COVID-19 Update
Lubbock Christian University Novel Coronavirus COVID-19 Info.
Lubbock Christian University

LCU Community Health Update - Coronavirus

The CDC has urged communities to plan for the likely future spread of COVID-19 in the United States. The health and safety of our students, faculty, and staff is very important, and Lubbock Christian University will continue to monitor the situation with national, state, and local health officials as we work to ensure the safety of our community.

Healthy Habits and Prevention

As with other viruses, the CDC recommends everyday preventive actions like frequent hand washing, staying home when sick, and covering coughs and sneezes.

Go to https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html for additional details and for the most up-to-date information about the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19).

Updates by Date

Even though the spring semester is now complete, the pace here at LCU has not slowed much. Across the university, we are working diligently to offer online summer classes and finish up the details for the spring semester. We are also creating alternative opportunities for those who would have attended one of our vibrant summer camps and are preparing for reopening the campus for our fall semester – lots of productivity and effort. We are looking forward with great confidence and courage about being back together for the fall. Below are some of the details of these efforts and other updates:

  • Our Summer Camps team is working to provide alternative experiences for Encounter and Camp Champion, creating opportunities for spiritual encouragement and worship. In fact, I understand that we have a team of folks recording worship components for Encounter with LCU’s Best Friends and Thomas Aduddell today and tomorrow. These videos will be made available to churches and youth ministers for use throughout the summer.
  • The first round of CARES checks has been distributed with more to follow. Students who have not applied should watch their LCU emails for the next round of applications. And, as a reminder, only those who filed the FAFSA are eligible.
  • Our facilities and custodial crews always do a wonderful job of caring for our campus, but they have enhanced their efforts and routines to ensure a safe and sanitary environment for the summer and in anticipation of the fall semester.
  • Financial Aid awarding for students attending summer school continues, and we encourage students to complete their financial aid application for the 2020-2021 academic year.
  • If your family has experienced financial hardship due to COVID-19, the Financial Assistance Office can review the financial information reported on the 2020-2021 FAFSA for consideration of special circumstance. Please contact financialassist@lcu.edu  for assistance with the special circumstance process.
  • If you missed registering for Fall classes in the middle of our Spring semester's disruption, please register today and stay on track for graduation.
  • The LCUWithU resource webpage created for students to help them through the last few weeks when they couldn’t be on campus is still available with Spiritual Life videos, Things to Read up On, and other helpful resources.

I began these weekly emails to keep you informed of changes being made in response to the dynamic and quickly evolving situations created by the Coronavirus pandemic. Over the course of the summer, I will be communicating with you as new developments arise and updates are needed.

As I have said to you before, I have been so impressed with the heart, talent, and abilities of the LCU leadership, faculty, and staff. They are passionately working with an audience of one in mind in their efforts to educate, engage with, and care for our students. We are excited about having our continuing students back on campus this fall, and we pray for God’s blessing on our new and returning students, and on our new graduates.

Blessings on you and your family.
Go Chaps,
Scott McDowell

Greetings LCU family,

As we conclude finals for the spring 2020 semester, I am writing to congratulate you on completing a very challenging semester with an amazing amount of poise and grace.  

I particularly want to applaud our new graduates and invite you to watch a special video message from Provost Mills and me.  We are proud of your accomplishments and invite you to come back to campus to celebrate in person this summer.  We will have a university photographer in the campus mall on Friday, August 21, from noon to 7:00 p.m. to take complimentary photos of graduates in their regalia with their families.  Commencement itself will take place on August 22, 2020, at 10:00 AM in the Rip Griffin Center.

While our business partner that creates LCU’s regalia (complete with monogrammed sleeves) was also shut down during the pandemic, they anticipate having your regalia in the mail to you by May 15.

Earlier this week we were thrilled to announce Matt Bumstead as our new Dean of LCU’s School of Business.  The longtime, Lubbock business professional and civic leader was selected from a field of exceptional finalists and will begin his role at the beginning of the fall 2020 semester, following the retirement of current dean, Tracy Mack.

Bumstead is no stranger to LCU.  In 2016, he was appointed CEO-in-Residence for the LCU School of Business with the express purpose of engaging students from the perspective of his real-world professional experiences of integrating faith into the workplace. The capstone class he teaches for graduating seniors draws on his expertise as a practitioner to equip LCU business students to become Christ-centered industry leaders and to advance LCU’s "business as ministry" initiative.

