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Columbus State University

January 21, 2021 - COVID-19 Update: Pre-semester guidance and reminders

Dear Students, Faculty and Staff:

As we prepare for the start of the spring semester, Columbus State University will still continue to modify the way we conduct business, serve students, and collaborate with each other as we return to a more active campus. For your convenience, here are reminders and assurances of the work being done ahead of the official start of the spring semester on Monday:

Health and Safety Protocols

All current protocols - face coverings indoors and outdoors, physical distancing, and stringent hand-washing - remain in effect. Hand-sanitizing and temperature-check stations remain distributed throughout campus.

Heightened sanitizing protocols in offices and common spaces will continue to be applied. Deeper cleanings - triggered by feedback received through our online self-reporting form - will be requested by the COVID-19 Response Team and coordinated between the team and University Support Services.

Entry testing is not a requirement for returning to campus, however, you are encouraged to seek free testing, especially if you have been at risk of exposure during the past two weeks.

If you are experiencing symptoms or feeling unwell, please stay home and self-report those symptoms or a positive test.

Meeting Etiquette

In-person meetings should be scheduled only when absolutely warranted, and when held, strictly adhere to the previously mentioned health and safety protocols. Otherwise, virtual meetings will continue to be the default for conducting university business.

Employees may have a single visitor in their office for a face-to-face meeting, if six-foot physical distancing and face-covering protocols are observed. If the office is large enough, two visitors may meet if physical distancing and masks protocols are followed. These exceptions must be approved by the appropriate vice president or division leader.

Two to six individuals may meet in a conference room, if face-covering protocols are followed and the space is large enough to accommodate six-foot physical distancing for all in attendance.

Meetings that would include six or more people must be moved to an appropriate classroom or auditorium where six-foot physical distancing can be observed by all, while everyone continues to follow face-covering protocols.

Meetings that include in-person attendees should still be offered virtually so that any or all individuals can attend virtually if they prefer.

Face Mask Distribution

CSU will redistribute new face masks beginning Friday for faculty and staff, and into next week for students as well. Those packets will include two CSU-branded masks and two plain masks.

  • Friday, Jan. 22, 11:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Rec Center Multipurpose Room (Main Campus); 3 p.m. to 5 p.m., RiverPark Campus Welcome Center; faculty and staff only for both locations
  • Monday, Jan. 25, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., RiverPark Campus Welcome Center; students, faculty and staff
  • Tuesday, Jan. 26, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Clock Tower (Main Campus); students, faculty and staff
  • Wednesday, Jan. 27, 11 a.m. to 1 p.m., Rec Center Multipurpose Room (Main Campus); students, faculty and staff

Additional Questions and Concerns

We will continue to publish self-reported data into the spring semester. As of Monday, there were 36 active positive, self-reported cases on campus - nearly all of which represent holiday-related or off-campus exposures. A portion of these is rolling off the active cases list as the week progresses.

If you have concerns not addressed here, please submit those through our COVID Questions and Ideas Form. Self-reporting positive test results, exposure to those who have tested positive, or COVID-like symptoms also remains vital to maintaining a healthy and safe work environment.

On Friday, Jan. 22, Response Team Co-chairs Shana Young and Julio Llanos will host a "COVID-19 Self-reporting and Protocols" session at 9 a.m. as part of our Faculty and Staff Welcome Week events. The Q&A session is open to all faculty and staff; register online to participate.

Thank you for all you are doing to help us welcome back one another back to Columbus State in a safe and conscientious way.