Health and Safety Plan for Reopening La Roche University (Updated 03/01/22)
For 2021-22 academic year, La Roche University will continue to adhere to COVID-19 safety measures that align with guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention and the Allegheny County Health Department.
This plan details key aspects of La Roche’s on-campus learning and operations effective Aug. 20, 2021.
Updates to this plan are ongoing and will be noted.
Based on guidance from state and federal public health authorities, La Roche will require all enrolled student-athletes and resident students to be vaccinated for COVID-19, effective this fall semester.
The University will accept medical and religious exemptions, including ethical and moral beliefs. Resident students and athletes who want to file an exemption must submit their waivers before the start of the semester. Visit my.laroche.edu/housingportal to complete and submit your exemption form.
While not required for commuters, we strongly encourage all students to be vaccinated for COVID-19. Please consider getting vaccinated before the Fall 2021 semester. Once you are vaccinated, please show proof of immunization by uploading your COVID-19 Vaccination Card to this secure site on the La Roche intranet. This information will help the University determine the vaccination rate on campus.
For unvaccinated students who test positive, all associated costs such as for testing, quarantine and/or isolation and medical treatment will be their sole responsibility. Students who must leave prior to the end of semester due to COVID-19 sickness, and who have not provided the University proof of vaccination, will not be eligible for refunds on housing and dining fees.
For Resident Students
In order to provide proof of your COVID-19 vaccine, you must submit a photo of your Vaccination Card to the Housing Portal. Follow the instructions below:
- Visit my.laroche.edu/housingportal.
- Log in to your housing Self Service with your University username and password.
- Select Applications on the left side of the screen.
- Click COVID-19 Vaccination Record (Fall 2021).*
- The website will prompt you to sign a COVID-19 vaccination acknowledgement form. You also will need to answer a series of questions.
- Upload the photo of your Vaccination Card using this file name: COVID_19_Vaccine_Card.
- Click Submit.
*If you do not see the COVID-19 Vaccination Record (Fall 2021) option on your Self Service screen, or if you have any additional questions, please contact the Office of Housing and Residence Life: 412-536-1195 or email@example.com.
Contact the Student IT Help Desk at 412-847-2300 if you do not know your La Roche log-in credentials.
In order to provide proof of a COVID-19 vaccine, commuter students must upload a photo of their own Vaccination Card via the form to this secure page on the La Roche intranet.
MONITORING AND SURVEILLANCE
As the pandemic continues to shift due to new variants, monitoring and surveillance are crucial to the health and safety of our campus community.
Students, faculty and staff who develop COVID-19 symptoms will be referred to their primary health care provider as appropriate to discuss options for testing and necessary treatment. Centralized outpatient testing is offered at various UPMC locations. The UPMC Southside testing facility is the closest in proximity to La Roche University.
When notified of a confirmed case on campus, the Emergency Response Team will coordinate with local health officials to determine the course of action.
Unvaccinated students are responsible for all fees associated with testing. You must send COVID-19 test results to the Chief Pandemic Safety Officer prior to move-in.
Throughout the semester, random testing may be required for resident students and athletes who are not vaccinated. Any fees associated with testing will be the responsibility of the student.
La Roche will require unvaccinated students to undergo COVID-19 testing 3-5 days prior to move-in. Unvaccinated students are responsible for all fees associated with testing. You must send COVID-19 test results to the Chief Pandemic Safety Officer prior to move-in.
Those awaiting test results or who have had exposure to individuals who tested positive will be asked to quarantine. On-campus students who live within two hours from campus are to return home to quarantine. The University has limited private rooms set aside for quarantine when necessary. Unvaccinated students who require a private room during quarantine must pay a room differential. Off-campus students will quarantine at their residence or home. Employees will quarantine at home.
Those who are vaccinated will not need to quarantine if exposed to a positive case.
In the event of an outbreak or resurgence of the virus, the University will assess and adjust operations in a manner that is consistent with the current and evolving situation. This process will be executed in accordance with the University’s existing Emergency Response Plan. An appropriate course of action ultimately will be based upon preventing further spread of the virus and protecting lives.
If notified of a confirmed case on campus, La Roche will work with local health officials to determine whether a temporary suspension of two to five days of in-person instruction is warranted. At that time, all areas will be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected per CDC guidance. In order to determine when routine operations can resume on campus, the Emergency Response Team will coordinate with local public health officials.
