April 29, 2020 – News release about plans to reopen campus in Fall 2020
ABILENE CHRISTIAN UNIVERSITY PLANS TO REOPEN FOR CLASSES THIS FALL
Like most universities around the country, ACU moved to online-only instruction in March and has yet to resume normal campus operations because of the COVID-19 pandemic. It recently announced that summer classes would be offered online. All summer camps have been cancelled.
“We’re looking forward to seeing our students on campus again this fall,” said ACU president Dr. Phil Schubert. “There’s a lot of work to be done before then, but we’re working aggressively to put the necessary protocols and safety measures in place to make that possible.”
ACU announced this week the formation of three working committees composed of faculty, staff and students that will review all possible scenarios for fall classes, but Schubert stressed they are most focused on bringing their students back to campus and reopening their residence halls.
“Our students want very much to get back to campus, and we want them here,” said Schubert. “We are being cautiously optimistic, and we will certainly follow state and federal guidelines to protect our campus community. What those precautions and protections might look like is the focus of one of our committee’s work.”
In the meantime, ACU personnel are working remotely and continuing to assess the pandemic’s impact. The university has set up two different funds to assist students with specific needs resulting from the pandemic, in addition to the CARES Act funding, and is maintaining student support services, such as counseling and tutoring, virtually. No decision has been made regarding when university personnel will return to campus this summer.
“I am so proud of how our students, faculty and staff have responded in this new environment,” said Schubert, “but we’re all ready to be reunited, and we look forward to that day.”
ACU, which is scheduled to begin fall classes Aug. 24, also announced it recently went “test optional” for its 2021 Application for Admission, due to the disruption in ACT and SAT entrance exam cycles.
“This is just one of the measures we’ve put in place to assist students during these challenging times,” said Schubert. “We’re also working with families individually to assess the needs of their college-bound students. We know people are anxious, and some of them are hurting. We want to be there for them every step of the way.”
In addition to its residential population of 3,800 students in Abilene, ACU enrolls approximately 1,400 students in online programs through its ACU Dallas campus.