How Roanoke is Prepared

General cleanliness and health monitoring measures

Ramping up cleaning and disinfecting protocols

In addition to five-day cleaning and sanitizing in all buildings and restrooms on campus, cleaning personnel will receive daily temperature checks and the correct PPE (masks, gloves, or gowns) before starting daily activities.

Cleaners from Aramak Corporation will clean and disinfect spaces and high-touch areas in the morning before student arrival and residence hall cleaning by mid-morning. They will use Virex, the CDC-approved disinfectant that generally kills germs in between two and four minutes. The College has obtained a contract for electrostatic disinfecting machines that quickly disinfect large areas more quickly than manual hand cleaning. Additional sanitizers, both wipes and spray bottles, will be made available in classrooms for self-service use and shared self-sanitizing responsibility.

Dining areas will close down operations at various times between meals to clean and disinfect all the larger serving and seating areas. Guidelines issued by the CDC and the VDH will be followed. Tables and chairs will be disinfected after each use per the current guideline.

Using technology to monitor health conditions to detect infection

The College developed a self-assessment tool, called COVID Tracker, that will be available as a web form and compatible on any device. All faculty, staff, and students will complete the assessment each day. Positive responses will be sent to Student Health and Counseling Services (SHCS) for follow-up. Once the self-assessment is completed, individuals will receive a confirmation email. This confirmation serves as proof the assessment was completed and potentially used as an “admission ticket” to gain entrance to classrooms and work spaces.

SHCS will use Quidel SARS-CoV-2 point-of-care antigen testing for symptomatic students. Faculty and staff will be encouraged to utilize personal health care providers or local urgent care centers to obtain testing unless they were identified as a direct contact of a person under investigation (PUI) or an individual who has tested positive. In this event, faculty or staff members would receive appropriate testing and support.

PyraMED Health is an electronic health record software utilized by SHCS. The web portal allows students to securely communicate with providers, electronically submit pre-entrance health forms, view and print immunization history, receive lab results, and schedule appointments. 

The College will use a testing model which provides a symptom screening and testing as indicated before arriving on campus. Students in special risk categories such as athletes and choir members will be asked to submit evidence of a negative test before participating in related activities.

Making hand sanitizer readily available all over campus

Hand sanitizers with high alcohol content, both wall-mount and some free-standing units, have been ordered and will be installed in the lobbies of all the buildings nearest the entrance elevators so that hand disinfection can take place before entering the main parts of the buildings, classrooms or elevators. There are plenty of bathrooms in and around campus buildings where frequent handwashing will be encouraged and expected.

Limiting the sharing of supplies

In laboratories and studios where equipment is normally shared, new practices have been instituted so that sharing is minimized. Many materials will be dispensed so that students do not need to share common supplies. Shared equipment and keypads will be sanitized between users. Sanitizing wipes will be placed appropriately. In some cases, disposable gloves will be used. 

In laboratories and computer centers where equipment is shared, there will be sanitation stations with disinfectant wipes, spray or pour spout bottles, and disposable paper towels for one-time use on a self-service or self-help basis. 

In dining areas, napkin dispensers and salt and pepper shakers will be removed from the tables. All condiments will be served at the stations. Silverware will be distributed to the students in bags. Touchless napkin dispensers will be available for use. For locations that are using disposables, touchless disposable silverware dispersers will be used. Items that can be reused will only be used for a single guest and then must be cleaned and disinfected before use again.

Classroom/learning environment changes

Assigning occupancy limits to all classrooms

In standard classrooms, student seating will be six feet apart. All classrooms have been evaluated and assigned a new occupancy limit. For most classrooms, the new occupancy will be 50% of normal capacity. In rooms with theater-style seating, however, new occupancies will be 25% or less. Excess seating will be removed or marked and blocked so that students can easily see which seats allow them to maintain social distance.

