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Taking Classes On Campus Guide

UMass Lowell is committed to keeping our community safe while providing high quality education and services to our students. This guide provides information for all students. 

GUIDING PRINCIPLES

  1. We will keep the safety and health of our community as our top priority.
  2. We will provide the fullest academic and campus life experience possible.
  3. We will rely on members of our community to act responsibly.
  4. We will act on new information promptly.

Classes, Labs & Instruction

Closeup on woman's hands typing on laptop placed on crosslegged legs

We will continue to operate classes safely according the latest guidance from state health officials. 

Instructional spaces will be cleaned daily; students and instructors should clean personal surfaces before and after each use with cleaning kits supplied in each room.

Criteria for Return to All Remote Learning

UMass Lowell will continue to follow the guidance of public health authorities and state officials and revert to all virtual learning if deemed necessary to protect the safety of our community. Instructors will be prepared to take any course to an all-online format.

Academic Support Services

Academic Testing CentersThe Testing Centers will be closed. We are exploring online proctoring services for students with a testing accommodation. 

Advising: Academic Advising will be delivered virtually through Skype, Zoom or phone. 

Bookstore: The River Hawk Shop is open with restrictions in place. 

Libraries: The university libraries is offering services virtually. Our librarians have created a Libguide curated by subject matter that lists free textbooks available through the libraries. 

Thesis and Dissertation Defenses: Defenses will take place virtually.

Tutoring: Tutoring provided through the Centers for Learning will be available to all students through Zoom. 

Student Services

Recruiters from Intralox talk to a student during the virtual career fair

Consult the webpages linked below for each area for specific and up-to-date information.

Campus Recreation is open to residential students only, by reservation.

Career & Co-op Center is open with meetings, services and events offered virtually.

Community Relations is available by email and Zoom and can help navigate resources and opportunities in the city of Lowell (i.e., businesses open and their hours; volunteer or connect to an off-campus nonprofit, etc.).

Counseling Services is providing teletherapy services via HIPAA compliant Zoom. Please call 978-934-6800, Monday-Friday to make an appointment. When requesting an appointment, please provide you name, student ID number and a phone number where you are able to receive and retrieve messages. Students can also access a crisis counselor any time day or night by calling 855-890-2879.  

Dining operations are designed to support safety protocols and social distancing.

Disability Services is providing services through Zoom. Students can make appointment via email at disability@uml.edu or calling 978-934-4574 Monday-Friday. When requesting an appointment, please provide you name, student ID number and a phone number where you are able to receive and retrieve messages. Register for accommodations 

Food Pantry is operating an online ordering/no-contact pick up service due to the building closures as a result of COVID-19. order available food, toiletries, paper goods, school supplies, etc. When your order is fulfilled and ready for pickup you will receive an email regarding when and where to pick up your bagged items. 

Health Services is providing telehealth services via HIPAA compliant Zoom. Please call 978-934-6800, Monday-Friday to make an appointment. When requesting an appointment, please provide your name, student ID number and a phone number where you are able to receive and retrieve messages. Health Services staff will work with students to arrange an in person visit if needed based on the outcome of a telehealth appointment.  

Multicultural Affairs is providing services through phone, email, Skype and Zoom, and will offer limited face-to-face service delivery available when it is safe to do so.

Residence Life is open with modified housing occupancy. 

Student Affairs Office is open with meetings, services and events offered virtually. 

Student Conduct is providing services through phone, email, Skype and Zoom, and will offer limited face-to-face service delivery available when it is safe to do so.

Student Activities & Leadership is holding a combination of modified in-person and virtual activities crafted with public health guidelines in mind. 

Study Abroad will not take place due to worldwide health and travel restrictions. Students interested in study abroad may consult with the Study Abroad office via Zoom.

Support Our Students is providing services through phone, email, Skype and Zoom, and will offer limited face-to-face service delivery available when it is safe to do so.

The Solution Center is providing services through phone and email and will offer limited face-to-face service delivery available when it is safe to do so.

UML Police Department provides services 24 hours a day, 7 days a week through phone, email or in person. UMLPD is located in University Crossing on the Salem Street side of the building. UMLPD’s main phone number is 978-934-2398, emergency phone number is 978-934-4411, email is Police@uml.edu.

