FAQs

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FAQs

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    Do I need to be vaccinated before returning to campus this fall?

    While we do not require vaccination, we strongly encourage all members of our campus community to get vaccinated against COVID-19.  Vaccination helps to protect our campus community from the spread of COVID-19, giving us the ability to enjoy normal campus operations.

    Do I need to test for COVID-19 before returning to campus?

    Students both living on campus or attending in-person classes are REQUIRED to provide a negative COVID-19 test result prior to returning to campus for the Fall 2021 semester. Students can submit proof of COVID-19 vaccination or proof of COVID-19 infection within the past 90 days in lieu of testing. See detailed information on the Health Services site regarding testing.

    For additional questions, please contact Health Services at 803/323-2206 or wuhealth@winthrop.edu.  For questions related to residence halls, please contact Residence Life at residencelife@winthrop.edu.

    Where can I get information about vaccination?

    Vaccines.gov  or SC Vaxlocator will help connect you with locations offering vaccines near your location. In addition to the website, people in the U.S. are also now able to text their ZIP code to 438829 (GETVAX) and 822862 (VACUNA) to find three locations nearby that have vaccines available. 

    Can I get vaccinated on campus?

    Yes, the university will offer three free vaccination clinics for students and employees on campus in the coming weeks, two of which are already scheduled:

    • Friday, Aug. 27 – Moderna – Campus Green, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
    • Tuesday, Sept. 14 – Pfizer – McBryde Hall, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.

    Watch your email for more information about registering for the clinics.

    Where can I get information about testing?

    Find a testing location near you by visiting www.scdhec.gov/findatest or calling 1-855-472-3432. Additionally, USC’s College of Pharmacy will continue to come to campus twice a month to offer free saliva testing through December 2021.  This testing option is available to all Winthrop faculty, staff and students.  Winthrop also hosts DHEC-sponsored free testing for the community at the Winthrop Coliseum Monday through Saturday from 9am-4pm.

    What if I test positive for COVID-19?

    If you test positive, you will need to isolate for 10 days from the date of your test before coming to campus.  Health Services will not require you to be retested before arriving.  You must communicate with Health Services at covidreporting@winthrop.edu upon receiving your positive results to discuss your 10-day isolation period.

    If you have tested positive within 90 days prior to your move-in date or first in-person date on campus, please upload your positive test result to the Patient Portal no later than 48 hours before your return to campus.

    If you test positive during the fall semester while on campus, upload your positive test result to the Patient Portal and schedule a telephone triage appointment with Health Services for further guidance. For students who live on campus, remain in your residence, do not go to class or interact with others. You will need to implement your quarantine and isolation plan as submitted to Residence Life.

    What do I do if I have been exposed to COVID-19 or am feeling sick while on campus?

    We ask that all students, vaccinated or not, remain vigilant throughout the semester.  If you know you have been in close contact with someone positive for COVID-19, and/or you feel sick, please contact Health Services at 803/323-2206 for assessment and instructions.

    Will I be required to wear a mask on campus?

    As of August 18, 2021, a face coverings requirement is in effect for all members of the campus community, regardless of vaccination status, while around others indoors in all of our campus facilities, including classrooms and laboratories. They also are required on buses and other forms of university transportation. This requirement does not apply in a student’s own residence hall room, a faculty or staff member’s private office (if alone) or while eating/drinking indoors on campus. As we continue to monitor the spread of COVID-19 in our community, we will periodically review this requirement and its continued implementation, guided by advice and recommendations of the CDC and SCDHEC.

    Are masks required in the residence halls? What guidelines will be in place in the residence halls?

    Masking is required in the hallways and common areas of all residence halls. This requirement does not apply in a student’s own residence hall room. Common areas will be open, and much of the furniture has been returned to these spaces. 

    Can I have visitors in my residence hall?

    The guest policy has been reinstated, so yes, visitors are allowed at this time. Depending on what happens with our incidence of the virus, we may have to change the policy in the interest of residential student health and safety.

    May I move in anytime between Thursday, August 19 and Sunday, August 22?

    Once you proceed through the Eaglesnest Pre Check-in process, you will be asked to select an available move-in appointment.  You will then receive a confirmation email with the move-in date/time you selected.  As long as you are COVID-19 compliant, please stick to that time. 

    What will move-in look like?

    Move-in will be staggered over a 4-day period (with two days reserved for freshmen).  Check-in will be located at The Shack (at the Winthrop Lake).  Students will only be allowed to move in if they have provided a negative COVID-19 test result within the 5 day window of arrival or, in leiu of testing, proof of vaccination or proof of a positive COVID-19 result in the last 90 days.  For questions, please contact Residence Life at residencelife@winthrop.edu.

    Does my family need to get tested to help me move in to my residence hall?

    It is highly recommended that family members assisting get tested, but it is not required.

    Is there a limit to the number of family members that can help me move in?

    We recommend that you bring no more than two move-in helpers with you.  We also recommend not bringing children under 12 or elderly adults. 

    Will there be any changes in the dining halls?

    Dining Services will continue to provide meals in individualized portions, maintain cleaning protocols, rotate use of dining areas, require masking of food service employees regardless of vaccination status, and physically distance dining facility queues.

    How will student organizations operate?

    Student organizations will be allowed to hold in-person meetings and events. However, it is strongly recommended that organizers continue to limit capacity of on campus events and meetings to 50 percent of fire code for the space used. The use of virtual platforms to hold meetings is also strongly encouraged.

    Will Convocation take place this year?

    Yes, Convocation is scheduled for 11 a.m. on Monday, Aug. 23 in the Coliseum. However, there will not be a picnic or student and community organizations festival held afterwards this year. Here is additional information regarding Convocation.

    Will Homecoming take place this year?

    Yes, but there will likely be a mix of virtual and in-person events this year.  Planning is still in progress. For full details and updates, please visit the Homecoming website next month.

    What will December Commencement be like?

    Current plans are for a normal Commencement Ceremony on Dec. 18.

    What about other campus events?

    When physically safe and feasible to do so, events may be held in person, with consideration of physical distancing and required masking.  However, events that typically gather a large crowd, especially those held indoors, should still be held virtually if possible.

    What are the plans regarding cultural events?

    We intend to have a mix of in-person and virtual cultural events offerings. Keep checking the cultural events calendar for the latest offerings.

    Will Dacus Library and Pettus Archives be open?

    Yes, Dacus and Pettus will be open.  Dacus’ and Pettus’ current operating hours can be found here.  Information on services and guidelines can be found here.

    Will faculty and staff have the discretion to determine how they meet with students this semester?

    Yes, this may be determined on a case-by-case basis depending on circumstances and the comfort level of all parties involved.

    Will faculty have the option to reconsider class modality?

    No, at this time, modalities must remain as they were listed in the course schedule.

    Will the campus be revisiting the telecommuting policy?

    Our telecommuting policy is based on guidance from the governor’s office, so we will not be revisiting this unless otherwise directed by the state.

    What are the guidelines for faculty/staff travel?

    Information forthcoming.

    Where can I find information about current COVID-19 activity on campus?

    Winthrop's COVID-19 dashboard keeps track of the number of student and employee cases and is updated every Tuesday morning.

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Last Updated: 8/19/21