Safe Return to Campus Plan

Phased Approach to Reopening the HSU Campus

  • PHASE ONE
    Designated essential staff return to work on campus on June 1st.
  • PHASE TWO
    Additional designated essential staff return to work on campus on June 8th.
  • PHASE THREE
    Summer 1 and 2 sessions courses will be via online learning.
    Most other staff and 12-month faculty will return to work on campus no later than July 6th.
  • PHASE FOUR
    Based on our experiences from previous phases, we plan to commence Phase Four in August, presuming health and safety protocols are followed.  Phase Four will coincide with the start of the Fall semester. At present, we plan on having students on campus for face-to-face instruction as well as remote learning options.

Safe Return to Campus Core Responsibilities

The following Core Responsibilities will apply to every member of the HSU campus community.

  1. Daily health monitoring
  2. Physical distancing
  3. Use of face coverings and face masks
  4. Good personal hygiene
  5. Appropriate use of campus spaces
  6. Enhanced cleaning measures
  7. Protecting the vulnerable and the community
  8. Reporting symptoms or exposure

Perhaps most importantly, the university will expect students to comply with the letter and the spirit of its conduct policies in the Student Handbook:

Hardin-Simmons employees and students should strive to conduct themselves in accordance with Christian principles both on and off campus. Recognizing the developmental stage of most university students, the university policy sets boundaries and establishes disciplinary procedures that allow administrators to work with students as they mature and learn. The guiding principle recognizes the sinfulness and weakness of man and the redemptive, forgiving nature of God.

The mission of the Student Life staff is to work with students in a redemptive stance for as long as a student shows a willingness to grow and learn.

The university’s expectations will be the highest when a failure to meet these standards may compromise the health and safety of others or severely disrupt the university’s efforts to provide a safe and productive environment for the entire campus community. Any student whose conduct poses a threat to the health and safety of anyone on campus may be removed from campus immediately pending application of the disciplinary process.

Students, we are counting on you to follow the rules, which are more important now than ever!

To help prevent the spread of COVID-19 and reduce the risk of exposure, you are required to:

  • Submit the mandatory health screening questionnaire prior to your first day back on campus. You will not be allowed to come to class or other areas on campus until you have completed this necessary step. This form will be emailed to your HSU student email address.
  • Monitor your personal health status daily (self-screening temperature check and review of symptoms).
  • Commuter students must not come to campus and residential students must not leave their campus living quarters if they have any of the following symptoms1
    • Cough
    • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
    • Chills
    • Repeated shaking with chills
    • Muscle pain
    • Headache
    • Sore throat
    • Loss of taste or smell
    • Diarrhea
    • Feeling feverish or a measured temperature greater than or equal to 100.0 degrees Fahrenheit
    • Known close contact with a person who is lab confirmed to have COVID-19
  • The university will spot check for temperatures in buildings around campus periodically.

If you develop symptoms while on campus, immediately put on your face mask and leave the area, then report as outlined in the Reporting Symptoms or Exposure section of this plan.

Campus housing, athletics programs, and/or some clinical programs with unique risks associated with their operations may establish more stringent controls for students, including, but not limited to, daily temperature checks and health status questionnaires.  Student confidentiality will always be safeguarded during such procedures.

Please note: HSU faculty and staff cannot provide medical or nursing assessment, consult with you about your symptoms or possible diagnosis, or recommend treatment. 

Due to the limited availability of COVID-19 tests, HSU will not offer testing resources on campus.  If you suspect you need a COVID-19 test, or are instructed to be tested, contact your personal healthcare provider or see area resources for testing at https://www.dshs.state.tx.us/coronavirus/testing.aspx.   The City of Abilene’s COVID-19 website provides information about local resources at https://www.abilenetx.gov/covid19. Hendrick Health System has COVID-19 screening information and access to an online screening form at https://www.hendrickhealth.org/main/covid-19-testing.aspx.

HSU is not responsible for any healthcare expenses you may incur while enrolled as an HSU student. HSU strongly recommends that each student maintain healthcare insurance.  Students may be required to show proof of individual medical insurance acceptable to HSU as a condition of participation in some university programs or activities.

