Spring 2021 Reopening Announcement

November 9, 2020

Dear MICA Community:

We write today to share the College’s most current plans for the Spring 2021 semester.

First, these plans are a testament to the collaboration, creativity, and leadership of many dedicated faculty, staff, and students. We recognize and deeply appreciate the remarkable flexibility and commitment that you have shown. You have demonstrated resourcefulness and innovation in teaching and learning, civic engagement, production and remote fabrication, new platforms for communications, virtual community building, enhancements to campus infrastructure, and deep collaboration in the development of a unified MICA Social Agreement for our entire community, among other accomplishments. It has been an honor to work with all of you and to witness your dedication to MICA and to the well-being and future of our community.

Recognizing the ever-evolving public health conditions, MICA’s re-opening plan for Spring 2021 is flexible, science-based, and prioritizes the health and safety of our community above all. At its core, it focuses on fully online/remote instruction with limited on-campus access to shops and studios for graduate students and undergraduate seniors, as well as enhanced options for remote making, pickup, and delivery and the possibility of highly limited in-person curricular and co-curricular engagements for all students. Residence halls will be open with a maximum capacity of two students per apartment; any MICA student may apply for housing.

The full plan is available for review on the Spring Reopening website. We encourage you to visit it, familiarize yourself with the information, and give feedback via the site’s feedback form. While we’ve provided as detailed information as is currently possible, the site is intended to be an initial overview of the major plan areas and current decisions. There will be a Student Voice Association (SVA) Town Hall meeting on Friday, November 13, where students will have an opportunity to ask questions and discuss the Spring 2021 plans with campus leaders. The Faculty Assembly will consider its preferred forum to discuss the Spring reopening plan at its meeting this Wednesday, November 11. We will be working with the Staff Empowerment Council (SEC) to develop information sessions for Staff in the near future.

The pandemic’s current trajectory is concerning and we will continue to monitor it through the winter—updating and refining the information on the Spring Reopening website as necessary. A final decision on Spring reopening will be made in the first half of January in alignment with our national, local, and institutional public health context.

As our planning work for the Spring semester will continue throughout the Fall, we will regularly inform the MICA community through RECAP—the College’s official communication for AY2021 planning, progress, and emergent ideas—and through regular meetings with faculty, staff, and student leadership groups and R5 work groups.

As mentioned previously, you are encouraged to provide feedback through the Reopening website for inclusion in follow-up communications.

Thank you again for your continued commitment, creativity, and resilience. We look forward to a safe and successful Spring semester.

Samuel Hoi, President
David Bogen, Provost