Wednesday, April 8, 6:44 AM

April 8, 2020

Good morning everyone, I hope the first two days of Spring Quarter have gone well. I really appreciate hearing from many of you that things are going well so far, do follow up either way. Here’s what I have for this morning.

All Undergraduate Summer Courses will be online courses. The Provost made this announcement in an email yesterday at 4:04. There have been no final decisions about graduate courses, my guess is that they will all move to online with the possible exception of graduate intersession courses, depending on what the future holds.

Departments and Programs can sign up to be involved in Admissions recruitment efforts. Kate Elias sent out an email about this at 11:23 yesterday, the survey focuses on getting information from departments and program directors. It would be great to have broad involvement across departments and programs in A&S.

CR/F options are continuing to become clearer, I will follow up with Department Chairs. The development and implementation of this policy has been far more complicated than anyone expected, resulting in many questions across the college and the university. I will follow up with chairs and program directors later today with another clarification after checking in with AcA President Frank Shih and the Provost’s Office on immediate issues, hopefully we’ll then be set to publish guidelines for students for the Winter Quarter. As the notes from AcA show, longer conversations about grading are likely.

We only have early enrollment data so far. Our student head counts are down from Spring Quarter last year but that was expected. Usually only a few of us keep track of day-to-day changes this early in each quarter, but I know everyone is more interested right now. The most important and “official” head count day is from the 10th day of class but we receive frequent counts between now and then. Compared to last spring, the university is down 2.7% so far, mostly due to a difference in the freshman class that has been true all year. The College of Arts & Sciences is down 7% in undergraduate registration and 13.9% in graduate enrollment compared to last spring, again not far off the changes we saw in the fall. A deep dive into the 10th day census at the university level is when we will know where we are relative to budget projections.

The city has approved the CSI building as an “essential” construction project and it is moving forward again. The goal remains to open in Fall 2021.

There are now 6 confirmed COVID-19 cases in the Seattle University community. More information is available on the University COVID-19 page.

Looking for something from an earlier update? All previous A&S Morning Update emails are now archived here. Keep in mind the older ones include outdated information. Early March was another era.


I didn’t see anything big since the school closure announcement, I know our family is still processing that one.

Mike Myint Update – Structural racism in the pandemic. Mike talks about how the COVID-19 pandemic is having a highly disproportionate impact on African Americans.

Health Equity and Covid-19 in the US

The Covid-19 (C19) pandemic will continue to reveal known and latent weaknesses in our public health, medical, economic, political and social structures. This article analyzes data from the available information on the disproportionate effect of C19 on Black Americans vs other groups.

The coronavirus is infecting and killing black Americans at an alarmingly high rate

The article speculates on whether social/economic inequities, higher chronic disease burden (with their own root cause), social/cultural differences, or genetic pre-disposition to more severe disease may be at play. Any of these can have interventions which may make a difference.

From the article
The crisis is “shining a bright light on how unacceptable” those disparities are, Fauci said at the briefing. “There is nothing we can do about it right now except to try and give” African Americans “the best possible care to avoid complications.”

Not to oversimplify, the known and latent weaknesses in the US are balanced by many known and latent strengths. Freedom of the press is balanced by the challenge of unproven social media claims; social distancing by personal freedoms; and voting by the risks of in-person voting during a pandemic. We do need to take a sobering look at health equity, which even in "normal" times has been sub-optimal for many of our fellow citizens.