Where can I shop for health insurance?  If you do not currently have healthcare insurance, you may visit HealthCare.gov to access the healthcare marketplace. Some healthcare insurance policies require you to use an approved network of doctors, hospitals, and clinics.  Please contact your insurance provider for details, and if applicable, obtain a list of approved healthcare providers in the Abilene area to determine what steps, if any, you should take to change your point of service (POS) to our area. The zip code for Abilene is 79601.

Shop for insurance: Health Care Marketplace (healthcare.gov), Texas Health Options (http://texashealthoptions.com/)

What health supplies should I bring to campus with me?  Be sure to bring your insurance card and original social security card with you when you come to HSU.  Make a health kit that includes at least two cloth face coverings, hand sanitizer, tissues, pain relievers, digital thermometer, allergy medication, and other medicine used occasionally.  Also include plenty of Band-Aids, antibiotic ointment, ACE wrap and powdered Gatorade.

HSU will provide each residential student one digital thermometer.  Commuter students may request a digital thermometer while supplies last.  Additional thermometers and other health supplies may be purchased at a local retailer but are not distributed on a regular basis.

To be together, we must remain apart. 

Physical distancing is among the most important factors to mitigate potential risk of exposure to COVID-19.  Increasing the physical distance between individuals can reduce transmission of the virus, and everyone must consistently follow physical (social) distancing practices.

In all shared spaces, maintaining physical distancing of at least 6 ft is required.  It does not come naturally to most people, because we live and work in a community.  It will take a conscious effort on everyone’s part, every minute of every day. We can do it!

If you are in classrooms, common areas, meetings or other group settings, you must sit at least 6 ft apart.  Allow for physical distancing in an orderly manner when you enter and exit these venues.

Avoid forming lines.  It’s common to run into friends around campus, say good morning, start chatting as you’re walking toward a building entrance–and next thing you know, you’re less than 6 ft apart.  If you enter or exit buildings, classrooms, restrooms, or other areas where lines may form, please step back and give the person in front of you appropriate space.

When you must form lines, maintain at least 6 ft of distance between individuals.  In many areas of our campus where lines can form, floor markings have been placed to provide a visual aid for physical distancing.

Please do not hold doors open for others at this time.  Physical distancing can be compromised.

It’s also easy to walk right up to a desk or counter (and the person behind it) with a task in mind. Please be particularly mindful of maintaining physical distance when you walk toward those sitting at a desk, computer, lobby/counter area or office. For those of you who work in such areas, polite reminders are appropriate. So is politely stepping back or rolling your chair back.

Signage will be available to encourage the implementation of physical distancing measures.

Avoid handshaking and other greetings that require physical contact.  Greet people in new and friendly ways.  It’s normal to walk toward someone to shake their hand, but you can wave and smile (behind your mask) instead!

In the absence of signage, stay to the right side of any hallway or stairs while others are passing.

Residence Halls:

  • Residence Halls will not be open for opposite gender visitation.
  • Non-HSU students will NOT be permitted inside the Residence Hall lobbies or student resident rooms.
  • Residents MUST bring at least 2 masks prior to moving in (will be verified prior to receiving a room key).
  • Residents MUST wear their masks outside of their assigned residence hall room, apartment, or campus house.
  • Students exhibiting symptoms are encouraged to be tested. Residents will then have the option to go home or self-isolate/quarantine on-campus at the designated spaces inside the residence halls for 10 days from first symptom and 24 hours fever off medication. If resident decides to remain on campus in self-isolation/quarantine, the RD/RA will coordinate meals for the resident that will be delivered outside of the designated living area.
  • Resident is responsible for contacting faculty or supervisors if they must self-isolate/quarantine.
  • Residents will not receive a refund for housing if they decide to live at home after the 8th class day.
  • If the university decides to move to remote learning, there may be, but no guarantee, of a pro-rated credit of the student resident housing and meal plan cost applied to the account.

In accordance with CDC guidelines,2 all HSU community members are required to properly wear face coverings or face masks in all common areas and shared environments on campus and in alignment with other guidance about the use of face coverings on campus.  The latter includes when in common areas, hallways, restrooms, elevators, or university-provided group transportation (i.e. vans).  Face masks must be worn in classrooms and lecture halls at all times.

