Coronavirus FAQ

Updated July 29, 2020

The University is monitoring and responding to the rapidly evolving coronavirus (COVID-19) situation, following the guidance of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other agencies. We would like to keep you up-to-date on our latest policies and prevention measures with this FAQ. 

UNIVERSITY-WIDE MEASURES

What is the University doing to take general precautions?

The University continues to follow the latest guidelines offered by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the San Bernardino County Department of Public Health and Marin County Health and Human Services Office regarding the novel coronavirus and the disease it causes, COVID-19:

  • The University has created a Coronavirus Response Team:
        o Donna Eddleman, University Dean of Student Affairs (chair)
        o Krystle Armbruster, Director of Health Services
        o Ken Grcich, Senior Associate Dean of Student Affairs
        o Jeremy Hammond, Director of Human Resources
        o Stephanie Johnson, Director of Media Relations
        o Andrea Muilenburg, Study Away Office Director
        o Mika Ono, Interim Chief Communications Officer
        o Michelle Rogers, Vice President for Administration
        o Jeff Talbott, Chief of Public Safety
        o Teresa Webster, Environmental Health and Safety Manager
        o Steve Wuhs, Assistant Provost for Internationalization
  • The University and its Coronavirus Response Team are working with specific liaisons at the County level, as well as following CDC and state guidance to provide up-to-date information and recommendations as they are released.
  • The University has increased efforts to disinfect surfaces, such as tables, computers, door handles, and restrooms, and provided cleaning guidelines to Custodial Services staff. The distribution and placement of hand sanitizers have been expanded and proper hand washing signs have been posted in all restrooms.
  • All events have been canceled. 

What can I do to prevent getting the virus?

For prevention, the CDC advises everyone to:

  • Clean your hands often. This includes washing your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol; cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact, especially with people who are sick. Stay at home as much as possible. Put distance—at least six feet—between yourself and other people, since some people without symptoms may be able to spread virus.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover when around others. You could spread COVID-19 to others even if you do not feel sick. Everyone should wear a cloth face cover when they have to go out in public, for example to the grocery store or to pick up other necessities (although cloth face coverings should not be placed on young children under age 2, anyone who has trouble breathing, or is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance). Continue to keep about 6 feet between yourself and others; the cloth face cover is not a substitute for social distancing.
  • Cover coughs and sneezes. 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. Throw used tissues in the trash, and then wash your hands.
  • Clean and disinfect. Frequently touched surfaces requiring daily cleaning include tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks. If surfaces are dirty, clean them using detergent or soap and water prior to disinfection.

While a flu shot will not prevent coronavirus, it will offer protection from the flu and help lessen the public health burden of infectious disease.

What should I do if I believe I am exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19?

It is important you reach out to a health care provider, the Student Health Center, your family physician, or a local urgent care, and advise them of your concern before seeking treatment. Notice to the provider allows them to be prepared for your arrival, thus minimizing exposure of others, should your symptoms warrant such preventative planning.  Simply showing up at a care facility seeking medical help for COVID-19 symptoms is strongly discouraged.

Where can I find out more information about this virus and the disease it causes?

For more information on the novel coronavirus and the disease it causes, COVID-19, see the FAQ from the CDC.

Where can I find details about CARES Act funding for students?

Please see information on the Distribution of CARES Act Funding to Students web page.

ACADEMICS (UNIVERSITY-WIDE)

Will the University of Redlands campuses reopen by the fall?

Given the state of the pandemic in California at this time, the University of Redlands must begin the next semester/session with remote teaching and learning. We will continue offering classes remotely until state and county guidance indicates we can pivot and bring students back to our campuses, at which point we will begin the process of reintroducing in-person and hybrid experiences with all necessary safety protocols.

How are classes being adapted?

Classes are currently in a remote format. No matter the modality in which they are teaching—online, in-person, or hybrid—U of R professors across the University are working hard to offer an engaging and personalized education. Faculty members remain committed to developing meaningful connections within and outside of classes.

