June 1 Update: Q&A with Loren Reno, D.C. Semester, and Chick-fil-A Progress

June 1, 2020 |

Yellow and violet flowers near the Cedarville entrance sign Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. Through him we have also obtained access by faith into this grace in which we stand, and we rejoice in hope of the glory of God. Not only that, but we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, and hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us. (Romans 5:1-4)


This week’s COVID-19: Caring Well, Staying Well summer update includes:

  • a Q&A with Loren Reno about our return-to-campus planning approach,
  • when you can expect to hear about changes to the fall academic calendar,
  • cancellation of the Washington, D.C. Semester,
  • Recreation Center opening today,
  • protocols should a COVID-19 case be suspected or confirmed on campus, and
  • a new video showing the progress on the Chick-fil-A, new residence hall, and civil engineering building.

Caring Well, Staying Well: Cedarville’s Planning Approach – As Cedarville continues to prepare to welcome students, faculty, and staff back to campus for fall semester 2020, Loren Reno — who has been coordinating the University’s COVID-19 response since March — recently answered important questions about the philosophical approach that is guiding Cedarville’s preparation. Read the Q&A now.

Fall Semester – Next Monday (June 8), we expect to make an announcement on changes to the fall academic calendar. Our faculty leadership team is currently providing input to proposed changes, and we are also reviewing the calendar plans of other major universities to ensure we are following best practices. For Cedarville, our priorities for any update to the fall calendar include ensuring the same number of instructional days/minutes so the academic experience is equivalent, providing for the community events and experiences that our campus family so enjoys, reducing travel costs for students, and building in flexibility in light of COVID-19 uncertainties. Lord willing, we will share the updated fall calendar with you next week.

D.C. Semester Canceled for Fall – Due to challenges associated with COVID-19, the D.C. Semester study opportunity has, unfortunately, been canceled for fall 2020. Students who were planning to register for the D.C. Semester should work with their advisors to register for fall classes on campus and contact Residence Life to sign up for campus housing. If you have questions, please contact Dr. Mark Smith.

Fitness Center and Doden Field House Reopening – The Fitness Center and Doden Field House are reopening today. Crews have been hard at work installing plexiglass partitions and signage to protect guests and staff members. As a reminder, new protocols will be in place for the foreseeable future, including requiring sign-in, disabling drinking fountains, wearing masks, and limiting numbers at the facility. Learn more.

crews installing plexiglass in rec center

Response Plan in Place – Although there have been no known COVID-19 cases at Cedarville University, it is important for you to know that we have a plan in place for responding quickly, caring well for those affected, and limiting any spread. Adapted from our longstanding Pandemic/Flu Outbreak Response Plan, these five protocols reflect the best advisement of our own University health experts as well as regional and national public health authorities:

  • Triage – Engage with affected individual via telehealth; quarantine the individual and confirm the COVID-19 diagnosis; continue to monitor symptoms.
  • Test – Provide testing for close contacts of the affected individual.
  • Tell – Notify the Greene County Health Department and alert the campus community.
  • Tend – Ensure the affected individual is properly isolated and monitored; properly sanitize any potentially infected spaces.
  • Trace – Work with county health officials to properly contact trace.

This Response Plan website will also be used to track cases, should that become necessary in the future.

Getting Ready for Fall – Although campus is quiet right now, construction crews are busy putting the finishing touches on the new residence hall, civil engineering building, and the Chick-fil-A. All are on schedule to be ready for fall semester when we welcome new and returning students to campus.

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  • Buck Longmore says:

    Thank you for the update. The world has often used fear as a way of attempting to change the way we see and do things. But thank God we have an eternal perspective on things. It is all about Him and His gospel of love. (2 Timothy 1:7 For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of sound mind.) It is my hope and prayer that as we move forward, it is with discernment that we choose to operate and navigate through these troubled times. Not with fear, but with power and of love and of sound mind.

    • Sarah Gump says:

      Great perspective! Thanks for sharing. Please continue to pray for Cedarville as we navigate how to respond to this situation with godly wisdom.

  • Holly McMillan says:

    I appreciate all Cedarville is doing to ensure the kids can come back to campus this fall. Our daughter is one of thousands of students eagerly awaiting her return to her beloved university. I do wonder if the face masks are a requirement of the government of Ohio in order to open your field house and fitness center, or if it is simply a social preference of Cedarville. It seems counter intuitive to force people to wear a face mask while working out, that is a time they need more oxygen not less. The efficacy of face masks that aren’t medical grade is low enough that my son, a 2020 Cedarville nursing grad, was not allowed to wear them during his practicum at the hospitals. The CDC, WHO, and even Dr. Fauci have all made statements to the lack of ability face masks have at preventing Covid from spreading. It would seem to me that the masks aren’t a scientific benefit. Can you share why they will be required for the field house and fitness center?

  • Shauna says:

    Thanks for the update. However, nothing at all has been said about how the situation with Dr. White is being handled. I would like to know what is being done. It was said there is to be an investigation, but no more information. I am not seeking to stir up trouble at all, but he has a very prominent position as leader. It feels strange that nothing more has been said. Transparency is very important. I will continue to pray for godly guidance, truth and wisdom for all involved.

    • Sarah Gump says:

      Hello, Shauna. Thank you so much for writing, asking, and praying. As shared earlier, our Board has commissioned two investigations, and they are still in process. We will share an update with our University family and friends as soon as we have additional information. Thank you again for caring and praying!

  • Melissa says:

    How are the bigger issues being addressed?

  • Darwin Munoz says:

    Thank you for the information, our family pray for wisdom for all Cedarville staff.
    God bless you

  • Larry Schmidt says:

    I think you are spot on about the safety of the students regarding COVID-19. It’s the older staff and faculty that are more vulnerable. It’s a great time to teach the students to keep the old folks safe by following the health guidance.

  • Ashish Nedungadi says:

    Totally agree with Jillisa. 2 Tim 1:7 says “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.” Let’s use our sound mind, implement and exercise the necessary precautions, out of love for one another and our community and then live life in the power of Jesus Christ. If we’re saved, we have the same spirit in us that raised Jesus from the grave (borrowing from a song). Thank you Cedarville for all you do. Praying for the leadership during these difficult days.

    • Sarah Gump says:

      Thanks for the comment, Ashish! Please pray for Godly wisdom for the Faculty and Staff as we navigate these uncertain times.

  • Jillisa Cantrell says:

    I am praying that Cedarville has a right perspective on this whole Covid issue. The kids need to be on campus!! The virus, like many other ailments we deal with this in this fallen world, is not going away, and it is not as bad as thought in the beginning. The recovery rate of those who get it is over 97%, and it’s barely affecting the college age group and younger. We need to start living life and quit living in fear as followers of Christ. Please lead on this issue, Cedarville. Thanks!

    • Sarah Gump says:

      Thank you for the comment, Jillisa! We appreciate your feedback. We are seeking wisdom from the Lord and medical experts with how to best approach this situation. We look forward to being back on campus with the students in the fall!