Special CSUPERB Newsletter - COVID-19 Issue



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Special CSUPERB Newsletter - COVID-19 Issue
By CSUPERB Newsletter • Issue #35 • View online
We are following the course of the COVID-19 pandemic as well as guidance to mitigate its spread from CSU, regional, state and federal sources
Based on San Diego State University (SDSU) guidance (where the CSUPERB program office is hosted), we are working remotely starting today through the end of March, at which time we will revisit our plans.
What does it mean that CSUPERB is “working remotely?”
CSUPERB has temporarily closed the program office at SDSU. Being a system-wide program, most of you work with us remotely anyway so we don’t expect the program office closure to affect operations significantly. The backdrops to our Zoom-hosted meetings will change! CSUPERB staff will be available during normal business hours (8:30 AM–5:00 PM) Monday through Friday.
Can I reach someone at CSUPERB by phone?
You can still call the main phone line: 619-594-2822. We’ll be checking voicemail frequently and are working to get messages forwarded to email. So - leave a voice message! Alternately, please email csuperb@sdsu.edu.
Will CSUPERB still be hosting meetings?
We are already Zoom pros when hosting our operational meetings and webinars. We’ll be scaling up that experience this spring! We’ve moved our in-person spring grant reviews to Zoom and review committees are already at work. We’ve also moved our April Strategic Planning Council and Presidents’ Commission meetings to Zoom.
How long does CSUPERB plan to work remotely?
This plan is in place through the end of March but all indications suggest this will go on longer. We will announce updates by the end of March on plans for April. 
What about CSUPERB travel grants?
The COVID-19 outbreak is resulting in the cancellation of scientific meetings across the globe, as well as CSU campus restrictions on both international and non-essential domestic travel. These disruptions are already impacting Spring and Fall 2019 Travel Grant recipients and we anticipate the Spring 2020 Travel Grant recipients will be affected as well.
For CSUPERB-supported travel impacted by the outbreak, we will consider changes to conferences attended, data collection plans, or field studies, when the abstract or proposed work remains mostly the same as the one originally approved by the travel grant review committees. Some changes are expected since applicants may be further along in their research or the author list may evolve with time and delays.
CSUPERB will also consider extensions of time in which the travel grant can be used. This comes with a caveat: grant recipients must still be employed by or enrolled at a CSU campus when the award is ultimately used.
When you are notified of a conference cancellation or travel restrictions, contact CSUPERB once you have made new plans to use your travel grant. Send CSUPERB (csuperb@sdsu.edu) an email outlining your new travel plans, as well as a statement regarding how the abstract for the new meeting or work plans relate to your original travel grant proposal.  
If your meeting is cancelled and you do not plan to use your travel grant for a different meeting or data collection, please notify CSUPERB as soon as possible.
What about summer research experiences?
We all know that full-time summer research experiences are impactful and transformational for CSU students. In fact, we are getting ready to make 2020 Presidents’ Commission Scholar Awards to students system-wide. We are monitoring the situation as it relates to research activities and system-wide guidance. We are already communicating with program directors of other summer research programs (COAST, REU’s, CSU LSAMP, etc.) to share guidance and best practices. We plan on including COVID-19 related guidance in award letters this spring.
Our hearts are heavy at the personal toll The Great Pause will have on student trajectories, faculty research goals, and STEM education and instruction system-wide.
Keep tweeting using the #CSUPERB hashtag so we can remain engaged and supportive as a system-wide biotechnology community (see Bree Grillo-Hill’s tweet from SJSU: https://twitter.com/pHlyLab_SJSU/status/1239690268246302720). It’s heartening to see the sharing going on via Twitter as faculty move labs, classes, and group meetings online.
Stay safe and healthy - we’re thinking of you all in these strange times. Let us know if we can help.


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CSUPERB Newsletter

The CSU Program for Education and Research in Biotechnology provides grant funding to seed research projects and curriculum redesign efforts. We also run CSU I-Corps to help researchers investigate biotechnology commercialization. We organize the annual CSU Biotechnology Symposium. The CSUPERB newsletter publishes the fourth Friday of each month. CSUPERB Data Dashboard: https://csuperb.org/grants/csuperb-data-dashboard/

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