Coronavirus Information

JBU has established an interdepartmental task force to monitor the current coronavirus outbreak and make decisions in accordance with directives from the Arkansas Department of Health, the CDC, the World Health Organization and the U.S. State Department. This page will serve as the central information repository and will be updated as new information becomes available.

 

Updated 4/1 1:25 p.m.

We are allowing students to postpone their April payment until April 15. This will give time for the room and board adjustments to be posted to the account. For those students who have past due balances because of pending room and board and work-study adjustments, we will postpone the hold to allow the students to register.

Updated 3/30 1:22 p.m.

JBU employees will continue to work from home through at least April 30 based on federal guidelines for social distancing. Essential staff will continue to work on campus but are required to take their temperature daily. If they or anyone in their household has a fever of 100.4 or higher, they should not return to campus until the household has been fever-free for 14 days. (Faculty teaching remote classes are included in essential staff.)

Updated 3/27

Drop Policy: Due to the change to online instruction, JBU will allow traditional undergraduate students to petition to drop a course until Friday, April 10, 2020. Before submitting a petition, you must talk with the instructor of your class so that potential issues can be worked out if possible. You may fill out the petition on the Registrar’s Office webpage (Forms) which will be automatically forwarded to your instructor. After your instructor gives permission, he/she will approve the form which will then proceed to the Registrar’s Office for final approval. You will receive an email once your petition has been fully approved. Keep in mind that all scholarship and financial aid hour requirements still stand. You must have 12 hours to be considered a full-time student. Scholarships have differing hours requirements. No refund of tuition will be available.

For online undergraduate students, Friday, April 3, 2020 is the last day to drop a Term B course. You must have 12 hours to be considered a full-time student. See the Online Undergraduate Catalog for the refund policy.

For graduate students, Monday, April 13, 2020 is the last day to drop a course. You must have 6 hours to be considered a full-time student. See the Graduate Catalog for the refund policy.

Pass/No Pass Policy: Due to the change to online instruction, JBU has decided to allow traditional undergraduate students to opt in to Pass/No Pass grading on a course by course basis. This would mean that your GPA will not be affected by a class for which you have chosen P/NP grading. P is equal to a C or higher in the class and will result in your earning credit in the class. NP is equal to a C- or lower in the class and will result in your NOT earning credit for the class.

Students must submit a Pass/No Pass form no later than April 10 for each course in which they desire to use P/NP grading. The forms can be found on the Registrar’s Office webpage (Forms). This form will go to your instructor for notification and then to the Registrar’s Office.

Updated 3/16 1:32 p.m.

We have made the decision to transition the majority of employees to work remotely through at least Mar. 31, effective on Tuesday, Mar 16.

As the university continues to focus on taking care of students and transitioning to online learning, certain departments will be asked to continue to work on campus (such as faculty, ATLAS and IT preparing for online classes) and observe social distancing guidelines and other requirements. 

Other essential services such as campus safety, food service (for students on remaining on campus) and facilities will continue to provide for the care, safety and health of our campus. All employees working on campus will be required to monitor their health daily. 
JBU recognizes that even employees who can work remotely may not be able to fulfill a complete workweek. All employees will be paid, but we may also ask employees to take on additional tasks in support of the university’s priorities during this time.

The Walton Lifetime Health Complex will close later today and, in general, we discourage the general public from coming into buildings on campus. The trail will remain open.

Faculty and staff should refer to the email they received and the FAQs for more information.

Updated 3/13 5:30 p.m.

Students: As things continue to change, we promised we would notify you. You may not have heard, but President Trump has declared a national emergency. Due to this change, unless you have a hardship, we need you to check out of your room no later than Monday at 5 p.m. and return home or find alternative housing. We understand that this is a change and we would be happy to work with anyone who needs an exception. Please email residencelife@jbu.edu and contact your RD. Please refer to communications from your RD about move out procedures.

 

Updated 3/12 9:00 p.m.

Traducción al Español

Dear JBU Community,

I am writing to share JBU’s decision in response to the pandemic threat of the coronavirus.

  • Face-to-face classes for undergraduate and graduate students will be temporarily suspended at the end of Friday, March 13.
  • Residential housing will close on Saturday, March 21.
  • Classes will resume in online format on Monday, March 30.

We did not come to this decision easily, because we know that it will be disruptive for the learning of JBU students, but we felt that it was necessary to protect the health of JBU faculty, staff and students and the community of Siloam Springs. By suspending classes for the week of March 16, we have additional time to prepare a better online experience for students to complete the semester. Please let me share the rationale and few details behind our decision.

