Dan Jones, Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance: Director of events and emergency management, and I'll ask him to introduce himself in a moment. If you are watching this live, there should be a link to be able to answer questions on the webpage. We anticipate this panel lasting about a half an hour. We'll get to as many questions as we can this morning but please also continue to consult colorado.edu/coronavirus for updates. I also want to extend a thank you to our faculty, students and staff who are all making sacrifices to uphold the mission of the university as we respond to this global pandemic together. We had originally planned this town hall to answer questions focusing on issues important to students, faculty and staff as they navigate classes and living situations. We will still answer those questions, either in our FAQ or in a forthcoming virtual town hall, but in light of the news yesterday that we have our first presumptive positive Corona COVID-19 case on campus. We knew you probably would have more pressing questions about that.
Yesterday afternoon we learned that a CU Boulder employee did test positive for COVID-19 are cooperating with our county public health which is investigating further details, including the risk of exposure. What we know this morning, we are continuing to work with Boulder County Public Health who will be contacting individuals who have been in contact with this employee and asking them to stay home for 14 days and monitor their health per CDC guidelines. The employee did not work in dining. The employee did not eat in the dining halls on Monday during.. The dining has started cleaning protocols last night, and they've completed those to make sure they are ready for breakfast this morning in the dining halls. We also started cleaning the C4C office and common areas last night. Cleaning will continue through throughout each office over the weekend if necessary.
Dan Jones, Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance: We are already following public health guidance regarding additional cleaning and sanitization steps to prevent further spread of the virus in anticipation of a positive COVID-19 on campus. Our campus began to transition to remote learning and remote working earlier this week. By moving to remote learning and remote work, we believe these actions will substantially reduce the number of contacts per day by students and employees and allow us to minimize the spread of the virus and reduce impact to health services on campus and in the county. For many students, this is their home. They're supported here, learn here and this is where they have access to critical services. For this reason and based on the current information available, we do not believe closing campus is warranted. We are continuing to monitor this evolving situation and we'll take additional actions to protect the health and safety of our community as necessary. For the latest information, we do urge you to continue to check dot dot dot colorado.edu/coronavirus. With that, I'll turn it over to Gary.
Gary DeJong, Emergency Manager: Good morning. My name is Gary Young. I am the emergency manager for CU Boulder. It is my role to minimize the campus's vulnerability to hazards.
Dan Jones, Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance: So with that I'll open it up to questions. We don't anticipate we'll get to everyone's question today, but we will be adding the answer. Continuing to add answers on colorado.edu/corona virus and we continue to encourage you to check there regularly. So, first of all, go to some of the questions that were submitted in advance. We're doing everything we can to proof to promote the campus health and safety while still upholding the university's mission. Most importantly, for many students, again, this is their home. They're supported here, learn here and need to have continued to have access to critical support. I'll put this next question to Gary. How will the security of buildings be insured with fewer people in and out of buildings to oversee occupants, who should not have access and have we considered restricting access to card swipes?
Gary DeJong, Emergency Manager: Excellent. We are aware of this issue as the campus transitions to having fewer employees, staff, and students on campus. We continue to adjust those access capabilities. We are working with our communications people to communicate out and to post updates to building access protocols. Certainly, we urge everyone to visit our website, colorado.edu/coronavirus.
Dan Jones, Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance: I'll take this next question. What would trigger a full campus closure. We continue to monitor the changing situation and guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and the state of Colorado. Our primary goal is to continue to promote social distancing. Another question, how are you protecting people who are still on campus such as facilities management and cleaning staff? Our staff trained in the best practices for cleaning and disinfecting work areas. We also recommend people follow CDC guidance such as washing your hands frequently and not touching your face. What do I do about childcare given K through 12 closures in light of the announcement last night from BVSD and other school districts that they are discontinuing or suspending classes, we want to provide guidance to supervisors, employees who need to be home with their children. Supervisors should be flexible with their employees who have school aged children and allow them to work from home tomorrow as needed in the near future. For those who have been given direction to work from home, please continue to do so as possible. For those whose work must occur on campus. You may. We will continue to provide guidance to supervisors as the situation adjust.
Dan Jones, Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance: Let's go ahead and go to some of the live questions. Did this person work as a cook in a dining hall dining center at C4C? The employee did not work in dining. The employee did not eat in a dining hall as well. We have started to increase cleaning through the building last night. Gary, what is the process for informing people who might have been exposed to someone who later test positive?
Gary DeJong, Emergency Manager: Certainly, we have a process for broad notification through our Rave alert system should we have a large-scale exposure. However, for the people who were in contact with this positive patient, the Boulder County Public Health is going through a process to identify those people and making contact with them.
Dan Jones, Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance: Another question for Gary, can you curtail St. Patrick's Day?
