This fall there’s considerably more anxiety for college students and their families, as universities all over the country work to maintain a safe living and learning environment on their campuses.
To help ease some of that stress, Jacksonville University leaders launched “Diving Deeper,” a new video series offering families a glimpse of life on campus and providing regular updates on efforts to keep students safe.
“Our students are excited to be back on campus, and they’re doing their part to make sure we can stay. It’s important we show our parents and families what life on campus is like right now to make sure they feel connected and informed about everything we’re doing,” said Diving Deeper host and Senior Vice President Scott Bacon, who oversees the University’s offices of Advancement, Marketing & Communications, and Strategic Events.
Jacksonville University President Tim Cost opened the series with an update on move-in and the first week of classes. He said he’s pleased to see students wearing their masks, keeping their distance and acting responsibly this fall.
“If you think about the culture of this university, a lot of it is built on individual self-respect and personal responsibility,” President Cost shared. “The idea is not just can everyone wear a mask.… It’s can we keep each other healthy?”
Dr. Kristie Gover, Dean of Students, offered a glimpse inside student life on campus in episode two and explained how the University is supporting any students in quarantine and isolation.
“Students in quarantine and isolation are checked on multiple times per week by our healthcare professionals and Student Affairs professionals. We’re delivering three meals a day to those students along with some snacks,” said Dr. Gover. “Overall, we’re just trying to make sure they stay mentally healthy and physically healthy.”
In the third installment, Dr. Chris Sapienza, Provost and Senior Vice President of Academic Affairs, shared an update on how the University is working to keep students safe in the classroom, and she showed families what an outdoor classroom looks like.
“We’re taking advantage of the 240 acres of beautiful space we have at Jacksonville University,” said Dr. Sapienza. “I really have to commend the faculty and the students. They really have adapted well.”
“Our goal is to give parents and families as much information as we can and to keep an open line of communication with them,” said Bacon, who invites families to submit questions on JU’s social media channels for future guests to address in the Diving Deeper video series.
Future guests of the series include Director of Residential Life Jenny Boyer, Director of the JU Student Health Center Dr. Elaine Borne, head of JU Dining Adam Poling, and Athletic Director Alex Ricker-Gilbert.
Once students arrived on campus in August, the University converted its “Ready To Return” Fall 2020 webpage to “Determined To Stay,” reflecting the new focus on the personal responsibility all members of campus share to ensure JU can continue offering as much in-person instruction as possible.