As the situation with COVID-19 continues to evolve, it is important for us to plan in the event that we are compelled to ramp down our research activities. We should begin preparation today in the event that UM initiates a mandatory ramp down, which is becoming increasingly likely.
First, we will need to make sure that our physical labs are safe. Please respond to my message from Saturday concerning Research Labs–Safe Continued Operations as appropriate. This is critical if your laboratory activities may be unsafe or damaged if there is a sudden disruption in lab staffing. Here is the form for reporting lab activities that would be unsafe or damaged during a sudden reduction in staffing:
As applicable, please complete this brief form before noon Wednesday, March 18th.
Second, now is the time to plan for a potential cessation of research activities. This would lead to a closure of all physical laboratories on campus, after appropriate steps are taken to safely shut down active experiments. We should prepare for a possibly extended closure.
We know that such a ramp down would have educational, programmatic, human resource, and financial implications. UM leadership is acutely aware of this, and we will all need to work together to manage both the ramp down and eventual start up of our research programs that will be affected if such a closure is mandated. And, should UM reach this decision, we will be working closely with our colleagues at UMOR for follow-on guidance and support.
We are standing by to work with you to identify any potential safety issues and to help you develop an effective plan for a possible ramp down in our research operations. Again, our primary concern is the health and safety of our students, postdocs, staff and faculty.
Please do not hesitate to reach out with any questions, concerns or feedback during this time. We are here to help. You can submit those via this form.
Steven Ceccio, Ph. D.
Vincent T. and Gloria M. Gorguze Professor of Engineering
Professor, Naval Architecture & Marine Engineering
Professor, Mechanical Engineering & Applied Mechanics
Associate Dean for Research, College of Engineering
University of Michigan