Adopted by President's Cabinet 7/30/20

The worldwide spread of COVID-19, a respiratory disease caused by a novel strain of coronavirus, has led to a public health crisis. East Georgia State College [EGSC] aims to deliver campus housing while protecting the health and safety of our students and minimizing the potential spread of COVID-19 and other disease within our community. With this priority in mind, EGSC is working in tandem with public health officials to make informed public health decisions that will impact your campus housing experience during the 2020-2021 academic year. Because of the uncertainty of COVID-19, EGSC housing policies, procedures, and guidelines may evolve throughout the year to minimize the risks posed by COVID-19. 

EGSC residential students play a key role in helping to prevent the spread of COVID-19, and therefore should be aware of the following: 

Health and Safety. All members of the EGSC residential community—residents, staff, and visitors—shall act in a manner that demonstrates respect and consideration for those around them, including respect and consideration for the health and safety of all community members. Residential students are prohibited from creating any health or safety hazards within EGSC Housing, and EGSC may request or require a residential student to leave EGSC Housing if their continued presence in the housing community poses a health or safety risk for community members. Residential students will be required to comply with EGSC requirements in addition to health and safety laws, orders, ordinances, regulations. For example, EGSC may set limits on mass gatherings, require COVID-19 diagnostic and surveillance testing (including before or upon arrival to campus), perform contact tracing, set disinfection protocols, establish limits on guests and visitation at residence halls, and set quarantine / isolation requirements (including before or upon arrival to campus). Adherence to these and other health and safety requirements will be required of all residential students, staff, and visitors. These requirements will extend to all areas of EGSC Housing, including bedrooms, bathrooms, community kitchens, lounges, computer rooms, courtyards, and other common spaces. 

In addition to these requirements, EGSC may strongly encourage residential students to follow public health guidance promulgated by public health authorities including, but not limited to, the following preventative measures: 

    • Practice good hand hygiene by either washing hands often with soap and water forat least 20 seconds or by using alcohol-based hand sanitizer which contains at least60% alcohol;
    • Effective July 15, 2020, University System of Georgia (USG) institutions will require all faculty,staff, students, and visitors to wear an appropriate face covering while inside campusfacilities/buildings where six feet social distancing may not always be possible, includingresidence hall common areas but not including an individual’s room/suite.
    • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces;
    • Avoid contact with people who are sick;
    • Stay in your assigned space if you are feeling sick and contact EGSC Health Clinicregarding your symptoms; and,
    • Practice social distancing strategies, where possible.

Occupancy. Residence hall rooms will be viewed as a shared residence within each room or suite, similar to a family’s shared residence in that social distancing practices are not expected within the room or suite. As such, it is the responsibility of residential students to adhere to appropriate behaviors related to the prevention of COVID-19 within the room, including the cleaning of their assigned room or suite. Residential students should always consider following best practices for prevention even within the shared residence and take responsibility for their own actions. 

Quarantine / Isolation / Separation. At any time, EGSC may request or require a resident to leave EGSC Housing when that resident’s continued presence in the residential community poses a health or safety risk for community members. Residential students are required to comply with directions from EGSC to leave or relocate from their assigned space due to COVID-19 or other public health emergency. Failure to follow EGSC direction may be a violation of EGSC Housing Agreement and EGSC Housing policies which may subject a student to emergency removal from their assigned space. 

De-Densifying Efforts. Residential students are required to comply with any EGSC de-densifying effort on campus due to COVID-19 or other public health emergency, including, but not limited to, the reassignment of all or some residential students to alternative housing. 

Dining Services. Dining service, including where and how service is offered to residential students, is subject to modification, at EGSC’s discretion, to address public health concerns. EGSC may adopt additional guidance at any time to minimize risk such as limiting the occupancy of dining halls, the amount of time students may reside within dining halls, or make other operational adjustments needed to address health and safety concerns or delivery of services for students in quarantine or isolation. 

Cleaning. EGSC/CORVIAS will continue to follow the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Georgia Department of Public Health, and other public health authorities’ cleaning and sanitizing guidelines. EGSC/CORVIAS will modify its cleaning protocols as necessary or recommended to minimize the spread of disease. EGSC/CORVIAS Housing will educate and inform residential students on appropriate cleaning protocols within their assigned spaces to reduce the spread of COVID-19 within residence halls. Residential students will be required to provide their own cleaning supplies for their assigned space. 

COVID-19 IS AN EXTREMELY CONTAGIOUS DISEASE THAT CAN LEAD TO SEVERE ILLNESS AND DEATH. DESPITE THE ABOVE EGSC REQUIREMENTS AND GUIDELINES IN RESPONSE TO COVID-19, EGSC CANNOT GUARANTEE THAT RESIDENTIAL COMMUNITY MEMBERS AND VISITORS WILL NOT BE EXPOSED TO OR INFECTED WITH COVID-19 WHILE LIVING IN OR VISITING EGSC RESIDENTIAL HALLS. AN INHERENT RISK OF ANY COMMUNAL LIVING OR SHARED LIVING ENVIRONMENT IS THE INCREASED POTENTIAL EXPOSURE TO PATHOGENS AND CONTAGIOUS VIRUSES, INCLUDING COVID-19 DUE TO THE ACTIONS OR OMISSIONS OF OTHERS. ACCORDINGLY, LIVING ON CAMPUS CAN ELEVATE THE RISK OF CONTRACTING ANY CONTAGIOUS ILLNESS SIMPLY DUE TO THE RESIDENCE HALL SPACE UTILIZATION AND POPULATION DENSITY. 

EGSC is committed to keeping you updated about what you can expect for the upcoming academic year. For more information, questions, or updates regarding how COVID-19 may impact campus residential life, please contact EGSC Housing at housingFREEOMNIUPDATE, or visit http://www.ega.edu/covid19