University of Georgia®
Thursday November 26, 2020


COVID-19 Impact and Updates

University of Georgia COVID-19 Information and Resources Page

What to Expect in Quarantine and Isolation


EMAIL COMMUNICATIONS | FALL 2020 | FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

 

EMAIL COMMUNICATIONS

View previous email communications here.

Fall 2020

Updated 11:11 a.m. August 19, 2020

UPDATE ON OUTDOOR SPACES: To allow for correct social distancing, until further notice, basketball hoops have been removed and no large outdoor space reservation requests will be granted. Residents are also reminded that masks are required—even outdoors—when social distancing requirements cannot be met. 

REPORTING AN EXPOSURE: If you believe you may have been exposed to COVID-19, please use the symptom checker in DawgCheck and follow the instructions given. 

Updated 11:33 a.m. August 15, 2020

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) no longer suggests quarantine for people who have travelled outside the United States. The CDC continues to endorse quarantine for those who may have been exposed. All students should complete the DawgCheck symptom checker daily before leaving their residence hall room and to report positive tests.

Updated 12:45 p.m. July 29, 2020

Students Arriving from Recent International Travel

Students arriving from international travel should stay home and/or quarantine for 14 days after returning from travel, monitor their health, and practice social distancing. Your quarantine period may overlap with academic courses beginning (Aug. 20). Please contact Student Care and Outreach at sco@uga.edu for assistance with contacting and coordinating accommodations with your faculty. For students with on-campus housing assignments, please contact University Housing at housing@uga.edu to receive guidance and assistance. International students may contact International Student Life at isl@uga.edu for guidance and assistance. Once the DawgCheck monitoring and reporting app has been launched (early August), students may follow the instructions for reporting and communication there.

During your 14-day quarantine period, please take the following steps to monitor your health and practice social distancing:

- Take your temperature with a thermometer two times a day and monitor for fever. Also watch for cough or trouble breathing.
- Stay home and avoid contact with others. Do not attend work or school in person.
- Do not take public transportation, taxis, or ride-shares.
- Keep your distance from others (at least 6 feet or 2 meters).
- Use the DawgCheck monitoring and reporting app.

Visit coronavirus.uga.edu for the latest campus messages and information on COVID-19.

Updated 12:15 p.m. June 1, 2020

University Housing is in the process of taking the following steps in common areas beginning August 2020:

· Installing “stand here” mats at each desk to remind people to keep their distance

· Installing plexiglass counter shields to each desk

· Installing sanitizer wipe dispensers in each common space, kitchen and study lounge

· Rearranging and removing seating to adhere to social distancing standards

· Increasing number of sanitizer dispenser stations, including all entrances, hallways and elevator lobbies

· Increasing number of trash receptacles

· Adding touchpoint disinfection every 2-3 hours

· Supplying individual hand sanitizer bottles to each resident

Changes to bathroom cleaning processes for fall 2020

Following spring move out, all rooms were deep cleaned and disinfected, which is our standard protocol.

Once students move in, we have plans to disinfect each community bathroom early each morning (before most residential use) and deep clean each community bathroom late mornings and return each afternoon with a complete disinfectant mist. We also plan to add towel dispensers, soap dispensers and trash receptacles. For their own protection and the protection of others, the housing staff members cleaning student spaces will wear personal protective equipment, including an apron and face shield.

Suite and apartment bathrooms will not be cleaned by housing staff, but we will provide disinfectant wipes for each room.

Updated 11:15 a.m. May 19, 2020

As of this date, University Housing has made the following plans for fall 2020:

· Increasing touchpoint cleaning in common area spaces

· Providing resources for students to self-clean or wipe down bathrooms and common areas

· Possibly limiting the current cleaning schedule of private/shared bathrooms, so our housing staff will not need to enter student rooms on a weekly basis for those configurations

· Considering an adjustment in our guest policy that may temporarily alter the number of guests allowed in students rooms

· Encouraging resident social distancing and other personal hygiene practices

· Implementing a modified residential programming model

· Possibly relocating any affected students to another room, hall or other location in the event of a required self-quarantine or isolation as determined by the University Health Center

Updated 10:10 a.m. May 5, 2020

We understand students and stakeholders may have many questions and concerns about housing as we move closer to fall move in.

Under guidance from the University System of Georgia (USG) and the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), University Housing is developing alternate plans for move in (August 15-20) and programming should the need for social distancing continue. We will provide an update by the end of May.

