Category: Messages to the Community

Title: Planning for Spring 2021 Semester for All Faculty and Staff

Date Published: November 17, 2020

Dear Colleagues:

Yesterday, President DeGioia sent you a note regarding Georgetown’s plan for the Spring 2021 semester. In his message, President DeGioia explained that while we plan to increase the number of undergraduate students living on-campus by 500 to bring our total to approximately 1,000, much of our instruction and operations will continue virtually. In addition, graduate students will be welcomed back to campus for some hybrid instruction and library access, and there will be some library access, some student organization activity and a limited program of hybrid instruction for law students. Following this announcement, we write to provide more information about how this change impacts our employee community.

Telework Status Review for Staff and AAP Employees

As we move towards the end of the Fall semester, each of us, along with the senior leaders on our campuses, will review our employee lists to make any necessary updates to telework status for the Spring 2021 semester. Given the planned increase in activity on our campuses, additional staff members supporting our work on campus may be required. By no later than mid-December, staff and AAP employees will receive confirmation from their supervisors and the Department of Human Resources regarding whether they will work in-person or telework until further notice. We will also continue to review our Redeploy Georgetown program and will be in touch with more information on our needs in the coming weeks.

Dependent Care Support

Last month we announced the expansion of the GUCares dependent care assistance grant program from $1,000 to a maximum of $3,000 per employee through the end of the fiscal year (June 30, 2021). These funds support full-time staff and faculty facing dependent care challenges due to COVID-related closings of school, child care and elder care services. You can learn more about this and other GUCares grants at benefits.georgetown.edu/gucares 

The Department of Human Resources has also appointed Liz Andrew as the new Dependent Care Resource (DCR) Coordinator. In her role, Liz will support staff and faculty through the many complexities of dependent care resource identification, serving as a point of contact within Georgetown to help employees identify our available resources and address any questions. She can be reached at dependentcare@georgetown.edu.

Virtual Mental Health Support

Georgetown University is committed to supporting faculty and staff during this unsettling time. Virtual therapy and coaching from One Medical will soon be available at no cost to eligible U.S.-based faculty and staff. The program gives employees fast, convenient, and free access to one-on-one mental health help through video appointments. More information will be shared via a follow-up email. The addition of One Medical is a complement during this challenging time to the mental health resources provided through University-sponsored health plans and the services offered through the Faculty and Staff Assistance Program (FSAP). 

Financial Impact

With Spring 2021 plans impacting the University’s finances, we ask for your cooperation in the following measures aimed at reducing spending:

  • Holiday Spending and Printing: University resources should not be used to purchase holiday gifts or to send holiday cards. Before printing and mailing any material (including annual reports), please consider an electronic substitute. 
  • Travel Moratorium: Due to the ongoing impact of the pandemic, we will continue until further notice the moratorium on all university-sponsored and supported international and domestic air and train travel, including travel funded by a grant, foundation, company or another university. There will be very limited exemptions that must be approved by the appropriate campus EVP or the COO. Without prior approval, any travel booked during this moratorium, regardless of when it is scheduled to take place, will not be eligible for reimbursement. While this measure is one way to reduce spending, this decision was ultimately made in the interest of the health and safety of our community.

Virtual Staff and AAP Community Forum

We will hold our next Virtual Staff and AAP Community Forum this Thursday, November 19, at 11 a.m. Details for the forum will be sent in a follow-up message later today. Joining us for Thursday’s forum will be Tony Kinslow, our new Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer, and Dave Green, our Chief Financial Officer.

You can find additional information on the COVID-19 Resource Center website and in the frequently asked questions, which are updated regularly. If you have additional questions, please call the University’s COVID-19 Helpline at 202-784-3510 (available 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. ET Monday to Friday) or email covid19-questions@georgetown.edu to be connected to the appropriate University representative to answer your question.

For many of us, it is hard to believe that when we left campus in mid-March it would be the last time we would see our office or interact in-person with our colleagues in 2020. The past year has been unlike any other, and we will continue to face challenges as we begin the year ahead. Yet, we never could have navigated this pandemic without the tireless efforts of our faculty, staff and AAP community. We are grateful to all of you for your extraordinary service during these challenging times.

Sincerely,

Robert M. Groves, Provost

Edward B. Healton, Executive Vice President of Health Sciences

William M. Treanor, Executive Vice President and Dean of the Law Center

Geoffrey S. Chatas, Senior Vice President and Chief Operating Officer