Pandemic Recovery Home

Information as of: 8:01 AM, November 23, 2020

Arkansas Tech University is currently in PHASE 1

The phase will be updated according to the pandemic recovery framework when parameters are met and reviewed by the COVID-19 Task Force and Executive Council.

 

Active Cases at ATU 

How ATU Learns of Positive COVID-19 Cases

 

 

 

 

 

 

Health Screening Information

Any ATU student, faculty member or staff member who tests positive for COVID-19 is asked to self-report to the ATU Health and Wellness Center by calling (479) 968-0329 or sending e-mail to hwc@atu.edu. Doing so will allow the university to communicate directly with others who might have been exposed to the virus and take any appropriate cleaning and sanitizing measures. 

ATU students, faculty and staff should continue social distancing practices consistent with guidelines from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as well as guidelines and directives from the Arkansas Department of Health.

COVID-19 Reporting Form 

Please go to the link below, log in using your OneTech user name and password, click “forms”, and open the form called “COVID19 Reporting Form”.

Complete the form to report any of the following:

  1. If you have symptoms of COVID-19
  2. If you have been exposed to COVID-19
  3. If you have been tested for COVID-19

Access Reporting Form

Someone from the ATU Health and Wellness Center will follow up with you. If you cannot access this form, please contact the Health and Wellness Center at 479-968-0329. 

 

 

OFFICIAL INFORMATION NOTICE

Please make sure your cell phone numbers and contact information is current in your ATU Alert account. Do not believe rumors or any statements about outbreaks or class cancellations that are not direct from one or more of the following:

View All ATU Pandemic News Updates

 

 

 

HEALTH, WELLNESS, AND PREVENTION INFORMATION

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is caused by a virus identified by the World Health Organization (WHO) as the source of a new respiratory illness first detected in China, but since has spread to locations around the globe. As a new or previously undetected virus, it was labeled the Novel (new) Coronavirus or COVID-19. Coronaviruses are part of a large family of respiratory virus illnesses.  Previous outbreaks of Coronavirus have included severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS).  On Jan. 30, 2020, the WHO declared the outbreak a “public health emergency of international concern,” and the following day, Jan. 31, 2020, U.S. Health and Human Services declared a public health emergency in the United States. 

Learn more at the CDC’s main Covid-19 website.

All of the actions being taken at this time by ATU are a part of efforts to slow down the spread of COVID-19. Some individuals may interpret these efforts as exaggerated. The goal is not to completely eliminate the presence of cases, but rather slow them down. This is to ensure that the medical infrastructure can respond adequately to confirmed cases of COVID-19 without being overwhelmed. 

Remember that the symptoms — such as a fever, cough or shortness of breath — are similar to common influenza. If you think that you may be contagious, have been in contact with someone who was known to have Coronavirus, or have traveled to an area with a known outbreak, call your health provider in advance. Please do not show up at a clinic, urgent care, ATU Health and Wellness Center, or another health facility without calling first. Your provider will need to take special measures to protect other people in the clinic.

According to the CDC and Arkansas Department of Health, Coronavirus is spread in the same ways as other virus illnesses like common influenza or colds.  Your keys to limiting exposure to all viruses are similar:

  • Wash your hands frequently for at least 20 seconds. Hand sanitizers can be an effective alternative.  For more on handwashing, please visit https://www.cdc.gov/handwashing/
  • Here’s a video from CDC: What You Need To Know About Handwashing
  • Disinfect surfaces that people touch frequently
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth – germs often spread when a person touches something contaminated and then your eyes, nose or mouth.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with your elbow if you cough or sneeze.
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick.
  • If you feel sick, please stay home.

Learn more about how COVID-19 spreads at CDC

Face coverings will be required in all Arkansas Tech University facilities effective Monday, July 27. The only exception is for faculty and staff members who are alone, in their office and with the door closed. Otherwise, any individual in any ATU building is required to wear a face covering.

This revised policy removes any ambiguity and is another step in our commitment to limit the spread of COVID-19. Widespread scientific evidence clearly states that face coverings are an essential aspect of any pandemic mitigation strategy. As a university that is committed to data-driven decisions, expanding the face covering requirement is consistent with our institutional ethos. It’s also the right thing to do as we work to protect not only ourselves, but each other.

As one aspect of the social contract for our collective well-being during the pandemic, students who do not comply with the face coverings policy will be subject to appropriate student conduct procedures as described in the student handbook. The ATU COVID-19 task force and the ATU Office of Human Resources are working with the ATU Faculty Senate and the ATU Staff Senate to finalize procedure recommendations for any cases of ATU employee non-compliance that might occur. These procedures will be consistent with existing handbooks for faculty and staff, and they will be communicated to our university community as soon as they are finalized.

