Faculty, staff to work remotely through spring semester, when possible

March 24, 2020

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Penn State is directing all faculty and staff who can work from home to continue to do so through at least the end of the spring semester on May 8. During this time, faculty will continue to teach their courses and most staff will continue to perform their job responsibilities remotely.

This measure is a continuation of the guidance the University provided last week after Gov. Tom Wolf ordered all non-life-sustaining businesses in Pennsylvania to close. Recognizing that telecommuting is not possible for every employee and that each campus, college and unit has different needs, the University said that every employee who can work from home should do so.

Aligned with the state, national and global efforts to suppress the spread of the novel coronavirus, this step is being taken with the health and well-being of Penn State students, faculty, staff and our local communities in mind. The University is also mindful of Gov. Wolf’s order.

Penn State can never truly close, however. In line with the governor’s order, the University must continue to deliver educational and other critical services that necessitate maintaining certain campus operations. This includes support for students remaining on its campuses, maintaining vital research and lab work, and caring for animals, as well as other important needs.

Campus, college and unit leaders should determine which employees are required to be on site to perform services and which employees can work via telecommuting. The University will work individually with staff whose particular job responsibilities make telecommuting difficult and is taking into very serious consideration the health and financial well-being of University employees. 

Employees in the Applied Research Laboratory should continue to follow ARL-specific guidelines, which ensure critical national security needs are maintained while also maximizing social distancing and adopting remote working protocols.

To provide employees with the necessary tools and resources needed to perform their ongoing work remotely, Penn State Human Resources has created a remote work website. The site provides employees and supervisors with valuable information to help them as they transition into and continue remote working.

If circumstances change, Penn State will communicate any revisions to this guidance.

For the latest updates and information on Penn State’s response to the coronavirus pandemic, including an extensive FAQ and critical information specific for students, faculty and staff, visit psu.edu/virusinfo online.

Last Updated March 27, 2020