Wagner College, like every college in the country, is facing challenges like never before in the face of the coronavirus epidemic.
On Thursday, the college’s board of trustees pledged its complete support for the institution and its leadership, faculty and staff.
“The Covid-19 virus has brought unprecedented threats and disruptions to our lives,” said Dr. Warren Procci ’68 H’17, chairman of the trustees, in a statement. “Our faculty and staff are doing an outstanding job rising to this unprecedented challenge. We intend to emerge from this well positioned to maintain our excellent academic standards and to continue our rising stature in the ranks of liberal arts colleges.
“Dr. Joel Martin, our President, has responded as a true leader: calmly taking charge, taking strong and necessary actions, and consistently exemplifying a robust mixture of support, encouragement and safety for our students, faculty, employees and the campus” Dr. Procci said.
“Our Board of Trustees thanks Joel, his wife Jan Martin, and his entire senior staff for their admirable leadership in a very trying time. The Board pledges its full support to assure that Dr. Martin and our College will be provided with all of the necessary resources to enable Wagner to navigate this crisis.”
Wagner College President Joel W. Martin thanked the board for its confidence and its pledge of support.
“Dr. Procci’s statement, on behalf of the Board, demonstrates true solidarity in a time of crisis,” President Martin said. “It is reassuring to know that our Board is absolutely committed to working together and seeing this through for Wagner College.
“I share the Board’s pride in our faculty, staff, students and our entire community. We will get through this together.”
March 22, 2020
Dear Wagner College Class of 2020,
Your Commencement matters. A lot. To you first and foremost but please know it is extremely important to all of us at Wagner College.
This rite of passage, this celebration, this milestone in life is important. It requires recognition. It warrants celebration. It demands marking.
We truly understand. For that reason, Wagner College will make sure it happens.
In the coming weeks and months, we will work together creatively to tap the joyous genius and generosity that defines our culture so that we can make your Commencement the best we have ever seen on Grymes Hill.
Part of that means, sadly, postponing the event itself. We have no choice for reasons that are far beyond our control. Even if we understand this rationally, it does not mean that we should not be upset or disappointed. We are upset and disappointed. Jan and I, new to our community, are devastated, along with the faculty, coaches, staff, family and friends who have watched you flourish for several years while at Wagner. We wanted nothing more than to see you process and have your special moment for all to witness and celebrate. And yet, our disappointment is nothing compared to yours.
Class of 2020, you did not deserve this. It is so sad to see your cherished celebrations, competitions, and performances cancelled or postponed. The loss is irreparable and it is not fair. You have done all we could ask. You have done your part with grace and grit and fostered an amazing class spirit that inspires all of us privileged to know you.
In spite of this disruption, we know you are going to do great things. For that reason, in the coming days, weeks, and months, we are going to intensify our efforts to connect you with potential employers, with alumni who can provide advice and support, with professional development opportunities. The world needs our Wagner graduates more than ever.
Finally, despite the need to postpone Commencement this spring, rest assured that we will recover all we can, when we can. Together, we will create a Commencement commensurate with your greatness, one we will never forget, one that you and your friends and family and all of us at Wagner will treasure and remember forever.
It starts now. Please share your ideas through https://wagner.edu/commencement/ideas/.
Class of 2020, you are in our hearts and thoughts. Stay strong, stay well, and keep your chin up. You are going to march. You are going to graduate. You are going to have your moment in the sun. We promise.
Joel W. Martin, Ph.D.
Dear Students, Faculty, Staff, and Parents,
As you know, things are changing rapidly and in unprecedented ways throughout the nation due to the coronavirus pandemic. Here at the College we have planned proactively and taken many steps over several weeks to secure the well-being of our community and support efforts to stem the spread of the virus. Among other things, we promoted CDC-best practices for hygiene, developed and implemented strict protocols for serving food, accelerated our spring break, moved our classes online, moved our students out of our residence halls and practiced strong social distancing, and communicated to our community as soon as we learned that some of our members had tested positive.
Today, Governor Cuomo signed an executive order that goes into effect on Sunday, March 22nd that requires every business to reduce its workforce to critical personnel only. We now need to take another important step.
Therefore, we are moving to critical personnel only on campus and restricting access to the physical campus until further notice..
- All campus buildings will have restricted access by 5 p.m. on Sunday, March 22 at 5pm, and this will be in effect until further notice.
- All campus housing will be restricted by 5 p.m. on Sunday, March 22, and will remain restricted until further notice.
Access to campus has been restricted–You MUST have permission:
- All Faculty involved in the transition planning to remote instruction on March 23, will be able to access campus buildings through March 22 to access equipment we have secured for them or to retrieve materials and equipment they may need in order to work by filling out this Campus Access Request Form (beginning March 20, 2020). Please note if you have already submitted this form, you do not need to re-submit.
- All Staff needing to access essential items from their office should make a request by filling out this Campus Access Request Form (beginning March 20, 2020). Please note if you have already submitted this form, you do not need to re-submit.
- Only faculty and staff who are approved will have access to the campus. If you have already filled this out, please just be patient and we will get back to you shortly.
- All students remaining in campus housing should make travel plans to their permanent homes or make other housing arrangements. If you have not already made plans for move out their items by Sunday, March 22nd, please do so. If you cannot move out by this date, you will not be penalized, however you will not be able to access your space until further notice. Residential Students who have items remaining in the residence halls will hear from the Office of Residential Education shortly with specifics. For inquiries, you can email email@example.com.
- All commuter students should remain off campus, if you have any essentials that you need to access, you must do so by Sunday, March 22nd at 5pm. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org for permission.
