Pacific Oaks College – Updates on COVID-19 (coronavirus) Outbreak


Please visit this page regularly for the latest updates on Pacific Oaks College’s response to the coronavirus outbreak.

Please scroll down to the bottom of the page to read the updates from the oldest to the most recent. If you have any questions or concerns, please contact [email protected]




Dear Pacific Oaks Students & Community Partners:

Of all the many unknowns in our world right now, the overwhelming truth that I’ve been struck by is the strength of our connection. We have always been strengthened by the power of our community, and you are a vital part of that community.

I wanted to take a moment to commend you on your nimbleness in adjusting how—and where—you are learning, as well as your continued devotion to your educational future.

I am writing you today to share an important update. Based on the many state and local stay-at-home orders still in effect, and with the safety of our community in mind, we have made the decision to continue 100% virtual instruction for the Summer term at Pacific Oaks. Should the local and/or federal ‘safer-at-home’ or ‘shelter in place’ restrictions impacting our Pasadena and San Jose campus be lifted before the end of the Summer term, classes may resume on campus.

If you have any questions about this decision, please reach out to senior academic advisor, Mary Berberian, at [email protected].

I encourage you to remain connected to your classmates and professors, and our larger community, via our social media channels—Facebook, TwitterLinkedIn, and Instagram.

Through our shared experience of these unprecedented times, I know everyone’s future will be affected in many ways we’re not even aware of yet—but your decision to pursue your degree is an important one, and one that we’re proud to continue to support.

We’re in this together—stay safe & be well.


Dr. Jack Paduntin
President, Pacific Oaks College & Children’s School




Dear Pacific Oaks Students & Community Partners:

Although we will maintain all business operations, Pacific Oaks College campuses (Pasadena, San Jose, and offsite cohort locations) will not be reopening before May 1. In addition, to keep our community strong and healthy, the Office of the President has elected to postpone our Commencement ceremony. This is based on recent recommendations from the federal government and the scientists that inform those recommendations. You will be notified on any updates to the scheduling of our annual Commencement Ceremony. We appreciate your cooperation, support and adaptability.

All the best,
Pacific Oaks College




Dear Pacific Oaks Students & Community Partners:

In light of the March 19, 2020 LA Board of Supervisors and Health Department “Safer at Home” order, Pacific Oaks campuses and Children’s School will remain temporarily closed, with plans to return to campus on April 20, 2020, unless informed otherwise by the Office of the President.

All the best,
Pacific Oaks College




Dear Pacific Oaks Students & Community Partners:

As we know, the COVID-19 pandemic continues to grow and impact us. We want ensure that our entire community is safe, informed, and up-to-date.

To promote social distancing and safety of our students and employees during this crisis, our campuses will be temporarily closed starting Thursday, March 19, 2020. Faculty and Staff are expected to return to campus to resume regular business operations on Wednesday, April 1, 2020 unless informed otherwise by the Office of the President.


How it will work:

  • Pacific Oaks College full-time faculty and staff are equipped with laptops and SoftPhone technology. This means that you can call us on our regular office line/extension and it will route directly through our computer as if we are still on campus.
  • GoToMeeting will be used as an additional platform to stay connected with students and the community.
  • Email channels also are open as usual.
  • There will be NO in-person classes at Pacific Oaks College until the end of the Spring Term.
  • ALL Ground/In-Person courses will be held in a virtual format for the remainder of the semester.
  • Students should contact their instructors for information on class meetings and platforms used in the virtual format.
  • On-line courses will remain unchanged.
  • Students should contact their program Dean with questions regarding their program and requirements.

Most importantly, please continue to do your part in practicing social distancing, self-care, and personal hygiene measures to prevent the spread of this virus.

Please let us know if you have any questions or concerns at [email protected].

Please click here for a list of key Pacific Oaks contacts during this time.


In Service,
Pacific Oaks College




Dear Pacific Oaks College Community,

From our initial communications regarding the coronavirus (COVID-19) we have worked to balance concerns for the health of Pacific Oaks College with our responsibility to the wider community. The plans and procedures in this message were made after extensive consultation with health and medical experts, local school leaders, our Board, and our school leadership team.

Starting March 16 (next week) ALL on-ground courses in Pasadena, San Jose and any off-site locations (that have not already moved to VIRTUAL meetings) will be cancelled. Classes will resume on March 23. However, they will be held VIRTUALLY for the remainder of the spring semester. Again, next week NO on-ground classes will be held in Pasadena, San Jose, or off-site cohorts.

Please remember, this is a proactive shift: There remains no confirmed case of coronavirus (COVID-19) in our school community.