We are committed to keeping students informed about timelines, deadlines and processes so that you can feel confident and excited about your home away from home.

In fact, beginning Thursday, June 4, fall 2020 residents can expect to receive a weekly update to their UGA email. If you are not a fall 2020 resident and would like to receive these updates, please opt in to our stakeholder email.

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

Are students required to wear masks in the dorms?

Effective July 15, 2020, the University of Georgia—along with all University System of Georgia (USG) institutions—will require all faculty, staff, students and visitors to wear an appropriate face covering while inside campus facilities/buildings where six feet social distancing may not always be possible. Face covering use will be in addition to and is not a substitute for social distancing. Face coverings will not be required when alone in an enclosed office or study room, in campus outdoor settings where social distancing requirements are met, or for students in their own residence hall rooms or suites. Anyone not using a face covering when required will be asked to wear one or must leave the area. Repeated refusal to comply with the requirement may result in discipline through the applicable conduct code for faculty, staff or students. Reasonable accommodations may be made for those who are unable to wear a face covering for documented health reasons; students should follow the Disability Resource Center’s existing accommodations process. 

Students should remember to stay 6 feet apart outdoors, too, whether they have a mask on or not. It takes each one of us to individually make the right decisions to protect each other and our community.

What if I am told I need to quarantine because of exposure to COVID-19?

Quarantine: separates and restricts the movement of students who are believed to be reasonably exposed to COVID-19 to monitor their health for symptoms. Although these students are not symptomatic, because they have had some exposure or close contact with a confirmed case, they should remain in quarantine for at least 14 days after initial exposure.

All students should prepare their own plans now for how they will manage their circumstances in the event they require quarantine during the semester.

Ideally, students who need to quarantine would do so off campus. If a student living on campus is unable to return to a permanent home, they may possibly remain in their own on-campus space or in an alternate location provided by University Housing, depending on their room and bathroom configuration. Student Care and Outreach is available to assist with academic and other concerns.

What if I am told I need to isolate because of a positive (or presumed positive) test for COVID-19? 

Isolation is for sick students – or students who receive a positive COVID test. This separates students who are known (or reasonably believed) to be infected with COVID-19. Students needing to isolate may have received a positive test result or may be diagnosed by a medical professional as being presumptive positive based on their symptoms.

All students should prepare their own plans now for how they will manage their circumstances in the event they require isolation during the semester.

Regardless of a student’s housing arrangements (on-campus vs. off-campus), Student Care & Outreach will be engaging with all students who test positive for COVID-19 and require isolation and will be assisting them based on their individual circumstances. Generally, all students, upon receiving the results of a positive test, should leave campus immediately and return to their primary residence whenever possible, reporting their test results through DawgCheck. For students living on campus who are unable to return to a permanent home, University Housing will support them by providing an isolation space.

DawgCheck is an easy-to-use, COVID-19 self-screening tool. Students, faculty and staff should check their symptoms every day with DawgCheck before they come to campus or leave their residence hall room.

Even if you’re not experiencing new symptoms, responding to DawgCheck every day is critical in supporting the health and safety of our campus and of the Athens community.

Access DawgCheck through the UGA app or at dawgcheck.uga.edu.

Where will I go if I have to isolate on campus?

If students do not have the ability to leave campus, we will have dedicated spaces—including one entire building—where students may isolate. These spaces have exterior exits, microwaves, refrigerators and in-room bathrooms. UGA’s Student Care and Outreach will engage with all students who require isolation and will assist them based on their individual circumstances.

Will the doors of students in quarantine or isolation be marked?

To protect the privacy of our students, we won’t be marking doors. A positive test, however, does trigger a number of actions, including isolation and quarantine protocols, and contact tracing to identify anyone that student may have been in close contact with.

Are guests allowed to visit in the residence halls?

During the pandemic, no visitors or guests will be permitted within a resident’s assigned space. We did not make this decision lightly, attempting to balance healthy practices with recognizing that the residence halls are a home to our students.  While we appreciate that students will reduce guests to keep themselves and their fellow students safe,  if students do have visitors on campus we ask that they engage with them outside, as it is easier to socially distance outside and in large spaces.

Students should remember to stay 6 feet apart outdoors, too, whether they have a mask on or not. It takes each one of us to individually make the right decisions to protect each other and our community.

What is housing doing to maintain a healthy environment in the residence halls and what is residents' responsibility?

