Updated: Sunday, February 22, 2021
After a careful assessment of campus safety and status of our community members, we have decided to resume normal operations tomorrow, Feb. 22.
- In-person, virtual and hybrid classes will resume.
- Individuals who normally work in person on campus may return to work.
- Individuals who usually work remotely should continue to do so.
At the same time, there are some students, faculty and staff who remain without water and Internet, and are still working to recover from the winter storms. Faculty and supervisors are encouraged to offer flexibility and understanding to those who are still struggling. Students should contact their professors, and faculty and staff should contact their supervisor or department chair with concerns.
While the boil order has been lifted for the Trinity campus, out of an abundance of caution we ask that individuals continue to consume only bottled or potable water while we flush lines and assess water quality, until further notice. If you are returning to campus tomorrow, please bring bottled drinking water with you. Additionally, you may visit Coates Student Center for individual bottles of water, or Mabee Dining Hall to fill up your own bottle or to pick up bottles of water.
Mabee Dining Hall, Einstein’s and Starbuck’s have been prioritized to assure clean water for drinking and food preparation. Faculty, staff and students should have no concerns about Dining Services’ ability to provide a safe dining experience in these locations.
A reminder to follow all ProtecTU guidelines as we continue to mitigate the threat of COVID on our campus. To that end, surveillance testing will resume this week and randomly selected individuals will receive email notification to sign up for a time.
Finally, should you arrive on campus and find a water leak or any damage in your office or classroom, please contact Facilities at 210-999-8413 as soon as possible.
While the worst of the event has passed, patience, flexibility, and understanding continue to be necessary as our colleagues and students move through the residual effects of the storm.
Until then, wishing everyone a safe and restful Sunday.
Updated: Saturday, February 20, 2021
We wanted to provide a brief update on the status of campus and the decision making process with regard to operations on Monday, 2/22.
So far, campus is faring well and conditions look favorable for reopening.
The Facilities team continues its great work restoring heat to buildings on upper campus, with their first focus on student and academic spaces.
As you may know, Coates Library and the Bell Center are open this weekend.
TUPD continues to inspect each building for leaks or other damage.
City Vista students who had relocated to hotels have returned to their apartments.
However, while power, heat, water and Internet have been restored on campus, this may not be the case for off-campus students, faculty and staff. As such, plans for Monday depend on three considerations:
We are concerned for the safety and comfort of our off-campus faculty, staff and students. As such, we are monitoring the broader campus community’s ability to work and learn on Monday.
We are watching the status of the San Antonio Water System’s (SAWS) boil-water order, as we need to ensure an adequate supply of potable water for living, learning and working on campus under such an order.
Many K-12 schools have yet to announce whether they will be open as normal on Monday. School and childcare closures will have a profound impact on much of our workforce.
We will continue to gather information throughout the day today and into tomorrow morning on these three considerations, at which time we will update you on our Monday plans. Please let us know if you have any questions or concerns about your ability to work or learn.
Continue to watch email and the website for updates, as we expect to make an announcement about Monday no later than noon tomorrow, Feb. 21.
We are proud and thankful for the way the Trinity community came together to support one another, and for today’s sunshine and warmer temperatures!
Be safe and be well.
Updated: Friday, February 19, 2021
We wanted to provide an update on the status of campus as we end the week. The human toll cannot be underestimated, as we shifted our emotional, physical and intellectual energy to finding ways to meet our most basic needs.
The good news is we appear to be approaching the last night of extreme cold, and with it we have encouraging news about the status of utilities on campus.
Director of Facilities Jim Baker reports that water pressure on campus appears to be improving. As such, he and his full team will be inspecting every residence hall and building on lower and upper campus as well as City Vista today to check for leaks and issues. Assuming any challenges found are resolvable and the water pressure sustains, our on-campus and City Vista students will be able to resume use of toilets and showers in their residences late today. As soon as the Bell Center can reopen for recreational use, you will receive an announcement. Facilities also will begin returning heat to all non-residential buildings, a process which takes some time.
We are fortunate campus has not lost power. ITS has worked non-stop to ensure Internet access on campus remains strong, though our normal redundancies are down due to pressures on service providers across the state.
Dining Services continues to prepare and serve hot, fresh meals to students at Mabee Hall, and thanks to donations acquired by Mike Bacon and the Development team, have set up water stations for students to ensure they have fresh drinking water.
Resoundingly, our Residential Life staff report that our students have been gracious, resilient, positive and creative as they endured water outages, cold temperatures and a closed campus. However, our students, like the rest of us, are exhausted. Once again, it’s important to call out the tireless work of our staff colleagues in Residential Life, Facilities, ITS, TUPD, and Dining Services.
The residual effect of the outages will have an extended impact on our operations. While we believe our campus will be safe and open on Monday, we must allow Facilities and ITS to complete their assessments today and into Saturday, as we endure one last hard freeze.
Please continue to check email for updates over the weekend, and visit Trinity’s winter weather alerts webpage to learn about emergency preparedness and resources, or visit gotu.us/emergency.
As a colleague recently described during this morning’s Crisis Management Team call: We have lost a week, and it's unrecoverable, but our compassion and sense of community are unflagging. Stay safe, and many thanks to all!
Updated: Thursday, February 18, 2021
It has been an exhausting week as we struggled to meet our most basic needs throughout a disaster wrapped inside a pandemic.
While the weather forecast indicates improving conditions by the weekend, the residual effects of the winter storm continue to impact our ability to fully function. Many continue to be without internet, water and power.
For Friday, February 19:
- All classes--virtual, hybrid and in-person, are canceled
- Faculty Assembly is canceled
- Faculty Senate P&T Celebration to be rescheduled
In addition, only essential staff will be asked to report to work, either remotely or on-campus, to assist with efforts to restore campus operations and prepare for next week. Supervisors will be in contact with those considered essential to operations. We realize that many are unable to work remotely due to internet, power or water interruptions. Therefore, anyone unable to work remotely will be paid admin leave. Non-essential staff (who record their time) should continue to do so as ADMIN.
We hope to be operational by Monday. However, we will continue to monitor conditions on and off campus and will provide updated direction regarding work and classes for Monday as soon as possible.
One important note: The redistributed spring break class holidays will not be repurposed for instructional days. Those holidays remain intact. Academic Affairs will share more about this topic with Department Chairs and Faculty in a subsequent communication.
Update on State of Campus
Our campus and those students living in residence halls and City Vista also have experienced significant disruptions.
City Vista residents experienced flooding in 12 units due to burst pipes, and have had water shut off to the entire complex since Monday, Feb. 15. Many moved to a hotel, via a special arrangement with Trinity. The Bell Center has been used for showering and bathrooms.
On campus, rolling outages of internet and power were compounded by a SAWS water outage, which further threatened those who live in residence halls with no heat overnight. While that threat persists, Facilities crews developed a temporary and creative solution, pumping water from the outdoor pool to refill the boilers that heat all of Trinity. We continue to await an update from SAWS as to when water will be restored to the area that includes Trinity. CSI restrooms are functioning for now, and these have been made available to on-campus students 24/7.
Internet service, and with it access to TLearn, Zoom and other resources, remains inconsistent because of statewide technology issues, despite all of ITS’s best efforts.
All non-residential buildings have been shuttered to conserve energy and heat. Over the weekend, we will begin the task of inspecting each building floor-by-floor for water leaks and burst pipes. We have already addressed flooding in Margarite B. Parker Chapel.
We want to share our thanks for the innovation, dedication and hard work of our Facilities, Residential Life, Dining Services (who have been sleeping on campus), TUPD, ITS and Crisis Management teams throughout this week. Truly, their commitment to our students and to Trinity has been inspiring and selfless.
Finally, we are praying and hoping for respite and restoration for our entire Trinity family this weekend. Until then, please remain vigilant as you move about campus or the community. Stay safe and warm.
Updated: Wednesday, February 17, 2021
The San Antonio Water System (SAWS) is experiencing a widespread disruption which is affecting all of Trinity’s campus and other neighborhoods and businesses in our area.
As a result, we need to modify hours at Mabee Dining Hall for the foreseeable future:
Breakfast: 7:30 – 10am
Lunch: 11am -2pm
Unfortunately, this means the showers in the Bell Center and Outdoor pool area are not available.
Please turn off all faucets immediately if you haven’t already. We will share updates as they are available from SAWS.
Thank you for your patience and understanding, and thank you to our Dining Services team members who are working non-stop to meet student needs.
Updated: Tuesday, February 16, 2021
Many of us are struggling to meet basic needs as widespread outages of power, water and Internet make activities of daily living difficult or impossible. We anticipate these disruptions may continue into Thursday.
Classes and Operations Canceled through Thursday
As such, we are closing campus, cancelling all online classes, and ceasing all but the most essential operations so that we may focus on our families and neighbors today through Thursday, Feb. 18. This means that all non-essential workers - even those currently working remotely - are not expected to report to work. Supervisors and Department Chairs, it may be necessary to communicate this with your direct reports via text or phone as Internet access is spotty.
Non-essential staff should record their time in TigerPaws as ADMN (administrative leave) when you are able to do so. Essential personnel who must report to work will enter their regular hours worked, plus log ADMN in order to be paid double time.
Additional guidance regarding classes and work for Friday will be shared on Thursday.
ITS is aware that major Internet outages continue statewide. This is also affecting access to campus services such as TLearn, Slate, M365, VPN, and Zoom. We anticipate these intermittent outages to continue throughout today, and perhaps beyond.
Student Safety On-Campus and City Vista
Our primary concern is the safety of our students, faculty and staff during this extraordinary weather event. Residential Life staff, TUPD, Dining Services, Health Services and Facilities team members continue to work around the clock to support and care for our on-campus students. We truly appreciate their dedication and effort in keeping our campus safe for all.
Fortunately, power and water remain intact in our Residence Halls. However, 222 students who reside in City Vista have been uniquely impacted by the extreme weather. Six units experienced water damage from broken sprinklers, and as a result the entire building is without water for at least the next 48 hours — though electricity remains intact. These students have been offered alternative accommodations at a nearby hotel, and access to the Bell Center for bathrooms and showers in the interim.
Special Accommodations at Doubletree
I also want to be sure to share one more resource for Trinity Faculty and Staff: We have arranged a special rate with the Doubletree Hotel Downtown of $65 using the code TUS should you need to seek alternative accommodations.
Thank you in advance for your willingness to be flexible with all students as they experience these extreme and unanticipated disruptions. Please take great care!
Updated: Monday, February 15, 2021
As we are all aware, San Antonio and the surrounding areas are experiencing a significant winter weather event. While the campus has experienced limited power outages, residences throughout the region are experiencing frequent rolling blackouts and extended periods without electricity and Internet.
In light of current conditions and the likelihood that intermittent power and internet outages will occur, Trinity has elected to cancel all classes tomorrow (Tuesday).
Faculty are asked to extend the deadline for any assignments that were due tomorrow in recognition that students may not have access to their electronics or internet to submit their assignments electronically.
Campus facilities, including the Library and Bell Center, will remain closed. Mabee Dining Hall will continue to provide food service to campus residents.
Trinity is continuing to monitor the conditions throughout the region and will provide an update regarding classes and campus operations. It is possible that weather events could precipitate additional changes in operations Wednesday, so please continue to check for updates.
Updated: Friday, February 12, 2021:
Winter Storm Shirley will bring sub-freezing temperatures, sleet, ice and snow to our area over the next few days and into next week. For the safety and comfort of our students, faculty, and staff, all buildings on our upper campus will close at noon tomorrow, Saturday, Feb. 13 and remain closed until 8 am Wednesday, Feb. 17.
Be advised that non-residential buildings across campus will be colder than normal during this timeframe to ensure our ability to properly heat our residence halls and City Vista.
While no classes are scheduled for Monday, all classes will be conducted remotely at scheduled times on Tuesday.
Mabee Dining Hall will remain open and provide dining services as normally scheduled.
The Library, which normally opens at 10 am on Saturdays, will instead remain closed all day tomorrow, and will reopen at 8 am Wednesday.
Indoor and outdoor athletic facilities will close during this timeframe, with the exception of two basketball games taking place Saturday afternoon in Calgaard Gymnasium.
For everyone’s safety, faculty and staff are strongly encouraged not to travel to campus and to work remotely instead. Please contact your supervisor or Department Chair with any questions regarding schedules or work assignments. Employees will receive their regular pay during this time.
A gentle reminder that all ProtecTU policies and guidelines remain in place.
Trinity will continue to monitor conditions, so please check your email regularly for updates. Additionally, any new guidance will be posted to our social media channels and website as it becomes available. Thank you in advance to our colleagues in Facilities and TUPD for their commitment to campus safety during this weather event.
Please use the following links for winter weather and travel advisories:
Finally, please be careful. Avoid unnecessary travel, as road conditions are expected to deteriorate Sunday evening. Exercise additional caution when navigating campus, as ice and snow can be hazardous on walkways and stairs.
Stay safe and stay warm!