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Faculty & Staff Updates

Review these updates for answers to questions you may have about our safe return to campus.

Faculty & Staff Updates

Thank you all for your patience and understanding as we begin the Spring 2022 Semester on Wednesday, January 19. Below please find some updates and new procedures.

Masks

  • Only 3- Ply/disposable masks, KN95, or N95 masks are accepted and required on all QCC campuses.
  •  When wearing a 3- Ply/disposable mask, it is encouraged to double-mask.
  • Cloth masks and gaiter masks are no longer accepted for use on all QCC campuses.
  • Approved masks are required at all times in indoor settings, except when eating or in single private offices.
  • KN95/N95 masks will be supplied to all faculty and staff and will be distributed by supervisors and managers. Additional KN95/N95 masks will be available at the Human Resources Office and Campus Police for managers and supervisors, as needed for distribution.
  •  By Wednesday, January 19 faculty will have an adequate supply of masks for students, in the event some students attend class with a non-compliant mask. There will be a box of 3- Ply/disposable mask in each classroom. If a faculty member needs more 3- Ply/disposable masks, they can call Campus Police for additional masks.
  •  Masks should be worn properly, covering both your nose and mouth and encourage others to do so.
  • Masks must also be worn inside College vehicles carrying more than one person.

Vaccinations

  • The College requires all faculty, staff and students to be fully vaccinated with two shots of Pfizer or Moderna, or one shot of Johnson and Johnson, or an approved vaccine validated by QCC’s Health Team, or have an approved accommodation to be on campus.
  •  Those that have an approved accommodation MUST test weekly in order to be on campus.
  • Human Resources, the QCC Health team, and Student Life will use and have access to the Medicat to track and ensure those with an accommodation are testing weekly.
  • While the College is not requiring booster shots at this time, they are highly recommended and we encourage the College community to get a booster shot.
  •  Free COVID-19 Vaccination Clinics will be provided on campus. as well as in the community.  Check QCC’s HealthSafeCampus for updates.

COVID-19 Testing

  • Beginning on Tuesday, January 18, the College will offer asymptomatic testing each week day, from 10:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. on the main campus (670 West Boylston, Worcester at the Athletic Center) BY APPOINTMENT ONLY. Symptomatic Testing will also be held during the same days from noon- 5:00 p.m. BY APPOINTMENT ONLY. Making an appointment for COVID-19 testing is required at this time, in order to better manage the expected demand.
  • Testing will only be offered at the 670 West Boylston Street, Worcester location.
  • COVID-19 testing services will prioritize health-allied programs students, students, faculty and staff with approved reasonable accommodations, students taking in-person classes and faculty/staff required to be on campus who are symptomatic, or have been exposed to a COVID-19 positive person.
  • If you have ANY COVID-19 symptoms, please do NOT enter the Athletic Center. Drive to Lot 2 (last two parking spaces), park and call 774.823.6630 for assistance.
  • Dates, time and locations are subject to change and will be updated regularly.

In-Person Classes

  •  All students who are registered for a 2022 Spring Semester in-person class have been required to be fully vaccinated and upload evidence of compliance or have an approved accommodation.
  •  If a student tests positive for COVID-19, we will follow our contact tracing protocol. Faculty will be notified by the Health team when the contact tracing is completed and will advise on the procedures to follow.
  •  Should a faculty member become sick, the Deans will work with faculty on the continuity of that specific class.

Campus Vaccination Status

  • Currently, close to 100 % of faculty and staff are compliant with QCC’s vaccination requirement and have submitted proof of vaccination.
  • At the start of the Spring Semester, students on campus must be in compliance with the College’s mandatory vaccination policy or they will be dropped from the course and moved to a remote class if one is available.
  • The COVID-19 positivity rate is fluid and constantly changing. To get the most up to date numbers, visit the COVID-19 Testing Dashboard.  

Vendors & Community

  • Outside vendors and others in the community will be required to wear College approved masks (3 Ply/disposable, KN95/N95) when on campus. Most areas should have 3 Ply/disposable masks should a vendor need one or they can be directed to Campus Police to pick up a mask. Vendors will be asked to check the Self-Checker on our website. Should they have any symptoms we ask that they do not come to campus.
  •  As a public and open campus, QCC cannot shut its doors to the community. We have signage on campus, as well as on the website that clearly states our mask and vaccination policy.

On Campus Events

  • Currently, all in person Campus tours and external guests events will be held remotely; however, we will continue to evaluate this as we move forward.

