Latest Student Updates

Fall Semester Update Monday, June 22 at 3:30 p.m.

UAB students,

We’re looking forward to uniting on campus again. University and System leadership are in constant contact with infectious disease and public health experts as we plan for a safe return to campus. We will provide regular updates and greater detail about plans leading up to the fall semester.

To stay informed, please read all emails from UAB, including Greenmail every Wednesday. You can also visit uab.edu/coronavirus and uab.edu/reentry, both of which have student-specific sections.

Key COVID-19 safety strategies for the fall (detailed plans will be communicated):

  • Students, faculty and staff will complete a COVID-19 safety training prior to reentry
  • Masks/face coverings and social distancing will be required and enforced
  • COVID-19 testing will be used strategically, informed by infectious disease experts
  • Use of UAB-developed symptom monitoring “health check” and exposure notification technology
  • Educational and instructional safety signage posted throughout campus
  • Extensive cleaning and disinfecting practices in place
  • Residence halls and other buildings will take special precautions
  • We will not return to in-person fall semester instruction after Thanksgiving Break; after the Thanksgiving Break there will be one week of remote/alternate instruction classes, and final exams will be taken remotely the following week (we plan to resume in-person classes for the spring semester in January 2021)
  • In the interest of safety, summer commencement will be held virtually (graduates who wish to walk in a future in-person ceremony will have the opportunity to do so)
  • Guidance, health tips and updates will be communicated regularly

In addition, our hybrid instruction model will safely manage class sizes starting in the fall semester to promote social distancing. In most classes, students will rotate days in and out of the classroom with a combination of in-person and remote learning. Faculty (who will address class format in their syllabi) will provide in-person instruction to roughly 30-50 percent of students registered in a class while a camera system feeds real-time video to the remainder of the class remotely. The recording will also be available in Canvas for later viewing. Equipment has been secured to support the hybrid model and will be installed in time for the fall semester.

Again, please check your email regularly and read Greenmail every Wednesday for important updates. If you have family members who would also like to receive Greenmail, sign up here.

In the meantime, please continue to be an example in our community by following important COVID-19 safety guidelines.

#UABUnited,
Ray L. Watts, UAB President
Pam Benoit, UAB Provost
John Jones, Vice President of UAB Student Affairs

Fall Semester Housing Update Wednesday, June 17 at 8 a.m.

Despite our nation's efforts to slowly reopen our cities and economies, COVID-19 continues to be a very real and serious threat to the health and safety of our community and will continue to be into the fall semester as well. As a result, it is vital for us to implement strict protocols and practices within the residence halls to continue to keep you and your families as safe as possible.

Please carefully review the changes outlined below. Additional information will be sent on a regular basis throughout the rest of the summer.

IMPORTANT STUDENT HOUSING UPDATES FOR FALL 2020

  • All residence hall rooms, lobbies, lounges, and laundry rooms will be thoroughly cleaned, disinfected, and sanitized prior to opening for fall. Common area spaces (lobbies, lounges, laundry rooms, elevators) will be cleaned more frequently throughout the day during the year.
  • Residents will be required to complete an online COVID safety precaution training module and a contract addendum prior to arriving on campus to move in.
  • We anticipate that all residents – symptomatic or not – will be asked to be tested for COVID-19 before moving into the residence halls. More information will be provided as details and guidance are available.
  • Green Hall (our newest residence hall currently under construction) will not be completely open for operation until late Fall 2020; some students will have an opportunity to delay moving on campus until it is complete. If you would like to consider this option, please notify us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
  • Rast and Blount Halls have private bedrooms and will be fully occupied this fall. Because the common areas will be used by up to four people, residents in these halls will be required to clean and disinfect their apartments weekly.
  • Students who require any special accommodations must register with Disability Student Services to provide the required documentation for housing accommodation requests. If you have not already started this process, we encourage you to do so as soon as possible. For more information, go to www.uab.edu/dss.
  • Residents will only be allowed limited personal belongings in the halls this fall - more details will follow.
  • VISITORS WILL NOT BE ALLOWED IN ANY UAB RESIDENCE HALL FOR THE ENTIRE FALL SEMESTER.
  • In-hall gatherings will be very limited and prohibited for groups larger than ten (10) people.
  • Lounges and lobbies will be restricted to ten (10) people or less, and 6 feet of separation between individuals must be maintained.
  • Face masks will be required in common areas and wearing them will be enforced.
  • No more than two residents on an elevator at a time – riders will face opposite walls with face masks in place.
  • Residents must notify Student Health should they experience any symptoms related to COVID-19.
  • Residents must self-isolate if they have COVID-related symptoms. Apartments designated for quarantine and isolation will be made available; residents will be required to temporarily relocate to those spaces until symptoms subside and Student Health clears them to return to their assigned residence hall.
  • UAB plans to make exposure notification technology available to anonymously alert individuals of possible exposure to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19.
  • Students will be required to complete a web-based health check assessment, and students may be asked to participate in voluntary, sentinel COVID-19 testing during the semester.

Information for Returning Residents

Students who wish to cancel their fall application may do so and will receive a full refund of all Fall 2020 housing application fees paid to date if we receive your request on or before July 1. A separate email will be sent with instructions upon your request. If you decide to cancel for the fall semester, we encourage you to consider returning to housing in the spring, as we hope to progress toward returning to more normal operation within Student Housing.

Please email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if your plans have changed and you would like more information about the cancellation process.

Fall Semester Schedule Tuesday, June 16 at 2:30 p.m.

UAB students, faculty and staff,

Our gradual re-entry to campus continues and is going well, as is our planning with the University of Alabama System for a safe return this fall with a hybrid model – a course delivery system which, because of social distancing precautions, requires a combination of both in-person instruction and remote instruction. To promote the health and safety of the campus community, adjustments have been made to the fall semester schedule:

  • Fall semester hybrid classes will start Monday, Aug. 24, 2020.
  • Fall semester hybrid classes will end Friday, Nov. 20, for the Thanksgiving break.
  • Students will not return to campus after Thanksgiving break.
  • Exceptions can be granted for students based on work, research or clinical responsibilities, and accommodations can be requested for international students or others who do not have alternate living arrangements.
  • Classes during the week of Nov. 30-Dec. 4, as well as final exams during the week of Dec. 7-11, will be conducted remotely.
    Coursework engagement during these weeks is necessary to accommodate SACSCOC accrediting standard requirements for credit granted for coursework.

Additional information for our phased re-entry to campus (including details about on-campus housing, classroom protocols, personal protective equipment, and COVID-19 training and testing) continue to be worked out and will be communicated in the coming days and weeks. UAB’s e-newsletters are your source of official information. To stay informed of the latest news and updates, students are encouraged read Greenmail each Wednesday, and faculty and staff are encouraged to read eReporter each Tuesday and Friday. We will also continue to update uab.edu/coronavirus and uab.edu/reentry.

In the meantime, please continue to be an example in our community by following important COVID-19 safety guidelines.

Information and resources for students Wednesday, May 27 at 9 a.m.

UAB Students,

What you have done to fight through the stress and uncertainty that come with sudden change is a big accomplishment. We are proud that you are part of the Blazer family.

You’re an integral part of a health-promoting university where students champion The Blazer Way, a creed that celebrates accountability as we represent our unique community with honor and integrity.

At this time, being a Blazer means doing our part to keep our community safe by following important guidelines:

  • Wear a mask/face covering when around others
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects
  • Stay at least 6 feet away from others
  • Practice good hand hygiene, and avoid touching your face
  • Cover your mouth and nose with your sleeve when you sneeze or cough

Additional guidance and resources from Student Health are available online. Remember, free counseling can be a helpful resource in times of isolation and uncertainty.

Additional Resources

There are many resources available to you, including Blazer Kitchen for those with food insecurity, financial assistance through UAB and the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (CARES Act, June 1 deadline), and remote learning guidance and tools, as well as answers to many frequently asked questions and more. Please visit uab.edu/coronavirus for details.

Updates and Planning

In partnership with the University of Alabama System and with the support of the Board of Trustees, we are committed to making our campus among the safest in America as you return at the right time and under the right conditions. On-campus classes remain canceled for the summer, but our goal is to resume in-person classes in the fall.

Between now and then, we plan to phase in a gradual re-entry to campus, taking into account the dynamic and evolving circumstances. In this plan, some groups will return to campus before others. At this time, some students in clinical and research roles are beginning to return to campus (mostly postdoctoral and graduate/pre-doctoral students with limited exceptions for undergraduates) with prior approval, training and a health check.

Task forces are developing comprehensive plans for a safe fall semester re-entry, including training and testing, enter/exit control, personal protective equipment, social distancing, and hygiene. We will have protocols for classrooms, dining, residence halls, recreation, health and counseling services, and other areas critical to a safe return. To promote classroom safety, we are exploring a variety of learning models that we will review with student and faculty leaders to identify the best solution for UAB.

Current plans are for our return to be supported by UAB’s Safe Together Now platform, which includes a symptom and exposure tracking COVID-19 assessment tool, as well as an anonymous, HIPAA-privacy compliant contact tracer in partnership with Apple, Google and the Alabama Department of Public Health.

Many experts are involved in our planning. Earlier this month, we captured some other ways UAB experts are making a difference in our community and beyond. UAB students, faculty and staff have demonstrated a great fighting spirit of resilience and innovation in these times.

Thank you for all you have done and continue to do.

Ever Faithful. Ever Loyal.

Ray L. Watts
President

Pam Benoit
Provost

John Jones
Vice President, Student Affairs

Important Information about your Classes Tuesday, March 24 at 1 p.m.

To say these are unprecedented times is an understatement. The challenges posed by the novel coronavirus COVID-19 are tremendous, and we realize you have had to face a lot of uncertainty and change in a short amount of time.

The decision to move to virtual instruction was made with your health and well-being in mind. The goal of these changes is to minimize the need to gather in large groups and spend prolonged time in proximity with each other in spaces. As part of our Academic Continuity Plan, we are adding a supplemental plan to allow a student to elect pass/fail grading in spring semester courses, on a course-by-course basis. The details are included here. Please read over this so you are prepared to speak with your professors about any of these changes.

Even though we will be working at a distance, I am personally reminded of just how connected we are to one another. You each have had to adapt quickly and change behaviors to keep our community safe. I am proud to be a Blazer right alongside you, and we will continue to work together each step of the way.

Our dedicated faculty have been working around the clock to respond to the challenges posed by COVID-19. Our instructors have developed creative ways to adapt their materials to our new environment. Be sure to watch for their updates in your inbox. I am especially grateful to our eLearning and Center for Teaching and Learning staffs who have made resources available to instructors and students. I invite you all to visit uab.edu/coronavirus and peruse the Student section to become familiar with resources available to help you prepare for online learning.

This new reality is still fluid and uncertain. It is normal to experience feelings of stress and frustration, but I want you to know that we are here for you and that we are in this together. I encourage you to check out the Student resources, specifically those for your mental health and well-being, at uab.edu/coronavirus. UAB Blazers are resilient, and we will overcome each hurdle together.

We are excited about welcoming you back to classes tomorrow. Your learning and progress move us forward toward a bright and exciting future.

Office of the Provost cancels study abroad programs through Aug. 15 Wednesday, March 18 at 12 p.m.

UAB continues to monitor the worldwide novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic while keeping your impending study abroad in mind. The health and safety of our students is our top priority when it comes to our education abroad programs; therefore, the university has issued the following decision:

Effective immediately, the university is suspending all UAB Education Abroad programs through August 15 as a result of the U.S. Department of State Global Level 3 Health Advisory-Reconsider Travel.

It is for this reason that study abroad taking place in summer 2020 is cancelled.

For students on faculty-led programs

The Office of Education Abroad will encourage faculty leaders to redevelop their courses to be facilitated at UAB. Please watch for further communication from your faculty member. If you individually purchased airfare, refund considerations will be collected by the Office of Education Abroad with proof that the air carrier will not issue a refund or flight credit due to the worldwide pandemic.

For students on summer affiliate programs

The Office of Education Abroad encourages students to work with their academic advisors to identify alternative courses to ensure their academic progress.

Financials Processes

UAB Education Abroad will be working to refund any fees paid directly to our office, including the admin fee and faculty led program fees, via original payment. This may take a little time with UAB limited business operations but we will notify you when this has occurred. If you applied for summer 2020 scholarships, we encourage you to consider applying for a future term, as your effort this summer will not go unnoticed.

We are saddened by the worldwide effects of the pandemic, including the impact on your study abroad plans. However, we hope you understand that your health is our highest priority and that this decision has not been taken lightly. We understand that this information may be overwhelming, but please know that the university stands ready to assist students with these resources.

We sincerely hope that you’ll consider studying abroad in the future — our team stands ready to assist you with deferring your plans.

Student Residential Update from John Jones Sunday, March 15 at 4 p.m.

Dear UAB Residential Student,

Due to the rapid escalation of the COVID-19 pandemic, UAB needs to minimize the volume of people on campus as quickly as possible to protect the health and safety of students, faculty and staff, and our community.

We need your help during this difficult and unprecedented time. Online classes will begin on Wednesday, March 25, after an extended spring break.

Students who left campus for spring break:

  • PLEASE DO NOT RETURN TO CAMPUS. For safety reasons, returning students cannot be permitted to return to their residence hall until further notice. If you have questions or concerns, please contact Student Housing at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. We will follow up with you as soon as possible.

Students still on campus living in a residence hall:

  • If you have another place to live and can leave the residence hall, PLEASE LEAVE CAMPUS AS SOON AS POSSIBLE but no later than the end of the day Tuesday, March 17. If you do not have another place to live, please contact Student Housing now at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for guidance and assistance. We will follow up with you as soon as possible.
  • We have consulted at length with COVID-19 experts. For safety reasons, only students who do not have a place to go (e.g., students with an exceptional hardship or international students) can be allowed to stay in a residence hall.
  • Take any essential belongings and school-related resources you will need with you.

I realize this is a very difficult situation. It was our desire to minimize disruptions by accommodating students who preferred to stay on campus during spring break. However, it has become clear that the COVID-19 pandemic — now a state and national emergency — requires us to drastically reduce the number of people on campus for safety reasons.

The Student Affairs team is here to support you in this transition and will do what we can, but we must ask for your cooperation during this public health crisis.

A note for student workers/employees: UAB will be moving to limited business operations for university employees in Workgroup A no later than 5 p.m. Monday, March 16, that will only allow for essential employees to come to campus, with others working from home or not working. On-campus student employment will be suspended with very few exceptions for a period of at least 14 days. During this two-week period, student employees/workers will be paid. In the event of a prolonged disruption, leadership will work with all sources (federal, state, etc.) in an effort to continue financial support of our employees. Further, UAB Leadership is exploring opportunities — including possible use of the Benevolent Fund — to financially help employees who encounter hardships due to the suspension of work IF limited business last longer than two weeks.

We are committed to making this transition as smooth as possible. For more COVID-19 updates and information, please check your emails regularly and access the student information pages under "Info for You" at uab.edu/coronavirus.

Update from Dr. John Jones Friday, March 13 at 6:30 p.m.

UAB student update from Dr. John Jones

UAB is extending spring break through at least March 24 and will use alternative means of instruction with two goals in mind — protect your health and promote your academic progress. During this time, we will work to ensure all needed resources are available to you, keep you updated on any changes in plans or timelines and answer your questions as best and quickly as possible.

Circumstances change quickly, so we encourage you to read the emails we send promptly and check this website for answers to frequently asked questions.

On Campus Residential Students

If there are academic materials, medication or other items left in the residence halls that are needed during break, please contact housing at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

For the health and safety of our residents, all overnight visitation in the residence halls is immediately suspended until further notice with the exception of guests approved by 5 p.m. March 13.

All Students

Also note Hill Student Center, inclusive of dining options, will close at 7 p.m. Sunday, March 15, and Campus Recreation will close operations at 9 p.m. Monday, March 16 until further notice.

Student workers/employees/interns who remain on campus and want to continue working may be able to maintain their normal work schedule. As the situation continues to develop, be in contact with your supervisor.

For graduate students appointed in a graduate position receiving a monthly stipend (Graduate Research Assistant, Graduate Teaching Assistant, Graduate Student Trainee) stipend payments will continue. Please consult your Mentor or Graduate Program Director regarding ongoing research and teaching obligations in order to coordinate a plan for on-campus work. Graduate Students appointed in to a “Graduate Assistant” position (paid bi-weekly), will be paid for a period of 14 days, and then UAB will reassess.

Student Health will remain open, but anyone who suspects that they might be contagious should call first — 205-934-3580 during regular hours or 205-934-3411 after hours to page the provider on call.

We know you will have more questions, and we are working to organize a webinar/online town hall to answer them and make this transition as smooth as possible.

We continue to work toward the continued well-being of our UAB community, especially our students.

Below are frequently asked questions about UAB and COVID-19. For a complete look at UAB's re-entry plan, please visit uab.edu/reentry.

UAB Student FAQs

Is UAB closed?

As part of the University of Alabama System Office’s 24/7 planning to safeguard our campus community, it has developed an Updated Interim Emergency Policy regarding summer classes. Given that the majority of our summer courses offered after June 22 have already transitioned to an online format, we will not offer in-person/on-site classes for summer 2020. All instruction will be delivered remotely using the most effective tools available.

Students, please work with your faculty members to access materials and utilize all the teaching and learning tools we have posted for you. Although classes are not being taught in person this spring or summer, our faculty is delivering a full array of courses through remote teaching. This FAQ provides important details regarding laboratories, in-person research, residence halls and campus dining, in addition to grading methods and other important updates.

As we have previously announced, we will not hold in-person orientations or commencement ceremonies until further notice. We have online programming prepared for both. All of you who look forward to participating in a future graduation ceremony on campus will have that opportunity as soon as on-campus operations are restored and scheduled. Click here from more information on commencement.

