Mar. 12, 2020

Important Information about Student Move Outs

This email was also sent to parents and faculty/staff at the College.

Dear Students,

Last night, you received a message from President Bergeron announcing that the College is moving to remote learning to limit the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) and that students need to vacate their rooms on campus. We recognize that this sudden change is a significant disruption to your life at Conn, and we are working hard to help you during this transition.

This has been a challenging few weeks with a lot of planning, discussions, and difficult decisions to make. Yesterday, President Katherine Bergeron, Dean of the College Jefferson Singer, Dean of Institutional Equity and Inclusion John McKnight, and I had the opportunity to discuss the College’s decisions with your Student Government Association executive board, and they were extraordinary in representing you in these discussions. They raised important questions and concerns about the challenges of the upcoming transition, which I will address in this message and on the FAQ page of the College’s COVID-19 site.

As President Bergeron noted in her message, remote learning will start on Wednesday, March 25. Between today and March 23, our goal is to facilitate a return to campus process that enables you to pick up what you need for your courses and to retrieve all of your belongings.

You will notice in our instructions that this process will be done under controlled conditions in order to limit contact between you and other individuals and to limit the number of buildings that students are entering. We have consulted with our local department of health to advise us on this process. To ensure the health and safety of our entire community, it is critical that everyone follow these important guidelines and expectations: 

  • Please do not come to campus if you are feeling sick. Read the FAQs for alternative ways to pack your items, access essential academic materials and store or ship your remaining belongings.

  • Complete the Move Out Plan Form informing the College when you will be arriving and departing from campus.

  • The only open entrance to the College will be the main entrance off Mohegan Avenue (Route 32). All other gates will be closed.

  • Plan to arrive on campus with enough time to pack your belongings and leave campus the same day. If this is not possible due to the driving distance to your home, please contact the Office of Residential Education and Living (REAL) at housing@conncoll.edu before you come to Conn.

  • Your Camel ID will only provide you access to your residence hall. Please do not go into other residence halls and only enter other buildings if it is absolutely necessary. This includes accessing athletic lockers, art projects etc.

  • Beginning on Friday, March 13, Grab ’n Go meals will be available in Oasis Snack Shop at no cost from 8:30 a.m. to 6 p.m. Harris Refectory will only be open to students previously registered to be on campus for spring break.  

  • While on campus, practice social distancing and Centers for Disease Control recommendations for staying healthy. (See the end of this message for details).

During this move-out period, Facilities Management staff will be regularly cleaning high-touch surfaces in residence halls such as railings, building entrances and hallway door knobs/crash bars and bathroom counters.

Below are some key pieces of information about the process. The FAQ provides additional details, as well as answers to questions that students and families may have.

How do I move out of my room?

  • The move-out process will take place from March 12 to March 23 at 6 p.m. Students who are staying on campus for spring break must move out by 6 p.m. on March 16 and students coming back to campus must move out by March 23.

  • Before returning to campus, you must complete the online Move Out Plan Form no later than March 15. This information will help us prepare for student arrivals throughout the move-out period.  

  • When you depart campus, please return your key to the gatehouse and complete the Check-Out Form, which will activate the credit process.

How do I manage exceptional circumstances that prevent me from going home?

  • We are asking students who are not able to return home to consider all other options including staying with extended family and friends.

  • The College understands there are some students with exceptional circumstances who are unable to go home and do not have people nearby who they can stay with. If this situation pertains to you, please complete the Stay On Campus Petition Form before March 15, and we will be back in touch with you directly.

  • Students who remain on campus will be consolidated into fewer residence halls and we will communicate arrangements for relocation if needed.

It is very important that you carefully review the FAQs on the College website as they provide more details about this process. For example, you will find information about packing, shipping and storage if you cannot get back to campus before March 23. In the coming days, we will be adding information as we receive additional questions from students.

This is a time when we need our community to come together and assist one another. I encourage you to offer to help pack a peer’s belongings, offer to store a student’s belongings, offer to house a friend with your family, offer to give a person a ride to where they need to go or offer to deliver someone’s belongings. These are just a few important ways that you can help a fellow Camel during these unprecedented times.  

In closing, I want to reiterate the CDC’s recommendations for staying healthy. While on campus and in the weeks and months ahead, please follow these guidelines:

  • Wash your hands frequently and thoroughly with soap and warm water for at least 20 seconds to avoid spreading any virus to others or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.

  • Cover coughs and sneezes in your elbow or sleeve, not your hand, to keep germs from spreading.

  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.

  • Avoid sharing drinks, food, cigarettes or vaping products.

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

  • Clean high-touch areas such as doorknobs, railings, phones and computers as often as possible. Using cleaning products or soap and water will most likely kill the virus.

  • While on campus for the move-out process, try to stay six feet away from others. Also follow this guidance if you are with someone who is sick.

Student Life staff and our colleagues from across campus are here and available to support you through the rest of the semester. Thank you in advance for your attention to these details and for your cooperation with this transition. I know that you probably have questions about the academic program as we move to remote education; Dean of the College Jefferson Singer will be sending a message about academics with corresponding FAQs. We are working daily to adapt to the changing circumstances and will continue to share timely and accurate information as soon as it becomes available.

Sincerely,

Victor Arcelus
Dean of Students