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Mt. SAC Emergency Alert

Alert: Mt. SAC has Transitioned to Online Classes and Services (see www.mtsac.edu/online). Learn more about our COVID-19 response at www.mtsac.edu/health.

Clarifying Mt. SAC Response to Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Health Alert

March 12, 2020 - 04:20 PM

Coronavirus blood testUpon hearing the questions from students, faculty and staff, Mt. San Antonio College officials are releasing this Health Alert to clarify the college’s current response to coronavirus (COVID-19) in the format of Frequently Asked Questions.

At this time, the college is heavily reducing social contact as recommended by the Department of Public Health to mitigate exposure to the virus.  See all previous Health Alerts at www.mtsac.edu/health.

Is the campus still open?

We are open for students, closed to visitors. We are limiting social gatherings and increasing vigilance just as the California Department of Public Health has recommended. There are no cases of coronavirus among our students and employees.

Is the college going to be closing?

We are already closed to visitors. At this time, the Department of Public Health does not recommend that the campus stop classes and instruction. We are constantly scanning the situation for assessment.  

Is the college going online anytime soon?

The college is providing training to allow faculty the opportunity to move in-person classes to technology-mediated instruction, contingent on meeting course outcomes and providing equitable access. Details will be provided to faculty through the Office of the Vice President of Instruction, Academic Senate and Faculty Association. We are working as fast as we can to make this possible.

Why is Mt. SAC not fully closing when other colleges are?

The college is following Department of Public Health recommendations for colleges and universities each step of the way. Other colleges may have different threat levels or use different guidelines. It is important to notice the details in the announcements about other campus plans. Most campuses in the area are actually open but moving in-person classes online at a later date.

 

I am sick, will I get in trouble for not coming to class?

Anyone who has a fever, cough or shortness of breath should stay away from campus, even if the symptoms are mild. To encourage sick individuals to stay away from campus, faculty and supervisors are encouraged to provide flexibility for students and staff, as well as minimize any penalties for absence due to sickness. If you feel concerns about the faculty member’s approach, contact your department chair or the division office for support.

Are events canceled?

Mt. SAC is severely limiting events effective March 13, 2020 through at least May 2, 2020. Please note these dates may change as more information becomes available.

  • Nonessential large gatherings must be canceled, postponed, modified or brought online.
  • Events bringing external visitors to campus must be canceled, postponed, modified or brought online.
  • The campus is closed to visitors. They are asked to conduct business through phone, email, video call, or web conferencing.
  • Athletic events may continue with only the student athletes, coaches and essential staff.
  • Instructional activities, such as performances, may continue with only the enrolled students, faculty and essential staff.

Employees have free access to ConferZoom, allowing them to have online meetings with up to 300 participants. Learn more at www.conferzoom.org.

Can we still go off-campus for school or sporting events?

Maybe. All travel – near or far – is severely limited at this time.

  • Business travel is no longer permitted. Requests for exemptions must be approved at the vice presidential level. The college will support alternative methods of meeting using communication technology. Employees have free access to ConferZoom, allowing them to have online meetings with up to 300 participants. Learn more at conferzoom.org.
  • Instructional administrators and faculty are limiting the travel of students off-site for field trips, internships, flight practice, clinicals, etc. Chairs and deans will work with faculty to provide alternative assignments for students to meet their academic requirements.
  • Athletic events may continue with only the student athletes, coaches and essential staff.
  • Instructional activities, such as performances, may continue with only the enrolled students, faculty and essential staff.

What are you doing to stop the Coronavirus from spreading?

For the full details, read the health alert notices at www.mtsac.edu/health. In short, limiting travel, canceling events, minimizing social gatherings, increasing cleaning at high traffic areas, supplying extra soap and paper towels.

What should I do to stay safe?

Each individual should do what is best for them and their unique needs. In general, public health agencies say the BEST preventative measures are simple good hygiene practices:

  • If you are sick, stay home. Anyone with even mild symptoms should stay home.
  • Wash your hands often, especially before you eat, after using the restroom or blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing. If you cannot wash your hands with soap and water for 20 seconds, use a hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth in case your hands are not clean.
  • Cover your nose and mouth when you cough or sneeze. Use your sleeve if you don’t have a tissue handy. If you have these symptoms, stay away from campus.
  • Avoid sharing objects like cups, food and drinks.
  • Minimize contact, and avoid shaking hands and high-fiving. Stay at least 6 feet from sick individuals.
  • Practice healthy habits. Get plenty of sleep, stay active, manage your stress, drink plenty of fluids and eat nutritious foods.

Who can I speak to about this issue?

If you are an employee, work with your supervisor. Students should speak with their professor, department chair or division office. The community is also invited to submit feedback through the website at www.mtsac.edu/health so that all members of the Public Health Team can track and review your feedback.