This digest is a compilation of important COVID-19 related news and updates for students, faculty and staff on the Danforth Campus. We’ll send this to our community as needed to share new information, including important steps members of the Danforth Campus community must take to help protect the health and well-being of our community. Thank you for your attention to these communications, and for your continued support of our response efforts.
Return travelers must continue to be screened
All students, faculty and staff who are planning to return to the university following travel from locations with an elevated risk of COVID-19 exposurewithin the past 14 days, or who have been in contact with anyone with a confirmed case of COVID-19 or known exposure to the virus, are required to contact university health services for screening prior to coming on campus.
Danforth Campus students and employees must email firstname.lastname@example.org for screening and clearance to return. DO NOT RETURN TO CAMPUS UNTIL YOU HAVE RECEIVED A RESPONSE WITH NEXT STEPS.
There are several restrictions in place to limit the number of people who are visiting community spaces at the same time.
- Academic buildings – Starting at 5 p.m. on Friday, March 20, exterior doors of all buildings on the Danforth, West, North and South Campuses will be locked 24/7, until at least April 6, 2020. The end date will be modified as the situation evolves. Employees will be able to access their building(s) using their WashU ID. Employees who are not required to be on campus to perform their work duties should limit their time in university buildings. Information about students’ access to academic buildings will be provided by the Danforth schools. Washington University Police Department (WUPD) will adjust its patrols as needed for the security of campus buildings and spaces.
- Dining Services – Dining locations will be open on a limited schedule for carry-out only. Mobile ordering is available. Check the Dining Services website for locations and hours.
- Sumers Recreation Center – Closed until further notice.
- University libraries – Most locations will remain open with limited hours and access through this Friday, March 20, and then will be closed through at least Monday, April 6. Note: The Becker Medical Library and Brown School Library are not adhering to this schedule. For more information, visit the Libraries website.
Essential departments such as Habif Health and Wellness Center, WUPD, Residential Life and Dining Services will remain open.
It is completely understandable that members of the community will have conversations and share information as you hear about possible cases of COVID-19. This is an uncertain and stressful time and it’s good to remain in contact with friends and colleagues. At the same time, it is extremely important that we are all very careful about how we communicate with each other, both personally and in the course of doing our work.
Please keep the following guidance in mind:
- Sharing unconfirmed information or personal details about specific individuals can cause harm by creating panic. Please be cautious about sharing this type of information in your personal interactions.
- Any work-related communications about COVID-19 must be approved by a dean or department head before distribution. This is important in order to ensure that accurate information is being shared, and to head off rumors or speculation, which can be disruptive to the university’s response.
- If you have information that you would like to report regarding possible cases of COVID-19 or potential exposure to members of the university community, please call 314-935-8300 or 888-234-2863 and select from the menu options.
As Chancellor Martin shared with faculty and staff in Monday’s communication, based upon the guidance received from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the university is shifting its operations. All departments must drop to “alternate operations” by March 23. The only employees who should be on campus are those who are required to perform essential work that requires a physical presence. No one else should report to their place of work. Undergraduates who have not been approved for a late stay in the residence halls should not be on campus at all.
The shift in operations does not impact the start of online instruction on March 23.
Protect your health
In order to slow the spread of COVID-19, we are asking you to follow important guidance from the CDC:
- Stay home. We strongly encourage you to stay home whenever possible.
- Avoid unnecessary travel, shopping trips and social visits with friends and family. Do not gather in groups of 10 or more.
- Avoid eating or drinking at bars, restaurants and food courts. Students, use drive-thru, carry-out or delivery options if you are not using Dining Services.
- Practice good hygiene.
- Wash your hands for 20 seconds frequently or use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
- Avoid touching your face.
- Sneeze or cough into a tissue or the inside of your elbow.
- Disinfect frequently used items and surfaces as much as possible.
- Practice social distancing. Stay at least six feet away from any other person.
It is extremely important that everyone is following these instructions to keep our campus safe. We’re depending on everyone to help keep our risk of exposure as low as possible.
Human Resources updates
The Danforth Service Award Ceremony and Staff Day activities scheduled for May 18 have been canceled. Human Resources will make plans to celebrate our incredibly valuable staff at another time, when we can all safely be together.
HR will be in touch with management and service award recipients about honoring service milestones. Recipients will receive a personalized yearbook and certificate, and have the option to select a gift of their choice online to mark this special time in their career.
Other university events
We are following guidance from St. Louis regional leaders who have placed limits on the number of people who may gather in one space. Many events have been canceled or postponed. Contact event organizers or check the university calendar for updates on specific events.
We appreciate your ongoing support and cooperation as we manage this unprecedented situation. Please continue to visit the university’s COVID-19website for the latest information.