Staff Updates

  • Notes from the Virtual Mudd | March 30

    We created a new library guide, “Library Resources & Services for Remote Teaching,” (http://guides.lib.lawrence.edu/remoteteaching)

    Reference librarians continue to be on call for chat and email reference questions, 8:30-4:30, Monday-Friday.


  • Campus Cleaning Procedures in Place | March 23

    The building closures and hours limitations announced last week are intended not only to reduce personal contact but also to allow cleaning crews to focus their energies on more frequent and intensive cleaning of places that remain in use, especially areas where higher traffic is unavoidable. Campus Services has stepped up cleaning routines in spaces that remain open.

    Those who are able to work from home can help by working remotely as much as possible, to minimize risk for colleagues who cannot work from home and to further reduce burden on our custodial staff. 

    What Campus Services is doing to fight the spread/arrival of COVID-19

    We are currently disinfecting hard surfaces in all buildings at least twice a day with the exception of:

    • Computer keyboards and mice, telephones, desktops (cleaning these is the responsibility of the employee)
    • Trash/Recycling Cans (once/day if the office/space is occupied)

    The items that are done twice a day are as followed:

    • Door knobs/pulls
    • Tabletops/countertops
    • Arms of chairs
    • Light switches
    • Elevator buttons
    • Hand rails
    • Drinking fountains
    • All bathroom surfaces
    • All glass doors instead of glass cleaner
    • Floors
    • Trash/Recycling Cans

  • Updates on Developments Regarding COVID-19

    We are reaching out to provide an update on developments regarding the COVID-19 virus.

    Lawrence health officials were notified on Sunday, March 22, that a parent who was on campus Thursday, March 19, to help their child move out has since tested positive for COVID-19. The parent was on campus for approximately 90 minutes (11 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.) and helped with a student move-out in Hiett Hall. The parent may have had brief interactions with staff members who were assisting with check-out process, and two students also reported they may have been in contact with the parent. The interactions were limited. Lawrence was awaiting confirmed notification of everyone who may have been in the vicinity of the parent before sharing this information more broadly. That notification process is now complete.

    Public health officials from the county in which the family lives will be in touch with all those who may have had contact and will provide further guidance. Our local health department believes this is a low-risk situation; however, in an abundance of caution, we thought it best to notify the Lawrence community at this time. If you believe you may have been in contact with the parent, please contact Lawrence’s Health Services office at 920-832-6574 or email wellnessservices@lawrence.edu.

    We wish the parent involved a speedy recovery and the rest of the family good health. Our thoughts and good wishes are with everyone in our Lawrence community as we do all we can to help mitigate the spread of this virus while ensuring our commitment to Lawrence students, faculty, staff, and extended family remain intact. As the history of this infection shows, it is proving impossible to halt its spread. Our goal now is to help slow transmission and to ensure the health and safety of those Lawrentians who remain on campus.

    Lawrence continues to limit access to campus and follow recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in cleaning and sanitizing shared spaces. That has included limiting as much as possible access to residence halls during student move-outs. Many facilities on campus are closed, while others have restricted access to allow for more regular cleaning of areas where there is less avoidable traffic. See details here.

    Take steps to avoid becoming ill: As a reminder, the following recommendations from CDC can help limit the spread of the virus: 

    • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.  
    • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth. 
    • Stay home when you are sick. 
    • Cover your cough or sneeze with your elbow or a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash. 
    • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. (If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.) 
    • Always wash hands with soap and water if your hands are visibly dirty. 
    • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.

    What to do if you think you might have COVID-19: Before going to your health care clinic, call your health care professional if you feel sick with fever, cough, or have difficulty breathing, AND have been in close contact with a person known to have COVID-19, or have recently traveled from an area with ongoing spread of COVID-19. If you are a member of faculty or staff, or a student living off-campus, this means your local health care professional. Students living on campus can reach out to Wellness Services. Your health care professional will work with your state’s public health department and CDC to determine if you need to be tested for COVID-19. Information on health services at Lawrence can be found at www.lawrence.edu/students/wellness/health.  

    A reminder: Wellness Services-Health is available for consultation to students from campus or home Monday-Friday, 8 a.m.-4 p.m. If questions arise after-hours, call Nurse Direct (24-hour medical advice) at 920-738-2230. 

    The University will continue to send updates as warranted. Also, please watch for updates on the COVID-19 news blog. Thank you for your patience and cooperation as we adapt to this fluid environment.

    Sincerely,

    Office of Communications, on behalf of the COVID-19 Management Team


  • Access to campus buildings to be limited; facilities closed to visitors | March 20

    The following is an update on access to Lawrence University facilities as the University looks to mitigate the spread of COVID-19.

