April 1, 2020

I hope this email finds everyone safe and healthy.

I appreciate all the efforts that you have put into adjusting your learning to an online-only format.  I know that it can be challenging to learn in a different style, and I appreciate the hard work that everyone has put forth.

For now, please continue to participate in your courses in an online-only format.

If you are struggling in any way, please remember that we have resources available to help you.  Reach out to your instructor if you need help.  If you cannot reach your instructor, please click the red “We’re Online/We’re Offline” tab on the right side of the screen at https://insideranken.org  .  If help is “Offline”, type a message and someone will respond to you as soon as possible.

Know that you are not alone during this time.  We are here to help.

Currently, the City of St. Louis is under a “stay at home” order until Wednesday, April 22, 2020.  We are expecting that to be extended.

Based upon that information, we are anticipating having the students back in the shops in early May.

Specific instructions will be sent out on how this will be done.  This timeline and instructions will be determined in consideration of recommendations issued from state and local authorities.

The faculty are working on specific details of how each program will finish out the semester successfully.

The directive is to meet the stated outcomes of the course.

The challenge will be to meet the hands-on outcomes.

This may mean that the semester will be extended for some of you.

The faculty will be sending out information that is specific for each program and each class.

Thank you for your hard work, patience and flexibility during this unique time in our community, nation, and world.

 

Donald J. Pohl
President
Ranken Technical College
4431 Finney Avenue
St. Louis, MO  63113

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March 22, 2020

All students,

Just a reminder that all classes will begin in an online-only format tomorrow, Monday, March 23, 2020.

If you have questions or need assistance, please contact your instructor.

If you cannot reach your instructor, please click the red “We’re Online/We’re Offline” tab on the right side of the screen at https://insideranken.org .  If help is “Offline”, type a message and someone will contact you back as soon as possible.  We have more individuals readily available to answer the “We’re Online/Offline” tab requests, but you do have to leave a message and a valid email address.

DO NOT COME TO SCHOOL. 

If you need something from school, please contact your instructor first for permission.  Your instructor will have to make the appropriate arrangements.  If you just show up without permission or an appointment, you will be turned away.

Please log into https://insideranken.org and continue to check your email frequently for updates (at least daily).

 

Thank you for your cooperation.

Donald J. Pohl
President
Ranken Technical College

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March 18, 2020

Ranken Community,

As you know, Ranken’s primary mission is to provide the comprehensive education and training necessary to prepare students for employment and advancement in a variety of technical fields.  The COVID-19 virus has created a series of unprecedented challenges for the Ranken community when it comes to carrying out that mission.  Important work has already begun, and the faculty and staff have demonstrated unparalleled energy and resolve in an effort to accomplish our mission using alternatives to the techniques and processes we are accustomed to.

Our mission is carried out in a three-part educational formula:  General Education, Technical Education, and Work Ethic.   These components are equally important and how we engage and learn each component will have to change during these challenging times.  Our priority is to support the successful completion of the semester for all of our students.

CLASSES WILL RESUME ON MONDAY, MARCH 23, 2020 IN AN ONLINE-ONLY FORMAT.

PLEASE CONTINUE READING!!!

Below are some specific guidelines and instructions concerning particular classes and how they will resume:

General Education/ BSAM

  • Courses originally scheduled online:
    • Courses originally scheduled online will continue to function as originally planned starting Monday, March 23, 2020 until the end of the semester.
    • Each instructor will share instructions on how to make up any lost time because of the extended Spring Break.
  • On-site seated General Education Courses (Certificate, Associate Degree, and Bachelor’s degree)
    • These courses will be moved fully online starting Monday, March 23, 2020 and will remain online until the end of the semester.
    • Instructors will send out more information specific to each class.
    • We recognize that some students will not be optimally positioned for a successful online learning experience.  Lack of computers, lack of access to reliable internet and other issues may need to be addressed on a case-by-case basis.
    • Students can call or email Shari Elford at 314-286-3305 or [email protected] to make an appointment to discuss individual needs and concerns.

