« USciences COVID-19 Task Force Update (8/6/2020) | Main | A Message from President Paul Katz »


USciences COVID-19 Task Force Update (8/15/2020)

To: All Staff, Faculty, and Students

Please carefully read these important updates from the COVID-19 Task ForceWe are excited to come together - both remotely and in person - as we finalize preparations for the fall semester in the coming weeks. This will certainly be an unusual semester and year, and we know that our university community is ready to fulfill our educational mission for our new and continuing students.  As an institution committed to educating science and healthcare professionals for the future, we are confident that our students, faculty, and staff will do everything they can to maintain the safety of our community; our future colleagues and patients will expect no less.  Together as a community we are ready to rise to this challenge!  

Review the “Return to Campus Guidelines”

Last week the Task Force updateUSciences’ Return to Campus Guidelines; the updated PDF and webpages are available at Campus Guidelines. These updates include additional detail on processes for isolation and quarantine for students, new information on student move-in procedures, clarification on classroom and laboratory occupancy, as well as information on dining services.  These Guidelines should be your primary and first source for information regarding our return to campus plan. You will be alerted when new information is added.

Students at clinical sites

We remind students who are participating in clinical rotations that, regardless of location, all students are still required to abide by USciences COVID-19 guidelines and University policies.  This includes wearing of face coverings at clinical sites (even if local regulations are less stringent), as well as protocols for students with potential exposure.  As a reminder, students who have been isolated or quarantined due to COVID-19 exposure or infection MUST obtain permission from the Director of Student Health prior to either returning to campus or to any clinical site.

Faculty, Staff, and Student Worker Safety Trainings & Attestation

Ensuring the health of our campus community remains our top priority. As a reminder (or as an FYI for those now returning) all faculty, staff, and student workers are required to complete safety-related training and a COVID-19 Individual Responsibility Statement and Attestation before returning to campus.

Re: Training

All full-time benefits-eligible faculty and staff are to complete training through BizLibrary prior to coming on-site, via https://usciences.bizlibrary.com or by going to https://usciences.onecampus.com. Just enter BizLibrary into the search bar and click on the heart to make it a favorite. There are two video lessons posted in your queues (“The Basics of Covid-19” and “Safe Re-entry during COVID-19 for employees”), that will take no longer than 30 minutes to complete. Thank you to everyone who has already completed the training. 

All adjunct staff, student workers, or other part-time staff are to access the training through our Employee Assistance Program (EAP)  via  https://www.theeap.com as follows :  Go to the top of the page and click on Employees and Families.  Create a username and password.  Click on "Trainings" which will bring you to the BizLibrary Training Center.  Enter "Re-Entry During Covid-19 for Employees" - this is the only training that needs to be completed. Keep a copy of your certificate (see note below). 

Student workers will receive an additional notification from Student Affairs. New GSIs/GRAs will also receive a notification from their leaders with some special instructions as well. 

Re: COVID-19 Individual Responsibility Statement and Attestation

All individuals must complete the COVID-19 Pandemic Individual Responsibility Statement and Attestation found here in advance of coming to campus. This process should take you no more than 10 minutes to complete, and confirms your commitment to our safety and health priorities. Students will also receive this link from Student Affairs. 

Notes on Compliance/Tracking

Human Resources has posted a master list of participation re: all FT faculty/staff on the home page of the HR Google drive, which is updated daily. Supervisors/Department Leaders should check the list to ensure that those who plan to be on campus have completed these items.

Student Workers should show or provide copies of both their training certificate of completion and confirmation of the attestation to their supervisors prior to their first on-site shift.

Adjunct Staff and TAs with on-site assignments should provide the same materials to the following representatives in each college:  

Samson - Deb Zayon (d.zayon@usciences.edu)

PCP - Kiara Cam (k.cam@usciences.edu)

Misher - Sarah Robinson (s.robinson@usciences.edu)

The Task Force and the entire University Community thank you for your cooperation and attention to these matters. Again, ensuring the health of our campus community must remain our top priority and it will require our commitment to these items to be a reality.  

Cleaning protocols

The Task Force has fielded a number of questions related to protocols for cleaning campus, so we are providing an overview here – with additional detail to be added to the Return to Campus guidelines shortly.

High touch areas (including, but not limited to doorknobs, handrails, bathroom fixtures, water fountains, study room tables, keyboards) will be disinfected by custodial services five times per 8 hour shift (day and evening).  Each classroom will have gloves and disinfecting wipes for use by students/staff/faculty so that individuals may wipe down their desks before use.  

Hand sanitizer stations will be placed at entrances/exits of all buildings, with additional stands placed in high traffic areas in our larger buildings.  These stands will all be in place by the end of August.

Dining hall tables will be wiped down at least every 20-30 minutes and after usage.  

If any campus community member notes a low supply of hand sanitizer, wipes, paper towels, or other critical cleaning supplies, a work order should be submitted through School Dude (available in the OneCampus portal).


Additional information on cleaning protocols is available in the Return to Campus Guidelines.


Campus status updates

In response to a number of questions about timing of installation of various protective measures, please see the below update:

  1. Informational signage (face coverings/hand hygiene, etc.) - already in place on most doors; remaining signage in public spaces to be posted by the end of next week (8/21)

  2. Directional/distancing signage on floors - in place in Dining Hall/Starbucks/Tasty Drakes.  Additional floor markings will be installed by the end of next week (8/21)

  3. Disinfectant wipes/buckets - Will be distributed to classrooms/teaching labs by 8/28.

  4. Hand sanitizer stations - Wall-mounted hand sanitizer stations already in place in a variety of campus locations including dining hall.  Additional stands delivered 8/11 and will be assembled and in place by 8/21.

  5. Woodland Avenue signage - Large sandwich boards being delivered 8/12 and will be placed on sidewalks at the end of August

  6. Plexiglass shielding - installed at all requested high-traffic locations; additional plexiglass available for new requests.

  7. Dining tent - to be installed in the Quad beginning 8/24. See the Dining Services video to check out specific changes in Wilson Dining Hall and Starbucks.

  8. All air filters in campus buildings will be changed the week prior to the start of classes (week of 8/24).


Questions regarding housing and residence halls

Any questions related to housing and the student residence halls should be sent or referred to Residence Life at reslife@usciences.edu.  Residential students should monitor their USciences’ email for important information regarding the fall semester move-in process.


USciences COVID-19 Information

  • Updated COVID-19 campus guidelines are available here.

  • 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 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.  

  • Information on Pennsylvania travel restrictions and quarantine requirements are available at the PA Department of Health website.  


The COVID-19 Task Force