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Protecting Our Campus Community

Daily Health Survey Protocol

All students and seminarians who will be on campus this fall must complete the Health Survey each day before engaging in any activities on campus. You must be free of any symptoms potentially related to COVID-19 to be eligible to engage in any activities. The Daily Health Survey is a means for all members of the Mount Community to pause and assess whether they have any of the symptoms associated with COVID-19 or have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 within the last 14 days. See our COVID-19 Procedures for what to do if you feel you have symptoms.

Safety Policies and Protocols

Face Coverings

Face coverings must be worn by all employees, students, visitors/guests, and contractors/vendors on all University campuses (Emmitsburg, Frederick, Seminary, Grotto) when in the presence of others and when indoors. Face coverings are not required while alone in private offices, in residence hall rooms (unless visitors are present) or outdoors when not in the presence of others. Appropriate use of face coverings is critical in minimizing risks to others near you.

Students are expected to bring their own face coverings. However, each student will receive a Personal COVID Kit that includes a cloth face mask that needs to be washed after each use; a thermometer; and a 2 oz. hand sanitizer bottle. A limited number of disposable masks will be provided by the Mount, if needed. A disposable mask may only be worn for one day and then must be placed in the trash.

Cloth face coverings must only be worn for one day at a time and must be properly laundered before use again. Having a week’s supply of cloth face coverings can help reduce the need for daily laundering. See details regarding mask use and care below.

Type and Intended Use of Face Coverings/Masks

Cloth Face Covering

  • Description: Home-made or commercially manufactured face coverings that are washable and help contain wearer’s respiratory emissions.
  • Intended Use: Required for campus community use in non-healthcare settings (office spaces, general research/work settings, shops, community areas where 6’ social distancing cannot be consistently maintained.) Must be replaced daily. While likely necessary for ingress and egress, they are not required when working alone in an office.

Disposable Mask

  • Description: Commercially manufactured masks that help contain wearer’s respiratory emissions.
  • Intended Use: Required for campus community use in non-healthcare settings (office spaces, general research/work settings, shops, community areas where 6’ social distancing cannot be consistently maintained.) Must be replaced daily. While likely necessary for ingress and egress, they are not required when working alone in an office.

Medical-Grade Surgical Mask

  • Description: FDA-approved masks to protect the wearer from large droplets and splashes; helps contain wearer’s respiratory emissions.
  • Intended Use: These masks are reserved for healthcare workers and other approved areas with task specific hazards.

N95 Respirator

  • Description: Provide effective respiratory protection from airborne particles and aerosols; helps contain wearer’s respiratory emissions.
  • Intended Use: These masks are reserved for healthcare workers and other approved areas with task specific hazards.

Putting on the face covering/disposable mask:

  • Wash hands or use hand sanitizer prior to handling the face covering/disposable mask.
  • Ensure the face-covering/disposable mask fits over the nose and under the chin.
  • Situate the face-covering/disposable mask properly with nose wire snug against the nose (where applicable).
  • Tie straps behind the head and neck or loop around the ears.
  • Throughout the process: Avoid touching the front of the face covering/disposable mask.

Taking off the face covering/disposable mask:

  • Wash hands or use hand sanitizer prior to removing the face covering/disposable mask.
  • Do not touch your eyes, nose or mouth when removing the face covering/disposable mask.
  • When taking off the face covering/disposable mask, loop your finger into the strap and pull the strap away from the ear, or untie the straps.
  • Wash hands immediately after removing.

Care, storage and laundering:

  • Keep face coverings/disposable mask stored in a paper bag when not in use.
  • Cloth face coverings may not be used more than one day at a time and must be washed after use. Cloth face coverings should be properly laundered with regular clothing detergent before first use and after each day of use. Cloth face coverings should be replaced immediately if soiled, damaged (e.g. ripped, punctured) or visibly contaminated.
  • Disposable masks must not be used for more than one day and should be placed in the trash at the end of the day or if it becomes soiled, damaged (e.g., stretched ear loops, torn or punctured material) or visibly contaminated.

Social Distancing

Keeping space between you and others is one of the best tools to avoid being exposed to the COVID-19 virus and slowing its spread. Since people can spread the virus before they know they are sick, it is important to stay away from others when possible, even if you have no symptoms.

  • Stay at least 6 feet (about 2 arms’ length) from other people at all times.
  • Do not gather in groups.
  • Stay out of crowded places and avoid mass gatherings.

Handwashing

Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, sneezing or touching your face. If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces on your hands and rub them together until they feel dry. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth, and wash your hands after touching your face. Hand sanitizer dispensers are located throughout all buildings on campus.

Gloves

High-risk students should use gloves as part of personal protective equipment (PPE), but according to the CDC, gloves are not necessary for general use and do not replace good hand hygiene. Washing your hands often is considered the best practice for common everyday tasks.

