This information is based on federal, state, and local regulations and guidance that we have at this time, as well as public health recommendations. As the situation with COVID-19 is fluid, plans are subject to change by the time our community returns to campus.
Employees of the College are strongly encouraged to be vaccinated, as the evidence is showing that the vaccine is limiting the spread of the virus and greatly reducing the number of cases and hospitalizations. The more members of our community are vaccinated, the safer it is for our students, colleagues, and the surrounding community. Being vaccinated is another way to show care for our dear neighbor. Currently, there are no vaccine requirements of any kind for employment.
However, the College will soon survey employees to determine the vaccination rates among employees.
The College will inform employees of this information closer to the start of the Fall 2021 semester.
Effective June 15, 2021, we have revised our Show Love, Mask Up policy to align with CDC recommendations. Unvaccinated individuals are required to wear a mask inside College buildings. Fully vaccinated individuals do not have to wear a mask inside of College buildings. Due to the low level of transmission risk, there are no masks required outdoors for either population. We understand comfort levels vary and encourage anyone who is more comfortable wearing a mask in any setting to do so. We will revisit the mask policy as the fall semester nears and revise as needed based on CDC guidelines.
The daily health questionnaire is no longer required by New York State for students or employees. However, because the College is not mandating the COVID-19 vaccination for employees upon full FDA approval, we will survey employees in the coming weeks to determine vaccination rates.
The College is finalizing staffing guidelines for employees’ return to campus sometime in August. Details will be shared with employees by early July.
At this time, with the exception of Admissions and Clinic operations, departments who will have visitors on campus still must require the visitor to complete an online health questionnaire on the date of their visit. (Admissions and the Clinic have their own screening forms and procedures). Unless invited by a College department, a campus visitor should not access this link independently. Invited visitors will be required to provide responses to the following questions:
Department in which they are visiting
Have you tested positive for COVID-19?
Have you been exposed to a person, who tested positive for COVID-19?
Do you have any symptoms of COVID-19?
Departments will be notified of visitor responses. If the visitor does not complete this questionnaire prior to their visit or indicates “Yes” to any of the COVID-19 related questions, they will not be allowed on campus. Human Resources should be notified immediately at 518.337.4858 if a visitor responds “Yes” at any time.
If a department wishes to use the visitor system, please email Kayleigh Heinmiller in the Human Resources Office at email@example.com as soon as possible. With your request, please provide the department name as it should appear in the system dropdown list and the email address of the department employee who will receive and review responses.
The College has a policy to deal with this situation. If you are in one of the above categories, please contact the Human Resources office at firstname.lastname@example.org.
College employees should stay home if they are feeling unwell in any way. This is one of the key ways to prevent the spread of COVID-19 and other illnesses. The College has a policy to deal with this situation. If you have symptoms of the virus, but have not been tested, please contact the Human Resources office at email@example.com.
The College has a policy to guide the College response for employees, who may test positive, have been exposed to COVID-19, or who may have symptoms of COVID-19. Consistent with guidance, a goal of the policy is to ensure that these situations are reported and that employees in these situations are excused from on-campus work to limit exposure to others. The policy supports employees to isolate at home if they have symptoms of COVID-19, have come in close contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19, or tests positive for COVID-19.
If an employee tests positive, the director of counseling and health services will notify the appropriate authorities, in conjunction with the associate vice president for human resources. The College will report employees testing positive to the Albany County Health Department, and will follow New York State, local, and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance regarding contact tracing. The College will work with the Albany County Health Department, as well as use trained employees to contact trace.
If an employee tests positive, the employee may not return to work until return to work is approved by the employee’s medical provider or a governmental entity with authority to approve return to work.
Classroom seating will be spaced 3 feet apart, consistent with the evolving health guidance. This still allows for full-capacity classes.
Regarding the HVAC systems in our buildings, air filters within the air system of Albertus Hall – and all other spaces around campus – are currently being upgraded and changed by the HVAC department within Facilities. A standard-level of filtration would utilize MERV8 filters. We are currently installing MERV10, MERV11, and in some cases, MERV12 and MERV13 filters. It is important to remember that, according to the CDC, “By themselves, HVAC filters are not enough to protect people from the virus that causes COVID-19, however, when used along with other best practices recommended by the CDC, upgraded filtration can be part of a plan to protect people indoors.” Facilities is also increasing the outdoor air intake of the air systems from a normal 10% to the 20% to 25% range.