This page is a work-in-progress and some of the information given here about the MCPH Program’s adaptation to the Coronavirus crisis is subject to change. Please treat the following as provisional.

From the MCPH Program Directors

We are doing our best to remain “at the helm” to help our students through this difficult period as best we can. We know that every one of you will face a unique set of challenges in relation to these events and we want to be sensitive and responsive to your particular circumstances.¬†We’ve created this page to help us centralize and keep track of MCPH-related concerns and to publicize our responses as best we can. Take care of yourselves. — Aaron and Michelle

Important Links

Link to VT’s dedicated Coronavirus (COVID-19) webpage for updates on policies and resources at the University level.

Link to Graduate School Coronavirus (COVID-19) FAQ page

Link to Graduate School Dean’s (March 16th) email to the graduate community pertaining to Coronavirus

Link to VT Library’s “Access to Library Resources in Response to COVID-19” site

Link to Roanoke Times (updated) report on coronavirus (including closings/cancellations)

Link to U.S. Center for Disease Control (CDC) homepage containing key information about the Coronavirus and its spread


In general, all GA/GTAships will continue through the end of the semester, including the fulfillment of the 20hr/week work requirement. GA/GTAs will continue receiving pay. Regarding the MCPH Program GA/GTAships specifically, please see below.

Moss Arts Center GA-ships:

Moss GA supervisors will work to ensure that all assignments can be accomplished remotely. (These assignments are focused on our exhibitions archives, and research/resources for summer and fall exhibitions.)

SOVA GA/GTA-ships:

GTAs are expected to work remotely and to assist instructors in converting courses to online format. GAs are expected to work remotely on their research duties and to remain in communication with their faculty supervisors.

Religion & Culture GA/GTA-ships:

GTAs are expected to work remotely and to assist instructors in converting courses to online format. GAs should communicate with their faculty supervisor regarding the modification of their duties and should work remotely whenever possible.

Summer 2020 Practicum Experiences (internships)

We’re aware that many regional museums and other cultural institutions have closed their doors and some don’t know when they will reopen. As such, it is difficult to know whether MCPH students will be able to pursue their required 180-hour practicum (internship) experiences over the summer (as is typical). At present, we imagine two options:

First, some of these institutions may make remote internship options available, especially as they may need help producing digital materials (website updates, Facebook notifications, on-line exhibits) to engage the public remotely.

Second, MCPH students can do their 180-hour practicum experiences in the typical in-person way during the Fall Semester, presuming these institutions open their doors by then.

These two ideas are tentative and subject to change, so please treat them as such. Contact your advisor to discuss which of these (or some other option) might be best for you.

Unless you and your advisor have already determined otherwise, you should plan to enroll in 3 credits of Project and Report (ART/HUM/RLCL 5904) in the Fall and another 3 credits of 5904 in the Spring. (Recall that the first 3 credits are usually dedicated to collating notes from the practicum experience and to developing a sense of the scholarly literature related to the practicum activities; the second 3 credits consist of the Final Project write-up.)

Spring 2020 Final Projects (and Defenses)

For second-year students: If the fallout of the Coronavirus has impacted your timetable for completing your Final Project, please contact your advisor to discuss your defense date. Keep on the lookout for any changes that the Graduate School makes to this semester’s defense date deadline (currently May 13th.) We’ll try to post that information here, but we can’t guarantee that we’ll do that in due haste.

Questions and Answers

Please send us (Aaron and Michelle) questions about how you should adapt your MCPH-related activities to the impositions of the Coronavirus. If appropriate, we’ll post our answers in general terms (respecting confidentiality) on this webpage so that everyone can benefit from having them in one place.