Goggles/Face Shields

You do not need to wear goggles or face shields as part of general activity on campus. A face covering or mask is sufficient. Good hand hygiene and avoiding touching your face are generally sufficient for non-healthcare environments.

Personal Disinfection

While custodial crews clean restrooms and common areas based on CDC guidelines, additional care should be taken to wipe down commonly used surfaces such as residence hall desks, light switches and doorknobs.

Coughing/Sneezing Hygiene

If you are in a private setting and do not have on your cloth face covering, remember to always cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow. Then throw used tissues in the trash. Immediately wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, clean your hands with a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.

Using Restrooms

Please obey posted occupancy limits. Wash your hands thoroughly afterward to reduce the potential transmission of the virus.

Using Elevators

No more than one person may enter an elevator at a time, so please use the stairs whenever possible. We strongly recommend only those who need to use the elevator should use one. All others should use the stairs. If you are using the elevator, wear your mask or face covering and avoid touching the elevator buttons with your exposed hand/fingers by using a pen/pencil to push elevator buttons, if possible. Wash your hands or use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol upon departing the elevator.

Meals

Before and after eating, you should wash your hands thoroughly to reduce the potential transmission of the virus. While dining on campus, you should wear your mask or face covering until you are ready to eat and then replace it afterward. Campus food service providers, will allow at least 6 feet of distance between each customer, including lines and seating arrangements.

Meetings/Gatherings

Convening in groups increases the risk of viral transmission. Where feasible, meetings should be held in whole or part using the extensive range of available collaboration tools (e.g., Zoom, WebEx, Microsoft Teams, telephone, etc.).

Residential Living

Students are encouraged to limit visits to other residence halls or university housing outside of their own hall.

Only residential students and Mount staff are authorized to enter University housing; non-Mount guests and non-residential students are not allowed. Students may not entertain guests on campus. Students may meet with family members in public spaces on campus.

Classroom Instruction

All classrooms will have reduced capacity in order to comply with our social distancing protocols. Instructors and students will generally be no closer than 6 feet apart and will wear face coverings at all times. In many cases, students in classes will be split into two groups and alternate between attending class face-to-face and remotely. Other safety policies and protocols specific to curricular (or co-curricular) activities will be provided by the appropriate program director or sponsor.

Student Travel

During the coronavirus outbreak students are discouraged from leaving campus unless necessary because they run the risk of becoming infected with the virus and bringing it back to campus. Students should limit their travel to low-risk destinations and avoid high-risk destinations:

  • Low-risk destinations are ones that follow CDC and state guidelines for face coverings, physical distancing and occupancy limits. Examples include:
    • Most retail businesses.
    • Outdoor activities with low densities of people such as hiking, biking, canoeing and golfing.
    • Family homes if the household is following state guidelines.
    • Religious services and other gatherings where physical distancing and face coverings are used.
  • High-risk destinations include:
    • Events with high densities or numbers of people (rallies, sporting events, concerts).
    • Large gatherings or crowds where face coverings and social distancing are not used.
    • Places where the use of face coverings and social distancing is unknown.

Residential students and employees who travel off campus risk exposure to COVID-19 in areas where disease incidence is high or preventive measures are lax. Therefore, good judgment must be exercised when traveling to minimize the risk of exposure. The President of the University may at times restrict student travel off-campus when deemed necessary to contain or prevent an outbreak of COVID-19.

University-Sponsored Student Travel

Travel off campus for athletic competitions, athletic training, class field trips, community service projects, mission trips and others similar events is allowed when the trip is an essential element of the student experience and when the risks of disease transmission are well defined. Program director, sponsor or coach will provide the appropriate campus approval and arrangements for the travel. Accommodations must be made for students who do not wish to travel due to health concerns related to COVID-19.

Destinations where the COVID-19 risks are unknown or high (e.g., face coverings and physical distancing guidelines are not followed) should be avoided. CDC travel guidelines will be followed as much as possible.

The President of the University may at times restrict student travel off-campus when deemed necessary to contain or prevent an outbreak of COVID-19.

Campus Visitors (Invited Guests, Contractors and Vendors)

With the exception of the National Shrine Grotto, which is open to the public, only invited guests and those on official university business are permitted on campus. These include (and are not limited to): Prospective students and families, guest speakers, current student family members, admissions event attendees, athletics guests (visiting teams), ARCC members, job applicants, event attendees, wedding parties, conference & special program guests, vendors, contractors and delivery persons. Friends of employees and students are not allowed.

All campus visitors must stop at Public Safety to complete a safety questionnaire and submit to a temperature check upon arrival at campus. Visitors will be turned away if they self-report COVID-19 symptoms, have tested positive for COVID-19 within the last 14 days, or have been in close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19 within the last 14 days.