    The COVID-19 Management Team knows the changes listed below will be difficult as we all continue to navigate this global pandemic. Thank you for your willingness to support one another and to stay committed to our students and to each other.

    The health and safety of our Lawrence community is paramount as we make decisions about how to move forward while working to stem any spread of the virus. Cleaning and sanitizing spaces that are still being used by on-campus community members is a top priority.

    All faculty and staff who have the ability to work from home are encouraged to do so. Please work with your supervisor to make appropriate accommodations. See earlier message from HR here.

    With that as the backdrop, we are announcing today that campus will be closed to all visitors beginning immediately. Only students staying on campus, faculty, and staff will be allowed on campus, and hours and access will be limited. Parents who are here to move their student out of a residence have been asked to remain in their vehicles. Staff members are assisting students in the packing of their vehicles. See move-out instructions here. (Note that there will be certain vendors and contractors permitted on campus on a case-by-case basis and with appropriate isolation of work areas and enhanced cleaning procedures.)

    Buildings will be locked: With the exception of Brokaw Central (see details below) and the Wellness Center (see details below), all buildings on campus will be locked daily, allowing only for card-swipe access. That access should only take place between 8 a.m. and 5 p.m. weekdays (see details below) unless granted permission.

    Campus facilities off limits after 5 p.m.: Effective immediately, all academic, office, and satellite buildings on campus will be closed to all at 5 p.m., Monday through Friday, so daily cleaning and sanitizing can take place. Facilities, custodial, and campus safety staff can access those buildings after 5 p.m. to clean and sanitize areas; other employees should avoid accessing buildings after 5 p.m., unless approved by their supervisor. The only exception is the café in Warch Campus Center, which will be available to students to retrieve meals until 6:30 p.m. daily (see details below). On weekends, all buildings, with the exception of the café in Warch and the Music-Drama Center, will be closed. The Music-Drama Center will be open for limited use from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturdays and Sundays. 

    Some buildings to close completely: The following buildings will be closed: International House, Sabin House, Wilson House, Mursell House, and the Diversity and Intercultural Center within Memorial Hall. Staff needing to periodically access those spaces should first notify their supervisor. The student food pantry, currently located in Sabin House, will be relocated to a space where students have easy access. Details on that will be announced shortly. The closures of these buildings are part of efforts to allow cleaning crews to focus efforts in buildings where higher traffic and shared spaces are less avoidable.

    Mudd Library: Effective immediately, there will be no physical access to the library except for library and ITS staff. Students and faculty will still have digital access to databases. If you have difficulty accessing library materials electronically, you can reach out to library staff for assistance. They will be ready and willing to lend support. Also, library staff are preparing for a system of “curbside” pickup for needed print materials. The system will involve library staff pulling the materials for you and making them available for pickup. More details to come. While there is no physical access to the library, staff will be on hand from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday to assist as needed. For more information, email reference@lawrence.edu or call 920-832-6750.

    Buchanan Kiewit Wellness Center: Effective immediately, the Wellness Center will be closed to the public. The health center will be accessible by students staying on campus and building staff from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, continuing through Spring Term. The rest of the building will be closed to all. For more information, email wellnessservices@lawrence.edu or call 920-832-6574.

    Warch Campus Center: There will be no public access to the Warch Campus Center. The café will be available from 10 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. for students living on campus, but only for take-out. There will be no in-café dining. Students will go through a line, receive their food in disposable containers and be expected to take it outside or back to their rooms. This food service will be available only to students. Faculty and staff working on campus are expected to bring their own lunch. This process is in place to feed the people who have no other means to get a meal. The Warch Campus Center will not be available as a gathering place as the University follows important CDC and state of Wisconsin guidelines on social distancing. See more from the CDC here.

    Brokaw Hall: Brokaw Central on the first floor of Brokaw Hall (south entrance) will have a cashier available from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Mondays. For cashier needs other than Monday, email financial_services@lawrence.edu. For financial aid questions, email financial.aid@lawrence.edu. For registrar questions, email registrar@lawrence.edu. Please watch for updates. Offices on the second floor of Brokaw will be closed.

    UPDATED: Alexander Gym: The Athletics Department offices, as well as the gym, weight room, cardio room, auxiliary weight room, and all locker rooms, are closed. The building will be accessible by card-swipe only. The athletic training room will be open to students for scheduled rehabilitation appointments only.

    Thank you for abiding by the campus restrictions shared here. Please watch for updates on the COVID-19 news blog at Lawrence.edu. We will get through this together as we do all we can to keep everyone in our community as safe and healthy as possible.

    Sincerely,

    Office of Communications, on behalf of the COVID-19 Management Team


  • Temporary Financial Procedures for Coronavirus Response | March 19

    Financial Services is modifying some of our usual policies and practices to adapt to pandemic conditions, including the reality that many colleagues are now working from off-campus locations.

