Forward Together Update—11/3/20

Dear Campus Community, 

The COVID-19 pandemic remains an omnipresent challenge. In recent weeks we’ve seen a rise in COVID-19 cases in Black Hawk County, the State of Iowa and across the nation. As a porous campus filled with active, engaged and community-minded individuals, our campus is not immune to this increase. Data available through the Panther Health Survey and our contact tracing work indicate that our teaching and learning spaces are safe, and that the COVID-19 spread is occurring off campus.

Remember - Keep Yourself Protected

As we enter this period of increased COVID-19 activity, follow this health guidance - especially as the cold weather drives more events indoors:

  • Diligently wear your face covering both on and off campus. 

  • Physically distance both on and off campus. 

  • Wash your hands and utilize the hand sanitizer stations on campus. 

  • Get your flu shot now. The UNI Student Health Clinic is providing free flu shots. 

  • Monitor your health daily via the Panther Health Survey

  • Stay home if you’re sick. Seriously, stay home and call to get tested at 319-273-2009. 

The University is Actively Working to Slow the Spread

During this time the university will continue to:

  • Promote behaviors that reduce the spread. The university is encouraging students, faculty, and staff to stay home or self-isolate when appropriate, recommending and reinforcing hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette, requiring and recommending the use of masks among students, faculty and staff, and communicating through signs and messages everyday protective measures. 
  • Maintain healthy environments. The university is regularly cleaning and disinfecting campus spaces, has changed its HVAC systems to non-recirculating air to bring more fresh air, has reduced occupancy (de-densified) in classrooms, offices, and common spaces, and has placed physical barriers in areas where it is difficult for individuals to remain 6 feet apart. 
  • Prepare for when someone gets sick. The university is advising sick individuals to not end isolation until they meet CDC’s criteria, providing sick students within community housing isolation rooms, cleaning and disinfecting areas used by a sick person according to CDC guidelines, notifying local health officials of sick individuals, and working with local health officials to notify close contacts. 
  • Maintain healthy operations. The university has developed the Panther Health Survey allowing students, faculty, and staff to report symptoms, a positive test, or exposure, implemented flexible sick leave policies, updated its continuity of operations plans, trained staff on all COVID-19 safety protocols, is providing resources to support coping and resilience, and is testing students, faculty, and staff when they are symptomatic or have been potentially exposed to COVID-19. 

We must not get complacent; we must keep doing our part to slow the spread. 

Stay well,

Colleen Mulholland, Dean of the College of Education
Joseph Rayzor, Director of Risk Management, Environmental Health and Safety