Have questions or concerns related to Western’s COVID-19 precautions and preventive measures? Contact Western's COVID-19 Monitoring Team:
We look forward to having you back on campus! And, our Western COVID-19 Monitoring Team has developed a Phased Return Plan to do it as safely as possible. In response to current community conditions, we are operating in the Severe Risk Category. (See details in the Phased Return Plan information below.)
We have implemented processes and protocols that focus on health and safety of everyone who visits our campus locations. Although we cannot guarantee a COVID-19-free environment, we are taking precautions to minimize the spread. This effort is a shared responsibility, and every member of the Western community must do their part.
Please review the information on this website to understand the expectations and safety protocols. If you have any questions about our preventative preparations and procedures, please email the COVID-19 Monitoring Team at firstname.lastname@example.org and someone will respond to you.
In the interest of student and employee safety, courses will be offered in alternative formats wherever possible through the Spring 2021 term. Courses that require face-to-face labs, clinicals, or other training will be offered with reduced class sizes to allow for social distancing.
Western has implemented a Phased Return Plan to bring employees and students back to campus safely. With the continued rise in COVID-19 cases in our region, the phases were revised in mid-November to reflect the current situation and keep the safety of students and employees as the priority.
The revisions create five risk categories: Critical (similar to Safer at Home), Severe, High, Medium, and Low. We have been operating in the equivalent of the High Risk category. Starting after Thanksgiving Break, we moved into the Severe Risk Category, which dials back some of the in-person services that are offered to further reduce the number of people coming on campus.
If you have any questions or concerns about our phased return, you are encouraged to email the COVID-19 Monitoring Team at COVID19@westerntc.edu.
Before coming to campus, it’s important that you consider the following checklist to help Western maintain a healthy environment.
- Perform a self-evaluation each day
Are you feeling different? Stay home if you have symptoms of COVID-19:
- Difficulty breathing
- Sore throat
- Body or muscle aches
- Vomiting or diarrhea
- Loss of smell or taste
- Wear a face mask
- Be courteous and respectful, you are protecting others. Western employees will be wearing face masks to create a welcoming and safe environment. This is one of the many layers in our health and safety protocols.
- Ensure that face masks cover your nose, mouth, and chin and is worn at all times in buildings when around other people.
- Face shields alone are not an adequate replacement for face masks.
- Honor social distancing
- Work and study at least six feet away from others.
- Do not gather in groups.
- Wash your hands
- Wash your hands often and use hand sanitizer after contact with high-touch areas or items.
- Make sure you wash your hands for at least 20 seconds.
Screening practices at designated building entrances will be implemented for all students and employees prior to entering any Western facility. These processes may change, depending upon the phase of our return to campus, new guidelines, and available technology.
For the current process, see the Screening Procedures.
For a list of designated entrances to buildings, see Screening Locations.
Western’s Physical Plant department has been working hard to implement a cleaning plan that follows the recommendations of state and national health departments and uses EPA compliant disinfectants. The current Cleaning and Disinfection Plan, effective June 1, 2020:
- In addition to standard cleaning, teams of custodians will work in zones to disinfect twice a day all restrooms and high-touch points areas (such as like elevators, entrances, drinking fountains, etc.).
- Disinfecting products have been placed in the classrooms for instructors and students to use as needed. These items include a bottle of disinfectant and a roll of shop rags for wiping down tools/equipment, computer keyboards/mice, tabletops.
If someone reports symptoms after having been on campus, cleaning and disinfecting of the work space will follow procedure:
- Close off areas used by the person who was sick.
- Contact facilities and request a deep cleaning and disinfection of the areas where that person might have been.
- Clean and disinfect all areas used by the person who was sick such as offices, bathrooms, common areas, shared electronic equipment such as computers, touch screens, keyboards, remote controls, and telephones.