In partnership with the University of Alabama System and with the support of the Board of Trustees, UAB is committed to making our campus among the safest in America as students return at the right time and under the right conditions. On June 10, 2020, the University of Alabama System approved plans for a safe return to all three of its campuses. Click here to see the full plan.

Update on Fall 2020 Semester

The University of Alabama System is planning a safe return this fall with a hybrid model – a course delivery system which, because of social distancing precautions, requires a combination of both in-person instruction and remote instruction. To promote the health and safety of the campus community, adjustments have been made to the fall semester schedule:

  • Fall semester hybrid classes will start Monday, Aug. 24, 2020.
  • Fall semester hybrid classes will end Friday, Nov. 20, for the Thanksgiving break.
  • Students will not return to campus after Thanksgiving break.
    Exceptions can be granted for students based on work, research or clinical responsibilities, and accommodations can be requested for international students or others who do not have alternate living arrangements.
  • Classes during the week of Nov. 30-Dec. 4, as well as final exams during the week of Dec. 7-11, will be conducted remotely.
    Coursework engagement during these weeks is necessary to accommodate SACSCOC accrediting standard requirements for credit granted for coursework.

Click here to view UAB's phased re-entry plan.

Can UAB host large meetings/gatherings again?

At this time, UAB requires social distancing and masks on campus. To minimize social interaction in the interest of safety, meetings should be held virtually as much as possible until further notice.

  • Any on-campus meeting will require attendees to maintain at least a 6-foot radius distance from all other people, and attendees should wear a mask/face covering.
  • At this time, no groups of more than 10 attendees may gather on campus without prior approval. Any meeting exceeding 10 individuals in one place should be of an essential nature and will require prior approval from a dean or vice president.
  • Unit-specific re-entry operational plans should consider the density of offices/employees and implement strategies that uphold social distancing guidelines. If circumstances in a particular setting make social distancing difficult, consider alternate schedules, remote work or other strategies. Some activities may require personnel to work within a 6-foot radius, but it is critical to keep those interactions to a minimum.

This guidance will evolve in future phases of Modified Business Operations and campus re-entry as we continue to monitor and assess the fluid and dynamic circumstances presented by the COVID-19 pandemic.

I need a reasonable accommodation for my health concern. What should I do?

Students and employees with specific health concerns should contact their health care provider for medical advice tailored to their individual situations. Employees can then consult with the AWARE program in Human Resources about personal disability-related accommodations that might be necessary. Students who need ADA/504 accommodations based on disability should contact Disability Support Services

What should I do if I am too stressed to do well in my courses?

We certainly recognize that the current COVID-19 outbreak can bring stress and increased levels of fear and anxiety. Everyone reacts differently to stressful situations. See the Self-Check List for recognizing distress at the UAB Student Counseling Services website.

I'm a student worker. What should I do?

UAB is operating under limited business operations for ALL university employees in Workgroup A. Limited business operations only allow for essential employees to come to campus, with others working from home or not working.

On-campus student employment will be suspended with very few exceptions.

Graduate students: Please consult your Mentor or Graduate Program Director regarding ongoing research and teaching obligations in order to coordinate a plan for on-campus work. Contact your supervisor for more information.

Will UAB have summer commencement ceremonies?

We are deeply disappointed that our graduating Blazers will not experience a traditional commencement this summer. To recognize and celebrate your accomplishments, virtual ceremonies for Summer 2020 are scheduled for Friday, August 14, 2020 at 6:00 p.m. (graduate students: masters and doctoral) and Saturday, August 15, 2020 at 2:00 p.m. (undergraduate students). The ceremonies can be viewed on UAB’s Facebook page, Instagram TV (IGTV) and YouTube.

Graduates will have the opportunity to walk in future ceremonies. The registration link to sign up to walk in a future ceremony will be available approximately 6 weeks prior to the commencement date. Please refer to the UAB Commencement Website for additional FAQs and the latest information regarding commencement activities.

What is UAB and the UA system doing to work toward reopening campus?

The University of Alabama System created a task force led by UAB Health System experts to develop plans for its three campuses — University of Alabama, University of Alabama at Birmingham and University of Alabama in Huntsville — to be the safest universities in America when on-campus instruction resumes.

On June 10, 2020, the University of Alabama System approved plans for a safe return to all three of its campuses. Click here to see the full plan.

Are Residence Halls closed?

Residence Halls are currently closed with plans to reopen for the Fall 2020 semester.

Click here for a full list of frequently asked quesitions and information about resident halls reopening for the Fall 2020 semester.

Why are students not returning after Thanksgiving?

Many higher education institutions have made this decision to prevent the spread of the virus after students have travelled and then returned to the campus. UAB considered public health recommendations and made this decision to protect the health and safety of our university community.

When will UAB resume athletics?

UAB student athletes have returned to campus per NCAA guidelines. UAB Athletics expects to compete in all sports as scheduled for the 2020-21 season and will follow the guidelines as set by the NCAA.

How will student organizations work this fall?

UAB is working on a plan to communicate with registered student organizations a way in which they can keep their programs virtual, or keep the tenets and parameters we have for social distancing. Parameters include maintaining six feet of distance between all participants, making sure that all events are registered through Engage, following the facility guidelines and keeping indoor events to 10 or less participants. We expect most registered student organizations will still be virtual.

When will students be able to get their One Card?

The university is determining the best process for students to access their One Cards. Once a final plan is ready, details will be posted on the One Stop website.

Student Health FAQs

Is Student Health open?

Student Health will remain open, but anyone who suspects that they might be contagious should call first — (205) 934-3580 during regular hours or (205) 934-3411 after hours to page the provider on call. The Student Counseling Services facility is closed to students; counselors are working remotely. Counselors will not be providing counseling sessions, but will be providing transition plans, case management, referral, and monitoring for students who are current clients.

Students with scheduled appointments will be contacted by their counselor and should send a portal message to their counselor verifying the number they want to be reached. Students may cancel scheduled appointments through the patient portal.

Students requesting assistance may call the office at 205-934-5816 during business hours (8:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.) and will be able to leave a voice mail. Calls will be returned by a staff member the same or next business day.

Students experiencing a mental health emergency or crisis should follow the steps listed here.

Students may continue to send portal messages to their counselors. Counselors will respond within 24 business hours. Portal messaging is not for crisis or emergency situations.

Will UAB provide COVID-19 testing and will students have to pay for testing?

Yes, we will provide free testing to every student, new and returning, prior to coming back to campus. Most likely it will be in the 7- to 14-day period before the return. And with a negative test, along with completing the appropriate safety training and enrolling in the Healthcheck, then students can come back to campus. There will be sentinel testing for our employees and our students.

For more information on UAB's COVID-19 testing, click here.

I am feeling very ill and am waiting on my test results. What should I do if my symptoms get worse?

If you're feeling worse, you have a few options to consider:

  • First of all, go straight to the hospital if you're having difficulty breathing, are feeling confused or your family/friends see that you're not acting normally, if you're having new, severe or persistent chest pain, if you're unable to keep down fluids, if you're having increase in coughing blood, or if you have little to no urine output.
  • If you're not having the symptoms above, but are concerned and would like to speak with a provider, please schedule a virtual video chat visit with UAB Student Health by calling (205) 934-3580. In the near future, these visits may be web-bookable, but for now please call. If it is after normal business hours (5:00 p.m. - 8:00 a.m.), please call the on-call provider at (205) 934-3411. Ask for Student Health Provider on call and you will receive a call back within 30 minutes.

I’m a student who contacted student health about my symptoms and testing. What is the follow up? How will I know what to do after being diagnosed?

If you were evaluated and tested through Student Health, your provider will give you details on when to expect your test results, as well as self-care at home. Furthermore, a nurse will be contacting you regularly to follow up on your symptoms and test results. If you were tested at another location, that location will contact you with test results, but if you let us know you were tested, a nurse can still contact you to check in regularly.

I’m a student who has COVID-19 symptoms, but can’t afford to go the doctor. What are my options?

All students, regardless of insurance coverage, have access to Student Health Services at no additional charge. Students can have an in-person or virtual visit with no copay or out of pocket charge for the visit. If you need testing, we can discuss with you the various options and cost of each.

How do I notify UAB if I learn of someone who tested positive and the university doesn’t know?

If a student or employee tells you they think they may have COVID-19 or has already tested positive, instruct them to go/stay home and to call Student Health Services (205-934-2580) if a student or to call Employee Health (205-934-3675) if they are an employee. Student and Employee Health professionals who work closely with the health department, will be able to assess risk and provide guidance. You do not need to try to determine who may have been exposed. You should contact your Human Resources partner or HR Executive Director Earlisha Williams (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 205-934-3848) for guidance.

What if someone is diagnosed? How will I know if I was in contact?

The health and safety of the campus community is our top priority. There is a process in place to make appropriate assessments and notifications to those who may have been exposed to a confirmed case of COVID-19. How the University needs to respond will depend on the circumstances. In accordance with health department protocols and federal privacy laws, notifications and/or details will be determined based on who needs to know for health reasons.

Alabama and Jefferson County are experiencing community spread of COVID-19. UAB has taken proactive steps to fight the pandemic (e.g., online/alternative classes, limited business operations, aggressive social distancing), but we expect people to have questions about how they may be notified if they were in contact with someone who tested positive as testing increases in Birmingham. Based on requirements regarding student, employee, and patient privacy, we are limited in what health information can be shared, but UAB is working closely with the Alabama Department of Public Health and Jefferson County Department of Health.

The health department gathers and provides verified tests, contacts the case, determines the contacts at risk, and notifies them of what to do. If an individual is determined to have been in close contact with someone who has been diagnosed, ADPH — or an official designee (which could be UAB Student or Employee Health, or Human Resources) — will contact that individual to discuss next steps.

What should I do if I was potentially exposed to someone with confirmed COVID-19?

If you think you have been exposed to someone with laboratory-confirmed COVID-19, follow these steps to monitor your health to avoid spreading the disease to others if you get sick. Stay home except to get medical care.

  • Separate yourself from other people and animals in your home.
  • Call ahead before visiting your doctor.
  • Wear a face mask when you are around other people.
  • Cover your coughs and sneezes.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Avoid sharing personal household items like dishes, cups, towels, and bedding.
  • Clean all “high-touch” surfaces every day with a household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Monitor your symptoms and let your healthcare provider know you are experiencing symptoms that may be related to COVID-19.
  • If you are told to go to the doctor’s office, wear a face mask before entering the facility.

If you get sick with fever, cough or shortness of breath (even if your symptoms are very mild), you likely have COVID-19. You should isolate yourself at home and away from other people. If you have any of the following conditions that may increase your risk for a serious infection—age 60 years or older, are pregnant, or have medical conditions—contact your physician’s office and tell them that you were exposed to someone with COVID-19. They may want to monitor your health more closely or test you for COVID-19.

If you do not have a high-risk condition but want medical advice, call your healthcare provider and tell them you were exposed to someone with COVID-19. Your healthcare provider can help you decide if you need to be evaluated in person. There are currently no medications to treat COVID-19.

If you have a medical emergency and need to call 911, notify the dispatch personnel that you may have been exposed to COVID-19. If possible, put on a face mask before emergency medical services arrive or immediately after they arrive.

Information for UAB faculty, staff, hospital employees and students:

  • UAB Students should call UAB Student Health Services at (205) 934-3580
  • UAB employees (faculty, staff and hospital) should call UAB Employee Health at (205) 934-3675 from 6:30 a.m. - 5:00 p.m., Monday-Friday. After hours and on weekends, call the UAB Call Center at (205) 934-3411 and ask them to page the needlestick/exposure nurse on-call.
  • UAB Employee Health will offer testing for providers and staff exhibiting possible COVID-19 symptoms. If an employee has been exposed to the virus, or if that employee has fever or symptoms that make them concerned they may have the virus, they can call the UAB Employee Health Triage Line at (205) 934.3675 for guidance on whether to seek further evaluation.

What should I do if I am suspected to or confirmed to have COVID-19?

If you are sick and have been diagnosed with COVID-19 or suspected to have COVID-19 because you have been exposed to someone with COVID-19, follow these steps to help prevent the disease from spreading to people in your home and community.

What should I do if I have symptoms of COVID19 and have not been around anyone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19?

If you have a fever, cough, or shortness of breath but have not been around anyone you know has COVID-19, follow these steps to help prevent your infection from spreading to people in your home and community.

What distance and telemental health services and resources are available to UAB students?

  • Student Mental health Support During COVID-19: UAB offers a wide array of options to support student mental health. For the most current information about services and resources to support student mental health, please visit the Student Counseling Services website.
  • TAO (Therapy Assistance Online): Free and available to all UAB students. Through TAO’s completely self-directed, self-help app and online program, students are provided an opportunity to learn stress management, mindfulness skills, problem-solving and strategies to avoid rumination and develop more helpful thinking patterns. To sign up, go to thepath.taoconnect.org/.
  • Crisis and Emergency Resources: Students who are experiencing suicidal thoughts or another mental health emergency should call 911 or go to the UAB Emergency Department (ED), the UAB Highlands ED, or the nearest ED for immediate assistance. You may also access additional emergency and community resources.
  • Distance Counseling Services:
    • UAB Student Counseling Services is closed to in-person appointments during the UAB Limited Business Model period; however, counselors are providing counseling services remotely.
    • If you are a current SCS client with a scheduled appointment in the next two weeks, your counselor has reached out to you by phone and/or patient portal. If you need to communicate with your counselor or cancel a scheduled appointment, use your patient portal.
    • Other students requesting assistance may call our main line at (205) 934-5816 and leave a message and we will return your call within one business day.
    • Additional Distance Counseling Services are available.
  • Hotlines and 24-7 Support:
    • Emotional Support Help Line for COVID-19: (866) 342-6892. Free access to specially trained mental health specialists to support people experiencing anxiety or stress around COVID-19.
    • National Crisis Text Line: Text “UAB” to 741-741.
    • National Suicide Prevention Hotline: 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255)
    • Birmingham Crisis Center Crisis Line: (205) 323-7777
  • Mental Health Apps: Numerous mental health apps exist to support and encourage positive mental health practices. Many of these are free and available for download on your device.

Summer 2020 Semester FAQs

Will there be any in-person classes at UAB for the Summer 2020 semester?

No. As part of UAB’s planning to safeguard our campus community, we have decided that there will be no in-person/on-site classes for the summer semester. This includes courses offered in the Summer 14-Week Session, Summer May Session, Summer 10-Week Session, Summer A Session (7-Week), and Summer B Session (7-Week). All instruction will continue to be delivered remotely using the most effective tools available. Students should work with their instructors to access materials and utilize resources online and other remote teaching and learning resources.

What about clinical, studio, student teaching, and other out-of-classroom programs?

Policies regarding clinical experiences, studio-based courses, student-teacher programs, and other specific programs will continue to be formulated based on guidance from the state of Alabama, host institutions, and the appropriate academic departments and governing agencies. Instructors in these programs will communicate with students. Instructors have been encouraged to continue their efforts to provide alternative online experiences.

What about Education Abroad trips?

All Education Abroad trips have been cancelled for the May and Summer semesters.

What about mentored research in labs?

Graduate Students and Postdoctoral Fellows

With limited exceptions approved in advance, there are already no on-campus research activities at UAB for graduate students or postdoctoral fellows. Examples of exceptions include on-campus laboratory studies needed for a thesis or dissertation defense during the Spring or Summer 2020 semesters, and for completion of studies for postdoctoral fellows who are within three months of the end of an appointment or fellowship funding. In either of these cases, and until further notice, the research must not require interventions or interactions with human subjects. Please consult the guidelines governing, and the approval process for, the continuation of graduate student or postdoctoral fellow research at the website of the Office of the Vice President for Research. In addition to adhering to this guidance, researchers must follow any additional School/College-specific directives.

Undergraduates

For undergraduate students, all on-campus, lab-based research experiences are cancelled for the Summer 2020 semester. Please see separate Q & As on this topic at the website of the Office of the Vice President for Research.

Will the academic calendar for Summer 2020 semester remain the same?

The academic calendar dates for the Summer 2020 semester will remain the same, including the separate calendars followed in the professional schools (Medicine, Dentistry, and Optometry).

Will there be any in-person commencement ceremonies for the Summer 2020 semester, usually held in August?

No, we are sorry to report that we will not have any in-person commencement ceremonies for the Summer 2020 semester, because we cannot be certain that we can safeguard the health of attendees. We are very disappointed to have to take this action. We do, however, plan to have “virtual ceremonies,” which will be video compilations of messages from campus leaders, student government leaders, and clips from graduates.

There will be a separate virtual graduate (masters and doctoral students) as well as a virtual undergraduate ceremony, that will air on Facebook, Instagram TV (IGTV) and YouTube during the times that the ceremonies would have otherwise taken place.

Summer 2020 graduates are encouraged to send a short video sharing their favorite UAB memories via Instagram DM @exploreuab or email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. by July 15 for inclusion in the virtual undergraduate and graduate ceremonies Aug. 14-15.

Students will also have the opportunity to “walk” in future in-person ceremonies. The registration link to sign up to walk in a future ceremony will be available approximately 6 weeks prior to the commencement date.

Please refer to the UAB Commencement Website for additional FAQs and the latest information regarding commencement activities.

What will be the grading method for Summer 2020 semester?

There will still be an option for students to elect Pass/Fail grading for the Summer 2020 semester. In general, the same policies for grading, withdrawals, and Incomplete grades will remain in effect for the Summer 2020 semester as are in place for the Spring 2020 semester. Students and instructors will receive further guidance on the dates for students to make this election and other specifics as soon as possible.

How do students get books for their summer courses?

UAB Bookstore is open. In order to keep patrons and staff safe, we have implemented the following:

  • social distancing measures
  • rigorous cleaning protocols
  • sneeze guards at checkout
  • contactless payment
  • reduced occupancy
  • customer and employee mask requirements

Curbside pickup is also available. Contact the UAB Bookstore with your request.