The campus community will be notified via email when a confirmed positive COVID-19 case is determined among students, faculty and staff. The names of those who test positive will be kept confidential.
- Vaccinated guests are permitted in the vaccinated areas of residence halls.
- Visitors and vendors must wear a face covering or disposable mask in all public indoor settings on campus, regardless of vaccination status.
La Roche University will become mask optional beginning Saturday, March 19, five days after the return from Spring Break. Over the past few years, spikes in cases of COVID-19 at La Roche tend to occur immediately following breaks. Since many of our students travel domestically and internationally, it is therefore important to continue to wear masks for an additional five days. Assuming this approach works, masks will become optional on March 19.
Even though Allegheny County is categorized at the “low community level,” people can wear a mask based on personal preference and personal level of risk. People with symptoms, a positive test or exposure to someone with COVID-19 should also wear a mask.
Please note that faculty or staff may still require a mask during their class and/or program. As such, students and employees will be required to comply and should therefore have a mask with them at all times.
Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds after public place exposure, after touching an item or surface that may be frequently touched by other people, after blowing your nose, coughing, sneezing, and before preparing or eating food. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol when soap and water are not available. Use available hand sanitizers in all classrooms, labs and public areas.
Follow proper sneeze or cough etiquette by using a tissue or in the inside of your elbow. Used tissues should be thrown in the trash and hands washed immediately.
If you take your temperature and the reading is above 100.9 degrees or above, stay home and monitor symptoms. If symptoms exist after 24 hours, call your health care provider or visit the UPMC urgent care center for further evaluation.
In addition to our pre-existing protocols, La Roche will continue to add additional protocols to clean and disinfect high-touch surfaces routinely in accordance with CDC guidelines. The main cleaning product for all areas will be 3M 40L disinfectant. Below are COVID-19 cleaning protocols for a variety of La Roche’s buildings.
Before move-in all residence hall rooms will be thoroughly cleaned and disinfected. Walls will be patched and painted, and the door will be locked and taped until resident move-in. During the semester, the residence halls’ common areas will be cleaned twice daily.
High-use restrooms will be cleaned four times daily and twice on weekends; others will be cleaned twice daily. Antimicrobial soap and paper towels will be in bathrooms with trash cans placed by the doors.
Hand-wipe stations for self-use will be available in common areas, including computer labs, the dining hall, Zappala Campus Center Square, Wright Library, fitness centers and weight rooms. Additional stations with hand sanitizer, gloves and masks will be at entry/exit points and multiple other locations. High-use touch areas will be cleaned four times daily and twice on weekends.. Shields will be installed in public office spaces, classroom podiums and where applicable.
La Roche Facilities Management and an industrial disinfection contractor will treat areas for COVID-19 as needed.
GUIDELINES FOR RESIDENTIAL HOUSING
Unvaccinated students who are exposed to COVID will be required to quarantine for 10 days. Limited rooms with private bathrooms are set aside on campus for students who need to self-quarantine or self-isolate throughout the semester because of positive COVID-19 tests or exposure to individuals who tested positive. Unvaccinated students who require a private room during quarantine must pay a room differential. Students needing to quarantine or isolate who live within a two-hour drive of campus, and are able to return home, are encouraged to do so.
HOUSING CONTRACT ACKNOWLEDGMENT ADDENDUM
The Housing Contract Acknowledgement Addendum highlights the
updated policies and procedures in place for unvaccinated residential students
for the 2021-2022 academic year. Unvaccinated students are required to review
and agree to the addendum in order to live on campus.
Policies highlighted in the Addendum include, but are not limited to, the
Unvaccinated students are required to wear a mask or face covering while inside any residential facility, unless specifically in their assigned room. This includes hallways, lounge spaces, laundry facilities, vending areas, stairwells, elevators, offices in Peters or Bold Hall, and any other part of the residential facilitie
Students who violate the COVID-19 policy will face disciplinary proceedings and may be removed from housing.
To promote the health and safety of our residential community, the University will implement the following guidelines regarding guests and visitation.
- Vaccinated students do not need to wear masks in the residence halls.
- Vaccinated students may have guests that are vaccinated.
