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COVID-19 Updates & Resources

COVID-19 Updates & Resources

 

 

May 5, 2020

 

Western's executive team has put a lot of thought into the next three months and with the assistance of our Board of Regents we are ready to move forward with a plan.  As with anything COVID-19 related, this is the plan for right now and could potentially be amended.  We appreciate how flexible each and every one of you have been and we will all need to continue to embrace this mindset.  Western's leadership is all in agreement that the safety of our employees and students far supersedes the desire to get back to "normal." 
 

May 4 to May 28 - Employees will continue to telework. Campus will remain closed to the public.  Summer hours (7:30 am - 4:30 pm Monday through Thursday) will begin on Monday, May 18.  This is one week earlier than initially planned.

June 1 to July 2 - Employees will return to normal working hours (7:30 am - 4:30 pm) in shifts consisting of Monday/Wednesday and Tuesday/Thursday schedules.  Department supervisors will stagger shifts so each office will be staffed Monday through Thursday. Staff will continue to telework when not on campus.  Campus will remain closed to the public.

July 6 – All employees will return to a normal work schedule 7:30 am – 4:30 pm. Campus will be open to the public on a limited basis (scheduled appointments and limited outside guests/customers).

August 3 – The campus will be fully operational with potential limitations (large gatherings, social distancing, etc.) based upon guidance from the City of Altus and State Of Oklahoma.

April 17, 2020

 

Western Oklahoma State College has submitted an application to take part in the CARES Act.  We are currently working with the Oklahoma State Regents for Higher Education and our counterparts across the state to determine a fair and equitable way to disperse funds to students when they are available.  As soon as we have more information regarding this matter we will share via student emails and the COVID-19 Updates link on the Western home page.
 
The Business Office has processed credit adjustments for Room & Board for the Spring semester.  If these adjustments resulted in a refundable credit balance, then the credit balance was refunded to the student.  Please check CampusConnect for up-to-date information regarding your student account balance.

April 9, 2020

 

Graduation
With a heavy heart, the decision has been made to cancel Western's regularly scheduled 2020 nursing pinning ceremony and graduation. All of us on campus completely understand the frustration this may cause to our graduates. However, our campus's health and student success is our utmost priority. Unfortunately, COVID-19 has caused turmoil for many - closed businesses, cancelled weddings, etc.   It is our hope to provide our graduates with an opportunity to celebrate their accomplishments at some time in the future.  However, with all the uncertainties in the world we do not want to make a promise that we are unable to keep.  We hope that you understand that this decision was not taken lightly, and the goal is to maintain public health and do our part. Of course, we are proud of every single student and their accomplishments, and are excited to continue to cheer each of you on as you go out into the world!  When the college is able to open to the public, students who have purchased a cap and gown may return them to the Student Store for a full refund.
 
Fall/Summer 2020 Enrollment:
Summer enrollment will open April 20.   Information regarding virtual placement testing will be posted soon, as well as a process for students needing assistance with enrollment.   The decision has been made to offer the summer session in a completely virtual format as there is a strong possibility the campus may still be closed when summer school begins on May 26.  Courses listed as online will remain 100% online.  However, courses listed with a meeting date and time (8:00 - 9:30 am MTWR for example) will be taught live and students will use ZOOM to attend those courses virtually.  Fall enrollment will open June 8.  This will allow us to focus on summer enrollment and placement testing and still provide excellent service to all of our students.  The schedule is available at https://www.wosc.edu/index.php?page=Class-Schedule 

March 30, 2020

 

Western Oklahoma State College (as of March 30)

Employees: Effective March 30, 2020, Western implemented a remote work format for the majority of employees. In consultation with supervisors, employees will perform their work from home as long as remote work does not compromise college operations. For employees who have job functions that cannot be performed at home, supervisors will work with employees to develop individualized plans. In general, individuals are expected to be available during normal hours, regardless of location.

Public: The Western campus is closed to the public. All scheduled activities have been cancelled until further notice.

Students: Western has moved exclusively to virtual delivery for the remainder of the spring 2020 semester. Students are encouraged to communicate regularly with their instructors and make use of a wide variety of resources that are available online (wosc.edu/covid19). Two computer labs will be available for student use and will be open Wednesday, April 1 for WOSC students only. Hours of operation will be Wednesdays and Thursdays, 9 a.m. – 7 p.m. Enter through the HLC sliding door entrance on the south side of the main building. A maximum of 8 students will be allowed in the lab at one time. WOSC students must bring student ID or other photo ID with proof of enrollment and must check in with the attendant at the HLC Help Desk. No children will be allowed and please do not come if you have a cough, fever, or
have potentially been exposed to COVID-19. 

Activities: All college-sponsored events and activities are suspended until further notice. Spring sports competitions and practices have been canceled in light of recommendations by NJCAA and NIRA.

Housing: Student housing at Western is no longer available for students. Those students who have not returned to campus following Spring Break must make an appointment with Jimmy Poe (jimmy.poe@wosc.edu or 580-477-7945) before  returning to collect their personal belongings. Students are limited to bringing one individual to help them move. The Business Office will process pro-rated refunds based in the student’s account status through the remainder of the spring semester for room & board payments.

