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Spring on the York College campus

Campus Announcements

Oct. 15, 2020


Dear Students,

Two weeks ago, we announced restrictions that were necessary to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 across our campus. They included reduced opportunities to gather in groups, no eating in the dining halls, reduced seating in Schmidt Library, and no visitors permitted in the residence halls. We know some of you saw these restrictions as a punishment. They were, in fact, designed to be part of a short-term effort to keep all of us safe and to avoid shutting down campus and requiring all students to learn virtually at home. I am happy to report that your cooperation over the past two weeks did indeed help us avoid a major outbreak on campus. (See the aggregated data on the COVID-19 dashboard.)

Therefore, we will roll back the restrictions on Friday, Oct. 16. It is important to note that the threat of a COVID outbreak continues, and it is only through your actions and adherence to guidelines that we can continue to stay on campus. Based upon our recent experience, we have instituted a few new COVID-19 mitigation measures that will let you move about freely while making campus even safer than before. The sections below show what restriction rollbacks look like for various people/areas.

Academics

  • Schmidt Library will return to seating arrangements/density that existed before the restrictions. There will be new signage to indicate the appropriate number of people permitted at each table.

Commuters

  • Commuters are welcome to use all of the appropriate campus resources (e.g., dining hall, Grumbacher Center, Schmidt Library, etc.) as before.

Residence Life

  • Perhaps the least popular restrictions prevented visitors in the residence halls and restricted interactions to people on your own residence hall floor. We are relaxing these restrictions and permitting residents to visit each other in all residence halls again. Commuter and off-campus students can also visit their friends who live in campus residence halls. The posted visitation hours will resume as listed in the residence halls. Students will be able to have 2 guests visiting at one time as long as everyone is able to properly social distance and masked. 
  • As before, no overnight guests will be permitted.
  • Only parents and official guardians will be allowed to visit their students; no other family members may visit until further notice. 

Dining Services

  • Although you may continue to carry out your meals, you may also eat in the dining facilities as long as you abide by the physical distancing norms in each facility and replace your face covering immediately after eating.
  • Retail dining locations will resume normal operating hours. All indoor satellite eating locations will reopen (Sparts Den, MacDougal Lounge, William Walker, Commonwealth Room, Keystone Room, Alumni Hall, and WPAC Second Floor).

Athletics and Recreation

  • Given a recent trend of incidents in the Grumbacher Sport and Fitness Center (GSFC), the staff will enforce the wearing of face coverings with a one-and-done policy. This means if you are not wearing a face covering properly (e.g., chin-strapping, not covering your nose properly), a staff member will ask you to leave the facility for the day. If you are out of compliance a second time, you will lose GSFC privileges for the remainder of the semester.
  • Intramural competitions, group exercise sessions, club sport practices, and varsity athletics activities will all resume with the understanding that all participants will adhere to the appropriate behaviors.
  • Full-time YCP employees will regain GSFC access; as users, employees will be held to the same standards as students (properly wearing a face covering, physically distancing, etc.).

Student Activities

  • No in-person meetings will be permitted for student clubs and organizations. All meetings will remain virtual at this time. 
  • Tabling outside on the Student Union patio will resume; tables can be reserved through the Office of Student Activities & Orientation (OSAO). 
  • In-person events will be approved on a case-by-case basis by OSAO. Groups must submit an event request form and a safety plan to include strategies for ensuring social distancing, mask wearing, etc. 
  • Because of capacity restrictions, any approved indoor event will only include a very small number of in-person participants. 
  • Students may gather to decorate bulletin boards in the Student Union lobby or compile event packets for pick up in the Student Union with social distancing and mask wearing in place. Please notify the OSAO of any plans to gather for these purposes. 

Student Behavior

  • Students who violate the gatherings policy will be handled as described in the Oct. 9 portal announcement titled “Information on student gatherings and the spread of COVID-19.”

Travel

  • Although we strongly encourage you to stay on campus until Nov. 24, if you do travel away from campus, you will only need to quarantine for 14 days if you travel to one of the states listed on the Pennsylvania Department of Health webpage.

Going Forward

We depend on you to help keep our campus safe and healthy. As it gets colder, people tend to spend more time indoors, which means you have to be diligent in monitoring your symptoms, wearing face coverings, physical distancing, and being attentive to personal hygiene. We are strongly encouraging you to schedule a flu shot at your earliest convenience. It is important to again remind you that the two-week restrictions were necessary to protect our campus from an outbreak of COVID-19. Although we are now lifting the restrictions, if we see data trending in a negative direction, we will not hesitate to reinstate them to safeguard the health of all of our community members. Let’s continue supporting the health and success of our campus by following the health safeguards, and staying dedicated to academics. With your help, I know we will finish fall semester successfully.


Respectfully,

Dr. Joshua D. Landau
Associate Provost for Student Success
Interim Dean of Student Development and Campus Life

Return to Campus

Archive

  • August 31, 2020 - Campus Community and Families

    AUGUST 31, 2020 — Two members of the York College community have tested positive for COVID-19. These cases were unrelated. Contact tracing has been conducted by our Health Services staff; any close contacts have been notified. (A close contact is someone who has been within six feet of a person who has tested positive for COVID-19 for more than 15 minutes.) We have also followed our quarantine and isolation policy.

    We will take this opportunity to remind community members of the expectations listed in the Hygiene and Wellness Policy. Additional information about York College's Plan to Resume On-Campus Instruction is available at www.ycp.edu/return.  

  • August 21, 2020 - Campus Community

    Aug. 21, 2020

    To York College Students:

    All of us at York College have been working for the past three months to bring you back to campus. Our plan is a good one. Not only does it adhere to all of the appropriate guidelines, we have intentionally gone beyond these guidelines (at great expense) to keep our community as safe as possible for everyone.

    Yes, we are happy that you are back, but frankly I am very disappointed by the actions of those students who have chosen to or intend to disregard the policies and regulations we put in place to safeguard everyone. Those policies include wearing a face covering, practicing good personal hygiene and washing hands often, and importantly, social distancing.

    Upon your return to campus, you were required to sign a Student Pledge indicating that you understood these guidelines and you agreed to adhere to them. You were also informed that nonadherence to these guidelines would result in disciplinary actions. This said, I must insist that all students take seriously the policies we have put in place to keep you safe . . . and our campus open the entire fall semester.

    The large off-campus gatherings must cease immediately. It is impossible to practice those guidelines intended to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 when you are gathering in large numbers at off-campus parties with no regard for social distancing. Further, the nonstudent community members on Jackson Street, our campus employees, other students, and parents are also alarmed by your behavior.

    This is your official warning that this behavior will not be tolerated, and that there will be consequences to hosting noncollege-sanctioned parties. Moving forward, College officials will investigate reports of any large gathering of students. ALL residents who live at the house where a party is held will be brought before our Student Conduct Board. The penalty for such a violation will include, at a minimum, not allowing them to come on campus for any reason, including in-person classes, or to participate in any college-sponsored activities. Students also risk suspension for the semester.

    Current circumstances around the spread of COVID-19 require that my colleagues and I take a hard stance on this behavior. Parties and large gatherings where students are not social distancing or wearing face coverings will not be tolerated. This is the only way that we can hope to keep all of us healthy and on campus for the fall semester.

    As I have said on numerous occasions, we are all in this together. Now, more than ever, we need to pull together and hold each other accountable for doing the right thing. You want to be here, and we want you here. Work with us to make that happen.