Gary DeJong, Emergency Manager: Currently CU Boulder is limiting the events that we are hosting here on campus. The St. Patrick's Day gathering is something that does not take place here, so we are supporting the city in the County of Boulder in the guidance that they have provided and trying to maintain social distancing and not having large gatherings.
Dan Jones, Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance: Are you adding additional staff and resources to support remote instruction? Yes, the university has provided additional technical support and continue to monitor it systems to make sure that they will be in a position to support remote learning. We know that there are additional questions that have been received that are very specific about instruction. Um, and we will be working to post to those at colorado.edu/coronavirus. Gary, what are our plans for commencement?
Gary DeJong, Emergency Manager: Commencement is a very important event for CU Boulder. Um, we're well aware of this. We have ongoing meetings and discussions of what our plans will be for commencement this year. Uh, we are hoping to have that decision and guidance out by the end of next week.
Dan Jones, Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance: Do you think staff will be asked to work remote? Do you think staff will be asked to work remotely for the rest of the semester as well? We don't know for sure. Uh, we are preparing for employees who can work remotely to do so for the remainder of the year. However, next question, what is the direction for student employees who have roles or function that cannot be performed remotely? Are they to report in person? We are working on a transition model and information will be forthcoming. Any employee who can work remotely should do so by Monday if they aren't, if they haven't started that already. Gary can and will research continue?
Gary DeJong, Emergency Manager: Absolutely. Our research programs are very important for a CU Boulder. They have some very different, uh, scheduling dynamics and needs and we continue to work with our research programs in identifying ways to make sure they have the access and the support they need to maintain their research programs.
Dan Jones, Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance: Thank you. Um, I'll go back to some of the prior questions that were submitted. Uh, when will the campus return to normal operations? Uh, we have said we moved to on, uh, we have, as we have said, we have moved to online teaching for the rest of the semester. We are continuing to work with local and state health officials to monitor this situation and hope to return to normal operations as safely as possible. What could trigger a full campus closure? Uh, again, um, we'll continue to monitor and consult with, uh, both the state and local health officials. Uh, and our goal is to right now continue to do what we can to promote social distancing while still supporting the students who are on, uh, who need to be on campus.
Dan Jones, Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance: Uh, another question, uh, will there be study abroad in the fall? Uh, I think it's too early to make that decision that, uh, the education abroad program, uh, is continuing to monitor the situation, um, obviously, uh, abroad and we'll make the decision based on CDC guidance. Will you provide tuition refunds? Um, the campus is continuing to, uh, determine, uh, what types of plans we need to have in terms of, uh, as the situation involves. And, um, this is something, uh, we'll have additional information on in the future. Let's see. Uh, will CU's network crash if everyone is online and taking classes at the same time. We have been reviewing our systems to ensure that we have instruction, that we have the infrastructure in place to support this transition. Um, if needs of greater capacity arise, um, we will work to address that. It's also important to recognize that, um, you know, many of our services are internet based and the technical issues that may come up maybe outside of our control maybe, uh, remotely and for example, in someone's individual computer, um, people can contact, um, the help, uh, our IT help for additional assistance. Uh, who gets an exception for the new travel requirements? It really depends on the reason for the travel, the location and whether that, um, region has COVID-19 cases. We're evaluating those on a case by case basis based on, um, specific circumstance. Will there be coronavirus testing available on our campus? Um, we are presently screening all patients who enter, uh, our health clinic for COVID-19 system, uh, symptoms and their travel history. We are only providing testing for those individuals who have symptoms that aligned with the guidance for the CDC. It's important to remember that the state is still has limited capacity for testing. So, this is the reason why we need to make sure we're, uh, limiting, uh, testing to just those who have symptoms.
Gary DeJong, Emergency Manager: Just wanted to add that the uh, the testing is focused for our student population. Um, and it's not for faculty, staff. Um, they would still be going through their normal primary care practitioner to be evaluated either by phone or in an actual office visit and follow the direction of their primary care practitioner.
Dan Jones, Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance: Okay. A question for Gary. Can I leave the effects? Can I leave my personal belongings in my room planned to move, uh, move virtual from patient's home and then come collect my stuff later?
Gary DeJong, Emergency Manager: Absolutely. We're uh, we're monitoring what several universities around the country are doing and they're setting us separate dates for people to come back and those like prescheduled employments appointments rather similar to what we did for move in. That way we're not having large mass numbers of people coming in at one time or we can coordinate having items shipped back to them. Those discussions are underway. We've not yet finalized that model, but we are working on how we can best facilitate that for the students.
Dan Jones, Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance: Other universities have shut down their dorms and allowed students who have special circumstances to apply for a waiver to stay in them. Why not follow that course of action? Other universe, different universities have different situations based in their communities. We continue to monitor that and it's important to understand that we will continue to adapt our response as the situation changes. If a student wants to move out, do their meals, swipes expire, where can I donate them to swipe it forward? It's an excellent question. I'll take that forward. Uh, and we will work to get an answer to that. Um, online. Uh, Gary, how will you handle students returning from spring break?