Veterans Services is providing services through phone, email, Skype and Zoom, and will offer limited face-to-face service delivery available when it is safe to do so.

Guidance for Students While on Campus

Class and Labs

On-campus courses will be scheduled to allow for time between classes for recommended classroom cleaning protocols, including cleaning and disinfecting of high touch areas. Students may be asked to wipe down spaces they occupy during class. Lab participants will be required to clean their work areas more thoroughly at the end of each class session. All students and faculty will be expected to follow safety protocols as recommended by the university based on CDC and state guidelines. 

Meals

Before and after eating, you should wash your hands thoroughly to reduce the potential transmission of the virus. 

Use of Common Areas/Lounges/Study Areas/Student Spaces

Only use spaces designated as open and follow posted guidelines for use of space.

Using Restrooms

Follow posted guidelines. Wash your hands thoroughly afterward to reduce the potential transmission of the virus.  See the “Returning to the Residence Halls” guide for specific information about residence hall common bathroom usage.

Using Elevators

Wash your hands or use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol upon departing the elevator.

Meetings/Gatherings

Convening in groups may increase the risk of viral transmission. Where feasible, meetings and gatherings of any kind should be held in whole or part using the extensive range of available collaboration tools (e.g. Zoom, WebEx, Microsoft Teams, telephone, etc.).

In person meetings are limited to the restrictions of local, state and federal guidelines. 

During your time on campus, you are encouraged to communicate with others by email, instant message, telephone or other available technology rather than face-to-face. You can also use a range of available collaboration tools (e.g. Zoom, WebEx, Microsoft Teams, Jabber, etc.).

Campus Transportation

Campus Transportation is closed for summer and will reopen for the fall semester.

Visit Campus Transportation for latest information and hours of operation.

Parking for Students

Student parking policies will be in place for the fall semester with some changes. 

Visit UCard, Access & Parking Services for more information and order permit.

Mental and Emotional Wellbeing

Counseling Services

UMass Lowell Counseling Services (UMLCS) is available for teletherapy support, assistance and counseling in this difficult time to help our students navigate challenges, persevere and succeed. Individual and group teletherapy services are available via video, or phone when video is unavailable. To request a counseling session, call the Wellness Center at 978-934-6800 or e-mail counseling@uml.edu during regular business hours. Please provide you name, student ID number, and a phone number where you are able to receive and retrieve messages.

Students can also access a crisis counselor any time day or night by calling 855-890-2879.

UMatter2

You matter to UMass Lowell and the university is committed to supporting your overall health and wellbeing. UMatter2 serves to educate our campus community and connect one another to support our students’ mental health and wellbeing. Visit the UMatter2 website or Instagram for more information and resources to offer support, manage stress and enhance your resilience. #UMatter2UML

How We Keep Our Community Safe

Personal Prevention Practices - Protect Yourself, Protect Others

The goals for using mitigation strategies in communities with local COVID-19 transmission are to slow the transmission of the disease and to protect the UML campus and surrounding Lowell community. The more an individual interacts with others, and the longer that interaction, the higher the risk of COVID-19 spread. These strategies should be implemented at all times.

Coronavirus (COVID-19) is an illness caused by a virus that can spread from person to person. COVID-19 symptoms can range from mild (or no symptoms) to severe illness and is primarily spread by respiratory droplets released when people talk, cough, or sneeze. Though unlikely to cause infection, it is thought that the virus may spread to hands from a contaminated surface and then to the nose or mouth, causing infection.  Using personal prevention practices is important to lower the risk of COVID-19 exposure and spread. 

Face Coverings

While face coverings will remain an option for any individual, they will no longer be mandatory indoors or outdoors beginning May 29, consistent with updated public health guidance. Non-vaccinated individuals are advised to continue wearing face coverings. 

Handwashing

Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, sneezing, or touching your face. If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth, and wash your hands before and after touching your face.

Coughing/Sneezing Hygiene

When you cough or sneeze always cover your mouth and nose with the inside of your elbow or a tissue if available. Throw used tissues in the trash. Immediately wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, clean your hands with a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.

