Return to Learn

Preventative Measures


Required Spring Semester COVID-19 Testing for Students

For the spring semester, all students who will be living on campus in residence halls and all students taking in-person classes on campus are required to provide a negative COVID-19 test result before moving onto campus or attending in-person classes. Please review more information on how to submit COVID-19 test results. 

Masks/cloth face coverings

Following CDC and DHEC guidance and the City of Rock Hill’s mandate, Winthrop is requiring all staff, faculty and students to wear masks or cloth facial coverings in social settings, such as in university buildings, including classrooms, residence halls and dining facilities, and in outdoor spaces on campus where appropriate social distancing cannot be guaranteed. Facial coverings are not required when alone in private offices, when alone in on-campus residence hall rooms and when not in close contact with another person, such as walking alone outside.

A single disposable mask may be obtained from the following campus locations if a member of the campus community or a visitor needs a mask: Dacus Library, Campus Center, West Center, Dinkins, Coliseum, Thomson (at the registers), and front desks in the residence halls.

Expectations to follow public health guidance

Prior to returning to work on campus, employees are required to review expectations of employees to follow public health guidance while on Winthrop’s campus, to review the expectations of employees to self-monitor and respond to symptoms or exposure, to review the required training and resources, and to complete the online acknowledgement for returning to work on campus.  See the Faculty and Staff Return to Work Notification, Training, and Resources section of the HR website.

Social distancing and self-care

Winthrop follows the CDC protocol for social distancing and self-care, which recommends you:

    • Stay at least 6 feet from other people
    • Do not gather in groups
    • Stay out of crowded places and avoid mass gatherings
    • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.  This is especially important after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing; going into the bathroom; and before eating or preparing food.
    • Use hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available.  Use alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol, covering all surfaces of your hands and rubbing them together until they feel dry.

  • Soap and water are the best option, especially if hands are visibly dirty.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

Cleaning and sanitizing

In addition to increased and more frequent general cleaning of high-traffic/high-touch areas by custodial staff, classrooms and other instructional spaces also will be equipped with sanitization products for general use. Faculty and students will be expected to wipe down and disinfect their desk and chair when entering the classroom before class begins. Offices will be similarly equipped with cleaning supplies, and employees are expected to clean and disinfect their personal office spaces on a daily basis. This will help support the work of the Facilities Management team in maintaining a healthy learning environment for all.

Residence hall modifications

We are taking extra precautions to ensure that our residence halls are as safe as possible for all students living on campus and to mitigate against the spread of COVID-19. Residence hall capacities have been somewhat limited to allow for some social distancing, more private rooms, and quarantine/isolation housing. Our new housing contract addendum outlines revisions to our guest policy, restrictions on who has access to the halls, and reduced access to community spaces, lounges, kitchens, laundry rooms, elevators, etc. Residents also are encouraged to restrict their interactions, stay away from crowds, and mask/social distance whenever possible. Residence hall programming will be virtual in most cases.

Dining modifications

When dining rooms are open, there will be limited seating capacity, updated configurations, physical barrier and floor markers to encourage social distancing. Self-service food options have been eliminated, and menus have been revised to address product availability, speed of transaction and mobility of carryout. There are more pre-packaged options to allow for quick service and carryout convenience. In the Campus Center, a separate Grub Hub pick up area allows customers to order retail food ahead and pick up outside of the building to ease the lines in those restaurants and the foot traffic in the building. There is also additional outside seating around the Campus Center and Thomson to support expanded carryout service.

In-person events guidelines

Departments and student organizations requesting to hold on-campus events will need to complete an organization event management form which will be reviewed by University Events and Student Engagement & Diversity as appropriate. Everyone is strongly encouraged to utilize virtual platforms--Zoom, Microsoft Teams, and Blackboard Collaborate--as much as possible. All in-person events will implement social distance practices to include modified venue occupancy, dedicated lines for entry and exit, proper spacing between tables and chairs, catering services, etc.  Updated event guidelines can be found here, or for more information, visit the University Events resources page.

Student Conduct Code modifications

The Student Code of Conduct has been revised to include specific language and policies to enhance and enforce campus health and safety. There is a COVID-19 addendum to the Student Code which specifically addresses campus expectations regarding personal health, face coverings, social distancing, gatherings and guests/visitation. This document clearly outlines the conduct sanctions for failure to comply.

Vehicle Travel

For vehicular travel related to performing job duties, only one employee may be in the vehicle at a time to the extent possible. In situations where the work requires a crew or more than one person in a vehicle at the same time, all employees must wear face coverings. 

Campus Safety Ambassador (CSA) Program

The Campus Safety Ambassador (CSA) program was developed by the Dean of Students Office and Office of Student Engagement & Diversity, to promote and support campus health and safety initiatives pertaining to COVID-19 through peer education accountability. Staffed in the DiGiorgio Campus Center and the West Center, CSAs work to maintain a safe community of care for the students on campus during the response to COVID-19 by encouraging masking and physical distancing. CSAs are trained to respond to situations with integrity, courtesy and respect. CSAs are supported by the Dean of Students Office and have an assigned responsibility to report students who disregard the Covid-19 Safety Guidelines.