Going Forward

  • We will continue to keep the College community informed and updated through QCC Family emails.

Dear QCC Family,

I want to thank each of you for helping maintain a safe college campus, while continuing to provide the highest level of academic integrity during these unprecedented times. As we enter a new year with new safety protocols in place that require students, faculty and staff to be fully vaccinated unless they have an approved accommodation, I want to take a moment to discuss the current surge in the coronavirus.

Today, due to the highly transmissible omicron variant, we are continuing to follow our current health and safety guidelines found on our HealthySafeCampus. These stringent guidelines are in place to keep our college community as safe and secure as possible. We will continue to monitor the ongoing situation taking into account our college’s current health climate and adjust as needed throughout the year.

Thank you once again for your dedication to our students and your resilience in these ever-changing times. Please make sure to check the HealthySafeCampus frequently for any guideline updates.

If you need assistance or have questions about COVID-19, please email covid19 [at] qcc.mass.edu ().

As you all know from our September 2021 announcement, the Massachusetts Community Colleges’ system-wide COVID-19 vaccine verification requirement for students and employees will take effect this January.

 Today, all 15 community college presidents are communicating an employee vaccination policy effective for our 15 colleges, which requires all employees to provide written proof of full vaccination status by January 3, 2022, absent an approved reasonable accommodation.

Our employee policy has been crafted in consultation with stakeholders across our colleges, and is being implemented to increase the health and safety of our learning and working environments in the face of a continued public health crisis.

To upload your vaccination record information, visit Medicat. The process is easy and can be accessed by your computer or mobile device through HealthySafeCampus.

 If you are not vaccinated, please note that you will need to be vaccinated by January 3, 2022. In order to meet this deadline, you must receive all shots of your preferred COVID-19 vaccine by December 20, 2021. To help illustrate the time it takes to be considered fully vaccinated against COVID-19 based on your preferred vaccination, QCC has created a Vaccination Timeline.  

For accommodations, employees and staff should visit Medicat and search for the accommodation form by clicking on the "Forms" tab, then clicking on "Employee Accommodation Form for COVID-19.” 

Print out the form, complete and sign it, and then upload the form into Medicat by clicking on the "Upload" tab at the top of the screen.  Select "COVID Accommodation Form" and upload.

Please Note: The accommodation form must be fully completed, in order to be reviewed. Forms that are missing information will not be reviewed.  Each request will be dealt with on an individual basis, through an interactive discussion.

If an employee is unable to access Medicat, please email covid19 [at] qcc.mass.edu.  

As always, thank you for your hard work and commitment to our students.

Good morning,

Today I stand in solidarity with my community college presidents in seeking to increase the health and safety of our students, faculty and staff.

In light of the ongoing public health concerns and current guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), we will require all students, faculty and staff to be fully vaccinated by January 2022. Only students who wish to register solely for courses that do not require any in-person components and who do not plan to come to campus for any reason will not be required to provide proof of vaccination.

The number of new cases of COVID-19 across the Commonwealth in unvaccinated populations is continuing to increase and our most vulnerable are the greatest risk.

The pandemic has disproportionally affected low-income communities and people of color, furthering the economic divide that exists in our society. Many of our students have suffered great hardships and continue to suffer, yet they still persevere in their goal of a better future through higher education.

I am incredibly proud to be a part of the QCC family and am continually amazed at all we have accomplished together. In these unprecedented times, our college community has rallied together in a show of solidarity for our students. We transitioned to online quickly at the onset of the pandemic, expanded our outreach to communities in need, and increased our support services. 

Our number one goal is the safety of our college community, while ensuring vaccination status is not a barrier to students in their quest for a higher education. I believe we can do this with everyone’s help and I thank you all in advance for your support and commitment to our students.

In the coming weeks we will be offering more information on the vaccine requirement process, on-campus vaccine clinics, and other information as it becomes available.

Please watch for more information and I encourage you to read the statement from all 15 community college presidents below.

“During the last 18 months, the Massachusetts Community Colleges have prioritized the health and safety of our communities while also recognizing that many of our students have been disproportionally impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic. While a significant number of students, faculty, and staff are already vaccinated or are in the process of becoming vaccinated, the 15 colleges are seeking to increase the health and safety of the learning and working environment in light of the ongoing public health concerns and current guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

With the number of new cases of COVID-19 across the Commonwealth in unvaccinated populations, the increased access and availability of vaccines in the Commonwealth, the Food & Drug Administration’s full and pending approval of available vaccines, and CDC guidance that the COVID-19 vaccine has been proven to be extremely safe and highly effective at preventing infection, severe disease, hospitalization, and death, the Presidents of all 15 Massachusetts

Community Colleges announced today that they will require students, faculty and staff to be fully vaccinated by January 2022.