Gary DeJong, Emergency Manager: Certainly, we know our students take the opportunity to go out and go to different places, whether it be home or going on vacation. What we're asking them to do is to monitor themselves and let us know where they are returning from. Realizing if there is international travel that is still taking place. Some of those countries may require you to have a 14 day self-isolation period for you to make sure that you do not develop any of these signs and symptoms before returning back. So, you may be asked to self-quarantine and self-isolate. Um, realizing that we do have all of our learning going remote, so you should still be able to continue your academic coursework without any impacts there.
Dan Jones, Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance: Another question for you, Gary. How are students being supported in managing the stress, anxiety, fear and possible mental health issues related to COVID-19?
Gary DeJong, Emergency Manager: The campus has several programs to access whether it be through, uh, through CAPS, through the resident, uh, through residence life. Um, we encourage people to reach out and seek any advisement that they need because certainly we all handle stress differently and on top of normal course loads, we don't want students being overburdened by this. So, we encourage them to reach out and talk with somebody, find the appropriate platform for them and um, and get the assistance that they might need.
Dan Jones, Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance: Now that another question, now that you've canceled in person classes, students are just going to party. Shouldn't students go home and finish their classes in the safety of their own home in a more controlled environment and how to help limit the spread of virus in our community. Certainly individuals, individual students who feel that the best place for them to continue their studies can certainly go to wherever that location is. It's also important to recognize that um, for those students in the residence halls, there are additional steps that are being taken to ensure their, uh, protection, uh, in including providing additional standardization and cleaning, um, and additional guidance, uh, to keep, uh, keep that guidance in the forefront of their mind. For Gary, how do we best protect each other and workers while at the grocery store? Deliveries and yes, restaurant bars and pubs?
Gary DeJong, Emergency Manager: That's a great question. Um, the guidances from CDC is to avoid large gatherings. Certainly, with social distancing as people have, as you research and you may have heard they recommend a six foot space. I'm realizing just by walking by somebody you are probably not at risk. Certainly, we are asking anybody if you think you have symptoms that may be re related to whether it's COVID-19, the flu or any other cold to not go out into public. Certainly, that would help this. But if you feel you've been exposed or after you've been out in the public, certainly follow the hygiene recommendations, wash your hands, wash your face, maybe change of clothes if you've been out there just to reduce that exposure. That may have occurred.
Dan Jones, Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance: Another, another question. How are you dealing with dorms and out-of-state students? Do students need to stay in Boulder? Um, or can we bring them home? I think this is a good reminder as to why it is, why it's important that the campus needs to continue to main maintain operations because this is their home for many of our students and they need to continue to have support on campus. Um, again, if individual students feel the best place for them to continue their studies, uh, is at home or some other location, um, they should go ahead and, and take those, uh, take whatever actions they feel are necessary while classes are online. Uh, our permits, no, I'm guessing this is parking permits. Um, I will go ahead and, um, we'll take that question and follow up online to get the answer for that. For Gary, since the buildings remain open. Uh, but we'll have far fewer people in them. What additional security steps will we be taking to ensure the security of anyone who in our community who may still come to work such as proctors, library staff.
Gary DeJong, Emergency Manager: Excellent. And certainly, this ties into the, we had earlier in the program and we continually monitor what those population loads are going to be. So, we will manage that with our access protocols, but we are also adjusting work schedules for our community safety officials as they go around and assist with locks and unlocks. We're managing their time for both meeting campus needs as far as having access to our buildings, but also being prudent in reducing their exposure here on campus as well. So, we are, we're working to manage that from both perspectives.
Dan Jones, Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance]=: Okay. Thank you. Uh, we have a question of what will it take to close campus. I think it's important to, for people to remember that, you know, the, the actions that we're taking will, are a continuum as we continue to adjust, uh, the, the, our plans and actions to protect the campus. Um, you know, it can be, you know, there are many services and types of things that need to continue on campus. And so, the concept of closing campus can be as challenging as say, closing a city. Why not hold finals early and finish the semester or like, um, I think it's important, you know, we have an obligation both to our students and as part of accreditation to continue to, uh, ensure that, uh, students get, uh, meaningful, uh, education and meet the educational, um, objectives for their courses. And that's why we're continuing to encourage, uh, online, uh, or sorry, remote learning.
Dan Jones, Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance: Uh, what about real life engineering labs or senior design or research projects that cannot be done online? Um, the individual faculty, uh, are, will be working with their departments to answer these types of questions. We recognize, I don't have all of the answers in terms of how faculty will implement those changes. Um, but we're encouraging faculty to work with their department. Can you please transcribe this town hall and post it online? Absolutely. That is part of the plan. Uh, for Gary, can you describe what is being done in C4C?
