VP Message- COVID-19 Update- April 6th, 2020

Dear DSA team,

I hope this all finds you doing well and having enjoyed some relaxing downtime over the weekend.

Some updates:

Continuity of Staffing

  • UNT Facilities has a small crew of custodial staff cleaning the buildings that are in use. To help ensure all campus facilities are thoroughly maintained we are asking those essential employees who are still working on campus to set your trash cans outside your office or cubicle door each night. This signal will ensure all trash is removed from the buildings. It also lets custodians know where people are working so that they can wipe down and disinfect door handles. If you see any areas that are needing a little extra attention, please call ext. 2700 or submit a work order request.
  • Students with federal or state work-study, who are not able to work on-campus or telecommute will still be paid through May 15. We do not want to displace these students because it was part of the aid package. Departments will still be responsible for the 30% they typically pay.
  • If you no longer have work for some of your student employees, please refer them to the Career Center. They are working to move students to available positions. Supervisors can communicate with Patricia Chastain at patricia.chastain@unt.edu or 940-565-2105 about students you are seeking to reassign.

Student Needs

  • We have made the effort to continue to employ as many of our student workers as possible. We are allowing those whose duties permit to telecommute, and are providing as many hours as available to others. For student workers who have been displaced from their on-campus employment, the University decided to pay those students for 20 hours per week for the first two weeks of April. The supervisors of impacted students have already been contacted.
  • We know some students have returned home and/or who do not wish to continue their student employment at this time. We encourage these students to continue to communicate with their supervisors as many of these positions will be available when the University is fully operational.
  • Please keep driving folks to our Parent and Family Hotline at 844-366-5892. The hotline is available from 10 a.m. to 2. p.m. on Saturdays and Sundays and 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday through Friday.
  • We have moved our April 18 and May 1 transfer orientation sessions online. Discussions are ongoing regarding our summer orientations.
  • Plans for summer classes are being finalized and the University expects to make an announcement this week.
  • If you know of a student experiencing financial need, encourage them to apply for emergency funding through Start Green, Stay Green. As always, you also can contact SMMC or DOS as usual. SOS will continue to respond to individual student issues and needs and direct services accordingly.

Continuity of Communications

  • Until communication regarding COVID-19 to our students and parents decreases, please run your social media posts through Brady Burns and Amy Armstrong. This is not in an attempt to police what you are posting, but to make sure our efforts are coordinated. Amy and Brady also will have an idea of future communications that may be going out to ensure your message isn’t lost in the shuffle.
  • If you have specific questions, please funnel these through your direct report. This will allow us to best coordinate communications. 
  • All media inquiries related to Coronavirus should be sent to Leigh Ann Gullett in UBSC Leigh.Gullett@unt.edu.
  • Please check https://healthalerts.unt.edu/ for all the latest updates from the University.
  • All questions can be directed to Amy Armstrong, 940.565.2464 or amy.armstrong@unt.edu


If you know of staff members who are going above and beyond during this time, please email student.affairs@unt.edu describing their effort. We want to highlight some of these examples as we discuss how we have come together as a caring campus community to respond to this health crisis. These also will be sent to the president for use on a campus level.

  • Kudos to Gina Vanacore, her staff and all the RAs. They have been so resilient and have checked out almost 5,000 people this past week!
  • Thanks to Patricia Chastain for rising to the challenge of helping our student employees and their supervisors navigate these difficult times!

Thank you for all of your continued hard work!

Take care,

Elizabeth With Ed.D.

Vice President for Student Affairs