On Friday evening, University Chancellor Philip DiStefano announced in a message to the university community, that the University of Colorado Boulder would start the spring semester online.
DiStefano said that the spring semester would still begin on Jan. 10, but would be online for the first two weeks of the semester.
University officials made the decisions immediately following the worst of the two major Boulder County fires.
“Campus leadership met today in the wake of yesterday’s fires. We felt it was important to give students as much time as possible to adjust travel plans,” said university spokesperson Andrew Sorensen.
The message stressed that the university wanted to prioritize community members who have been impacted by the Marshall and Middle Fork fires, as well as their concerns about the increase of COVID-19 cases in Boulder County.
“As we near the start of the semester, we ask our campus community to act with compassion. Several hundred CU Boulder faculty, staff and students live in the evacuation areas and have not been able to return to their homes yet. They may not know if their homes are still standing,” DiStefano said.
DiStefano said that rates for room and board would be cut, as university residence halls would stay closed until the 21st.
“Students living in off-campus housing are strongly encouraged to delay their return to the Boulder area until Jan. 21, in advance of the start of in-person classes,” the message read.
On Tuesday, Jan. 4, an article in CU Boulder Today said that “more than 700 (CU Boulder) employees and more than 600 students live in areas that were evacuated.”
This is a developing story and will be updated.
Contact CU Independent Managing Editor Henry Larson at firstname.lastname@example.org.