Oregon Health Sciences University (OHSU) and Portland State University (PSU) School of Public Health

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A park with many trees is covered in snow, while pedestrians walk by and a streetcar passes in the distance

What to Expect as We Start Winter Term

Remote learning continues as we round the corner of a year with COVID-19


To our School of Public Health students, faculty, and staff,

Winter in Portland means watching the fog lift over the city to reveal Mt. Hood. Waiting for the first snow to fall. Enjoying a cup of coffee or cocoa on a cold, frosty morning. Getting your skis ready for a trip to the mountain.

This January, all that we love about Portland during the winter is still here for us, but things on campus and in our communities will still look very different than they did a year ago. With the COVID-19 virus continuing to spread, we need to continue to mitigate the risks, including maintaining social distance, wearing masks, and limiting close contact with others when indoors.

Accordingly, our two universities are continuing remote learning for the Winter Term, with all graduate and undergraduate courses at SPH being taught virtually.

Over these past months, our students, faculty, and staff have risen to the challenges of these extraordinary times. Our universities have taken steps to provide expanded academic support, technology needs, health & counseling services, and other resources to ensure students’ academic success. In addition, staff at both universities have worked with community partners to help address the non-academic needs of our students, including food, housing, and more. Please follow these links to find helpful academic and non-academic information and support for graduate students at Oregon Health & Science University and for undergraduate students at Portland State University. SPH has also provided a centralized online site for additional resources.

While the offices at SPH will be physically closed until further notice, our staff is working remotely. Don’t hesitate to reach out to sphcomms@ohsu.edu or to sphadmin@psu.edu with any specific questions or concerns.

If you have any questions about what the winter term course format adaptations mean for you or your academic program, please reach out to your Academic Advisor or Program Director, or to Associate Dean for Academic Affairs Rick Johnson (johnsori@ohsu.edu), Associate Dean of Student Affairs Liana Winett (lwinett@pdx.edu), or Assistant Dean for Undergraduate Affairs Belinda Zeidler (zeidlerb@pdx.edu).  If you feel you may need assistance with accessibility to support your success, please contact Associate Dean of Student Affairs Liana Winett (lwinett@pdx.edu).

We understand that another term of remote learning and time spent in social distancing is challenging, both logistically and emotionally.  But, as public health practitioners, we must continue to do everything we can to reduce the spread of COVID‑19 and to protect ourselves, each other, and our community. So let us each continue to do our part to mitigate risk, to actively demonstrate our care for the physical and emotional well‑being of others, and to rally as a community to ensure a successful winter term.

And, remember to take time to watch the fog lift, to savor a cup of cocoa, and to watch the snow fall. We will all be more than ready to enjoy it together again soon.