Covid-19 Protocols

As the Covid-19 pandemic has evolved, so has Susquehanna University’s response to the latest developments and guidance that prioritizes the health and safety of our community members. Every member of the university community — faculty, staff, and students — must continue to play an active role, as well as visitors.


Updated Sept. 26, 2022

Student Protocol Summary

Vaccination

Students are required to be fully vaccinated prior to arriving to campus, unless approved with an exemption. See Vaccination Protocols.

Close Contact

Students who are identified as close contacts should call the Student Health Center and follow recommendations for masking and testing. See details in the below Protocols.

Symptomatic

Students with symptoms must call the Student Health Center for instructions. See details in the below Protocols.

Covid-positive

Students who test positive with self-testing kits or at an off-campus facility must call the Health Center to receive instructions for quarantine, masking and meal pick up. See limited-exposure isolation and other details in the below Protocols.

Study Away University-sponsored Travel

Students who participate in university-sponsored international travel (and GO Short domestic programs) must be fully vaccinated and follow latest CDC and host-location requirements prior to their departure, which can be months in advance. See details in the below Protocols.

Student-athletes

Student-athletes must follow Susquehanna and NCAA Covid protocols.

Overnight Guests in Residence Halls

Only fully vaccinated, registered guests are permitted overnight in residence areas. See details in the below Protocols.


Vaccination Protocols

See Susquehanna’s latest Vaccination Protocols


Face Masks

Anyone can mask up at any time and in any place.

Masking protocols:

  • Classroom protocols.
    • Instructors have discretion to require masks in classrooms regardless of class participants’ vaccination/booster status.
  • Individuals who are close contacts or under isolation protocols must follow respective 10-day protocols.
  • Unvaccinated individuals traveling on university business with other campus community members, including field trips and athletics travel, are required to wear a mask.
  • Anyone entering the Student Health Center must wear a mask.
  • Student-athletes must follow any additional NCAA protocols.
  • Individuals on international university-sponsored travel must follow any additional host-country protocols.

Acceptable masks

When required, acceptable face masks include high-quality masks (e.g., KN95), and must be worn to cover nose and mouth and fit snugly around the face and chin.

Exemptions

When masks are required, students can request medical exemptions from the Student Health Center. Employees can request a medical exemption through Human Resources.


Handwashing

Handwashing with soap and water for at least 20 seconds is encouraged, especially after blowing one’s nose, coughing, sneezing or touching one’s face. Hand sanitizer is provided at stations across campus.


Fitness Center

Use of the Fitness Center requires online reservations for students through the IM Leagues App.

Faculty and staff can use their current Susquehanna ID to access the fitness center. Families of employees will need a fitness center access card, which employees can obtain in the athletics office on the second floor of Garrett Sports Complex, Monday through Thursday, 8 a.m. to 1 p.m.


Residence Hall Overnight Guests

Overnight guests in any residence halls, townhouses, apartments, suites and small houses are required to be fully vaccinated and registered as a guest through the Campus Safety Office. A copy of the guest’s vaccination card will need to be uploaded to the overnight guest form.


University Travel Guidelines

See Covid-Related Travel Advisories


Work Arrangements

Faculty and staff with disabilities (which may include those with serious health conditions that put them at greater risk from Covid-19) may request accommodations by contacting Human Resources via email.

All other faculty and staff are expected to work on site, except for days approved by their supervisor to work remotely and in compliance with the university’s Telework Policy.

All employees, even if up to date vaccinated, are required to follow the protocols of any off-campus premises they visit while on university business.


Strategies for Staying Healthy

Close Contact Protocols


Student close contacts

Students who are a close contact are not required to quarantine and may report to classes and activities if the student is symptom free. Follow the recommendations of the CDC.

  • Wear a high-quality mask (e.g., KN95) indoors for 10 full days after your last exposure.
    • Day 0 is the day of your last exposure to someone with Covid-19.
  • Get tested on Day 6, even without symptoms. Kits are available from the Student Health Center.
    • If you test positive, notify the Student Health Center and follow the Covid-positive protocols.
    • If you test negative, continue the mask protocol through Day 10.


Faculty and staff close contacts


Faculty and staff who are a close contact or household close contacts are not required to quarantine and may report to work if the employee is symptom free. Follow the recommendations of the CDC.

  • It is recommended you wear a high-quality mask (e.g., KN95) indoors for 10 full days after your last exposure.
  • Test if you become symptomatic.
    • If you test positive, follow the faculty and staff with a positive Covid-19 test protocol.
    • If you test negative, continue the mask protocol through Day 10.