    Sincerely,

    Pamela Gunter-Smith, PhD
    President of York College of Pennsylvania

  • July 16, 2020 - Campus Community and Families

    In late May, York College of Pennsylvania made the important decision to return to in-person, on-campus instruction for the Fall 2020 semester. Since making the decision to return to campus, a Return from COVID-19 Task Force, comprised of representatives from all units across campus, has been working to develop the necessary policies and plans to re-open addressing all facets of campus life. The Plan to Return to Campus for Fall 2020 (the Plan) has been developed in response to guidance from the Pennsylvania Department of Education, the Centers for Disease Control, and the Department of Health, and recommendations from our state and national higher education associations. The Plan represents our current judgement as to how we can achieve our goal to reopen while keeping the health and well-being of our campus community as its highest priority. In essence, the Plan is one that represents a best-informed approach to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 in our campus community

    We recognize that returning to campus for the Fall 2020 semester, and importantly, keeping campus open, will require vigilance and cooperation from everyone, as well as monitoring and revising the Plan as conditions on campus and in the broader community change. Should circumstances change requiring a more restrictive approach to opening or a decision to close campus and return to a completely virtual learning platform, we will make the operational changes necessary to ensure continuity of learning and authentic engagement between our students and faculty and one another.

    Pamela Gunter-Smith, PhD
    President of York College of Pennsylvania

  • July 13, 2020 - Campus Community and Families

    Hello from York College! All of us here have been preparing for the opening of the fall semester on campus. In my June 16 correspondence, I informed you of my decision to bring students back to campus in as safe a way as possible. I applaud both our students and faculty for adapting to our virtual instruction platform. However, we know that a York College experience is not just about what you learn, it is about how you learn. It is our attention to the “how”– real-world experiences that allow students to apply their learning beyond the classroom walls, and faculty who bring firsthand experience and empowering support into the classroom – that make a York College education distinctive.

    Like all institutions opening for the fall, we are navigating unfamiliar waters and ever-changing conditions. I ask that you keep the following in mind and continue to be patient when we reopen our campus.

    1. Life and instruction on campus will be different from that experienced before COVID-19. As is the case for everyday life, being back on campus will require an adjustment to a “new normal."

    2. The situation continues to be very fluid. Not only do we continue to learn more about the virus, we have also learned how fragile our gains can be with respect to mitigating COVID-19 spread.

    3. And most important, keeping campus open will require vigilance and cooperation from each of us.

    I shared with you in my earlier correspondence some initial information regarding what this new normal at York College will look like. This letter provides additional detail focusing on four areas: Academics, Health and Safety, Student Life, and Living and Dining on Campus.

    These topics will be discussed by a panel of campus leaders beginning this week as I host a series of webinars for returning students and families.

    July 15 at 3 p.m. - Academics

    July 22 at 3 p.m. - Health and Safety/Student Life 

    July 29 at 3 p.m. - Living and Dining on Campus

    Additional information, including how to register for these webinars, is available at www.ycp.edu/return. I hope you will participate and ask any questions you may have as the fall semester draws nearer. In addition, the Return to Campus website will be populated with new details about our plan soon, and we will continue to add information as decisions are made.

    Health and Safety: Our Health Services personnel and Return from COVID-19 Task Force have been consulting with and following guidance provided by local, state and federal organizations including the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Protocols and procedures to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 on campus have been developed. While we cannot completely prevent COVID-19 from affecting our campus community, we have taken steps to mitigate its spread.

    All members of the campus community will be required to follow PDE and CDC guidelines, including:

    • Maintaining social distancing guidelines of at least six feet.
    • Wearing a face covering while visiting ALL public spaces on campus, including classrooms, and while traversing campus. (Exemption form is available.)
    • Washing your hands and/or using hand sanitizer regularly.
    • Disinfecting personal electronic devices.
    • Waiting outside a fully occupied public restroom until someone exits.
    • Following posted occupancy guidelines for elevators, meeting spaces, lounges, study rooms, etc.
    • Monitoring individual health metrics.
    • Staying home if sick and notifying your instructors, employers, and campus health office.
    • Scheduling an appointment with the Health Center or your Primary Care Provider, as necessary.

    Every member of our community is expected to adhere to these guidelines. All York College students will be asked to sign a form acknowledging, accepting, and agreeing to comply with new protocols and practices established in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Students who do not comply can be referred to the Student Conduct process.

    COVID-19 testing will be available for students on our campus who exhibit symptoms or are identified as at-risk for exposure through contact tracing.

    Importantly, we are requesting that students self-quarantine at home for 14 days before returning to campus. Once the semester starts, students should remain on campus or in the surrounding area where the COVID-19 status is most likely similar to that of York County. We ask that students not travel outside of the York area, especially to destinations experiencing a resurgence in positive cases.

    Students who cannot adhere to these health and safety regulations may request an accommodation to receive virtual instruction for all courses, with appropriate medical documentation.

    Academics: The 2020-21 academic calendar accelerates the academic year by removing all fall breaks in order to get students home by Thanksgiving. A four-week inter-session is planned for the beginning of the spring semester. More information about the inter-session will be provided later in the semester. All inter-session courses, excluding those that require clinicals or field work, etc., will be virtual.

    For the Fall 2020 semester, all students should expect to have some face-to-face instruction on campus. However, for some courses, face-to-face instruction will be rotational. That means that the class will be split into two cohorts who will rotate with respect to days of face-to-face and virtual instruction. Students should expect that all instruction will be synchronous. Whether face-to face or virtual, instruction will occur in real-time, and if virtual, using Zoom. We will work to accommodate individual student schedules as much as possible.

    We have evaluated more than 100 classrooms on campus and determined the maximum number of students who can be taught face-to-face while observing social distancing of six feet as required by the PDE and the CDC. Furthermore, over the summer we have invested heavily in instructional technology and faculty development to continue to deliver a highly impactful instruction virtually. All student support services will be maintained, including tutoring, health and counseling services, and career services. Faculty will hold office hours virtually.

    Living and Dining on Campus: Residence Life will continue offering double and single rooms to students in campus housing. To mitigate the spread of COVID-19, visitors are discouraged. Overnight visits will not be permitted.

    Information regarding the move-in process has been emailed to students by Residence Life.

    Dining facilities (Johnson Dining Hall, West Campus Dining Hall, Sparts Den, Appell Cafe, and Starbucks) will be available to students only. Students must wear face coverings, and they will have their temperatures checked upon entering Johnson and West Campus dining halls. These facilities have been reconfigured to allow for social distancing; additional seating areas will be available throughout campus. Plexiglass shields have been added, as have hand-sanitizing stations. All food will be served by Chartwells staff (no buffets), and no cash transactions will be permitted.

    Student Life: Student Activities and the Campus Activities Board will continue to provide engaging events for our students. Many of these will be virtual, and some may even be held outdoors to allow for social distancing. Recreational opportunities will be available in the Grumbacher Sport and Fitness Center; however, they will be offered on a more limited basis.

    It was recently announced that our NEW athletic conference, the Middle Atlantic Conference (MAC), is planning for fall competitions. As a member of the MAC, York College is committed to providing an enriching student-athlete experience through our Division III intercollegiate athletics program. With the health and well-being of our students, coaches, and staff at the forefront of our mission, we will continue to monitor COVID-19 risks as we prepare for the fall semester. Our Spartans will compete so long as the ability to do so aligns with the standards of safety we have established for our entire College community. As warranted, we will update our position on athletics throughout the summer and during the semester.

