HR - Employee Update

The following email was sent from Human Resources to all employees on March 13, 2020.

USD is committed to supporting our dedicated and talented workforce during extraordinary circumstances including the current Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19). As announced by President Harris yesterday, the University has mandated campus-wide remote teaching effective March 23, 2020, and our residential students are in the process of relocating off campus, with limited exceptions. Although we are making academic and residential changes, the University remains open and operations continue with appropriate measures to protect the health of the community. 

We recognize the work of many employees requires them to be on campus to support the academic mission and activities of the University. Specifically, all employees will play a critical role in helping the University transition to remote learning, helping our residential population relocate off campus, and keeping the University running. Employees who are well are expected to work their regularly scheduled hours at this time. 

As previously announced, employees age 60 or older or employees with chronic diseases at higher risk may choose to work from home, following supervisor approval. Employees who are not in the above-mentioned groups but wish to explore working remotely should speak with their supervisor to determine if working remotely is appropriate. Employees and supervisors who have questions can contact the Employee Relations team in Human Resources at (619) 260-4594. We have resources and guidelines available for employees and supervisors on working remotely. Resources for employees who have been approved by their supervisor to work remotely should set up their access for VPN and call forwarding. 

For non-exempt/hourly staff whose job functions cannot be performed remotely, and for whom there are no alternate assignments or work available, USD will provide emergency-related paid excused absences to ensure pay continuity. Employees should work directly with their supervisors to determine their eligibility and if other work assignments are available. If you meet the above-mentioned criteria, please see these additional details.

If your child’s school or daycare is closed, you may work remotely if your job responsibilities are compatible with doing so and if the arrangement is approved by your supervisor. However, depending on the age of your child, you may not be able to effectively work while at home due to caregiving responsibilities; please be sure to discuss this with your direct supervisor. Upon supervisor approval, please see these additional details.

Student employees who wish to continue their campus employment should speak with their supervisors to determine business necessity in their area. Student employees may need to have alternate work assignments to assist the University during our transition time and changing operations. 

Employees who are sick should stay home and utilize sick time.  

We understand these major changes and the ongoing uncertainty can create difficult decisions for you, and your mental health is just as important as your physical health. The Employee Assistance Program is available to help you manage your personal wellness during this time. 

If you are unsure about whether you should come to work, contact your supervisor and/or the Employee Relations team in Human Resources at 619-260-4594 for guidance. 


Nicki Schuessler Veloz, PhD
Director of Title IX, EEO and Employee Relations