The Bookstore is accessible 24/7 via shopuab.com. The website allows students to order required course materials, school supplies, and Blazer gear. Free ground shipping for all orders will be provided for the duration of the summer semester. Bookstore staff will personally address any questions or issues before, during, and after students order course materials and/or products. Students will be able to purchase directly from the Bookstore website using a credit card, their Blazer Bucks and financial aid. Financial aid currently includes GI Dependents, Vocational Rehabilitation, and VA only.

Due to a direct partnership with a leading used textbook vendor, students may receive multiple packages from one Bookstore order. This partnership allows the Bookstore to provide students access to a larger inventory of used textbooks and rentals with faster service. All packages ship for free. The Bookstore is offering a Price Match policy. Contact the bookstore for assistance.

How to Order your Course Materials Online through Blazer Net:

  • Login to BlazerNet.
  • Click “Registration”.
  • Click “Purchase Your Books Now”.
  • Your schedule will automatically load into the Bookstore website and your list of course materials will appear.
  • Add the materials in the desired format you would like to order to your cart and then check out using the payment method of your choice.
  • Books will ship directly to you.

How to order your course materials directly from the website:

  • Go to shopuab.com.
  • Click on “Textbooks”.
  • Select the Term (Summer 2020), Department, Course, and Section from the drop-down menu for all of your courses.
  • Click “Find Materials”
  • Select your desired course materials and format and add them to the cart.
  • Check out using the payment method of your choice.
  • Materials will ship directly to you.

Fall 2020 Semester FAQs

Will UAB be open for the Fall 2020 Semester?

The University of Alabama System is planning a safe return this fall with a hybrid model – a course delivery system which, because of social distancing precautions, requires a combination of both in-person instruction and remote instruction. To promote the health and safety of the campus community, adjustments have been made to the fall semester schedule:

  • Fall semester hybrid classes will start Monday, Aug. 24, 2020.
  • Fall semester hybrid classes will end Friday, Nov. 20, for the Thanksgiving break.
  • Students will not return to campus after Thanksgiving break.
    Exceptions can be granted for students based on work, research or clinical responsibilities, and accommodations can be requested for international students or others who do not have alternate living arrangements.
  • Classes during the week of Nov. 30-Dec. 4, as well as final exams during the week of Dec. 7-11, will be conducted remotely.
    Coursework engagement during these weeks is necessary to accommodate SACSCOC accrediting standard requirements for credit granted for coursework.

Click here to view UAB's phased re-entry plan.

What are my parking options for the fall semester?

Beginning 12:01 a.m. July 1, students will be able to purchase parking permits for the 2020-21 academic year via the parking portal; purchasing initially was postponed due to the COVID-19 pandemic. A full list of student permit options is online at uab.edu/transportation.

Why are students not returning after Thanksgiving?

Many higher education institutions have made this decision to prevent the spread of the virus after students have travelled and then returned to the campus. UAB considered public health recommendations and made this decision to protect the health and safety of our university community.

What is a hybrid class? How will it work?

The course format allows for flexibility in using remote and in-person learning. Essentially, it is a blend of in-class instruction and either synchronous or asynchronous remote viewing of the same content delivery. Given the social distancing requirements dictated by the health and safety precautions implemented to address the current COVID-19 pandemic, a hybrid delivery model was seen as an optimal choice. The model also allows one to easily and quickly shift to completely remote delivery should circumstances surrounding the pandemic, or any other natural disaster, dictate such a transition.

Utilizing this format allows students to experience both in-class and remote instruction. Both incoming freshmen and returning students across the nation highly value in-class instruction, more so than traditional face-to-face or remote instruction. This still allows the necessary health and safety precautions dictated by the pandemic to be implemented. The basic idea is to have 50% of students in Tuesday-Thursday classes and 33% of students in Monday-Wednesday-Friday classes be in class on a given day. In this format, the instructor will present his/her class lecture which will be captured by new camera systems being installed in designated classrooms across campus. The video feed of the in-class presentation will be available synchronously to the remaining registered students as well as stored and available on Canvas for asynchronous viewing. Students will alternate in-class and remote options in a way yet to be determined. The instructional format is dependent on the objectives of a specific course and the ability to socially distance.

What will classes look like in the fall?

There are four kinds of classes in terms of delivery method that you could be experiencing.

  • In-person face-to-face classes. These are typically courses that are discussion sections, labs or performance-based courses that are small in size where we can socially distance and allow for a safe quality education.
  • Hybrid courses. These courses will have a combination of in-person instruction as well as remote instruction. For example, if you are taking a Tuesday/Thursday class, students would alternate. On Tuesday you might be in class and half of the class will be in that class remotely. And on Thursday it switches around and the other half comes to class in the location on campus and you might be in the remote location at that point of time. UAB is exploring very creative options to make sure students are able to socially distance within the classroom. Having half of the students in the classroom at a time allows us to be able to accomplish that in many of our classrooms and we anticipate that a significant number of the classes will be in this hybrid format.
  • Remote instruction. This is where a course is entirely delivered remotely. These are typically going to be classes that might be large lecture courses where we cannot appropriately social distance. Usually a remote class is very synchronous, meaning at the same time all the students and the instructors are available and hearing the information.
  • Online courses, known as Q courses. Some of you may have registered for these courses in the past. They are courses that were designed to be entirely online and tend to be primarily asynchronous so that you are not necessarily in the same location — same place at the same time.

The four options give us a lot of flexibility in order to continue to deliver quality instruction for you in the fall.

Will Fall 2020 also have a pass/fail option?

We anticipate that the same adjustments that were made for the Spring 2020 and Summer 2020 semesters as a result of COVID-19 for grading (student option to choose pass/fail grading in most courses), course withdrawals and incomplete grades will continue for the Fall 2020 semester.

For the mixed online-live classes, how is it going to be decided which students will be in the online session versus the live days? Will it be possible for students to express a preference based on their schedules?

To clarify, the hybrid courses would not be online. A hybrid course is a combination of in-person and remote instruction. Remote is focusing more on synchronous learning, as opposed to online learning, which focuses on asynchronous learning.

UAB continues to work out the process for identifying which students will be on campus on which days. UAB is trying to limit the number of in-person exposure hours any given student has. Univesrity leadership is working together to finalize a plan for hybrid courses.

I'm currently a UAB student. I wanted to know if there is an option to take classes that you've registered for online if you do not feel fully comfortable attending in-person classes in August?

There are multiple options. There are remote courses and online courses. If you have a medical reason that you cannot be in class, then we would encourage you to reach out to Disability Support Services.

Each student should look at the schedule to see how classes are being offered. Some classes may be difficult to offer in an entirely remote or online enviroment. For example, classes that have labs, although we've been very creative about different kinds of options that are available.

UAB is currently working with each of the schools to have the schedules up soon to let you know how each class will be offered in the fall semester.

How will students exactly know which type of class they are registered for? Hybrid, remote, etc.?

Currently, UAB is gathering information from each one of the schools. The destinction will appear on the schedule once it is available. Online classes have been identified in the schedule and carry the Q designation.

UAB is modifying classrooms to accomodate the number of students that are in the class and can socially distance. There will be some location changes that will appear on the schedule. We are trying to provide as much information to you so that you can look and see what kind of course each class will end up being.

Could you explain the protocol about how classrooms and common areas will be cleaned?

The emphasis we will be placed on commonly touched items: doorknobs, restrooms — commonly touched surfaces where hand-to-hand transmission could occur. We also intend to provide hand sanitizer, wipes and spray disinfectant in the classrooms. We have some large-scale, heavy-duty cleaning apparatus that we will use a couple of times a day in the classrooms. UAB encourages students to use a process referred to as wiping in and wiping out. Students will clean your desk and workstation as you go in and clean it as you leave. Supplies will be provided to everyone with additional cleaning regimens in between.

How will UAB ensure that students that test positive during the course of the semester are given time to recover without falling so far behind on their schoolwork that a medical drop would be necessary?

Students in this situation should register for COVID-19-related academic adjustments through Disability Support Services. Faculty will be flexible in offering students time away from class when they are ill and time to make up work. Of course, just like with any other illness, faculty may ask for documentation. We anticipate that the same adjustments that were made for the Spring 2020 and Summer 2020 semesters as a result of COVID-19 for grading (student option to choose pass/fail grading in most courses), course withdrawals and Incomplete grades will continue for the Fall 2020 semester.

If you test positive, how will you still be able to do schoolwork in courses that cannot be completed remotely, such as lab courses?

Faculty are providing flexibility in completing coursework in the case of illness. Students in this situation should register for COVID-19-related academic adjustments through Disability Support Services.

How will professors be directed to handle situations when students are sick and are unable to come to class? In the past, professors have counted excused absences towards our total number of allowed absences each semester. Will that change with the extra precautions we are taking in light of COVID-19?

Students in this situation should register with Disability Support Services. All COVID-19-related illnesses will be excused.

Will professors be permitted to take an attendance grade?

Yes, but all COVID-19-related illnesses will be excused. Students concerned about their attendance as a result of COVID-19 should register with Disability Support Services.

What are students expected to do if they have back-to-back hybrid classes and are supposed to be in person for the first class, then online for the second class?

Students who foresee a pattern of difficulties in arriving to class on time should consult with their instructors to see if the hybrid delivery model can offer solutions. For instance, a student with back-to-back classes in different buildings might opt to do the first class synchronously on Tuesday and the second one synchronously on Thursday. (In a situation such as this one, an instructor and student might need to communicate with another instructor to resolve issues.)

Will the add/drop deadline for classes be extended considering the circumstances?

Yes, we anticipate making the same sort of adjustments for these deadlines as we made for the Summer 2020 semester.

Has UAB canceled student-related travel for the Fall 2020 semester?

UAB continues to monitor the worldwide novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic to prioritize health and safety while also ensuring delivery of quality education and experiences. Due to the continual effect of the pandemic, the university is suspending all UAB student-related international travel through December 31, 2020 as a result of the US Department of State Level 4 Global Health Advisory-Do Not Travel.

The Office of Education Abroad will continue to identify future opportunities for students to study internationally. Students are asked to work with their academic advisors to identify alternative courses to ensure their academic progress. These resources are available to help students stay current with the university’s response to COVID-19. We will continue to keep our campus updated on new developments.

For additional questions regarding the Fall 2020 Semester, including labs, specific course questions and Disability Support Services information, click here.

Grading FAQs

Do I have to move ANY of my courses to a Pass/Fail grading method?

No. You have the option to move as many or as few (or none) of your classes to P/F, assuming the option is available. The default grading method will be the normal letter grade method and we encourage you to continue taking courses for a letter grade where possible. Where we can, we are providing a Pass/Fail option in case there are circumstances and/or challenges students are encountering related to the ongoing pandemic that might make a Pass/Fail option a better option. Post-baccalaureate students, for example, will most likely be better able to compete for future positions if they have letter grades.

How should students proceed if they are on academic probation or suspension?

A P grade in a course will hold their place for academic eligibility purposes.

Where should I go to get my questions answered about the Pass/Fail grading option available for courses during the Summer 2020 semesters?

In addition to these FAQs, you can also find additional FAQs at Academics website. You can also ask your advisor about the implications of selecting the Pass/Fail grading method for a particular course.

Do I have to select the Pass/Fail grading method for each of my courses individually?

Yes, if students are not remaining with the default Letter Grade method for any of their courses, they must select the Pass/Fail grading method for each course individually.

Is my decision to choose a Pass/Fail grading scheme for a particular course reversible?

No, once a student selects the option for s Pass/Fail grading method for a particular course, that decision is not reversible regardless of their performance on remaining assignments or final exams.

When can I choose to opt out of the letter grade method and select a Pass/Fail grading method?

Students can opt out of the default letter grade method and select the Pass/Fail method during the last 14 days of a course in whichever summer session it is offered: Summer 14-Week Session, Summer May Session, Summer 10-Week Session, Summer A Session (7-Week), and Summer B Session (7-Week). This 14-day window ends on the last day of classes for that particular summer session.

Where can I find more information?

For more information on grading and communicating with faculty, visit the UAB Students Questions and Answers page.

Can I opt for Pass/Fail grading for just part of the semester in a class, but regular letter grading for the other part?

No. The Pass/Fail option only applies to the final course grade, not for individual assignments within a course, unless a Pass/Fail option is explicitly indicated for a given assignment on the syllabus.

Buildings, Housing, and Dining FAQs

Additional FAQs about buildings, housing and dining are available here.

Can I access residence halls?

All residence halls are closed.

Now that we know on-campus instruction will not take place through the summer semester, we can begin to make decisions and provide guidance to allow students to move out of their residence hall rooms. We are formulating a plan now to allow a systematic and safe way for students to retrieve their belongings and move out. This plan will be shared in a separate communication directly to residential students. Students, please DO NOT RETURN TO CAMPUS at this time. It remains vitally important to aggressively promote social distancing and "flatten the curve." Students should email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if an extreme hardship or circumstance arises. Students are not authorized to return to campus outside of this plan, and any who show up without authorization will not be accommodated.

If there are academic materials, medication or other items left in the residence halls that are needed during break, please contact housing at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Students still on campus living in a residence hall:

  • If you have another place to live and can leave the residence hall, PLEASE LEAVE CAMPUS AS SOON AS POSSIBLE but no later than the end of the day Tuesday, March 17.
  • If you do not have another place to live, please contact Student Housing now at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for guidance and assistance. We will follow up with you as soon as possible.
  • We have consulted at length with COVID-19 experts. For safety reasons, only students who do not have a place to go (e.g., students with an exceptional hardship or international students) can be allowed to stay in a residence hall.
  • Take any essential belongings and school-related resources you will need with you.

For the health and safety of our residents, all overnight visitation in the residence halls is immediately suspended until further notice.

What are my dining options?

Campus Dining

Commons on the Green

Open 7 days a week
Brunch: 10:00 AM-1:00 PM
Dinner: 4:00 pm-6:30 pm

Beginning May 2nd, all guests will need to pay upon entry for their access into the Commons on the Green.

Meal plans are available to students, faculty, and staffand can be selected online at uab.edu/mealplans. BlazerBucks are also available to anyone with an active ONE Card. They can be added online via credit card or payroll deduction at uab.edu/blazerbucks.

During this time, Campus Dining will be a cashless facility and will only be able to accept payment with debit, credit, and ONE Cards.

Campus Dining continue to observe $5 Fridays for UAB Faculty & Staff and $5 Mindful Mondays for Students

THE FOLLOWING CAMPUS LOCATIONS ARE CLOSED: The C-Store, The Den, Einstein Bros. Bagels, Starbucks at Sterne, Starbucks at Hill, WOW Cafe, The Grid, Jamba Juice, Sandella’s, Full Moon, Mein Bowl, Panera.

Blazer Kitchen

Blazer Kitchen will be distributing bags for students who have food insecurities. Blazer Kitchen will continue to provide food to students in need via a drive thru process at UAB Medical Towers (1717 11th Ave S) each Wednesday between the hours of 12:00 p.m. – 6:00 p.m.

If you anticipate picking up a prepacked food bag, text (205) 834-2895 with a picture of the front and back of your UAB ONE Card and a description and tag number of the car that will be picking up your food or indicate if you will be walking or taking the bus. Information will be kept on file through the duration of this situation, so only one text is required. If you have not shopped with Blazer Kitchen since July 2019, online information forms should be completed. Forms are in English or Spanish.

Students and employees who are quarantined due to COVID-19 exposure or diagnosis will be allowed to send someone to pick up a food bag given the above procedures are followed. If you have any questions please call (205) 834-2895.

What is the status of the Hill Student Center and Campus Recreation Center?

Hill Student Center (including all dining options other than Blazer Kitchen) and the Campus Recreation Center will remain closed until further notice. The campus bookstore in the Hill Student Center will remain closed until further notice. The bookstore will continue to accept orders online for delivery, but students might experience significantly longer shipping times.

Will residence halls be open during the Summer 2020 semester?

No, residence halls will remain closed during the Summer 2020 semester. If a student does not have another place to live (e.g., students with an exceptional hardship or international students), they should contact Student Housing now at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. for guidance and assistance. They will follow up with you as soon as possible.

Will Student Health be open during the Summer 2020 semester?

Student Health will remain open, but anyone who suspects that they might be contagious should call first — (205) 934-3580 during regular hours or (205) 934-3411 after hours to page the Student Health provider on call. UAB Student Counseling Services is closed to in-person appointments during the time that UAB is operating under the limited business operations model.

However, counselors will continue to provide counseling services remotely. Click here for a list of all telemental health services that are available to support students online and from a distance.

Will residence halls be open in for the Fall 2020 semester?

Despite our nation's efforts to slowly reopen our cities and economies, COVID-19 continues to be a very real and serious threat to the health and safety of our community and will continue to be into the fall semester as well. As a result, it is vital for us to implement strict protocols and practices within the residence halls to continue to keep you and your families as safe as possible.

  • All residence hall rooms, lobbies, lounges, and laundry rooms will be thoroughly cleaned, disinfected, and sanitized prior to opening for fall. Common area spaces (lobbies, lounges, laundry rooms, elevators) will be cleaned more frequently throughout the day during the year.
  • Residents will be required to complete an online COVID safety precaution training module and a contract addendum prior to arriving on campus to move in.
  • We anticipate that all residents – symptomatic or not – will be asked to be tested for COVID-19 before moving into the residence halls. More information will be provided as details and guidance are available.
  • Green Hall (our newest residence hall currently under construction) will not be completely open for operation until late Fall 2020; some students will have an opportunity to delay moving on campus until it is complete. If you would like to consider this option, please notify us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..
  • Rast and Blount Halls have private bedrooms and will be fully occupied this fall. Because the common areas will be used by up to four people, residents in these halls will be required to clean and disinfect their apartments weekly.
  • Students who require any special accommodations must register with Disability Student Services to provide the required documentation for housing accommodation requests. If you have not already started this process, we encourage you to do so as soon as possible. For more information, go to www.uab.edu/dss.
  • Residents will only be allowed limited personal belongings in the halls this fall - more details will follow.
  • VISITORS WILL NOT BE ALLOWED IN ANY UAB RESIDENCE HALL FOR THE ENTIRE FALL SEMESTER.
  • In-hall gatherings will be very limited and prohibited for groups larger than ten (10) people.
  • Lounges and lobbies will be restricted to ten (10) people or less, and 6 feet of separation between individuals must be maintained.
  • Face masks will be required in common areas and wearing them will be enforced.
  • No more than two residents on an elevator at a time – riders will face opposite walls with face masks in place.
  • Residents must notify Student Health should they experience any symptoms related to COVID-19.
  • Residents must self-isolate if they have COVID-related symptoms. Apartments designated for quarantine and isolation will be made available; residents will be required to temporarily relocate to those spaces until symptoms subside and Student Health clears them to return to their assigned residence hall.
  • UAB plans to make exposure notification technology available to anonymously alert individuals of possible exposure to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19.
  • Students will be required to complete a web-based health check assessment, and students may be asked to participate in voluntary, sentinel COVID-19 testing during the semester.