Symptomatic Protocols


Students
 with symptoms

 

If a student is experiencing Covid-19 symptoms, they are to immediately mask, return to their assigned residence hall room and call the Student Health Center for an appointment at 570-372-4385. Testing will be provided by the Student Health Center. Students are responsible for contacting professors and discussing academic concerns for absences. Student employees must notify supervisors for absences.

Faculty and staff with symptoms

Faculty and staff who experience Covid-19 symptoms or become ill because of a Covid infection may request from their supervisor to work remotely (independent of any approved disability accommodations), where essential functions of the jobs are fulfilled and the student experience is not compromised, by following the Telework Policy, or use their regular sick leave.

Follow university protocols regarding self-monitoring, isolation, or any other restrictions or required actions. Employees may return to campus after being fever-free for 24 hours without the use of medication, free of respiratory symptoms and other symptoms improving.

Supervisors and department heads may send faculty or staff home if employees are experiencing Covid-19 symptoms. 


Covid-positive Protocols


Planning ahead for students

Any student who tests positive will be required to follow limited-exposure isolation procedures for at least five full days in their room or away from campus, as there is no official isolation space on campus. Have a plan either way. For in-room isolation, have a self-isolation kit ready with: acetaminophen (Tylenol), ibuprofen (Advil), thermometer, snacks, prescription medications, personal care items (cough drops, contact lens fluid, tissues), etc. Have a discussion with your roommate to plan ahead. For isolating off campus, have a plan of where you will go and what you need to bring with you.

Students with a positive Covid-19 test


From your room (home for commuters), call the Student Health Center immediately for guidance.

Students with a positive test must follow limited-exposure isolation protocols in your assigned residential room or move off campus (stay home for commuters). If applicable, notify your roommate that you tested positive.

Limited-exposure isolation protocols for SU students

Day 0 is your first day of symptoms or a positive viral test.
Day 1 is the first full day after your symptoms developed or your test specimen was collected.
Day 0-5, even without symptoms, limited-exposure protocols:

  • Classes — Do NOT report to class. The Center for Academic Success will notify your professors of your excused absence. Make arrangements with other students to exchange notes if you have to miss class. Notify your instructor to coordinate coursework while away from class.
  • Meals — Do NOT dine in. Get to-go food only … preferably from Evert Dining Room, which is well ventilated. Wear a well-fitted, high-quality mask (e.g., KN95) and spend less than 15 minutes collecting food to go. Keep physical distance from others as much as possible.
  • Activities — Only leave your room for the bathroom or pre-approved medical appointments. Do not do laundry or pick up mail/packages. Do not attend co-curricular activities. Student employees must notify supervisors for absences.

Day 6-10
Actions noted below require Student Health Center clearance:

  • Students can end isolation after 5 full days if fever-free for 24 hours (without the use of fever-reducing medication) and other symptoms are improving, if cleared by the Student Health Center.
    • The student may show up for class and activities, but should wear a well-fitted high-quality mask (e.g., KN95) through Day 10 around others and in public. To-go meals are still preferable, due to the CDC mask recommendation.
    • Avoid being around people who are at high risk through Day 10.
    • With two sequential negative tests 48 hours apart, you may remove your mask and dine in as soon as Day 8.
  • Students who are still experiencing symptoms need to consult the Student Health Center.
    • Students will be required to produce a negative test between Day 6-9 to request an early release from isolation protocols.
    • If a student continues to test positive, they will need to complete the 10-day isolation period before they are evaluated and released by the Student Health Center.

Student-athletes are required to follow any additional NCAA protocols related to practice, training or competitions.


Faculty and staff with a positive Covid-19 test

For employees who test positive for Covid, notify your supervisor and record sick leave on your timesheet. Isolate at home for at least 5 days and be fever-free for 24 hours without the use of medication and other symptoms are improving. Wear a well-fitted high-quality mask (e.g., KN95) through Day 10 around others and in public. With two sequential negative tests 48 hours apart, you may remove your mask and dine in as soon as Day 8.

Employees may request from their supervisor to work remotely (independent of any approved disability accommodations), where essential functions of the jobs are fulfilled and the student experience is not compromised, by following the Telework Policy.


Sharing of Information

Student and employee information related to Covid is considered confidential and will be shared with the Covid Response Team as needed to ensure the safety of the university community.


Mental Health Resources

Understandably, some Susquehanna community members could feel anxious about the pandemic and its impacts. In addition to Susquehanna resources below, visit cdc.gov for helpful tips to manage stress and anxiety.

Students

Students are encouraged to ask for help when needed for physical health, mental health and emotional well-being. Available support services for students include:


Faculty and staff


For faculty and staff, SU offers two Employee Assistance Programs


Strategies to Communicate

The university will regularly update its webpages to reflect the most current information. Should significant changes in practices or protocols take place, these will be announced by email to all university constituents.