Friday Futurecast — November 6

Health and safety update for university community members

Welcome to this week’s Friday Futurecast.

These updates are archived on the UMaine Fall ’20–Spring ’21 website. The University of Maine at Machias also has a Fall ’20–Spring ’21 website.

Message from President Joan Ferrini-Mundy:

Dear members of the UMaine and UMM communities,

I find that each week I need to open with my thanks to all for doing what you can to keep our campuses open and safe so that education can continue for our students. This week, we are seeing increased prevalence of COVID-19 statewide, with Maine CDC leaders now indicating that we have community spread, with the appearance of cases in which it is not clear where they contracted the virus. This means that we must be all the more vigilant and careful, with commitment to wearing our face coverings, keeping our distance, and not gathering in groups.  Governor Mills has issued a new executive order and soon there will be additional UMS guidance about how this may change our current practice. We also are transparent in reporting what is happening on our campus, and you can find more information at Together for Maine.

Today, I want to give a special recognition to the phenomenal staff in Student Life. Earlier this week, I had the chance to visit this group with Chancellor Malloy and hear directly about their work. The professionals in the Center for Student Involvement, Veterans Education and Transition Services, Residence Life, the Office of Diversity and Inclusion, Career Center, COVID Care Management and more are providing expert advice, services, help and support with compassion and creativity. Visit the Division of Student Life website to learn more.

Stay safe and take care of yourselves, one another, and our UMaine and UMM communities.  Enjoy the beautiful fall weather.

Sincerely,

Joan Ferrini-Mundy

Partnering to address health 

  • UMaine’s next round of phase three COVID-19 testing on campus this semester is Nov. 17–19. Notifications will be sent by email to those selected for randomized testing. 

  • Northern Light Cutler Health Center is offering the third UMaine employee flu clinic of the 2020 season from 9–11:30 a.m. Nov. 12. The clinic will be held in Alfond Arena. To schedule your visit, follow this link: umaine.edu/flushot. Students should call 207.581.4000 to schedule a flu shot.

  • Early next week, UMaine and UMM students will receive information by email about on-campus COVID-19 testing prior to leaving for the semester.

Transparent and continuing communication 

  • Join President Ferrini-Mundy and other leaders for an informal virtual town hall for UMaine and UMM students to discuss the last weeks of the semester, including the transition to remote learning, winter break and the spring 2021 semester. The event will be held from 2:30–4 p.m. Nov. 17. Send questions for the town hall to umaine.alerts@maine.edu. We will answer as many questions as possible during the live broadcast.

  • The university will be conducting one final fall 2020 student flash survey next week to ask about post-Thanksgiving IT needs. We encourage students to complete the survey so we can provide support as fully as possible during remote learning. 

In-person, on-campus experiences and other learning modes

  • UMaine will recognize veterans with a week of in-person and virtual events to coincide with Veterans Day, Nov. 11. The activities are coordinated by the UMaine Office of Veterans Education and Transition Services (VETS) and UMaine Veterans Association. UMaine Veterans Week activities kick off with a flag raising ceremony at noon Nov. 9 in front of Fogler Library. Army and Navy ROTC will raise the U.S. and POW/MIA flags in honor of the veteran community. Classes are canceled Nov. 11. Information about other UMaine Veterans Week activities is online.

Flexibility, responsiveness, empathy, and science

  • The Fall 2020 websites for UMaine and UMM have been updated to Fall ’20–Spring ’21 sites. Here you will continue to find the latest university and University of Maine System COVID-19 health and safety guidance, and updates related to the final weeks of the fall semester, winter break, Winter Session and spring semester. 

  • When UMaine transitions from classes in-person to remote, so will student-focused events. The UMaine Center for Student Involvement is seeking input about events students want most — and when. Fill out the survey online.

Continuing our missions for Maine

  • The University of Maine System has provided clarity regarding announcements and information about athletic competitions involving any of the System universities: The final determination and any announcement on a UMS university competing in collegiate athletics will come from and include the president of that university. There have been no determinations reached by the presidents of Maine’s public universities regarding winter or spring competition, nor are they able to commit to a timetable for making these determinations at this time.