The health and wellbeing of residents is our highest priority. We have revised to our rigorous cleaning protocols, increased the frequency of touchpoint disinfection and added soap dispensers, paper towel dispensers, hand sanitation stations and sanitizing wipe dispensers in all buildings. Moreover, we will remind residents that a healthy environment is their responsibility, too. Habits such as wearing masks, staying six feet apart, not allowing visitors and washing hands will be crucial to preventing illness from spreading. Every small act is a reminder that we’re in this together.

How can social distancing take place in dorms with two beds in the same room? 

Once residents move into a shared space, they are considered a social unit. If residents are concerned about living with another person, we suggest frequent cleaning and sanitation. Residents may also sleep head-to-toe to further distance themselves while sleeping.

Are room changes available?

Following move in, room changes will only be made in emergency situations to avoid breaking up social units.

How are the halls to be kept clean?

University Housing has taken the following steps:

- Installed “stand here” mats at each desk
- Installed sanitizer wipe dispensers in each common space, kitchen and study lounge
- Rearranged and removed seating to adhere to social distancing standards
- Increased number of sanitizer dispenser stations, including all entrances, hallways and elevator lobbies
- Increased number of trash receptacles and bathroom soap dispensers
- Added plexiglass counter shields to reception and community desks
- Increased the frequency of touchpoint disinfection
- Supplied individual hand sanitizer bottles to each resident
- Limited occupancy in common areas such as lobbies and study lounges
- Suspended the PIN-pad touchpoints for hall access (access will still require residents to scan their UGA OneCard)
- Added towel dispensers, soap dispensers and trash receptacles
- Community bathrooms are disinfected each morning, and cleaned late mornings and disinfected afternoons.

Suite and apartment bathrooms will not be cleaned by housing staff, but we will provide disinfectant wipes for each room.

Will the residence halls be open during the online learning period beginning Nov. 30?

Yes. The University will remain open after Thanksgiving break and will continue to provide regular campus services such as on-campus housing. Therefore, residents are welcome to remain in their residence hall during the online learning period if they choose to do so, as all residence halls will be open until December 19 at noon. Halls originally identified to remain open during break periods (Brown, Busbee, McWhorter, Payne, Reed, Rooker, Vandiver, University Village and the HSC townhomes) will continue to stay open for residents during winter break, as well. 

Will I need to register to stay on campus if I don’t want to leave for Thanksgiving break?

No, you can remain in your assigned space during Thanksgiving break and through December 19 at noon. If you need to remain on campus beyond December 19, then you will want to be sure you have selected to live in a residence hall or apartment that is open during break periods.

Will there be a refund for the portion of the housing fee covering Nov. 30 - Dec. 19?

Since you’ll have the option to continue to remain on campus during the online learning period, housing fees will not be prorated. In any given year, after 60% of the term (as determined by the Bursar and Treasury Services Division) the University typically does not credit any unused license fees, and since there will only be two weeks from the start of Thanksgiving break to Reading Day, more than 60% of the term will be completed. 

Will the halls be secure once classes shift to online learning beginning November 30?

Yes, all the same staff and security measures will be in place as long as the residence halls remain open. Student staff members (resident assistants and customer community services assistants), as well as professional staff will still be managing the day-to-day operations of the buildings.

Will residents be able to access their space during the online learning period?

Yes. Since halls remain open, residents can access their space as they normally would using their UGA OneCard and room key. At noon on Dec. 19, buildings that close for the break will be locked, so students should take with them what they need until halls re-open Jan. 6 at 2 p.m.

Will the residence halls re-open for the spring 2021 semester?

Currently, the academic calendar for the Spring 2021 Semester has not changed. We expect and are planning to open the residence halls for the spring 2021 semester on January 6, 2021, knowing that we may need to adjust the plans as conditions warrant and as we receive directions from the University System of Georgia and the University’s senior administration.

Will halls be open for the dates that were initially designated for spring break? 

Yes. All residence halls, apartments and townhomes will remain open, even if they would normally close for break periods. Staff will be available and responding to work requests. Operations will continue as normal. 

Is there a fee for staying during those dates? 

There is no fee. 

Have any of the move-in/move-out dates changed for spring? 

No. Move-in for spring is Jan. 6 at 2 p.m., and halls close for summer at noon on May 15. 

Will Dining Services be open? 

Yes, all campus operations will be available as usual. 

Can I go home for the dates that were initially designated for spring break?

As with any other non-break period, residents are free to come and go as they please. 

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