    I hope that this update indicates to you that we are carefully planning our Fall 2020 semester to allow students to return to campus and mitigate the potential spread of COVID-19. We will need the cooperation of all campus community members to ensure this happens. Our faculty and staff will also be transitioning to this new normal, with policies and protocols that will affect how they serve our students and this college.

    I am sure that you have many questions as you prepare to come to campus. Our Return to Campus website will be updated regularly and will be able to provide answers to most questions, as well as contact information for appropriate campus offices. The website should be your first source of information for most questions; you may also try contacting appropriate campus offices. For questions not answered on the website, we have created a YCP COVID Call Center for your use from 9 to 11 a.m. and from 1 to 3 p.m., Monday through Friday. The phone number is 717-815-1900, and the email is covidquestions@ycp.edu.

    As I have said previously, we are all in this together and we will all get through this together. I look forward to having students back on campus this fall. As always, take care of yourselves and one another.

    Sincerely,

    Pamela Gunter-Smith, Ph.D.

  • June 16, 2020 - Campus Community and Families

    Dear Spartans: 

    Hello from the campus of York College of Pennsylvania. Yes, we are opening campus for the Fall 2020 semester, and I cannot wait to see you! For the past several weeks, my colleagues and I have been planning for your return. I want to take a few moments to share with you what to expect when you come to campus. A Return to Campus webpage has been created to answer questions. We will continue to update this page as information becomes available. In addition, we are planning to host a series of informational webinars in the coming weeks. More information regarding the schedule for these will be provided soon. 

    First things first. The health and safety of our campus community remains our primary consideration. On Friday, June 12, York County moved into the Green Phase of Gov. Tom Wolf’s reopening plan. The Green phase is expected to last until a vaccine is developed and requires that the College follow Pennsylvania Department of Education and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines. It is important to state that staying “Green” and not slipping back into the more restrictive Yellow and Red Phases requires a concerted effort by all of us and includes maintaining appropriate hygiene, such as frequent hand washing, wearing masks to protect community members, social distancing, and limiting visitors to the YCP campus. 

    Academics 

    For Fall 2020, the College will offer a blend of virtual and in-person instruction in each of our classes. (Students are encouraged to bring a laptop to campus.) We will continue to provide high-impact learning opportunities in an environment that connects the best in student-faculty interaction with the best in new technology. Classroom capacity will be limited to provide social distancing. 

    The Fall 2020 academic calendar is as follows: 

    • Aug. 22, 2020 – First Day of Fall Orientation for New Students 
    • Aug. 25, 2020 — Day Classes Begin (Evening Classes Start August 24) 
    • All vacations and holidays have been removed for the Fall 2020 semester. 
    • Nov. 24, 2020 — Last Day of On-Campus Instruction; Remainder of Fall Semester Is Online 
    • Nov. 30, 2020 — Reading Day 
    • Dec. 1-5, 2020 — Final Exams (remote) 

    Details for the Spring 2021 calendar will be released in the coming weeks. 

    Please note that we have shortened the fall semester to decrease the likelihood of a disruption due to a resurgence of COVID-19 on campus. Evening and day classes will commence on Aug. 24 and Aug. 25, respectively. Classes will be held on Labor Day, and the traditional Fall Break is eliminated. We ask that residential students remain on campus during the weekends and that all students avoid traveling to areas where COVID-19 might be more prevalent. The last day of on-campus classes will be Nov. 24, 2020, after which residential students will vacate the residence halls. Students will return home for Reading Days and Final Exams, with the semester ending Dec. 5. 

    All student support services will be available (Health Center, Counseling Services, Academic Advising, Career Development, Student Accessibility Services, Tutoring and Writing Assistance) to students throughout the semester. 

    Campus Life 

    Fall Orientation for New Students will be Aug. 22 to 24, 2020. Orientation will occur using a hybrid format, with small in-person meetings and large virtual programs. Student Activities and the Campus Activities Board are planning a variety of events and engagement opportunities for the fall semester. To meet social distancing requirements, events will be a combination of virtual and in-person, smaller-scale programs open to all students. Rest assured that activities will continue to happen, regardless of circumstances. We have learned what works virtually and will continue to build on that. 

    Some things to note: Campus traditions such as bingo, trivia, stress busters, etc., will still occur with a new twist – many will be outdoors or virtually interactive. Campus Recreation will provide fun competitions and themed recreational activities. Most will be virtual. Student organizations will continue to operate with meeting and event attendance restrictions. 

    Commuters will, as always, be included in all events and engagement opportunities. 

    I anticipate that decisions regarding athletics will be made shortly. Our conference athletic directors and presidents have been meeting to discuss pending issues and potential schedules. Coaches will keep student-athletes informed on the status of fall sports. Under the Green Phase, all gatherings are limited to 250 people. 

    Residence Life 

    Residence Life will continue offering double and single rooms to students in campus housing. Students who selected spaces with roommates will remain in those assignments for the upcoming academic year. Additionally, new students who requested to be placed with roommates will be placed accordingly whenever possible. The move-in process for fall semester will be a staggered, weeklong event beginning Aug. 17. Students will sign up for a specific date and time block to move into residence halls. Updates and information will be shared with students in mid-July once housing assignments are finished and billing statements are issued. Decisions regarding the early return to campus by special groups – student-athletes, Engaged Scholars, etc. – are still under consideration.

    Health and Safety 

    We are committed to keeping our campus community healthy. Outside visitors will be limited. All residence halls, other campus facilities, and shuttle buses are currently being sanitized and disinfected in anticipation of reopening. Additional cleaning will occur, especially in common areas. Plexiglass barriers are being erected in areas having the highest potential for social contact. Temperature checks will be conducted upon entering our dining facilities. Here, too, capacity is being reduced and carryout and grab-and-go options are being expanded. Everyone on campus will be required to wear masks when in public spaces, including classrooms. Our Director of Health Services is in contact with our local public health office. Should a student display symptoms associated with COVID-19, appropriate procedures will be followed including on- or off-campus quarantining, if necessary. 

    I have outlined a few of the steps we are taking to open campus for the Fall 2020 semester. There are more in progress as our planning continues.

    An important aspect of a York College experience is our strong sense of community. This develops from the interactions that take place among community members both on- and off-campus. Relationships formed here last a lifetime. Returning to campus this fall is important to all of us. We can only do so if we maintain a safe campus environment. I cannot stress enough that our ability to open and to remain open requires your cooperation in adhering to standards and guidelines imposed by our "new normal." We are in this together and we will adjust to our "new normal" together. 

     

    Sincerely, 

    Pamela Gunter-Smith, Ph.D.



  • June 16, 2020 - Campus Community

    Dear Spartans: 

    Hello from the campus of York College of Pennsylvania. Yes, we are opening campus for the Fall 2020 semester, and I cannot wait to see you! For the past several weeks, my colleagues and I have been planning for your return. I want to take a few moments to share with you what to expect when you come to campus. A Return to Campus webpage has been created to answer questions. We will continue to update this page as information becomes available. In addition, we are planning to host a series of informational webinars in the coming weeks. More information regarding the schedule for these will be provided soon. 

    First things first. The health and safety of our campus community remains our primary consideration. On Friday, June 12, York County moved into the Green Phase of Gov. Tom Wolf’s reopening plan. The Green phase is expected to last until a vaccine is developed and requires that the College follow Pennsylvania Department of Education and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines. It is important to state that staying “Green” and not slipping back into the more restrictive Yellow and Red Phases requires a concerted effort by all of us and includes maintaining appropriate hygiene, such as frequent hand washing, wearing masks to protect community members, social distancing, and limiting visitors to the YCP campus. 

