Aurora University

Update - 4 August 2020

Spartan Statue and Quad

A message from Carmella M. Moran, PhD, MSN, RN, Vice President for Administration:

All of us in the Aurora University community have a responsibility to minimize person-to-person transmission of the COVID-19 virus and to protect those most vulnerable to the disease. In addition to ensuring we make the university campus as safe as possible for everyone, we also want students who are coming to campus to have the very best experience from the moment they arrive. Our goal is to move forward together safely. We must all do our part. As mentioned in numerous messages, social distancing, facial coverings, and frequent handwashing are essential to preventing the spread of the virus. AU also will rely upon a variety of testing methodologies to monitor campus wellness. Students will be expected to comply with the requirements detailed below.

Requirements Before Returning to Campus

Will students be required to be tested for COVID-19 prior to returning to campus?

Aurora University will not require proof of a negative COVID-19 test in order to return to the campus. The university does, however, expect all students to adhere to strict physical distancing and the use of facial coverings for the 14 days prior to returning to the campus community. In addition, any residential students coming from out of state are expected to quarantine at home for 14 days prior to their move-in date.

Will students be required to quarantine upon arrival to campus?

No. Students will be expected to take appropriate precautions while traveling, including wearing a face covering at all times, practicing excellent hand hygiene, avoiding face touching and, wherever possible, maintaining a 6-foot distance from others.

How will Aurora University ensure that students adhere to all COVID-19 precautions?

Students will be expected to read and sign the Spartan Compact as they return to the campus for the 2020 fall semester. Students will be expected to abide by the terms set forth in the Spartan Compact. Serious consequences are possible for those who fail to do so.

What else will students be required to do when they check into a residence hall?

Once hall assignments are completed, students will be notified of designated check-in times.  Every effort will be made to ensure physical distancing during this process. Masks must be worn at all times. Students will be expected to provide completed health questionnaires and signed copies of the Spartan Compact.

Requirements Once You Are on Campus

Will students be required to test for COVID-19 upon arrival to campus?

Aurora University expects all students to monitor health through daily screening measures. Each student will receive a COVID-19 kit that includes an AU drawstring bag filled with a COVID-19 daily health screening checklist, Spartan Safety guidelines, disinfectant wipes, AU Safety key card, digital thermometer, hand sanitizer, and an AU face mask. Individuals who are sick must remain at home or in their residence hall room. Students will be required to report to AU Health Services any symptoms of COVID-19, exposure to COVID-19, or a personal positive test for COVID-19 (shs@aurora.edu/630-844-5434). Additional requirements will be in place for certain populations of students, including those living on campus or student-athletes participating in athletic department activities.

Will students be required to wear face coverings?

Yes. Students will be required to wear facial coverings over their nose and mouth when walking in public (e.g., hallways, common areas, restrooms, across campus) both inside and outside of campus buildings. Facial coverings are not required when alone in a residence hall room, or while showering or eating.

What other requirements will be in place on campus?

All students will abide by the Spartan Safety guidelines. The eight elements set forth in the Spartan Safety document constitute the foundation for Aurora University efforts to mitigate risks associated with the COVID-19 virus and therefore are non-negotiable. All members of the community must comply with these measures.

  • Use COVID-19 self-monitoring checklist to monitor for symptoms daily.
  • Stay home or in your residential hall room when you are sick.
  • Stay at least 6 feet from other people.
  • Wear a cloth face covering over nose and mouth at all times on campus, indoors and outdoors, except when in your residence hall room, or while showering or eating.
  • Wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use hand sanitizer.
  • Cover cough or sneeze with tissue (or into elbow/sleeve), and then wash hands.
  • Do not touch eyes, nose, mouth, or face.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces, especially those shared by others (e.g., photocopiers, file cabinets, door handles).

Tell me more about the university’s plans to provide COVID-19 testing members of the campus community.

Aurora University will require members of its residence life staff to participate in the testing services provided by the university in collaboration with the Visiting Nurse Association (VNA Health Care) to help all serving in this capacity to understand the process through firsthand experience. Consistent with current recommendations of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, other members of the campus community will not be required to participate in entry testing.

Students will be expected to participate in the university’s surveillance testing initiative conducted in collaboration with two external health organizations. Samplings of students in select populations (i.e., student-athletes and residence life) will be required to participate by providing a saliva sample. Test results will be available within 48–72 hours. This testing methodology was approved by the FDA in May 2020.

The university also will invest in making diagnostic testing available to members of AU community free of charge. Individuals who have been exposed recently to the virus or who are evidencing potential symptoms of the virus will be required to participate in the program offered in collaboration with VNA Health Care. Triage will be handled through Health Services for students or through Human Resources for employees.

Will the university also offer thermal screening?

Yes. Thermal testing stations will be located in high-traffic campus locations. Testing will be conducted by a stand-alone Zortemp screening instrument or with a handheld non-contact digital thermometer. Individuals with elevated temperatures will be asked to return to their home or residence hall and to contact Health Services or Human Resources for follow-up screening.

What should I do if I become ill?

Students who are ill, are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, or have a known COVID-19 exposure, will be required to stay home or in their residence hall room. Students should contact Health Services for guidance on next steps.

What happens if a student needs to quarantine or isolate?

It is possible that a student who lives on campus may be exposed to COVID-19 and may be required to isolate or quarantine. Under such circumstances, the university’s strong preference is for the student to return home. However, in the event this is not possible, AU will provide appropriate accommodations for such individuals (e.g., isolated bathroom facilities, appropriate PPE, etc.). AU Health Services will monitor these students on a daily basis. Food delivery will be arranged. Other campus services will be provided via remote delivery. To the extent possible, academic and instructional activities will continue. The university will make every effort to abide by relevant FERPA and HIPPA requirements as these services are rendered safely. VNA Health Care will handle contact tracing in collaboration with AU.