Welcome home, Spartans!
Whether you are new to the university or are a returning student, it is wonderful to have all of us together on campus. Last week, we welcomed 809 freshmen to the AU family. Members of the Class of 2025 represent 36 states and three countries and come from 310 high schools. Enjoy the first week of classes, Spartans. It’s going to be a great year!
A Message from the Dean
It is so great to see everyone back in classrooms. It’s been a long road to get here and I am so happy that we are all back in person. I wanted to remind you of a few key pieces of information as we start classes this week.
- Face Coverings – Illinois Governor J.B. Pritzker recently announced a school mask mandate. For this reason, the university will require all to wear face coverings indoors. Faculty are not required to wear masks while teaching, but will maintain safe distances from students throughout the class time.
- Zoom – If you are not feeling well, or you need to be absent from class, you will not have the option to Zoom into class. All fall classes are in person. If you are sick, please be sure to communicate directly with your faculty member to make up missed work or assignments.
- Surveillance Testing – AU will be conducting weekly random surveillance testing — using BinaxNOW, a rapid antigen test from Abbott Labs — among all students and employees. Should a student be selected for surveillance testing at some point during the year, he/she will be given instructions in terms of how, when, and where to participate. Surveillance testing will be conducted on campus with a self-administered nasal swab. Students and employees who are randomly selected will be expected to participate. Refusal to participate would be considered a violation of AU’s Code of Conduct. For more information, including the latest updates about COVID-19, please visit AU’s Forward Together webpage.
I also want to remind everyone about the telehealth program now available for AU students called TimelyCare
. The service provides access to medical and mental virtual healthcare from anywhere in the United States 24 hours a day, seven days a week, with no cost to visit. This service is available for both undergraduate and graduate students at all campuses. There are six services available:
- Medical: 24/7, on-demand access to a medical provider that can treat a wide range of common illnesses like cold and flu, sinus infection, and allergies.
- Scheduled Medical: Scheduled options to speak to a medical provider.
- TalkNow: 24/7, on-demand access to a mental health professional to talk about anything at anytime.
- Scheduled Counseling: Scheduled options to speak to a licensed counselor.
- Health Coaching: Access to a nutritional specialist to help students adopt healthier lifestyle behaviors related to sleep issues, weight management, and more.
- Psychiatry: Services provided by campus counseling referral.
I hope that you take advantage of TimelyCare services. AU is committed to providing you with a safe learning environment this academic year and access to health services for all of our students.
Welcome back! Let’s make the 2021–2022 academic year the best ever! Please don’t hesitate to reach out to me if you have any questions.
Jennifer L. Buckley, EdD
Dean, School of Education
P.S. Join the AU community for "Seven Steps to Success" during the "First Friday" event on August 27! Free food, refreshments, and chances to win some AMAZING prizes will be available from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. when you visit Phillips Library, Eckhart Hall (third floor), Campus Public Safety, Tru Blu Coffee, the Wackerlin Center, the Center for Student Success, and the Wellness Center.
August 27, 2021 "First Friday" campuswide events
August 30, 2021
Last day to add day classes; evening classes may be added prior to second class meeting; end of 100% refund for fall semester
September 6, 2021
Labor Day (no classes)
September 24, 2021
Founders Convocation (no day classes after 1:05 p.m.)
September 24–26, 2021
October 11, 2021
Last day to drop class with automatic “W”
October 15, 2021 Fall Break (no classes)
Schingoethe Center to open with "Curious by Nature" exhibit
The Schingoethe Center of Aurora University will host an opening reception for “Curious by Nature” on Tuesday, September 7, from 5–6:30 p.m. “Curious by Nature” showcases more than 80 prints and paintings by Charley and Edie Harper, providing a comprehensive look into the quirky, whimsical world of the artists. The Harpers are world famous for their signature style of “minimal realism,” capturing the spirit of their subjects with elegantly spare visual elements. The exhibit will run through Friday, December 10. The Schingoethe Center, located in the Hill Welcome Center on the southwest corner of campus along University Parkway, is a free museum and art gallery available for all AU students to explore.
Coronavirus (COVID-19) Resources and Updates
The university continues to provide coronavirus (COVID-19) updates online. The webpage also includes links to FAQs, additional resources, and CARES Act Reporting information.