    Academics 

    For Fall 2020, the College will offer a blend of virtual and in-person instruction in each of our classes. (Students are encouraged to bring a laptop to campus.) We will continue to provide high-impact learning opportunities in an environment that connects the best in student-faculty interaction with the best in new technology. Classroom capacity will be limited to provide social distancing. 

    The Fall 2020 academic calendar is as follows: 

    • Aug. 22, 2020 – First Day of Fall Orientation for New Students 
    • Aug. 25, 2020 — Day Classes Begin (Evening Classes Start August 24) 
    • All vacations and holidays have been removed for the Fall 2020 semester. 
    • Nov. 24, 2020 — Last Day of On-Campus Instruction; Remainder of Fall Semester Is Online 
    • Nov. 30, 2020 — Reading Day 
    • Dec. 1-5, 2020 — Final Exams (remote) 

    Details for the Spring 2021 calendar will be released in the coming weeks. 

    Please note that we have shortened the fall semester to decrease the likelihood of a disruption due to a resurgence of COVID-19 on campus. Evening and day classes will commence on Aug. 24 and Aug. 25, respectively. Classes will be held on Labor Day, and the traditional Fall Break is eliminated. We ask that residential students remain on campus during the weekends and that all students avoid traveling to areas where COVID-19 might be more prevalent. The last day of on-campus classes will be Nov. 24, 2020, after which residential students will vacate the residence halls. Students will return home for Reading Days and Final Exams, with the semester ending Dec. 5. 

    All student support services will be available (Health Center, Counseling Services, Academic Advising, Career Development, Student Accessibility Services, Tutoring and Writing Assistance) to students throughout the semester. 

    Campus Life 

    Fall Orientation for New Students will be Aug. 22 to 24, 2020. Orientation will occur using a hybrid format, with small in-person meetings and large virtual programs. Student Activities and the Campus Activities Board are planning a variety of events and engagement opportunities for the fall semester. To meet social distancing requirements, events will be a combination of virtual and in-person, smaller-scale programs open to all students. Rest assured that activities will continue to happen, regardless of circumstances. We have learned what works virtually and will continue to build on that. 

    Some things to note: Campus traditions such as bingo, trivia, stress busters, etc., will still occur with a new twist – many will be outdoors or virtually interactive. Campus Recreation will provide fun competitions and themed recreational activities. Most will be virtual. Student organizations will continue to operate with meeting and event attendance restrictions. 

    Commuters will, as always, be included in all events and engagement opportunities. 

    I anticipate that decisions regarding athletics will be made shortly. Our conference athletic directors and presidents have been meeting to discuss pending issues and potential schedules. Coaches will keep student-athletes informed on the status of fall sports. Under the Green Phase, all gatherings are limited to 250 people. 

    Residence Life 

    Residence Life will continue offering double and single rooms to students in campus housing. Students who selected spaces with roommates will remain in those assignments for the upcoming academic year. Additionally, new students who requested to be placed with roommates will be placed accordingly whenever possible. The move-in process for fall semester will be a staggered, weeklong event beginning Aug. 17. Students will sign up for a specific date and time block to move into residence halls. Updates and information will be shared with students in mid-July once housing assignments are finished and billing statements are issued. Decisions regarding the early return to campus by special groups – student-athletes, Engaged Scholars, etc. – are still under consideration.

    Health and Safety 

    We are committed to keeping our campus community healthy. Outside visitors will be limited. All residence halls, other campus facilities, and shuttle buses are currently being sanitized and disinfected in anticipation of reopening. Additional cleaning will occur, especially in common areas. Plexiglass barriers are being erected in areas having the highest potential for social contact. Temperature checks will be conducted upon entering our dining facilities. Here, too, capacity is being reduced and carryout and grab-and-go options are being expanded. Everyone on campus will be required to wear masks when in public spaces, including classrooms. Our Director of Health Services is in contact with our local public health office. Should a student display symptoms associated with COVID-19, appropriate procedures will be followed including on- or off-campus quarantining, if necessary. 

    I have outlined a few of the steps we are taking to open campus for the Fall 2020 semester. There are more in progress as our planning continues.

    An important aspect of a York College experience is our strong sense of community. This develops from the interactions that take place among community members both on- and off-campus. Relationships formed here last a lifetime. Returning to campus this fall is important to all of us. We can only do so if we maintain a safe campus environment. I cannot stress enough that our ability to open and to remain open requires your cooperation in adhering to standards and guidelines imposed by our "new normal." We are in this together and we will adjust to our "new normal" together. 

     

    Sincerely, 

    Pamela Gunter-Smith, Ph.D.

  • May 27, 2020 - Campus Community

    Dear Students:

    York College is again accepting applications for the CARES Act Student Relief Fund grants.  In response to the COVID-19 situation, the federal government has provided resources to colleges and universities for expenses resulting from a disruption of campus operations. Part of the federal CARES Act is a direct grant program for students who are in need of emergency financial aid.  As a point of clarification; tuition, fees, job loss, or wage reductions do not constitute qualifying expenses according to the language contained within the Federal CARES Act.

    Purpose:

    The CARES Act student grants are designated for “...emergency financial aid grants to students for expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to coronavirus (including eligible expenses under a student’s cost of attendance such as food, housing, course materials, technology, health care, and child care)…”

    Eligibility:

    Only students who have or could be eligible to file a FAFSA may receive emergency financial aid grants. The criteria to participate in this grant program include but are not limited to the following:
    U.S. citizenship or eligible noncitizen; a valid Social Security number; registration with Selective Service (if the student is male); satisfactory academic progress; and a high school diploma, GED, or completion of high school in an approved homeschool setting.

    If you wish to be considered for funding from the federal CARES Act, please complete the 2019-2020 Federal CARES Act Grant Application. After completion and submission, the form will automatically be sent to the Financial Assistance Office for review. Please understand that funding is limited, and resources may not be available to provide the amount requestedThis application is for expenses during the time period of March 27 through April 30, 2020, and/or May 1, 2020, through May 31, 2020.  Applications are due by June 12, 2020.

    If you have already applied and received a grant for the first time period (March 27 to April 30), please be sure that the expenses are for new expenses not previously submitted.  Let us know if you have any questions by emailing financialaid@ycp.edu. 

    Sincerely,

    Eric Dinsmore, Director
    Office of Financial Assistance 

  • April 17, 2020 - Campus Community and Families

    I am writing to provide information on the process for moving out of residence halls, and adjustments for housing, meal plans, and parking. I appreciate your patience as we have thoughtfully considered how to balance the needs of our students and families with our longstanding commitment to affordability and access. 

    Move-out Process

    Residential students will receive instructions regarding the process for moving their belongings out of residence halls. The time period for move out will depend on the lifting of the stay-at-home mandates in Pennsylvania and other states, and the process will follow social distancing guidelines. Students will sign up online for a specific date and time to return to campus and move out. 

    Housing, Meals Plans, and Parking Adjustments

    Adjustments are being calculated individually and in consideration of any institutional funds that were awarded to offset those costs. Students will receive individualized communications regarding their specific account adjustments by May 1, 2020. The Business Office will not be in a position to answer student-specific questions until after the individualized letters are received. 

    Adjustments will be made in the following ways:

    • For students with current balances - Credits will be posted to student accounts to reduce the current bill.
    • For graduating students - Refund checks will be mailed to the permanent address of students who have applied for Spring 2020 graduation and will have completed their degree requirements. 
    • For continuing students - Credits will be applied to student accounts to reduce the Fall 2020 bill.
    • For parking, students will receive credit for 50 percent of the spring semester charges.

