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July 31, 2020

While we stay laser focused on how to safely reopen, it’s important to remember our core mission. 

Tomorrow, CMU will celebrate commencement and another class of Mavericks will graduateWhile the ceremonies’ format is different — attendance is restricted, social distancing and mask wearing are required — we should consider that hosting a graduation ceremony is a symbolic victory over the coronavirus. Changing our approach and behavior without stopping life is no small feat. This event is made possible by the humility and understanding of parents and students, and the best efforts of faculty and academic leaders to plan and organize a ceremony within the limitations before us.  

As President, I am proud.  

We are trying to communicate our plans and progress to everyone who is interested. From hosting telephone town hall meetings with thousands of participants to smaller online gatherings with just twenty or so, our effort is to meet people where they are and do all we can to ensure CMU community members know what we are doing, and, more importantly, why we are doing it.   

This week, Dr. Amy Bronson and CMU Foundation CEO Liz Meyer joined me in a live social media event for CMU alumni and donors. You can see a recording on the Alumni Association Facebook page 

We continue to host updates via Facebook Live. Plans are underway for another next week (details to come) and you can view Thursday’s on our primary Facebook site 

CMU also received word there will be fall athletics albeit delayed. Some folks are worried sports just won’t be the same without spectators. We are taking the approach that this season is an opportunity for us to continue to improve our live-streaming and video production skills to ensure fans can cheer on CMU athletics from their laptopsphonestablets, or televisions 

Saving the best for last. 

This week was a great step forward in our COVID-19 response. Our virus testing, symptom checking, and virus tracing began with remarkable success. The testing center on campus was full and continues to test students, faculty, and staff daily. The campus community received an email from our co-chairs this afternoon detailing this, I will repeat: If you have not signed up for testing, please do so immediately through our testing partner  

Every week updates are made to the CMU COVID-19 website. This site is among the best resources for parents, students and employees who have questions about what to do as you prepare for return to campus. We have added details on what to expect after your COVID-19 test and details about our contact tracing program led by some amazing members of our faculty.  And, of course, the FAQs are updated daily as we listen to your feedback. Please check in regularly, and if you don’t see an answer to your question, reach out to us at 

The countdown continues and my excitement grows in anticipation of once again seeing the students who will shortly remind us of the importance of what we do at CMU.  


Tim Foster, President