We have been regularly monitoring the information provided by our local governmental and health authorities, the Arkansas Department of Health, Center for Disease Control and World Health Organization. Right now, the best information suggests that JBU and Siloam Springs are still at a relatively low risk for infection or spread of the coronavirus. That being said, we recognize that JBU’s spring break is only one week away and that our students, faculty and staff have plans to travel widely. This travel could increase the risk of someone in the JBU community becoming infected and bringing the virus back to campus and to Siloam Springs. We also recognize it would be difficult to control the spread of the virus on a residential campus, so we concluded moving to an online/remote education on March 30 is the most responsible and caring thing to do.

We decided to end face-to-face classes after tomorrow in order to give our faculty, staff and students two weeks to prepare for the transition to online learning. Students should expect to hear from individual faculty next week about their initial plans on how they will conduct classes starting March 30. Students are expected to stay fully engaged for the remainder of the semester, including being available during the time that your class regularly meets in case the faculty member chooses to teach live online at that time. We recognize that some students may have difficulties accessing the internet or experience other challenges using this online format, and we ask that if you anticipate difficulty, you contact the Help Desk (help@jbu.edu or 479-524-7256) next week to explore solutions to these challenges before March 30. We also ask that you communicate potential challenges with your faculty so they are aware of any accommodation you may need.

We also want to end face-to-face classes after tomorrow to give students adequate time to make appropriate arrangements to leave campus and move out of JBU housing. We have made this decision because the CDC suggests limiting indoor spaces in which large groups can gather, such as residential facilities and dining halls, because these areas present a greater risk of transmission. We selected this timeline because we recognize it would be a financial and logistical hardship on families and a potential health risk to the community to have students return sometime next month only to gather their belongings and move out of their rooms. We encourage residential students to move out as soon as possible though we realize this will take longer for some students. As long as the current relatively low-risk situation remains the same, JBU housing and dining facilities will remain open until Saturday, March 21 at 8 a.m. to provide flexibility.

We recognize that some students may experience particular hardships due to the closing of JBU housing at that time, including those students who may be from countries with travel restrictions or other extenuating circumstances. If you are in this situation, please contact Residence Life in the Walker Student Center or via email (reslife@jbu.edu) to discuss potential accommodation options.

JBU’s campus will remain open and as fully operational as feasible during this time. We will continue to educate and care for our students. We expect that faculty and staff will have full access to their offices and will continue to work as normal while following the recommended health and hygiene protocols outlined by the CDC. We recognize that some faculty and staff may be vulnerable because of underlying health conditions, and we would ask that you speak to HR about the best and safest way for you to continue working.

I know this announcement will raise numerous questions. We are preparing FAQs to answer most of those questions, and we would ask that you frequently check our coronavirus website (www.jbu.edu/coronavirus) as we update that page with new information. We will also set up a table in the Walker Student Center tomorrow from 10 a.m. - 3 p.m. where students can ask questions.

I am deeply saddened that circumstances have led to this decision. JBU is a special place, in large part, because we enjoy the fellowship of all the people who live, work, study and learn here together. Some of that fellowship may be diminished in this transition to online learning for the next four or five weeks. That being said, I would also challenge faculty, staff and students to think creatively about how they might support and encourage one another in new ways during this time.

I am particularly saddened about this decision for our graduating students. While we have not yet made any final decision about the commencement ceremony itself, I know that this decision means that you will lose the opportunity to finish your time at JBU as you expected. You have graced our community with your presence during your years here, and we are grateful for you. For students on campus, I will have times available tomorrow and early next week to take a graduation picture with you if you would like. We will have robes and diplomas available in my office for those pictures.

I look forward to welcoming all JBU students, both those graduating and those returning, back to campus in the future.

Finally, in this time of uncertainty and trial, let us not forget the God whom we serve. As Isaiah reminds us, “This is what the Lord says, he who created you, O Jacob, he who formed you, O Israel: “Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name, you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze. For I am the Lord, your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior.” JBU, we are a people of faith, not fear, and let us be a witness to that faith in this challenging time.

May it always be true of us at JBU.

Dr. Charles W. Pollard
President, John Brown University 

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Misc. Information

Cleaning & Sanitation Procedures

JBU Contacts

Residence Life - visit us in Walker Student Center

Technical questions - Help Desk / call or text 479-524-7256

Health-related questions - Rhonda Hostler, JBU nurse (479-524-7320).

International students - Billy Stevenson, senior director of International Admissions, (479-524-7119)

All other questions - fill out the form at the bottom of the page.

Outside Resources

For information about the virus and travel restrictions, visit the links below.

Miscellaneous Emails
Email from JBU Student Counseling Center 

Questions? Please visit the FAQ pages first.

(Links at top of page.)

If the FAQ pages don't have the answer you need, please fill out the form below.
We will do our best to respond as quickly as possible, but please be patient as we anticipate a high volume of questions.