- Vaccinated students may not visit the unvaccinated areas of the residence halls.
- May not visit other residence halls or go on other floors in the building, that would include lounges in other areas. The only exception is the laundry room.
- May not have non-resident guests visit their room.
- May not have more than two additional students from the floor visiting at any one time.
- Unvaccinated students must wear a mask in public areas of the residence halls including hallways, elevators, stairways and lounges.
Masks are required indoors for everyone on Move-In Day. There will be no limit on the number of people who can assist in moving someone in.
Housing contracts may be canceled until the add/drop date without penalty. After Aug. 31, a $400 cancellation fee will be assessed in addition to forfeiting the housing deposit and paying any pro-rated room and board costs. Please note: financial aid may be affected if housing status changes.
Face-to-face instruction will resume at full capacity for the fall 2021 semester on Aug. 23. In-person classes will be augmented by a wide range of online courses.
La Roche will accommodate students who need to remain at a distance and are unable to take fully online classes. Students who require a hybrid approach must apply to the Office of Student Academic Support Services for Zoom-based instruction. To be approved, students will agree to:
- Appropriate Zoom-classroom behaviors (e.g. camera use)
- Affirm their access to acceptable Wi-fi and technology
- Supply documentation to demonstrate personal need for the hi-flex option
Regardless of the modality of instruction, La Roche’s educational programs meet the University’s academic standards and afford students the opportunity to earn the credits necessary to receive their degrees. Students should be aware of the tuition charged by the University; they also should be aware they are not entitled to a refund or an adjustment of tuition or costs, regardless of whether some or all of the education programs are delivered remotely or in person for all or a portion of any academic term.
La Roche will follow a traditional academic calendar. View the online academic calendar
to see full semester course dates, accelerated sessions, add/drop periods and graduation application deadlines.
DINING HALL OPERATIONS
La Roche’s food service partner, SAGE Dining, is committed to providing a variety of nutritious and appealing meals in a cost-effective manner. Students will experience a welcoming environment with visually enticing foods. SAGE Dining is incorporating safe tableside practices at catering events, and keeping product availability and cost in mind for menu design for the fall semester. Meeting student needs in this environment will include various levels of services and enhanced communications.
Food service will remain fully focused on safety and sanitation.
- SAGE Dining Employees
- All employees will be outfitted with personal protective equipment at all times.
- All employees will complete ServSafe COVID-19 training before returning to work.
- Employees are required to disclose a positive COVID-19 test or exposure to a person who tests positive.
- All employees will work in a safe manner and follow COVID-19 guidelines.
Food services will meet regulatory guidelines, and adjustments will be made to ensure the safety of guests.
- Meals will be available for takeout during regular operational hours. Available only with participation in the LRU Go Green reusable container program. One box per guest.
- During operational hours, one SAGE team member will be dedicated to ongoing cleaning and sanitizing of tables and frequently touched surfaces.
- Hand-sanitizing stations will be available throughout the dining hall.
Touchless payment is available through the kioski and the Touch of SAGE app.
All student clubs, organizations activities and events will resume at 100 percent capacity, and masks will be required for vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals at all indoor gatherings.
- The Kerr Fitness & Sports Center hours are:
- Sunday: 3 p.m. to midnight.
- Monday-Thursday: 8:30 a.m. to midnight.
- Friday: 8:30 a.m. to 10 p.m.
- Saturday: 10 a.m. to 8 p.m.
- Masks are required inside the Fitness Center and Weight Room at all times, regardless of vaccination status.
- All non-student athlete activities must be scheduled within the operating hours of the facilities.
- Only one entrance will be available at the Fitness Center.
- Each administrative shift will have specific cleaning and sanitation protocols.
- Each team will designate three individuals (must include a coach) to be the COVID Team Unit to ensure cleaning before and after practice, and to complete the screening before practices and games.
- Vaccinations are required for all student-athletes and coaches.
- La Roche will follow all NCAA and AMCC policies in regard to the sports season for 2021-2022.
- Spectators are permitted at athletic events. Masks are required at all indoor events, regardless of vaccination status.
The precautions and scenarios outlined in this plan are designed to mitigate risks while maximizing safety.
La Roche will move forward, together, with consideration and concern for the wellbeing of everyone.