In order to help UC Santa Barbara students and Isla Vista residents keep up with the Nexus’ coverage of the coronavirus outbreak and how the university has changed its day-to-day operations in response, below is a summary of the coverage surrounding the coronavirus. It will be updated daily.
The Nexus is tracking the number of coronavirus cases in Santa Barbara County, click here for updates.
May 16: UC Santa Barbara students have not been alone in facing academic challenges brought on by the coronavirus pandemic; establishing classroom communication, material accessibility and mental health resources has been a source of struggle for some professors, but the university is working to provide training and relief for those who need it.
May 10: With the recent announcement from UCSB administration that all summer sessions will now be conducted online, students are wondering about the fate of an in-person fall quarter, as the start date in late September inches closer.
May 5: All UC Santa Barbara Summer Sessions will now be conducted through remote instruction, extending the university’s previous decision to conduct only sessions A, C, D and E remotely, according to a campus-wide email sent out Tuesday evening.
May 5: In the 12 years that UC Santa Barbara has used GauchoSpace, the pressure for the learning management platform to run smoothly has never been greater, now that the coronavirus has forced classes completely online.
April 30: With UC Santa Barbara well into its first quarter of remote instruction, student organizations are experimenting with new methods of operation to engage members who are no longer on campus.
April 25: The coronavirus pandemic has wiped clean many aspects of what used to account for a normal day at UC Santa Barbara. Classes are now held digitally, dorms have hollowed out and many students — once integral to the university’s workforce — are now without jobs.
April 20: While most of the campus remains silent, the 3D printer in the California NanoSystems Institute (CNSI), located in Elings Hall on campus, hums steadily day through night, producing protective face shields for medical workers at Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital.
April 19: Although UC Santa Barbara has made its spring quarter online and many students left both campus and Isla Vista for their hometowns, the Isla Vista Tenants Union is helping to ease the financial burden of UCSB students’ unexpected coronavirus-related costs with its new COVID-19 Emergency Fund.
April 18: The employee of a private company who had accessed UC Santa Barbara’s Nanofabrication facility in the Engineering Science Building for approved essential research on April 8 and 9 has tested positive for coronavirus, according to an alert sent out on Saturday night.
April 13: Classes for Summer Session A, and concurrent sessions C, D and E, will be conducted remotely, according to a COVID-19 FAQ posted on the Summer Sessions website. The university has not made a decision on how it will conduct Summer Session B, which is scheduled to begin on August 3 and end on September 12, and concurrent sessions F and G.
April 8: The Associated Students Senate allocated two $40,000 grants to the Financial Crisis Response Team and the Educational Opportunity Program at its Wednesday Zoom meeting to help students who are struggling due to the effects of the coronavirus.
April 7: Facing an entirely remote spring quarter, UC Santa Barbara Student Affairs administrators are working to transition traditionally in-person student services onto online platforms.
April 7: A UC Santa Barbara student who left campus on March 17 and only returned once to pack their belongings on April 3 has tested positive for coronavirus, Chancellor Henry T. Yang informed the campus community in an April 7 email.
April 5: All on-campus research at UC Santa Barbara has been suspended in an effort to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus outbreak, according to Vice Chancellor for Research Joseph Incandela.
April 3: In a new provision to grading options for spring quarter, UC Santa Barbara students may now opt for a pass/no pass grade up to the final day of instruction and, depending on the decision of each academic department, may bypass the usual limits on the number of units a student can take pass/not pass that count toward major requirements.
April 2: The University of California will not fire “career employees” at any UC campus through June for reasons stemming from the coronavirus pandemic, University of California President Janet Napolitano and the chancellors of each UC campus announced in a joint statement.
April 2: Approximately 93% of UC Santa Barbara undergraduates living in the residence halls, a total of 5,274 students, have moved out of their respective dorms as of April 1 following the university’s announcement that students could sever their leases for spring quarter.
April 2: All campaigning and voting for this year’s Associated Students spring elections will take place digitally in light of the university’s decision to move all classes online.
March 30: For the UCSB class of 2020, and for classes of 2020 worldwide, the loss of an in-person spring quarter and the presence of the coronavirus pandemic have stolen away any last chances for those traditions.
March 28: As the number of confirmed coronavirus cases climbs each day, UC Santa Barbara Student Health is adopting a number of new measures to help mitigate transmission of the coronavirus within the county, which includes conducting virtual appointments.
March 27: For some high school seniors, the first step toward choosing what college to go to begins with setting foot on the campus. But for the high school class of 2020, who is graduating amidst a global pandemic, the choice of what college to attend feels more complicated than those of students before them.