Information for Returning Residents

Students who wish to cancel their fall application may do so and will receive a full refund of all Fall 2020 housing application fees paid to date if we receive your request on or before July 1. A separate email will be sent with instructions upon your request. If you decide to cancel for the fall semester, we encourage you to consider returning to housing in the spring, as we hope to progress toward returning to more normal operation within Student Housing.

Please email us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if your plans have changed and you would like more information about the cancellation process.

Will shared spaces, like kitchens be open?

Protocols and practices for shared spaces in residence halls include:

  • Common kitchen or eating areas will remain open
  • Shared appliances can be used under these conditions:
    • Ice Machines must be automated to serve the ice, No “scoops” allowed for self-serve. If unable to retro-fit current machines, those will need to be disabled.
    • Discontinue use of water fountains except to dispense water to containers that is a touchless process.
    • Refrigerators, microwaves, coffee makers and other appliances are allowed with the following expectations:
    • Disinfecting wipes will be available and each user is expected to disinfect after each use.
  • Proper social distancing will be expected in shared spaces. The space will need to be controlled to facilitate social distancing, such as the number of chairs in a space, disinfectant wipes, sanitizer, etc.
  • Mask will be required except while eating.
  • Staff can enter the shared space long enough to use the shared space for immediate needs, while masked and then exit. In addition,eating areas should be limited to one person at a time.
  • Shared food or “pot luck” should be highly discouraged. For example, bringing in a box of donuts or baking a cake for all, should be discouraged.

What are my meal plan options? Will UAB meal plans be required? When can I select my meal plan?

A meal plan will be required. We are in the process of reviewing and modifying rates for Fall meal plans.

We anticipate having most of our food venues open, but final decisions are still being made with regard to which venues will be open. We are going to do our best to provide safe and quick service and will require students to wear face masks, remain socially distanced and plan their meals around their schedules to spread out our peak demand times throughout the day. We will provide touchless payment options with all card currencies as we are going cashless for the fall. We are also working on a plan to extend contact free pickup and delivery at all locations. If you have questions regarding dining or concerns please contact us at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Fall semester meal plan selection is open. Select your meal plan at uab.edu/mealplans.

Will campus buildings like the Rec Center, the libraries and the Student Center be open for the Fall semester?

Some buildings will reopen with social distancing and masking guidelines, while others are still being decided upon.

The libraries will be open with social distancing and masking requirements. UAB will continue to clean those facilities as we do others.

The Rec Center remains closed, but UAB is working to reopen the facility once it is safe to do so.

What are the rules for social distancing within the Commons and other places for eating?

UAB is reducing the amount of furniture in most areas where students congregate. That will include the dining locations, lobbies, and the lounges within the residence halls. Students should adhere to UAB's guideline of no more than 10 students in a gathering at one time. In addition to that are required to wear face masks while on campus. If you are re in line for dining, remain six feet apart while you wait on food. There will be no self-service of food. All food will be prepared behind stations. Grab and go will be another option, so that if there are not tables available students can grab food, leave the Hill Center or the Commons and eat on the Green and enjoy some fresh air.

When will move-in take place?

Move-in will take place over five days in August, from the 19th through the 23rd. More details will follow with specifics. Please begin making plans to bring a limited amount of your belongings.

Will housing rates be adjusted for this semester?

Housing rates will be adjusted in coordination with the reduced fall semester. More details will follow about rates soon.

Financial FAQs

When an unprecedented and quickly evolving disruptive event occurs, it can be difficult to have all the answers right away. The decision by the UA System and UAB to move to online/alternate learning and limited business operations is a difficult but crucial response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic in our communities. The frustration and stress that this pandemic is causing are not unique to UAB or higher education and we are committed to answering questions and supporting students in the midst of these extraordinary circumstances. We will continue to make decisions with the safety of our students in mind and ask for your patience as the situation continues to change.

What are the university’s plans to refund students?

Housing, Dining, and Parking will all offer refunds prorated to applicable students based upon residence hall, meal plan, or parking permit type. Each affected student will be contacted directly with more information about their specific refund. Students with a refund will be able to choose from these options:

  • Receive a prorated refund; OR
  • Apply your refund to your Fall 2020 student bill; students who elect this option will receive an additional credit of 10% of the refund amount. For example, under this option with a $500 refund, an additional 10% or $50 for a total of $550 would be applied to your Fall 2020 student bill; OR
  • Donate your refund to the Student Government Association COVID-19 Emergency Grant.

Refunds will be applied to accounts with outstanding balances before distribution of any remaining refund balance. Students with UAB scholarships that paid for housing, dining, or parking are not eligible for refunds. If you have not done so already, please go to BlazerNET to securely set up direct deposit. This way, refunds can be delivered quickly when the time comes. To access this information on BlazerNET:

  • Click the Student Resources tab
  • Select the Student Accounting channel
  • Click the link labeled Manage Direct Deposits

Other updates will be posted at uab.edu/coronavirus and offices as they become available.

What can students do to ensure their money is refunded as soon as decisions are made?

Please go to BlazerNET to securely set up direct deposit if you have not already. This way, reimbursements can be delivered quickly when the time comes. From BlazerNET:

  • Click the Student Resources tab
  • Access the Student Accounting channel
  • Click the link labeled Manage Direct Deposits

Please keep in mind that if refunds are issued, and you have a balance on your student account, the refund will be applied towards your outstanding balance. This applies to both housing and meal plan proration.

My study abroad program has been cancelled. Will I be refunded?

UAB Education Abroad refunded any fees paid directly to our office, including the admin fee and faculty led program fees, via original payment source.If you applied for summer 2020 scholarships, we encourage you to consider applying for a future term, as your effort this summer will not go unnoticed.

I am experiencing financial difficulties — what can I do?

The Undergraduate Student Government Association reallocated $15,000 that was originally intended for now-canceled travel grants and programming for students. The Division of Student Affairs matched that amount, and Graduate Student Government contributed, for a total of $33,000. The Student Government Association COVID-19 Emergency Grant was born.

Currently enrolled students, including undergraduate, graduate and professional, who need emergency aid due to unexpected expenses caused by the ongoing COVID-19 situation are eligible. To apply, students should submit the COVID-19 Emergency Grant application via a Maxient online form.

The submission must also include documentation supporting the need for emergency aid, such as a bill, letter of delinquency, invoice or bank statement. Students are eligible for a maximum of $500, to be distributed using wire/direct deposit to an account provided by the student.

Will I be charged fees (e.g., lab fees, studio fees) even though my classes are taught remotely in the summer?

Yes. Fees vary by major and support the faculty/staff providing alternate ways of delivering this instruction as well as the influx of resources necessary to convert this instruction to alternative formats to ensure that you can continue to make progress on your degree. In addition, in-state students are paying the tuition charged for in-person instruction rather than the higher online instruction rate for classes that are typically delivered online.

What tuition rate will be charged for summer online courses?

If your course was originally scheduled to be online, you will pay the online rate. If your course was originally scheduled to be taught in person, you will continue to pay the standard tuition rate. In-state students will pay the in-state rate and out-of-state students will pay the out of state tuition rate.

What emergency funds are available to students?

Emergency funding is available from Financial Aid as part of the CARES Act. These funds include the COVID-19 Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) and the Student COVID-19 Emergency Aid coordinated by Student Conduct & Outreach.

Click here to learn more about emergency funds available to students.

What is the COVID-19 Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF)?

HEERF is a fund coordinated by Financial Aid. Funds provide emergency funding to eligible students to help cover some expenses related to the disruption of campus operations because of COVID-19.

Students who were enrolled at UAB for the Spring 2020 semester and meet Title IV eligibility requirements are eligible for this funding. UAB is awarding the funding based on a student’s Expected Family Contribution (EFC), with awards ranging from $50 to $900.

  • Title IV eligibility requirements include U.S. citizenship (or eligible noncitizen); valid Social Security number; registration with Selective Service (for male students); and enrollment in a degree or certificate program (in the Spring 2020 semester).
  • Not all students are eligible; this includes international students, undocumented students, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and students who were enrolled exclusively in online programs in the Spring 2020 semester.

To receive these funds, students must certify that they have incurred expenses related to the disruption due to COVID-19. You can complete this certification through this online form now through June 1.

In order to determine Title IV eligibility, students must also have a Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) form for the 2019-2020 academic year on file in order to be considered. You may fill out the FAFSA form now if you have not already done so by going to this page on studentaid.gov.

Click here to learn more about the COVID-19 HEERF.

What is the Student COVID-19 Emergency Aid?

The Student COVID-19 Emergency Aid is coordinated by Student Conduct & Outreach. Funds provide emergency aid to assist students in managing unexpected expenses(s) caused by the ongoing COVID-19 situation.

To receive the emergency aid, individuals must meet the following eligibility requirements:

  • Currently enrolled student (undergraduate, graduate, professional)
    • You must be enrolled in the term in which your application is submitted (e.g., enrolled in summer classes if submitting at that time). If you do enroll in summer, you can reapply.
  • Need for emergency aid due to an unexpected expense(s) caused by the ongoing COVID-19 situation
  • Submission of documentation supporting the need for emergency aid (e.g., bill, letter of delinquency, invoice, bank statement)

Eligibility is not tied to Expected Family Contribution (EFC) or Title IV requirements.

  • International students, undocumented students, Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) and students who are enrolled exclusively in online programs are eligible to apply.
  • The maximum amount an approved student can receive is $500. The amount dispersed will be determined based upon the demonstrated need.

To apply, complete the online form.

I hope this helps understand the differences in the programs and the eligibility requirements. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact Student Conduct & Outreach at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 205-975-9509. For specific information about HEERF, contact UAB One Stop Student Services at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or 205-934-4300.

Click here to learn more about emergency funds available to students.

Will there be an adjustment to out-of-state fees for students who are taking classes online?

If the course was originally scheduled to be online, students will pay the online rate. If your course is delivered as hybrid, in person or remote, students will continue to pay the standard tuition rate. In-state students will pay the in-state rate and out-of-state students will pay the out of state tuition rate. The differential between in and out of state tuition reflect that in state students and their families also contribute through their state taxes to higher education institutions.

Will tuition still be the same price if some classes have moved to online?

There's a distinction between remote courses and online courses. Online courses are the Q courses. Those were designed to be offered online and the pricing reflects that. It's asynchronous kind of delivery. Remote courses will be offered at the regular rate as UAB did in the spring.

UAB continues to provide resources to students as we convert courses to remote or hybrid formats. We are installing cameras into the classrooms so that if you are in the section at a point in time where you are not in class you still can see the instructor, interact with the instructor and participate in the conversation.

UAB recommended and the UA System Board of Trustees approved no increase in tuition, so tuition rates for both in-state and out-of-state students will remain the same as they were for the last academic year.

If you get COVID-19 and your grades drop because of it, will it affect your scholarships or will there be an exemption for this year?

The Office of Undergraduate Scholarships will review each case on an individual basis.

Online & Remote Learning FAQs

What do I need for remote learning?

Learning remotely requires access to internet and a computer, laptop, tablet, or other device. In some courses, you may be required to have additional software, a webcam, etc.

What should I do if I do not have the required technology for my course?

University leadership is aware of limits experienced by students and faculty regarding access to needed technology, and we are working with other units across campus to do our best to meet your needs.

If you do not have the technology required for your course, please contact your instructor to discuss alternatives as soon as possible.

I have a disability. How can I get assistance with remote learning?

If you are a student with a disability and you require accommodations, please contact Disability Support Services for information on accommodations, registration, and procedures. If you are registered with Disability Support Services, please contact DSS to discuss accommodations that may be necessary in your course. If you have a disability but have not yet contacted Disability Support Services, please call (205) 934-4205, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it., or visit the UAB DSS website. The TDD phone is (205) 934-4248.

How do I get started with remote learning?

Go to uab.instructure.com. Enter your BlazerID and password. Your courses should be located on the dashboard. If you cannot see your courses, follow these instructions to view your courses. Customize your Canvas notification preferences so you do not miss important communication from your instructors.

How can I get help with Canvas?

If you need help logging in to Canvas or locating your courses, Canvas support is available 24/7, 365 days a year. Support options, including how to Submit a Ticket and Live Chat, are available from the Help button on the far left global navigation menu when logged into Canvas. You can also call (833) 519-8477. View the UAB Canvas page for tutorials, guides and instructions for downloading the Canvas Student Mobile App.

I’m worried about taking my courses remotely, what advice can you share?

Time management is important. Remember that while your courses are remote, they are not self-paced. In other words, you will be expected to meet deadlines.Be sure to review the syllabus and course schedule to confirm due dates.

  • Schedule time each day to work on your course activities.
  • Maintain a to-do list, action list or a calendar with reminders.
  • Prioritize urgent and important tasks.
  • Do not procrastinate.

How should I communicate with my instructor and other students?

Frequent and effective communication is vital to your success during remote learning.Use your UAB email or Canvas Inbox for all course-related email.

  • Check your email daily.
  • Do not discuss grades or personal matters publicly in discussion boards, mass emails or web conferences. These matters should be discussed privately with the instructor.
  • Use professional language and be respectful.
  • Do not type in ALL CAPS as that signifies screaming.
  • Avoid sarcasm in responses when you disagree.
  • Be respectful and diplomatic; remember another human being is reading your message.
  • Avoid lingo you would use on social media or text messages.

What are the most commonly used academic technology requirements?

Academic technology requirements are course specific, but the most commonly used are:

  • Microsoft Office: As a UAB student, you have free access to Microsoft Office 365 and 1Tb of file storage.
  • Adobe Reader: A free PDF file viewer that can open and interact with all types of PDF content, including forms and multimedia.
  • Zoom: A web conferencing tool that can be used to attend live lectures/meetings, virtual office hours, student group meetings and more.
  • Turnitin: A tool used to check for plagiarism and improve student writing.
  • ProctorU: A live proctoring solution used to proctor online exams.
  • Respondus Monitor: An automated proctoring solution used to proctor online exams.

You may encounter additional required technologies. For the full list of academic technologies and support guides, please visit the Academic Technologies page.

What resources does UAB offer to help?

Many UAB resources are available to distance students, including but not limited to:

  • University Writing Center: offers free writing help to all UAB students.
  • UAB Libraries: provides a set of library resources to help you continue with your coursework.
  • Disability Student Services (DSS): collaborates with students, faculty, and staff to provide the resources and assistance needed for students to have an accessible university experience.
  • UAB IT for Students: provides consistent, accessible, personalized and collaborative environments to enhance the student experience.

Additional resources and services are available on the One Stop website.

What if I am having trouble accessing WiFi?

For UAB students who may not be able to use a secure WiFi network, UAB is opening a parking lot on campus to provide Drive-In WiFi.

Starting Thursday, April 9, WiFi on the eduroam network will be available in Express Lot 4, located on Fifth Avenue South and 10th Street South on campus, from 6:00 a.m. to 11:00 p.m. daily.

To use WiFi:

  • Drive into the parking lot and park at least every other space to maintain social distancing guidelines.
  • Stay in your car.
  • Connect your device to the eduroam network with your This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. email address and password. Do not use an alias for your BlazerID when you enter your email address.

Keep in mind there are no public restrooms on site, and a limited number of trash receptacles. Please do not litter.

What is a hybrid class? How it will work?

The course format allows for flexibility in using remote and in-person learning. Essentially, it is a blend of in-class instruction and either synchronous or asynchronous remote viewing of the same content delivery. Given the social distancing requirements dictated by the health and safety precautions implemented to address the current COVID-19 pandemic, a hybrid delivery model was seen as an optimal choice. The model also allows one to easily and quickly shift to completely remote delivery should circumstances surrounding the pandemic, or any other natural disaster, dictate such a transition.

Utilizing this format allows students to experience both in-class and remote instruction. Both incoming freshmen and returning students across the nation highly value in-class instruction, more so than traditional f2f or remote instruction. This still allows the necessary health and safety precautions dictated by the pandemic to be implemented. The basic idea is to have 50% of students in Tuesday-Thursday classes and 33% of students in Monday-Wednesday-Friday classes be in class on a given day. In this format, the instructor will present his/her class lecture which will be captured by new camera systems being installed in designated classrooms across campus. The video feed of the in-class presentation will be available synchronously to the remaining registered students as well as stored and available on Canvas for asynchronous viewing. Students will alternate in-class and remote options in a way yet to be determined. The instructional format is dependent on the objectives of a specific course and the ability to socially distance.

Has the university increased the internet bandwidth in order to accommodate the increased internet usage?

Campus has sufficient bandwidth to cover internal and external internet demand. Changes were made this spring to improve VPN bandwidth to accommodate increased remote access demand. Changes were also made to improve connectivity from local ISPs (AT&T).

Student Travel Resources

What travel restrictions are in place?

The UA System’s has restricted ALL non-essential university international and domestic travel. All non-essential university meetings, gatherings, and events are cancelled. Faculty, staff, and students abroad and in international-affiliated programs sponsored by third parties should contact their program administrators for information and further guidance.