Matt is an active member of the Lubbock community and is best known for his distinguished career with United Supermarkets, having served as co-president for nine years and on their board 17 years. He has also served in numerous leadership roles in organizations including Lubbock Area United Way, Lubbock Chamber of Commerce, the Texas Methodist Foundation, and Lubbock Entertainment and Performing Arts Association.

As he considered this appointment, Matt said, “We are a business school focused on creating lasting success and long-term returns by staying focused on what really matters to businesses in the real world.  Graduates of the LCU School of Business will be sought after – not only for their strong work ethic, humility, and integrity, but also for mission-focused energy, positive contribution, winning attitude, and commitment to high standards in all they do.  Our commitment and expectation is this:  any firm that hires one of our students will want another one as soon as possible.” 

We are thrilled to have Matt in his new expanded role, and all of us look forward to having you on campus this fall.

Have a great weekend, and “Go Chaps!”

Blessings,
Scott McDowell

P.S. I would love for you to follow me on Facebook at https://facebook.com/LCUPresMcDowell where you will find more updates and information about everything happening at LCU.

Greetings LCU Family, 

As you head into the final weekend of the semester, I am writing to share some important updates.

  • As we announced yesterday, LCU will safely resume face-to-face academic instruction and residential life for the fall 2020 semester.  While the health and safety of all of our LCU community are of paramount importance as we script the precise nature of how we will begin in the fall, the fact that we primarily serve the low risk demographic of 18-22 year-olds factors significantly into our decision to open. 
    We will take necessary precautions to protect our most at-risk community members, and please be assured that guidance from appropriate government and public health officials will continue to be critical to our planning process.  We share this decision now to provide some certainty as you make your own plans for this fall
  • On April 22-23 the Accreditation Council for Business Schools and Programs (ACBSP) voted to grant full accreditation to the LCU School of Business.  This accreditation has long been desired by the faculty of the School of Business and is confirmation that the academic experience of our graduates meets and exceeds that of other universities.  This accreditation recognizes the high quality of our faculty and would not have been awarded without their dedication to excellent instruction and scholarship. 
  • It was communicated earlier today that all on-campus summer camps have been suspended for the summer of 2020.  Please know that this very difficult decision was made with prayerful consideration and with the health and safety of campers, counselors, and camp staff in mind.  In lieu of having week-long experiences of Encounter and Camp Champion, three exciting opportunities are being planned:
    • Encounter Online - on June 7th at 7:00 PM.  During this event Josh Stephens, Katie Turnipseed, and Marty Baker will be giving away prizes; we will have a time of worship with Thomas Aduddell and Best Friends; and we will hear from our very own David Fraze!  While this will be different from the normal Encounter experience, it will be a unique way of connecting and hearing from our Encounter team! 
    • LCU Summer Camp Worship and Lessons – Following Encounter Online, we will send out a series of video links to the churches who are a part of our LCU Summer Camp family.  These videos will contain worship and a lesson from an Encounter/Camp Champion teacher.  Churches can use these videos any way they like!  We hope you are blessed by them. 
    • Encounter LE is coming back for the fall of 2020! Lubbock Christian University is inviting all middle school and high school students to come to campus on November 6-8 to hear from some of your favorite teachers and keynotes, and to enjoy a time of worship and growth together.  You do not want to miss this!
    • LCU Summer Camps is in the process of providing full refunds of any payment received, and our Summer Camps team is committed to praying for those who would have attended Encounter and Camp Champion.

I utilized the virtual format to participate in my first LCU board meeting today.  Even though we were literally scattered across the country, the spirit of love and support for our LCU students and the LCU mission was palpable.  I am so grateful to be part of the Lubbock Christian University community and I anxiously await our safe re-opening this fall.

Have a great weekend.

Blessings,

Scott McDowell

LCU Family,

As we begin the final week of classes next week and "head down the home stretch" of what has clearly been a surreal semester, please know that I am praying for all of you to finish strong.  

I know that each of you has navigated this journey of uncertainty in a unique way, but as I have watched you do so I can tell you unequivocally that I have been inspired.  

