By ESCC President Dr. Jim Shaeffer

Dear Eastern Shore Community:

As president of your Eastern Shore Community College I wanted to provide an update relative to how ESCC is navigating the white water caused by the coronavirus.

I will begin with what I’ve told our faculty, staff, and students and that is “Late last week we experienced some extraordinary circumstances with the coronavirus which in turn will require us, the ESCC community, to have an extraordinary response.”  And I am proud to say that responding to extraordinary circumstances in an extraordinary fashion is nothing new for ESCC personnel; I know this because all I need to do is look at all they’ve accomplished in the last nine months.

Here are some of the steps we have taken:

  • we’ve extended spring break one week through March 20 allowing us time to map out our response to the situation
  • we are aggressively moving to modify courses for remote delivery
  • in response to recommendations from VCCS we are canceling events through May 31
  • we are exploring teleworking and limiting the number of individuals on campus
  • buildings are open only for faculty and staff

As we respond to the coronavirus, our focus is on mission critical items for ESCCC and determining the best way forward in assisting our students to successfully complete the spring semester.

While we need to limit access to our campus, it is important to recognize that ESCC is not closed; the services that ESCC provides are very much open to the public.  By this I mean we continue to offer courses and we continue to support our students as they navigate their way through remotely delivered courses.  And ESSC’s services are open providing advising and enrolling students for the summer and the fall semesters.  

As part of our planning, please know that we are coordinating our efforts with the Governor’s Office, the VCCS including the Chancellor and all presidents, the Virginia Department of Emergency Management, and the Virginia Department of Health.  In addition, we are following the CDC recommendations.  

What is most important to note is that we are taking the necessary and appropriate steps to protect the health and well-being of our community. 

We’ve so much to celebrate with the double digit increases in spring enrollment, the passage of the G3 legislation that provides low cost access to our programs, the over $200,000 in additional financial aid for fall, and the adoption of our culture of YES!  These items and more give us the strength and knowledge that allow us to prevail through this challenge.  

We appreciate your support.