in conjunction with include public health faculty, including Epidemiology faculty, the Dean of the Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine, and Housing — if necessary. 


PPE Planning and Procurement (PPE)

The PPE Planning and Procurement working group includes all supply procurement, including medical supplies and PPE, as recommended in coordination with Public Health Planning, above. 


Academic Scenario Planning (ASP)

The Academic Scenario Planning (ASP) working group is charged with planning for various teaching and learning modalities, working with colleges, departments/schools, and RHE to ensure coordination.     


Student Experiences/Student Life (SESL)

The Student Experiences/Student Life (SESL) working group is focused on safe use of student spaces — including libraries, housing, culinary facilities, classrooms, student centers, etc. — across all campuses, as well as planning for campus and public events (not including athletic spaces or events.)


Academic Policy and Process (APP)

The Academic Policy and Process (APP) working group is an existing shared governance group — a subcommittee of the University Curriculum Council for academic policy issues — and is responsible for coordinating changes in academic policy, process, and systems. APP will triage and coordinate other policy groups, departments, etc. as necessary. 


Research and Creative Activity (RCA)

The Research Creative Activity (RCA) working group is the leading research approval request group and has expanded inquiry to include safer creative activity and performance. 

The Research and Creative Activity work group has developed measures to allow the resumption of research and creative activity on campus and in outdoor settings, under certain conditions:


Clinicals, Practica, and Internships


Back to Work Safely Group (BWSG)

The Back to Work Safely Group (BWSG) is responsible for developing workforce density and workforce equipment strategies, coordinating cleaning of occupied spaces, creating HR policies for higher risk employees and students, and assessing legal issues around workforce.  


  • Colleen Bendl - Chief Human Resource Officer, Finance and Administration; co-chair
  • Steve Wood - Chief Facilities Officer, Facilities Management; co-chair
  • Greg-Victor Obi - Assistant Professor, Business Management Technology - Chillicothe Campus
  • Zelalem T. Haile - Assistant Professor, COM-Social Medicine
  • Laura Myers - Deputy Chief Strategy and Innovation Officer, Strategy and Innovation
  • Mike Courtney - Legal Counsel, Legal Affairs
  • Greg Fialko - Senior HR Director/Director of Benefits, Human Resources
  • Jen Bennett - Executive Director, Wellworks
  • Sarah Wyatt - Professor, Environmental and Plant Biology
  • Jill Harris - Manager, Risk Management and Safety
  • Rosanna Howard - Director, Budget Ops, RHE, University Outreach
  • Tia Hysell - Director, Transportation and Parking
  • Carly Leatherwood - Sr. Director of Communication Services, University Communications and Marketing
  • Steve Mack - Interim Executive Director, Facilities Management
  • Brent Mattox - Director of Safety, Environmental Health and Safety
  • Rich Neumann - Director of Culinary Services, Culinary Services
  • Nicole Pennington - Executive Dean, Regional Higher Education
  • Joe Shields - Vice President for Research, Research
  • Adam Loukx - Legal Counsel, Legal Affairs
  • Melissa Weaver - IT Service Owner, OIT
  • Lewis Mangen - Director of Organizational and Talent Development, Human Resources
  • Carey Busch - Interim Dean, University College

Coordinating Council

Led by Brad Cohen, Chief Strategy and Innovation Officer, and Laura Myers, Deputy Chief Strategy and Innovation Officer. Includes the co-chairs of each of the above, as well as the following representatives from athletics, communications, legal, finance, OIT, and enrollment management.

As information about the virus continues to evolve, we will adjust as necessary. We recognize the need to be prepared to respond to changes in the trajectory of the virus and decisions made by the state to protect the health and safety of our campus communities.


Progress on Planning

The Comprehensive Report and Recommendations of the Fall 2020 Planning Work Groups was submitted to the President on June 15. Revisions were made with input from leadership of the five senates, and the University has adopted the recommendations as published here.

Report and Recommendations

Share Your Feedback

We greatly value your ideas and input regarding plans for reopening in the fall. Your points of consideration will be delivered to and considered by leadership and others involved with reopening plans. 


View Collected Feedback