Throughout the summer, faculty have researched and participated in workshops on the best practices for online teaching and learning. Also, the University has had the opportunity to invest in enhanced technology to help ensure students have a high-quality experience. This includes upgrading on-campus classrooms that faculty can use to provide instruction using fast, stable internet connections, as well as ensuring technology assistants are available to help if connection or software difficulties arise. 

 

How can faculty receive support for virtual or hybrid instruction?

The U of R Information Technology Services (ITS) instructional technology team is making additional time available to help faculty members to meet the needs of the current situation. In particular, the team can help:  

  • Set up and add course content to Moodle, based on learning objectives.
  • Facilitate student interaction through discussion forums and related online tools.
  • Hold live class sessions or office hours using Webex or Teams.
  • Create online assignments and assessments. 

The team is available to faculty for virtual consultation and phone support. Faculty can:

Is the Armacost Library open?

Curbside pickup is now available from Armacost Library. University of Redlands faculty, staff, and students can use the Request feature in Primo to choose items to checkout for curbside pickup. You must be signed-in with your University of Redlands credentials to see the Request option. 

Curbside pickup is now available on Mondays and Thursdays, noon–5 p.m. A library staff member will email when your items have been picked from the shelf. You will be asked to schedule an appointment for pickup of your items. Each appointment will provide a 15-minute window for pickup at the back entrance of the Armacost Library building. If you are unable to pick up requested items, we will also offer to send items to your current address. 

If you have items you would like to return, please use the book drop located at the back entrance or mail using USPS book rate. We have extended due dates, so please hold on to your books/DVDs/scores if there is not a rush to return. 

Faculty and students are encouraged to use the library’s remote services to get help with library and research questions.

Please check the library website for updates to hours and services. If you have any questions, please contact us during our reference chat hours or email library@redlands.edu.

Are the Graduate Theological Union libraries open?

Remote services will continue Monday through Friday from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

COMMUNITY SERVICE

What has the University done to help the local community during this crisis?

The University partnered with Loma Linda University to offer walk-in medical services for the homeless during the California Phase 2 “stay at home” period. The situation closed many private shelters that previously offered homeless services.

The University donated 10,000 pounds of food to Family Services Association of Redlands and 3,000 pounds of food to Inland Harvest to replenish stocks that have been depleted due to the growing need to combat hunger within the region.

The University’s athletic training staff also donated personal protection equipment from their existing supplies to Redlands Community Hospital.

I am a U of R employee experiencing financial hardship. Are there resources available for me?

Yes, in recognition of the importance of providing direct assistance to our employees during this time, U of R President Ralph W. Kuncl has initiated the Employee Emergency Fund to provide financial support for employees whose households face urgent, unanticipated needs. These one-time emergency grants do not need to be paid back.

To submit an application, please complete a short questionnaire, which is also available from the Employee Emergency Fund web page.

Applications will be reviewed by a four-person committee, composed of a representative from the faculty, Finance, Human Resources, and University of Redlands Staff and Administrators Assembly (URSAA). All requests will remain confidential. Awards relating to the current COVID-19 pandemic (and other national states of emergency) are exempt from taxes, while other grants are taxable.

COLLEGE OF ARTS AND SCIENCES

What is the status of the College's study abroad programs?

Most students who planned to study abroad in fall 2020 are changing their plans to spring 2021. For more information see the Study Away website or email Director of the Study Away Office Andrea Muilenburg.

What can I do if I am enrolled in online classes and I do not have electronic devices and Wi-Fi that enable me to participate in online and distance instruction?

If students have a particular need to use an electronic device from home, we encourage them to speak with the Instructional Technology Services team in the Jones Computer Center to review options, including accessibility of other facilities with connectivity.

I would like tutoring, but I am taking classes remotely. What can I do?

Students can log into the Student Development Center’s tutor scheduling page to schedule an online tutoring appointment for both subject and writing tutoring. If they haven’t used the site before, they will need to register for an account. More information is available on the Tutoring Services webpage.

GRADUATE AND PROFESSIONAL EDUCATION

What is the School of Business doing to respond?

