The campus community received the following message from the College of Charleston COVID-19 Leadership Team on Wednesday, July 13, 2022, regarding COVID-19 protocols for the upcoming academic year:
Dear Campus Community,
In preparation for the upcoming 2022-23 academic year, the College of Charleston has established the COVID-19 protocols outlined below. These guidelines are intended to minimize the spread of the virus in our community while at the same time allow us to continue providing exceptional academic and campus life experiences for our students.https://today.cofc.edu/2022/08/08/cofc-adjusts-covid-isolation-measures-for-residential-students/
Due to the increased availability of vaccines, treatments and rapid testing, South Carolina, along with other states and the federal government, has begun treating COVID-19 as an endemic virus. This designation means that the disease is circulating at an expected or normal level, minus an occasional outbreak.
As you make plans to return to campus, please be aware of the recommendations that were communicated to the campus community on July 6, 2022.
As a part of the protocols listed below, all students, including returning students, should complete the College of Charleston COVID-19 Vaccination Documentation Form by 5 p.m., Tuesday, Aug. 30, 2022.
RELATED: CofC Adjusts COVID Isolation Measures for Residential Students
While the protocols listed below will be in effect for the start of the fall semester, the College’s leadership will continue to monitor conditions closely on and off campus and will make adjustments as necessary. The protocols will be maintained and updated on the College’s Back on the Bricks website.
The College has weathered the pandemic with minimal disruption to our operations due to the resilience and response of our campus community, including high vaccination rates among students and employees. We continue to encourage everyone to get vaccinated and boosted, so that we can maintain our positive momentum into the new academic year.
Students and employees who have questions about the College’s COVID-19 protocols may send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. In addition, College officials will hold a virtual town hall for families and students to address our COVID-19 protocols and answer questions prior to the start of classes. Details will be announced soon.
We are excited to welcome everyone back for another academic year and look forward to seeing all of you on campus soon.
CofC COVID-19 Leadership Team
COVID-19 Protocols for the 2022-23 Academic Year
- Every student, including returning students, should complete the College of Charleston COVID-19 Vaccination Documentation Form by visiting go.cofc.edu/vax-upload by 5 p.m., Tuesday, Aug. 30, 2022.This information is critical to decision-making for College operations.
- Students who upload their COVID-19 vaccination documentation will be eligible for prize drawings to win $100 gift cards to the CofC Bookstore. Details will be announced soon.
- Information provided in the COVID-19 Documentation Form is kept strictly confidential and will only be used by the COVID-19 team for operational decisions. Neither parents nor students will receive an email after submitting this form that indicates a student’s vaccination status – whether vaccinated or unvaccinated.
- In accordance with guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC), the College strongly recommends that its students, faculty and staff receive the COVID-19 vaccine.
- CDC recommends COVID-19 primary series vaccines for everyone ages 6 months and older and COVID-19 boosters for everyone ages 5 years and older, if eligible.
- COVID-19 vaccination is not required for any student to enroll or any employee to work at the College of Charleston.
- Masks are not currently required on campus unless one of the following applies:
- You are on days 1-5 of isolation or required quarantine and have not yet left campus.
- You are on days 6-10 of your isolation and have returned to campus.
- You are unvaccinated or not current on your COVID-19 vaccines and are returning to campus on days 6-10 of your quarantine due to a close contact with a positive COVID-19 case.
- Those who are not vaccinated and/or those who wish to continue to wear high-quality, well-fitted masks such as a KN95 are encouraged to do so, especially in large indoor gatherings.
- The College will make KN95 masks available to students, faculty and staff. Information about pick-up locations for masks will be announced prior to the start of classes.
IN THE CLASSROOM
- Classrooms and course sections will be filled to the regular (fire-code) capacity of the room.
- Non-academic gatherings are currently not subject to attendance restrictions.
- Please direct anyone who wishes to self-report a close contact or a positive case to the self-report buttons at the top of the Back on the Bricks website.
RETURN-TO-CAMPUS COVID-19 TESTING
- The College of Charleston does not require return-to-campus testing.
- All students, faculty and staff are encouraged to self-test for COVID-19 prior to move-in, prior to the start of classes and at any time they have symptoms consistent with COVID-19.
- Anyone testing positive for COVID-19 is expected to complete isolation away from campus, per CDC guidance.
COVID-19 TESTING OPTIONS
- The College of Charleston does not currently plan to offer large-scale COVID-19 testing programs for asymptomatic campus community members during the 2022-23 academic year.
- Members of the campus community are strongly encouraged to monitor themselves for COVID-19 symptoms. If symptoms occur, individuals should isolate immediately, seek testing promptly, continue to isolate if the test is positive and follow CDC Isolation Guidance.
- All campus community members are strongly encouraged to stock up on at-home COVID-19 self-tests. Students living on campus should obtain these kits prior to arrival on campus. Order free tests at COVIDtests.gov. Free tests are also available through local health departments.
- All currently enrolled students who are symptomatic for COVID-19 may be tested at Student Health Services.
- The College plans to make self-test kits available throughout the fall semester to all faculty, staff and students. More details regarding the distribution of these tests will be announced closer to the start of the fall semester. In the meantime, staff and faculty can continue obtaining at-home self-test kits through the Office of Human Resources.
QUARANTINE AND ISOLATION
- The College of Charleston will have extremely limited space during the 2022-2023 academic year to house residential students who require isolation. All students living in CofC-sponsored housing should make a COVID-19 plan with their families to leave campus immediately during their isolation period if they become positive for COVID-19.
- All students should create a plan with their roommates outlining what they will do if someone becomes COVID-19-positive in their living space.
- Individuals who are vaccinated and boosted and who have had close contact with a positive case are not required to quarantine, but testing is strongly recommended at 5 days from exposure. Wear a high-quality mask such as a KN95 for 10 days following exposure while around others.
- Individuals who are vaccinated but not boosted and who have had close contact with a positive case must quarantine for a minimum of 5 days away from campus and are strongly recommended to test on day 5. Wear a high-quality mask such as a KN95 while on campus or around others on days 6-10 of quarantine.
- Individuals who are unvaccinated and have had close contact with a positive case must quarantine for a minimum of 5 days away from campus and are strongly recommended to test on day 5. Wear a high-quality mask such as a KN95 while on campus or around others on days 6-10 of quarantine.
- All campus community members must self-report their positive tests using the self-report form located at the top of the Back on the Bricks website.
COLLEGE OF CHARLESTON–SPONSORED TRAVEL
- For faculty and staff, College-sponsored domestic travel is permitted. For College-sponsored international travel, faculty and staff should work with their division/department heads.
- The CDC strongly recommends that individuals who plan to travel be fully up-to-date on their COVID-19 vaccines.