    This includes temporary procedures for electronic (email) approvals of invoices, disbursement requests, expense reimbursements, and p-card reports, as well as guidance for handling charges for changed or canceled travel plans.

    For more information see the Financial Services webpage: https://www.lawrence.edu/info/offices/financial_services


  • Facilities update: Library, Wellness Center closed; access to Warch and Alex limited | March 19

    As Lawrence continues to make efforts to mitigate the spread of COVID-19, several campus closures are going into effect today. Students, faculty, and staff who are on campus will have no or limited access to the following:

    Mudd Library: Effective immediately, there will be no physical access to the library except for library staff. Students and faculty will still have digital access to databases. If you have difficulty accessing library materials electronically, you can reach out to library staff for assistance. They will be ready and willing to lend support. Also, library staff are preparing for a system of “curbside” pickup for needed print materials. The system will involve library staff pulling the materials for you and making them available for pickup. More details to come. While there is no physical access to the library, staff will be on hand from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday to assist as needed. For more information, email reference@lawrence.edu or call 920-832-6750.

    Buchanan Kiewit Wellness Center: Effective immediately, the Wellness Center will be closed to the public. The health center will be accessible only by students staying on campus and building staff from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday until March 27 and 7:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday beginning March 30 and continuing until the end of Spring Term on June 10. The rest of the building will be closed to all. For more information, email wellnessservices@lawrence.edu or call 920-832-6574.

    Warch Campus Center: There will be no public access to the Warch Campus Center. The café will be available from 10 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. for students living on campus, but only for take-out. There will be no in-café dining. Students will go through a line, receive their food in disposable containers and be expected to take it outside or back to their rooms. This food service will be available only to students. This process is in place to feed the people who have no other means to get a meal. The Warch Campus Center will not be available as a gathering place as the University follows important CDC and state of Wisconsin guidelines on social distancing.

    Alexander Gym: The Athletics Department offices will be available from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. But the gym, weight room, cardio room, auxiliary weight room, and all locker rooms within Alexander Gym are closed until further notice. The athletic training room will be open to students for scheduled rehabilitation appointments only.

    Sabin House: The kitchen is closed until further notice. The Food Pantry will remain open on March 23, March 25, and March 27 from the hours of 8 a.m.-8 p.m. Additional hours for the Food Pantry over the extended break will be established soon and the most updated details can be found on the Spiritual and Religious Life webpage. Beginning March 21, Sabin House and the Center for Spiritual and Religious Life will be adjusting the access and hours through Spring Term. The building will be open 8 a.m.-8 p.m. daily with swipe access only, and usage will be limited to the first floor with social distancing fully encouraged. Sabin House will be closed to the public.  

    More information will be coming soon. Please watch for updates on the COVID-19 news blog at Lawrence.edu.


  • Student Employment Update | March 19

    Thank you for your patience as we navigated the topic of student employment for spring term. We are happy to share the following information: 

    Students Remaining on the Lawrence Campus

    All students remaining on the Lawrence campus for spring break and spring term will be eligible to work in their current or other open student jobs. Open on-campus student jobs will be posted to Handshake.

    Students Leaving the Lawrence Campus

    The University will allow students to continue working in their campus jobs while engaged in distance learning away from the Appleton campus. A student must receive approval to continue working from their direct supervisor and the leader of the office or department, if that individual is different. Supervisors should create a plan for the work the student will be engaged and establish the methods and frequency of checking-in. While employed remotely, students will continue to report time worked and be compensated through the University’s payroll system.     

    International Students

    International students on an F1 visa, who are maintaining status, are eligible to participate in campus-based employment regardless of where they are residing.  This authorization could be subject to change if SEVP (Student Exchange Visitor Program) publishes additional guidance.    

    Take care of yourself and each other.


  • Staff and Faculty Update from HR Director, Tina Harrig | March 18

    Dear Colleagues,

    Thank you to our community, who has rallied to address the University’s needs as we navigate this difficult and ever-evolving situation.

    I am writing today to provide some additional information about University operations in light of the COVID-19 outbreak, including information regarding telecommuting and flexible work schedules, personal travel, and other important information about our workplace.

    At this time, the University remains open to support the students who are on campus for spring break and spring term and the academic enterprise. We also need to ensure that the University can execute its standard operations in this new environment. 

    University Operations

    While the University is open, we recognize that the physical staffing in many offices and departments will look different in the coming weeks, as individual staff members will need to make decisions about their personal work schedules. Supervisors will work with their staff to ensure that their area remains operational during University business hours, while addressing the needs of each employee.

