Mortarboard
Motar Board - National College Senior Honor Society
 

Coronavirus Statement

Updated March 31, 2020

The National Council commends the creativity and perseverance of all our chapters in this trying COVID Crisis. You are doing a great job for Mortar Board even as you face unknown personal challenge. It has warmed our hearts to see each of our chapters coming together in this time to remain connected and to continue the legacy of our Society by honoring the next class in the best way they can.

 

We’re here for you

Mortar Board wants to assure all our chapters that we are here to support you during this time. If at any time you experience issues and are unsure what to do please contact your section coordinator or the National Office. We are here for you.

 

Continue to select—special permissions granted

We hope, despite shutdowns and uncertainty, you will continue to lead in the amazing way you have been. We are asking that each chapter continue the selection process using virtual alternatives to connect with your chapter.

 

You have permission to use a small committee and an advisor to select new members if it is impossible to pull the chapter together. The Executive Committee and advisors may also conduct selection. Please let the National Office know of your plans.

 

Relaxed CR requirements

The National Office has relaxed the requirements for information needed for approval of your chapter’s CR. If all information is not available, you may supply just first and last name and an email address for each candidate.

 

Tapping creativity

We applaud the chapters who have tapped new members via personal phone calls, video calls and social media!

 

Virtual and rescheduled initiation

Chapters may reschedule their initiation ceremony to fall. However, if you do reschedule, we do encourage you to hold a video call this spring to introduce current and future members. Invite alumni or other speakers to address your new members virtually.  Hold a short online ceremony with an abbreviated version of the initiation script. Let the National Office know if you would like a copy of this shortened initiation.

 

Officer elections

During one of the virtual meetings with new members, please identify a chapter president who can attend the Mortar Board National Conference this summer, scheduled for August 7-9. We are planning as though we will be able to hold the conference safely, and time and good judgement will prevail as the weeks pass and we get closer to the end of summer.

 

Stay connected

We urge all chapters to continue to connect. Despite the need to put physical distance between us, we still connect online. Consider holding a Chapter Chat once a week, where the chapter comes together to discuss a topic, have a speaker, or support a cause though social media.

 

Finances

We are aware this sudden change in plans may have a financial effect. We encourage each chapter to explore online funding opportunities, such as gofundme. Chapters can reach out to alumni to help support the chapter. We will provide you names if you use the alumni information request. For your chapter’s tax id, contact the National Office. The National Office is focused on helping chapters to succeed.

 

We are offering payment plans for chapters unable to pay their $350 conference fee. Complete the online form to request a payment plan today.

 

Thank you for continuing to be the top leaders on your campus.

Posted March 16, 2020

Like you, the National Office and national leadership of Mortar Board continue to watch news from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) about the latest effects of COVID-19 and what we can do to stem the spread of this novel coronavirus.

We here in the National Office are committed to serving chapter leaders who are continuing to work on chapter business and conduct selection remotely. Both volunteers and staff care a great deal about chapters’ success and ensuring that the honor of membership is available to all who are deserving. We are balancing this commitment with our knowledge and compliance with all advisories from the governor of the State of Ohio, where the National Office is located. Our small staff may telework so we can serve all members.

Registration for Mortar Board’s National Leadership Conference opened yesterday! The conference is on August 7, 8 and 9 in Little Rock, Ark., and we encourage chapters who have new officers or members or advisors to register now.

The next in our series of advisor webinars is Monday, March 30. “Those Darn Reports” is the topic. The webinar begins at Noon Eastern and is one hour in length. Please register in advance.

The World Health Organization has extremely good information about the emergent situation in the U.S. and worldwide.

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Posted March 12, 2020

We are watching the latest news about the effects of COVID-19 and institutions’ responses. Many campuses have moved to online classwork. Others still remain in normal operation. We urge that Mortar Board chapters continue to use digital meeting spaces to conduct selection if in-person gatherings are not possible and once candidates are approved, tap using phone, webinar or video.

Our conference is still scheduled for August 7-9 in Little Rock, Ark. Your chapter should continue to plan for election of officers who can attend the conference.

Over its history, because of members’ diligence and care for serving our Society, Mortar Board has survived two pandemics, two World Wars, and countless disruptions in normal operations. Faced with a pandemic yet again, Mortar Board will adjust, safely and resourcefully. You are at the forefront of extending this legacy. We thank you for your determination and concern for your members and your chapter’s transition in this uncertain time.

The National Office wants to do all it can to assist your leadership. To discuss how you plan to go forward, please contact Sarah Pol, Director of Collegiate Programs and Communications, at spol@mortarboard.org or at 614-488-4094 if you would prefer to call.

Watch this video from the World Health Organization about the seven steps to prevent the spread of COVID-19 virus. Your chapter could share this video with other students, faculty and staff if you believe it might play a helpful role in the wellness of your campus community.

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Posted March 10, 2020

At the time of posting on our webpage, the risk of contracting COVID-19 in the U.S. is low, and yet the National Council and National Office are concerned about the well-being of every Mortar Board member. We are monitoring the situation closely and following the advice of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

We urge all collegiate chapters to follow the protocols and guidelines set by your campus leadership in response to  COVID-19. If your chapter can meet, please continue to do so. If this is not possible, communicate virtually or by text or email to continue chapter work and activity. We urge all alumni chapters to follow recommendations of the CDC and of the municipality where your members live.

If you have direct questions about how a chapter should complete requirements for selection or if you have questions about exceptions related to the operation of your chapter, please contact Sarah Pol, Director of Collegiate Programs and Communications, at spol@mortarboard.org. The National Office phone number is 614-488-4094 if you would prefer to call.

Prevention is key, and should include the following actions:

  • Everyone should remain vigilant

  • Ensure good hand hygiene and stay home if unwell

  • Seek medical attention if you are feeling unwell or have flu-like symptoms for more than three days

  • Cover nose and mouth when coughing and sneezing with tissue or flexed elbow

  • Avoid close contact with anyone with cold or flu-like symptoms

  • A sick member should be encouraged to refrain from attending chapter meetings

  • Visit the CDC website for reliable up to date information

Tips for meeting:

  • Use Zoom to meet on video chat with your chapter

  • Conduct chapter business by voting online with either Google docs or Survey Monkey

  • Always follow all campus protocols and guidelines