Students who seek to register for courses that do not include any in-person component, and who do not plan to come on campus for any reason for the Spring 2022 semester, will not be required to provide documentation of vaccination.

As participants in the White House’s COVID-19 College Vaccine Challenge, the Massachusetts Community Colleges will continue to make vaccine clinics available on site. Further, the Massachusetts Community Colleges are committed to ensuring vaccination status is not a barrier to students and will continue offering a range of virtual learning opportunities and services. This vaccine requirement is aimed at ensuring the safest learning and working environment possible for the more than 135,000 students we educate and train each year as well as our staff and faculty. Additional details about implementation will be forthcoming.”

Dear QCC Family,

Our Fall 2021 semester begins in just a few weeks on September 7 with our All College Day celebration. Classes begin on September 8. We are excited to provide courses on campus this Fall, and look forward to the return of in-person student life, academic, and athletic activities.

We are cognizant of the nationwide spread of the COVID-19 Delta variant and the challenges it is causing in many communities throughout the country. While most of Massachusetts and our community are not in the CDC’s designated highest level  areas of transmission, our community is an area of substantial transmission. QCC is committed to implementing protocols that provide a safe environment in which we can work and learn. We continue to communicate with local, State, and Federal health agencies to receive up-to-date, accurate information and guidance to help inform our decisions.

The following safety protocols are effective immediately:

Face Coverings

  • Face coverings are required indoors at all QCC Campus and Satellite locations. (currently in effect)
  • Faculty, staff, students and visitors are required to bring and wear their own face coverings.
  • Face coverings are available to all employees, students, and visitors who are in need of a face covering and unable to bring their own.
  • Contact Campus Police dispatch at 508.854.4221 for assistance.
  • Face Coverings are available between 8 a.m.-10 p.m. Monday through Friday. (Please note that the face coverings provided from Public Safety are in limited supply so please only request one if you have no other means in which to secure your own.)
  • Every department that provides services directly to students should have a supply of face coverings available to offer to students, faculty or staff who may have forgotten or misplaced their face covering. Contact Campus Police Dispatch at 508.854.4221 to request face covering supplies.

Campus Wellness

  •  All faculty, staff, students and visitors must complete the COVID-19 Self-Checker prior to coming to campus. Individuals with any upper respiratory symptoms similar to a cold, flu or COVID-19 should not come on-site to any location.
  • Faculty, staff, or students who are staying home due to symptoms, concerns, or diagnoses of Coronavirus/COVID-19 should complete the Health and Safety Intake Form. This form will be kept strictly confidential, but you will be contacted by a representative from the College’s Emergency Management Team.

Classrooms

Every classroom will receive the following:

  • Hand sanitizer dispensers
  • Cleaning/disinfecting spray and paper towels (or disinfecting wipes)
  • Phone number and information to order refills are on every cleaning station
  •  Classrooms and public areas on campus will be cleaned more frequently. An additional “COVID shift” has been added to thoroughly clean classrooms at night.

Campus Bookstore

  • The QCC Campus Bookstore will use EZQ to schedule appointments for students to pick up books to limit the number of people in line at any given time.

Campus Facilities

  • Air conditioning and air handling/ventilation equipment has been upgraded with the highest level of filtration available as applicable, following CDC guidelines.
  • All offices, classrooms and college spaces will receive more frequent cleanings throughout the day and night. An additional “COVID shift” has been added to thoroughly clean classrooms at night
  • Hand sanitization stations have been added to all public offices, classrooms and bathrooms, as well as in high traffic locations throughout our main campus and all QCC locations
  • Updated signage reminding people that face coverings are required indoors and to maintain proper hygiene is posted throughout all QCC locations
  • Plexiglass stations are available upon request. Please email facilities [at] qcc.mass.edu (Facilities) to request assistance.

