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Coronavirus (COVID-19) FAQs

 

Important: Currently, there are 0 cases of the coronavirus (COVID-19) recorded on campus.

The College will continue providing updates here, via email, and Facebook or Twitter.

In order to keep everyone informed, we’ve compiled a list of frequently asked questions regarding the coronavirus (COVID-19) and its effect on College operations.

Please read through the FAQs before contacting the College, as they will provide a more timely/immediate answer.

If you cannot find the answers to your questions, please call 920-748-8351 or email [email protected] The College’s Response Team will reply as soon as possible.


Q: Will classes be online or in person starting on March 30?

A: All classes will move to an online format, effective Monday, March 30. The Dean of Faculty will email all students with general instructions, and instructors will contact their students about how to proceed. Some classes may not be able to translate to an online format. We will work with these individual situations to find possible solutions.

Additional resources to aid in this transition will be posted on the student tab of the my.ripon.edu portal.

Q: Why is the college moving its classes to a virtual environment and asking students not to return after spring break?

A: These actions are being taken in the interest of the health and safety of our own community, as well as the wider community, as we try to minimize the spread of coronavirus. We are using national, state and local health authorities as guideposts for our decision-making.

Q: Is the semester going to be extended on the account of the additional spring break week?

A: The duration of the spring semester is still under consideration. Updates will be shared when they are available.

Q: Does Ripon College have laptops to loan students for use at home? Does Ripon College plan to support students without internet access at home?

A: Only if you have technology or internet needs at home, please fill out the survey here by 8 am on Friday, March 20.

Q: My home is on a different time zone than my course. How can I participate in course activities virtually given the time difference?

A: Students should communicate with their professors about the time zone difference and planning for any virtual group class meetings. It is likely that some class activities and assignments will be designed so that students can complete them on their own schedules, rather than going online as a group.

Q: I’d like to stay at Ripon during the spring semester. Can I do that?

A: Students wishing to remain on campus beyond Monday, March 23 must fill out a NEW request to stay in the residence halls by 8 am Friday, March 20 via this survey. Permission will only be granted to those who can demonstrate extraordinary circumstances. Students granted permission to remain on campus will be notified by noon on Friday, March 20. Students who are granted permission will be relocated from their current residence hall room and will not have access to full dining services.

Q: When can students return to Ripon College to retrieve any items left behind?

A:

In order to minimize the contact between people and maintain appropriate social distancing, students are strongly encouraged to leave the personal belongings in place until a later date. Please contact Mark Nicklaus ([email protected]) if you wish to keep belongings in your residence hall room.

If you are on campus and wish to move out immediately (Wednesday, March 18/ Thursday, March 19), you can drop your keys in the collection box in your residence hall. 

If you are not on campus and do not wish to leave your belongings in your room, you must comply with the following guidelines if you wish to move your personal belongings this week:

  1. Students with the last names beginning with A-G may move out on Saturday, March 21.

  2. Students with the last names H-O may move out on Sunday, March 22.

  3. Students with the last names P-Z may move out on Monday, March 23.

We will allow only a certain number of people inside the residence halls at one time. Students are asked to minimize the number of people helping them remove their belongings and take all appropriate precautions and social distancing measures while inside the building.

Willmore Center will be open for athletes who wish to clear out their lockers and return equipment and uniforms from Saturday-Monday.

Q: Will students receive a refund for room and board?

A: We are awaiting guidance from the federal government regarding appropriate procedures for possible refunds for room and board for the second half of spring semester. No decisions about refunds have been made at this time.

Q: What is going to happen with large college events/gatherings like Catalyst Day and Awards Convocation (April 22) and commencement (May 17)?

A: All public events for the month of April are canceled or postponed. Catalyst Day (April 22) may occur in an online format. No decision has yet been made about commencement (May 17).

Q: I am a student-athlete at Ripon. What is happening with the spring sports season?

A: Per a decision by the Midwest Conference and the NCAA, all in-person athletically-related activities--including practices, competitions (both Conference and non-Conference), tournaments and championships--are canceled. Virtual engagement (e.g. video "chalktalks," distribution of and reporting on team workouts, etc.) is permitted per NCAA playing and practice season rules.

Q: What does the current situation mean for Ripon College employees?

