April 3, 2020

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SIU students,

I write to provide the following update on a number of important topics, including summer classes and student employment. As always, we appreciate your patience as we work through complex challenges.


Given the uncertainty surrounding the length of the pandemic, all summer and intersession courses will be conducted online. Registration opens on Monday, April 6. Please contact your academic advisor with questions and any assistance needed.


I encourage you to take a critical step to support SIU Carbondale and your Carbondale community by responding to the Census 2020 invitation sent to your Carbondale address. You don’t need the invitation to complete the census: you can go online and complete it through this link: 2020 U.S. Census.  You do not need your unique ID to complete the survey. Simply enter your physical address where you lived while attending SIU Carbondale. 

By completing the Census, you help ensure that the City of Carbondale, Jackson County, and the State of Illinois receive the federal funding necessary to support services utilized on and around campus. Included are initiatives such as Pell Grants, public transportation, mental health services, infrastructure, roads and more. The Census data also has a significant impact on our state representation in Congress.


Student employees provide valuable support for university operations, and we know students rely on campus jobs to help cover tuition, rent and other expenses. Unfortunately, many students were not able to continue to work on campus due to the governor’s “stay-at-home” order. Others have continued to work based on the needs of their departments.

Recognizing the importance of student employment, we have committed that students with campus jobs will continue to be paid, whether or not they were able to fulfill their responsibilities. At the same time, we want to acknowledge those students who are still actively working.

Below, we have laid out our plans for all student employees to be paid through May 8, the end of the semester.

  • For the pay period of March 8 to March 21 students will be paid for the actual hours they worked. Funds will be deposited directly into bank accounts, as usual, today, April 3.
  • For the balance of the semester, beginning March 22, all students, including those on federal work-study funds, will be paid based on the average hours worked in the eight weeks before spring break. Here are some examples:
    • If you averaged 15 hours per week before spring break, you will be paid for 15 hours per week through May 8.
    • If you worked 10 hours for four weeks and 15 hours for four weeks before spring break, you will be paid for 12.5 hours per week through May 8.
  • All students will be paid at their regular hourly rates, and direct deposits will be made on the regular payroll schedule: April 17 and May 1, 15 and 29.
  • In addition, students who have continued to work will receive a bi-weekly stipend reflecting actual hours worked from March 22 through May 8.
  • Please note that students who continue to work do so because they have jobs that have been deemed necessary to their departments and they are available to work. Students who are not currently working may not return to their jobs.
  • This plan does not apply to students with graduate assistantships, who are expected to be available for work. They will continue to be paid as usual.

While no plan can address every situation, our goal has been to be as fair and reasonable as possible. Please email pandemicinfo@siu.edu with questions.


Please remember that you still have access to many university support services whether you are on campus or at home.   As a reminder, here are just a few:

  • Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS): Counselors are available to help students with mental health concerns or coach students who are dealing with anxiety surrounding the COVID-19 outbreak. CAPS staff are available by phone at 618-453-5371 from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday and 1 to 9 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Treatment and coaching options have been expanded to accommodate students remotely and now include telehealth appointments, skills coaching or referrals to other providers in your area.
  • Morris Library: Reference services are being delivered virtually through Ask a Librarian or by phone at 618-453-1455. Library staff members are scanning parts of books for faculty and students on demand. Current Fair Use best practices allow scanning of entire books if necessary. Please consult the Morris Library Covid-19 FAQ for more information.
  • Saluki Cares: Students in distress due to financial, academic or other concerns can reach out to Saluki Cares for help. Email siucares@siu.edu, fill out a referral form or call 618-453-2461.
  • SalukiTech: Contact SalukiTech for technology services. SalukiTech also has online resources to assist students, faculty and staff impacted by the “stay-at-home” order.
  • Student Health Services: Staff are available to answer health-related questions by phone and email. Students can call 618-453-3311 or email shcinfo@siu.edu with health-related questions. Please do not share personal health-related information by email. Students in the Carbondale area should call ahead to make appointments.
  • Students Legal Assistance: Enrolled students have access to legal assistance in selected areas. Visit the website to learn more or email sladesk@siu.edu.


I’m sure you are aware that Governor Pritzker has extended the “stay-at-home” order through April 30. We remind students who did not return to the residence halls after spring break that they may not return until further notice; fob access has been turned off and meal plans have been suspended. Students who are already here should stay here in compliance with the order, which is intended to stem the spread of COVID-19. When you put yourself at risk in defiance of the order, you put others at risk, as well.


Students who had housing contracts have been advised of potential reimbursements if they did not return after spring break. We continue to receive requests related to reimbursements of various fees. As noted before, this is a complex issue with many complicated details. We appreciate your patience.


We have consulted with undergraduate and graduate student government leaders about commencement options. Students who are scheduled to graduate in May will receive a survey regarding their preferences for how best to honor our graduates. We realize that this is a rare and seminal moment in your lives.

We will continue to keep you updated as we have new information to share. Meanwhile, you can email pandemicinfo@siu.edu with questions.


John M. Dunn