Q&A with Dean of Students


File Photo/The Lion's Roar

Dr. Gabe Willis Dean of Students

How will the university accommodate students who don’t have internet connection?

“At the moment, we do recognize that every student won’t have a laptop or access to Wi-Fi. On campus, there will be labs open. I know Fayard will remain open, the library will remain open. There’s conversations about other spaces also being open as well. Regarding residents, I think housing has sent out information—just collecting certain information to see who does not have access to a laptop, to just determine what type of lab space will be needed to be open on campus.”

“In regards to students who do not live in campus and have Wi-Fi concerns. I believe we’re gonna ask those students to communicate that to their faculty members—any challenges they might have, and then they’ll kind of have to work that out between their instructor and the student at the moment.”

Will there be any sort of refunds?

“Unfortunately, I don’t have the answers to questions related to refunds. You know, certain fees such as intramurals—those are good questions  that we would have to consider. The thing about moving into an emergency type of plan is that you may not have every answer going into it. So, the thing that we have to remember is that we’re all anticipating the questions that are coming out.”

“You all are actually doing us a huge favor by posing these questions that we may have not considered fully because it’s new. It’s challenging to see the questions, but it’s also great to hear them because it allows us to work through the issues that we need to, so keep them coming. We’re going to work through them as quickly as we can with the information that’s available.”

What advice do you have for students and faculty?

“I would advise to keep an open mind. Realize that the university is making the most calculated decisions with the information that we have. Believe that we’re operating with their best interest in mind and that we are working to transition the courses as quickly as we can. But also, be open minded about it. I know there’s a lot of unknown, but try to remain as positive as we can. Continue to ask the questions but also be patient at the same time”

Additional statement:

“Just know that I promise we’re acting with your best interest to certain decisions that are made. We’re doing it with the information that we have available, and we’re trying to be as calculated as we can. We’re working on getting information out as quickly as we can to decrease that anxiety. We’re working very hard to do that.”