Q: How does your University handle pandemics like COVID-19?
A: In collaboration with the Cleveland Clinic and local health officials, the University has designed a reopening plan. This plan began with sending all incoming students a testing kit to complete before move-in. Students are only approved for move-in if they test negative. All students are also required to complete an orientation module going over expectations and health guidelines for the semester.
Since the end of July, undergraduates have been returning to campus. Move-in slots are staggered to limit the amount of individuals in each hall at any time. Only 2 guests are allowed to assist each student with move-in. Upon arrival, students receive a “welcome back” package with 5 reusable masks, a thermometer, hand sanitizer, and more.
While on campus, ALL individuals are expected to abide by the following rules:
- Wear a mask
Masks are required in all spaces except for one’s own dorm room. Masks are also expected to be worn outdoors if people cannot be 6 feet apart.
- Wash your hands
Students should wash their hands in accordance with CDC guidelines and utilize the new hand sanitizer stations around campus.
- Maintain physical distancing
Students must stay 6 feet apart from everyone except their roommate(s), who is/are considered part of their “household.”
- Complete your daily health check
The daily health checks require students to take their temperature each morning and report any COVID-linked symptoms they’ve experienced recently. If students do not pass the daily health check, they are not approved to attend activities that day (class, extracurriculars, et cetera).
Physical distancing must be maintained in classrooms and at any extracurricular meetings. Attendance is required at all meetings for purposes of contract tracing. The dining halls are only open for takeout at this point in the semester.
Testing will be available on campus, and quarantine spaces have been designated for any students who need to isolate from others. The University has also created a COVID-19 Response Unit (CRU). If you have any questions about the University’s strategy, the CRU has a 24-hour hotline (574-634-HERE) or can be reached via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Since plans can change so quickly, the best site to visit is here.nd.edu, which contains updated information about Notre Dame’s COVID-19 response.
Q: With the concerns about COVID-19 affecting varsity sports on college campuses, how will they most likely affect less prominent extracurriculars like clubs sports or clubs that meet face to face?
A: For any in-person events, including club meetings, physical distancing must be maintained and attendance is required for potential contact tracing. Many clubs are opting to meet virtually or still figuring out the best way to proceed.
The University has listed several events that are not permitted this semester pertaining to extracurricular groups:
- Indoor choral activities
- Off-campus travel or events for student organizations
- Student dances
- Races and runs
- The student group concession stand program
Since these activities are prohibited, student organizations are exploring new ways to meet. Many singing groups are holding virtual auditions and rehearsals. Student groups are also encouraged to reserve spaces such as the South Quad or North Quad Tents, Legends club and patio, Wind Family Fireside Terrace at the Morris Inn, and more. In addition, there are many spaces dedicated to informal gathering.
According to the RecSports Reopening Plan, intramural sports will have “various leagues and tournaments throughout the semester” and club sports will have “on-campus opportunities for practice, dependent on club specific operations.” For club sports, no off-campus travel is allowed this semester. Teams from other schools are also not allowed to compete or scrimmage against our club sports teams. However, RecSports is committed to collaborating with these groups to ensure their continuation in some form.