Cloth face coverings are meant to protect other people in case the wearer is unknowingly infected but does not have symptoms.  Cloth face coverings are not surgical masks, respirators, or other medical personal protective equipment.  Information on cloth face coverings can be found at www.cdc.gov/coronavirus.

Face coverings must cover your mouth and nose at all times.  When used properly, face coverings and face masks can reduce transmission of the virus.  Appropriate use of face masks/coverings is important in minimizing risk to the wearer and those around them.

A face mask/covering is not a substitute for physical distancing.

Students certainly may but are not required to wear masks in the following areas, unless specifically instructed to do so:

  • Outdoor areas of the campus, as long as appropriate physical distancing is maintained.
  • Inside your own residence hall room, campus apartment, or campus house.

Students are required to furnish their own face coverings or face masks that conform to CDC guidelines; you should plan to bring at least two to campus.  

Students are required to have a face covering in their possession at all times, while on campus and to be prepared to put it on if needed or instructed to do so.

The HSU Bookstore has both cloth and disposable face coverings available for sale while supplies last. Students who cannot financially afford their own mask or face covering may contact Student Life at 325-670-1859.

Face masks and other personal protective equipment may be furnished to students in certain clinical or laboratory settings.

All face coverings should be routinely washed or discarded, depending on the frequency of use and the manufacturer’s instructions.

Cloth face coverings are not respirators or disposable face masks; they will not protect you from exposure and are only intended to help contain your respiratory droplets from being spread to other people.

If you are unable to wear a face covering, it is being advised that the student would need to engage in remote learning.

All members of the HSU community are expected to maintain responsible personal hygiene and etiquette.

  • Hands should be washed or sanitized frequently.
  • Faces should be covered when sneezing or coughing.
  • Individuals should not come to campus if they are sick.
  • The touching of shared surfaces should be limited to reduce the spread of the virus.
  • Restrooms are equipped with hand soap.
  • Hand sanitizer stations will also be readily available in multiple campus locations and may be mandatory in some areas. Student are encouraged to bring small bottles of hand sanitizer with them to campus.
  • To encourage good personal hygiene, signage is posted throughout campus.

Coughing and Sneezing Etiquette

Covering coughs and sneezes and keeping hands clean can help prevent the spread of serious respiratory illnesses like influenza, respiratory syncytial virus (RSV), whooping cough, and COVID-19.Germs can be easily spread by:

  • Coughing, sneezing, or talking
  • Touching your face with unwashed hands after touching contaminated surfaces or objects
  • Touching surfaces or objects that may be frequently touched by other people

Covering coughs and sneezes and washing hands are especially important for infection control measures in healthcare settings, such as emergency departments, doctor’s offices, and clinics.

To help stop the spread of germs: 

  • Bring a supply of tissues with you.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze.
  • Throw used tissues in the trash.
  • If you do not have a tissue, cough or sneeze into your elbow, not your hands.
  • Remember to immediately wash your hands after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.

Be mindful of frequently touched items: doorknobs, elevator buttons, copy machines, etc.

  • Avoid sharing telephones (desk phones or cell phones).
  • Avoid sharing pens, tape dispensers, staplers, tools, etc. Have your own pen handy.
  • Avoid passing papers around.

Outdoor Campus Spaces: Sidewalks, Campus Pathways and Near-Building Outdoor Amenities

As mentioned in the Physical Distancing section, maintaining at least 6 ft distance from others is required on the HSU campus to avoid exposure to the COVID-19 virus. Wear a face mask at all times if physical distancing is unpredictable or difficult to maintain.

Physical distancing is especially important for people who are at higher risk.  Everyone on campus must follow these physical distancing practices:

  • Stay at least 6 ft away from other people in all directions.
  • Do not gather in groups.
  • Stay out of crowded places and avoid lines when possible.

Entering Campus Buildings

Hand-sanitizing stations will be available inside the main lobbies of buildings.  Everyone will be encouraged to use ADA openers, which can be pushed with the elbow, rather than the door handles, and to maintain physical distancing at all times.