Gary DeJong, Emergency Manager: Certainly, last evening as Dan mentioned in the opening day, started doing a cleaning in the area where we felt the patient was in contact with people. They're using disinfecting procedures as outlined by the CDC. Um, it's important to note that it's not just there that that's occurring. We followed up there specifically, but our services staff has started using these processes and these guidance for all of their cleaning practices. So, we have really increased the cleaning processes throughout the campus and then when we have an exposure such as this where we pay additional focus on that area to make sure it is safe for both students and employees.
Dan Jones, Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance: Thank you. If you do close campus, how will you schedule things so as to minimize human contact? Can you answer?
Gary DeJong, Emergency Manager: Well we will certainly follow social distancing guidelines as we close. If we were to close campus, certainly there would be a significant reduction in contact with, with other people. There are certain activities that just need to be done either in an office setting or in a face to face situation. And we certainly recommend people, number one if they are sick, do not show up for that. And then number two, to maintain personal space, the social distancing six feet, try and minimize the length of that interaction and then to follow good hygiene after that.
Dan Jones, Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance: Um, another question for Gary. Uh, aren't the residence halls the most likely place for the virus to spread? We should close them down.
Gary DeJong, Emergency Manager: It certainly the residence halls are an area where we have a congregation of a lot of people, but it's certainly not the only location on campus where that is taking place. We've been focusing on maintaining a good clean environment for our students who are in the residence halls. We've asked them for their help in support of maintaining social distancing and using good hygiene. Right now, the campus is maintaining, keeping the residence halls open, but certainly we are, we're monitoring this fluid situation and we'll make adjustments as appropriate from CU leadership.
Dan Jones, Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance: Thank you. Another question for you, Gary. Uh, are you providing supplies like hand sanitizer or cleaning wipes since all the stores are out?
Gary DeJong, Emergency Manager: We're in the same situation where we're having challenges with the supply chain issue as well. We are certainly focusing on trying to provide the basic needs for everyone. But as this, as this progresses, as you've seen on the media, when you see the shots of Costco or any of the grocery stores or things of that nature, there is a run on all these cleaning supplies and certainly we are impacted by those as well. So, we are doing our best to provide those resources to the campus and the campus community and we'll, and we'll do our best, realizing that that is a challenge. We ask people to use them and use them judiciously. However, we, we've also had some instances where those resources are taken to other locations or off campus and we just ask people to be respectful of those resources. And those are the activities that were taking place right now.
Dan Jones, Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance: Uh, thank you, uh, for Gary. Uh, what will happen for a PhD or MS students who rely on lab access if it comes to the point that all buildings must close?
Gary DeJong, Emergency Manager: It certainly, that's a combined question of access control as well as back to the academic process of uh, what is being required by their academic advisors or professors. And they need to work individually with those because as Daniel alluded to earlier, there's accreditation standards that need to be meet to meet met. Excuse me. And there are, there are other intricacies there that we're just not aware of and they need to work closely with their, uh, with their professors and advisors.
Dan Jones, Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance: And I'll add that, um, CDC guidelines have been clear that while they're encouraging, um, universities to move to remote teaching, that does not preclude faculty correct for example, in coming into their office and working from there. Uh, you know, you can do that and still maintain social distancing. Um, can you please, uh, explain the employee guidelines again so to, to make it simple today, employees who can work from home should continue to do so. If you've been asked by your supervisor to come into work, please do so, so that you can continue to support campus operations that are needed for our employees, for both our employees and especially for our students. For Gary. Uh, will the rec center close?
Gary DeJong, Emergency Manager: Um, each individual facility is discussed on a case by case basis. We will certainly work with the rec center and see what the needs are for their hours and with the, uh, the student population that is on campus. Um, certainly we've encouraged them to up their game in regards to the, the cleaning process, just like any other facility. So, we're trying to maintain that the facilities that are open are safe for people to go into and we want them to know that it is safe and we encourage people to use the facilities and we have to make changes to the campus operations.
Dan Jones, Associate Vice Chancellor for Integrity, Safety and Compliance: Okay. Uh, we will go, we will have to leave it here for today. Again, we'll make every effort to, uh, update the FAQ, uh, online, uh, with additional questions that we may not have been able to answer today. Um, we will, um, encourage you to continue to check, uh, dot dot dot colorado.edu/coronavirus um, that site is changing daily. Um, thank you all for watching, uh, this, uh, virtual town hall and thank you all for, uh, the questions. I also want to express my gratitude to of CU Boulder's faculty, staff and students. We recognize that mitigating the spread of the Corona virus will require significant work flexibility and creativity from our community.
I'm Dan Jones. Thank you for watching today.