You are resilient.  You are faithful.  You are courageous.  You are creative.  You are LCU!  I am so glad to be a part of this community.

New Points of Clarity:

  • All LCU summer academic courses will be delivered on-line, using distance learning methods (i.e., no face-to-face on-campus courses).  This decision was not made hastily and included direct involvement by faculty who will be teaching summer courses.  Please direct any questions you might have to your course instructor or instructors.
  • Book sell back and rental return details will be distributed next week.  Students will be receiving emails beginning Monday, April 27, with detailed information and instructions on how they can return rentals and sell their books.  The window for when students can conduct any of these transactions has been extended and runs from April 27 through May 17.  All books that are sold back and rentals that are returned will receive free shipping.  Detailed instructions will be on the LCU website at LCUwithU and will also be shared via email to students beginning on Monday.  If students have questions or need assistance, they can contact the ChapStore at 806-720-7526.
  • LCU just received its allocation of emergency grant funding made available under the CARES Act, as well as further clarification on how we are to disburse it.  The funding will be available to LCU students who completed a FAFSA for this academic year and meet certain other criteria.  Eligible LCU students will receive a link to the application for that grant funding next week, via their LCU e-mail addresses, and we will begin disbursing the first wave of grants immediately.
  • If your family has experienced financial hardship due to COVID-19, the Financial Assistance Office can review the financial information reported on the FAFSA for consideration of special circumstance.  Special circumstance can be reviewed for the academic years 2019-2020 and 2020-2021.  Please contact the Financial Assistance Office at financialassist@lcu.edu for assistance with the special circumstance process. 
  • Pre-registration for summer and fall classes continues
  • Construction on the new Track and Soccer complex is underway with grading beginning earlier this week.

Blessings on your weekend!
Go Chaps,
Scott McDowell

Greetings from Lubbock,

In spite of the stay at home restrictions, I've been fortunate in the opening weeks of my time here at LCU to interact virtually with literally hundreds of the Lubbock Christian and greater Lubbock community  listening to advice and answering questions.  One of the questions submitted asked about my "first 90 days plan" and when I saw that I couldn't help but smile.

I thought of the old Woody Allen line, "If you want to make God laugh, tell him your plans."  I've also been reminded of the expression to "plan for the worst but hope for the best."  While we certainly don't know yet how long these restrictions will last, news in recent days has given us reason to hope.

I'm certainly hopeful about welcoming our students back to campus for the fall semester and ask you to continue to remember LCU in your prayers.
New Points of Clarity:

  • If your family has experienced financial hardship due to COVID-19, the Financial Assistance Office can review the financial information reported on the FAFSA for consideration of special circumstance.  Special circumstance can be reviewed for the academic years 2019-2020 and 2020-2021.  Please contact the Financial Assistance Office at financialassist@lcu.edu for assistance with the special circumstance process. 
  • Housing and meal refunds for those who had to leave our residence halls were processed this week. Checks for credit balances created by these refunds will begin arriving in mail boxes early next week.
  • Pre-registration for summer and fall classes is now open
  • Thanks to a generous gift from the Randolph Foundation for Higher Education, students returning to LCU will find significant improvements to the Rhodes Perrin Recreation Center.  Handball and racquetball courts are being added to the south end, new hardwood floors are being installed on all four basketball courts and the walking track is being resurfaced.

 Items still pending:

  • Department of Education's release of emergency grant funding to students--we have confirmation of $700,000 of funding and a process for distribution once funds become available.
  • We continue close communication with the Lubbock healthcare community  with regard to when the COVID-19 peak in Lubbock may happen and are monitoring that information closely.  Decisions on academic delivery methods for June and July Summer sessions will be made May 1.

Have a good weekend and stay safe.
Blessings,
Scott McDowell

Greetings LCU family,

As we come to the conclusion of what Christians traditionally call Holy Week and anticipate Easter Sunday, we do so with the great hope that this linchpin of our faith gives us even as we continue to navigate the fluid and uncertain world of COVID-19.
New Points of Clarity:

  • Pro-rated refunds for room and board are in process but were delayed slightly due to a technical issue.  That issue has been remedied and those refunds will proceed for on-campus students who had to move out of the residence halls.
  • The first five sessions (through June 30) at LCU's Pine Springs Camp in New Mexico have been cancelled.