Building Entry/Exit Control

Your HSU ID Card may be required for entry into certain campus facilities, so please have it with you at all times.  To maintain physical distancing, do not hold open doors for any other person.  Be mindful to follow any directional signage and be prepared to change your daily routine to adhere to any new foot traffic patterns.

After entering a building, sanitize your hands at the nearest sanitizer station and follow signage and all physical distancing guidelines outlined herein.

Elevators, Corridors, Lobbies and Stairs

Students must wear face coverings when using elevators, corridors, and stairs and walking through lobbies and atriums.

Using stairs whenever possible will assist vertical circulation given that elevator capacities may be challenged. If elevator services are needed please ensure physical distancing is achieved. In buildings with elevators, occupancy in the elevators will be limited to a maximum of four people (or less, depending on elevator capacity), and will increase wait times, so plan accordingly. If you are using the elevator, wear your face mask/covering and wash your hands or use hand sanitizer with 60% alcohol upon departing the elevator.  Custodial crews will be wiping down elevator buttons periodically during the day.

Large Venues

Large events may not be scheduled, depending on the current state-mandated physical distancing requirements.

Meetings

  • Limit in-person meetings to groups no larger than the state mandated guidelines and elect for teleconference or video meetings when applicable.
  • Seating will be spaced to ensure room capacity to comply with physical distancing.

A full list of the academic protocols can be accessed at the following link:  https://www.hsutx.edu/covid-19-academic-safety-protocols

Faculty Office Hours

Avoid in-person meetings when possible and elect for teleconference or video meetings. If in-person meetings must be held, both will be required to wear face covering and to maintain physical distancing.

Classrooms

Students must follow all rules regarding classroom and lecture hall spaces.  Face masks must be worn in classrooms and lecture halls at all times.

To maintain physical distancing in classrooms, HSU has implemented several strategies, including:

  • Physical distancing will be practiced with chairs or desks spaced 6 ft apart and rooms filled to no more than 50% of capacity.
  • Sanitizing wipes will be available to students to wipe down their desktop and chairs before class begins.
  • With fixed seating, skipping rows and seats may be utilized to maintain more than 6 ft of physical distancing.
  • Signage may be placed on acceptable seating, and/or unacceptable seating will be taped or otherwise blocked off.
  • Seating charts will be utilized for all in person classes to aid in contact tracing efforts.
  • Subject to availability, the class will be moved to a room large enough to allow for physical distancing, possibly a non-traditional room without traditional desks.
  • If a sufficiently large classroom is not available, the class will be converted to an online or remote format, or hybrid format that would split the class for lectures and put no more than the maximum number of students in the classroom at any one time.

Computer Lab Protocols

  • Students are encouraged to use their own computer or tablet when possible.
  • Computer Labs will be available on a limited basis during the summer.
  • Appropriate physical distancing will be maintained whenever possible through seating assignment.
  • Students must wash their hands before and after lab use.
  • Commonly touched surfaces, including keyboards, will be cleaned and sanitized once per day.

Clinical Programs Protocols
These protocols will be provided to students in class.

Lab Protocols
Laboratory courses will have physical distancing policies structured around their unique requirements, and students should consult their laboratory professors regarding those policies.

Student Services (2nd floor)

  • All HSU community members are required to wear a mask in the common areas of Moody Student Center.
  • Staff is available by email, phone and video conferences.
  • Office visits are allowed but masks and physical distancing practices will be observed.
  • Contact:

Computer Lab (2nd floor)

  • All HSU community members are required to wear a mask in the common areas of Moody Student Center.
  • Every other computer will be available for use to ensure physical distancing.
  • Students will be asked to wipe down keyboard, mouse, and table area before use, using the wipes provided.

