Published April 8, 2020
Dear Faculty, Postdoctoral Scholars and Graduate Students:
Because of the extraordinary ongoing efforts of our faculty and staff, we are successfully delivering our spring courses through remote instruction and continuing to address related challenges as they arise. However, we realize that the effort to transition to remote instruction – as well as limited access to labs, archives, studios, and field and clinical locations – have disrupted faculty, postdoctoral, and graduate student research and scholarship. In addition, the COVID-19 situation is posing unique challenges and causing anxiety for graduate students and postdoctoral scholars who are preparing to enter a disrupted job market.
As a public research university, it is important that UB focus attention on the challenges that our faculty, research staff, postdocs, and graduate students are experiencing as a result of the COVID-19 disruption. To that end, I am forming a Research and Graduate Education Task Force, which will be led by Vice President for Research and Economic Development Venu Govindaraju and Vice Provost for Academic Affairs and Dean of the Graduate School Graham Hammill. This task force will be charged with delivering recommendations by May 8, 2020 on issues that include:
Now more than ever, it is critical for faculty, postdocs and graduate students to utilize available technology to maintain close working relationships so that, as a campus community, we can continue the significant progress we have made in increasing grant applications, scholarly productivity, clinical care, and research impact. Even in the face of the current challenges, I know that we all share the goal of sustaining this strong research momentum by reopening our research facilities and reengaging in our scholarship as soon as possible. We will do so but must maintain our first priority, which is to protect the health and well-being of all members of the campus community. I look forward to the recommendations of the Research and Graduate Education Task Force to insure that we do everything we can to meet your needs.
Thanks to all of you for your continued efforts to sustain your scholarly activity during this challenging time.
A. Scott Weber Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs