Faculty & Staff Newsletter

August 25, 2020 Special Edition


The regular Monday Faculty and Staff and email newsletters will resume Monday, August 31. Please use the forms below to submit items.

Enrollment Update

Submitted by Lori Edgeworth

Welcome to the first day of Fall semester 2020. As of Saturday night, August 22 the total enrollment for the semester is 1435 students enrolled in 12,383 credit hours. The credit hour goal for Fall is 12,811. We will continue to update you on the numbers as the enrollment and credit hours are very fluid at this time.

In follow up to our Strategic Planning Session on Wednesday – The Strategic Planning and Budgeting Council met on Friday, August 22, and has created an “elevator speech” on the Strategic Plan. This provides all faculty and staff with the key items of the Strategic Plan that we want everyone to know!

The Strategic Plan is a 5-year plan, that focuses on quality education that promotes student success, building internal and external relationships, practicing financial stewardship, and celebrating our history and heritage. The goals are built on our Foundation of Catholic Identity, Mercy Charism, and Values. Critical to the success of the plan are the Key Performance Indicators (KPI’s) for each goal, as they measure our Institutional Effectiveness.

The Admission and Financial Aid Offices are staff daily on campus from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. We have a rotating schedule that has the front desk staffed and one person in the Office of Admission and Financial Aid during this time.

Happy Monday!

Updates from Student Affairs

Submitted by Marc Adkins

The effort to address social and racial injustice is on-going. The resources listed below are for students, faculty and staff who are in need of support.

Counseling and Wellness - contact Suzanne Hall at 419-251-1454 or In Youngstown, contact Ann Bair at 330-480-2874 or Also, please access the Counseling & Wellness webpage or the Student Success folder on Canvas.

Campus Ministry and Pastoral Care - contact Annie Devine at 419-251-1866,, or the Campus Ministry page.

Life Matters – (Faculty & Staff) - Employees can call 877-692-7780 or text “Hello” to 61295. Additional information for Life Matters can be found on the Mercy Health Hub.

Safety & Security

Faculty re-entry plans for the fall semester have been finalized. Due to the increase in COVID cases, staff plans were revised with one Ex. Staff member on duty at the college, Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.. Faculty and staff need to contact the Incident Commander, Marc Adkins, if requesting to be on campus during the aforementioned hours of operation.

As stated in the President’s Message, for the fall semester all coursework and services will be delivered virtually with labs on campus. All clinicals will be at the respective clinical sites. All on-campus activities (labs) will conclude before Thanksgiving (November 24th).

Many of the safety measures utilized at the college this summer will remain for the fall semester and be extended to other parts of campus. All safety measures implemented at the college has, and will, follow the Association of Independent Colleges and Universities (AICUO) and State of Ohio Governor’s office guidelines for higher education.

Please refer to the President’s Message that was sent to all faculty & staff on Friday, August 14th for additional details regarding opening plans for the fall semester.

Student Life

The annual Student Leader Retreat (SLR) was successfully delivered virtually on Friday, August 21 (2 to 5 p.m.), Saturday, August 22 (9 to 11 a.m.), Sunday, August 23 (4 to 6 p.m.). Additional resources and asynchronous sessions will be available to attendees via the Campus Life course shell on Canvas. This year’s theme was “Got Grit” with a focus on resilience. Thank you to all presenters!

Week of Welcome activities will be provided in a virtual format this year. There will be tables strategically placed around campus advertising the various resources offered through the division.

If you, or students you are aware, have food insecurity issues, please contact Annie Devine at or the Food Pantry site. Food pantry inquires can also be found in the Campus Life folder on Canvas.

Due to the COVID-19 situation and the revised fall schedule, it has been decided that the Day of Service will be postponed until 2021.

Diversity & Inclusion

The Director of Diversity & Inclusion position is being re-advertised and Mercy Corporate is now assisting the college in finding a qualified candidate.

Academic Support

Please do not hesitate to direct your students to the resources listed below, that will be delivered virtually for the fall semester. Academic support resources, such as tutoring in Nursing or other related disciplines (Sciences, Math & Writing) are available by contacting the Student Success Center at 419-251-1734,, or accessing the Student Success webpage.

In Youngstown, you can contact Somia Abou-Osman at 330-480-3145 or

Students have access to Smarthinking, the FREE, 24/7 online tutoring software that is available through Canvas. Also, on Canvas you will find the Student Success folder that houses resources as well as other helpful materials.

Accessibility & Testing Services

The Accessibility Services Office continues to serve all students remotely. New students will also be provided with services, information, meetings, etc. The remote office is open during normal business hours (Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-5 p.m.) during the fall semester.

The design of accommodations is to provide not only equal access to the learning environment, but also the same opportunities and experiences that all students have during college. Currently, with all classes being online, there may be some accommodations that may not apply in this situation, such as distraction reduced space or private space. Because we have no control over the student’s environment, it is up to the student to find/create such a space at home. The accommodations that are currently being provided online are:

  • Extra Test Time - the amount of time to take the test can be adjusted in Canvas for individual students according to the amount of extra time that is provided.
  • Screen Reader Program – all students who have been provided with this accommodation have access to the screen reader program on any of their devices, and have been provided with instructions on how to set it up. We also offer to work with students to assist them with training. The screen reader program that the college uses, Texthelp Read and Write, works with Canvas.
  • Breaks - students are provided 1-2 breaks during testing for various reasons. If students tested at the Testing Center, they would need to signal to the proctor that they needed a break. The proctor would retrieve the student from the testing room, and walk them to the restroom/kitchen. Students were not permitted to leave the area, could not have their phones, etc.

Accommodations for paper based/computer testing should first be made in the classroom, unless time and/or environment does not allow for uninterrupted testing. Because all students are taking courses online, all students should be tested in the same environment if possible. Please let Christine Miller know if you need any assistance or need to discuss student accommodations as they relate to your course and the requirements.

Testing Services will be closed (both locations) for the fall semester. The only “testing” that will be provided online is the Accuplacer math placement assessment for new students. Because the proctor must have control of the student’s desktop (as well as sharing the screen) to be able to provide the test, they cannot test more than one student at a time and the time for this test is unlimited. Prior, when proctoring course exams in the Testing Center, proctors were proctoring several different paper/computer exams for different courses at the same time. We are not able to do this at this time, and the Testing Center does not proctor entire classes.

Students who are not on campus should not be required to travel to campus to take a test. Until we can provide testing for makeups, tests with accommodations, etc. as before, we will not be open.

We will be glad to notify you of any changes as I am informed. In the meantime, feel free to contact Shelly Clark at 419-251-2106 for testing related questions, or Christine Miller at 419-251-1784.


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