May 26 Update: Caring Well, Staying Well; Campus Visits; and Fitness Center Opening

May 26, 2020 |

You keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on you, because he trusts in you. (Isaiah 26:3)

Today’s update includes an introduction to our new Caring Well, Staying Well initiative; the return to in-person campus visits; the Fitness Center’s reopen plans; new opportunities for student-athletes; and an alumna being recognized for her creative teaching methods during this time of online learning.

Caring Well, Staying Well – Throughout the summer, we’ll be sharing information and resources as part of our new COVID-19: Caring Well, Staying Well initiative. Watch now as John Davis, Associate Vice President of Human Resources and chair of our Return to Campus Committee, introduces the five primary protocols that will be in place to guide our safe return to campus in August.

From hand sanitizer stations around campus to new paper towel dispensers in every residence hall restroom and Plexiglas shields in strategic service areas, these are just a few of the preparations that are in progress on campus. We’ll keep you informed through the summer!

Resuming Campus Visits – If you know a prospective student who is interested in getting to know Cedarville, we have good news! Starting June 15, we will begin offering on-campus tours on Mondays and Fridays at 9 a.m. and 1 p.m. Each day’s time slots are limited to three families, and times can be selected by registering online. For those unable to make it to campus, we are still offering live virtual visits Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays through June 15. Starting June 15, virtual visits will be on Wednesdays only.

Recreation Center Reopening – The Rec Center will reopen June 1 with phased-in hours. Our goal is to provide a safe environment for our University family, which will require limitations on activities and special procedures to follow, such as requiring sign-in, disabling drinking fountains, wearing masks, and limiting numbers at the facility.

NCAA Updates for Student-Athletes – The NCAA has recently adopted legislation to permit voluntary workouts for returning student-athletes along with a limited on-campus recruiting period. In addition, a blanket waiver has been issued to permit committed prospective student-athletes and returning student-athletes to participate in voluntary team entertainment activities (excluding physical activities). While there will be parameters and precautionary measures in place, Cedarville University is planning to allow all three of these options beginning on June 15. For further information, prospective and current student-athletes should direct questions to team head coaches.

Alumna Gains National Attention for Her Creativity During Online Teaching – Cedarville graduate Heidi Bruder knew she needed a way to keep her fifth- through seventh-grade language arts students at Calvary Christian Academy in West Branch, Michigan, interested during online learning. Her solution? Teaching while dressed as characters from Yoda, Harry Potter, and more, keeping her students engaged and interested virtually. Read Heidi’s story online — complete with photos!

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  • Corey says:

    I’m sorry, but this is just intellectually dishonest (See (1) and (2)) and promotes cognitive dissidence.

    I mean this in the most loving way–though I am purposely stating this in a manner that is direct and “pulls no punches.” (I’m not ranting, nor angry. Actually, the video makes me sad.)

    I don’t think the Cedarville team making the rules are trying to promote these untenable positions (of living together separately,) as I believe they are trying to follow the government mandates. But let’s be honest with each other. One can’t social distance in their home. Cedarville is the student’s home. It’s really not possible to social distance at Cedarville and live together.

    What is much more honest is to protect the vulnerable by applying policy to the vulnerable. If need be: Separate rooms, separate spaces in classes, separate spot for eating at Chuck’s, separate area during chapel, the vulnerable wear face masks so they are also able to be kept safe. I realize this brings the very real possibility of discrimination, but isn’t this always the possibility when people are “different?” (Physical handicaps, mental handicaps, racial and monetary differences, etc.)

    Can I ask, are these new rules to appease government (as the rules mirror government guidelines) or does the Cedarville team actually think that students can live together separately?

    Our mega-church (in a different state) decided to move forward being intellectually honest. They decided it’s not possible to do church together separated by masks, distance and plexiglass. As much as I don’t like this, I agree with their position because it makes rational sense. As much as I’d hate to see students forced to remote learning, I think given the choice of the guidelines in the video or remote learning, I’d choose remote learning. (Though I don’t think these are the only two choices–assuming governments are allowing other options.)

    I hope that Cedarville will also be providing distance learning, so students can choose to save the room and board costs, but yet still graduate with a Cedarville degree.

    (1) Saying things that don’t make sense but pretending they do.
    (2) Being unfair while pretending to be fair.

    • Sarah Gump says:

      Hello, Corey! Thank you for the feedback! We appreciate hearing perspectives from the Cedarville family (faculty, staff, students, and parents). Your concerns and perspectives are very useful for us as we create videos and communications in the future. The video in this update was broad to apply to both faculty and staff (who operate at Cedarville as their workplace) and students (where Cedarville is their residence / home as well as their school). We agree that it’s going to be very difficult (impossible) to social distance in residence halls and even classrooms. But, for our faculty and staff, we can implement protocols similar to the video outlines to provide a level of protection. Our goal is to navigate these issues carefully, wisely, and sensibly. Yes, we are following the guidance of state and local health officials, while also appreciating that a residential campus community has unique challenges and opportunities. There will be more communication in the future which explains our rationale, as well as clarifies the differing expectations for students and faculty/staff. Thank you for taking the time to share with us! We appreciate your feedback and understand your concerns.

      • Corey says:

        Thanks for your reply Sarah! More specific clarification will be extremely important.

        Yes, we are definitely spending time in prayer for wisdom and courage to make choices that aren’t primarily “security theater” and make a lot of rule breakers due to the impracticality of the rules. Nonsensical rules make lots of rule breakers, when it is the intent and heart of the matter that will bring freedom to make wise choices that actually work.

        Impractical rules……(e.g. In our state, you could ride in the same car to a lake with someone, but you couldn’t legally get in the same boat! Or at Cedarville it could become, “I sleep, share a bathroom and eat next to my roommate, but I have to wear a mask and stay 6 feet away from him during class or when working out…..? Can I walk to class next to him but then enter the building 6 feet apart?”)

        …combined with the ever changing “what works”…..(e.g. as of June the AP is now reporting, “The World Health Organization, which funded [a] new analysis, has said healthy people need to wear a mask only if they are caring for a person with COVID-19.”)

        ….is fatiguing for adults who are trying to follow conflicting rules–let alone 20 year olds living together!

        I encourage my son to be respectful of all rules, and it becomes especially difficult when I also need to ask him to shut off his brain (“just do what your told regardless of whether it makes sense”) to be able to follow them. As we all know, we don’t want rule followers, we want heart change. We know there are consequences to laws (rules) and as such, unlike the general world, our God operates primarily off of principles.

        Lastly, we are also praying our governments allow us to intact polices that promote compassion, care, and concern for those around us, not cynicism and criticism.

        Thanks for listening!

  • Tim Dysert says:

    We live in Spain and were hoping to see specific dates decided upon for the length of the semester. Have you decided on having classes up to Thanksgiving? We really need to buy a ticket for our son ASAP.

    • Sarah Gump says:

      Hello, Tim! Thank you very much for this feedback! Your comment was shared with the Return to Campus Committee. We will announce the full plan and the dates on the COVID-19: Caring Well, Staying Well blog as soon as it is finalized.