    Adjustments for student accounts were determined as follows:

    • Because residential students were essentially commuting during campus closure, their cost of attendance (COA) changed to that of a commuter student. 
    • The adjusted COA was used to calculate the amount of institutional aid (merit and need-based) attributed to housing and meal plans.
    • The charges for housing and meal plans* were adjusted by the revised amount of institutional aid and then prorated based on the number of days residence halls remained open to the student (March 15, for most). 

    *Full credit will be given for unused meal plan points. 

    I am looking forward to the day when we can all gather on the York College campus. Stay safe and healthy, and be kind to one another. 

  • April 10, 2020 - Campus Community and Families

    To the York College Community:

    With the decisions to close our York College campus and continue virtual instruction through the remainder of the academic year, we have completed the first phase of our response to the COVID-19 pandemic. None of the decisions I have made up to this point in time were easy, but each reflected my best judgement to ensure the safety and security of our Spartan community.  

    I now have the opportunity to address the short- and long-term impact of this pandemic on the College.  I know that you have many questions, especially about returning to campus to retrieve your belongings from the residence halls, about celebrating graduation, and about resuming face-to-face summer courses and friendships. Nothing would give me more pleasure than to see everyone back on campus; however, this is not up to me or my administration. Rather, it will depend on when it is safe for our community to do so. Maintaining social distancing and staying home will help us to reach this point.
    I will keep you informed of decisions in the most timely manner possible. 

    My thanks to all of you for working with us during these difficult times. Please know that I recognize the many challenges that you and your families are facing because of COVID-19. 

    I wish all of you a happy and healthy Easter or Passover. Let this time of renewal and rebirth also be a time of hope for better days. While we may not be able to physically gather together, it is important to find a way, perhaps through technology, to share special moments with those you love.  

    My thoughts are with all of you. Take care of yourselves and each other. We will get through this together.

  • April 9, 2020 - Campus Community and Families

    Your student received this correspondence from our Provost, Dr. Laura Niesen de Abruna, earlier this week. I am sharing it so that you will also be aware of additional grading options. 

    Message from Provost Niesen de Abruna:

    During the past two weeks, I have consulted with a wide variety of individuals to discuss grading for the Spring 2020 semester. In addition, I have reviewed what other institutions have decided to do. This past week, I used a survey to ask both the full-time and part-time faculty members and all of the students who are registered for the Spring 2020 semester about their thoughts on the pass/fail issue. 

    There are a number of unintended consequences of going to a simple pass/fail system, including requirements within departments and from accreditors for a specific grade, other courses that require a grade of 2 or above to move to the next course, or scholarships requiring a specific GPA. Therefore, students should consult with advisors, as well as offices such as the Financial Assistance Office, to determine the impact that taking a Pass option would have on their personal situation.

    In order to offer some flexibility for grading this semester, we have decided the following: Faculty members will submit grades as usual to the Registrar’s office using the established deadlines. We are urging faculty members to be flexible and to give students the benefit of the doubt, especially in relation to the coronavirus. There will be many circumstances in which a grade of “I” (Incomplete) is appropriate. The course withdrawal date of April 10 will be extended over Spring Vacation until April 14. (Spring Vacation begins at 10 p.m. on April 8 and ends at 8 a.m. on April 14.)

    For one week following the posting of grades, students will have an opportunity to make some choices about their grades in each of their courses. If they wish to keep the grade they are assigned, they do not need to do anything. But they can also:

    1. Take a Pass if the grade assigned is 2 or above
    2. Take a Low Pass if the grade is 1
    3. Take the designation of NC, which means no credit. This course will not be counted as an F and will not be counted in the GPA. To earn credit for these courses, they will need to be retaken.

    Once the grades are entered, they cannot be changed except via a specific appeal. More information about the process will be forthcoming in an additional email.

  • March 31, 2020 - Campus Community and Families

    As I indicated in my earlier correspondence, students and families may have questions with regard to the closure of campus for the remainder of the spring semester. I have gathered information on the following topics, which have been the focus of many questions received by me and my colleagues.

    Residence Hall Move Out
    The College is developing a plan for students to move out of residence halls. We must comply with state and federal mandates that are now in effect in York and a large number of other states and municipalities. These are in place to ensure the health and safety of our communities, and include a stay-at-home mandate, the extended social-distancing requirement, and the shutdown of all non-life-sustaining businesses. In addition, the number of COVID-19 cases continues to increase exponentially throughout Pennsylvania. Because of these circumstances, we must delay implementing our plan and will contact students with a schedule when conditions allow. Campus Safety continues to patrol 24/7 to ensure that residence halls are secure. Until you are notified, do not return to campus to retrieve items.
    Contact: residencelife@ycp.edu
     
    Room and Board Adjustments
    We appreciate that students and families are being affected by economic conditions created by COVID-19. We are currently exploring adjustments to fees for room and board for students who cannot access the residence halls or the dining facilities during campus closure. We are evaluating options, which in most cases are complicated by financial aid implications. Once the review is complete, we will communicate with each affected student. We appreciate your patience as we take the time to ensure the accuracy of this process.
    Contact: businessoffice@ycp.edu
     
    Grading
    The Provost and Student Senate president have sent a survey to faculty and students to ask for feedback on a pass/fail option. The College will be considering grading issues in the next few weeks and will provide information when it is available.
    Contact: studentsuccess@ycp.edu
     
    Financial Aid
    As you are preparing for the 2020-21 academic year, it is important to complete the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA). For Pennsylvania residents, PHEAA has extended the deadline to May 15, 2020. To receive PHEAA funds, the FAFSA must be filed by that time. 
    Contact: financialaid@ycp.edu or 717.815.1282
     
    Commencement Exercises
    Plans are being developed for a face-to-face celebration. Additional information will be shared as it becomes available. Regalia (caps and gowns) may be picked up when the campus and Bookstore reopen. 
    Contact for regalia: bookstore@ycp.edu
     
    I hope you find this information helpful. While we do not have definitive answers on some topics, and I am sure there may be additional questions in the future, please know that we are doing our best to address the issues that affect our Spartan families. We will continue to communicate regularly to update you.

  • March 30, 2020 - Campus Community and Families

    I would like to start this note by thanking the entire York College community for making challenging adjustments throughout the past few weeks. Our faculty have moved quickly to provide online and virtual instruction and advising. Students have adapted, but obviously miss the connection to campus. Our employees are also working remotely and/or assuming other work assignments. None of this has been easy, and I am proud of the way that we have supported each other to ensure that we continue to fulfill our mission. 

    The current situation in Pennsylvania has not improved. The Governor's closure of non-life-sustaining businesses continues, and his issuance of a stay-at-home order for some Pennsylvania counties now includes York County. These mandates reflect continuing efforts to “flatten” the COVID-19 growth curve through social distancing. Just yesterday, President Trump expanded social distancing guidelines until April 30, 2020. 

    Because of these current circumstances, I have made the decision to continue online/virtual instruction throughout the rest of the spring semesterThe York College campus will remain closed to students, visitors and those employees who are not performing essential on-campus functions. All College-sponsored events (on and off campus) scheduled before the end of the semester (May 18, 2020), will be canceled or postponed. Unfortunately, this includes the postponement of our May 16 commencement exercises, which will need to be rescheduled. I remain committed to celebrating the accomplishments of our graduates. 

    I know that you have many questions with respect to the impact of the continued York College campus closure. For students these include, but are not limited to, the ability of residential students to move their belongings from residence halls, adjustments for unused room and board fees, successful completion of courses and grading, and planning for summer courses. 

