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Whatever the Future Holds, the Maricopa Community Colleges are Here

Faculty and staff are preparing multiple options to ensure All students are able to continue their educational journey.

TEMPE, AZ, May 11, 2020 — The Maricopa Community Colleges are committed to its mission of providing accessible, high-quality education, and they will continue to do so. For the past several weeks, MCCCD has been working to prepare a variety of course delivery options for the upcoming Fall semester. As physical distancing requirements are lifted, the Maricopa Community Colleges and its District Office will plan to return from remote environments by the time the Fall semester begins in August 2020.

"Our community is understandably concerned and uncertain about the future and how our lives will look in the months ahead. If these past few months have done anything, they have required us all to reconsider how we'll go about our daily lives when we return to "normal," and that includes adjusting the Maricopa Community Colleges to our current times. Many college students, whether they're at a university or community college, are wrestling with the idea of returning to college in the Fall with reports of COVID-19 potentially coming back as well as the financial impact the virus has had. We also know that many in our community are experiencing hardships because they've lost their job or a family member has lost theirs. These families are undoubtedly uneasy about what tomorrow will bring. These concerns are very real and are at the heart of every discussion I am having with College presidents and leadership teams on a daily basis,” said Dr. Steven R. Gonzales, Interim Chancellor. “The bottom line is that we are here for our community. We've designed every possible delivery method for anyone interested in taking a course, upskilling with a new certificate, and we're redesigning how we deliver our programs to expedite returning Arizonans to the workforce. We are committed to finding every possible solution to serve this community in whatever way meets their needs. The truth is, no one knows how long these disruptions to higher education might last. But, we are preparing and ready for every possible scenario."

While the System is optimistic that in-person classes will be an option when the Fall semester begins, they are also planning for all possible scenarios in an effort to bring students back with confidence that their educational journey will not be interrupted. Given the uncertainty surrounding the pandemic, the Maricopa Community Colleges will offer a variety of dynamic and engaging learning options. Class delivery methods have been created with flexibility in mind and will be designed in five ways:

  1. Face-to-Face: Class times will be listed in the schedule and will be held on campus. Based on the state’s response to COVID-19, these courses may shift to Online or hybrid/virtual.
  2. Live Online: Classes will meet at the time listed in the class schedule on a virtual platform. Students would attend live online classes at the same time as their classmates, just as they would on campus.
  3. Hybrid: Part of the class will be held online without a set time to attend. The other part will occur in a face-to-face format on campus at the time listed in the class schedule. If on-campus instruction is not yet allowed by Fall 2020, then in-person instruction will switch to online using a virtual platform.
  4. Hybrid/Virtual: Part of the class will be held online without a set time to attend. The other part will occur at the time listed in the class schedule, either in a face-to-face format on campus or in a virtual format using a virtual platform, depending on the state’s response to COVID-19.
  5. Online: The entire class will be held online without a set time to attend.

Surveys of currently enrolled Maricopa Community College students indicate a strong preference to return to in-person classes. By providing multiple options, students' safety will be ensured should limits be placed on the in-person experience. Colleges will have several resources available for faculty to adapt to the variety of learning solutions that help manage a very challenging public health care environment and keep everyone safe. There will be a variety of support available to assist faculty in their planning and to assist in making their courses work better for them and their students whether they continue to stay online or transition back to in-person.

“It will take a tremendous team effort to prepare ten Colleges, the District Offices, and thousands of students for the transition back to campuses and classrooms,” said Dr. Steven R. Gonzales. “No matter what the Fall looks like, we’re ready.”

Please continue to check our website for the most up-to-date information and advisories.

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Media Contact: Dasi Danzig, 480-268-6766, dasi.danzig@domail.maricopa.edu

About Maricopa Community Colleges
The Maricopa County Community College District includes ten regionally-accredited colleges – Chandler-Gilbert, Estrella Mountain, GateWay, Glendale, Mesa, Paradise Valley, Phoenix, Rio Salado, Scottsdale, and South Mountain – and the Maricopa Corporate College, serving more than 200,000 students with two-year degrees, certificates, and university transfer programs.

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