Campus Communications

  • At the start of the Fall semester, volunteers will walk around our main campus and all QCC locations to provide gentle reminders that face coverings are required while indoors. They will have face coverings available to share as needed. 
  • A new Web site, QCC.edu/HealthySafeCampus, is available to communicate information and updates as applicable.
  • The COVID-19 Testing Dashboard continues to be active and available to inform the College community of the number of individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19 and have been on campus.
  • Updated signage reminding people that face coverings are required indoors and to maintain proper hygiene is posted throughout all QCC locations

Vaccines

The 15 Massachusetts Community Colleges, including QCC, continue to strongly recommend that everyone get the COVID-19 vaccine. Vaccines are free, safe, effective and readily available at all retail pharmacies throughout the Commonwealth.

We must all work together to support one another and our students to ensure we have a safe and successful semester. We will continue to communicate updates and information as applicable. Visit QCC.edu/HealthySafeCampus and be sure to check your email regularly to stay informed.

We look forward to seeing you this Fall.

We recognize that many of you have been working on campus throughout the summer. Thank you for your efforts on behalf of our students. For those of you who have not worked from campus recently, welcome back.

As we make our safe return to campus next week and begin full in-person operations on August 2, we would like to provide the following update.

As you may know, the CDC has changed the face covering guidelines as a result of the spread of the COVID-19 Delta variant. Although most of Massachusetts and our community are not in the CDC’s designated high level of transmission area, in an abundance of caution we are proactively requiring that everyone (those who are vaccinated or unvaccinated) wear face coverings indoors in all campus and satellite locations until further notice. Due to the fast-changing nature of this new nationwide surge, we will continue to monitor the trends to reevaluate our safety protocols as we enter our Fall semester. 

As always, your health and the health of our community is of the utmost importance. The College has worked diligently to provide a safe environment in which to work and learn. Our efforts to support our return to campus include:

  • Upgraded air conditioning and air handling/ventilation equipment with the highest level of filtration available as applicable, following CDC guidelines
  • Continued cleaning of all offices and college spaces throughout the day and night
  • Installed additional hand sanitization stations in all offices and bathrooms, as well as throughout the main campus and all QCC locations
  • Updated signage reminding people to maintain good hygiene and wear face coverings are posted throughout all QCC locations
  • Developed a new Web site, QCC.edu/HealthySafeCampus to communicate information and updates as applicable.
  • Face coverings will be available to all employees, students, and visitors who are in need of a face covering and unable to bring their own.
    • Contact Campus Police dispatch at 508.854.4221 for assistance.
    • Face Coverings are available between 8 a.m.-10 p.m. Monday through Friday. (Please note that the face coverings provided from Public Safety are in limited supply so please only request one if you have no other means in which to secure your own.)

Vaccines

We continue to strongly recommend that everyone get the COVID-19 vaccine. Vaccines are safe and effective and readily available at all retail pharmacies throughout the Commonwealth.

  • The 15 Massachusetts community colleges are not mandating COVID-19 vaccines  for students, faculty, or staff at this time
  • It is essential to meet the needs of all of our students
    • They are often from the communities hit hardest by this pandemic
    • They face disproportionate access to the COVID-19 vaccine
  • Creating additional barriers for our students would go against our critically important mission of open access for all.

Read the Statement from community college presidents to learn more, and visit the CDC for updated information on vaccinations.

We are all in this together. We will continue to monitor the impact of COVID-19 in our community, and will continue to follow the guidance of medical experts as we make decisions regarding our return to on-campus learning this Fall. If you have any questions or concerns regarding your return to full-time work on campus, please speak with your supervisor.

We look forward to seeing you next week.

QCC President and Vice Presidents

A few important items to note:

  • Effective July 6, Enrollment, Student Services, Advising and the QCC Bookstore will begin offering in-person services on-campus.
  • College employees may be asked to return to the office full-time as early as July 6. This return to in-person operation is primarily focused on the Welcome Center and Student Success Center.
  • As of July 6, all campus buildings will be open, resuming normal business hours. Employees will no longer be required to notify Campus Police or Facilities prior to being on-site. Additionally, the self-checker will no longer be required.
  • Social distancing and the wearing of face coverings are strongly recommended for those who are on-site and are not fully immunized with the COVID-19 vaccine or are immunocompromised.
  • The target date for all employees to fully return to campus is August 2. Managers will work with employees who have not been on campus to plan for them to gradually return to their on-site offices between July 6 – August 2.
  • All NUP/AFSCME/MCCC employees are expected to be fully back to in-person operations no later than August 2. Should you have questions or concerns, please speak to your supervisor.
  • More information will be shared as it becomes available.

Welcome Back Wyvern nation!