COVID-19: Dordt University Update

COVID-19: Dordt University Update

Campus Community,

Thank you for your prayers as Dordt University makes decisions regarding how to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. We know that God has control of all things, including what the future holds for our world during this epidemic.

The Dordt leadership team has made the decision that we will not resume on-campus instruction on Monday, April 13, as previously communicated. Rather, as of today, Dordt will extend online instruction to the end of the spring semester.

We came to this decision after careful consideration of many factors. For example, over the last week, COVID-19 cases have increased nationwide and in the state of Iowa. We also determined that many Dordt students would not be able to readily return to campus, as they would need to self-quarantine for 14 days upon their return. It is likely that more than one-third of the student body could not return to campus due to distance or expense. The health and safety of Dordt students and our community is of utmost importance to us.

Additionally, and as communicated earlier, Dordt’s investment in online education over the past three years means that we are convinced that the student experience through this time will be strong. Certainly, we continue to affirm that not all of the educational experience at Dordt is academic—and we look forward to the time when we can once again enhance the academic quality with the face-to-face emotional, social, and co-curricular aspects of the Dordt experience. Yet, we are certain that the educational outcomes of this semester can be completed through a non-residential approach while we balance the health needs of our broader culture.

Dordt University will host commencement at 11 a.m. CDT on Friday, May 8. We anticipate this will be a virtual experience, and we will provide additional information in the coming weeks. We will follow the academic calendar as previously scheduled through the end of the academic year. All other spring semester events are postponed or canceled. Dordt will continue to post updates on dordt.edu/coronavirus.

Further, Dordt’s campus is closed to the community. Only current employees and permitted students are allowed on Dordt’s campus. Please call ahead at (712) 722-6000 if you need to connect with a department. Office staff will continue to provide services to students and constituents, whether remotely or in-person.

Information about summer events will be forthcoming. At this point, we still plan to hold Dordt Discovery Days, which is scheduled for late June. 

We continue to pray for the Dordt student who tested positive for COVID-19 while at her home in Canada. We are grateful that she is feeling better and is on the road to recovery.

In the past few weeks, I’ve been sustained by many things, including classic hymns—and I hope that these words help give you hope in the days ahead:

How firm a foundation, ye saints of the Lord,

Is laid for your faith in his excellent word!

What more can he say than to you he hath said,

To you who for refuge to Jesus have fled?

 

Fear not, I am with thee, O be not dismayed,

For I am thy God, and will still give thee aid;

I’ll strengthen thee, help thee, and cause thee to stand,

Upheld by my righteous, omnipotent hand.

 

When through the deep waters I call thee to go,

The rivers of sorrow shall not overflow;

For I will be with thee, thy troubles to bless,

And sanctify to thee thy deepest distress.

 

Sincerely,

Erik Hoekstra

President

Dordt University