Items still pending:

  • We are in close communication with the Lubbock healthcare community  with regard to when the COVID-19 peak in Lubbock may happen and are monitoring that information closely.  Decisions on academic delivery methods for June and July Summer sessions will be made May 1.
  • On campus summer camp scheduling for Encounter, Camp Champion, and athletic camps will be determined May 1.
  • LCU has applied for CARES emergency funding from the Department of Education which Education Secretary Betsy DeVos stated, "Is meant to be a direct grant to students to cover expenses such as 'food, housing, course materials, technology, health care, and childcare caused by campus disruption due to corona virus.'"  
  • Those funds will begin to become available from the Department of Education sometime after April 15 and we will disburse them as soon as possible.

Thank you for the wonderful welcome you have extended to me and my family.  We absolutely love Lubbock, Texas and are thrilled to be a part of the LCU community.  We eagerly anticipate the time when we can be with all of you in person. 

The words of the apostle Peter are appropriate as we enter this Easter weekend: "Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ!  In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead" (1 Peter 1:3 NIV). 

Especially during these challenging times, I pray this living hope is a reality for you and for those you love.

Blessings,
Scott McDowell

Greetings LCU family,

As I enter my first weekend as LCU's 7th president, I am writing to provide some key updates on our COVID-19 response and to establish a rhythm of weekly communication from this office.

Here's what we have clarity about:

  • Spring commencement exercises for both undergraduate and graduate students have been set for Saturday, August 22, 2020 beginning at 10:00 AM in the Rip Griffin Center.
  • May-mester classes will continue to be delivered in the current "distance learning" online format.
  • Refunds to students who left our residence halls due to the COVID-19 pandemic will be credited to student accounts on a prorated basis of unused days. 
  • Refunds in excess of any balance owed will automatically generate an excess ACH deposit or check mailed to your home address.
  • Refunds for housing will begin next week, and refunds for meal plans will begin the following week.

Here's what is still pending: 

  • The delivery method for the June and July summer terms will be determined soon.
  • Summer camp scheduling including Encounter, Camp Champion, Summer Excitement, and athletic camps are still to be determined.

I am so grateful to be a part of this wonderful University.  I have received literally hundreds of messages, notes, and letters of encouragement as we begin this journey together.

While all of these notes have been incredibly inspiring, one of the consistent themes has been a recurring expression of empathy regarding the circumstances of this beginning.  

Even though I've told many of you that I wouldn't have chosen to start this job during such a crisis, the more I reflect, the more I realize that this might just be the absolute best time to begin this journey.

When I was introduced to the community more than a month ago, I pledged to be "fully committed" to the Lord.  I can tell you definitively that this pandemic has made it abundantly clear – there simply is no other way.  

For Lubbock Christian University to be a success, God must make us a success.  

This pandemic was not a surprise to him, and we work in joyful anticipation of how he will provide and see us through this chapter of LCU’s story.

Have a great weekend.
Blessings,
Scott McDowell

Campus Operations

The events of the past several weeks associated with COVID-19 are unprecedented.  We are all adjusting to a new way of doing things in new places and in new ways – and this includes day-to-day operations of the LCU Campus.

To secure the safety and health of our staff, faculty and students, and in alignment with federal, state and local health and regulatory guidelines, most of our campus facilities are closed.  Only essential university employees have been granted access to our facilities, and even then, social distancing and other safety restrictions are mandated.  We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause.

LCU Public Safety will continue to provide 24-hour surveillance.

Should you confront an extraordinary circumstance and need assistance, please call LCU Public Safety at 806.928.6803.

Academic instruction and finals for all classes will be provided via distance learning through the end of the spring semester. 

Distance learning will commence on Monday, March 30. Specific details regarding course access and procedures will be sent from faculty to students via email. 

Our hope was to resume vibrant, on-campus life for the remainder of the semester. However, this is no longer possible, and we must take steps that are in the best interest of sustaining the educational enterprise for now. More details can be found here.