Please note: locks will be changed and card access removed. Only those with permission will be allowed onto campus. Those who have permission must enter through the front gate. Public Safety will have a pre-approved list of faculty and staff and students will need to provide written proof to our Public Safety staff. This is precautionary so that we know who is on campus at any given time.
Thank you for your flexibility, patience, and support as we navigate this unprecedented and rapidly changing landscape. Please continue to check our website at Wagner College Covid-19 Updates for new information.
Joel W. Martin
Dear Students, Faculty, Staff, and Parents,
I am writing to share the news that, like many communities around the world and across our country, Wagner College has now been touched by the coronavirus. This afternoon we learned that two members of our Wagner College community have tested positive for the coronavirus. Our colleagues are safe at home recovering under medical guidance. Our thoughts and prayers are with them for a speedy recovery.
Since these are the first confirmed cases of COVID-19 on our campus, we wanted to personally inform you of these events. As additional cases are diagnosed, we will post as much information as we can on our COVID-19 website. We also will continue to communicate with you about significant developments as we work together through this challenging time.
The last time that these employees were on campus were March 9 and March 13, and we are heavily disinfecting all areas where these people were present.
This afternoon, the Governor announced that there are 3,615 confirmed cases in the NYC area. While we have been anticipating this development as a community, given the rapidly rising numbers of confirmed cases in the U.S. as testing becomes more available, it is a sobering reminder of the collective effort we must all make to try to stem the spread of this virus locally and nationally. The efforts we have been taking need to continue and intensify. Therefore, new restrictions will be effective tomorrow, March 20th:
- Employees must get written permission from Human Resources to report to campus by completing the campus access request form.
- Students must have written permission from Residential Education [email@example.com] to report to campus.
- Any students scheduled to pick up items from campus should contact firstname.lastname@example.org if they want to reschedule.
- Anyone requiring access to campus must enter through the front gate.
If you have experienced the following, you should contact your health care provider concerning possible exposure to COVID-19:
- Fever of more than 100.5 degrees
- New or worsening cough
- New or worsening shortness of breath
- Close contact (6 feet or less) for a duration of 15 minutes or more with someone diagnosed with COVID-19
- Recent travel to a country at a Level 3 CDC designation
- Any member of the campus community who is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 should contact a medical provider by phone.
- While you are experiencing symptoms, we ask that:
- Employees inform their supervisor and plan to self-isolate at home for 14 days and not report to work.
Any students that are still on campus and experiencing symptoms should call the Center for Health and Wellness (718) 390-3158.
- In the meantime, all students, faculty and staff are reminded to:
- Wash their hands with soap and water regularly
- Avoid touching their eyes, nose or mouth
- Regularly clean and disinfect surfaces
- Practice social distancing by limiting exposure to crowds, avoiding handshaking and personal contact with others
Please know we appreciate your partnership as members of our campus in doing all we can to slow the spread of the coronavirus and contribute to the health and well-being of our community. Now more than ever, we need to treat one another with care, understanding, and respect.
Take care, be healthy, and stay strong and connected. We will get through this together.
Joel W. Martin
Dear Wagner Community,
From the moment of my appointment in July 2019, I have been looking forward to my formal inauguration as Wagner’s nineteenth president, viewing this event as an opportunity to bring attention to Wagner itself and its bright promise for future contributions to the world. With great creativity, members of our inaugural planning committee have designed a series of events that would celebrate our beloved College and help it pivot toward the future. Those plans have advanced beautifully. But now they have been interrupted by circumstances beyond our control. I am writing today to communicate that I have determined to defer the inauguration events until next fall. Two main reasons drive this decision.
The first reason is simple. At this time, we need our staff and faculty focused on the time-sensitive and quickly evolving work of planning for and dealing with the impacts of the Covid-19 spread in the U.S. This is an all hands-on deck moment. Given current demands, not to mention anxieties and uncertainties circulating nationally, we need to defer these events until we are in a less stressful time.
Second, the timing of the inauguration is completely flexible. It’s common for presidents of colleges and universities to be inaugurated within a few months of their appointment or even a year or more later.
For eight months now, Jan and I have been getting to know the culture and people here and we have come to love Wagner College. I have also spent considerable time and effort initiating strategic work and have started developing a compelling vision for our future in collaboration with our board, alumni, faculty, staff, and students. That work will be even more ripe and ready this fall. When the inauguration occurs, we will evoke our proud heritage and celebrate our warm and caring community in New York while also pivoting Wagner College toward an ambitious and even more impactful future. I look forward to that day!
In the meanwhile, rest assured, your president, faculty, board, and staff will keep doing all we can to keep Wagner strong, safe, and ready for great things ahead.
With respect and appreciation,
Joel W. Martin, Ph.D.
The spread of a new coronavirus around the world has many communities and colleges — including ours — on alert. The college is evaluating the situation as it develops, preparing for the possibility of cases on Grymes Hill, and doing everything it can to keep the campus community safe and healthy. To do so, each day we are either consulting websites or speaking directly with representatives of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention, state and city departments of health, and both hospitals on Staten Island.
All coursework for the rest of the Spring 2020 semester is being delivered online. Students, please consult with your professors for guidance on how to proceed.
To ensure social distancing, all but essential staff have been instructed to work from home. Access to the campus is tightly restricted. See the Campus Access Update, above, for more information.
Our residence halls are closed. The college will prorate an adjustment for students’ room and board charges for this semester. We will need some time to calculate this adjustment, however, because each student’s situation (i.e. loans, financial aid, grants, etc.) is unique.