March 26: UC Santa Barbara Chancellor Henry T. Yang announced in a campus-wide email Thursday evening that this year’s commencement ceremony will be postponed, but that the university will hold an in-person ceremony “when it is safe to do so.”
March 24: The spread of the coronavirus, and resulting mandates for social distancing and self-isolation, shattered the possibility of in-person lectures, which will now be replaced by alternatives such as Zoom meetings and video lectures. Faculty were tasked with piecing together curriculum for online courses in only two weeks’ time.
March 22: Despite the hope that students will choose not to party due to coronavirus concerns, the university and police will continue to implement their usual Deltopia-related restrictions in preparation for possible crowds.
March 20: As of Fall Quarter 2019, there are 3,261 international undergraduate students attending UCSB — composing 14% of the campus population — as well as 914 international graduate students. Many of these international students are unable to return to their home countries, but are also unable to remain in the dorms without paying the $300 spring break housing fee.
March 19: UC Santa Barbara is aiming to curb the number of employees on campus, following Governor Gavin Newsom’s order that California residents stay at home in an effort to slow the spread of coronavirus.
March 16: In Photos | Three days after Chancellor Yang announced that spring quarter would be conducted entirely online, the campus appeared nearly deserted, signifying how seriously students were taking the warnings to move home and stay inside amidst the coronavirus pandemic.
March 14: Chancellor Yang announced that the university would be continuing remote instruction for the entirety of spring quarter. Previously, UCSB was only expected to conduct classes remotely until the end of April.
March 14: Now that instructors will be teaching classes remotely, their challenge for the next few weeks is transitioning from their in-person course materials to online formats with the help of Instructional Development, an organization that consults, evaluates and produces instructional technology at UCSB.
March 13: As the university shifted to remote instruction and exams, the UCSB Faculty Association sent a letter to Chancellor Yang urging the university to “rescind its contract” with ProctorU, a digital proctoring service that the association’s letter says “implicates the university into becoming a surveillance tool.”
March 13: Community events such as The Warm Up, an annual concert put on by A.S. Program Board on the evening of Deltopia, have been postponed until further notice. The All Gaucho Reunion and all UCSB Arts & Lectures events have also been postponed or canceled.
March 12: The Big West Conference announced it would suspend all spring sports, as well as the Big West Men’s and Women’s Basketball Tournament. This follows other sports conferences across the country — including the ACC, Big Ten, Big 12, Pac-12 and SEC — that are canceling their respective tournaments for the rest of the school year.
March 12: After the university first announced it would be transitioning to online classes for the near future, administrators advised UCSB students not to return to campus if they were leaving for spring break or to stay in the area over spring break if they intended to remain in Santa Barbara during spring quarter.
March 11: Associated Students executives released a statement clarifying which A.S. operations would continue to remain open and what each executive would be able to help students with.
March 8: While there have been no confirmed cases of coronavirus in Isla Vista or on campus so far, the Nexus spoke with Ali Javanbakht, UCSB’s interim Student Health Service executive director and medical director, to discuss the university’s preparation for when a case occurs.
May 29: This year, amidst the coronavirus pandemic, some students have been scattered back to their hometowns, celebrating with their families for the first time in years, while others have stayed in Isla Vista, spending the month markedly more alone than usual.
May 27: Less than half of Isla Vista residents have responded to the 2020 Census as of May 26, and with many college students waiting out the coronavirus pandemic in their hometowns, the beachside college community is struggling to increase its response rates.
May 22: Study Hall Bar and Grill in Isla Vista was open for business on Thursday night, a direct violation of Santa Barbara County’s and California’s stay-at-home order.
May 14: The Isla Vista Community Services District is distributing meals, first-aid kits and additional services to houseless residents to provide relief during the coronavirus pandemic, as normally present resources are running thin.
May 13: As California’s shelter-in-place order nears its second month, university and volunteer-led groups are working to support Isla Vista’s most vulnerable populations with consistent and safe access to food during this time of crisis.
May 9: Isla Vista Youth Projects — a community program that provides support and educational tools to families and children — is using its transition to online services to provide childcare, food delivery and other resources to families impacted by coronavirus.
March 18: Many businesses in Isla Vista have reduced their hours, shifted to takeout or delivery only or temporarily closed down altogether as a result of the coronavirus epidemic. This link contains a map that reflects how businesses have reacted to the coronavirus epidemic. It will be updated.
March 18: Isla Vistans looking to break their leases in light of UC Santa Barbara’s decision to make all spring quarter instruction remote will find it nearly impossible without facing repercussions from their landlords.
March 18: The Santa Barbara County Public Health Department announced just after 2 p.m. Wednesday that the five UCSB students under quarantine in Isla Vista had all tested negative for coronavirus. They will remain under mandatory quarantine until March 22.