The university has suspended all UAB Education Abroad programs through August 15 as a result of the U.S. Department of State Global Level 3 Health Advisory-Reconsider Travel. On March 19, the Department of State upgraded this advisory to Level 4 - Do Not Travel.

“Essential,” as defined in the March 11, 11:45 a.m. email ("Required Review of Domestic Travel, Events and Visitor(s)"), is a determination made by:

  • Deans for activities in schools and colleges
  • VPs and/or AVPs for activities in administrative units (each VP will determine the appropriate starting point for his or her unit)
  • Athletic administrators for activities in Athletics

Decisions should be based on the relative risk of the travel, understanding that our top priority as an institution is the health and safety of our campus community.

Questions to ask when considering the necessity of travel include:

  • Can you explain why the travel is essential?
  • Can the travel be postponed?
  • Can the purpose of the travel be accomplished in another way (e.g., virtually)?

Has UAB canceled student-related travel for the Fall 2020 semester?

UAB continues to monitor the worldwide novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic to prioritize health and safety while also ensuring delivery of quality education and experiences. Due to the continual effect of the pandemic, the university is suspending all UAB student-related international travel through December 31, 2020 as a result of the US Department of State Level 4 Global Health Advisory-Do Not Travel.

The Office of Education Abroad will continue to identify future opportunities for students to study internationally. Students are asked to work with their academic advisors to identify alternative courses to ensure their academic progress. These resources are available to help students stay current with the university’s response to COVID-19. We will continue to keep our campus updated on new developments.

What should I do about travel plans for study abroad, conferences, etc.?

The university has suspended all UAB Education Abroad programs through August 15 as a result of the U.S. Department of State Global Level 3 Health Advisory-Reconsider Travel. On March 19, the Department of State upgraded this advisory to Level 4 - Do Not Travel.

For students on faculty-led programs

The Office of Education Abroad will encourage faculty leaders to redevelop their courses to be facilitated at UAB. Please watch for further communication from your faculty member. If you individually purchased airfare, refund considerations will be collected by the Office of Education Abroad with proof that the air carrier will not issue a refund or flight credit due to the worldwide pandemic.

For students on summer affiliate programs

The Office of Education Abroad encourages students to work with their academic advisors to identify alternative courses to ensure their academic progress.

Financials processes

UAB Education Abroad will be working to refund any fees paid directly to our office, including the admin fee and faculty led program fees, via original payment. This may take a little time with UAB limited business operations but we will notify you when this has occurred. If you applied for summer 2020 scholarships, we encourage you to consider applying for a future term, as your effort this summer will not go unnoticed.

We are saddened by the worldwide effects of the pandemic, including the impact on your study abroad plans. However, we hope you understand that your health is our highest priority and that this decision has not been taken lightly. We understand that this information may be overwhelming, but please know that the university stands ready to assist students with these resources.

We sincerely hope that you’ll consider studying abroad in the future — our team stands ready to assist you with deferring your plans.

If I have traveled to an affected area, what should I do on return?

Any and all travelers returning to the U.S. or coming to the U.S. to participate in UAB-sponsored business or programs, must comply with all U.S. re-entry, quarantine, self-isolation, or self-monitoring requirements in place before returning to or engaging with the university community. To the extent a traveler is monitored or otherwise reporting to UAB during any monitoring period, the traveler must receive express approval from UAB in order to return to the university community.

For travelers returning to campus due to these travel restrictions, the Office for Student Affairs and the Office of Education Abroad will work with the appropriate deans and academic offices to ensure students who must observe a quarantine, self-isolation, or self-monitoring requirement are not penalized academically and receive assistance, if necessary, with related matters.

My education abroad class was cancelled. How will I receive those credits?

UAB students impacted by these travel restrictions will work closely with the Office of Education Abroad to identify an academic plan. Education Abroad will communicate with campus staff to seek late term enrollment, independent study, or alternate ways to ensure progress to degree is not negatively affected.

Latest Updates from UAB

Update Regarding International Students Friday, July 10 at 3 p.m.

Dear UAB students, faculty and staff:

As you may have heard, the Student and Exchange Visitor Program (SEVP) announced on Monday that F-1 international students who are enrolled in schools that switch exclusively to online risk violating their F-1 immigration status and need to leave the US or transfer to an institution that provides in-person instruction. This is an unexpected change to earlier guidance issued in the Spring, when SEVP allowed F-1 international students to take all spring and summer 2020 courses online while remaining in the United States during the pandemic.

We understand this news is concerning. Our international students are an invaluable part of the UAB community. We remain committed to supporting them in their educational and research contributions to our community.

UAB, like institutions all over the country, are seeking more clarification as they move forward with Fall 2020 planning. SEVP’s announcement also addressed the ability of F-1 students to attend schools that are adopting a hybrid model of instruction. We have evaluated these new regulations and believe at this time that UAB’s hybrid instructional model which provides for a combination of online and in-person instruction for Fall 2020 complies with SEVP’s July 7 guidance for F-1 students and allows these students to remain enrolled in the US. This, however, is a constantly evolving landscape, and we will provide updates as soon as possible if and when new guidance emerges.

For more information, please visit the ISSS website (found here) which contains additional guidance and frequently asked questions (FAQs).

Pam Benoit
Senior Vice President and Provost

Catherine Crowe
Director, International Student and Scholar Services

David Hoffman
Executive Director, INTO-UAB

Expense Reduction Strategy Updates Friday, July 10 at 8:30 a.m.

UAB and UAB Medicine faculty and staff,

On May 4, the university and UAB Medicine/Health System announced expense reduction strategies to address budget shortfalls for their separate lines of business due to COVID 19. These actions were necessary to protect the institution and our employees as we assessed the financial impacts of the pandemic.

Throughout this extremely challenging time, the UAB family has shown great resilience in the face of disruption and stress to deliver on our vital mission pillars. Thank you for all you have done and continue to do.

Please read the following important updates regarding changes to the expense reduction strategies implemented by UAB Medicine/Health System-managed entities and the university in conjunction with the University of Alabama System.

UAB Medicine Update

To protect jobs as much as possible during COVID-19 financial uncertainty, UAB Medicine announced tiered salary reductions in May for clinical faculty and staff in Workgroup C (check your workgroup) making more than $31,200/year. It was anticipated that these reductions would last through the remainder of 2020.

The financial outlook has improved. In addition to receiving federal and state support, UAB Medicine has also seen faster-than-expected returns to near pre-COVID patient volumes. This increase in volume has been driven by our dedicated faculty and staff. Our financial stability was recently bolstered by our strategic alliance with Ascension St. Vincent’s.

We promised that, if we were able, UAB Medicine would restore compensation and possibly return the lost wages.

  • Retroactive to July 1, we will restore the compensation to pre-salary-reduction levels for UAB Medicine faculty and staff who received a reduction.
  • We will reimburse faculty and staff for the salary reductions between May and July 1. The restoration is for all staff except the CEO and his direct reports and senior leaders (approximately 140 people). Because compensation plans are varied, faculty compensation restoration plans will be coordinated by the HSF Clinical Departments. The payment of this back compensation will occur sometime in late August due to the required time to process the payroll activity.
  • At this time, the employer match/contribution to voluntary 403(b) retirement plans remains suspended. A decision on the retirement contribution reductions will not be made until the end of the fiscal year (Sept. 30) and will be made in consultation with the UA System.

We appreciate the dedication of our health care heroes who have stepped up in the face of great challenges, and we are pleased to be able to reinstate their compensation.

University Update

The university projected a smaller budget shortfall in May than did the UAB Medicine/Health System. As a result, the university did not implement widespread faculty and staff salary reductions as did UAB Medicine/Health System-managed entities. University senior leadership took a voluntary pay cut, and those reductions will remain in place through the end of the ongoing furlough period.

At this time, roughly 300 university staff in Workgroup A (check your workgroup) remain on an unpaid leave furlough status. Based on current financial projections, the furlough period will go through July 31 and end as scheduled.

Furloughed employees set to resume work will receive instructions from their supervisors in the coming days. Furloughed employees will resume work in either an on-campus or remote capacity, depending on the details of their unit’s operational plan for re entry. Employees are expected to remain productive, and some may have typical job duties adjusted based on unit-specific needs.

We ask that supervisors make staffing plans that allow for flexibility as required as furloughed employees transition back to working. For instance, there may be child care or other considerations that require temporary special considerations relative to remote or on-campus work schedules.

If a supervisor has a business need to reinstate a furloughed employee before the end of the furlough period, they are encouraged to complete the Furloughed Employee Return to Work Form.

At this time, the employer match/contribution to voluntary 403(b) retirement plans remains suspended. A decision on the retirement contribution reductions will not be made until the end of the fiscal year (Sept. 30) and will be made in consultation with the UA System.

We sincerely appreciate the dedication our faculty and staff have demonstrated to fulfilling our mission and to each other during this difficult time. The pandemic continues to pose challenges, and uncertainties remain. COVID-19 increases could jeopardize our operations and financial health. Please support our continued recovery by being an example to others and wearing a mask, social distancing and practicing good hand hygiene. We all need to do our part to avoid taking steps back.

Please utilize resources like the Benevolent Fund’s Employee Emergency Assistance program or Blazer Kitchen, if needed. Faculty and staff who want to support colleagues who are struggling financially are encouraged to please give to the UAB Benevolent Fund.

Sincerely,

Ray L. Watts
President, UAB

Reid Jones
CEO, UAB Medicine

UAB COVID-19 Update: COVID-19 sentinel testing Thursday, July 2 at 3:30 p.m.

UAB students, faculty and staff,

As we continue in partnership with the UA System to implement our phased approach to gradually unite on campus, UAB and UAB Medicine strive to be the safest campus in America and keep health and safety our top priority. Among many other strategies, we are adopting sentinel testing as an additional layer to minimize risk and support a continued re-entry.

The sentinel testing system collects information useful for monitoring trends in diseases and pathogens. We plan to test between 2.5% to 5% of the on-campus population weekly to detect how COVID-19 may be circulating among our asymptomatic population. The test will be a self-administered swab of the nostril. Click here for additional information and frequently asked questions about sentinel testing.

This random sentinel COVID-19 testing of those who have returned to campus will begin the week of July 6. Those selected for testing will receive an email on the Sunday of the week they are to be tested, with instructions on how and where to get tested.

Submitting to sentinel testing is voluntary. Your choice to participate or not will in no way impact your employment or your status as a student. Nevertheless, we hope that you will participate and help us in the fight against this virus. Sentinel testing will supplement mandatory COVID-19 testing for returning students through the Testing for Alabama program announced on June 29. Additional testing strategies for employees are being explored.

Students, please continue to read the Greenmail e-newsletter every Wednesday for important announcements and details about reentry. Faculty and staff, please continue to read eReporter, and UAB Medicine employees also read ONE. For more information on UAB’s re-entry to campus, visit uab.edu/reentry.

#UABUnited,
Ray L. Watts, UAB President
Will Ferniany, UAB Health System CEO

COVID-19 testing for students this fall Monday, June 29 at 10 a.m.

UAB students, faculty and staff,

To promote health and safety on campus as part of our comprehensive reentry planning, all UAB students returning for the fall semester will receive a free COVID-19 test, supported by CARES Act funding through the State of Alabama. Throughout the semester, random, voluntary sentinel testing will be provided to some students to help identify trends and potential problem areas.

In partnership with the University of Alabama System, UAB has led an effort with the State of Alabama to create the Testing for Alabama program. Through the program, all students of two- and four-year higher education institutions can receive a free COVID-19 reentry test. Read the announcement at UAB news online.

Protocols for how testing will be administered are being developed. We anticipate the test will likely be either a swab in the nostril — though not the more invasive nasopharyngeal swab — or an oral saline gargle test that we currently have under development.

Our ability to test every student returning to campus will go a long way in helping us maintain a safe environment. We are excited that, through our partnership with Governor Kay Ivey and the State Department of Health, we can have a broader impact in our state by helping make testing available to public colleges and universities throughout Alabama.

On our campus, testing will supplement other strategies to maintain a safe environment, like the Stay Safe Together™ platform that includes our COVID assessment healthcheck symptom monitoring tool. UAB is also developing a voluntary exposure notification app powered by Apple and Google that we look forward to rolling out in the coming weeks.

In addition to COVID-19 testing for students through Testing for Alabama, a sentinel testing system for on-campus faculty and staff was piloted in June and will be implemented broadly starting on July 8. Additional testing strategies for employees are being explored.

Updates will be communicated to students through the Greenmail newsletter, and to faculty and staff in eReporter.

#UABUnited,
Ray L. Watts, President
Pam Benoit, Senior VP and Provost

Safety compliance and reporting Friday, June 26 at 9 a.m.

UAB students, faculty and staff,

As UAB continues our phased, gradual reentry to campus, we want to assure you that our COVID-19 safety protocols, based on the input of infectious disease and public health experts, will be enforced to help promote the health of our community and the continuity of our mission.

We know that creating and maintaining a culture of safety will require awareness, vigilance, monitoring, effective structures for reporting concerns and corrective action for non-compliance.

We need to be united for our common good, and each of us has a role to play.

UAB’s Reentry Expectations and Guidelines are posted online at uab.edu/reentry, as are Personal Safety Practices. Everyone who returns to campus is expected to comply fully with these safety protocols and any specialized guidance from their particular departments/units/schools. We also ask that — to protect the UAB family and our broader community — you practice safety guidelines when you are off campus.

If you observe that health and safety rules are not being observed or enforced on campus, discuss your concerns with your supervisor. If non-compliance persists, you may contact Human Resources or report it anonymously through the UAB Ethics Hotline. Anyone who reports non-compliance is protected against retaliation, and concerns of retaliation should be reported to Human Resources or the Office of Compliance and Risk Assurance.

Persistent failure or willful disregard for health and safety protocols by any employee or student will result in consequences consistent with UAB’s discipline policies for staff, faculty and students.

We are committed to preserving the health of the communities in which we live, learn and work, and the safety precautions we have adopted and will continue to adopt to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic apply to everyone equally. By observing them, we are confident we can continue to teach and learn, research, support Alabama’s social and economic needs, and deliver vital patient care.

Students, please continue to read the Greenmail e-newsletter every Wednesday for important announcements and details about reentry. Faculty and staff, please continue to read eReporter, and UAB Medicine employees also read ONE. Employees or others who want to keep up with student communications, sign up to receive Greenmail and visit the student sections of uab.edu/coronavirus and uab.edu/reentry.

#UABUnited,

Ray L. Watts
UAB President

Will Ferniany
UAB Health System CEO

Fall Semester Schedule Tuesday, June 16 at 2:30 p.m.

UAB students, faculty and staff,

Our gradual re-entry to campus continues and is going well, as is our planning with the University of Alabama System for a safe return this fall with a hybrid model – a course delivery system which, because of social distancing precautions, requires a combination of both in-person instruction and remote instruction. To promote the health and safety of the campus community, adjustments have been made to the fall semester schedule:

  • Fall semester hybrid classes will start Monday, Aug. 24, 2020.
  • Fall semester hybrid classes will end Friday, Nov. 20, for the Thanksgiving break.
  • Students will not return to campus after Thanksgiving break.
  • Exceptions can be granted for students based on work, research or clinical responsibilities, and accommodations can be requested for international students or others who do not have alternate living arrangements.
  • Classes during the week of Nov. 30-Dec. 4, as well as final exams during the week of Dec. 7-11, will be conducted remotely.
    Coursework engagement during these weeks is necessary to accommodate SACSCOC accrediting standard requirements for credit granted for coursework.

Additional information for our phased re-entry to campus (including details about on-campus housing, classroom protocols, personal protective equipment, and COVID-19 training and testing) continue to be worked out and will be communicated in the coming days and weeks. UAB’s e-newsletters are your source of official information. To stay informed of the latest news and updates, students are encouraged read Greenmail each Wednesday, and faculty and staff are encouraged to read eReporter each Tuesday and Friday. We will also continue to update uab.edu/coronavirus and uab.edu/reentry.

In the meantime, please continue to be an example in our community by following important COVID-19 safety guidelines.

Update: Re-entry clarificationFriday, May 22 at 5:30 p.m.

The following applies to the university’s re-entry plan. The Health System is on a separate plan to transition from the Limited Business Model and began resuming clinical operations in early May.

UAB faculty and staff,

Earlier this week, the university announced a gradual, phased approach to campus re-entry detailed at www.uab.edu/reentry.

Phase I, which is set for May 26 through June 15, includes the gradual re-entry of some individuals with clinical or research responsibilities. This time period is a window in which individuals approved to return in this phase will begin campus re-entry; not everyone in Phase I will return May 26.

Before individuals in Phase I (or any future phase) re-enter campus, several steps must be completed:

  1. Supervisors will draft a unit-specific operational re-entry plan and submit it for approval.
  2. Subsequently, you will receive an email from Campus Learning (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.; emails from this address are not spam).
  3. When you receive the email from the learning management system, follow the prompts and complete required training.
  4. After you complete the COVID-19: Basic Safety and Awareness Course, you will be prompted to complete UAB HealthCheck, the UAB-specific COVID-19 Assessment Tool for self-reporting symptoms and exposure.
  5. After you complete the required training and health check, your supervisor will be notified that you are approved to return to campus.

No one is permitted to return to campus until they have completed these steps and have clearance for re-entry from their supervisor. When you return, you must follow all safety guidelines. You should not initiate training modules until you receive prompts from Campus Learning by email. This is to verify that UAB personnel have completed their training.

Re-entry checklists are available to guide students, faculty and staff as they prepare for their return to campus and when they are on campus.

At this time, not everyone will know into which re-entry phase they fit and when they will be approved to return. Contact your supervisor with questions about your phase. We will continue to support units in the development of their required operational plans so updates can be provided.

Please be on the lookout for emails from Human Resources (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) and Campus Learning (This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.) and follow prompts. Emails are sent from these addresses, but these are not email inboxes; please contact This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with questions.