Technical Education (Day and Evening Classes)

The technical component of your education is your major course of study.  Training in a student’s major includes a thorough grounding in the theoretical principles upon which the more specific job-based skills are developed.  That is, the theory, or “why” is taught in concert with the “how.”  The “how” component is developed by extensive practical application of principles through hands-on training.

  • Starting Monday, March 23, 2020 each technical class will focus on the “why”.  The theory will be transitioned to fully online.
    • Instructors will send out more information specific to each class.  It is very important for students to put forth the effort to complete the online activities to help grasp the concepts so students are prepared to apply them in the shop/lab upon return.
    • As stated above, we recognize that some students will not be optimally positioned for a successful online learning experience.  Lack of computers, lack of access to reliable internet and other issues may need to be addressed on a case-by-case basis.
    • Students can call or email Shari Elford at 314-286-3305 or [email protected] to make an appointment to discuss individual needs and concerns.
  • The technical courses will continue in a fully online format until Sunday, April 5, 2020.
  • Based upon current information, on Monday, April 6, 2020 the technical classes will start focusing on the “how” component, the practical application of the “why”.  This is the hands-on component.
    • Specific instructions will be sent out on how this will be done as we near Monday, April 6, 2020.
  • Students that are involved with internships or work study programs will need to follow the guidance and instructions of the host site.  If the arrangements have changed since the beginning of the internship, please contact your instructor and share the details.

Work Ethic

Ranken Technical College, since its very inception, has been committed to cultivating values and attitudes that will lead to positive behavior.  This commitment, which we refer to as work ethic, forms the third component of the education at Ranken.

  • Students in day programs are awarded a work ethic grade for each semester that they are enrolled at Ranken.
  • Technical faculty will assign work ethic grades for students at the end of each semester.
  • Instructors will be sending out specific instructions on how your grade will be assessed for this semester.

It is our collective responsibility to support one another and help ease the anxiety and risk during this period.  COVID-19 represents a serious public health concern.  Ranken is committed to the well-being of our community members.  These measures are being taken to slow the spread of the coronavirus while supporting our students’ education goals and the needs of faculty, staff and students during these challenging times.  Regardless, these are imperfect solutions and the college offices are prepared to offer support.  If you need additional help, please call or email Shari Elford at 314-286-3305 or [email protected] to make an appointment to discuss individual needs and concerns.

You will continue to receive more details during the coming days.  Please be sure to check your Ranken email frequently for updates on this situation.

Thank you,

Donald J. Pohl
President
Ranken Technical College

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March 13, 2020

Ranken Community,

I am writing to announce that we have decided to extend spring break for all in-person and online students at all Ranken locations by one week in response to the spread of COVID-19 (coronavirus). Classes will resume on Monday, March 23, 2020.   Students that are involved with internships or work study programs will need to follow the guidance and instructions of the host site.  Walker Hall residents will be receiving more information specific to the residence hall.

The college offices will remain open.  The additional week of spring break will provide faculty and staff members time to prepare for the return of students.

COVID-19 represents a serious public health concern. Ranken is committed to the well-being of our community members.  These measures are being taken to slow the spread of the coronavirus while supporting our students’ educational goals and the needs of faculty, staff and students during these challenging times.

You will receive more details during the coming days. Please be sure to check your Ranken email frequently for updates on this situation.

Each of us must act responsibly for the benefit of our entire community. If you are sick or become sick, you should stay home from work and class, avoiding close contact with others.

Donald J. Pohl
President
Ranken Technical College

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March 12, 2020

As we near the end of Spring Break, I want to reiterate the message I stated in my previous email sent on March 5, 2020.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is concerned that there will be a spike in influenza and strep when students return from Spring Break, because of travel. Since the early symptoms of influenza and COVID-19 are similar, students experiencing flu symptoms should contact their doctor or other healthcare provider, where they can be tested . Students with flu-like symptoms should follow the guidance of the healthcare professional providing the diagnosis.

