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2020 - A message of gratitude and support from Dr. Sam

Published 03/20/2020
Dr. David Sam, president of Elgin Community College.

Dr. David Sam, president of Elgin Community College.

For all ECC's updates and Information regarding COVID-19, visit COVID-19 Information.

Thank you all for your commitment and dedication to our students during these unprecedented times. It is during times of hardship and uncertainty that our Shared Values come alive, guiding our decision-making and solidifying our mission. I am grateful for how our entire ECC family – faculty, staff, administrators, and community - has rallied around our students.

This afternoon, as you may be aware, Governor Pritzker issued a "Stay-at-Home" order for the state of Illinois effective Saturday, March 21, 5:00 p.m. - Tuesday, April 7. While this may be alarming, the goal is to maintain social distancing and make every effort to reduce the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19). Please know that Elgin Community College has already begun implementing many precautionary measures for the health and safety of all. Discussions are currently underway to adjust the college's schedule based on the governor's announcement. We will have an update for you on the evening of Monday, March 23. This announcement will be made via email and text message and posted to the emergency management website.

You may wonder what a "Stay-at-Home" order means for you and your family. It means that you should not leave your home unless it is necessary. Critical businesses such as grocery stores, pharmacies, banks, hardware stores, gas stations, and laundromats will still be open for business. I encourage all of us to heed this directive, take every precautionary step we can, and work together to get through the days ahead.

During this time, students without adequate access to food and toiletries will obtain these resources from Food For Greater Elgin. These resources are available for ECC students with valid student photo IDs. Additionally, the ECC Foundation is partnering with Food for Greater Elgin to ensure that students with transportation issues can still access the food pantry via public transportation or paid-for Uber rides and/or have food delivered to them via the Food for Greater Elgin's proxy ordering service. Food for Greater Elgin has also agreed to expand its service area for ECC students during this unprecedented challenge.

We know that this global health pandemic has upended our lives, leaving us in a state of uncertainty. One aspect of our lives that has not changed is how we care for one another and our students. Amid this crisis, let me share with you some of the ways you and your colleagues are living out our mission:

  • On Monday, March 16, Thursday, March 19, and Friday, March 20, our library staff distributed nearly 200 Chromebooks to students who had no access to technology. There are still a limited number of Chromebooks available. If you know of a student who needs a Chromebook to continue their studies, please reach out to Dr. Gregory D. Robinson, Assistant Vice-President of Student Services and Development / Dean of Students, at
  • On Thursday, March 19, the ECC Foundation launched an Emergency Student Relief Fund to secure resources for students whose lives have been affected by the ongoing pandemic. This fund will help purchase laptops, access to Wi-Fi, and address other needs to ensure that students can safely continue their education. Thank you to everyone who has donated nearly $19,000 so far. You can donate directly on the ECC website. If you have questions, reach out to David Davin, Executive Director of Institutional Advancement and the ECC Foundation, at
  • Faculty and staff have been working around the clock to ensure they are prepared to deliver remote instruction when the spring semester resumes on March 30, and Distance Learning staff are working hard to support them.
  • Wellness Professionals have been working virtually to meet with students dealing with the current challenges related to coronavirus and other issues such as anxiety and depression. Telephone appointments will resume the week of March 30. Students can schedule an appointment with a Wellness Professional by calling 847-214-7390 or emailing their Wellness Professional directly:

Please note that the college is closed for spring break from Monday, March 23 to Sunday, March 29. There will be no access to the campus during this time. Let me also assure you that there have been no confirmed cases of COVID-19 reported at any of the ECC locations at the time of this communication.

While this epidemic has presented many unpredictable challenges, I want to remind you that we are in this together. As we continue to adjust our sails to navigate these unchartered waters, I assure you that learning will continue, and student success remains our top priority. As you spend time with your loved ones, make sure that you also take care of yourselves in the coming weeks. Although we are not all physically together in one place, the ECC spirit of unity is alive and well. Not only will we persevere, but we will also come out stronger on the other side.

Thank you for all that you do.

David Sam, PhD, JD, LLM,

President, Elgin Community College