Food Services

  • All dining patrons will be required to wear the cloth facial mask in the dining location of your choice.
  • We ask you to wear the mask until the time you begin enjoying your meal. Upon completion of the meal, please put your mask back on.
  • Foodservice staff will wear cloth facial masks and gloves while preparing and serving our guests.
  • All patrons please wash and sanitize their hands before entering the dining location selected. The sanitizer will be available at each location for your convenience.
  • While in the dining location of your choice, 6 ft physical distancing will be required. Floor markings have been placed to provide visual aid and guidance.
  • Seating will be available at each location for your dining experience. The seating and dining rooms will require physical distancing.
  • The Dining locations will be cleaned and sanitized during and between patron usage.
  • Please do not hesitate to ask or stop one of your dining service team members for questions or directions.
  • Fall hours of operation:
    • Café Monday – Thursday 7am – 9pm; Friday 7am – 7pm; Saturday 11:30am – 1:30 pm and 5pm – 6pm; Sunday 11:30am – 2pm and 5:30pm – 7pm
    • POD Monday – Thursday 7am – midnight; Friday 11am – 5pm; Saturday 11am – 5pm; Sunday Closed
    • Gilbert’s Monday – Thursday 7:30am – 10:30pm; Friday 7:30am – 3:30pm; Saturday Closed; Sunday 5pm -10:30pm

Mail Services

  • All HSU community members are required to wear a mask in the common areas of Moody Student Center.
  • At least 6 ft physical distancing is required.
  • Post Office is open 8am – 5pm, Monday – Friday.
  • Contact email: kwilli@hsutx.edu
  • Contact phone: (325) 670-1321

HSU Bookstore

  • All HSU community members are required to wear face coverings or face masks at the Bookstore.
  • The number of customers allowed in the Bookstore at one time will be limited.
  • At least 6 ft physical distancing is required. Floor markings have been placed in the HSU Bookstore to provide a visual aid for physical distancing.
  • Fall course materials are available to order and pay online. Students can charge to their school account beginning August 1st.  Please have books shipped to you to assist with limited customers in the Bookstore.  Course material information is available at https://www.bkstr.com/hardin-simmonsstore/home
  • Campus Store summer hours of operation: 8am – 5pm, Monday – Friday
  • Contact email: hsutx@bkstr.com
  • Contact phone: (325) 677-2332

All services will be available, including:

  • citation appeals
  • submitting a report to police (civil or criminal)
  • vehicle jumpstart or unlock
  • traffic investigation/reports

HSU Police can be contacted at (325) 670-1461, 24 hours a day. There will be limited admittance to Campus Police Department interior offices.  At least 6 feet of physical distancing is required, including while in line. Offices are currently scheduled Monday – Friday noon –5 p.m.

The Academic Center for Enrichment (ACE), which offers peer-to-peer academic support (tutoring), is available for virtual tutoring sessions via Zoom only. To access instructions and/or make an appointment, open the ACE course on your Canvas dashboard. For additional information regarding academic support, contact the Advising Center at 325-670-1863 or 325-670-1480 or tutoring@hsutx.edu

Appointments will be available by telephone or Zoom.

For students who need to come to the center in Sandefer Memorial for services:

  • A mask is required inside the office suite.
  • 6 ft physical distancing practice is required.
  • Hand sanitizer is available.
  • Shared areas will be cleaned by staff after each meeting.

The Writing Center is now a part of the ACE.  We will provide only online services during the fall.  For additional information or questions, please contact us at tutoring@hsutx.edu or (325) 670-1863.

