20.03.2020

To all members of the University of Salzburg

Rektor Hendrik Lehnert speaks to all members of the University of Salzburg.

Dear colleagues and co-workers at the University of Salzburg,  

the statements by Chancellor Kurz made during today’s press conference, but above all the fact that we have now passed the first 10 days of the restriction regarding movements in public space, prompt and motivate me to express my sincere gratitude to all of you. Without your tireless efforts, your positive attitude in this challenging times and your constant confidence and willingness to help, the University of Salzburg would not be able to function as well as it currently does.

The measures taken by the government, fully supported by the entire Rectorate, are now beginning to take effect. Daily infection rates have decreased within the past few days. This means that thanks to the discipline of the Austrian people, the model proposed by the government has proven to be effective. We are indeed without alternatives if we want to avoid a situation like the one in northern Italy that arose despite immense effort and high quality of medical care.

As presented in today's press conference of the Federal Government, the entirety of measures that are currently being implemented need to be maintained until and including Easter Monday (April 13). In this sense, I want to appeal to you and your conscience: minimize your social contacts and adhere to hygiene and precautionary measures. This will result in keeping the curve of infection incidence and prevalence flat, so we can weather the crisis.

This requires all of us to act decisively and collectively, comparable to the strategic Testudo-formation from ancient Rome: this formation served to protect the advance under strong enemy fire. Our collective efforts in the fight against the corona pandemic will prove to be just as successful.

The Rectorate and the University’s support team will try to help you as much as possible in maintaining daily routines in teaching and administration as well as the current situation allows. We provide regular updates on new developments related to Covid-19 and update the FAQs on the University’s website. Naturally, we are available for questions and happy to advice on any problem you might encounter. If there are any ambiguities due to the currently extremely challenging situation, please do not hesitate to contact me or another member of the Rectorate.

We, the whole Rectorate Team, are convinced that thanks to your great commitment and support there will be a positive change in the near future.

Therefore, once again, my heartfelt thanks to you for your support and endurance. Stay healthy, take care of yourself, your family, partners, friends and neighbors.

Very best, 

Hendrik Lehnert

For the whole rectorate team