Sincerely,

Alesia Jones
Chief Human Resources Officer

University Gradual Re-entry to CampusMonday, May 18 at 4:30 p.m.

The following announcement describes the university’s re-entry plan. The Health System is on a separate plan to transition from the Limited Business Model and began resuming clinical operations in early May.

On Tuesday, May 26, UAB will transition from the university’s Limited Business Model into Modified Business Operations. During Modified Business Operations, UAB will begin a gradual, phased approach with some groups/functions returning to campus before others.

It is important to gradually bring individuals back on campus to promote social distancing. This phased approach will also allow us to evaluate strategies for effectiveness and minimize risk.

Only *students, faculty and staff who are part of an approved unit operational plan will be permitted to return to campus during this phase and will be responsible for strictly following safety guidelines and requirements in place to minimize potential risk. Clinical and research personnel will be the first to return to campus following the approval of units’ operational plans.

*Students: Students in clinical areas must receive approval from their program to return to campus. Researchers at post-doctoral and graduate/pre-doctoral levels may continue or initiate studies on site following approved unit operational plans to ensure the safe return to campus. Other trainees engaged in research, such as undergraduate students and volunteers, must request approval through the Office of Research exception process.

UAB is fortunate to have extensive expertise in several disciplines that was utilized on UAB and University of Alabama System task forces to craft well-informed re-entry strategies guided by five principles:

  1. Preserve the health of our university community and Birmingham.
  2. Maintain and deliver on our education, research and community engagement by continuing to recruit and enroll students, teach those students, conduct research, and help stimulate the Alabama economy.
  3. Preserve and maintain university operations necessary to support mission-critical activities, both now and into the future.
  4. Treat students and employees fairly and equitably.
  5. Remain fiscally solvent now and into the future so as to be able to deliver on mission-critical activities for the long term.

Detailed plans and guidance to minimize risk and promote quality outcomes across all mission pillars are available at uab.edu/reentry and cover many areas:

  • Required web-based training (as soon as available; in development)
  • Symptom and exposure tracking and contact tracing (as soon as available; in development)
  • COVID-19 testing
  • Guidance for high-risk individuals
  • Phased staffing plans and staffing options
  • Personal protective equipment (including masks/face coverings, gloves, etc.)
  • Social distancing
  • Hygiene (handwashing, hand sanitizers, cough/sneeze etiquette)
  • Public transportation/Blazer Express
  • Enhanced environmental health and cleaning procedures
  • Protocols in offices, reception areas, elevators, labs, classrooms, outdoor areas, etc.
  • Mental and emotional well-being
  • Enter/Exit control

Guidance and requirements are subject to change and will be updated prior to future phases of re-entry, including a return to in-person instruction.

Anticipated Phased Approach Timeline

We anticipate restrictions and limitations in activities will be in place for the next 12 to 18 months. After evaluating several factors, including the trending numbers of new COVID-19 cases in our community, our testing capability and availability, our ability to monitor the spread of the virus in the campus community, the adequacy of community health care resources, current supply levels of personal protective equipment, and applicable federal, state and local directives, we developed the following color code system to coordinate and integrate operational procedures across UAB.

The active color code will be determined based upon state, local or UA System restrictions and conditions. Changes in the prevailing code will be announced by UAB leadership in response to the changing circumstances. Each level defines a different set of work criteria rules and regulations and operational plans.

RED

Access Severely Limited
(maintenance only, no research or academic activity)

YELLOW

Modified Business Operations
(26% - 74% capacity)

ORANGE

Limited Business Operations
(0% - 25% capacity)

GREEN

Full Access; Limited Public Health Restrictions
(75% - 100% capacity)

Orange
  • Limited business operations with essential services only
  • Remote learning
  • Suspension of on-campus events and activities
Yellow
  • Continuation of essential services and research support
  • Resumption of research activities as operational plans are approved
  • Clinic openings with operational plans and restricted personnel approved
  • Resumption of student clinical experiences following operational plans after approval
  • Critical administrative, business operations, academic, student affairs as communicated from university/school leadership based on approved operational plans; this is a fluid situation, and employees should check with their supervisor for guidance
  • Staggered return to campus of faculty and staff to prepare for resumption of modified fall return
  • All returns to campus will be based on on-site needs and approved operational plans
  • Athletes (depending on guidance from the conference)
  • Some faculty, staff and students continue to work remotely
  • Students return in accordance with approved/sanctioned activities (e.g., athletics, scheduled residence hall move-in, start of class) and in compliance with all safety protocols (e.g., mandatory training, health check, testing)
Green
  • Faculty, staff and students work on campus

The COVID-19 pandemic is a dynamic situation that continues to evolve, and our response will inevitably evolve as well. We will therefore update these guidelines and the protocols outlined below as necessary to continue to ensure the health and safety of the campus community. As of mid-May, we are working toward implementing guidelines for the Yellow/Modified Business Operations level as research and clinical activities resume.

Productivity in Modified Business Operations

In March, UAB — in partnership with the University of Alabama System — announced a Limited Business Model to slow the spread of COVID-19. In the initial phase of Limited Business, staff in Workgroups A (academic staff) and C (clinical staff) were assigned to one of three sub-groups:

  • Group 1: Needed to continue work in-person
  • Group 2: Needed to continue work but can do so remotely
  • Group 3: Not needed to work during a time of limited business

Note: Workgroup assignments (i.e., A, C, F) can be checked via the UAB Employee Workforce App online. Subgroup assignments (i.e., 1, 2, 3) are determined by an employee’s unit leadership/supervisor.

During the initial eight-week phase of Limited Business, employees — even those who could not work — continued to receive regular compensation while the financial and operational impact of COVID-19 was assessed. As Limited Business was prolonged, we could not continue to pay employees who could not work.

Effective May 10, all staff in Workgroup A Group 3 and a limited number of staff in Workgroup A Group 2 were placed on temporary furlough (May 10-July 31). Furloughed individuals are those who — by the nature of their work — could not do their jobs remotely or who serve in roles for which demand decreased or would decrease to a critical point during the furlough period. Some units exercised discretion and addressed unit-specific budget shortfalls by placing additional staff on furlough status who had worked effectively during the Limited Business model. No UAB Medicine staff in Workgroup C were placed on furlough due to the anticipated return to clinical operations as the hospital and clinics reopen.

As a result of furloughs effective May 10, remaining Workgroup A staff are those who can work effectively during Modified Business Operations according to their supervisor. As such, non-furloughed staff in Workgroup A are expected to maintain a state of full productivity in Modified Business Operations. Employees with questions are encouraged to ask their designated Human Resources representative.

Next Steps

Individuals who have responsibilities described within each of the phases and are anticipated to return to campus, and their supervisors, will be contacted with specific guidance as soon as possible, and updates and information will continue to be added to uab.edu/coronavirus and uab.edu/reentry.

Update on COVID-19: Additional Expense Reductions Due to COVID-19 Crisis Monday, May 4 at 12:30 p.m.

UAB faculty and staff,

UAB is experiencing the harsh financial realities of the COVID-19 pandemic, as are institutions of higher education and health care worldwide.

The Universities of Arizona, Kentucky, Louisville, Ohio, Oregon and Wisconsin recently joined a growing number of universities and academic medical centers to announce some combination of salary reductions, furloughs or reduced hours, layoffs, and stopping employer contributions to retirement plans. Washington University in St. Louis furloughed 1,300 employees for 90 days. The Mayo Clinic announced it would furlough or reduce hours for 30,000 employees.

Many revenue streams have slowed or stopped due to the pandemic. Clinical revenue is substantially down for UAB Medicine. For the university, social distancing and other operational changes have negatively affected revenue. Without changes to our operations, the university will incur a budget shortfall of $40+ million in the remaining five months of the FY20 fiscal year ending Sept. 30, and UAB Medicine could have a $230 million budget shortfall by the end of September. Federal and state stimulus funding will address only a portion of our losses.

To protect our employees and the institution, beginning in March we took quick steps in partnership with the University of Alabama System to limit travel and restrict hiring and discretionary spending, among other strategies. To date, the university and UAB Medicine have been able to largely sustain uninterrupted payroll for more than seven weeks of limited business while we assessed the extent of the pandemic’s financial impact. Despite our best efforts, we must take additional actions we had hoped to avoid and delayed as long as possible.

University leadership explored many options with advisory panels across campus, including Faculty Senate and Staff Council leaders, the University’s Budget Advisory Committee, and others to determine what expense reduction options should be adopted. UAB Medicine gathered input from leaders across the organization and its governing bodies to determine expense-reduction strategies.

After thorough assessment and projections, we regret to announce additional university and UAB Medicine expense-reduction strategies.

University Leadership Salary Reductions

  • Effective May 1, university leadership had their salaries reduced for at least the remainder of the fiscal year as follows: President 15%, Senior Vice Presidents 10%, Deans and Vice Presidents 7%

UAB Medicine Leadership Salary Reductions

  • UAB Medicine Senior Leaders (Including Department Chairs): 10% reduction in annual compensation, effective May 10 through Dec. 31, 2020
  • Health System Executive Cabinet: 15% reduction in annual compensation, effective May 10 through Dec. 31, 2020

In addition, the university and UAB Medicine/Health System-managed entities must implement different responses to address budget shortfalls for their separate lines of business.

USE THE EMPLOYEE WORKFORCE APP TO CHECK YOUR WORKGROUP

University Expense Reduction Strategies

  • Temporary furloughs for approximately 325 university staff unable to work effectively in a remote setting, for a period effective May 10 through July 31, 2020:
    • Temporary furloughs will affect Workgroup A Group 3 and a limited number of university staff in Workgroup A Group 2. Human Resources will work with supervisors to identify and alert affected Group 2 staff as soon as possible and no later than the end of business Friday, May 8.
    • During furlough, employees retain benefits such as health insurance and are eligible for unemployment benefits and additional assistance through the CARES Act. UAB will cover the cost of both the employer and employee contributions to health plans (including employee premiums) for affected staff during the furlough period.
    • Information for furloughed university employees is available online. Employees can also contact their designated HR representative.
    • UAB HR will file claims for unemployment benefits with the Alabama Department of Labor on behalf of furloughed staff.
    • The furlough period might be shorter or longer depending on the evolving impact of the pandemic.

Strategies for UAB Medicine/Health System-managed Entities

  • Temporary salary reductions for many clinical faculty and Workgroup C staff in UAB Medicine and Health System-managed entities:
    • Workgroup C salary reductions are effective May 10 through Dec. 31, 2020. Implementation dates for School of Medicine clinical department faculty may vary slightly and will be directly communicated to those affected.
    • School of Medicine clinical department faculty salary reductions will average 7%. Specific salary reductions for Workgroup C will be implemented on the following sliding scale:
      • Hourly wage employees making $15 or less per hour: 0% reduction in annual compensation
      • $0 – $31,200: 0% reduction in annual compensation
      • $31,201 – $50,000: 3% reduction in annual compensation
      • $50,001 – $75,000: 4% reduction in annual compensation
      • $75,001 – $125,000: 5% reduction in annual compensation
      • $125,001 – $200,000: 6% reduction in annual compensation
      • Greater than $200,000: 7% reduction in annual compensation
      • Senior Leaders (Including Department Chairs): 10% reduction in annual compensation
      • Health System Executive Cabinet: 15% reduction in annual compensation

    Thank you for all you have done and continue to do for our mission during this time. These actions are a reflection only of the harsh economic realities of the COVID-19 crisis, not a reflection of the value of UAB faculty and staff or their job performance. We are disappointed that this action has become necessary.

    We will continue to assess the crisis. Future decisions will be determined by the financial realities of the time as we work to reverse financial deficits and fight this COVID-19 pandemic.

    Those of you who need to take advantage of resources like the Benevolent Fund’s Employee Emergency Assistance program or Blazer Kitchen, please do. Faculty and staff who want to support their colleagues are encouraged to please give to the UAB Benevolent Fund.

    University Human Resources
    UAB Medicine Human Resources

    We are confident that we will get through this crisis and be a stronger and more resilient institution on the other side. We will keep you updated as events unfold.

    Sincerely,

    Ray L. Watts
    President, UAB

    Will Ferniany
    CEO, UAB Health System

    Update on COVID-19: Financial Process, 403(b) and Fall Semester Thursday, April 30 at 12:30 p.m.

    UAB Faculty and Staff,

    As April comes to a close, questions remain about UAB’s plans to address the financial realities of the COVID-19 crisis and plans for the fall semester.

    Our hope is to offer in-person instruction options in the fall – a goal we are working towards with the guidance of task forces at the UA System and UAB levels. While circumstances could ultimately limit our ability, we are working to determine the logistics that would facilitate a safe return to campus.

    Financially, UAB is still working through the process shared with the campus community recently. In an April 16 virtual town hall for faculty and staff, Vice President Allen Bolton explained the initial estimated negative impact on our budget to be between $52 million and $77 million this fiscal year. UAB Medicine has projected a possible $230 million budget shortfall by the end of September.

    UAB leaders have been exploring many expense reduction options with advisory panels across campus, including Faculty Senate and Staff Council leaders, the University’s Budget Advisory Committee and others to determine what options should be adopted to close that gap.

    At this time, employer matches/contributions to voluntary 403(b) retirement plans will be temporarily suspended or reduced in accordance with the requirements of the plans. For university employees, this will start in May and last through September 2020. Because the health system has a larger budget shortfall than the university, it will also start this action in May but will extend it through December 2020. Details will be communicated directly with individuals who participate in these plans.

    We continue to work on a comprehensive plan in coordination with UAB Medicine that should be final no later than next week. The good news is, due to new information and projections this week, our projected budget shortfall is several million dollars less than originally estimated. This is positive, allowing us to revisit the extent of expense reduction options needed in addition to our hiring and spending restrictions already in place.

    It remains our goal to minimize the disruption to our valued faculty and staff, which is why we have taken the appropriate time to ensure that estimates are accurate and actions we ultimately take are absolutely necessary. As we assess strategies, we are thoughtfully considering the timing of any announcement.

    Our work to finalize a comprehensive plan continues, and we will keep you informed as soon as we have new information. Thank you for all of your efforts on behalf of our multifaceted mission.

    Sincerely, Ray L. Watts President, UAB

    Message to UAB Students, Faculty and Staff from UA System Chancellor Finis St. John Friday, April 17 at 4 p.m.


    Finis St. John

    Chancellor

    The University of Alabama System


    Our University of Alabama System Campuses will be the Safest in America

    I want to thank President Ray Watts, Dr. Will Ferniany, Provost Pam Benoit, Dr. Selwyn Vickers and the faculty and the staff who are working tirelessly during these difficult times to provide meaningful support and uninterrupted teaching to students at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

    The entire UA System – UA, UAB, UAH and the UAB Health System – is committed to using all possible resources to reopen our campuses and resume normal activities. It is not a matter of IF, but one of WHEN.

    We are extremely fortunate that UAB, home to one of the world’s foremost academic medical centers, is part of our System. With knowledge and guidance from the scientists, doctors, researchers and numerous higher education experts on our campuses, we are developing comprehensive plans to make sure our three campuses are the safest in America when our students return.

    We have established a System-wide Task Force to consider strategies of all kinds: testing measures, enhanced cleaning, classroom procedures, housing policies, security and wellness programs, and more. We will update you about timelines on our website (www.uasystem.edu) and through future email communication from the UAB leadership team. If you have suggestions you would like to share with the System Office, please email us: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

    The University of Alabama System will not only survive these difficult times, we will prevail. With your support, we will overcome these challenges. Thank you for your dedication to the University.

    Summer School Announcement Wednesday, April 8 at 9 a.m.

    UAB students, faculty and staff,

    Thank you all for your hard work and understanding in this time of change and uncertainty. Your Blazer spirit is essential to keeping our UAB community safe and to ensuring our ability to serve and educate effectively.

    As part of the University of Alabama System Office’s 24/7 planning to safeguard our campus community, it has developed an Updated Interim Emergency Policy regarding summer classes. Given that the majority of our summer courses offered after June 22 have already transitioned to an online format, we will not offer in-person/on-site classes for summer 2020. All instruction will be delivered remotely using the most effective tools available.

    Students, please work with your faculty members to access materials and utilize all the teaching and learning tools we have posted for you. Although classes are not being taught in person this spring or summer, our faculty is delivering a full array of courses through remote teaching. This FAQ provides important details regarding laboratories, in-person research, residence halls and campus dining, in addition to grading methods and other important updates.

    As we have previously announced, we will not hold in-person orientations or commencement ceremonies until further notice. We have online programming prepared for both. All of you who look forward to participating in a future graduation ceremony on campus will have that opportunity as soon as on-campus operations are restored and scheduled.

    We remain committed to delivering on our mission, vision and shared values to create knowledge that will change the world.

    Campus community member tests positive for COVID-19 Tuesday, March 31 at 5:30 p.m.

    UAB was notified this afternoon that a campus community member tested positive for COVID-19 today, March 31, 2020. The safety and well-being of the community is UAB's top priority, so we are providing this notification out of an abundance of caution. It is important to note that the vast majority of the campus community has been working and learning remotely.

    State and local health departments have protocols for testing and advising cases – including contact tracing and notifying individuals who may have been exposed. Public health authorities determine what information is shared publicly in the interest of health and in accordance with privacy requirements.

    The university is taking precautionary measures – including cleaning and disinfecting – and continues to encourage aggressive social distancing and other steps to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

    Extended Duration of Limited Business Model Thursday, March 26 at 1:30 p.m.

    USE THE EMPLOYEE WORKFORCE APP TO CHECK YOUR WORKGROUP

    • The following information about extending the duration of the limited business model applies BOTH to Workgroups A and C.
    • Faculty (Workgroup F) involved in activities that require a presence at their work location (e.g., patient care or essential research) should continue to report to their place of work. Faculty who can work remotely (e.g., if you have only instructing responsibilities that can be done online), please do so from your home if possible. If you have questions, consult your supervisor.
    • For guidance on research activities, please see Resources for Researchers on uab.edu/coronavirus.
    • UAB Hospital never closes and continues to prepare to safely isolate and care for COVID-19 patients.

