The COVID-19 procedures and guidelines for the University of La Verne may be hard to understand, however there are plans and contingencies in place designed to keep us all safe and on campus without minimal disruption.
The University of La Verne has implemented the La Verne Safe Return Plan which consists of 34 pages, regarding the guidelines for the prevention and containment of the coronavirus on campus, including dormitories and academic structures. This plan is found at the COVID-19 dashboard on the University website.
Various rules and policies include mandatory masking and vaccination though students can request exemptions to these regulations for medical, religious, ADA, or other reasons, via student services, and faculty may request exemptions via the office of human resources.
Students and employees are required to report any symptoms they may feel and are encouraged to get tested for the coronavirus. Symptoms include fever, coughing, and shortness of breath. If they receive and report a positive test result, a contact tracing team will identify where they were and send a notification to the people who may have been exposed.
“I trust that (most) everyone is vaccinated,” said Mckenzie Marchan, a psychology doctorate program student. “The University kind of facilitated that.” Though Marchan added that she’d like to see more transparency overall so she knows if and when any case of COVID has been identified.
To report exposure to the coronavirus, one must fill out a coronavirus information form that is a part of the University of La Verne COVID-19 dashboard. The form asks for your contact information, “involved parties” or people you may have been around and questions regarding your history with the virus. It also asks for vaccine status, and other related questions.
Those who have known exposure, vaccinated or not, should contact the health center for a COVID test.
“After an exposure in a classroom, faculty members will work with their deans to determine whether the class should continue to meet in person, with the understanding that some students may be out due to quarantine, or if the students would be better served by taking the whole class remote for a limited time period,” said Alison Vicroy, COVID-19 compliance officer and assistant general counsel.
As of Sept. 5, there have been 16 confirmed cases of infected students on the main La Verne campus, as well as 2 infected employees.
Juan Regalado, chief student affairs officer, said that 91% of undergrads at the ULV were compliant with the vaccination policy, meaning they have reported their vaccination status.
Among athletes, who must adhere to a stricter NCAA vaccination requirement, 99% are compliant, Regalado said.He said that this demonstrates optimism among students, who are glad to be back in person.
“I just believe that they are doing what they can right now, as of right now I don’t think they can do much besides just trying to prevent it from spreading,” said Alejandro Castillo Olmos, sophomore English major.
Olmos said that he did not initially expect many changes on campus from before COVID, just masks on everyone, and some classes combining remote and in-person learning.
“We know that people in the community are getting COVID tested,” Regalado said. “If you look at the L.A. County Public Health website… they report daily on how many positive cases there are. This doesn’t necessarily mean that the transmissions are taking place on campus.”
Regalado emphasized that the University’s priority is to get everyone on campus vaccinated.
Everyone in the community is expected to report their vaccination status, either by sending in proof of vaccination or exemption from policy by Oct.1.
According to the ULV Safe Return Plan: “Students granted an accommodation or exemption may be subject to regular COVID-19 testing, daily symptom checks, quarantines, and additional COVID-19 training, or other preventative measures necessary to protect the health and well-being of the community.”
“A lot of us have lost family members, lost friends, people in our family have lost jobs,” Vicroy said. “There are things beyond the school that really shape the way that we engage with it and those change over time.”
Vicroy said that although the measures may seem hard, complicated, and are very restrictive, she believes that they are doing what will keep everyone safe – and complying with state mandates.
To learn more about the coronavirus visit cdc.gov. If there are any questions specifically regarding COVID-19, you may contact the student health services at (909) 448-4619.
Liliana Castaneda can be contacted at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Liliana Castañeda, a senior communications major, is the Fall 2022 news editor of the Campus Times. She has previously served as editorial director, arts editor, copy editor and a staff writer.