Housing Policies and Restrictions Related to COVID-19
Please note that these policies remain a working draft. They are subject to change at any time based on changing health policies or best practices. Final policies will be available prior to the first Move-In Day.
McDaniel College is committed to protecting the health and safety of all members of our campus community and minimizing the potential spread of disease on the campus. In response to the current health crisis and in accord with public health guidance, the below policies and guidelines are incorporated in addition to the housing and dining agreement and are applicable to all residential students. As always, McDaniel will endeavor to update you with timely information about specific health and safety guidance important for our residential students and reserves the right to modify these guidelines if it becomes necessary.
Students are required to comply with health and safety laws, orders, ordinances, regulations and health and safety guidance adopted by the State of Maryland, local Health Department, and McDaniel College as it relates to the COVID-19 crisis. These guidelines will evolve as the public health crisis evolves and may include, but are not limited to, social distancing, limitations on group gatherings, COVID-19 diagnostic and surveillance testing, contact tracing, wearing a face covering, disinfection protocols, limitations on guests into residence halls, and quarantine/ isolation requirements. Adherence to health and safety requirements applies to all residents, staff and visitors and extends to all aspects of residential life, including bedrooms, bathrooms, lounges, outdoor spaces, and other common spaces.
Students are strongly encouraged to review the Student Exposure and Testing Protocols which will be sent out in the near future.
The responsibility for maintaining the health and safety of all community members is a shared one. If you become aware of instances where these policies are not being followed, please make sure to notify a resident assistant, area coordinator or other relevant staff member.
Student Housing Policies
Health and Safety
The College expects that all members of the campus community act in a manner that demonstrates respect and consideration for those around them, including respect and consideration for the health and safety of all community members.
- Students will live in single or double rooms. Students will not be housed in triples or quads.
- Residents of apartments, houses, and the Daniel MacLea (DMC) suites will be treated like an individual groups/family unit in regard to quarantining.
- All residential students are prohibited from creating a health or safety hazard within housing and on the campus. The College may request or require a resident to leave housing and/or the campus if they pose a health or safety risk for community members.
- Residents are required to wear a face covering when present inside all campus buildings. The only exception is when they are in their individual room, community bathroom, apartment or house.
- If campus residents begin to develop any COVID-19 symptoms, they are required to contact the Wellness Center, on week days between 8:30am – 4:30pm, or the Department of Campus Safety, after 4:30pm on week days and on weekends, so immediate medical follow-up can occur to determine if diagnostic testing is necessary.
Quarantine / Isolation
At any time, the College may require a resident to leave housing when that resident’s continued presence in the housing community poses a health or safety risk for community members. Residential students are required to comply with directions to leave their assigned space due to COVID-19 or other public health emergency. Failure to do so is a violation of the Code of Student Conduct and may subject a student to immediate removal from campus housing and/or the campus
- Not all residential spaces are appropriate for quarantine or isolation. If a student is required to self-quarantine or self-isolate and is not permitted to do so in their residential space, they will be provided alternative housing arrangements. Temporary relocation from a housing assignment in order to isolate or quarantine does not constitute a termination of a residential student’s housing and dining agreement.
- While quarantined or isolated, meals will be provided for students who have purchased a dining plan. There will also be frequent check-ins by phone with college staff members including medical staff.
- For a resident who is required to self-quarantine or self-isolate, the length of the quarantine/isolation will be determined by a medical professional.
- For apartments, houses and DMC, if an individual tests positive for Covid-19, the other residents will all be required to quarantine.
Dining services, including where and how it will be offered to residential students, is subject to the discretion of the College and is subject to modification to address public health concerns. Due to health and safety guidance adopted by McDaniel College, the occupancy of Englar Dining Hall (GLAR) will be reduced to adhere to social distancing and indoor dining guidelines.
- Dining Services may limit the amount of time students may dine within GLAR or make other operational adjustments needed to address health and safety concerns.
- Residents will be expected to sign up for the time and location of each meal.
McDaniel will continue to implement and modify its cleaning protocols to address COVID-19 or other public health emergencies in the interest of minimizing the spread of disease. The College will educate and inform residential students on the appropriate cleaning protocols within their assigned spaces to reduce the possibility of the spread of COVID-19 within campus housing.
- Residents will be assigned to a specific shower stall, bathroom stall and sink to use in order to limit exposure to COVID-19.
- Residents will be expected to and instructed how to wipe down specific surfaces in their assigned shower, bathroom stall and sink after each use. Cleaning supplies and instructions will be found in each bathroom.
- Residents should minimize the time spent in all shared bathrooms.
- No cell phone use is permitted in shared bathrooms to minimize the spread of germs.
- Personal items should not be stored in community bathrooms in residence halls.
- Cleaning schedules will be communicated to students during the first days of the semester.
Residential Guest Guidelines
In order to minimize contact that occurs among individuals inside the campus residences and therefore the potential spread of COVID-19, the only individuals permitted in an individual room, apartment, suite or house are the residents assigned to those spaces.
- Residents may not host off-campus guests in any campus building.
- Residents will wear a face covering when present inside all campus buildings. The only exception is when they are in their individual room, community bathroom, apartment or house.
- Residence hall lounges will be closed to students because of the difficulty of social distancing in these locations.
Students who selected a room during the recent room selection process were informed that they did so provisionally. Residential students are required to comply with any de-densifying efforts needed on campus due to COVID-19 or other public health emergency, including, but not limited to, the relocation of all or some residential students to alternative housing. Relocation does not constitute a termination of the housing and dining agreement.
- Based on the need to set aside beds to be used for students when they may need to live in a quarantined area or if student housing needs surpass McDaniel’s housing capacity, additional housing spaces near campus may be utilized.
- Room Change Requests - There will not be an open Room Change Day at the start of the semester. Room change requests can be made to the Office of Residence Life at firstname.lastname@example.org
To minimize the exposure of residents to COVID-19:
Residents are strongly ENCOURAGED to:
- Keep a list of people and locations you visit each week.
- Remain on the campus and/or in the Westminster area.
- Bring only essential belongings to campus. In the event of a closure due to COVID-19, there may be limited notice for students to prepare for a departure from campus.
Residents are strongly DISCOURAGED from:
- Leaving the campus to visit family and friends. This increases the likelihood of exposure to infectious individuals and locations.
- Entering off-campus/non-college residences, especially if large groups of individuals may be gathering there.
In the event of a conflict between the fall 2020 Enhanced Public-Health Informed Housing Policies and the existing policies outlined in the 2020-21 Student Handbook, these Policies will apply.