In response to the COVID-19 crisis, Goodwin University shifted its academic programs online, adapted courses, moved residential students, and effectively shut down its East Hartford campus.
“When this current health crisis hit, Goodwin found itself in a unique situation. Online classes were already business-as-usual for many our students and faculty, so we were positioned to bring everyone else on board quickly. Within two days, all classes had shifted to online delivery; it was amazing,” says Goodwin University President Mark Scheinberg.
While Goodwin staff and faculty are working hard to support the academic path of students through online learning and one-on-one tutoring, the transition to remote study has created new, time-sensitive needs. In response, the Goodwin Foundation has ramped up its efforts with a Student Response Fund. The funding will support those in the Goodwin learning community with services for students remaining in campus housing, access to technology, and a critical scholarship and financial aid for high-need students who have lost income due to a disruption in the job market
In a remarkable act of generosity and dedication, President Scheinberg has begun donating half his salary to the Student Response Fund.
“Goodwin’s response to COVID has shown us what we can do as a community, but it hasn’t changed our mission, nor has it changed our commitment to our students’ needs,” said Scheinberg. “I’d say we’ve expanded our capabilities for both learning and working—for the better. We’re all going to come out of this looking at education through a different lens.”
Goodwin has also looked outward for opportunities to help the greater community, specifically those on the frontlines.
With medical supplies in short supply, representatives from Goodwin’s School of Nursing and Health Professions and the School of Business, Technology, and Advanced Manufacturing took stock of what supplies they had on hand that matched what was most needed.
On March 23, donations of medical and safety supplies typically used in Goodwin’s academic programs—including latex gloves, medical gowns, safety glasses, masks, medical booties, and disinfectant wipes—were delivered to Saint Francis Hospital and Medical Center and Eastern Connecticut Health Network (ECHN). Later in the week, the University began making its residential facilities available to area nurses to provide places for them to sleep between shifts and to isolate them from their families, if necessary.
On March 30, the University moved its Advanced Manufacturing Mobile Lab to Saint Francis Hospital and Medical Center in Hartford to be used by the administration and staff as needs arise.
“While this is a time for concern, certainly, it is also a time for creativity,” emphasized Scheinberg. “The Mobile Lab is going to be off the road until we get through this crisis, so it’s better to move it where it can be useful.”
The University has also donated its ventilator from the Respiratory Care program to an area facility.
“We’re looking at what else we have that might be used for the greater good. Our manufacturing faculty are working out how to produce surgical masks using the 3D printers we have right here on campus. Problem solving is everyone’s responsibility,” Scheinberg said.