At this time, the School of Business continues to hold technology-enhanced classes (with no on-campus meetings).

How has the Graduate School of Theology responded?

The Marin campus’s San Francisco Theological Seminary of the Graduate School of Theology moved to online instruction on March 10 in order to maintain curricular integration with the Graduate Theological Union (GTU) and the University of California, Berkeley. 

What is the School of Education doing to support the transition to technologically enhanced learning?

All of U of R’s Southern California regional campuses are currently closed, and instruction continues via technology-enabled learning. 

To support this transition to online or technologically enhanced modules for the remainder of the spring semester, the School of Education has:

  • Formed a support team of faculty members who have online design experience to help support their colleagues move their remaining classes to a new format.
  • Sent a message to all faculty about the change, with resources embedded in the message.
  • Sent a note to all current students about the changes.
  • Sent a dedicated note to fieldwork students specific to their situation.

Is the School of Continuing Studies also changing course modalities?

The School of Continuing Studies (SCS) has temporarily moved all traditional classroom teaching into online and technologically enhanced modules. Faculty should individually update students about each class. Students can also reach out to the SCS staff members with questions.

ACADEMIC AFFAIRS

Where can I find more information about the status of Academic Affairs support areas?

An update on the status of Academic Affairs support areas—including Information Technology Services, Registrar, Office of Career and Professional Development, Veterans and Military Support Services, the Office of International Students and Scholars, the Center for Spatial Studies, the Deans’ Offices, and the Provost’s Office—was provided in a March 19 memo from the provost.

For updates on the Armacost Library, see https://library.redlands.edu/covid19.

EVENTS

Will campus events and/or activities be canceled or postponed?

Following guidance from county authorities, all non-essential events have been canceled for the time being. 

Was 2020 Commencement canceled?

The traditional commencement ceremonies that had been scheduled on the Redlands campus have been postponed and reimagined. The University community also held many virtual celebrations

The Graduate School of Theology held a small virtual experience in May, and the Class of 2020 is invited to return to campus in May 2021 to participate in a festive joint ceremony.

FACILITIES AND OPERATIONS

Are the Southern California regional campuses open?

All U of R Southern California regional campuses and sites currently remain closed; instruction continues via technology-enabled learning.

What is open on the Marin campus?

On the Marin campus, residential Graduate School of Theology students are able to stay in their apartments, and only essential services (institutions of higher education are listed among these) may remain open.  The Graduate Theological Union library is closed, with distance support provided to students and faculty.

Will the mailroom remain open for regular hours? How can I get my UPS, FedEx, and DHL Packages? How do we handle deliveries of supplies when the office is closed?

MAIL

On the Redlands campus, incoming and intra-office mail can be picked up at the Office Services window, located in the rear entrance to North University Hall, between the hours of 10 a.m. and noon. Inquiries should be directed to Darin Hinman at darin_hinman@redlands.edu

The Student Mail Center will be open from 10 a.m. to noon on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. Otherwise, staff at the Student Mail Center are working from home during the campus closure. Please call 909-748-8427 with inquiries.

Mail on the Marin campus will be collected twice per week by Su Hanson and distributed to Marin mailboxes, or, if intended for Redlands, forward it to the Redlands campus.

UPS, FEDEX, DHL PACKAGES

Warehouse receiving services are operating on a reduced schedule. Package deliveries from FedEx, UPS, etc. will be accepted from 10 a.m. to noon daily. Members of the campus community may retrieve their packages on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 10 a.m. to noon at the warehouse receiving door located on the east side of the Facilities Management building, near the loading dock along Grove Street. For any non-emergency concerns or questions, please e-mail Facilities Management at facilities@redlands.edu.

OFFICE SUPPLIES

Office Depot orders will be centrally delivered to Office Services rather than individual departments.  Offices can pick up their Office Depot orders from Office Services during window hours.  Please note that Office Depot may not be able to deliver University-ordered items during the hours that Office Services is open so orders may be delayed.