    For campus employees, questions arise as to how to comply with the stay-at-home order, and compensation beyond April 15. I have elected to address these concerns in separate communications. Importantly, I ask for your patience as we work through these issues. My leadership team has been meeting remotely every day to respond to this. We will provide more information as soon as we can. 

    This is not the way any of us expected to finish out the semester. It is important to continue following recommended guidelines to keep you, your loved ones, and all of us healthy and safe during this unprecedented time. My special thanks to those of you on the front lines working to save lives and to keep us healthy and fed. 

    I cannot predict exactly when our campus will reopen and we can gather again as a community. Remember, we are in this together, and we will come through this together – as Spartans.

  • March 20, 2020 - Campus Community

    To the York College Community:

    This is a very uncertain time for our nation and for York College. I hope that all of you are adjusting as well as can be expected. The challenges are real, and sacrifices are required. As we hear on a daily basis, we all must do our part to "flatten the curve" and prevent the further spread of COVID-19. Yesterday, Gov. Tom Wolf took additional steps to promote social distancing across the Commonwealth by issuing a state-wide shutdown of all businesses that are "non-life-sustaining" by 8 p.m. last evening. He further indicated that state police and other government agencies will enforce his order beginning March 21 at 12:01 a.m.

    We here at York College have already been promoting social distancing within our campus community and will comply with Gov. Wolf’s decree. Beginning March 16, most students were asked to leave campus housing, and we initiated remote instruction by our faculty. As of March 23, nearly all of our students will be with their families. Only a handful of staff and administrators, those providing essential services, will continue to work from their campus locations.

    One thing seems to be constant at this time – the impact of this COVID-19 pandemic is causing hourly and daily changes to our world. Because of this great uncertainty and the recent order by Gov. Wolf, I have decided to extend the campus closure at least until Tuesday, April 14. We hope to resume normal campus operations on that date, including face-to-face instruction for our students. A hallmark of a York College education is the close relationships that our community members value. For this reason, I am hopeful that we can reopen in time to recapture this before the close of the semester.

    My leadership team and I are continuing our daily assessment of the situation and discussion of what is best for our campus community members. Conditions are changing, and if it becomes apparent that we will not be able to reopen by April 14, we will notify you no later than April 3.

    Currently, commencement ceremonies are scheduled to occur as planned on May 16. If conditions require us to postpone, be assured that a face-to-face celebration of our graduates’ accomplishments will occur as soon as feasible.

    Thank you for all you are doing to ensure our Spartan community is safe, and that we are fulfilling our mission as a college. Stay healthy, and take care of yourselves, your loved ones, and those around you.

  • March 18, 2020 - Campus Community

    To the York College Community:

    I am sure that all of you are following closely the spread of COVID-19 throughout the country. The Pennsylvania Department of Health announced today that there are two confirmed cases of COVID-19 in York County. Neither case is associated with York College. 

    My leadership team and I are meeting daily to discuss the latest COVID-19 developments and the impact on our community. As you will recall, we closed the York College campus to visitors earlier this week. Campus Safety has taken precautions to ensure the safety of personnel and personal property. Faculty have embraced the remote delivery of courses. There are always a few glitches, but for the most part, these efforts are successful. Our campus activities group is working to provide opportunities for students to gather “virtually” so that they can remain connected to the Spartan community.

    To adhere to Gov. Wolf's March 16 order that all nonessential businesses close, we reduced the number of employees working on-site and allowed only those with essential duties to report to campus beginning today, March 18. Many of our students who initially stayed on campus for a variety of reasons after the closure have departed. 

    Please be assured that I am carefully weighing options for the remainder of this academic year, as I try to balance the desire to provide students with the quality educational experience they deserve and keep them and our other community members safe.  More information will be forthcoming soon. Thank you for your patience and your cooperation.

  • March 14, 2020 - Campus Community and Families

    I want to provide you with an update on the status of the College’s response to COVID-19. In addition, there is a lot of misinformation that I hope to clarify. 

    1. To our knowledge, there is no confirmed case of COVID-19 in our campus community. As you know, there is no provision for widespread testing, especially for those not exhibiting symptoms. Several student groups traveled abroad during bring winter break. Those who were in College-sponsored programs were monitored and advised by Health Services as recommended by the CDC. Only those in areas identified by the CDC as Zone 2 or Zone 3 -- which at that time included Italy -- were asked to voluntarily self-quarantine. This precaution was not taken for students who traveled in other areas, as that was not the CDC recommendation. My decision to discontinue face-to-face classes was precautionary and intended to promote social distancing. Faculty will be in touch with students regarding classes, assignments, and other academic matters during closure. 
    2. Students living in college-owned housing have been asked to leave by noon on Sunday, March 15. Exceptions to this include students whose academic programs require clinicals, co-ops, or student teaching; those needing additional time to leave campus; or international students who cannot travel home. Approval for these students required the following: filing a petition with Residence Life through an online form, review by the appropriate senior administrator, and final review by the Director of Residence Life. It is important for you to know that the parameters for petition approval were evaluated and approved by me. In no case is any student required to stay on campus or to continue off-campus work or class assignments. That is voluntary. The College is accommodating those students whose ability to complete their course of study in a timely manner would be severely affected by this disruption. It is not required. Meals will be provided to students remaining in campus housing facilities that require meal plans. Campus shuttles will continue to provide transportation for clinical sites. Campus Safety will patrol campus 24/7. Access to campus and college-owned facilities will be limited to employees and students approved to remain during closure. Additional details specific to students remaining during closure has been provided to them. 
    3. At this time, all College employees are expected to report to their work assignments during normal working hours. Administrative buildings will be open only to employees. Academic buildings will also be open to faculty. However, the campus will be closed to visitors and students other than those granted permission to stay. Please contact the appropriate office via phone or email should you need to conduct normal business. 
    4. During closure, staff will be cleaning facilities according to recommended guidelines. We do not anticipate cleaning individual campus-owned apartments or rooms at this time. Although students will not be in residence, their belongings will remain in place. 
    5. At this time, no decision has been made regarding refunding costs associated with room and board during closure. We understand the financial sacrifices our families make to provide a York College education for their students. 

    I want to take this opportunity to thank the York College community, including faculty, staff, and administrators, for their exceptional work during this difficult time. All of us are committed to continuing to provide a high-quality and safe experience for our students. 

    I am asking for your patience and assistance as we move forward with our closure plan. Please understand that the situation is one that is constantly changing. Be vigilant about your health and follow CDC recommendations. Emphasize to healthy young adults who are not at home and under your direct supervision that while they are not particularly vulnerable to the virus, they can carry it to those who are. Social distancing and appropriate hygiene are important. Finally, be kind to one another. We are in this together, and we will get through this together. I will send updates regularly. 

    Sincerely, 

    Pamela Gunter-Smith

  • March 13, 2020 - Alumni

    To our York College Alumni Family:

    In this time of uncertainty and caution over the current COVID-19 outbreak, concern over the welfare of friends and family is at the forefront of our thoughts. As you are valued members of our York College family, we wanted to take the opportunity to share important news about your alma mater and our response. 

    The current COVID-19 outbreak is unprecedented. The course of the virus and its related infection are yet to be fully understood. What we do know is that the virus has had, and will continue to have, major effects upon public health, and in addition, response to it is likely to strain existing resources. My first priority is always the health and safety of the York College family. Out of growing concern for the welfare of our campus community members and their families, we are suspending all face-to-face classes, effective as of 4:15 p.m., Friday, March 13, 2020. York College will close its physical campus from Sunday, March 15 (at noon) until Monday, March 30. On Monday, March 16, classes will continue remotely through Friday, March 27.