We understand the concern of community members.  The Novel Coronavirus outbreak adds a layer of stress and worry.  If you would like to talk to someone, student support is available at the ATU Health and Wellness Center Information about counselors in the community is available.

Coping with Coronavirus Resources

Both help limit the exposure to people with contagious diseases, but it’s helpful to know the difference.

  • Quarantine is to separate people who were potentially exposed to a contagious disease to see if they start to display symptoms or become sick.
  • Isolation separates sick people with a contagious disease from others

Currently, the CDC and Department of Homeland Security have implemented Federal travel restrictions that may require travelers to enter into 14-day long quarantine due to potential COVID-19 exposure. 

To learn more about quarantine and isolation, go to this CDC page: https://www.cdc.gov/quarantine/quarantineisolation.html


 

FACULTY & STAFF

At this time, it is recommended that ATU staff continue operations with offices remaining open.  In preparation for any future guidance to work from home, we recommend taking time now to make sure you can remotely access your computer. ATU employees can use the University’s VPN (Virtual Private Network) to access their desktop computers. 

ATU employees who perform administrative tasks, or need direct access to their desktop computer from home can use the University’s VPN (Virtual Private Network) to access their desktop computers. Please make sure you are signed up for VPN by following these procedures:

  1. Please read the information regarding connecting to the ATU GlobalProtect VPN on Windows or Mac.
  2. It is recommended that you practice working remotely via the options above so that you are well prepared in case of this need. 

If you require other special connectivity, please let your department head or supervisor know as soon as possible.

For faculty/staff who wish to interact with students via video conferencing, the University has options. Contact the OIS help desk for more information.

If you require other special connectivity, please let your department head or supervisor know as soon as possible.

Yes, any accommodations you were notified of that can be applied to an online setting should be put in place immediately. This includes extra time on exams, access to Power Point slides used in recorded presentations, etc.

Examples of accommodations that would not be appropriate would be things that directly relate to the physical space in the classroom, such as ensuring a student has a seat near the door. You may review a list of approved accommodations for your courses in our instructor portal at https://denali.accessiblelearning.com/ATU/instructor by entering your OneTech username and password. Please contact the Office of Disability Services if you are not sure if an accommodation applies to your course in an online format.

The Campus Support Center has developed instructions for setting extended timers at https://support.atu.edu/support/solutions/articles/7000019167-how-do-i-adjust-a-test-time-for-just-one-student. Please contact them if you have further questions about this process.

It’s important to correctly set a timer for students who are approved for extended time on tests because failing to do so causes them unnecessary stress during an exam, limiting their ability to demonstrate what they have learned in the course. Occasionally instructors will tell students that they are allowed to go past the time limit instead of appropriately adjusting the timer, but this often exacerbates anxiety-related conditions because the student doesn’t truly know if the exam will automatically submit when the timer runs out. Please utilize the link above or call Campus Support if you need assistance in setting up extended time for exams.

There may be students who have worked around disability-related barriers by taking face-to-face classes only, so don’t be surprised if students ask for accommodations due to their condition. Please refer them to our online application at https://denali.accessiblelearning.com/ATU/ApplicationStudent.aspx so we can explore appropriate accommodations and issue a notification letter once the process is complete 

 


TRAVEL

The ATU Travel Office is reviewing all travel relative to the Coronavirus pandemic. 

  • Please review the CDC helpful guidance for travelers. During your travels, stay informed about developments and watch for advisories that could impact your journey and/or your return. 
  • The CDC now recommends travelers, particularly those with underlying health issues, defer all cruise ship travel worldwide

If you have concern about travel within the United States for events, please discuss that with your supervisor/instructor/department.  Any travel into or through areas listed by the CDC, ADH or U.S. State Department as requiring quarantine may limit your ability to return to campus.  Please take into consideration these potential impacts of any travel – official or personal.  If you have concerns about any upcoming travel, international or domestic, please reach out to your instructor, supervisor, or the ATU Travel Office.

To slow the spread of Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) into the United States, the Center for Disease Control and Prevention is working with state and local public health partners to implement after-travel health precautions.

Click on the link below to read more about the CDC after-travel precautions for individuals who have traveled abroad to certain countries:

https://www.cdc.gov/Coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/after-travel-precautions.html

In accordance with this guidance from the CDC and the Arkansas Governor’s office, Arkansas Tech University has made the following determinations:

  • Cancellation of all out-of-state travel by any ATU employees or ATU-sponsored groups.
  • Cancellation or postponement of international travel by ATU-sanctioned programs for the remainder of the spring 2020 semester. A decision on future semesters, including summer 2020, will be made as more information becomes available.
  • Members of the University community who have engaged in international travel should stay home for 14 days from the time they left an area with widespread, ongoing community spread (Level 3 Travel Health Notice countries) and practice social distancing.