Institutional partners across departments are working hard to support successful outcomes for all our community members. Look to your specific department for additional updates regarding your program of study. In the meantime, below are some important notes:

  • Campus is NOT closed. College operations will be in place although classes will not meet in person. Please note that several school activities are being postponed or cancelled.
  • It is critical you check your PO email daily. This is how we will send pertinent information regarding the College.
  • Students will also receive messages via Canvas Announcements, in addition to their PO email.
  • Online courses will continue to meet with NO break or stop.
  • A “Virtual Class” is NOT an “On-Line Class”. Virtual classes will use different technology tools to support distance learning while attending to our unique pedagogy in this time of disruption.
  • Fieldwork/Practicum/Student Teaching concerns will be addressed by the individual departments and may be slightly different for each program. The Deans are aware of this and any credentialing/licensing questions/concerns should be sent to them.
  • Course Instructors should be your first contact regarding the specifics for any class. Please note that we will be spending next week making the transition and the faculty will update the syllabi and they will be available on Canvas on March 23.
  • All students have access to join any GoToMeeting session to which they are invited by their instructor.
  • Commencement is NOT cancelled. Although we are following the developments closely, commencement remains as is currently scheduled. If evidence presents at the end of March, leadership will move to postpone the ceremony, not to cancel it.

We realize that this is challenging for all. We also know that we are PO Proud and Strong as we support our entire community through this process. Students will be receiving important correspondence from their Dean today. Please stay tuned for department specific updates that will inform our next steps together.

In Service,
Pacific Oaks College




Greetings Pacific Oaks College,

We hope that you are well in spite of the concerning and consistently evolving news surrounding the Coronavirus outbreak.  At the time of this communication no individuals within the Pacific Oaks community (Pasadena campus, San Jose branch campus, Children’s School) have tested positive for COVID-19.

Based on guidance from the CA Health Department and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, our Pasadena and San Jose campus sites will remain open at this time. Many of the campus closures are those with amphitheater-style classes, residence halls, and enrollments over 3,000 students. Although it is true that Governor Newsom has recently banned all state gatherings with more than 250 people, our small community can increase safety by practicing personal protective measures. They include but are not limited to:

The Vice President of Academic Affairs (VPAA) and each school dean will be working closely with all faculty and students on the Pasadena campus, at off-site locations, and the Northern California campus to communicate specific plans for course modality options. If you have questions, please contact your instructor first, as they will be provided with the most current information from the VPAA and from the dean of your school. Academic Affairs encourages all students to please check their emails and the POC website regularly since information is being updated daily.

New information is coming in by the hour and we are using it to inform our decisions and plans. There are many variables that could change between tomorrow and Monday and we are attempting to be as proactive as possible. Due to this fluid environment, we want to ask all of our students, faculty, and staff to do the following:

  • Identify a technology plan in the case your coursework is moved to a virtual environment.
  • Make sure you have a supply of all essential medications for your family.
  • Make a child care plan in case you or a caregiver are sick.
  • Understand your employer’s policies regarding leave and options for working from home.
  • Make arrangements for how your family will manage a school closure.
  • Make a plan for how you can care for a sick family member without getting sick yourself.

Our top priority is the safety of our community so please continue to pay close attention to these communications. Please don’t hesitate to let us know if you have any questions or concerns.

In Service,
Pacific Oaks College




As many of you know, the World Health Organization has officially identified the COVID-19 (Coronavirus) outbreak a pandemic. Los Angeles and Santa Clara Counties have both seen their first deaths due to the virus and the city of Pasadena currently has approximately 50 residents under self-quarantine.

At this time, no individuals within the Pacific Oaks community (Pasadena campus, San Jose campus, Children’s School) have tested positive for COVID-19.

We take this situation very seriously at Pacific Oaks College. In order to ensure that we are acting with diligence and deliberateness, we have convened a COVID-19 Taskforce. This group will be led by Dr. Donald Grant, who also serves on the board of Huntington Hospital here in Pasadena. The taskforce consists of representatives from the President’s Office, Human Resources, Faculty, the San Jose campus, and Academic Affairs. We are also in consultation with an external advisory group that includes experts in HR, legal, and external affairs.

This page is meant to keep you updated on what Pacific Oaks Colleges has done and plans to do in response to this current threat. Our decisions and strategy are being guided by: California Dept of Public Health’s (DPH) Guidance on COVID-19 for Higher Education, CA DPH Guidance for County Offices of Ed, Pasadena & Santa Clara County Public Health Departments, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Please don’t hesitate to reach out to this Taskforce if you have any questions or concerns about operations in relation to COVID-19. You can email any questions or concerns that you might have to [email protected]

The following are some of the steps that the college has taken so far:

  • A weekly communication plan has been developed to ensure that important information is being shared across all campuses and off-site cohort locations.
  • An email ([email protected]) has been set up to ensure that two-way communication is optimized.
  • Campus-wide professional deep cleaning is occurring two times per week.
  • The Study Abroad opportunities scheduled for March have been cancelled.
  • Devised a campus closure plan using the CA Department of Public Health guidelines.
  • Identified technology supports to move courses to virtual meetings using GoToMeeting if we have to close campus for the safety of our college community.
  • Students who come to class sick will be asked to leave and join class via GTM.
  • Employees who come to work ill will be asked to return home.

We are currently developing a FAQ that answers the questions many in our community have sent us. Please note that our top priority is the safety of all those who are part of our community and we are working very hard and deliberately to that end.

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact [email protected]