Sustaining a Healthy Community

Check this page for developments and decisions on how Central College is responding to the health of the campus community.

Central College is a place open minds do their best when there’s an open heart for others.

We are a tightknit community where everyone is dedicated to making the world better. To keep learning alive, the college plans to resume in-person instruction and re-open residence halls, dining facilities and other campus services for the Fall 2020 semester in a manner consistent with public health guidelines.

As we prepare to return to in-person instruction in the fall, we also work to ensure our campus remains healthy and safe. Central is focused on working through the implications for teaching and learning in an unprecedented world. The information found here provides details on how the college supports the campus community in providing a high-quality and safe education for all.

Central’s health initiative is designed to encourage all campus citizens to be aware of the needs of others as well as one’s own personal health. The use of a face cover, maintaining a six-foot physical distance and respecting the sometimes-invisible health concerns of others represent good etiquette for all members of the Central family.

To support this initiative, all students are expected to bring two reusable face masks, personal hand sanitizer and cleaning supplies for their residence hall room. Students also will receive two additional masks and a reusable face shield, which are required in most courses. Faculty and staff also have access to reusable masks, a reusable face shield and cleaning supplies.

Information on these pages is subject to change as circumstances warrant. Please check back often.

July 2, 2020 — Return to Campus Health Initiative

Dear Central Family,

Have a heart for others.

That’s the lead of this note to you.

It’s also the Central College way and the culture of who we are as a community.

The global pandemic we find ourselves in the midst of has mandated a need to make changes for a yet undetermined amount of time to enable our students to participate in learning at Central. These changes are practical and based on science – and, at their core, all about having a heart for others.

Over the past two months, we have been busy preparing for the arrival of our students on campus in August. The college has engaged in significant research and effort with assistance from experts on two different task forces. Our goal has been to help Central resume our mission of educating tomorrow’s leaders with maximum safety. The work of creating protocols and expectations that reduce the known risks of the coronavirus has been done in a framework of having a heart for — and a responsibility to — others.

We have recently launched this new health initiative website that outlines our expectations for the Central family as we approach the beginning of the fall semester. The coronavirus will remain a fact of life for some time. The nature of how we understand the virus is continuously evolving. As a result, some approaches on the site may change over time as we learn more about the virus and as therapeutic and vaccine solutions are realized.

As you might anticipate, out of respect for the health of all, we expect members of the Central community to:

  • Wash hands frequently and avoid touching face and eyes.
  • Carry a personal supply of hand sanitizer.
  • Wear a mask and/or face shield when working indoors or near others outdoors.
  • Maintain a six-foot distance from each other whenever possible.
  • Avoid congregating in hallways and common spaces.
  • Stay home or in the residence hall when sick.

From this list, the most debated is wearing a mask. As a campus society, we won’t mandate their use outright — although under certain circumstances they can be required or alternatives be mandated. For example, face shields will be required in language courses because it’s important for faculty and students to see each other’s mouths for optimal learning.

As you make plans to return or come to campus for the first time, it is essential for you to have a heart for others. Please carry a mask and/or a face shield with you and wear it when you are indoors and in close proximity to others because the research is finding that the virus is spread overwhelmingly by the air we share. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is recommending everyone wear a mask as a way to beat the pandemic and keep the world open. Right now, these steps are the best we have until a vaccine is found.

We all have a role, and a responsibility, in ensuring the health of our college community. I thank you in advance for familiarizing yourself with the guidance shared as part of our ongoing health initiative.

Yours in health,

Mark Putnam
President


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