March 12, 2020 Update

Left Nav

Dear Berry Community,

It certainly has been a memorable Spring Break week as our nation grapples with the spread of the Coronavirus (COVID19).

As you probably know, in an effort to curtail the spread of the virus, a number of colleges and universities have decided this week to close their residential campuses for the foreseeable future.

Berry’s situation is different from many others in that our campus is relatively self-contained, with an option for restricted access, and in a location that is less densely populated. For the time being we will opt to remain open, keeping two principles in mind: How do we best ensure the health and safety of our campus community, and how do we best ensure the continuity of our core educational programs?

As you plan your return to campus, please understand that it will not be business as usual. We are implementing strong safeguards for the health and safety of our community, and will limit access to campus beginning this weekend. For the safety of our community, we will screen all returning students for symptoms as they arrive to campus.

Let me provide some important details:

  1. Students should plan to return to campus on Sunday, March 15th, between noon and 8pm. You will be directed to the Cage Center parking lot where there will be a brief screening process related to symptoms and recent travel. If you are unable to return to campus on Sunday between noon and 8pm, please email the Dean of students. It will be necessary for you to check in at the Welcome Center.
  2. It is vital that you be alert to your own health. If you develop a fever and symptoms of respiratory illness, such as cough or difficulty breathing, please do not return to campus. Instead, contact your health care provider immediately and isolate yourself at home until cleared by a medical professional.
  3. If you traveled to locations where the CDC has issued a Level 3 Warning against nonessential travel or to any location with sustained community spread, you should also choose to self-isolate at home. The CDC recommends you stay home for 14 days from the time you left a high-risk area.
  4. In coming weeks, our priority will be our core educational mission: that is, completing course requirements for the semester. To that end, faculty will prepare options to ensure course completion should students or faculty be unable to participate in regular class sessions. Faculty will develop various remote or on-line learning options.
  5. Meanwhile, all large public events will be cancelled through the end of March, and public access to campus through the main entrance will be limited.
  6. On-campus events for the college community will be evaluated on an ongoing basis. As much as possible, events and functions will incorporate measures that encourage “social distancing” and limit person-to-person contact.
  7. Athletic events and participation are scheduled to continue for now, but there may be restrictions related to attendance.
  8. The dining hall will implement changes that restrict self-serve options to minimize use of common utensils. Extra cleaning protocols have been implemented across the campus.

The college’s campus planning group continues to monitor the local and national situation on a daily basis and is attentive to guidance from our local and state health departments as well as the CDC. As of today, there are a small number of confirmed cases of the coronavirus in Floyd County.

Since the virus is present in our community, it is important for all of us to be vigilant. We will share information in a timely manner, and we ask for your flexibility in the event we need to act quickly.

Additional information and FAQs will be posted on this website on a regular basis.

Thanks for your cooperation and good will as we enter uncharted territory.

Stay safe and be healthy.

 Back to Top

Footer Menu