  • Counseling services will be provided using telehealth services via online counseling service.
  • Contact the Office of Counseling Services at (325) 670-1944 or counseling@hsutx.edu
  • The University’s Office of Counseling Services has moved to the Family Psychology Center in Cowden-Paxton Hall (directly behind Mabee Hall).
  • If you are in crisis or are concerned for the safety of yourself or someone else, call 911 or go to the nearest emergency room. Please do not leave a phone or email message.
  • Hand sanitizer is available at the library entrance.
  • Patrons will be asked to wear a mask while in the building.
  • At least 6 ft physical distancing is required. Please observe all signage showing what areas are available for usage.
  • Fall hours of operation: Monday – Thursday 7:30 a.m. – midnight; Friday 7:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Sunday 3 p.m. – midnight.
  • Contact phone: (325) 670-1578
  • The Help Desk provides support for university-owned technology equipment and standardized software. We also support students in accessing the HSU network.
  • Most inquiries can be handled via telephone or email.
  • If in-person meetings are needed, please call ahead to make an appointment whenever possible.
  • At least 6 ft physical distancing is required. Floor markings have been placed to provide a visual aid for physical distancing.
  • Help Desk fall hours of operation: 8 a.m. – 7 p.m. Monday – Thursday; 8 a.m. – 5 p.m. Friday; 3 p.m. – 7 p.m. Sunday
  • Contact email: helpdesk@hsutx.edu
  • Contact phone: (325) 670-1288
  • Capacity and reopening protocols will follow the tx.gov website recommendations.
  • Patrons will be required to wear a mask when entering the Fletcher Fitness Center. Masks must stay on at all times, except during strenuous cardiorespiratory training on the following cardio equipment; treadmills, ellipticals, Stairmasters, bikes and rowing machines.
  • Patrons are asked to please adhere to the signage in each zone stating maximum capacity.
  • Patrons are asked to refrain from large group gatherings (i.e. soccer and basketball)
  • Patrons must wash or sanitize their hands prior to entering the fitness center. Hand sanitizer will be available at the Welcome Desk.
  • At least 6 ft physical distancing is required.
  • In an effort to limit contact, patrons will swipe their own HSU ID Card for entry to fitness center.
  • Some equipment will be blocked to enable physical distancing.
  • Patrons will be required to wipe down their equipment after each use with the provided cleaning wipes. Fletcher Fitness Center employees will clean/disinfect equipment after each use as well.
  • Locker rooms and showers will be available. (Subject to state guidelines)
  • Fall hours of operation: Monday – Thursday 6 a.m. – midnight; Friday 6 a.m. – 9 p.m.; Saturday 9 a.m. – 9 p.m.; Sunday 1 p.m. – 9 p.m.
  • Limited total capacity; observe capacity limits for different areas of the pool.
  • Fall hours of operation: Monday – CLOSED; Tuesday –Friday 6 a.m. – 8 a.m. and noon – 6 p.m.; Saturday noon – 6 p.m.; Sunday 1 p.m. – 6 p.m.

In an effort to keep our campus community safe during this period, it is important for all students who remain on campus to abide by the following standards of conduct and expectations:

  • Health precautions are of particular importance during this time.
  • Practice cough and sneeze etiquette and hand hygiene.
  • Practice physical distancing with others.
  • Avoid unnecessary contact, such as handshaking, sharing phones, etc.
  • Avoid hanging out in large groups.
  • Wear masks when in public areas.
  • At this time, visitors or guests will not be permitted in apartments.

If you have any questions, please feel free to contact your Residence Director or the Residence Life Office at (325) 670-1690 or email francis.edwards@hsutx.edu.

Reducing the risk of exposure to COVID-19 by cleaning and disinfection is a critical aspect of reopening our campus.

Out of an abundance of caution, our ABM team is engaged in additional levels of cleaning of common spaces and high-touch areas to support the well-being of our campus community and to mitigate the potential risk of exposure to COVID-19.  The university’s procedures call for timely action to properly sanitize spaces used by someone who has become subject to quarantine or isolation.

While always expected, it is particularly important during this period for students to maintain a clean environment.  All students are required to keep desk and work surfaces empty of paper or other clutter to enable thorough cleaning.

Students should regularly wipe down their personal areas and frequently touched objects, such as workstations/desks, keyboards, and telephones.

It is particularly important during this period for students who reside on campus to maintain a clean residence.  CDC guidelines regarding household cleaning can be found at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/cleaning-disinfection.html.

Additional cleaning protocols may be necessary to address heightened risks, such as following a confirmed COVID-19 case.  The university will respond quickly to ensure spaces used by someone who has become subject to quarantine or isolation are properly sanitized.

If you see an area of the campus that requires additional cleaning, please submit a School Dude work order.

Some members of our community may be more vulnerable to complications of COVID-19 that increase the risk of infection or the severity of symptoms.

Students who may be high-risk for COVID-19 and wish to request associated medical accommodations are encouraged to contact the Student Disability Services office at disabilityservices@hsutx.edu or (325) 670-5842.

