Written by The Business Journal Staff
Officials with Fresno Pacific University have decided not to hold in-person classes this coming fall semester.
After announcing in June that the private Christian university would resume classes as normal, a press release last week stated that classes would be limited to online only. Fresno Pacific University has campuses in Merced, North Fresno, southeast Fresno, Visalia and Bakersfield.
The move comes in reaction to rising infection rates and pullback from Gov. Gavin Newsom.
“It is our understanding that higher education institutions in California will not be allowed to move beyond a virtual modality until the state moves into Stage 3 of recovery,” said Joseph Jones, president of Fresno Pacific in the release. “The latest direction from Governor Gavin Newsom makes clear that FPU, along with all other private colleges and universities and public school districts, needs to continue classes online for the fall semester.”
The university had spent millions of dollars, including money from federal CARES funding, to prepare for face-to-face learning, the release stated.
Classrooms and common areas had been modified for social distancing, including the installation of plexiglass and signage throughout the five campuses.
They have allocated $2 million to improve online learning for students and professors. Cameras have been installed for “hybrid learning.”
Student housing has been restricted, but is limited to those with significant need. In the Pacific West Conference, fall sports have been postponed until after Jan. 1, 2021. In October, those sports will be reevaluated.