Office Services does have an Office Depot store card that can be checked out so employees can go in person to Office Depot to purchase supplies, if needed.  Arrangements will have to be made in advance with Office Services to check out the store card.  You can call Office Services at 909-748-8010 or 909-748-8429 to make arrangements.  Purchases made using the store card will be priced with the University discount.  Purchases made at Office Depot on personal credit cards or regular University credit cards will not receive the University’s price discounts.

How can I make check requests during the work-from-home and transitional periods? Is there an electronic format for submission? What about other areas of Finance?

Check Disbursements - Accounts Payable

The University will print checks once a week on Thursdays and checks will be mailed Fridays. Check Requests or Reimbursement Requests can be submitted by dropping off the completed forms to the Accounts Payable Office Monday through Thursday, during regular business hours (9 a.m. to 4 p.m.). The Administration Building will be locked, so you will need to call the Accounts Payable Office at 909-748-8185 or Public Safety at 909-748-8888 for access to the building. As an alternative, if you are not physically on campus, you can email your completed check request/expense reimbursement forms and supporting documentation (invoice/receipts) to AP@redlands.edu. For all forms submitted electronically, please retain original receipts and/or invoices for 90 days. Do NOT resubmit the originals to Accounts Payable.

If your budget manager cannot physically sign the check request/expense reimbursement, Accounts Payable will accept unsigned documents along with an explicit email approval by the appropriate budget manager. An example of an explicit email approval would be: “I, Pat Caudle, approve the check request to vendor ABC in the amount of $100 for payment of invoice 12356.”

Cashier Deposits

The University will process department deposits and student account check payments on Tuesdays and Thursdays. If you have a cash receipt deposit form and related check/cash/credit card charges or a student account payment, please drop off these items at the Cashier’s drop box, located under the Cashier’s window in the Administration Building. Please make sure items placed in the drop box are in a sealed envelope so that items for deposits are not mixed together. The Administration Building will be locked so you will need to contact 909-748-8185 or Public Safety at 909-748-8888 for access to the building.

If you need finance business matters assistance during the closure, you can contact Controller Pat Caudle on her cell phone at 951-236-1331.

Budgets

The University budget team continues to adapt forecasts of the financial impact of the COVID-19 disruption.

Are other administration departments of the University operational?

The University’s administration teams are covering all essential business services with staffing plans utilizing social distancing protocols. 

Human Resources

The Human Resources Department remains open and fully functional, although with a significantly reduced physical staff presence in the office at any one time. All HR staff are actively reviewing their email and voicemails and returning messages. If you would like to meet with a member of the HR team, please reach out directly to determine how best to meet. The entire department is set up to conduct transactions remotely relying heavily on WebEx. The HR team is working with the University’s Employee Assistance Program (EAP) to identify additional resources available to our employees, free of charge, during these uncertain times.

Public Safety

The Public Safety Department remains open and fully functional with dispatchers staffing the phones and officers patrolling the campus on a 24/7 basis. Public Safety management personnel are working from home and on-campus, as needed. Email and voicemail messages are being actively monitored at all times and will be responded to accordingly. We encourage any Public Safety questions or requests for service to be handled by telephone instead of in-person at the front counter to the greatest extent possible. Should you need Public Safety assistance, please call 909-748-8888.  

Building Maintenance and Custodial Services

Custodial Service will service only those areas on campus that are occupied. For Building Maintenance, please submit work requests as normal as staff will be monitoring the work order system. For any facilities emergencies, please contact Public Safety at 909-748-8888. Facilities Management staff will remain on call for emergency situations.

Administrative Services and Events

Administrative Services and Event Services remain open and fully functional; however, staff are working from home unless needed on campus. Department staff members are actively reviewing their email and voicemails and returning messages.

Please call 909-748-8052 for questions about contracts, vending machines, or water units. Please call 909-748-8116 for Event Services support.

The Copy Center staff continue to service University copiers and are available to process any copy jobs on an as-needed basis. Please call 909-748-8462 for Copy Center inquiries.

