A-State cancels class Monday; online classes for remainder of semester

A-State announces timeline on possible transition to all-online instruction

JONESBORO, Ark. (KAIT) - Arkansas State University has canceled classes Monday due to the EF-3 tornado that plowed through Jonesboro Saturday evening.

Arkansas State University announced Sunday evening that Monday classes had been canceled due to tornado damage in the city of Jonesboro. The school had already transitioned to online classes.

A-State said they would remain with online classes for the remainder of this semester.

On Monday, March 30, ASU-Newport announced its classes would also remain online for the duration of the spring semester, and said that faculty would contact students and direct them on how to proceed for the rest of the semester.

A-State officials said on social media that the online class delivery will go through the end of the spring 2020 semester.

Officials said in a media release that the A-State campus will remain open the rest of the spring semester including residence halls, cafeterias, the library, counseling, student health center and computer labs.

All off-campus practicum activities and internships will continue as scheduled, while officials are working to make sure that the university can hold the graduation ceremonies as scheduled in May.

In a statement, Chancellor Kelly Damphousse said the university faces a difficult situation.

“Friends, this is really uncharted territory for everyone in the world, and especially on college campuses. This will not be easy,” Damphousse said.

Damphousse also called on people to be patient and empathetic with each other and to be calm in their actions.

University spokesman Bill Smith said if students need to come to campus to get items and then go home, they can. However, if professors do not have their information ready, they have Monday to prepare.

Arkansas State University officials announced Thursday that a plan had been created for all-online instruction at the university.

According to a media release, the university would return from Spring Break in online classroom delivery starting March 30.

Damphousse said officials are working on the issues, which are tough.

“I’ve said this many times before and in many ways, this is a fluid situation, but if we continue to work together as a pack, we will make it to the other side of these epic challenges,” Damphousse said.

Arkansas State University officials released a timeline Wednesday for the possible transition to all-online instruction due to the coronavirus.

In a statement Wednesday, Damphousse said he met with the university’s Provost and deans as well as other officials to discuss the plan.

“At this time, we have not decided if we are going to make that transition, but the group recommended that the university proceed with an all-campus trial of online class delivery for next Tuesday, March 17 and Wednesday, March 18,” Damphousse said in the statement.

Damphousse said classes would meet as scheduled March 16 and that classes on March 17 and 18 are not cancelled.

“They will simply be offered online so that we can test our readiness in case we do have to transition to all-online,” Damphousse said.

Students will be receiving information from their instructors over the next several days about how a class will work, while the only classes set to meet next week will be labs.

“I definitely feel like I learn more face-to-face, but it’s concerning to me that it spread so fast," freshman student, Amy Dehas said.

Chancellor Kelly Damphousse said that A-State faculty, staff, and administration worked over the past few weeks on plans to respond to the health crisis.

Damphousse said rumors may be rampant but officials are working to help make the situation as smooth as possible, especially with events like graduation.

“I don’t know how things will turn out. I have a bad feeling, but I hope things will turn out well," graduating MBA student, Anish Ghimire said.

At this time, the university says they have no plans to cancel or postpone graduation.

“We will do everything we can to keep commencement going as planned. But I want also to be very clear - we are in unchartered territory here. Graduation is two months away and a lot can happen between now and then (and I pray that it changed for the better as quickly as possible. In the end, my every decision about A-State operations is to keep every as safe as possible,” Damphousse said.

Calendar changes since the last update issued include:

  • Student Athlete Career Fair, March 18, canceled
  • Women in STEM Trivia Night, March 19, canceled
  • Opera Production, March 19-20, canceled
  • Arkansas International Pageant, March 21-22, canceled
  • Grant Writing and Administration class, March 26, postponed
  • NEA Rabbit Breeders Association, March 27, canceled
  • Tuba and Euphonium Ensemble Concert, March 30, canceled
  • Arkansas Dept. of Transportation regional meeting, March 31, canceled
  • Trombone Choir concert, March 31, canceled
  • Mom's Day activities, April 4, canceled
  • Bill and Alice Nix Petting Zoo, April 4, canceled
  • Kays Foundation meet and greet, April 14, canceled
  • Earth Day activities, April 17, canceled
  • Play@State matinee, April 17, canceled
  • Theatre Guild reception, April 17, canceled
  • Theatre production of The Tempest, April 17-24, canceled
  • College of Engineering and Computer Science open house, April 18, canceled
  • Create@State, April 20-22, face-to-face sessions canceled

Previously announced canceled and postponed events, original date, and status are listed in chronological sequence:

  • Spring sports competitions, canceled
  • Wind Ensemble Concert, March 17, canceled
  • FFA Career Development Events, March 18, postponed
  • Retirement Reception for Carol Barnhill, March 18, postponed
  • Spring football game, March 19, canceled
  • Faculty recital by Dr. Bruce Faske, March 19, postponed
  • Transfer Preview Day, March 20, canceled
  • Lauren Daigle Concert, March 21, postponed to Aug. 13 (see ticket info on FNB Arena website)
  • KASU Bluegrass Monday, March 23, canceled
  • Women's Business Leadership Conference, April 2, Postponed
  • Arkansas College Media Association Conference, April 3, canceled
  • Spring Social Work Conference, April 3, canceled
  • ABI DNA Day Celebration, April 3, canceled
  • Concert by Cory Jackson and Marybeth Byrd, April 4, postponed
  • Mom's Day activities, April 4, canceled
  • College of Engineering and Computer Science honors banquet, April 6, canceled
  • College of Agriculture honors banquet, April 7, canceled
  • Concert Choir concert, April 7, postponed to April 21
  • Department of Media honors banquet, April 8, canceled
  • Delta Symposium: The Haunted South, April 8-11, canceled
  • Arkansas Roots Music Festival, April 11, canceled
  • College of Education and Behavioral Science honors banquet, April 13, canceled
  • Neil Griffin College of Business honors banquet, April 13, canceled
  • College of Liberal Arts and Communication, April 14, canceled
  • Department of Communications honors banquet, April 15, canceled
  • Earth Day, April 17, canceled
  • Create@State, April 20-22, canceled
  • Phi Kappa Phi honors banquet, April 20, canceled
  • Resilience, documentary film, April 20, postponed
  • Wind Ensemble Concert, April 22, canceled
  • College of Sciences and Mathematics honors banquet, April 23, canceled
  • Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure, April 25, postponed
  • College of Nursing and Health Professions honors banquet, April 27, canceled
  • Undergraduate Studies, honors banquet, April 30, canceled
  • This and other news releases also available at: AState.edu/News

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