As articulated by Governor Ralph Northam on June 11, 2020, in anticipation that conditions at the state, regional and local levels are conducive to an institution of higher education conducting in-person instruction and on-campus educational operations in academic year 2020-21, the Virginia University of Integrative Medicine submitted a campus reopening plan in early July for state compliance review.
The plan has been reviewed by the State Council of Higher Education and has been found to be compliant in containing the required components of the “Higher Education Reopening Guidance”, which was developed in consultation with the Virginia Department of Health.
March 24, 2020
Dear VUIM Community,
I’m writing today to share further important updates regarding the University’s operations in response to our ongoing challenges with the COVID-19 outbreak.
At this time, as we continue to monitor and watch the situation unfold locally and across the country, it appears that even a community as small as ours must contribute to doing what we can to slow the progression of this virus and “flatten the curve” in an effort to avoid overwhelming our health system. As many institutions across the country have modeled in the days prior, we will need to take some significant, additional steps at VUIM as well.
Cancellation of On-Campus Spring Quarter Clinical Training
As mentioned in my previous March 12th announcement, We will be moving all of our Spring 2020 Quarter classes, online; we will not be holding didactic courses on campus this Spring. Moreover, it appears unlikely that this virus will have abated by early April. In the interest of planning the best experience we can for the start of our Spring Quarter we are making the decision to cancel our on-campus learning experiences in their entirety.
For those of you registered and enrolled for Clinical Observation, Internships, and Case Studies, your registration status for those courses will be adjusted to reflect the cancellation of our on-campus clinical training by the Registrar’s office. This will occur over the next few days. Students who have completed payment for their Spring Quarter Clinical training will have the paid tuition credited to their student account in Populi.
The cancellation of On-Campus clinical training applies to all of our degree programs: Masters, DAOM, Professional Doctorate.
However, there is one positive note we do want to share: the national organizations in our field (specifically CCAOM and ACAOM) are currently evaluating potential options schools such as ours may consider pursuing in an effort to avoid a complete suspension of Clinical Training programs. We believe there may be an option to complete part of your clinical requirements, online, over the course of this next quarter. As further updates and alternatives become available to allow students to continue their clinical training online, we will share those possibilities and plans with all of you.
Changes to Didactic Lecture Courses
Along with the cancellation of On-campus Clinical Training, VUIM will be:
- Closing low enrolled courses.
- Consolidating identical courses previously scheduled to be offered in our Korean Language Track at both our VA and NJ campus locations. Students in the courses being affected will be contacted with further information.
- NOTE: Given the online modality of instruction being employed this term, without a physical location to attend, Korean-language Track students will temporarily be permitted to take any Korean course on the schedule as long as the courses enrolled do not conflict with another course for which they are enrolled.
- Reviewing our enrollment data and offering a few additional didactic courses based on our analysis of student population need. New Courses will be added to the schedule within the next 48 to 72 Hours.
The University Campus Will Be Closed to Students
Given the CDC, Federal, and State level guidance offered regarding the limitations on size of gatherings, we are choosing to cancel any group meetings and events on campus for the Spring 2020 Quarter. These restrictions include events that are not University-sponsored, such as the April CCAOM CNT workshop. We will continue to monitor the situation and make a decision about any changes and modifications to this policy in the weeks ahead that may allow the May CNT session to be conducted.
Access to Library resources on campus will not be available during this time. However, a separate email will be shared with students reminding everyone of the digital resources you have at your disposal as students of VUIM.
Graduation Exams will also remain postponed until a date to be set in the Summer 2020 Quarter. We will continue to keep everyone updated about our plans regarding the exam in the weeks ahead.
Please note, this does not preclude small internal meetings and appointments scheduled with University Admin/staff. In such cases, proper social distancing guidelines should be strictly practiced.
Spring 2020 DAOM and PD Courses Will Be Conducted Online
All DAOM courses scheduled for the Spring 2020 Quarter will be conducted online.
- CM770 Reproductive System: Western
- Taran Kermani
- 04/24/20 to 04/26/20
- CM770 Reproductive System: OM
- Caroline Radice
- 05/29/20 to 05/31/20
- CA700 Clinical Advancement I
- Lixing Lao
- 06/19/20 to 06/21/20
- ME600 Advanced Practice Management
- Jen Yocum
- 06/06, 06/13 and 06/07, 06/14
Further Information and details regarding the DAOM and PD course administration will be shared to registered students in the weeks ahead.
The VUIM 2020 Commencement Ceremony Will Not Proceed As Scheduled
In light of the mounting evidence regarding the expected progression of the virus over our Spring Quarter, we have made the difficult decision to cancel our 2020 Commencement Ceremony as currently scheduled. This was, by far, the most difficult decision for our University’s Administration to make and we did not do so lightly. This will undoubtedly be disappointing for all of our graduating students and their families. However, we are planning alternative methods of celebration as well as a postponed schedule that will still allow us to mark this important achievement for our students. As we near a formal decision and plan, we will share that information with the entire VUIM Community. One way or another we will honor the work and achievement of our students and offer a way to celebrate all of your hard work and dedication to our medicine.
The entire VUIM leadership, from the members of our Board to our Staff, acknowledge and regret that these additional steps will cause disruption and a level of sacrifice from all involved. But the reality is we’re left with very few alternatives at this time. Implementing these changes will be challenging and we know some of you may have further questions that will need to be addressed; we will be available to address those questions for everyone.
I want to take a moment to sincerely thank everyone in our community for your dedication to our mission, understanding of the situation at hand, and the compassion to creatively get through this situation with VUIM.
Chief Executive Officer
Virginia University of Integrative Medicine