Academic calendar expected to remain unchanged despite Irma closures

The academic calendar will remain the same, despite campus closures due to Hurricane Irma. SPECIAL TO THE ORACLE

Following six days of closures due to Hurricane Irma, university officials are not planning to take away students’ reading days or Veteran’s Day holiday. Instead, the proposed plan is to leave the academic calendar unchanged. 

According to Paul Dosal, Vice President for Student Affairs & Student Success, the idea is to provide a buffer in the event of more closures in the future. 

“We can and should avoid extending the academic calendar,” Dosal said. He instead said students and faculty should plan to readjust course syllabi accordingly. 

Provost Ralph Wilcox spoke to the Faculty Senate on Wednesday and said faculty and students deserve a definitive decision.

“We owe it to faculty and students to get a timely plan for the remainder of the semester,” Wilcox said. 

The idea of carrying on through the semester with the academic calendar as planned is not yet final, according to Wilcox, and Faculty Senate is expected to vote on the decision. It next meets in full Oct. 18.

“The reason that we have not made a final decision is because we want to be sure that Faculty Senate has a voice in the decision,” Wilcox said.

Members of the Faculty Senate where given the opportunity to express their concerns regarding the proposal. No members of the senate took issue with the proposal at the time, so Dosal said he was confident the proposal would be made official. 

Another considered option was to move the deadline for midterm grades. Dosal said the preference is to keep everything unchanged.

As it stands, midterm grades must be submitted by Oct. 24, the Veteran’s Day holiday will result in campus closures on Nov. 10, reading days — times designated for student exam preparations — are Nov. 21-22 and the semester concludes Dec. 7.