UNC Charlotte Introduces Dr. Sharon Gaber as the School’s 5th Chancellor

CHARLOTTE, NC – The new chancellor of UNC Charlotte was introduced on Wednesday. The former president of Toledo University outlined her how they plan to bring students back to school during a pandemic. 

“We know we have to get on the front end of making sure people are careful and safe and we want to ensure that,” said Dr. Sharon Gaber, the UNC Charlotte chancellor. 

Gaber is the 5th chancellor in UNC Charlotte’s history. She says she is focused on preventing, monitoring and planning for any sort of issues that COVID may bring this fall. That includes testing the water. 

“So in our residence halls to be able to do wastewater testing so we can get on the front end of a potential outbreak,” said Gaber. 

Every student returning to campus this fall will get a bag that includes masks, hand sanitizer, and information about the campus safety measures. 

Fifty percent of the classes are all online. The other 50% are either virtual or a hybrid. 

“Lots of people want face to face, lots of people want the online and we’re trying to walk the tightrope to provide both modes. And do it in a safe, effective way,” said Gaber.

Mecklenburg County Health Director Gibbie Harris says they’re working closely with college campuses to mitigate any COVID issues that she says will likely arise.  

“You cannot bring that many people back into our community where we still have widespread COVID, and not expect there to be cases,” said Harris. 

While enrolment for this fall is up; Gaber says the school’s financials are a serious concern. 

“There is a cost to us that had not been a budget line. So we are having conversations about what we might do with either some sort of a cut or reallocation internally,” said Gaber.

In unprecedented times, the new chancellor says they must be flexible and ready to change as quickly as the information comes in. 

“If we have to shift to a fully online modality, we can do that,” said Gaber. 

The first day of classes is scheduled for September 7th.