    At this time, campus offices are scheduled to remain open during the closure. Our goal is to discourage the spread of this illness; therefore, only employees of the College and those with essential business to conduct with the College will be permitted on campus. All York College-sponsored events, both on and off campus, will be canceled throughout this period of time. If you have previously registered for a particular event, you will be notified via separate communication from our Advancement Division. YCP’s Development Office has taken steps to restructure and postpone several internal and external activities. 

    The following events have been canceled or postponed:

    • York Junior College Reunion – Wednesday, April 1, 2020 (postponed)
    • Harrisburg Spartan Social – Thursday, April 2, 2020 (postponed)
    • Annual Alumni Easter Egg Hunt – Sunday, April 5, 2020 (canceled)
    • Spartan Half Marathon – Sunday, April 26, 2020 (canceled)

    We hope to reschedule the postponed events for the 2020-21 academic year and will communicate new dates as soon as they are determined. We also will continue to assess the situation on our campus to make decisions and take actions to keep our community safe. Any updates and new information will be posted on the YCP website. You can access the information about the College’s ongoing response to the outbreak on this page, and view the status of our alumni events here. If you have specific questions about these events, please contact the Office of Alumni Relations at 717.815.6642 or alumni@ycp.edu

    Thank you for your concern and patience as we all work diligently to navigate through what is uncharted territory. Please know that York College is committed to the welfare of our community and to the success of our students. We intend to follow recommendations provided by the CDC to maintain our physical, mental, and emotional health. We are facing this together, and I am grateful to be part of a community that has already responded to the outbreak in a serious and thoughtful manner and will continue to do so. 

    Sincerely,

     

    Pamela Gunter-Smith, Ph.D.

  • March 12, 2020 - Campus Community and Families

    To the York College community from Dr. Gunter-Smith:

    The current COVID-19 outbreak is unprecedented. The course of the virus and its related infection are yet to be understood. What we do know is that the virus has had and will continue to have major effects upon public health, and in addition, response to it is likely to strain existing resources. My first priority is always the health and safety of the York College family. Out of growing concern for the welfare of our campus community members and their families, I have made the decision to suspend all face-to-face classes effective as of 4:15 p.m., Friday, March 13, 2020.

    Campus Closure

    York College will close its physical campus from Sunday, March 15 (at noon), until Monday, March 30. Students will be asked to depart from residence halls by noon on March 15. Schmidt Library, the Grumbacher Center, the Bookstore (except C-store), Johnson Dining Hall, and other common areas will be closed. Our goal is to discourage the spread of this illness; therefore, only employees of the College and those with essential business to conduct with the College will be permitted on campus. 

    All York College-sponsored events, both on and off campus, will be canceled throughout this period of time.

    Class Delivery

    On Monday, March 16, classes will continue remotely through Friday, March 27. Faculty members will contact students directly regarding their plans for classes. Library and Technology Services will continue to provide online assistance throughout this period of remote learning. 

    Clinicals, co-ops, and internships will be managed by the dean of each respective school. (Additional information for students who may be permitted to remain on campus to complete clinicals will be forthcoming)

    Residence Halls and Off-campus Housing

    Residence halls will close at noon, Sunday, March 15. All students are to vacate campus at that time unless they have received prior approval. Students who are seeking an exemption should immediately submit their request through an online form. Residence Life representatives will review submissions and contact students to provide details to those whose requests have been approved.

    It is important to note that services will be very limited during this temporary closure. Our campus will be closed to students who have not been granted permission to stay. 

    Employees

    Staff and administrators should report as usual on Monday, March 16, and work according to their typical schedules, unless other arrangements have been made with their supervisors. 

    Faculty may choose to teach remotely from their offices or an off-campus location. 

    Returning to Campus 

    The situation with respect to COVID-19 is very fluid and unpredictable. Our initial suspension of face-to-face instruction is scheduled to end on Monday, March 30. If face-to-face instruction recommences at that time, residence halls will reopen at noon on Sunday, March 29.  

    Should events dictate a longer period of time, you will be notified. Additional details will be posted on this page.

    We are all working diligently to navigate through what is uncharted territory. Please know that York College is committed to the health and welfare of our community and to the success of our students. It is important to follow recommendations provided by the CDC to stay healthy both physically and emotionally. Thank you for your concern and your patience. We will get through this together.

  • March 11, 2020 - Campus Community

    To the York College Community:

    It is understandable that there is growing concern regarding the possible spread of COVID-19 to our area and our campus. To date, we do not have any evidence that this is the case, and we continue to monitor and evaluate our situation. We are following all recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Pennsylvania Department of Health. In addition, we have taken extra precautions, including delaying large gatherings on campus, postponing international travel, and recently, consolidating our dining services to Main Campus. 

    We had a number of students who traveled abroad during winter break. Several were in Italy, which as you know, is a high-infection area. Those students returned a week ago to their homes, where they have self- quarantined. They are not on campus. One faculty member who traveled to Italy has self-quarantined as well. 

    To our knowledge, no other community members have traveled abroad to highly infectious sites over break. Other faculty, administrators, and students who traveled on College-sponsored trips abroad were in areas designated as low-risk by the CDC (Level 1). They are being monitored by Health Services. CDC guidelines do not recommend that they self-quarantine. At this time, we have no confirmed cases among our campus community members. 

    This is a very uncertain and anxious time for all of us. Every college must monitor its environment and make timely, appropriate decisions for its campus community. As I indicated in other communications, York College has been preparing for its response to COVID-19. At this time, our assessment does not indicate that we should close campus; however, this could change. 

    Our faculty are prepared to offer courses using various technologies should face-to-face classes be moved online. It is uncertain when this might happen and the length of time it would be necessary to teach in this fashion. Should we move to online learning, it is vitally important that students communicate with their instructors. Faculty will assist you to ensure you complete the course and earn the credits for which you are enrolled. 

    There is much you can do to help us. First, let Health Services (healthcenter@ycp.edu) know if you have traveled to a high-risk area or have been in contact with someone diagnosed with the virus. Second, if you exhibit symptoms, stay home and contact Health Services for guidance. Also, contact your instructors. Not every respiratory infection or illness is COVID-19. Third, practice recommended hygiene. Fourth, as you contemplate travel outside of campus, strongly consider avoiding areas of the country where the CDC is reporting the spread of COVID-19. 

    Your safety is my highest priority. I will keep you informed. Together we will get through this. 

  • March 6, 2020 - Campus Community and Families

    To the York College community from President Gunter-Smith:

    There is growing concern on many college campuses about COVID-19 (novel coronavirus), especially regarding students traveling abroad. In response, I have convened a campus-wide task force to monitor the situation and to coordinate our planning and response related to COVID-19. The College is following the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines.  

    Student Travel Abroad

    With respect to students traveling abroad, all who have been affected by travel restrictions or recommendations will receive help to ensure their academic progress is not affected.

    Students who had planned to study in countries identified by the CDC as Level 3 or Level 2 – widespread or sustained community transmission – will remain on campus throughout the spring semester.  

    Students currently studying abroad have been asked to return home. Those who have been residing in areas identified by the CDC as higher risk are being asked to self-quarantine for 14 days before returning to campus. Those who have been residing in areas not currently assessed as higher risk by CDC will be monitored by our Health Center personnel.