For more information directly from the CDC, follow this link: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html

The following are some flu season steps to help prevent the spread of illness:

  • Seek medical attention when you experience flu-like symptoms.
  • Do not go to class, work, etc.… until the symptoms are gone (especially the fever).
  • Disinfect your living quarters and personal items such as books, computer, cell phones, vehicles, equipment, etc… using Lysol or other disinfectants.
  • Wash recently worn clothes in hot water.
  • Cover your nose and mouth when coughing or sneezing.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

I want to strongly encourage anyone who is experiencing symptoms to stay at home.  DO NOT COME TO CAMPUS.  I realize that the Ranken attendance policy is strict and does not encourage staying at home when you are sick.  We will continue to hold face-to-face classes and labs. However, effective immediately, Ranken is suspending the college attendance policy. If you are sick, do not attend class.  Attendance will still be recorded as Present, Tardy or Absent; however, you will not be dismissed from a course or the college for exceeding the allowable number of absences.  Again, the recorded attendance will be an accurate representation of whether you were in class or not; however, you will not be dismissed if you exceed the allowable number of absences.  We are not requiring you to provide any documentation from a doctor or healthcare provider to justify the absence.  The attendance policy will be suspended through the rest of the current Spring Semester.

I appreciate your cooperation and patience as we navigate this challenge to keep every member of the Ranken community healthy and safe.

Donald J. Pohl
President
Ranken Technical College

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March 5, 2020

Students,

As we near the end of the last week before spring break, I want to wish you a safe and rejuvenating time off.

It is important to come back from break mentally refreshed and ready to take on the remaining weeks of this academic year. We are past the halfway mark of the semester, but there is still plenty of time left.  That is good news especially if you aren’t quite where you want to be in your course work, but it also gives us the break at a very welcome time.

In short, you’ve earned spring break. Of course, there are many ways you can choose to spend your time. Some of you are going on trips; others may be traveling with friends, spending time with family or staying local to work. I hope you enjoy the week however you may spend it.

Please remember that “Living life to the fullest” is not the same as “Living foolishly”. It is especially appropriate to remember this as we head toward spring break. You may only live once, but engaging in dangerous, harmful or hurtful behavior can result in consequences that will follow you for the rest of your years.

Take proactive steps to keep yourself healthy.

With information about COVID-19 (Coronavirus) increasingly in the news, the Ranken Technical College community should be aware of the current local situation relative to the virus, as well as helpful tips on staying healthy. Ranken is monitoring guidance from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and state health agencies regarding influenza and COVID-19.  More information directly from the Centers for Disease Control can be found by following this link: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html

To this point, COVID-19 is still relatively rare in the U.S. This is, however, an active time for influenza, and the early symptoms are similar (including fever, coughing, chills, and congestion that develop quickly).

The CDC in the state reports that the St. Louis metro area is currently experiencing high rates of “influenza-like illness.”

There is some concern that there will be a spike in influenza and strep when students return from Spring Break, because of travel. Since the early symptoms of influenza and COVID-19 are similar, students experiencing flu symptoms should contact their doctor or other healthcare provider, where they can be tested for influenza. Students with flu-like symptoms should follow the guidance of the healthcare professional providing the diagnosis.

The following are some flu season steps to help prevent the spread of illness:

  • Seek medical attention when you experience flu-like symptoms, especially if you or someone you have been in close contact with has travelled outside of the USA within the past 14 days.
  • Do not go to class, work, etc.… until the symptoms are gone (especially the fever).
  • Disinfect your room, books, computer, cell phones, vehicles, equipment, etc… using Lysol or other disinfectant.
  • Wash recently worn clothes in hot water.
  • Cover your nose and mouth when coughing or sneezing and wash your hands frequently.

During spring break, personnel will disinfect all high-traffic areas in all buildings throughout Ranken.

Enjoy your spring break. Be thoughtful and safe. Come back ready to take on the rest of the semester!

Donald J. Pohl
President
Ranken Technical College