Rowan College To Offer In-Person, Remote Learning This Fall

BURLINGTON COUNTY, NJ — Rowan College at Burlington County will offer a limited number of on-campus courses this fall as the college prepares to reopen amid the coronavirus pandemic.

At the same time, the college said it will offer new types of online courses to increase engagement in the course while reducing the number of people on campus. For those who are on campus, measures will be in place to reduce the risk of spreading the coronavirus, according to the college’s website.

The college submitted a plan to the state on July 7 so that it could reopen its labs for summer courses. Officials said many of the details for the fall reopening plan were included in the submission, but those plans could change as they hear from the community and the pandemic evolves.

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All students, faculty, staff and visitors will be required to wear face coverings when social distancing is not possible. Everyone will be responsible for bringing their own face coverings, but the college will be able to provide them if they deem one to be insufficient or if a student or staff member has forgotten their own face covering.

The college said every effort will be made to create reduced density groups in the workspace, classroom and common areas. Wellness monitoring will be used for identifying those who are affected and to provide mitigation for their needs.

The Burlington County Health Department will coordinate and conduct contact tracing to help limit the spread of the virus. Course scheduling will allow for downtime between classes for cleaning and disinfecting.

The college will use a Clorox 360 sanitizing machine, and 12 portable backpack electrostatic disinfectant sprayers to aid in the overall disinfecting efforts. Special attention will be given to areas that require the most touching such as doorknobs, elevators and handrails, among other areas.

Plexiglass barriers are being installed to create a physical barrier between students in the classroom, on service desks such as public safety stations and reception areas, as well as in the library, computer labs, bookstore and other public areas on campus.

Handheld infrared thermometers will be used to conduct temperature checks on arriving students and staff. A mobile application will be used to ensure on-campus students, staff and guests have performed a self-check for symptoms.

The original fall 2020 schedule has been segmented into several elements, which include term, location, building, start time, and occupancy, according to the college. The college community was notified of these changes at the end of June.

STEM, Liberal Arts and Health Sciences will make use of dedicated learning spaces. Health Sciences will use an alternating schedule in order to reduce student density. Classes will be split into two groups and alternate between on-site and virtual attendance.

College officials said they will provide sanitization and social distancing training through the use of technology. All students, faculty and staff will be required to watch an instructional video before they arrive at campus.

Electronic messaging boards, physical signs and social media messaging will include health advisory public service announcements about self-monitoring for symptoms of the virus, social distancing and sanitary techniques.

Upon arrival, visitors will be directed to these educational resources. Managed ingress and egress routes will be defined in accordance with building floor plans and class scheduling and will be clearly marked and enforced.

All meetings of students and staff should be limited to adhere to the guidelines determined by the state and all should be encouraged to utilize available remote meeting technology

The library will be opened with social distancing guidelines in place. The library will be cleaned and disinfected on a rigorous schedule. Sanitization stations will be available at the entrance and exit of the library, and disinfecting supplies will be available to students and staff in order to help facilitate disinfecting of all distributed library materials. Signs will be posted to inform users to disinfect the materials before and after each use. Common areas within the library will be closed off.

The library will use a sign-up system in order to allow for equal use by all and priority will be given to those who do not have internet access at home. Curbside pickup will only be utilized on a case by case situation based on the needs of the customer.

Sanitization stations will be available at the entrance and exit of the computer labs. Disinfecting supplies will be available to students and staff in order to help facilitate disinfecting of the computer labs and workspace by those who use it. Signs will be posted to inform users to disinfect the computer before and after each use.

Computer labs will use a sign-up system in order to allow for equal use by all, and preference will be given to those that do not have internet access at home.

All student services are available through virtual appointments. Students will use the college’s website to connect with department resources or request a virtual appointment.

The college will not provide food service operations at the outset of the 2020 fall semester. A modified operation will be developed and a plan will be submitted to the state that will lay out the safety precautions and other measures that will be put in place, 14 days before implementation, for review and approval.

All travel for college business will be temporarily prohibited until further notice. Any students or staff returning from out-of-state or international travel may be required to self-isolate for 14 days, in accordance with state guidelines. RCBC does not currently participate in any study abroad programs.

The college bookstore will re-open to the public on Aug. 10. In order to serve the college community safely, bookstore capacity will be reduced by 50 percent to allow for social distancing.

Online shopping and early ordering are strongly encouraged and promoted. The side entrance is designated for in-store pick up of online orders and access materials. The exterior shipping and receiving door will be used for Health Sciences related material pick up. All faculty and staff purchases will be by appointment only.

For more, visit the college’s website.

See more stories about New Jersey’s coronavirus recovery.

This article originally appeared on the Cinnaminson Patch

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