    In light of the changes to our student population on campus, responsibilities assigned to positions may change. Your supervisor will work with you as necessary to ensure that you are aware of any adjustments. You may also be asked to help support areas of campus where a greater need exists.

    At this time, the University is working to limit access to the campus buildings and facilities to reduce the opportunity for community spread. Campus visitors such as business associates, non-Lawrence employee professional colleagues, and personal contacts should avoid coming to campus. It is recommended that necessary meetings transition to conference calls or video meetings. Discussions around access to campus buildings and other resources are currently underway and more information will be shared with you once it becomes available.

    Employee Necessities

    As personal circumstances arise in this fluid environment, the University will continue to be flexible. Work options will be different for individual employees depending on their position, and all employees are encouraged to talk with their supervisor about their specific needs. Potential flexible work options to consider include:

    ·         Telecommuting (or working from home);

    • Using accrued time off in either full- or partial-day increments;
    • Temporarily reducing your full time equivalent (FTE);
    • Adopting a flexible schedule, e.g. working hours or days of the week that are not routine for your position.

    Other options may be suitable for your position as well, and again, we encourage you to work with your supervisor to create a plan that best suits your individual situation and the needs of the office and department. The timeframe for these flexible arrangements does not have a determined end date at this time and this may vary by office or department, however as the situation evolves we may have a better idea of what this will look like.

    As the academic enterprise is the core of our mission, Information Technology Services is working around the clock to prepare our faculty and students for distance learning. They are prioritizing their time, services, and technology accordingly. That said, we also recognize that staff may need to work remotely and will potentially need assistance making these arrangements. If you do need assistance, please contact the Help Desk, and they will assist you when they are able. 

    If you do not have personal technology to support telecommuting, the University provides an interest-free computing device loan option that may be used to purchase necessary technology, including personal computers, tablets, or related equipment to facilitate distance work. The loan request form detailing this process can be found here

    Social Distancing

    We want to support our global efforts to reduce community spread of the coronavirus, which includes efforts to minimize individual contact with each other. For those individuals who are unable to work remotely, either because of your job responsibilities, you are essential personnel, or your personal situation, you may continue to work on campus at this time while also practicing these social distancing measures:

    ·         Maintain at least six feet between you and another individual.

    ·         Avoid public transportation whenever possible.

    ·         Limit non-essential travel.

    ·         Limit social gatherings and avoid crowded venues.

    ·         Practice good hygiene, disinfect surfaces you touch, and avoid touching your face.

    While these times require physical distance to prevent the spread of COVID-19, we still remain a community. It is more important than ever that we remain connected to one another, even through virtual means. The LU Insider will continue on its regular schedule and strive to connect us all, wherever we may physically be. 

    Health & Wellness

    We strongly encourage you to be informed and observant of the symptoms of COVID-19, such as fever, cough, and shortness of breath. It is critical that employees do not report to work while they are experiencing these symptoms. Currently, the CDC recommends that employees remain at home until at least 24 hours after they are free of fever (100 degrees F or 37.8 degrees C) or signs of fever without the use of fever-reducing medications.

    For the most up-to-date information, you are encouraged to review the information provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Wisconsin Department of Health Services . If you have questions about your health you are encouraged to discuss those with your personal physician. For individuals covered under the Lawrence University medical plan, the Teledoc service allows you to consult with a doctor 24/7 to evaluate your risk and help with any next steps when necessary all without leaving your home and for a $5 copay. Information on Teledoc can be found in the 2020 benefit guide.         

    Personal Travel

    We strongly advise you to reconsider non-essential personal travel, as documented cases and areas with community spread are growing rapidly. Should you decide to travel, be aware of the risks. Please continue to closely follow the CDC websiteCDC travel alerts, and WI Department of Health Services website for updated guidance. Following your travel, you may not be able to return to campus and may be required to self-isolate. You should inform your supervisor of personal travel plans and if you experience any symptoms of COVID-19. Your supervisor will work with Health Services and Human Resources to assess campus risk.   

    Employee Assistance Program

    In times of uncertainty, such as we are currently experiencing with the coronavirus, there are often many questions and concerns about how what is happening will affect you and your loved ones. These situations can often lead to heightened feelings of stress and anxiety. Remember that your employee assistance program (EAP) is available to you, your dependents, and immediate household members. Our EAP provider can be contacted at 1-800-222-8590 and additional information can be found online.

    As we all know, this situation is fluid and is changing daily, even hourly. We will keep you informed of any new developments as soon as possible, and we encourage you to visit the COVID-19 News blog for the most recent updates. 

    During this challenging time, I encourage us to reach out and support each other. Lawrence has always been a community that takes care of one another, and I know that, together, we will meet the challenges that lie ahead.

    Take care,

    Tina

    Tina Harrig

    Director of Human Resources