The bookstore continues to service all web orders, including textbooks and merchandise, although the store remains closed to patrons. Please call 909-748-8951 for inquiries.

STUDENT SUPPORT SERVICES

What student services will be available in the fall?

Information Technology Services will remain available to assist students, faculty, and staff in need of technology support.

The Office of Academic Success and Disability Services will continue to work remotely.

The Office of Career and Professional Development remains open and has transitioned all of its offerings to an online format (see next question).

The Office for Campus Diversity and Inclusion and Native Student Programs will remain active in planning programming and events.

The Counseling Center will resume services via video platform and phone to all registered U of R students starting Wednesday, August 26. In the meantime, students with counseling emergencies should call the 24/7 crisis line at 909-748-8960.  The Counseling Center also encourages students to reach out to care providers they have worked with in the past or who are near their home, as they may be offering virtual therapy and can help prevent gaps in care. If you are a student having difficulty finding a community mental health provider, please reach out via email to Counseling Center Director Matt Gragg, at matt_gragg@redlands.edu. If you know a student who needs help, please also encourage the student to connect with the Counseling Center.

The Armacost Library, Registrar’s Office, and Center for Spatial Studies all continue to provide services remotely to students and faculty.

What changes have been made to Office of Career and Professional Development (OCPD) activities?

  • Career Studio: The career studio is running with the same support, during the same hours, but virtually. The hours are: Monday, 12–4 p.m.; Tuesday, 12–6 p.m; Wednesday, 12–6 p.m.; Thursday, 12–5pm; and Friday, 8 a.m.-12 p.m.  Reserve a time slot.
  • Employer Information Sessions and Career Studio Topic-Based Sessions: These sessions continue virtually. Check Handshake for links to join.
  • Resources:  University of Redlands Handshake and Careershift are still available and robust resources for those seeking job and internship opportunities. StandOut is available for practicing for virtual mock interviews. If students would like to utilize the mock interview feature, they should email ocpd@redlands.edu and a practice mock interview link will be emailed to them. Check the Handshake Resource Library for additional materials available online to assist with resume and cover letter preparation, networking strategies, salary negotiation tips, job and internship strategies, and more.

REDLANDS CAMPUS RESIDENCE LIFE

Are you planning residential life on the Redlands campus in the fall?

We anticipate that state guidelines will require undergraduate residential communities to remain closed at this time. Limited exceptions may be possible, for example for continuing international students and students who have already been identified as housing insecure. Students with a significant need to reside on campus can complete the Housing Exception Request form located on the MyRedlands Housing Portal under Applications and Forms.

Residence Life and Housing will communicate instructions for arranging a return to housing when that becomes possible. Those students who received off campus approval by “temporary suspension of the residential requirement” maintain their status for the duration of the 2020–21 academic year.

Because graduate housing units, including on the Marin campus, are apartments for family dwelling (rather than residence halls), no changes are anticipated.

Where can I find more information about the housing situation on the Redlands campus?

A separate FAQ about housing on the Redlands campus is available through Residence Life and Housing.

ATHLETICS

What is the status of SCIAC competitions and other athletics programs?

As recently announced by the Southern California Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (SCIAC), SCIAC presidents and athletic directors have reluctantly, but unanimously, agreed to cancel conference competition for high-contact sports in the fall semester even with the chance we might be in residence; the affected sports teams include football, volleyball, men’s and women’s soccer, men’s water polo, and men’s and women’s basketball. If the state enters Stage 3 of its reopening plan, SCIAC will consider opportunities for conference competition in low and medium contact risk sports including men's and women's cross country, tennis, golf, and swimming and diving.

EMPLOYMENT

How do I know if I should work from home?

As we transition back to some on-site work, please discuss whether you should be reporting to work in-person or remotely with your supervisor.

What is the University’s guidance for working remotely at this time?

Please see the University’s Interim Telecommuting Policy.

When will the work-from-home period end?

We are gradually transitioning to some on-site work on our campuses based on local public-health guidance. Please consult with your supervisor on your particular situation.

