Monday Afternoon Update

Good afternoon,

We are getting closer to the start of the fall semester, and there continues to be much information to share. The FSU Re-entry Committee will share weekly messaging to answer frequently asked questions, communicate important information, and highlight some of the incredible innovations of our faculty and staff.


1. What impact does Governor Whitmer’s most recent Executive Order have on working remotely?

Employees are encouraged to work remotely per Governor Whitmer’s newest Executive Order 2020-161 issued July 29, 2020. Some employees may be required to work onsite if duties may not be performed remotely or necessary services cannot be performed remotely as determined by their supervisor.  

This status will remain in place until the University moves into Phase Three of our Re-Entry Plan on August 24 or any additional Executive Orders addressing remote work are issued.

2. If I am working remotely, do I still need to complete the required, daily COVID-19 Symptom Checker?

Yes, whether you are working remotely or working on campus, all faculty and staff must complete the daily, required COVID-19 Symptom Checker form. The Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) requires this to be completed any time work is being performed on behalf of the University. At this time the completed form does not need to be given to anyone. Please keep a completed copy for your records. Soon, the University will be releasing a new, electronic symptom checker accessible from smartphones, computers, tablets, etc. Please stay tuned for this announcement.

3. How will classrooms be cleaned/disinfected in between class periods?

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused us all to re-think how we keep ourselves and our colleagues safe. This includes practicing good hygiene (e.g. washing your hands often, covering your mouth and nose with a tissue - or your sleeve - when sneezing or coughing, using hand sanitizer, etc.) in addition to cleaning and sanitizing our work areas. It is worth recognizing that even with the addition of MicrobeCare, it is important we all take personal responsibility for cleaning/disinfecting our work areas. A personal bottle of disinfectant and paper towels will be provided to each faculty member teaching face-to-face on campus, for use inside the classroom. Faculty are encouraged to clean/disinfect what they use/touch after each class period so it is clean for the next colleague coming in to teach. We are all in this together, and together we can help keep our colleagues safe.  

University Wide Syllabus Attachment for Faculty

In the Re-entry Committee Town Hall on July 29, the Academic workgroup shared they are in the process of developing a University Wide Syllabus Attachment for Fall 2020. This draft syllabus attachment outlines the expectations for both faculty and students in face-to-face classes relative to CDC-recommended procedures to reduce the risk of exposure to COVID-19. Faculty are highly encouraged to review and provide feedback directly to [email protected].

Other Important Information/Reminders

  • A new GCN training module was recently added and available for viewing: “COVID-19 Video: Wear a Cloth Face Covering (CDC).”
  • A message to students was sent on July 30 from Dean of Student Life Joy Pulsifer and a list of student frequently asked questions was published on the Coronavirus Campus Information and Updates webpage and shared via social media.
  • Physical Plant has evaluated the HVAC system capabilities for buildings across campus and has identified strategies to implement to mitigate the spread of COVID-19 and create acceptable indoor air quality. You can view these detailed reports under “Enhanced Cleaning and Sanitization/Air Quality” tab on the Coronavirus Campus Information and Updates webpage.
  • All mail/parcels for campus facilities are delivered to the Mail Room in the General Services Building. Each department/facility will need to have one person pick up mail/parcels each day from 9 a.m. to 12 p.m. or 1 to 4 p.m. in the Mail Room, Room 103 in the General Services Building.
  • If you missed the FSU Re-entry Committee Town Hall on Wednesday, July 29 you can view the recorded Zoom presentation online.

Incredible Innovations

Each week we hope to share some of the creative innovations developed by faculty and staff this past spring and as plans continue forward for the fall semester.

This week we highlight innovations submitted by Megan Biller of the Doctorate in Community College Leadership program. Thanks Megan for sharing with us!

"Obtaining a doctoral degree involves blood, sweat and tears. The stress of the COVID-19 pandemic only adds to the workload and anxieties, especially since the DCCL students are at the forefront of the difficult decisions being made at their own institutions. The DCCL program has worked hard to provide additional support to their doctoral students over the past few months. Beginning in March, the important face-to-face component of the program needed to be moved to a virtual format. In order to do their best to retain the essence of the program, the following innovations were made:

      • Staff: The small, but mighty DCCL team has worked tirelessly to provide additional methods of communication and support to the students. From email check-ins to evening virtual gatherings, the staff have done their best to ensure that the DCCL students have the encouragement and support they need. Additionally, staff have been available at all hours, answering questions and offering guidance and accommodations as needed, while making the decisions for the safety of the students moving forward.
      • Faculty: Losing the important face-to-face interaction of our courses has been a concern. However, DCCL faculty have embraced the challenge. They participated in Zoom trainings, while also offering to speak with students individually in order to get to know each other better and answer questions they may have. These networking opportunities have proven to be essential as the DCCL students continue their careers.
      • Graduation: For three years, DCCL students look forward to graduation day, when they can don their magnificent crimson regalia and celebrate with friends and family. With the cancellation of the graduation ceremony in May, the DCCL program offered a virtual graduation for Cohort 8 via Zoom. While it was not quite the same, it did offer the opportunity for the graduates to invite more family and friends to the event. It was estimated that over 150 family and friends attended the virtual ceremony. Additionally, the DCCL Advisory Board, faculty and staff were part of a video with words of congratulations." 

If you have an example you would like to share, please e-mail the FSU Re-entry Committee at [email protected].

As we continue through Phase 2 of the University’s re-entry plan, please continue to help keep our University community safe and healthy by following these recommendations:

  • If you are sick, stay home.
  • Cover your coughs and sneezes.
  • Practice good hand washing/sanitizing often.
  • Conduct group or staff meetings, and meetings with students remotely as much as possible (using Zoom, MS Teams, etc.).
  • Stay to the right when using hallways and stairwells.
  • Limit 2-people riding in an elevator at one time.
  • Establish flexible worksites (e.g., working remotely) and flexible work hours (e.g., staggered shifts), if feasible.
  • Discourage colleagues from using other employees’ phones, desks, or other work tools and equipment.
  • Regularly clean and disinfect surfaces, equipment, and other elements of your work environment.

As always, all faculty/staff/student messaging and other important information regarding the University’s re-engagement efforts are available on the Coronavirus Campus Information and Updates webpage. Please continue to check this page frequently for updates.

By working together, we can have a safe and engaging start to the Fall 2020 semester.

- The FSU Re-entry Committee