Commencement: At the present time, no decision has been made on graduation or nursing pinning.

Travel: Travel for all college-related business or academic purposes (regardless of prepayment) is suspended unless such travel is deemed absolutely critical to the college and approved in advance by the Office of the President.

Fall/Summer 2020 Enrollment: The early enrollment opening date of March 26 has been postponed. During these unprecedented times, our focus is serving our current students and ensuring they have the tools necessary to succeed in a virtual environment. Information regarding summer and fall enrollment will be made available at a later date.

March 20, 2020

 

We continue to work together during this challenging time to make informed decisions to protect our entire campus community and do our part to prevent the spread of COVID-19. Nothing is more important than the health and well-being of our Western family, and we are proud to see the Western family pulling together at this critical juncture to support and encourage one another through the uncertainty.

General Operations

Even though we have already taken extraordinary precautions and measures, we must do more as the situation continues to evolve. The most recent White House and CDC guidelines for social distancing have made it apparent that we must now take additional steps to do our part to flatten the curve of the COVID-19 outbreak.

Today the decision was made to close the campus to the public effective Monday, March 23, 2020. All faculty, staff and administration will report to duty unless arrangements have been made with your supervisor. Sometime before lunch, all doors to the campus (except the automatic HLC door) will be locked, prohibiting the public from entering. After that point, we are asking that everyone enter through this single entry.

Priorities

Our #1 priority is serving the students that are currently enrolled. Working together with faculty and staff as well as our community partners, we are committed to ensuring our students can complete their academic goals at Western. Therefore, as a campus, the following three items will be our priorities during the week of March 23.

#1 - Faculty will make all necessary preparations to provide excellent virtual instruction that will begin on March 30.

#2 - Staff will continue to serve students as needed and make preparations to work remotely should the need arise to close campus completely.

#3 - Physical Plant will work tirelessly to provide a safe environment for all employees.

Summer/Fall Enrollment

In an effort to focus on current students and do everything possible to help them achieve their goals for the current semester, summer and fall enrollment will be postponed.

Food Service

We have negotiated with Great Western Dining and will be able to provide a wonderful perk for our employees beginning Monday, March 23, 2020. Breakfast, lunch and dinner will be available for $2 per meal on a take-out basis only. Breakfast will be available 8:00 - 9:00 a.m., lunch from 12:00 - 1:00 p.m., and dinner from 4:30 - 5:30 p.m.

Purchasing

Effective immediately, there is a freeze on all non-essential purchasing. Grant programs will be excluded from this purchasing freeze. Please consult with your supervisor before making any purchases.

General Guidance

All those returning to campus should continue to exercise social distancing. As recommended by the CDC – wash your hands thoroughly and often for at least 20 seconds; cover coughs and sneezes with your sleeve/elbow; avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth; and clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces. It is imperative that we minimize contact and proximity. Strive for no more than 10 people in a confined work or customer space, with at least 6 feet between individuals. If you do not feel well due to any illness, use existing sick leave, stay home, and seek medical attention as necessary. Absolutely do not come to work if you have a fever or a cough.

 
Together, we will get through this. We are a family. We are strong. We are WESTERN!

March 17, 2020

 
To ensure the health and safety of Western Oklahoma State College students, staff, and faculty, spring break will be extended through the week of March 23, 2020 for students. Faculty and staff will use March 23 - March 27 to finalize plans for a transition to virtual education for a minimum of two weeks. Additional issues surrounding clinicals, labs, and campus-resource dependent courses will be addressed through their respective departments.

Based on the recommendation from the CDC to limit gatherings of more than 50 people, Western will suspend all on and off campus activities and events until April 6, 2020. Although the campus will resume operation on March 23, 2020, we are requesting that individuals attend to college related business via the phone or internet. Absolutely no children will be allowed on campus. Employees with childcare issues should discuss options with their respective supervisor.
 
We do have a handful of students that were not able to leave for spring break and they will remain in the dorms. We will be making sure all their needs are met. Doyle Jencks and his physical plant crew will be working very hard to ensure our campus is cleaned from top to bottom when we return from break and those heightened cleaning and disinfecting efforts will be ongoing.
 
Employees should return to work on March 23, 2020 unless you are sick or quarantined. If you are experiencing any flu-like symptoms, you should remain home, notify your supervisor, and not report to work. Please contact your immediate supervisor for options available to accommodate specific situations such as compromised immune systems. Written approval for accommodations is required.

Please know that we are working diligently to balance action steps with updates as they become available; the situation evolves rapidly, and we are working closely with the experts and our peers to ensure we make sound, logical, and well-timed decisions. We appreciate your patience as we determine, as a team, the best decisions for Western Oklahoma State College as a whole. Thank you for your patience and cooperation.

Schedule:

March 16 – March 27: Campus closed to students for spring break.

March 23: All healthy staff, faculty and administrators report and campus operations resume.

March 23 – March 27: Western faculty will transition all classes to virtual delivery.

March 30: All Western face-to-face classes resume in a virtual delivery format for an initial period of two weeks.

 

See the CDC website for additional information about COVID-19.