Coronavirus update

Shift to online coursework delivery

  • This is a photo of Hardiing University.

    Update from President Bruce McLarty

    March 12 | 12:40 p.m.

<--- Back to all COVID-19 updates

March 12, 2020 | 12 p.m. | Email notification to campus community from President McLarty

Dear Harding Community,

I am writing to you during an unprecedented time in our nation and in our colleges and universities due to the global spread of COVID-19. We appreciate your prayers and support as we carefully monitor potential impact on the Harding community. As we are among the first schools in Arkansas to have spring break, I have been conferring constantly with the University cabinet as well as health advisors and state and local officials to assess the developing situation and take appropriate action for the health and safety of our students and employees and the communities where we operate. Because of increasing concerns related to COVID-19 and in order to reduce risk of its spread, students of the University campus in Searcy are asked to remain at home or return to their homes instead of reporting back to campus following Spring Break. Effective Monday, March 16, the University is suspending on-campus classroom course delivery and moving to online coursework delivery until further notice in hopes that we will be able to resume on-campus delivery within the next few weeks.

Along with on-campus course delivery, on-campus activities and gatherings are suspended until further notice. While there currently are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the Searcy area or in the Harding community, these measures are being taken to protect the campus and surrounding community from potential exposure to individuals who may have traveled to areas where exposure to COVID-19 might have occurred.

We will notify the Harding community through university ( email and Pipeline of any changes to our status.

Below are related updates and instructions:

Online coursework delivery

Students will be able to find information on the transition to online course delivery in Pipeline by Monday, March 16, and we will alert students as soon as this is available. Students can also expect to hear directly from their teachers next week.

Experiential education

Students currently in the process of completing clinicals, student teaching, internships, etc. will continue subject to their preceptors’ instructions. These students will receive direct communication from their program leadership regarding status.

Campus operations

The University will remain open and employees will continue normal operations during this time. Further instructions will be sent directly to faculty and staff.

Returning to campus

We ask students not to return to campus until further notice. If you have a situation that you believe requires you to return, please contact the Office of Student Life at or 501-279-4331 for approval or instructions. Student athletes should coordinate directly with their coaches regarding the status of athletics.

Upcoming campus events

During the time on-campus classes are suspended, on-campus activities are being cancelled or postponed. One of our more disappointing notifications is that Spring Sing 2020 is being postponed in hopes of being rescheduled once on-campus classes resume. We are in contact with other universities and Great American Conference officials regarding the status of athletics. More information will be communicated directly to athletes and coaches.

Campus visits and tours

During the time on-campus course delivery is suspended, we will postpone individual and campus visit events. We are working on alternative ways to deliver campus previews to prospective students.

These measures are unlike any we have ever had to undertake as a University; each decision is being made with the welfare of the Harding campus community in mind as well as concern for the surrounding community. We believe this decision gives us our best chance to resume on-campus classes this semester. I am deeply saddened that this situation has had a negative impact on the Harding experience of so many and ask you to join me in prayer for peace and healing for all during these challenging conditions.

Dr. Bruce McLarty