UNC announces plans for a safe return to campus

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On Tuesday, President Andy Feinstein announced plans for a safe return to campus for the University of Northern Colorado’s fall semester beginning on Aug. 24. Photo courtesy of https://www.unco.edu/humanities-social-sciences/images/unc-brick-sign.jpg.

On Tuesday, President Andy Feinstein announced plans for a safe return to campus for the University of Northern Colorado’s fall semester beginning on Aug. 24.

According to the email sent out to campus, UNC’s Re-Entry Task Force, comprised of students, staff and faculty, are meeting weekly to plan for updates regarding student, academic, and campus operations. Updates from the Re-Entry Task Force include making decisions on course delivery, creating limited capacities in classrooms, determining classroom configurations and foot traffic flow in buildings, and planning for in-person events and online experiences.

The Re-Entry Task Force is working on deciding which courses will be delivered in-person, online or in a hybrid format. Information about how each course will be delivered will be shared with the UNC campus by June 30. A new schedule for the fall semester will also be finalized by early July, allowing students to register or amend their schedules based on these changes.

“While the classroom experience may have to look a little different this year as we adapt to COVID-19, our approach will always reflect UNC’s commitment to providing an exceptional academic and co-curricular experience,” Feinstein said. “The services we provide and the centers available to our campus community – cultural, student support, counseling, advising, health and wellness – will remain a vital component as we enter the fall semester. Our planning and preparation take into consideration how to better support you, our campus community, and how we can create flexible ways to engage with each other.”

According to Feinstein’s email, UNC also recently conducted an inventory of all instructional spaces on campus to help with decisions on how, where, and with what capacity limitations courses will be taught in order to meet social distancing measures. UNC is also working on creating signage, floor decals and adding clear barriers at points of service areas to limit traffic flow and meet safety measures.

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UNC’s on-campus housing will also be providing room occupancy options by June 30.

“Every decision being made is informed through active coordination with state and local public health officials as well as guidance from the CDC,” Feinstein said. “We are committed to protecting the health and safety of students, staff and faculty when we come back together this fall.”

To help protect the health and safety of students, the UNC Student Health Center is also providing both COVID-19 viral tests and antibody tests for members of the UNC community. Students who have questions or want to schedule a time for testing can contact the Student Health Center at (970) 351-2412.

According to Feinstein, UNC is also planning for different scenarios that could impact campus in the coming months. These scenarios include a second wave of COVID-19, a positive case on campus or additional stay-at-home orders.

“I remain optimistic that we will offer in-person instruction for the entire academic year, but we must also prepare to adjust if required and maintain a level of flexibility should changes emerge after the fall semester begins,” Feinstein said.

Virtual town hall meetings for students to ask questions and receive information about the fall semester are being planned for July. Dates, times, and details will be sent to students by the end of next week.

UNC has also sent out a confidential survey to students about how to better assist students in regard to academic support, student services, and health, safety and wellness resources.

For more information, students can visit UNC’s Coronavirus website.

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