Dear CMC Community:

We write with concern for you and your family, friends, and colleagues in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic and to give you an update on the College’s efforts to support our students, faculty, and staff. As we all work to stay healthy and safe, we are here to support the entire CMC community.

One week ago, we announced a series of unprecedented, decisive actions to protect the safety of our community and persevere in our mission.

We still have no affirmed cases of COVID-19 in The Claremont Colleges, but we have been working hard to impede the exponential contagion of this novel virus here and elsewhere.

First, we want you to know that our community has rallied to the challenge.

By the end of this month, we will have completed the first phase of our transformative work.

  • By Monday, March 16, through a collective effort of staff from Advancement, the Athenaeum, the Soll Center for Student Opportunity, and the Dean of Students Office, we were able to reach every one of our students to make sure we knew their plans, helped them work through the many challenges of an unexpected move, and addressed their financial and logistical challenges.
  • With the help of so many staff throughout the College, nearly all students will have moved home or to another safe location by today, Monday, March 23. Sixty students, for whom that was not possible, will remain in our student apartments, with food delivery, health kits, back-up housing in cases of isolation and quarantine, and many other measures of support. We are providing additional support to meet the needs of all of our students to ensure they have the living conditions, food security, and social support they need to take care of themselves and succeed. See our efforts highlighted in a recent LA Times story.
  • After an extended spring break that ends on March 30, our faculty will be prepared to teach in a virtual format. They are transforming the final weeks of their materials, pedagogy, and strong engagement with students to adapt to this new format. A corps of faculty with expertise in educational technology are providing support and guidance to their peers. We are also making sure that each of our students have all the support they need.
  • On March 20, we communicated our final regular admission decisions to the Class of 2024. Due to the cancellation of tours, visits, and our InsideCMC program, many of our students, faculty, staff, parents, and alumni will be reaching out personally to each accepted applicant.
  • We are taking care of our dedicated staff, too. By March 24, all but a critical group of 12-15 staff will be working from home, and those who are required to work on campus will have back-up support. All staff are on-call to chip in for different assignments as needed.

Second, we seek your advice.

Many of you are working on similar challenges in your many roles at work and in your communities. As you review the full range of FAQs on our webpage, please send us your suggestions so we can adapt and apply the very best ideas and practices. Please e-mail us at

Finally, we appreciate your generous support and many offers of assistance.

We are grateful for the service leadership of our faculty, staff, and students, and the tremendous support from our alumni, parents, and friends. We have been inundated with offers of local, national, and global assistance: from housing our students, to help with internships and post-graduate employment, to a wide range of financial support. This reflects the depth of commitment in our community to persevere in our mission in the face of unprecedented personal, professional, institutional, national, and global challenges.

In response to these offers, we have developed four specific ways for you to help support the needs of CMC students through the challenges we face in the upcoming weeks and months:

  • CMC Community Building: We are developing a communication strategy to counter physical distancing by facilitating strong social connections with students and among alumni. Alumni will be critical partners in connecting with students and interacting to support one another. We hope you will be a part of that effort. We will be back in touch with details. 
  • Internship and Post-Graduate Employment: The Soll Center for Student Opportunity has fielded many questions from students about the viability of their summer internships, future jobs, and job shadow experiences, in an effort to overcome the challenges of the job market and the travel restrictions in place. We endeavor to identify opportunities in each student's home city or region and augment our program with additional remote possibilities, wherever possible. We are asking anyone who may have additional or modified fulltime and internship opportunities to share those details with our team through the Internship & Fulltime Referral Survey.
  • Contribute to the Emergency Fund: The College has been able to address the immediate needs of our students in large part because of philanthropic support from our alumni, parents, and friends. The Student Emergency Fund, along with support from the Kravis Opportunity Fund and other donors, have come to the aid of our students and their families in the past and is even more critically important today. In response to COVID-19, the Student Emergency Fund provided airfare and travel subsidies to get students back home on short notice, packing, shipping, and storage supplies for their belongings, and any necessary technology – such as web cameras or broadband – for students to continue their studies online as we transition to this new modality of virtual instruction at CMC. However, our students will need continued support, especially around the continuation of healthcare, including mental health and prescriptions, adequate lodging, nutrition, and necessary supplies. More information about how to donate can be found online and we can also reallocate any prepaid registration fees for cancelled alumni or athletic events to this fund. Just let us know at
  • Contribute to the Sponsored Internship and Experiences Fund: Each year, we support our first- and second-year students' summer internship experiences. These funds support a variety of costs, allowing students to participate fully in an internship without worrying about financial obstacles. This summer, we anticipate an increase in demand due to international travel restrictions and rescinded offers and would like to support all students in a challenging economy. Gifts designated to the Summer Internship and Experiences Fund will help us provide additional support for all students.
  • While we are humbled by your care and concern for our students, we want you to know that we have plans to support you too. As our students settle into their new routines, we are looking at different ways to connect our alumni community and offer you support and learning opportunities, including faculty presentations, wellness information, and other virtual gatherings.

    In closing, as President Chodosh often reminds us, we know from prior experience that consequences of a crisis are determined in the end by the quality of our response to it.

    We wish you and your family all the best health and well-being, and please feel free to reach out if there is anything we can do for you.

    Thank you for all that you do for CMC and our community.

    All the best,
    Paul, Michelle, and Evan

    Paul Nathan '80
    CMC Alumni Association

    Michelle Chamberlain
    Vice President for Advancement and Student Opportunities
    Dean, Robert Day Scholars Program

    Evan Rutter '06
    Assistant Vice President
    Alumni and Parent Engagement