Very few classes at Roanoke College enroll more than 30 students. Whenever possible, the College has assigned courses into rooms large enough to allow all students to attend in-person every day with social distancing measures in place. Courses that cannot be assigned to larger rooms will be taught via a hybrid or exclusively online mode of delivery, such that they never exceed the new room occupancy levels that maintain social distancing. In most cases, faculty are using a mix of staggered attendance and synchronous online classes via Zoom. 

Making adjustments to laboratory courses

Section caps have been reduced in some courses so that maximum occupancy is not exceeded. New studio and laboratory sections have been added to accommodate displaced students. Other courses are adopting A/B weekly schedules so that, for example, half of the students are in lab one week while the other half of the students complete a virtual lab experiment. 

In laboratories and studios where equipment is normally shared, new practices have been instituted so that sharing is minimized. Many materials will be dispensed so that students do not need to share common supplies. Shared equipment and keypads will be sanitized between users. Sanitizing wipes will be placed appropriately. In some cases, disposable gloves will be used. 

Hybrid and Online Classes

Only about 15% of our classes will be online this fall. By July 20, students will see the notation “online” when they check their schedule via Self Service or Elucian Go if they are in an online course. In most cases, online courses will be meeting via Zoom during regularly scheduled class hours. Any course not labeled as online will be meeting either fully in-person or in a hybrid model. Course instructors will post more information on Inquire and email students directly before the start of classes. As always, students can make schedule changes if they prefer a different course, subject to open seats and compatible time blocks. Some departments have no online courses.

Residence hall changes

Limiting entry to residence halls

Residential students only have cardkey access to their assigned residence hall. No outside visitors are allowed in the residence halls. Residents may not entertain other residents of the same residence hall in their room; however, they can meet in the hall lounges

Reconfiguring living areas

Residence hall lounges and bathrooms are clearly posted with their maximum capacity. Bedrooms have a maximum capacity of the residents assigned to live there. Additionally, bedrooms are set up to maximize space between residents.

Dining hall changes

Reconfiguring dining areas

Floor markers and directional signage will be installed in all locations to promote social distancing. Tables and seating are being modified to only allow single seating with 6 feet of space between guests and tables to meet VDH guidelines. Designated entrance and exits will be created with barriers to separate and reduce the risk of potential exposure. 

Once we move to different phases that will allow for more seating, or groups of people to sit together, we will modify tables with additional chairs while still maintaining the 6 feet of distance between tables.

Including take-out food options and eliminating self-service stations

The use of take-out will be an option and encouraged for our customers as we continue to enforce the social distancing guidelines. Depending on staffing and the availability of student labor, the plan is to implement a campus delivery program. We would deliver various menu options around campus in clean and sanitized containers that would be touchless until the customer receives their order. Payment would be made online before delivery so no contact for payment would be received.

Closely monitoring occupancy in dining halls

Occupancy levels in all locations are modified and have significantly fewer seats. The cashier in each location will be monitoring seating and holding guests at the cashier stations until appropriate seating is available, been cleaned and disinfected. We are looking to install crowd counters in the operations with a display screen outside the areas that would show the customer the capacity, seats available and potential wait times. 

Campus recreation changes

Changing recreation protocols

Occupancy at the Belk Fitness Center will be limited and monitored by staff. Equipment is spaced to permit 10 feet of separation. Spotting at weight stations will not be permitted unless the participants are from the same household. Personal training sessions will not be permitted inside the Belk Fitness Center.

The number of people in the game room and group fitness room will comply with occupancy guidelines, and the College may require advanced sign-up for specific timeslots. Game areas and workout areas will be spaced so physical distancing can be maintained. Staff will monitor participants.

The College will be adding virtual intramural offerings, such as fantasy football, that can be played online. Additionally, the College will consider offering golf, tennis, pickleball, and other sports where the participants would infrequently come within six feet of each other. Team sports that involve close play, such as flag football, basketball, and soccer will be on hiatus until further notice.