Given the evolving nature of the COVID-19 pandemic and the drastic alteration of patterns of work, transportation, family support, child-care, travel and other fundamental modes of life, our students, faculty and staff are expected to model flexibility and foster a community of wellness and awareness to the maximum extent possible.  Flexibility includes readiness to immediately adapt to changing circumstances by implementing more restrictions and/or returning quickly to shelter-in-place.

To accommodate faculty, staff or other students who are at high-risk:

  • You may be asked to wear a face mask in areas not normally required.
  • You may be asked to allow others to use elevators alone.

When you are requested to do so, please comply with these safety measures without asking further questions, so that the dignity and medical confidentially of the high-risk members of our campus community can be respected.

Residential students are encouraged to stay on campus as much as possible.  If you have to leave campus, practice physical distancing and other health precautions.  For example, if you have to go to the store, consider going at non-peak times.

And remember – your conduct, whether on or off campus, must comply with the HSU Student Code of Conduct, as outlined in the HSU Student Handbook, course catalogs and other publications.  Please represent HSU well when you are out and about in our local community.  Obey the rules of local merchants such as restaurants and grocery stores.  Avoid crowds and follow the protocols for all Texas citizens established in the Governor’s Open Texas Report.4

All students are required to report immediately if:

  • You test positive for COVID-19.
  • You develop symptoms consistent with COVID-19.
  • You have known close contact with a person who is lab confirmed to have COVID-19.

You must report by DIRECTLY contacting Stacey Martin, Vice President for Student Life, at covid.students@hsutx.edu or Holly Edwards, Associate Dean of Students, at covid.students@hsutx.edu or (325) 670-1691.

Contacting other staff or faculty DOES NOT fulfil your requirement to immediately report directly to Stacey Martin or Holly Edwards.

Your report will be handled confidentially by only those university officials who have a need to know.

Quarantine is used to keep someone who is at higher risk of having been exposed to COVID-19 away from others.  Quarantine helps limit further spread of COVID-19. (source: CDC)

Quarantine means staying in a specific designated location (i.e., campus housing or a commuter student’s own home) and staying separated from others.  People in quarantine limit movement outside of their home or current residence.  They monitor their health status for the development of symptoms.  Typically, a COVID-19-related quarantine lasts for a 14-day period.

Quarantine is used for people who are not sick and is similar to, but not the same as, isolation, which is used when a person is sick.

Who should quarantine?   You may be instructed by a healthcare provider, a local health official, or the university to self-quarantine because of close contact with someone who has lab-confirmed COVID-19.

Steps for Self-Quarantine:

  1. If you have had close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 or who is being tested after a suspected exposure to COVID-19, you are required to self-quarantine and to report immediately and directly to Stacey Martin, Vice President for Student Life, at students@hsutx.edu or Holly Edwards, Associate Dean of Students, at covid.students@hsutx.edu or (325) 670-1691. For students who reside in campus housing, Stacey Martin or Holly Edwards will discuss your options for quarantining in campus housing.
  2. You will be responsible for contacting your faculty or staff directly. Most classes may provide a remote learning format during your quarantine period.
  3. Stay in your self-quarantine area until 14 days after the date of your last known exposure and limit movement outside of your self-quarantine area.
  4. Follow the rules while you’re lying low. You can still connect with friends and family via computer and phone. However, it’s important you do not break quarantine until after 14 days is over.
  5. Do not leave your quarantine location for any non-essential reason. For on-campus quarantine, specific information will be provided to you regarding where you may and may not go outside your campus living quarters.
  6. Do not use public transportation or go to shopping centers.
  7. Maintain physical distance (at least 6 ft) from others at all times.
  8. Avoid contact with people at higher risk for severe illness.
  9. Self-monitor for symptoms. Check temperature twice a day.  Watch for fever above 100.4˚F, cough, or shortness of breath.  Follow CDC guidance if symptoms develop and report the onset of symptoms immediately to covid.students@hsutx.edu or (325) 670-1691.

If you quarantine in campus housing, additional rules will apply.   