    UAB faculty and staff (including student/employee workers),

    We often say UAB’s people are our most valuable resource, and we sincerely thank you for all you do for UAB and our community in this challenging time. We continue to monitor the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic and carefully plan in an attempt to minimize disruptions while maintaining critical functions in a safe environment.

    As you know, UAB announced an initial 14-day limited business model in mid-March for Workgroups A and C. We are now extending the duration of the limited business model — as it is now — for Workgroups A and C until or unless notified otherwise by their supervisor.

    All employees who are working remotely, or unable to perform their jobs remotely, will continue under the same conditions and circumstances as previously announced – including pay and benefits. We will continue to update and inform you of any changes to this policy, and your supervisor will notify you of any changes to your work group, taking into account the need to stagger campus visit times and maintain social distancing at all times.

    As a reminder, the categories of employees in Limited Business Model Workgroup A and C are (employees are assigned to the appropriate group by their unit leadership/supervisor and should follow supervisor instructions):

    1. Workgroup A and C, Group 1: Those who will continue work in-person and continue to be paid at the normal rate. Do not come to work if you are sick, and continue to practice social distancing and good hygiene.
      • Supervisors should make every effort to not include student-employees in Workgroup A or C, Group 1 on-campus work. If a supervisor thinks a student’s role is essential, approval must be granted by HR before a student is assigned to Workgroup A or C, Group 1.
    2. Workgroup A and C, Group 2: Those who will continue work but can do so from home and continue to be paid at the normal rate.
      • Read UAB’s temporary telecommuting guidance and fill out and sign the telecommuting agreement if you have not already. If you completed a telecommuting agreement for the initial 14-day limited business phase, you do not need to fill it out a second time.
      • Working from home can be challenging. For the short- and long-term health of our institution and our vital mission, managing those challenges to remain productive is imperative. Communicate with your supervisor and/or speak with your Human Resources representative for guidance.
      • Your group assignment is subject to change if business needs arise.
    3. Workgroup A and C, Group 3: Those who will not work during a time of limited business and will continue to receive normal pay and benefits until or unless notified otherwise by their supervisor.
      • Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic makes it necessary to limit on-campus personnel to only those whose functions are imperative during limited business operations — and not all functions can be done remotely or are required under extreme circumstances.
      • Workgroup A and C, Group 3, may be called upon to perform duties (on-site or remotely) within the employee’s skill set but outside of the employee’s job description.
      • Workgroup A and C, Group 3 employees will continue to be paid during the limited business period until or unless notified otherwise by their supervisor. In the event of a prolonged disruption that requires this policy to change, leadership will work with all sources (federal, state, etc.) in an effort to continue financial support of our employees. UAB is raising funds to help those affected by COVID-19. Students in need of assistance can request a COVID-19 emergency grant. Employees in need of assistance can pursue the Employee Emergency Assistance Program.
      • If you need to go to campus to get critical personal belongings, coordinate with your supervisor for approval and to stagger timing with others to minimize personal contact. Absolutely do not go to campus if you are sick.
      • Your group assignment is subject to change if business needs arise.

    NOTE: Unit leaders/supervisors will assign and communicate group assignments within Workgroup A and C.

    Employment and pay for Federal Work Study students will be handled per current federal guidance.

    UAB — working within the framework of the proactive COVID-19 planning led by The University of Alabama System — will maintain health and safety as our top priority. We are committed to making prudent decisions and communicating regularly.

    Please take care of yourself and each other as much as possible.

    Spring Semester Announcement Wednesday, March 18 at 4:30 p.m.

    UAB Coronavirus (COVID-19) Update: Spring Semester Announcement

    Update: Yesterday we communicated that Dr. Mike Saag tested positive for COVID-19 after returning from a trip to New York. It is important to note that after returning from his trip he did not work or see patients. When tested, all proper isolation and protective protocols were followed to ensure safe testing.

    Students, faculty and staff,

    Thank you for your efforts to minimize the spread of novel coronavirus (COVID-19). In the midst of an extremely unsettling time, the Blazer community has come together to make sacrifices and support one another. Please continue to practice aggressive social distancing and good hygiene so we can “flatten the curve” and save lives.

    When we announced the online/alternative instruction format March 12, it was unclear how long it would last. It is now clear that in-person instruction will not be possible for the remainder of the semester.

    As part of the ongoing University of Alabama System Office planning to safeguard our campus community, UAB and our sister campuses are announcing today that there will be no more in-person/on-site classes for the duration of the spring semester. Instead of on-campus commencement ceremonies this spring, UAB will host virtual/alternative commencement ceremonies.

    This is an unprecedented situation, but UAB remains committed to minimizing disruptions while keeping health and safety our top priority. Additional logistics will be communicated in the coming days, but here are details we know now:

    Online and Alternative Teaching

    The UAB spring semester will resume Wednesday, March 25, in an online/alternative format. All instruction will be delivered remotely using the most effective tools available. Students should work with their instructors to access materials and utilize resources, an online FAQ and guidance to help them succeed in this format. Faculty have been provided eLearning and IT resources, as well as peer guidance. Policies regarding clinical and research requirements, student-teacher programs and other specific professional programs will be formulated based on guidance from the state of Alabama and the appropriate academic departments and governing agencies.

    Virtual/Alternative Commencement Ceremonies

    We are deeply disappointed that our graduating Blazers will not experience a traditional commencement this spring, but we will do everything we can to recognize and celebrate your accomplishments. There are several commencement ceremonies each spring, and details of each virtual/alternative commencement will be communicated in the coming days and weeks. This announcement is being made now to best accommodate the logistics of graduating students and their families, as well as campus departments. Additional information about this and other opportunities will be provided.

    Residence Halls

    Now that we know on-campus instruction will not take place this semester, we can begin to make decisions and provide guidance to allow students to move out of their residence hall rooms. We are formulating a plan now to allow a systematic and safe way for students to retrieve their belongings and move out. This plan will be shared in a separate communication directly to residential students. Students, please DO NOT RETURN TO CAMPUS at this time. It remains vitally important to aggressively promote social distancing and “flatten the curve.” Students should email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if an extreme hardship or circumstance arises. Students are not authorized to return to campus outside of this plan, and any who show up without authorization will not be accommodated.

    Now that on-campus classes will not resume this semester, a plan will be communicated in the near future regarding residential student housing fees and meal plans. Transportation Services continues to discuss parking issues and will provide further guidance in the future. Please stay safe and take your responsibility to “flatten the curve” seriously. Together, we can save lives.

    Physician Tests Positive for COVID-19 Tuesday, March 17 at 9:30 p.m.

    Dr. Mike Saag tested positive for COVID-19 after returning from a trip to New York. It is important to note that after returning from his trip he did not work or see patients. When tested, all proper isolation and protective protocols were followed to ensure safe testing.

    UAB Coronavirus Update: Physician Tests Positive for COVID-19

    UAB Community,

    Mike Saag, M.D., a physician in the UAB Division of Infectious Disease, has tested positive for the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). He wishes to make his case known as an example of the COVID-19 reality and the importance of practicing aggressive social distancing. As Dr. Saag will share, he was exposed on a family visit to New York City. Dr. Saag and UAB are taking precautionary measures to promote a safe environment, and we will diligently work with health department officials to identify and notify anyone who may have been exposed.

    Please follow Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and UAB guidance to protect yourself and others, including social distancing and good hygiene. If you have symptoms, call your health care provider BEFORE going to the doctor, and if you feel sick STAY HOME.

    • UAB Student Health Services: 205-934-3580
    • UAB Employee Health: 205-934-3675 from 6:30 a.m. - 5 p.m. Monday-Friday
    • After hours/weekends, call 205-934-3411 and ask them to page the nurse on call

    UAB is fully prepared to safely isolate and care for patients with infectious diseases, and we have taken aggressive action to slow the spread of coronavirus, including:

    • a move to online/distance learning
    • work-from-home for thousands of employees
    • closing buildings and cancelling events

    Please take care of yourself and each other.

    Limited University Business Operations Sunday, March 15 at 3 p.m.

    THE FOLLOWING IS FOR WORKGROUP A

    CLICK HERE TO ACCESS INSTRUCTIONS FOR WORKGROUP C

    USE THE EMPLOYEE WORKFORCE APP TO CHECK YOUR WORKGROUP

    • The following information about a limited business model applies ONLY to Workgroup A.
    • Faculty (Workgroup F) are asked to work remotely IF POSSIBLE (e.g., if you are instructing online, do so from your home, not campus), and come to campus only if required (e.g., direct patient care or research responsibilities that require a physical presence on campus). If you have questions, consult your supervisor.
    • Instructions and updates for employees in Workgroup C will be forthcoming from the UAB Health System and School of Medicine. These forthcoming updates will also address UAB employees at Children’s of Alabama.
    • UAB Hospital never closes and continues to prepare to safely isolate and care for COVID-19 patients.

    UAB is complex. Changes to work schedules mean different things to employees and can be confusing. If you have questions about the following guidance, please ask your supervisor or HR contact.

    UAB faculty and staff (including student employees/workers),

    Late Friday, a state of emergency was declared for Alabama and the nation to address the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. This announcement — which includes the closing of K-12 schools statewide starting Wednesday at 5 p.m. and relaxing absentee policies in some schools for the beginning of the week — has prompted concerns and questions about UAB policies that address remote work, essential staffing and child care issues.

    With guidance from Human Resources, leaders across the university have been working to assess resources and staffing needs, and will be moving to a limited business model. Based on the latest COVID-19 developments and the need to minimize in-person contact, UAB (university) will begin transitioning to a limited business model for employees in Workgroup A starting Monday, March 16, to be fully implemented by 5 p.m. The limited business model will be in place for at least 14 days starting March 17.

    Again, the following information about a limited business model applies ONLY to Workgroup A. Faculty (Workgroup F) are asked to work remotely IF POSSIBLE (e.g., if you are instructing online, do so from your home, not campus), and come to campus only if required (e.g., direct patient care or research responsibilities that require a physical presence on campus). If you have questions, consult with your supervisor. Instructions and updates for employees in Workgroup C and those at Children’s of Alabama will be forthcoming from the UAB Health System and School of Medicine.

    This limited business model identifies employees in Workgroup A who are:

    • needed to continue work in-person (Limited Business Model Workgroup A, Group 1)
    • needed to continue work but can do so from home (Limited Business Model Workgroup A, Group 2)
    • not needed to work during a time of limited business (Limited Business Model Workgroup A, Group 3)

    NOTE: Unit leaders/supervisors will assign and communicate group assignments within Workgroup A.

    Early data suggests a limited business model may reduce the presence of on-site university employees by as much as 75 percent while maintaining functions critical to the UAB mission. It is important to remember that UAB Hospital never closes and continues to prepare to safely isolate and care for COVID-19 patients.

    At this time, a limited business model is in the best interests of the health and safety of our students, faculty and staff, and is an important community service to minimize COVID-19 spread. During this time, it is vital that everyone in every group practices aggressive and meaningful social distancing, as well as proper hygiene to avoid contracting or spreading COVID-19. If you experience symptoms, call before you go to the doctor. Please call Employee Health or call UAB Medicine 4YOU at 205-934-9999.

    How will limited business operations work?

    Employees are assigned to the appropriate group by their unit leadership/supervisor and should follow supervisor instructions.

    Workgroup A, Group 1 will report to work as normal; Workgroup A, Group 2 will stay home and continue to work; and Workgroup A, Group 3 will not work. Supervisors determine which positions and employees are suitable for telecommuting, not the individual employees themselves.

    • Workgroup A, Group 1 will report to work as normal (unless you are sick or have been in immediate contact with a person known to have COVID-19 — see employee coronavirus health resources).
      • Maintain social distance and good hygiene. Utilize phone calls and virtual meetings as much as possible (even for small groups). Any gatherings of more than 25 people will require approval from a dean, vice president or AVP.
      • Supervisors should make every effort to not include student-employees in Workgroup A, Group 1 for on-campus work. If a supervisor thinks a student’s role is essential, approval must be granted by HR before a student is assigned to Workgroup A, Group 1.
    • Workgroup A, Group 2 will stay home and continue to work (as soon as possible but in effect no later than 5 p.m. Monday, March 16). If you do not need to return to campus, don’t. Also, do not return to campus if you are sick. See employee coronavirus health resources for guidance if you think you may have symptoms.
      • If needed, Monday, March 16, can be used to prepare to effectively work from home. If you need to go to campus to get essential items (e.g., laptop or desktop computer, supplies) to make working from home possible, coordinate with your supervisor to stagger coming to campus with others to limit contact with others.
      • Carefully read the UAB Temporary Telecommuting Guidance, sign the Temporary Telecommuting Agreement and send to your supervisor (scan or digital photo is OK), then forward to your HR representative.

        The temporary telecommuting agreement and guidelines were established as part of UAB’s efforts to support business continuity across campus. They are temporary and should not be confused with UAB’s standard telecommuting agreement and guidelines. Highlights of the agreement include:
        • Supervisors determine which positions and employees are suitable for telecommuting, not the individual employees themselves.
        • The temporary telecommuting agreement can be modified or terminated at any time, especially if operational needs warrant the change.
        • Employees should understand obligations regarding securing UAB records and transmitting information (e.g., sensitive information related to student records, patient privacy, intellectual property, etc.).
        • Employees are responsible for establishing an appropriate work environment, meeting productivity and service goals required by management, keeping and reporting time worked, and communicating in the appropriate manner and frequency.

      • Rather than forwarding your work phone to your cellphone, please change your outgoing voicemail message on your work phone to instruct callers to call your cellphone directly. This will alleviate capacity constraints we would face if too many work phones are forwarded.
      • Utilize available resources to set up remote working capabilities.
        • Academic Continuity Plan
        • Remote Working Technology Toolkit
        • Teaching Remotely at UAB
        • Consult www.uab.edu/it/home/remote-work, or if you need additional help, contact AskIT online at 205-996-5555 or at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.u for IT needs.
      • Your group assignment is subject to change if business needs arise.

    Working from home can be challenging. For the short- and long-term health of our institution and our vital mission, managing those challenges to remain productive is imperative. Communicate with your supervisor and/or speak with your Human Resources representative for guidance.

    • Workgroup A, Group 3 will not work (after being notified of your group assignment by your supervisor).
      • Unfortunately, the COVID-19 pandemic makes it necessary to limit on-campus personnel to only those whose functions are imperative during limited business operations — and not all functions can be done remotely or are required under extreme circumstances.
      • Workgroup A, Group 3 employees will be paid during the initial 14-day limited business period. In the event of a prolonged disruption, leadership will work with all sources (federal, state, etc.) in an effort to continue financial support of our employees. Further, UAB Leadership is exploring opportunities — including possible use of the Benevolent Fund — to financially help employees who encounter hardships due to the suspension of work IF limited business lasts longer than two weeks.
      • If you need to go to campus to get critical personal belongings you must have during the next two weeks, coordinate with your supervisor for approval and to stagger timing with others to minimize personal contact.
      • Your group assignment is subject to change if business needs arise.

    This unprecedented and fluid event will not be easy on anyone. As we adjust our work lives while managing concern for our loved ones and community, challenges will be significant. Employees across the United States and beyond are concerned about job security and financial stability. UAB — working within the framework of the proactive COVID-19 planning led by The University of Alabama System — will maintain health and safety as our top priority while we work to minimize disruptions for our most important asset, our people. We are committed to making prudent decisions and communicating regularly.

    Please take care of yourself and each other as much as possible. Utilize Employee Health, as well as free services available through the Employee Assistance Counseling Center. If you would like to donate to help students, faculty and staff with COVID-19 related hardships, or if you need to inquire about help, please contact the Benevolent Fund.

    Faculty and Staff Resources and Business Planning Friday, March 13 at 5 p.m.

    The fast-moving and dynamic nature of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak has led to many uncertainties and questions. This is not unique to UAB, universities or health systems. We are glad the University of Alabama System took decisive action as part of a proactive planning process to promote health and safety on our campus.

    As we work to operationalize the change, we may not have all the answers immediately. But a very dedicated team is committed to reducing uncertainties as much and as quickly as possible. Ultimately, we want to minimize disruption to the lives of our campus community while keeping health and safety our top priority.

    A great deal of planning has taken place, and many questions have been answered. Please take the time to review the information that is available – including resources, communications and frequently asked questions – at www.uab.edu/coronavirus. Some resources found at this central hub include:

    As you know, we are shifting to online and alternative learning after spring break. Additional preparations are underway as we monitor the outbreak. Business operations are being maintained at this time (i.e., faculty and staff are asked to report to work), but we may need to make additional adjustments in the interest of health and safety. At this time, student workers/employees/interns who remain on campus and want to continue working may be able to maintain their normal work schedule. Managers are asked to be understanding of student-employees’ circumstances. Ultimately, circumstances will vary, and student-employees should speak with their supervisor/coordinating instructor who can consult leadership on a case-by-case basis as necessary.

    In the event normal business operations are altered, Human Resources is working with leaders across campus to explore – for example – job functions that can take place in a remote setting off campus to promote social distancing.

    In the meantime, units on campus are encouraged to test remote working capabilities on a limited basis with some faculty and staff working from home to help identify challenges and opportunities, should a more comprehensive limited business plan be implemented. UAB Telecommuting Agreement

    Logistical changes – including limiting access to some facilities and closing some university functions – are being considered and will be communicated as soon as details are clear. While student access will be limited, all academic buildings will remain open to faculty and staff.

    Please continue to monitor your email for updates, as well as visit www.uab.edu/coronavirus. In the meantime, please take care of yourself and each other, and utilize services of Employee Health and the Employee Assistance Counseling Center (EACC FAQ at uab.edu/coronavirus).

    UAB Transition to Online or Alternative Instruction Thursday, March 12 at 5:30 p.m.

