Gwen O'Brien | March 24, 2020
It was a working spring break for political science professor Michael C. Desch. He started the week of March 8 in Washington D.C. before heading to Fort Bragg, North Carolina. “D.C. was very quiet because many U.S. government employees were working remotely,” he notes.
The Packey J. Dee professor of International Relations and the Brian and Jeannelle Brady Family director of the Notre Dame International Security Center was well aware of the threat COVID-19 posed to the U.S., but even he was surprised how fast ‘life as we know it’ came to a screeching halt.
“While at Fort Bragg, I was only in intermediate contact with the rest of the world, but it was clear by the end of the week that big changes were in store,” he says.
Indeed. On Wednesday, March 11, Notre Dame President Rev. John I. Jenkins, C.S.C., announced classes would not resume as scheduled Monday, March 16. His announcement was made the same day the World Health Organization declared COVID-19 a pandemic — an outbreak of a serious new disease with sustained transmission throughout the world. Father Jenkins instructed faculty to take the next week to prepare to teach remotely. All in-person classes were suspended from Monday, March 23 through at least Monday, April 13.
Read more here.