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University of Michigan President Mark Schlissel announced Monday that all spring and summer term courses at the university's three campuses will be conducted remotely.

"This decision aligns with our ongoing efforts to respond to the pandemic, by maintaining this critical part of our mission while encouraging social distancing," he said in a letter to the university community.

Schlissel said he is asking UM's schools and colleges to prioritize programs and coursework that allow current students to keep working toward their degrees. Additionally, schools and colleges will have the flexibility to cancel programs that cannot be delivered with high quality in a remote format.

Schlissel made the announcement following Gov. Gretchen Whitmer's order Monday for residents to stay at home through April 13 to mitigate the spread of the virus.

"This has been a challenging time for everyone in our community," he said. "We’ve been affected personally — and tragically — by the spread of the virus. We’ve been asked to think and work differently, under considerable time pressures and growing stress.

"We’ve also demonstrated our strength and resilience as students, faculty, staff and community members. While the COVID-19 pandemic has placed extraordinary demands on our university and its people, your response has exceeded the extraordinary."

kkozlowski@detroitnews.com

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