    Based on recent developments, discussions with leadership on University of Alabama System campuses and with other institutions, and advice of the University of Alabama System Task Force, the UA System is making immediate preparations to transition to on-line or alternate instruction for all academic courses to protect the health and safety of our communities. This policy will be re-evaluated on or before Monday, April 6, 2020.

    Each campus will keep faculty, staff and students updated electronically on individualized plans, timelines and specific changes as soon as possible.

    • UAB is scheduled for Spring Break the week of March 16-20. UAB’s Spring Break will be extended through at least March 24. Each campus will notify students, faculty and staff when the semester will resume.
    • Following Spring Break, UAB students should not return to campus and will continue their course work via distance learning subject to the following limited exceptions:
      • international or other students who do not have alternative accommodations;
      • students from areas without high-speed internet or other means of receiving remote instruction;
      • students with exceptional hardships, or academic, employment, clinical or research requirements that should be reviewed by the respective campuses on a case-by-case basis.
    • Arrangements will be made by the campuses to ensure any students remaining on campus have access to essential services (including Student Health Services/Counseling Services). Residence Hall and dining facilities will be open for students who remain on campus.
    • The UA System’s restriction on ALL non-essential international and domestic travel remains in place. All non-essential University meetings, gatherings and events are cancelled. Faculty, staff and students abroad and in international affiliated programs sponsored by third parties should contact their program administrators for information and further guidance.
    • These policies will be updated as circumstances require.

    Students leaving for spring break, please take essential belongings with you (e.g., class materials, textbooks, medications, electronics, valuables, etc.). If you have already left and will need to return, please alert Student Housing at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

    This policy applies only to academic classes. At this time, regular business operations will continue until further notice. Additional guidance will be forthcoming. Until further notice, faculty and staff should report to work.

    This is a quickly evolving situation, and we are committed to answering questions and supporting students, faculty and staff through this unprecedented event at UAB. There will be questions, and leaders across campus are working to answer them and make this transition as smooth as possible.

    Please continue to follow your emails, as well as updates at www.uab.edu/coronavirus.

    Information Regarding Spring Break Wednesday, March 11 at 4:30 p.m.

    Update to the UA System’s Interim Emergency Policy – Information Regarding Spring Break

    As are colleges and universities throughout North America, the University of Alabama System is taking precautionary measures regarding the health and safety of our students, faculty and staff.

    In preparation for the upcoming spring break March 16-20 at UA and UAB, with UAH’s break the following week (March 23-27), our current plans call for maintaining normal campus operations. Our guidance is based on the best information available to us at this time from local, state and federal agencies and health care professionals.

    As you consider plans for spring break, please keep these important points in mind to protect yourself and our community from the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.

    1. Our goal is to provide continuity and consistency for our students. If the situations in our communities change, we will transition to alternative modes of instruction (such as on-line classes) to protect the health and safety of System campuses. While current plans are to maintain regular schedules, it is possible that System campuses could move to alternative modes of instruction at some point this semester depending on the state of COVID-19 in Alabama. IF it becomes necessary to cancel in-person classes, plan ahead to have what you need. When you leave for spring break, take essential belongings with you (e.g., class materials, textbooks, medications, electronics, valuables, etc.), in the event a transition to alternative modes of instruction becomes necessary.

    2. If you live on campus, are uncomfortable traveling, and prefer to stay on campus during spring break, we will provide you with accommodations. It is important that you notify us of your plans if you decide to remain on campus. At UAB, email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

    3. Everyone on our campuses should take extra care to follow personal hygiene instructions from the CDC:
      • Wash hands frequently, and avoid touching your face with unwashed hands.
      • Avoid sick people, avoid people if you are sick, and do not travel if you are sick.
      • Clean and disinfect surfaces, and cover your cough or sneeze with a sleeve or tissue.
      • Protect against the flu by getting the flu vaccine. The flu vaccine does not protect against COVID-19, but the flu is still circulating in the community at this time.
      • The CDC does not recommend the general public buy or wear masks in the United States.
      • If you have symptoms, call your health care provider BEFORE going to the doctor.

    4. Continue to be vigilant, plan ahead and protect against spreading viral illness. The following two maps are available to assist you with accurate information on affected areas:
    5. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Global Outbreak Map
      CDC United States Outbreak Map

    6. If you develop respiratory symptoms during spring break, or are exposed to an individual with or suspected of having COVID-19, then please DO NOT return to campus, and we will work with you to provide alternative arrangements for remote learning through the best available platforms. Students should contact their advisor or program head regarding academic concerns.

    7. We are continuously monitoring the situation, which could change at any time. We will notify you of updated information and policy changes on the UA System’s dedicated webpage.
    We want to remind everyone to please monitor your emails. The System’s previous advisories canceling international travel and discouraging any non-essential domestic travel remain in effect. Advisories and updates can be found at http://uasystem.edu/news/2020/02/ua-system-covid-19-updates/.

    Required Review of Domestic Travel, Events and Visitor(s) Wednesday, March 11 at 11:45 a.m.

    The novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak is evolving quickly, and the outbreak has required proactive leadership from the University of Alabama System to restrict international travel.

    There are some decisions — based on the current status of the outbreak and recent guidance from the UA System — that UAB leadership should make based on specific potential risks and circumstances. Decisions must be made regarding university-sponsored domestic travel, events and visitors to campus.

    Any faculty or staff member sponsoring, organizing or otherwise leading university-sponsored or university-hosted travel, events or visitors should alert your leadership as soon as possible. That leader will determine if the activity is essential or non-essential, and if it poses a risk to the health and safety of the campus community:

    • Non-essential Domestic Travel (UA System Domestic Travel Advisory): Non-essential domestic travel is discouraged at this time. A decision must be made as to whether the university-sponsored domestic travel is essential or non-essential.
    • Events/Visitor(s) to Campus: A decision must be made as to whether the event or visitor on campus (e.g., speakers, conferences, orientations, seminars, performances, competition) carries potential risks and whether the event/visit can take place.

    Leaders responsible to make decisions in each area include:
    • Deans will review activities in schools and colleges
    • VPs and/or AVPs will review activities for administrative units (each VP will determine the appropriate starting point for his or her unit)
    • Athletic administrators will review activities in Athletics

    Decisions should be based on the relative risk of the travel or visitor(s), understanding that our top priority as an institution is the health and safety of our campus community. If the dean, AVP or athletic administrator is the event sponsor, the determination for that event should be made by his or her supervisor so the decision is not made by someone personally invested in the organization of the event.

    Questions to ask when considering the necessity of the travel or visitor(s) include:

    • Can you explain why the travel/visitor(s) is essential?
    • Can the travel/visitor(s) be postponed?
    • Can the purpose of the travel/visitor(s) be accomplished in another way (e.g., virtually)?
    • Does the size of the event/number of attendees create too much risk?
    • Do the attendees/visitor(s) create too much risk (e.g., coming from a domestic or international location with significant COVID-19 spread)?

    UA System and UAB leaders will continue to monitor the situation closely and provide additional or revised guidance as the situation evolves. Thank you for your attention to this important matter.

    NEW Coronavirus (COVID-19) Travel Advisory Monday, March 9 at 6:30 p.m.

    The University of Alabama System continues to closely monitor the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak. Today System officials issued guidance advising against any non-essential domestic travel at this time, particularly to large conferences with attendees from multiple states or locations that have declared a state of emergency due to the virus.

    Faculty, staff and students on UA System campuses are encouraged to use good judgment when making travel decisions and work with campus administration to evaluate alternative methods of remote participation such as live-streaming of conference sessions and meetings.

    The UA System advisory also states: “Students, faculty and staff who have concerns about being exposed to the virus while traveling should not be required to travel. Likewise, any student, faculty or staff member who elects not to attend a previously scheduled event due to those concerns should not be disciplined.” Read the full advisory here.

    The UA System website will continue to be a centralized source for updated information on the virus outbreak, policies and other guidance (http://uasystem.edu/news/2020/02/ua-system-covid-19-updates/). Learn more about COVID-19 and UAB at www.uab.edu/coronavirus. Access information about UAB coronavirus travel restriction reimbursements.

    Coronavirus Preparedness Updates and Resources Wednesday, March 4 at 3:30 p.m.

    Email from President Ray L. Watts and Health System CEO Will Ferniany: Coronavirus Preparedness Updates and Resources as of March 4, 2020

    *NOTE: The following email was sent March 4, 2020 at 3:30 p.m. as part of a collaborative communications effort led by the University of Alabama System in the interest of health and safety on the three System campuses. Last week Chancellor Finis St. John appointed a COVID-19 Communications and Policy Task Force to address the 2019 Corona virus. The task force, comprised of UA System medical researchers, faculty and staff, is continuously monitoring public health risks posed by the outbreak. Subsequently, a comprehensive University of Alabama System Interim Emergency Policy was developed regarding the 2019 Coronavirus. The policy will be updated as circumstances warrant.

    UAB Community,

    Today you received an email about new travel restrictions, including the CANCELATION of all university-sponsored international travel in March. Travel outside the United States after March is ON HOLD and will be addressed as soon as possible. Details can be found on the UAB Updates tab of www.uab.edu/coronavirus, an online resource that provides important information, tips and resources as we safeguard our community and prepare for the likely appearance of novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in Alabama. If you have not read that communication, please do so in the interest of your health and safety, and that of our community.

    While there are no known cases of COVID-19 in Alabama at the time of this communication, there are confirmed cases in Florida and Georgia, and it could be seen in Alabama soon. COVID-19 appears to cause mild illness in the majority of those infected but can be fatal. Learn more at www.uab.edu/coronavirus.

    The CDC predicts possible significant disruptions to daily life in the United States. While we cannot predict whether our community will be affected in a small or big way, we want to be prepared for even extreme outcomes.

    UAB officials are and have been very active in monitoring the quickly evolving outbreak with infectious disease and public health experts and taking aggressive steps to prepare for possible scenarios. University and Health System emergency management professionals have convened broad and targeted groups to review the plans to address an infectious disease outbreak and apply it to the specific COVID-19 threat.

    Units across campus have been taking steps to prepare for eventualities. For example:

    • First and foremost, medical providers at the University and Health System are trained to properly care for patients with infectious diseases and have plans in place to safely care for COVID-19 patients.
    • UAB launched www.uab.edu/coronavirus as a resource to communicate news and updates, as well as tips to stay healthy and prepare. Information will be maintained there.
    • UAB Facilities is increasing the frequency of cleaning and disinfecting areas like bathrooms, entryways, door handles, railings and elevator buttons.
    • From Campus Housing and Dining to Environmental Health and Safety, to Hospital Supply Chain, procurement officials have assessed what supplies are needed now and what supplies would be needed if disruptions become extreme.
    • Plans to manage and conserve supplies (e.g., plans to prioritize, limit and/or reuse certain supplies to avoid a shortage if the duration of disruptions become significant) are being reviewed and updated based on possible COVID-19 scenarios.
    • Offices that support international travel for students, faculty and staff are supporting unexpected changes in travel plans and programs to minimize disruptions as much as possible while maintaining health and safety.
    • Health care professionals in Student and Employee Health have enacted protocols to monitor, guide and report the status of those returning from international destinations in partnership with the Alabama Department of Public Health.
    • Information Technology, the Office of the Provost, and school and college deans are taking steps to protect our ability to maintain our academic mission while employing social distancing techniques or quarantine measures. This planning includes addressing the technical and logistical infrastructure that would allow for classes to continue if they eventually need to move online in Canvas.
    • Planning and preparations are also taking place to protect our vital research mission. Research Administration leadership is updating business continuity plans based on COVID-19 and will continue to monitor and prepare to protect research activities as much as possible if disruptions occur.
    • Human Resources is consulting with leadership to provide guidance regarding the possible future need for work-from-home scenarios.
    • Areas have been identified where facilities can be repurposed to safely manage patient flow should an influx of COVID-19 patients take place.
    • We are encouraging patients with concerning symptoms to call their health care provider before going to the doctor, and our Emergency Department is screening incoming patients just outside the entrance to the Emergency Department to decrease possible exposure to others.

    These are just a few examples of steps being taken. Units across campus will continue to update their specific plans to protect each other and our community and continue to deliver essential services. Disruptions — small or large — may be inevitable; but our goal is to minimize the effect on you — our students, faculty and staff — as well as the education, research, innovation and economic development, patient care, and community service pillars of our mission.

    Please continue to look to your emails and www.uab.edu/coronavirus for important updates. At UAB, we are fortunate to have many experts in epidemiology and the prevention and treatment of infectious diseases to guide us. Know that our top priority will remain the continued health and safety of our UAB community.

    Please continue to be vigilant, plan ahead and protect against spreading viral illness:

    • Wash hands frequently and avoid touching your face with unwashed hands.
    • Avoid sick people, avoid people if you are sick, and do not travel if you are sick.
    • Clean and disinfect surfaces and cover your cough or sneeze with a sleeve or tissue.
    • Protect against the flu by getting the flu vaccine. The flu vaccine does not protect against COVID-19, but the flu is still circulating in the community at this time.
    • The CDC does not recommend the general public buy or wear masks in the United States.
    • If you have symptoms, call your health care provider BEFORE going to the doctor:
      • Students should call UAB Health Services at 205-934-3580.
      • UAB employees should call UAB Employee Health at 205-934-3675 from 6:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. After hours and on weekends, call the UAB Call Center at 205-934-3411 and ask them to page the needlestick/exposure nurse on call.

    More information and tips can be found at www.uab.edu/coronavirus. UAB medicine employees can go to www.oneuabmedicine.org for Health System specific updates.

    Sincerely,

    Ray L. Watts
    President

    Will Ferniany
    Health System CEO

    NEW Coronavirus (COVID-19) Travel Restrictions and Updates Wednesday, March 4 at 1:30 p.m.

    Information about UAB coronavirus travel restriction reimbursements

    NEW Coronavirus (COVID-19) Travel Restrictions and Updates

    Effective immediately, UAB is canceling all university-sponsored international travel that is scheduled to depart in the month of March. Faculty, staff and students MAY NOT TRAVEL anywhere outside the United States for university business or academic purposes (“university-sponsored travel”), including but not limited to study abroad or other international academic work, research or grant activity, internships, conferences or presentations, teaching or training, performances, recruiting, or athletic competitions.

    Additionally, university-sponsored travel outside of the United States that is scheduled to depart after the month of March is suspended effective immediately. Regarding future university-sponsored travel outside of the United States beyond March, this is a complex decision that is based on new and evolving information. Decisions on those future programs are ON HOLD and will be addressed as soon as possible. Please read the full updated interim policy issued by the University of Alabama System.

    Due to the expanding global coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, the significant risk of exposure during international travel, and guidance from experts in public health and infectious disease, we expect full cooperation and compliance with this Updated Interim Policy to maintain a safe and healthy environment for everyone. Faculty, staff, students, and visiting students and scholars who fail to comply with this policy may be subject to disciplinary action.

    We recognize the significance of these measures to members of our campus community and are committed to providing support. Our number one priority is the health and safety of our campus and community. Students with questions about travel should contact the Office of Education Abroad at 205-975-6611 (after hours 205-329-0019) or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. Faculty, staff and visiting research scholars should contact the Office of Sponsored International Programs at 205-975-2438 (after hours 205-789-5212) or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.. These offices are available to provide guidance and assistance to our travelers, in addition to providing resources through our System travel provider, International SOS.

    While we cannot restrict individuals’ travel for personal business or affiliate programs (i.e., travel that is not university-sponsored but related to academic or business pursuits — e.g., travel through another institution or program), the UA System strongly encourages students, faculty and staff to follow CDC travel watches, alerts and warnings, and be aware of additional CDC and State Department updates. The global situation is rapidly evolving, and risk of acquiring COVID-19 may change abruptly. Please be mindful of potential associated risks of disruptions to reentry to the United States, including possible quarantine.

    Any and all travelers returning to the United States or coming to the United States to participate in university-sponsored business or programs must comply with all U.S. re-entry, quarantine, self-isolation or self-monitoring requirements in place before returning to or engaging with the university community. Travelers must provide verification from the Alabama Department of Public Health or their health provider confirming they have completed the appropriate monitoring process. To the extent a traveler is monitored or otherwise reporting to the university during any monitoring period, the traveler must receive express approval from the university in order to return to the university community. Additional detail is available in the updated interim policy.

    Returning travelers should follow guidance provided by the Alabama Department of Public Health for returning travelers on the ADPH website. Any traveler should be aware of CDC Travel Health Notices and observe CDC travel precautions for COVID-19.

    We understand that many members of our community may have upcoming spring break travel, conferences or summer study abroad plans that this policy may affect. We further understand that the longer the travel restrictions remain in place, more questions will arise related to future plans for international travel. To assess the impact of the virus on faculty, staff and students, a dedicated team composed of members from throughout the UA System, including our clinical and infection prevention experts, is monitoring the outbreak and utilizing guidance from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the World Health Organization, and international governments and health agencies. Administrators at each campus are continuously evaluating and receiving advice on potential impacts and will provide future information and guidance.

    While there are no known cases of COVID-19 in Alabama at the time of this communication, there are confirmed cases in Florida and Georgia, and it could be seen in Alabama soon.

    Please continue to be vigilant, plan ahead and protect against spreading viral illness:

    • Wash hands frequently, and avoid touching your face with unwashed hands.
    • Avoid sick people, avoid people if you are sick, and do not travel if you are sick.
    • Clean and disinfect surfaces, and cover your cough or sneeze with a sleeve or tissue.
    • Protect against the flu by getting the flu vaccine. The flu vaccine does not protect against COVID-19, but the flu poses an active health threat in Alabama at this time.
    • If you have symptoms, call your health care provider BEFORE going to the doctor:
      • Students should call UAB Student Health Services at 205-934-3580.
      • UAB employees should call UAB Employee Health at 205-934-3675 from 6:30 a.m.-5 p.m. Monday-Friday. After hours and on weekends, call the UAB Call Center at 205-934-3411 and ask them to page the needlestick/exposure nurse on-call.