    At this time, there is no recommendation to test individuals who are asymptomatic. This is a very dynamic situation, and we will continue to monitor the situation and guidelines. 

    Student Academic Progress

    We are committed to continuing to ensure that students are able to earn credit hours for classes in which they are enrolled. Should there be a need to suspend face-to-face teaching for a period of time, or should faculty or students be advised to self-quarantine, courses will be delivered electronically.

    I will keep you informed of the College’s response as guidelines and recommendations warrant.

    For additional information, please consult the following resources:

    • Students with personal health questions: contact the Health Center at 717-849-1615 or healthcenter@ycp.edu.
    • Students with course-related questions: email your professor directly.
    • Faculty and staff with personal health questions: contact your medical provider. 
    • Staff with work-related questions: contact your supervisor.
    • Academic policy-related inquiries and College travel (faculty):contact the Provost Office
      at 717-815-1231.
    • College travel (students): contact the Study Abroad Center at 717-815-2238 or studyabroad@ycp.edu.
    • Public information related to the virus: Centers for Disease Control and PreventionPennsylvania Department of Health
  • February 28, 2020 - Campus Community

    COVID-19 Update for York College Campus Community

    A Crisis Policy Team is developing a plan to address the potential impact of COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) on York College and its community. As an institution, we are committed to keeping our community informed about the College's actions and the best way to stay healthy. 

    At this time, the Team is recommending that campus offices and programs discuss alternative ways to deliver services should it be deemed necessary to close campus. (It is important to note that there are currently no reported cases of COVID-19 associated with York College.)

    In addition, we urge all members of our community to take steps to protect themselves from illness. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends the following preventative steps for any communicable disease:

    • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
    • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
    • Avoid sharing anything that has come in contact with saliva, whether in your living or social environments.
    • Stay home when you are sick. (You must be 24 hours fever-free without medication to return to class or work.)
    • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
    • Get adequate sleep and eat well-balanced meals to ensure a healthy immune system.
    • Additional information is available from the CDC.

    For additional information, please consult the following resources: 

    • Students with personal health questions: contact the Health Center at 717-849-1615 or healthcenter@ycp.edu.
    • Faculty and staff with personal health questions: contact your medical provider. 
    • Academic policy-related inquiries and College travel (faculty): contact the Provost's Office at 717-815-1231.
    • College travel (students): contact the Study Abroad Center at 717-815-2238 or studyabroad@ycp.edu.
    • Public information related to the virus: Centers for Disease Control and PreventionPennsylvania Department of Health
  • January 31, 2020 - Campus Community

    I am sure that many of you are aware of the recent outbreak of respiratory illness caused by a novel (new) coronavirus first identified in Wuhan, Hubei Province, China. We at York College are staying in touch with local, state and national sources to monitor the situation. 

    Please see the information below -- provided by the American College Health Association -- regarding symptoms, transmission and prevention of respiratory viruses. If you have any questions, please contact the YCP Health Center at 717.849.1615.

    Amy Downs
    Director of Health Service

    What is novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV)?

    2019-nCoV is a newly identified coronavirus that is causing an outbreak of pneumonia illness. It was first identified in December 2019 in the city of Wuhan, Hubei Province, China.

    Since then, the virus has been identified in multiple other countries, including cases in the U.S.

    According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), human coronaviruses are common throughout the world and usually cause mild to moderate illness in people. This new virus is a public health concern because:

    • It is newly identified, so much is still unknown about it.
    • Two other human coronaviruses, MERS-CoV and SARS-CoV, have caused severe illness.

    What is the risk?

    The CDC considers this new virus a public health concern based on current information. However, the immediate health risk to the general U.S. public is considered low at this time. The CDC and the World Health Organization are closely monitoring the situation and providing ongoing guidance. 

    Symptoms and transmission:

    Symptoms may be flu-like, ranging from mild to serious, and include:

    • Fever
    • Cough
    • Congestion
    • Sore throat
    • Headache
    • Difficulty breathing

    Person-to-person spread is occurring, although it’s unclear exactly how it is transmitted and how easily the virus spreads between people.

    Prevention:

    Here are everyday actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory viruses:

    • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
    • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
    • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
    • Stay home when you are sick.
    • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
    • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces, such as countertops, light switches, cell phones, remotes, and other items that are touched frequently.

    Additional information:

    Please refer to the CDC website https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/faq.html

  • September 30, 2020 — Campus Community

    SEPTEMBER 30, 2020

    To York College Students:  

    First, I want to assure you that currently there is no cause for immediate alarm. However, our campus  has observed a recent small uptick in individuals who have been identified as close contacts of several  COVID-19 positive students. All close contacts have been notified and are currently quarantined as  required by our guidelines.  

    From a position of caution and for the health of our campus community, I have made a decision to  implement an on-campus “Fall Break” by decreasing opportunities for student gatherings on campus.  “Fall Break” will begin Oct. 1 and continue through Oct. 15. It may be continued, if deemed necessary. 

    Our numbers are still relatively low (see our campus COVID dashboard on the Return to Campus  website), but we are taking the steps below to mitigate the spread of the virus and to better ensure that  we can finish the semester here on campus. I offer my thanks to the majority of students who have been  complying with our requests to practice the 3 Ws: Wear a face covering, Watch your distance, and Wash  your hands. Unfortunately, others have not been as diligent and/or have intentionally chosen not to  adhere to our campus public health guidelines, which has resulted in the current uptick in cases.  

    The following are changes to the current living and learning activities at York College as of Oct. 1: 

    Academics 

    • All students will continue with hyflex learning in classrooms. (Those who have received  accommodations to learn remotely will continue in that way.) 
    • Commuters and off-campus students will be permitted to enter campus ONLY for classes and  academic requirements.  
    • Students will continue to participate in experiential education opportunities such as clinicals,  labs, internships, etc.  
    • Schmidt Library will remain open with lower density seating.  

    Residence Life  

    • No visitors (students or guests) will be permitted in residence halls. Students must restrict their  movement from residence hall to residence hall. They should interact only with others on their  residence hall floor.  

    Dining Services 

    • Meals will be picked up as carry-out. There will be no eating in our dining facilities or in other  areas without social distancing.  
    • Should you choose to eat outside, you must maintain the appropriate social distance at all times  and replace your face covering immediately after eating.  
    • Retail dining locations like Spart’s Den will have reduced hours. 

    Athletics and Recreation/Student Activities 

    • No practices or conditioning sessions will be scheduled for student-athletes. 
    • The Grumbacher Center will remain open, but only for students (no YCP employees). 
    • No in-person meetings will be permitted for student clubs and organizations. All meetings will  be virtual. 

    Student Behavior 

    • Students who host or participate in unauthorized gatherings that violate York College policies or the Student Code of Conduct will face a student conduct referral that could result in suspension from campus and/or the College.  

    Residential students should remain on campus unless they are leaving for jobs/internships, clinicals, or  to run errands for food or supplies. Residential and commuter students are permitted to continue their  work assignments on- and off-campus. Should students be required to travel away from York, they must  quarantine for 14 days before returning to campus. Finally, students are reminded to call the Health  Center if they are not feeling well or if they get tested off-campus.  

    These further restrictions may not be welcomed; however, they are necessary to avoid taking actions  that are more stringent. I hope that this break will provide the opportunity for us to reset and return to  our normal operations at the end of this period of time. Now more than ever, we need everyone to  cooperate and follow guidelines to ensure that can happen. Take care of yourselves and one another.  

    Sincerely, 

    Pamela Gunter-Smith, Ph.D.
    President of York College

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