Academic

3/23/20 | 8:15pm | Physical Access to Briscoe Library Closing- Digital Access Available 24/7

The Briscoe Library (building) will close effective March 24 until further notice. To access library services 24/7, visit https://library.uthscsa.edu/. For the planned blood drive sponsored by UME scheduled for Tuesday, March 24 and Wednesday, March 25, UTPD will assist in routing students interested in donating blood to the 2nd floor of the library during the drive.

3/20/20 | 3:36pm | School of Nursing Suspending Clinical Rotation Until Further Notice

In the interest of ensuring student and faculty safety, concern about PPE shortages, and anticipation of an increased number of community acquired COVID-19 cases, we are suspending clinical experiences, for undergraduate and graduate students effective March 21, 2020 until further notice.

We are working carefully to identify virtual resources and virtual simulations to assist in your mastery of clinical content.  We are exploring opportunities to engage in telehealth activities, once systems have been established.  We are in unprecedented times, and are guided by our concern for our patients, students, faculty, and the community.

We understand that for graduate students, this situation might mean not completing the number of clinical hours necessary for the program in a timely manner for August 2020 graduation. We will work with each student to develop a plan to address their unique needs for progression.  For undergraduate students, we will prioritize the current eighth semester traditional cohort class if telehealth opportunities become available.

We are committed to preparing our students for graduation and successful completion of the program.  When the situation improves, we will adjust accordingly.  We thank you for your continued patience and understanding.

I will be coordinating a town hall meeting for all students through the Student Success Center next week so you can share your questions and concerns. Please check your LiveMail and Canvas messages for additional details on that opportunity in the future.

Eileen T. Breslin, Ph.D., RN, FAAN
Dean, School of Nursing
Patty L. Hawken Nursing Endowed Professor

3/20/20 | 3:10 pm | School of Health Professions Suspending Student Clinical Rotation through March 31

The School of Health Professions is suspending students’ clinical rotations effective Monday, March 23 through the end of March.  The Dean will reevaluate next week, and consider if it is necessary to suspend clinical rotations through April. Students should stay in close contact with their department chairs and program directors regarding the status of clinical experiences.  SAFD training rotations will continue as scheduled.

3/20/20 | 2 pm | Commencement Ceremonies Cancelled

Dear UT Health San Antonio community:

It is with the health and welfare of our entire university community in mind that we must cancel our in-person commencement ceremonies scheduled for May.

I know that this is deeply disappointing for all of us, especially for our students, their families and friends who have dreamed about this momentous milestone. However, we must be prudent in light of the life-threatening global pandemic that we currently face.

We will honor this occasion in as many ways as we can and will award degrees to those students who have satisfactorily completed their degree requirements by May 2020.

We will print commencement programs for each school so that our students and their families will have that important memento. They will be mailed, along with diplomas, to all graduates.

And we remain committed to exploring other creative ways to further honor this occasion, including the possibility of a future in-person ceremony.

COVID-19 has forced people all over the world to make drastic changes to their work and life routines, and UT Health San Antonio is likewise affected. We’re in uncharted waters, but as a university, as a nation and a world, we will navigate those waters and rise above the challenge.

Even though we cannot celebrate face-to-face at this time, we are so proud of our graduates and we honor our faculty and staff who have guided them along their academic journey.

Be well. Stay safe.

William L. Henrich, M.D., MACP
President and Professor of Medicine

3/17/20 | Message from Vice President of Academic, Faculty & Student Affairs

I want to extend this message of appreciation for all the resiliency you are demonstrating as our community responds to the changing environments in which we operate. Each of you has experienced some aspect of disruption because of the COVID-19 pandemic, whether it is in your academic course work, your clinical learning environments, or in your home/personal life.

What is amazing is the support that you are giving to each other to honor why you have chosen the special career path of being health care providers and biomedical scientists. We have a distinctive mission to make lives better for the patients and communities we serve.

Please be reassured that your Deans, your faculty, and your academic and student support staff are focused on maintaining the academic continuity of your programs. We are using different strategies to be flexible in how our academic programs and support services are delivered. In some cases, we will be adjusting the sequence of curricular content, in order to respond to the dynamic changes about social distancing and group size. In other cases, we are delivering service continuity virtually. We will maintain continuity, albeit differentially, to the fullest extent possible.

Your Schools are your best resource for communication about your academic program, and I urge you to incorporate in your daily practice all the modalities and platforms your School leaders have instructed you to use to stay informed. Please stay in touch with your Deans and your Academic Affairs and Student Affairs Deans.

  • LSOM/Undergraduate Medical Education: Dean Hromas, Dr. Eddins-Folensbee, Dr. Conway, Dr. Hanson, and Dr. Reeves
  • SOD: Dean Loomer, Dr. Segura and Dr. Seitz
  • SHP: Dean Shelledy and Dr. Henzi
  • SON: Dean Breslin, Dr. Gill, Dr. O’Neal and Dr. Byrd
  • GSBS: Dean Weiss, Dr. Raabe and Dr. Blake

With yesterday’s White House guidance on limiting group size to less than 10 and strong recommendations on social distancing, several of our services will be curtailed, such as access to Gold’s Gym. The Libraries will be accessible virtually, and physical presence will be allowed only for our communities with badge access (similar to how you use the Briscoe Library now, with its 24/7 access). We will post updates on our support services websites as this will be the best means for us to share information with you.

In closing, let me reiterate how grateful I am for your flexibility and resiliency. The grace and good humor you extend to those around you are vital to how we will manage through this period of uncertainty with our professionalism intact.

With heartfelt appreciation for what you bring to UT Health San Antonio,

Jacqueline Lee Mok, Ph.D.,
Vice President for Academic, Faculty & Student Affairs

Timely Updates