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USciences COVID-19 Task Force Update (4/8/2020)

To: All Staff, Faculty, and Students

Following our weekly COVID-19 Task Force meeting Monday, we have a number of reminders and updates.  

Congregating on Campus

  • The University takes its responsibility to protect and maintain the health of our community and the public at large very seriously.

  • The CDC and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania have both released recommendations regarding social distancing, including avoiding gatherings and staying at least 6 feet away from others.

  • We are aware of a number of instances where groups have been congregating on campus over the past several weeks.  Going forward, individuals found gathering on campus and disregarding the social distancing guidelines will be removed by USciences Public Safety Officers. 

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Donations

  • Last week, USciences was able to donate a significant amount of materials to the City of Philadelphia Office of Emergency Management that will be distributed to local healthcare institutions in need.

  • The Department of Public Safety will continue to collect any additional items for donation throughout the pandemic event.

  • Process for donation

    • Departments with surplus supplies should package and bring them to the Rosenberger Gymnasium at Alumni Hall (open 24/7) for donation. 

    • Please call ahead to the Public Safety dispatch at 215-895-1117 when ready. An officer will meet donors at the Alumni loading dock on Woodland Avenue (where DPS patrol vehicles park)

    • PPE type, manufacturer, model and quantities among other info should be entered by the donating department’s representative in the Google tracking sheet here.

    • Please note that OEM is not accepting any home-made PPE at this time.

Cloth Masks – calling all tailors/sewers!

  • Pennsylvania Governor Wolf and the CDC have recommended that all individuals wear cloth masks when leaving their homes.  In order to preserve surgical/N-95 masks for healthcare providers, the CDC has provided directions to make homemade masks to be used by non-healthcare providers here.

  • To facilitate the University’s essential employees to comply with this guidance, we are asking anyone in our community who is able to do so to sew and donate masks for our employees’ use.

  • Homemade masks can be dropped off at the Office of Public Safety in Alumni Hall (open 24/7) or can be mailed c/o Michael Lapotasky, Director of Public Safety, 600 South 43rd Street, Philadelphia, PA  19104.


  • There is a significant amount of departmental mail in the campus mailroom at 4619 Woodland Avenue.  The mailroom remains staffed Mondays and Wednesday 10:00am to 4:00pm. Individuals coming to the mailroom during this time should knock on the door to obtain entry.

  • Individuals needing to access departmental mail outside of these hours may contact Public Safety at (215) 895-1117 to obtain access.  Departmental mail is marked and on a shelf in the main lobby of the mailroom.

COVID-19 related fraud

  • Technology Services would like to remind everyone to be careful when accessing their email.  A widespread email scam taking advantage of fears related COVID-19 has been reported by the U.S. Dept. of Homeland Security. 
  • We are seeing an increase in emails with malicious attachments or links to fraudulent websites designed to trick victims into revealing sensitive information or donating to fraudulent charities or causes. 
  • Exercise caution in handling any email with a COVID-19-related subject line, attachment, or hyperlink, and be wary of social media pleas, texts, or calls related to COVID-19. 
  • Verify a charity's authenticity before making donations.
  • If you realize you may have revealed your password, immediately change it at https://usciences.onelogin.com/profile and do not reuse the password in the future.
  • For more information please see the Working Remotely website.  
  • As always, contact the Helpdesk if you are uncertain about the authenticity of a message.

Zoom safety/security

  • There has been some publicity regarding “Zoombombing” – disruptions of Zoom meetings by uninvited guests.  Academic Technology has put together guidance on best practices for Zoom, including prevention of this disruption, available at the Working Remotely link (more details on zoombombing here).


USciences COVID-19 Information

  • Information about the University’s status, FAQs, and links to governmental sites are available on our COVID-19 webpage.

  • COVID-19-related campus messages are posted and archived at the USciences Public Safety Emergency Blog.  

  • Status of campus operations, as well as tips for working and studying remotely are posted at the Working Remotely website.  



The COVID-19 Task Force