Personal Disinfection

While facilities crews will continue to clean common spaces based on CDC guidelines, we all will play a role in taking additional care to wipe down commonly used surfaces. Follow posted instructions about disinfection in common use and high touch areas. Also, clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces. Don’t share items such as food, drinks, utensils, vapes, or similar items.  

Stay at Home When You Are Sick

It is important to stay physically distant from others when sick to reduce the transmission of disease. If you are sick, stay home to reduce exposure and transmission of the illness onto other individuals in the community. Students should notify their health care provider or the Wellness Center if they are experiencing symptoms first - and then notify the Wellness Center if they have not done so already to update their health record. Residential students should contact the Wellness Center and the Residence Life staff for their residence hall/area if they feel ill so they can be supported while they remain in their room and minimize contact with others.  

Symptom Monitoring Requirements

Students who return to campus must conduct symptom monitoring every day prior to coming to campus or leaving their residence hall room. You must be free of ANY symptoms potentially related to COVID-19 or have had an evaluation and clearance by Health Services to be eligible to report to class or participate in any other activity on campus.  At this time, these symptoms include one or more of the following:

  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fever
  • Chills (repeated shaking with chills)
  • Runny nose or new sinus congestion
  • Muscle pain
  • Headache
  • Sore throat
  • Fatigue
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Other less common symptoms have been reported, including gastrointestinal symptoms like nausea, vomiting, diarrhea or foot sores

If you have any symptoms, always wear a face mask to avoid possible virus transmission to others. You should first contact your health care provider. After calling your health care provider, you must also call the Wellness Center hotline to notify them of your symptoms.  A health care professional from Health Services will contact you shortly. You should self-isolate until cleared by Health Services.

While a monitoring app is not required, several options exist to help gauge symptoms.

Take the COVID-19 Self Checker

Testing

A student takes a testing swab from a student EMT Photo by Tory Wesnofske

Weekly surveillance testing is required for all residential students and is expected for all commuter students, faculty and staff who are on campus. This step exceeds all current Centers for Disease Control recommendations.

Testing for any students who exhibit symptoms will be available through the Wellness Center. Symptomatic faculty and staff should contact their healthcare providers for testing. 

Surveillance testing is conducted among populations who are not showing symptoms in an effort to identify potential cases early and quickly isolate them before the virus can spread. UMass Lowell has partnered with the Broad Institute, a biomedical research center affiliated with MIT and Harvard University.

  • Tests will be self-administered and are minimally invasive. The individual being tested will collect the sample themselves by inserting a swab that looks like a “q-tip” just as far as the bottom of the cotton tip into one of their own nostrils, rotate it around the sides of the nostril for 15 seconds, and then use the swab to repeat the same procedure in the other nostril. 
  • Surveillance testing will be conducted by the university at no cost to individuals. 
  • Results will be shared via email as quickly as possible, with results typically expected within 24 to 48 hours. Residential students who test positive will follow their isolation plan. Contract tracing to identify exposed individuals will be undertaken in partnership with the Department of Public Health.
  • Results will only be shared with the Department of Public Health if the test is positive. This is protected health information and will not be shared with parents of students or other campus community members. Read more about contact tracing.
  • Testing does not replace or reduce the importance of social distancing, wearing face coverings, washing hands, isolation or quarantine.
Detailed surveillance testing program information. 

Contact Tracing

The role of the university in contact tracing can be characterized as supportive. The statutory responsibilities of local public health are to initiate and lead contact tracing. As a reminder, a close contact is defined as someone who was closer than six feet from you for longer than 15 minutes.  

Our role as an organization, if requested by local public health or the Contact Tracing Collaborative (CTC), is to clarify the scope of contact a student or staff member might have had while on campus. Local public health authorities may also contact the university if there are unusual and/or alarming levels of disease requiring more intensive investigations and accompanying interventions. The status of an employee's or student’s health is considered protected health information and will not be shared with the community in a manner that would violate the right to privacy of that community member.  

Health Services will support the symptom assessment review and the logistics of placing a student in isolation and quarantine when a positive case is identified in our student population. This will be recorded by Health Services in the manner of other protected health information.