In view of the continually changing environment created by the COVID-19 pandemic, LCU is amending the guidance provided earlier this week, consistent with new guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and federal, state, and local health officials. Important points are noted below:

  • Specific restrictions for our residence halls are now in effect so that we are only accommodating students with special circumstances such as international students. We have encouraged all students to remain in place provided it is safe for them to do so.
  • For the students whose circumstances require them to be on campus, only limited services will be provided.  For example, the Rec Center is closed, and only take-out food service will be available.
  • We are encouraging Faculty and Staff to work remotely as much as possible and insisting employees at greater risk work remotely.  

Detailed guidelines were provided to students via their LCU email and are available here.

In view of the changing dynamics created by COVID-19, LCU is adjusting plans for campus based on the most recent guidelines released from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the White House. Of utmost importance to all of us is keeping you safe and healthy, while helping you continue your academic pursuits. 

As of today, based on current guidelines from the CDC and the White House, the University will be operating on the schedule as outlined below:

  • Spring Break has been extended by one week for students. Residence halls will reopen for residents Sunday, March 29, at 1:00 p.m. Students needing campus housing before March 29 can request a special exemption by contacting housing@lcu.edu.
  • Academic instruction for all classes will be provided through distance learning beginning Monday, March 30, and until further notice. More specific details regarding access and procedures will be shared with students as they become available.
  • Faculty and Staff will report to campus on Monday, March 23, to finalize details for distance learning instruction and to establish a reoriented safe environment considering CDC recommendations for students who choose to live on campus during this period. Guidelines and best practices for avoiding larger gatherings of students for those on campus will be provided prior to March 29. 
  • Registration for fall 2020 will take place as scheduled beginning Monday, March 23, at 8:00 a.m. for those with senior hours, graduate students, and honors students.

As we move forward with an extended break and with the utilization of distance learning when classes resume, we understand that some students will choose to stay home, while others will choose to return to campus. LCU faculty and staff are dedicated to making the experience as pleasant and effective as possible, but there may be some challenges as we all adjust to a new normal for a while.  As you get into the new routine, please let us know if you are encountering any difficulties for which we might be able to offer a solution.

As stated in the Student Handbook, official communication with you as a student will occur through your LCU email account, so any changes and updates to this schedule will be shared in this medium.  Updates will also be posted to the LCU website to which you can point family and friends.

The Interim Leadership Team is prayerfully dedicated to godly wisdom and discernment as they make decisions during this unique situation affecting our community, state, nation, and world. We humbly ask you to pray regularly for LCU’s campus leadership, faculty, and staff as they strive to provide you with the best possible solution for you to continue your academic pursuits with minimal disruption in a safe environment.

The coronavirus (COVID-19) occurrence has been the topic of much conversation and news coverage. Your safety and health are of critical importance and LCU leadership has been continuously monitoring reliable sources of information such as the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the World Health Organization (WHO).

Last week, because of escalating concerns related to the spread of COVID-19 and upon the counsel of the CDC, university-sponsored international travel was suspended until further notice. Since then, you have likely heard of universities suspending on-campus classes, extending Spring Break or making other scheduling changes.  While we respect the decisions made by others, we have not received any authoritative guidance indicating it would be in the best interest of LCU students to make extensive changes at this time.  

The university will resume operations beginning Monday, March 23 with all student services available, however, classes will not resume until Wednesday, March 25. Students who may feel their well-being could be compromised through their ongoing activities on campus should consult with their personal physician. For those instances, a form for your physician to complete can be found here (form no longer needed) which will allow for alternative academic instruction. 

The leadership team will continue to closely monitor the COVID-19 outbreak and seek guidance from our local, state, national, and international health agencies.  While there are no confirmed cases of coronavirus on the LCU campus, this decision was made due to the unpredictability of the virus and its rapid spread. If such guidance dictates the need for further changes, we will update our plans and notify you by campus e-mail

Spring Break will afford us an opportunity to deep clean and sanitize our facilities, to implement extra precautionary measures in the Cafeteria, and to prepare some housing options in case we need to provide quarantine accommodations to any campus residents in the future.  We urge you to be vigilant in your health and well-being, taking extra precautions while on campus and while you are on spring break.

While community unfortunately provides the opportunity for disease to spread, the LCU community also provides opportunities for faith, hope and love to spread as well.  We pray that the Lord will allow us to safely maintain the continuity of that community through the end of the semester.

Sincerely,
Presidential Interim Leadership Team