AMHERST, MA. – The Student Government Association convened on the evening of March 11, 2020 for its Senate Meeting and discussed the intended transition to remote learning due to the COVID-19 pandemic. A letter to the student body was completed following the meeting and was distributed campus-wide the following afternoon.
The full text of the letter has been included below for reference.
March 11, 2020
Dear Student Body,
After the recent announcement from the Chancellor regarding UMass’s Transition to Remote Course Delivery,
we as your Student Government Association (SGA) would like to express to you all that we are here to help you
navigate this situation. As students, we understand your frustrations and concerns. We are committed to
supporting you in every way that we can.
This transition poses many questions regarding the functioning of student groups and finances. As a Student
Government, we are developing a FAQ sheet to address key issues with the further functioning of Established
Student Organizations (ESO) regarding events, travel, and group finances. This list is not exhaustive: we will be
vigilant with our communication about other concerns or specific questions. In order to address more specific
questions that may arise, we have created a Response Form where you can reach out to us and we will connect
you with the appropriate resources to best meet your needs. The SGA Office will, unfortunately, be closed on
March 14th, and we will not reopen until April 6th — pending student return to campus. However, SGA
Officers will be accessible by email and will be responding to submitted inquiries.
The SGA has created a task force that wrote a list of frequently asked questions, separated in order of priority
which will be answered by administration in the coming days or weeks. We will be communicating information
around housing, dining, and refunds around certain fees to the student body. We will also be using this
information to advocate for all undergraduate students impacted by these circumstances; including those who
are homeless, food insecure, international and out-of-state students, and all student workers. We will continue to
hold ourselves accountable to the students we are elected and appointed to represent, and we are committed to
continuously learning how the campus expects us to lead and welcome all input.
In the coming days, we will be sharing additional information through our social media and website. Student
Affairs and Campus Life will also be sharing information on a website platform responding to the actions taken
by the University. We ask that you continue to check your emails regularly as more updates arise from us and
the campus administration. We will be doing our best to support the student body that we are here to represent.
We want to be able to address any questions and concerns that you may have on this matter.
Please take care of yourselves and feel free to reach out for guidance and support. As the University works to
identify ways to maneuver this new landscape for student life, keep yourselves informed and healthy.
Your Student Government Association
For questions or additional information, please contact us here.