March 30, 2020
Dear faculty colleagues,
As we close our first full day of remote classes, I wanted to simply say thank you for all your efforts to adapt your classes to continue through our new reality. Since we made the difficult yet necessary decision to transition as many of our classes to remote learning formats as possible, our faculty members, teaching assistants, assistant instructors and staff members have worked tirelessly to prepare for today.
I have no doubts there will be bumps along the way during the first few days. Unforeseen issues to navigate. Kinks to work out. And we will do this together.
We have much to be proud of today. Here are a few statistics to provide context of the scale of your efforts.
- UT Austin generated 5.2 million meeting minutes in Zoom today by 3 p.m. with more than 157,000 participants.
- We shifted 9,076 face-to-face classes to remote learning, involving 49,048 students.
- Information and Technology Services (ITS) received and managed more than 300 student calls for technology support.
- Liberal Arts Information and Technology Services (LAITS), which is working to support faculty technology issues campus-wide, managed 89 faculty calls for support.
Please remember to be patient and kind to yourself. You and your families are dealing with a great deal of adversity right now, even as you care for your students and one another. If things don’t go exactly as planned, that is OK. You are doing your best, and for that I am enormously grateful. We will learn from this and improve. Talk to your peers, department chairs and mentors for advice and guidance.
Our strength lies in our collective ability to learn from and support one another to solve the problems that will arise. I will work with your deans and university leadership to do the same, so please know that we are actively pursuing areas where help is needed.
I cannot thank you enough for all you are doing. I am enormously proud of how the UT community is responding in this unprecedented time.
My deepest thanks and gratitude,