A: All employees, other than key personnel from Student Life, Office of Information Technology, and Plant, should make arrangements to work from home until further notice. In-person meetings should be minimized and moved to online forums. OIT is working with individual faculty and staff to make sure that you have as much online access as possible to be able to do your work from home. If you require wifi and/or computer technology to do your job, please fill out the following survey.

We plan to retain all staff members during this extraordinary period of economic dislocation. Some staff whose regular workload has been significantly reduced due to the unique circumstances will be asked to perform other functions outside of their normal areas. Supervisors will be in touch with staff in the coming days for reassignments.

Q: How do I track my hours worked while employees are instructed to work from home?

A: If you are performing work tasks for the College, that time is considered hours worked. You will have distractions at home that you don’t have when working on campus. Short distractions do not require you to sign-out/sign-in.

If you are sick and not able to perform work tasks for the College, that time would be recorded as sick time. The same would hold true if you are caring for a family member.

If you are home-schooling for a period of time, you should not count time spent doing childcare as hours worked, but realize that you can work again later in the day even if it is outside the normal 8 – 5 work hours. We understand that these are unprecedented times, so please work with your direct supervisor to create a work schedule that takes into account your personal circumstances.

If you want to take the day to do other activities at home or in your neighborhood, just take a vacation day. Now is a chance to use vacation time that is difficult to use during normal spring time.

Q: What is the employee leave policy, and how does it relate to our current situation?

A: We are monitoring guidance from the federal and state government as it relates to protections provided to workers during these extenuating circumstances. Our current policies are listed below, but we may make changes to help accommodate our community’s needs.

Faculty members on full- or part-time contracts with at least one year of service are eligible for up to eight weeks of sick pay when absent for personal illness or certified disability. To activate this benefit, the eligible individual must contact the Dean of Faculty as soon as the need is known. This action is required of all faculty members when the time away from work duties during an academic semester will exceed one week.

Faculty members who have taught at the College for less than one year, currently teach less than 12 credits per year, or hold an adjunct position are not eligible for Paid Short-term Illness/Disability Leave. Such individuals may, however, qualify for unpaid leave, as required by law.

Staff can use accrued sick time for their own illness or for staying home with family members who cannot care for themselves. If sick time runs out, accrued vacation time and or floating holidays can also be used. During this pandemic period, negative balances in sick and vacation time will be allowed (your timecard won’t allow you to go into a negative balance for floating holidays).

Q: What if someone in my immediate household falls ill?

A: The College’s paid sick leave policy does cover care for sick immediate family members when they are unable to care for themselves. This policy can be found in the employee handbook. In the event a sick leave balance is exhausted, vacation time or floating holidays may also be utilized.

Q: Should I go to the doctor/ER/Urgent Care if I am not feeling well?

A: Call ahead!

The Ripon College Medical Plan will be implementing a telehealth plan. Please watch your email for more information as it becomes available. The College benefit guide and plan documents are found on the myRipon portal under the Employees tab/Benefits/Medical, Dental, Vision Insurance.

The current advice from health officials is to call your health provider if you have one, your local urgent care clinic, or—in a pinch— the local ER and describe your symptoms.

Please continue to monitor the WI Department of Health Services website and the CDC website for more specific instructions.
https://www.dhs.wisconsin.gov/covid-19/index.htm
https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/index.html

Q: I am feeling anxious about all of this information – is there someone I can talk to?

A: 1) Call or go on-line with the Ripon College Employee Assistant Program:
Standard Employee Assistance Program (EAP)
Call 888-293-6948
Go On-line: workhealthlife.com/Standard3
Available 24 hours a day, seven days a week. Free.

2) Call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255) if you are feeling overwhelmed with emotions such as sadness, depression, anxiety, or feel like wanting to harm yourself or others.

3) Call 911 if you feel like wanting to harm yourself or others.

Q: I am a student, and I suspect I may have the coronavirus. What do I do?

A: We ask that you call Health Services at 920-748-8141. For any call that needs to be made after hours, please call Ripon Medical Center at 920-748-3101. A healthcare provider will give you instructions on how to proceed.

Q: What happens next?

A: The Ripon College Response Team is doing their best to provide guidance and support to the college community. We are monitoring the situation throughout each day. We are not alone and can seek wisdom and shared best practices from other colleges, businesses and the government. We ask for your patience and thoughtfulness. Please monitor your ripon.edu email for new information and check www.ripon.edu/COVID19

Physical Address:
300 W. Seward St. Ripon, WI 54971
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Phone: 920-748-8115
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