Message from Dr. Pagan (March 28, 2020)
Greetings New River CTC Student,
We hope you are doing well and staying healthy amidst the COVID-19 pandemic. As you know, we resume classes Monday, March 30th, using online platforms, like Zoom and Blackboard Learn. Please know that the College remains open, even though the physical campuses are closed. I want to share with you what we, as your College, are doing to ensure the remainder of the spring semester is a successful one for you, even as it will be a most memorable one. We, just as you are, are continuing to navigate the coronavirus pandemic. No one has experienced going through something like this, and each day we learn more, and adjust and adapt as needed to minimize any threat this virus may have at New River CTC’s campuses. Our goal is to ensure that you are able to complete your courses, and we are here to assist you with that effort.
As I mentioned earlier, the College has become a virtual college. This means that along with distance classes, we are conducting college business and services remotely, and all of the College’s departments are still open on their regular schedule. The academic and student affairs teams are here to help and support you. Whether you need tutoring, registration, advising, financial aid, the business office, educational counseling, or have any other question, please know that we can be reached.
How can you reach us?
Our staff in Academic and Student Affairs can be reached by email, Zoom or telephone. If you need to make an appointment, please know that we can meet with you by Zoom or by telephone. I encourage you to reach out to your faculty advisor or campus Student Success Center to schedule an advising appointment, as we are now open for registration for current students. Your Student Success Center can connect you with live tutoring by Zoom for math, physics, or chemistry, as well as online resources for other subjects. You can still schedule appointments with the Financial Aid Office and the Student Success center, as well as for tutoring.
What if I am having technology issues such as logging on to MyNewRiver portal?
Our fantastic team in IT is on top of making sure that technology provided through the College is working across our entire service region where we have campus locations. If you experience problems, please contact our IT department at (firstname.lastname@example.org) or submit a help-desk ticket. The IT team will do their best to provide assistance within 24-hours of being contacted.
What about mental health counseling?
We hope to continue to offer counseling services once we have determined how we can do so without compromising client privacy. When we have that resolved, which we hope will be soon, we will be able to offer that service through the remainder of the semester.
What about my courses that have hands-on or experiential learning labs that we cannot complete because of the restrictions in place?
Our Deans and faculty are working on how to resolve this issue with minimal impact to you the student. For technical and career programs a schedule is being worked out that we can implement once you are allowed to return to campus to complete the hands-on portion of the courses you may be enrolled in. More to come on that. It is our goal to ensure you complete your courses successfully despite this pandemic.
How can I register for spring and fall classes while the College is physically closed?
As I mentioned earlier, we are open. Our Student Success Center and Enrollment Services teams are ready and willing to help you with advising and registration. If you are enrolled in a health or technical program, please contact your advisor, preferably by email, to set up an appointment to meet with them so that you can register for classes. Instructions for online registration can be found on the College’s website (https://www.newriver.edu/).
What resources are available for us through the remainder of the semester?
All online and virtual resources are available, in most cases 24/7. Please avail yourselves to these resources. Also, work with your faculty to ensure your success. Faculty are working remotely and will be delivering their courses using distance delivery platforms. This week they have been preparing to deliver normally in-seat and hybrid courses online, through Zoom, Blackboard Learn, or the Big Blue Button. Please know that your faculty have your best interest in mind and will work with you if you experience issues with class assignments, using Blackboard, or other education related concerns you may have. Our Student Success Centers and IT staff are also here to help.
Our Wi-Fi service extends outside most of our campus buildings, so you may be able to pick up service in the various parking lots. You would need to park as close as possible to the buildings, as the Wi-Fi service has limited range.
Lastly, what can you do as a New River CTC student?
I ask that you remain calm and patient, but most importantly, please stay connected. Pull up the College website often, at least once per day, to stay current on what is going on with the COVID-19 virus and what we are doing as a College to keep you safe and not disrupt your education. Check your emails, and by this I am referring to your College email account. Vital information is being shared across email as well as through social media outlets. Stay in contact with your faculty and work with them. I cannot overemphasize that as you and I go through this pandemic we must remain flexible.
Thank you for being a New River CTC student. We appreciate you and want the remainder of your spring semester to be a success. If you need something, please let us know. Stay with us – we will get through this!
Richard Pagan, Ed. D.
Vice President, Academic and Student Affairs
Message 2 from Dr. Copenhaver (March 23, 2020)
At his 11:00 press conference, Governor Justice issued a “stay at home order” for the state of West Virginia effective tomorrow, March 24, 2020 at 8:00 p.m. The actual Executive Order will be posted on the Governor’s website, and as soon as a copy becomes available, I will send it out. Judging by what other states have done, higher education institutions are included as “essential services” when they are delivering course work online.
In order to keep those vital employees safe who are on campus, all buildings will be locked and working hours will be 8:00-4:00. A schedule outlining who is working on campus at each location will be given to the facilities personnel. If you need to stop by any location to pick up or drop off an item, you must notify your supervisor for approval and a time will be arranged to meet you. If you do have building keys, I ask that you abide by these rules and do not come to campus after hours.
I am painfully aware that this closure will be a severe hardship on our students because we are not allowing them access to campus resources, but this is where we find ourselves at the moment and we all have to pull together to get through this storm.
Message 1 from Dr. Copenhaver (March 23, 2020)
Effective tomorrow, March 24, 2020, all locations of New River Community and Technical College will be closed to the public. The College will continue all operations with staff teleworking and faculty using Zoom and/or Blackboard for instruction. Each campus will have between three and four (3 and 4) people on site for security purposes and for minor work related tasks that cannot be accomplished via telework.
This closure will remain in effect until at least April 10, 2020. The situation will continue to be monitored, and the duration of the closure of the facilities may be shortened or lengthened as appropriate.
The decision to close the facilities was not made lightly. I originally wanted to preserve access to academic and computer labs for our students; however, the need to keep students and employees safe during this time is more important.
Even though the facilities are closing and mandatory teleworking is in place, all employees will continue to be paid. Your supervisor will work with you to find a suitable project that can be completed from home such as work on a special project, professional development, file organization, etc. if needed. It is my expectation that all major College functions will continue in a timely manner. As each Vice President finalizes plans for the major units of the College, specific operating details will be shared so that you will be able to answer questions that our students will have about College functions.
It will be critical that when students return next week that we are able to handle their questions and keep them focused on completing the remainder of the semester. I have no doubt that we will work together to accomplish this.
Bonny Ball Copenhaver, Ed. D.
New River Community and Technical College