COVID-19 updates and resources 


Message from Dean Kathy Rideout to the SON Community (3/11/20):

By now you have probably seen the communication from University leadership announcing the changes put into effect for the remainder of the semester due to the spread of the COVID-19 virus. That message was meant for the broad university audience, knowing that each school has its own unique academic requirements and programs. As such, I’d like to address how these new guidelines will affect SON students.

  • First, it is worth repeating that these changes are going into effect as a precaution. To date, there have been no cases of coronavirus at the University of Rochester or in Monroe County. However, social distancing – limiting the gathering of large groups of individuals – is our best defense of limiting the possible spread of the virus.
  • All courses for the remainder of the semester will take place online beginning March 16. The SON is practiced and well-equipped to handle distance learning, and we will work closely with faculty, our IT department and student affairs to ensure that our students receive the same educational preparation and instruction regardless of the course’s format.
  • Students should plan to stay away from Helen Wood Hall unless schedule for lab or experiential work, which can be conducted in small groups of no more than 8 students. All lectures will be done virtually. Student are prohibited from congregating in student lounges, classrooms or other settings.
  • Students in clinical settings are expected to continue reporting to their location. There may be adjustments to the location of upcoming clinical placements, but unless you hear otherwise, these placements will continue as scheduled.
  • This continues to be a fluid situation, but we’re expecting these measures to remain in effect for at least the remainder of the semester. There will be frequent updates as the semester rolls on.
  • Know that we will continue to support and do everything in our power to advance your continued academic progression. Your road to graduation will not be adversely affected by these outside events. You may continue to request CAPS services, which will be made available to students virtually. We will examine student progress on an individual basis to ensure that students are able to meet all necessary graduation requirements.
  • In keeping with the University’s new social distancing guidelines, events of larger than 25 people will be postponed or be conducted virtually. That includes all student events.
  • A survey will be sent out soon, requesting all students report where they traveled over spring break. It is vital that we collect this information so that we can be aware how many students were in COVID-19 hotspots and may have been exposed to contagion.
  • I know you have many more questions. We will be working hard over the next several days to provide you with more information and as many answers as we can. Your faculty course coordinators will be in touch with you by Monday with some more details. An FAQ page ( with SON-specific content will also go up in the next few days.
  • In the meantime, if you have questions about your academic plan, please feel free to call the Dean’s office at 585-275-8902 or reach out to your course coordinator, advisor or program director.

I’ll miss seeing you all in the hallways of Helen Wood Hall, but please know that you should feel free to reach out to me via phone and email. Myself, as well as our faculty and staff, will continue to be a resource to you through every means available as we work together to get through this unprecedented event.


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