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COVID-19 Information and Updates

Department Updates


UTSI Return To Work Plan

Letter from the Office of the Provost

UTSI Faculty Members,

I have received questions regarding what to expect in the classroom this Fall when we return to a new version of normalcy. Around 18 June 2020, all instructors should have received the below message from the Provost and Senior Vice Chancellor John Zomchick. This message provides a link to a Canvas training course for instructors regarding changes to expect when classes resume in the Fall. Though this training is UTK specific, some of the changes discussed in the training will be implemented on the UTSI campus. Those changes are as follows:

  1. Face masks will be worn by instructors and students in the classroom. Face shields will be available for those that desire the added protection and can be requested from the UTSI Safety Office.
  2. Social distancing will be observed. Imagine a 6’ box around chairs and a 6’ instructor area – as a result of this requirement, room occupancy will be cut in half.
  3. Food and drink will not be allowed in the classrooms.
  4. It is recommended that seating areas are wiped down before and after class. PPE supplies will be provided near the entrances to the classrooms.
  5. Note: Though UTK is installing plexiglass in some of their classrooms, we do not intend on installing plexiglass at UTSI.

If you haven’t completed the Canvas training, it is encouraged that you complete the training prior to the start of the Fall term.

Please send any questions or concerns to, Safety and Health Coordinator at or Scott Van Zandbergen, UTSI COVID Coordinator at

Scott W. Van Zandbergen

UTSI COVID Coordinator

Office of the Provost

Letter from the Provost and Senior Vice Chancellor

Dear colleagues,

As we prepare for students to return in August, we have been developing new best practices and protective measures to help prevent the spread of COVID-19. We are asking all instructors to complete a training course focused on face-to-face teaching to help you implement these changes in your classrooms.

The training is accessible through Canvas and needs to be completed by August 1.

The practices we have developed are based on feedback from the Re-Imagining Fall Task Force, input from faculty, and advice from health professionals. The training will include details such as expectations for students, how classrooms will be arranged to achieve social distancing, use of face coverings, best practices in laboratory classroom settings, and how to integrate safety measures into your teaching practices.

We will offer remote teaching and learning options for students and instructors who are in high-risk populations or have family members who are. Instructors teaching remotely still may find the training valuable for awareness of the extensive safety measures taking place on campus.

We are deeply committed to keeping our campus community healthy while delivering the outstanding education that our students expect from us. We cannot do that without you. Thank you for your dedication to your work and to our students.

John Zomchick
Provost and Senior Vice Chancellor

Contact Us

Office of the Provost
527 Andy Holt Tower
Knoxville, TN 37996-0184
Phone: 865-974-2445

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