  • Complete the Daily Student Data form. A link will be sent to you to access the form.
  • HSU may require that you use certain entrances/exits at your residence.
  • While it is expected that you will limit your movement outside your residence during self-quarantine, you may be required to stay completely away from certain areas of the campus where physical distancing may be more difficult to maintain. For example, you may not go to the Fletcher Fitness Center, Richardson Library, Moody Student Center, or other campus buildings.
  • Do not have friends or family with you in your quarantine room or apartment, unless they have been approved by your healthcare provider and HSU.
  • Do wear a face mask if you need to use a shared bathroom, go to a healthcare appointment, etc.

How HSU will assist you during self-quarantine in campus housing:

HSU has in place procedures to safely and appropriately assist students residing on campus who are self-quarantining, while simultaneously safeguarding the health and well-being of the broader university community.  In addition to the self-quarantine rules outlined above, the following apply to students who are quarantined in campus housing:

  • You must stay in separate campus quarters with separate bathroom facilities.
  • Food and other essential supplies will be delivered to the person’s campus housing if needed.
  • Garbage should be bagged and left outside by the door of the quarters for routine pick up. Special handling is not required.

Regardless of where you quarantine, returning to face-to-face classes and other campus activities after quarantine is strictly prohibited until you have been provided written permission to do so from Holly Edwards or her designee.

For more information about quarantine or isolation, see these resources: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/social-distancing.html

Isolation is used to separate sick people from healthy people (source: CDC).

Who should isolate?

Any student who:

  • Develops fever, cough, or other symptoms listed in this document.
  • Tests positive for COVID-19.

Steps for Isolation

Reporting:  Students who meet the criteria for isolation must immediately

  • Self-isolate
  • Contact Stacey Martin, Vice President for Student Life, at students@hsutx.edu or Holly Edwards, Associate Dean of Students, at covid.students@hsutx.edu or (325) 670-1691.
  • You will be responsible for contacting your faculty or staff directly. Most classes can be converted to an online format during your quarantine period.
  • You may not go to the Fletcher Fitness Center, Richardson Library, Moody Student Center, or other campus buildings.
  • You must not use public transportation or go to stores or shopping centers.
  • You may not have friends or family with you in your isolation room or apartment, unless they have been approved by your health care provider and the University.

The university may require you to comply with other rules during isolation. Hearing that you are “being isolated” or asked to “self-isolate” may feel kind of scary, but remember: the goal of isolation is to give you the space and time to recover, while also protecting others from exposure to illness. However, you can still connect with friends and family via social media and phone. Regardless of where you isolate, returning to face-to-face classes and other campus activities after quarantine is strictly prohibited until you have been provided written permission to do so from Holly Edwards or her designee.

 

Campus Disclosure:  HSU pledges that we will disclose any known COVID-19 case to the campus community while respecting the confidentiality of the individual student.  Local healthcare officials will conduct any necessary contact tracing they deem necessary.  HSU will facilitate contact tracing as requested by local health authorities.

Contact Tracing:  If you test positive for COVID-19, when you provide notice of the diagnosis to the university, please provide a list of any members of the HSU community that you recall being in close contact with during the 48 hours preceding the onset of your symptoms.

Location of Isolation:  Every student is required to have a plan for off-campus isolation (including private transportation), should it become necessary.  If undergoing isolation at your permanent residence is not possible due to extraordinary circumstances, the university may agree to provide appropriate isolation accommodations and other assistance listed above, if your symptoms are less severe and you can provide self-care during the isolation period.

Common feelings during quarantine or isolation: Everyone reacts differently to stressful situations such as an infectious disease outbreak that require changes in location or behavior. When you’re out of circulation, you may experience a range of feelings, including:

  • Anxiety, worry, or fear related to your health status or that of others
  • Feeling special; like you’re having an adventure
  • Anger or resentment of the inconvenience
  • Worry about not having your things with you or not doing your usual routine
  • Uncertainty or concern about how long you will need to remain in this situation
  • Excitement to have some alone time to rest and catch up on reading
  • Loneliness or feeling cut off
  • Boredom and frustration
  • Sadness or depression

Resources

For more information about quarantine or isolation, see these resources: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/social-distancing.html