Campus Renewal Plan
Campus life will be different this fall. We will all need to be fully prepared for changes in daily practices to keep us healthy and our campus safe. Even in normal conditions, our community of caring rests upon a foundation of trust that exists between you and this community – a trust that implicitly conveys that you value not only your own health and safety, but also the health and safety of your classmates and colleagues. In a time of global pandemic, this social contract is more critical now than ever – it is not only fellow members of The W community, but also their local communities, their friends, and their families who are counting on each and every one us to Be WISE (Willing to Interact in a Safe Environment).
Letter from the president
Dear W Family,
Many thanks to the Campus Renewal Task Force who have worked tirelessly to develop our plan for moving forward. While the W is known for our academic reputation and our beautiful campus - it is our people that make our university so special. This plan has been carefully and thoughtfully developed with the health and safety of our people in mind.
As we move forward, our plans will adjust to reflect the available public health data, recommendations, and guidance available to us. We are reliant upon every individual member of our community to take responsibility for their personal health and to recognize the impact that their behavior may have on others. Together we will study for light to bless with light. Thank you for your consideration of others and for your patience as we continue to adapt to our changing world. Take care and stay healthy!
Nora R. Miller
About the Plan
Mississippi University for Women formed the Campus Renewal Task Force to begin planning for the transition of operations in the summer in preparation to resume traditional operations in the fall. To reach this goal, a number of recommendations have been made by the Campus Renewal Task Force and corresponding working groups for implementation by the University.
Members of the Campus Renewal Task Force wish to thank all those who participated in the process. The campus community has once again given generously of its time and insight in providing feedback, thoughtful assessments, and ideas for the Task Force’s consideration. Without this input, this plan would not have been possible.
Task Force Continuation
The Campus Renewal Task Force will continue to meet to finalize remaining protocols and procedures, draft new protocols and procedures when appropriate, receive the latest information from the working groups, and modify the campus renewal plan as necessary. The Task Force and other campus entities will continue to consult public health professionals and assess operational guidance provided from state and federal authorities. To ensure the health and safety of our campus community, the plan will evolve in light of new guidance and to meet changing circumstances.
To de-densify the process, move-in for on-campus housing will take place over an extended period of time beginning on Wednesday, August 12, 2020 and ending on Sunday, August 16, 2020.
Classes will begin on Monday, August 17 so that instruction and final examinations can end before the Thanksgiving holiday. To ensure enough classroom contact time and to limit the campus community dispersing and returning to the campus, there will be no Fall Break.
Classes will be offered in-person, online (mainly asynchronous, but some synchronous), and in hybrid formats, to allow flexibility for remote learning when needed, including the possibility of a fully online semester should it be necessary.
A less densely populated campus will allow The W to enhance our physical distancing measures, which will only serve to strengthen our health, safety, and general well-being measures described in the campus renewal plan. Therefore, the course schedule has and will continue to lean more heavily toward online and remote learning opportunities for the fall 2020 semester with a goal to have most, and hopefully all, of the changes to the schedule finalized soon.
Faculty office hours, advising and any out-of-class meetings are to be conducted virtually when physical distancing cannot be achieved.
All faculty, staff, students, and visitors are required to wear face coverings unless walking alone in an outdoor space or working alone in a personal office space.
Regular hand-washing and sanitizer use will be encouraged and additional hand-sanitizing stations will be added at building entrances.
All campus buildings will receive increased cleaning and disinfection, including high-touch surfaces, such as elevator buttons, tables, hard-backed chairs, doorknobs, push bars, light switches, handles, handrails, desks, toilets, urinals, sinks, soap and paper dispensers, etc.
COVID-19 prevention supplies, such as soap, alcohol-based hand sanitizers, tissues, and trash baskets, will also be provided in common areas, with all actively encouraged to utilize.
Procedures are being finalized that limit spread and promote recovery through strong isolation and quarantine protocols.
A case manager will work within the Campus Health Center to manage and coordinate contact tracing in collaboration with the Mississippi Department of Health.
A COVID-19 Daily Symptom Checker will be developed and made available to help members of the campus community make appropriate decisions concerning their medical care and whether they should be on campus. Responses will be completely anonymous with no collection of information related to the individual or their location. It is up to each individual to accurately identify/monitor their health status and be responsible for staying off campus if sick.
All students, faculty, and staff will complete an online health and safety training module before the fall semester.
Specific building entrances/exits should be designated for inbound or outbound traffic to facilitate a common flow of people moving in/out of buildings.
Traffic will be guided through buildings using techniques such as one-way directional signage, designated up/down stairways, and designated entry/exit doors. Signage will discourage individuals from using elevators; unless necessary.
All members of The W community will be encouraged to have a flu shot to mitigate the impact that increases in both COVID-19 and influenza might have on local community health resources.
Employees of MUW will be informed of their rights under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) as well as benefits that support both their mental and physical well-being.
Communication will ensure campus is abreast of the latest developments and will be consistent across a variety of delivery methods.
Campus gatherings, athletic contests, and events will follow federal, state, and local recommendations and guidelines at the time of each event. Most events on The W’s cultural calendar will be moved to a virtual environment.
The W has hired an additional counselor and remains committed to continuing support for student mental health through counseling and related services, including both face-to-face and online counseling.
Compliance with public health measures will be mandatory. To prevent widespread infections and possible campus closure, all members of The W community must follow and take these measures seriously.