UNLV wants in-person courses to go remote for rest of semester

spun hall
(UNLV photo)
spun hall
(UNLV photo)

The University of Nevada, Las Vegas is asking instructors teaching in-person courses to move to online instruction for the remainder of the semester amid the state’s coronavirus surge, UNLV President Keith Whitfield announced Thursday in an email to faculty and staff.

Students will be asked to move out of residence halls during the Thanksgiving break. 

“Students who move out early this fall will receive a prorated refund of room and board,” reads the notification.

Whitefield said the changes were made to comply with Gov. Steve Sisolak’s request that the state adopt a stay-at-home approach for at least the next two weeks in light of the surging number of COVID-19 cases in Nevada. 

UNLV has reported 380 confirmed cases — 314 students and 66 staff and faculty members — 185 of which happened on campus, according to its online dashboard.

In October confirmed cases more than quadrupled from the month prior, jumping from 34 confirmed cases to 137 cases, 108 of which were on campus.

November is set to see a further increase in confirmed cases as 60 cases have already been confirmed as of Nov. 12.

In the joint letter announcing the change from Whitefield and UNLV Provost Christ Heavey, both touted efforts currently in place meant to prioritize health and safety. 

Fewer than 20 percent of all courses are being offered in person currently in an effort to prioritize health and safety on campus, along with a campus-wide mask mandate, according to the letter. Residence halls are also operating at less than half occupancy. 

“Your consistent compliance with and leadership related to these efforts has been inspirational and has helped us keep the prevalence of COVID-19 relatively low among our university community,” reads the letter.

However, with the coronavirus surging Whitefield and Heavey asked faculty and instructors who are still teaching in-person courses to move instruction to a remote module for the remainder of the semester “if feasible.” 

Faculty have been asked to limit in-person requirements like group work or activities outside of class.

The “reduced in-person mode” will continue to the end of semester and UNLV officials will “continue to communicate details based on public health conditions and the governor’s directives if changes become necessary.”

Business operations will be reduced for winter break, Dec. 19 through Jan. 10. Several buildings will also be closed during that time, including the Student Union, UNLV Libraries, computer labs, the dining commons, and the Student Recreation and Wellness Center.

Residence halls will remain open to students who need winter break housing.

The UNLV Bookstore,The UNLV Schools of Medicine and Dental Medicine, Counselling and Psychological Services (CAPS) will remain open but at reduced hours and days.

The UNLV Bookstore hours will be as follows:

  • 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Monday through Friday
  • Closed on Dec. 25 and Jan. 1.
  • Regular store operating hours resume Jan.11

The Student Health Center (SHC), Faculty and Staff Treatment (FAST) Center, Pharmacy, and Student Wellness Laboratory:

  • Dec. 21-23: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. for in-person services
  • Dec. 24: No in-person visits with limited services available by phone
  • Dec. 25 and Jan. 1: Closed
  • Dec. 28-31: limited services available by phone
  • Jan. 4-8: 10 a.m. to 3 p.m. for in-person service

Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS):

  • Dec. 21-23: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. for telehealth and mental health services
  • Dec. 24: No in-person visits with limited services available by phone
  • Dec. 25 and Jan. 1: Closed
  • Dec. 28-31: limited services available by phone
  • Jan. 4-8: 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Patients who need in-person or after-hours care can visit the Health Center After Hours Care page for more resources, which include urgent care facilities and emergency rooms near the main UNLV campus.

  • SHC: 702-895-3370
  • CAPS: 702-895-3627
  • FAST Center: 702-895-0630
  • Pharmacy: 702-895-0278
  • Laboratory: 702-895-0280

UNLV Medicine will operate as follows:

  • Fifteen clinics on normal hours, staffed by faculty physicians and graduate medical residents
  • Dec. 24 and 31: Close at noon
  • Dec. 25 and Jan. 1: Closed
  • UNLV Medicine will care for in-patients 24/7 at University Medical Center and Sunrise Hospital and Medical Center
Jeniffer Solis
Reporter | Jeniffer was born and raised in Las Vegas, Nevada where she attended the University of Nevada, Las Vegas before graduating in 2017 with a B.A in Journalism and Media Studies. While at UNLV she was a senior staff writer for the student newspaper, the UNLV Scarlet and Gray Free Press, and a news reporter for KUNV 91.5 FM, covering everything from the Route 91 shooting to UNLV housing. She has also contributed to the UNLV News Center and worked as a production engineer for several KUNV broadcasts before joining the Nevada Current. She’s an Aries.