Updated: Oct. 21, 2020 | 11:30 a.m.
On June 24, 2020, the ONU Board of Trustees endorsed the University’s safety plan for resuming in-person education for fall semester 2020. The plan was developed by incorporating the informed efforts of several work groups and special teams, leadership reviews undertaken over several weeks, and helpful suggestions during a campus comment period. The plan will continue to be reviewed and fine-tuned throughout the summer to ensure continued compliance with guidance from federal and state governments and the local health department. READ THE FULL SAFETY PLAN HERE.
Ohio Northern has created a handout to help students, parents, faculty and staff with many important details found in the COVID-19 Return-to-Campus Implementation Plan. DOWNLOAD THE IMPLEMENTATION PLAN HERE.
NOTE: Some COVID-19 archival resources also are available.
TOGETHER AS A POLAR BEAR FAMILY
Let’s each do our part to protect our loved ones and our community.
The health, safety and well-being of every member of the Ohio Northern University community is our top priority. COVID-19 remains a threat in our society, however, ONU’s rural location, small size, and resident health experts give us unique advantages to manage the risks to our community. To safely resume classes on campus, we are implementing a comprehensive plan of new safeguards and procedures. We recognize that no university, nor any other organization, can guarantee an environment free of COVID-19, and we expect everyone associated with the University to understand that there is a risk of contracting the virus here or anywhere.
HERE’S WHAT YOU NEED TO DO
Requirements for Faculty, Staff & Students (FS&S)
COMPLETE MANDATORY COVID-19 HEALTH AND SAFETY TRAINING
FS&S must complete the mandatory online COVID-19 Training. As part of the COVID Training for students, they signed the Protect ONU Polar Pledge.
TAKE A DAILY TEMPERATURE READING
Self monitor your temperature every day – it’s mandatory. If you get a reading of 100.4 or above, don’t come to class or work, check for other symptoms, and contact the ONU Health Center. Keep a log.
PRACTICE HAND HYGIENE
Frequently wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds or longer and frequently use the hand sanitizer readily accessible in all ONU facilities. Note that hand sanitizer must be at least 60 percent alcohol.
KEEP YOUR DISTANCE
Because COVID-19 mainly spreads via respiratory droplets by people who are in close contact with each other, maintain at least 6 feet of physical distance – which is approximately 2 arms’ length – from others when feasible both indoors and outdoors. Avoid gatherings that exceed state guidelines and stay out of crowded places.
WEAR FACE COVERINGS
All FS&S and campus visitors MUST wear face coverings in campus buildings and residence halls, except in the privacy of their workspaces or residence hall rooms. Wear a face covering in outdoor settings where safe social distancing is not possible. Roommates are considered a family unit, so you do not need to wear a face mask in your dorm room or apartment. Masks also are not required when it impairs respiratory function (eating, drinking, playing sports, playing a musical instrument, etc.), or if you have a federally recognized disability or accommodation. Remember to wash your mask daily.
SANITIZE SPACES BEFORE AND AFTER USE
FS&S are responsible for cleaning campus spaces, including offices, reception areas and conference rooms, before and after each use. Cleaning supplies will be available and cleaning directions posted in each shared public space. You must clean/disinfect any surfaces and equipment that you have touched or used.
FOLLOW MEETING PROTOCOLS
When at all feasible, avoid in-person meetings and events and utilize a virtual platform such as Zoom or Google Meet. However, if you must have a meeting/event of more than 10 people, it has to be approved through the McIntosh Center Information Desk. Requests should be submitted at least one week in advance via the Event Planning Form. Meetings/events MUST adhere to established guidelines such as avoiding handouts, wearing face coverings and maintaining 6 feet of distance between participants. A student worker on Klondike’s Team (KT) will be assigned to student organization meetings and events to monitor and ensure safety guidelines are being followed.
If you have any questions or concerns about ONU’s COVID-19 requirements, contact:
- Dr. Kelly Shields, associate dean, College of Pharmacy, at email@example.com;
- Business Services, firstname.lastname@example.org, 419-772-2057;
- Human Resources, email@example.com, 419-772-2013
If you’ve been in contact with someone with COVID-19 or you are experiencing any symptoms, contact the ONU Health Center
immediately at 419-772-2086 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
HERE’S WHAT ONU IS DOING
Summary of Campus Safeguards during the Coronavirus Pandemic*
Classes began on Aug. 10 so that fall semester can wrap up on Nov. 20 for the holiday season.
ONU provided students with a Polar Pack that includes a fabric face covering, thermometer, hand sanitizer and a first aid kit.
LIVING AND DINING SPACES
Students are encouraged to limit the number of visitors and are required not to exceed the number of people in any residence hall room, lounge, apartment room or common area that can be properly distanced (6 feet) from one another. Common areas and restrooms in all residence halls will be cleaned 3x a day. No overnight guests are allowed in residence halls or apartments. Campus dining will offer variety, quality and value while following Sodexo standards for health and safety. Self-serve options will be eliminated and serve-and-go options will continue. Dining centers will offer limited seating capacity.
MULTIPLE DELIVERY METHODS
Classes will be delivered using multiple methods in order to maximize in-person instruction. However, hybrid instruction and remote learning technology may be implemented to ensure social distancing and where it is necessary to accommodate individual student or faculty needs.
ACTIVITY SAFETY PLANS
Performing arts, athletic programs, clinicals, labs, student organizations etc., will continue in a modified form with strict adherence to established safety plans and requirements for each area.
VIRUS TESTING AND CONTROL PROCEDURES
We will conduct regular screenings on a sample population of FS&S as well as test anyone who has come in contact with an infected person. In addition, we have comprehensive procedures in place for contract tracing, quarantine and isolation, in the event of a positive test. Isolation housing and services will be provided for those individuals unable to leave campus.
EXTENSIVE CLEANING AND DISINFECTING
New cleaning protocols and schedules are being followed across campus. Frequently touched surfaces (doorknobs, handrails, tables, etc.) are cleaned 2x a day; McIntosh Center, residence hall restrooms and common areas, athletic facilities, etc. are cleaned 3x a day. Hand sanitizer is readily available in high-contact areas in all buildings. Shared objects (lab and fitness equipment, computer labs, copy machines, etc.) should be cleaned in between each use and surface cleaner is readily available.
SOCIAL DISTANCING & BUILDING CAPACITY
Classroom seating is placed at 6-feet apart and academic building capacity is limited to 50 percent. Small spaces where social distancing is not possible are closed. In addition, gatherings outside the classroom must adhere to the people limit established by the Ohio Department of Health and follow ONU’s established guidelines.
Face coverings will be mandatory for all FS&S and campus visitors while in the presence of others both indoors and outdoors.
LIMITED GUESTS AND TRAVEL
Non-essential visitors, volunteers and activities on campus will be limited. University-sponsored travel both domestically and internationally will be avoided. Athletic teams must follow the Athletics Safety Plan when traveling. Testing and/or isolation may be required for any FS&S who return from University-sponsored and personal travel.