What if I have a previously approved vacation scheduled during the University’s closure or during approved pandemic-related telecommuting?

You will continue to use the vacation code for all previously approved vacation hours that are during the University closure if you are actually still using the time as vacation.  If your vacation plans were altered because of the pandemic and you will be at home (working or not), work with your supervisor to make changes to your timecard as appropriate to your situation.

What is the University doing to keep the community safe as we transition back to some on-site work?

On the Redlands and regional campuses the University is currently:

  • Deep cleaning offices, cubicles, lobbies, bathrooms, etc.
  • Working with supervisors to identify modifications to workspaces, common areas, and technology to accommodate social distancing and a low-density model of work life
  • Posting new signage with reminders about hand washing, social distancing, and other safety protocols
  • Distributing personal protective equipment (face coverings and gloves) and sanitizing products (we also encourage employees to bring their own if possible, as some of these items are backordered)

What options can supervisors consider to maintain social distancing and accommodate individual needs?

Supervisors can consider a variety of options, including:

  • Having people work different days of the week or in shifts
  • Temporarily relocating workspaces for those who share areas that do not allow for 6 feet of social distancing
  • Allowing employees to continue to telecommute full-time or part-time

Please see Return to Work Guidance for Supervisors and the additional FAQ document, which includes a section for supervisors.

What can I do to protect the health and safety of the U of R community?

You can contribute to the safety of our community through your actions by following the University’s guidance:

  • Individuals on campus must remain a minimum of six (6) feet away and/or separated by a solid barrier from all other individuals unless closer interaction is absolutely required to perform their job duties, and then face coverings are required. Employees must minimize face-to-face contact with others to the greatest extent possible.
  • All employees must wear face coverings when in the presence of others or when leaving their own workspace. Coverings may consist of a bandana, surgical mask, scarf, etc. and must fully shield the mouth and nose.
  • All employees should wash their hands frequently.
  • Employees with positions that include touching items often used by others (credit cards, computers, copiers, printers, trashcans, books, etc.) must wear disposable gloves and change them regularly throughout the day.
  • Employees who are sick should stay home (or leave work immediately), notifying their supervisor; before returning to work, employees should call their health care provider for instructions regarding return to work if they have been ill.

For more information on prevention and safety protocols, see the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website.

I have an underlying health condition. Can the University force me to return to work?

For those employees with an underlying health condition that could affect their return to work, please contact your supervisor or the Human Resources Department. Refer to the Interim COVID-19 Policies for more information.

I'm healthy, but I don’t feel safe and have been working from home just fine. Do I have to go back?

Yes, you have to return to work. Fear isn’t a legal reason for refusing to return to work. If you have a diagnosed physical or mental-health disability, such as severe anxiety, and the pandemic is exacerbating that disability, please contact Human Resources to begin an interactive process for reasonable accommodations under the Americans with Disabilities Act.

The Interim Covid-19 policies provide details on how the University is working to maintain a safe and healthy work environment as well as details on alternate work options.

What can I do if my supervisor doesn’t enforce social distancing?

First, we would encourage every employee to begin the conversation with their immediate supervisor. If you have addressed your concerns with your supervisor and feel your concerns are not being heard, then please work through your leadership chain.

The University has called me back to the office, and schools are still closed. What do I do if I have no one to look after my kids?

The University recognizes that some employees are in a difficult spot, since schools and day care are a prerequisite for many people to go to work. Please work with your supervisor to see what temporary scheduling or telecommute options may be available to you.

Do I have to report any coronavirus symptoms to my supervisor?

Employees are encouraged to proactively report any symptoms and to stay home and visit their medical provider if they are experiencing any symptoms.

Can my supervisor send me home if I’m showing symptoms?

Yes. The University has a duty to protect all of its employees, including you.

Where can I find further information about U of R policies during this time?

Still have questions?

If your questions about the U of R response to the COVID-19 situation are not answered above, please email student_affairs@redlands.edu. For more information on the virus itself, see the FAQ from the CDC.

 

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COVID-19 Employee Policies