After a successful first webinar on Tuesday, SVSU next week will deliver the second of two video discussions aimed at helping students and their families learn about the upcoming fall semester. The next webinar will begin at 5 p.m., Tuesday, Aug. 4, on SVSU’s Facebook page. The video will remain archived on the NEST Plan page for viewers unable to watch immediately.
The webinar will focus on modifications to student housing facilities and plans for moving students into their residential units; plans for some of SVSU’s traditional events, including those hosted by RSOs; the status of intercollegiate and club sports; modifications to spaces dedicated to Dining Services and the bookstore; and an update on-campus employment.
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The first webinar featured updates on campus safety and modifications to campus buildings; as well as updates regarding academics, course delivery and student support services.
Employees coming to campus... remember to check in daily at svsu.edu/dailyscreening.
SVSU Housing officials have modified capacity within residential units to help students better practice social distancing:
First Year Suites (A-G House)
Living Centers (MJB, LCS, LCSW)
Pine Grove & University Village
Housing officials soon will provide residential students details regarding check-in plans. This year, the check-in period will occur over an entire week to help facilitate social distancing. Freshmen will check-in Monday, Aug. 24 through Wednesday, Aug. 26. Returning students assigned to University Village and Pine Grove will move in Thursday through Saturday, Aug. 27-29. Residents will be allowed to invite up to two guests to help them move into their units. All students and guests must complete a mandatory daily screening, maintain social distancing, and wear face coverings. Additionally, all furniture in bedrooms converted from shared to single must remain as the university cannot store the excess furniture.
Over the next few days, 100 enthusiastic students will begin orientation training in their roles as NEST Ambassadors. These individuals will assist with keeping the community healthy and safe, serving in one of three specialty areas: Student Experience, Information Technology, and Health and Wellness.
For the next few weeks, NEST Bulletin will spotlight members of this outstanding group, introducing them to the campus community they soon will engage as Ambassadors.
Today, that spotlight shines upon Lauren Steen, a fourth-year occupational therapy major from Peck. An enthusiast and participant in SVSU intramural volleyball, Steen joins the Health and Wellness division of the Ambassador program. Her orientation session is planned for later this week, but she was able to share some details about her role and motivations in the following Q&A session.
Q. As an Ambassador, you will be focusing on strengthening the mental health of your fellow students. Before accepting this job, you served as a behavior technician, working with elementary school-age children with autism. Also, you are an occupational therapy major. So, you seem to possess a passion for helping others. Where does that passion come from?
A. I’m in the occupational therapy program because I want to work with military veterans and wounded soldiers. My dad was in the Army and I have a lot of family in the military.
When I was a senior in high school, I helped my mom when she had thyroid cancer. I helped her go through recovery and survive that. It was a scary experience, but I learned I want to continue helping others.
Q. What about being an Ambassador are you looking forward to?
A. I’m looking forward to helping others; especially helping freshmen so they feel adjusted and comfortable during uncertain times.
Q. What are your thoughts on the upcoming fall semester?
A. I’m excited to get the year started and get back on campus. I want to see the changes that are happening there, and I look forward to seeing students come back. I know people will support each other and come together.
SVSU officials announced the campus would delay the reopening of the Fitness Center, which was originally planned for this week.
The staff there are working hard to update protocols that encourage safety among visitors to the facilities. Those changes will include policy relating to health screening, personal protection equipment, and social distancing requirements.
When plans are finalized, the staff there expect to open the Fitness Center and pool in stages. The first stage will involve welcoming back current students, faculty and staff before external members. Because of this, those external members will be offered a prorated balance of their membership fee.
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This week, the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) announced plans to play a conference-only schedule for the fall sports season. The GLIAC Council of Presidents will evaluate the feasibility of league competition on a sport-by-sport basis.
Here is a statement this week from GLIAC Commissioner Kris Dunbar:
“We recognize that student-athletes are anxious to return to campus and their teams. Throughout the summer, school administrators have put guidelines in place to ensure that student-athletes are properly tested, monitored daily and training safely. I admire the work they have done to put the health and safety of the student-athletes, coaches and support personnel above all. At the same time, we're working toward returning to competition safely."
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