March 15: The Santa Barbara County Public Health Department said five UCSB students living in Isla Vista were under a mandatory quarantine order after coming into contact with someone in San Diego County who later tested positive for coronavirus.
March 12: After Chancellor Yang’s announcement that classes would be online, the Isla Vista Community Services District — I.V.’s main governing body — postponed plans for an alternative festival scheduled to be held on the same day as Deltopia.
Santa Barbara County:
May 24: Less than a week after Santa Barbara County began rolling out its second phase of reopening businesses in the county, it also announced on Friday that it will be mandating the use of face coverings in public places beginning May 26.
April 5: Santa Barbara County Health Officer Henning Ansorg issued a “Stay Well at Home Order” on Sunday, amidst reports within the county of noncompliance with Governor Gavin Newsom’s March 19 stay-at-home order.
March 25: The Nexus is tracking the number of coronavirus cases in Santa Barbara County, click here for updates.
March 24: Six additional coronavirus cases in Santa Barbara County were confirmed on Tuesday, bringing the total number of confirmed cases to 24
March 22: The Santa Barbara County Public Health Department confirmed five new cases of coronavirus on Sunday evening, bringing the total number of cases in Santa Barbara County to 18.
March 21: The Santa Barbara County Public Health Department announced four new cases of coronavirus Saturday evening, bringing the total number of cases within the county up to 13.
March 19: The Santa Barbara County Public Health Department confirmed six new cases of coronavirus on Thursday, adding to the three cases that were confirmed earlier in the week.
March 18: The Santa Barbara Metropolitan Transit District announced on March 18 that it will be reducing bus services to and around UC Santa Barbara and Santa Barbara City College and will also begin providing free fares for all passengers as well as changing procedures to practice social distancing.
March 17: On Tuesday, the Santa Barbara County Public Health Department asked all bars, pubs, wineries and breweries within the county to close “immediately” and requests that all restaurants with onsite dining switch to delivery or takeout services to mitigate the spread of the coronavirus.
March 17: Two individuals in Santa Barbara County have tested positive for coronavirus, according the Santa Barbara County Public Health Department. As of March 16, 128 tests had been administered throughout the county.
March 16: 128 coronavirus tests had been performed within Santa Barbara County; 31 have come back negative, one has come back positive and there are 96 tests pending results.
March 15: The Santa Barbara County Public Health Department confirmed the county’s first positive case of coronavirus, a North County resident in their 60s.
UC Across the Globe:
May 26: The University of California Education Abroad Program has suspended all Fall Quarter and Semester 2020 study abroad programs due to the coronavirus pandemic.
May 15: In a revised state budget proposal released on Thursday, California Gov. Gavin Newsom is proposing to take hundreds of millions of dollars away from the UC system and direct it toward additional state relief aid to cushion the blow from the coronavirus pandemic.
May 2: On behalf of roughly a quarter million University of California students, UC Davis student Claire Brandmeyer filed a federal class-action lawsuit in Oakland against the UC on Monday, calling on one of the largest academic systems in the world to return its spring term student fees back to students.
April 10: As many UC Santa Barbara students parted ways with the campus for a remote spring quarter, some have been calling for tuition to be lowered in light of their lack of access to on-campus services — but the University of California has announced it has “no expectation” of implementing tuition reductions.
April 3: The University of California Education Abroad Program has suspended all of its Spring and Summer 2020 study abroad programs following the spread of coronavirus and increasing restrictions and warnings on international travel.
April 1: Students intending to enroll at a University of California campus for Fall Quarter 2020, and potentially future applicants, will see a relaxation of the usual admission requirements, following a decision from the UC Office of the President aiming to relieve students affected by the coronavirus pandemic.
March 27: In an executive order on March 27, Governor Gavin Newsom placed a statewide moratorium on evictions to ensure that those who cannot pay rent due to income loss from the coronavirus will not be evicted from their residences.
March 19: During its monthly meeting held earlier this week, the University of California Board of Regents heard from health experts and concerned workers about how coronavirus will continue to impact the UC.
March 16: All University of California employees, including student workers, are now eligible for up to 128 hours of paid administrative leave to help them address any challenges they may face due to the coronavirus pandemic, according to an executive order released by UC President Janet Napolitano.
March 12: Across the globe, study abroad programs being run through the University of California Education Abroad Program have been suspended as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention travel advisories jumped to Level 3, or “Avoid Nonessential Travel.” So far, over 30 programs have been canceled, with at least 980 students impacted by the cancellations. Before March 11, only three programs — in China, South Korea and Italy — had been canceled due to concerns about coronavirus.
March 10: The University of California, Washington Center academic internship program canceled its spring term on March 10 and asked winter quarter students to return home by March 20 due to the coronavirus pandemic.