Changes to campus operations during RNC

Guidelines released for on-campus operations July 18-21

Last week’s tragedies have horrified us all and raised profound questions for our country. Amid our shock and grief, we also recognize that our city soon will host the Republican National Convention (RNC), an event that is expected to draw dozens of protests—and could see a significant degree of conflict.

Just as recent events prompted the city of Cleveland to reassess its security plans, so too has the university. After extensive consultation among our leadership team and discussions in last week’s open forums, we have decided that the university will reduce its on-campus operations significantly from Monday, July 18, through the close of the convention Thursday, July 21. We expect to return to regular operations Friday, July 22, but events may require us to extend our scaled-back approach that day as well. If so, the university will provide an advisory with as much notice as possible.

In simplest terms, this decision means that every school and unit has been asked to minimize the number of people on campus, as well as the number of its campus buildings that are open. Below are some details of plans to implement this direction. We will provide additional information as plans become more final; you also will receive more individualized guidance within your specific area(s).

Classes

With some exceptions to be delineated within individual schools, faculty have been asked to identify ways to continue classes off campus July 18-21. They may choose to meet in another location, move instruction online, offer assignments that may be completed off campus, schedule additional classes outside of that week, etc. The University Technology Office (previously known as Information Technology Services) will provide additional support to faculty and students during this period.

Educational Camps

The university hosts a handful of educational camps for middle and high school students each summer. Those camps will not operate on campus during the RNC.

Faculty

All faculty are asked to conduct their work off campus as much as possible. Those whose duties and/or deadlines require coming to campus are asked to minimize whatever time they are on the main campus.

Staff

Deans and unit leaders have been asked to work with their teams to determine how to maintain essential services with the fewest number of staff physically on the campus. In some instances, this goal will involve having employees work off-site; in others, it will require work to be delayed. Under the guidance of the dean or unit leader, supervisors will notify employees this week regarding whether they will be asked to work on- or off-site. Those staff concerned about being on campus during that week will not have to do so.

The Office of Human Resources will be sending a separate communication detailing the protocols involved in implementing this direction, including those for compensation, vacation and other considerations. The guidance also can be viewed by downloading this PDF (single-sign on required).

Students Living in Summer Housing

Students will be asked to consider staying off campus during the week or to live in areas distant from the buildings where police officers and other guests here for the RNC are staying. The Office of Housing will be sending a separate email to these students with additional details about potential arrangements.

Others Living in Summer Housing

These individuals also will be asked to consider staying off campus during the week. They will have access to alternative housing that is available after the university accommodates requests from Case Western Reserve students. The Office of Housing will be sending a separate email to these individuals with additional details regarding options.

Counseling and Other Support

University Counseling Services will continue to offer walk-in services for students who want to talk with someone about their concerns related to recent events and/or the upcoming convention.

The university’s Employee Assistance Service will have a counselor available on campus during the workday for staff or faculty who wish to talk about their concerns.

Working in collaboration with the university’s LGBT Center, the Social Justice Institute will host a “safe space” adjacent to its offices (A15C) in the basement of Crawford Hall during the week. The Interreligious Council also will house a safe space for those who want to talk or reflect about their concerns at the Interfaith Plaza, located just east of the Church of the Covenant, 11205 Euclid Ave. Please contact these offices for schedules and other information.

Kelvin Smith Library

Kelvin Smith Library will not be open during the week of the convention, but some staff will be working remotely and able to assist patrons online.

Tinkham Veale University Center

The Tink will be open during the week, albeit with much reduced food options.

Athletic Facilities

The Veale Athletic, Recreation and Convocation Center will not be open during the week, while the Wyant Athletic and Wellness Center will remain open for those who have appropriate keycard access. One to One Fitness will operate on its normal hours.

Other Questions

Many of your questions will be answered by subsequent university, school or unit communications as well as conversations with your supervisors. If you have remaining inquiries or concerns, please direct them to rncquestions@case.edu.

The university regrets the inconvenience and disruption this development involves, and appreciates your patience as additional details are finalized and communicated this week.