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Coronavirus Information

Coronavirus (COVID-19) Medical Information

The staff of the Wabash Student Health Center – Scott Douglas, M.D. ‘84 (Montgomery County Health Officer), John Roberts, M.D. ’83 (Deputy Montgomery County Health Officer), and Chris Amidon, BSN, RN, NCSN (College Nurse) – are working closely with the Wabash administration to create the most appropriate residential experience that will keep our community, including our most vulnerable populations, as safe as possible during the COVID-19 era.

There is absolutely no doubt that every member of the Wabash Community must work diligently to limit the effect of COVID-19 on our campus. This will be a true test of the Gentleman’s Rule – a responsibility to protect all members of the Wabash Family.

Student Health Center Operations During the COVID-19 Pandemic

  • Students are required to contact Nurse Amidon via email or telephone before coming to the Student Health Center. All students will be questioned about COVID-19 symptoms and potential exposures prior to being offered an appointment. We are anticipating utilizing a combination of in-person and telehealth visits.


Important COVID-19 Documents COVID-19 Symptom Check-In

COVID-19 Check-In App:   Download for iOS/Apple   Download for Android/Google Play


General COVID-19 Information

The best source for up-to-date information about COVID-19 can be found on the CDC website and the CDC FAQ page. We recommend you bookmark these pages for easy reference. Submit Wabash-specific questions via email

  • Familiarize yourself with the symptoms of COVID-19. If you are concerned you might have COVID-19, you can use the CDC Coronavirus Self-Checker chat bot to help you determine what type of help you might need.

  • COVID-19 disease is caused by the virus SARS-CoV-2, a coronavirus that is spread from person-to-person through respiratory droplets and likely from touching surfaces contaminated with the virus. It is extremely contagious.

  • You do not have to be sick to spread the virus to others and you can catch the virus from someone who does not appear ill. It’s best to assume everyone is infected and act accordingly.

  • COVID-19 causes the most severe illness and death in older persons, particularly those who have underlying health conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, lung disease, and kidney disease. However, many young people have died from COVID-19. It is important to note that we do have students on campus who have medical conditions that put them at higher risk for severe illness and death. We have numerous faculty and staff who are older and have medical problems as well. We need to come together as a community to protect everyone, particularly the vulnerable persons on our campus.


Symptom Monitoring / Testing / Contact Tracing / Quarantine / Isolation

How can I get tested for infection?

Testing for students is available through the Student Health Center by appointment. The College is testing students who have symptoms recorded in the COVID Pass app, the College's daily symptom monitoring program. Additionally, Wabash is conducting surveillance testing of random samples of students each week. Students participating in intercollegiate athletics are tested at least once each week.

There are two options for faculty and staff here in Montgomery County:  If you have a private medical provider, you can contact his/her office to discuss getting a test through the Franciscan Health Crawfordsville hospital site. You will work with the hospital scheduling department to arrange a test time. Getting tested here will require a medical provider to order the test. The results will be reported to your provider.

There are also two Indiana testing sites in Montgomery County that do testing Monday through Friday. The testing is free and does not require a health care provider’s order. You can register online for a test here. *Note that it works best to use either the Google Chrome or Firefox web browser. Results from tests done at these two sites will be reported directly to you via email and/or text message. If your test is positive, you should report your results to your medical provider.

Currently, all the tests in Montgomery County are molecular PCR tests performed by inserting a swab up the nose.

How are we monitoring the number of infected students, faculty, and staff?

The Wabash COVID Pass app, a symptom monitoring app, identifies ill individuals early. The COVID Pass app collects basic health monitoring data such as temperature and symptoms of potential respiratory disease, e.g., cough, sore throat, rapid change in taste or smell, etc. Data is expunged from the system at regular intervals. In addition to students who test positive for COVID-19 on campus, individuals who test positive through an off-campus provider are asked to report this to the Student Health Center. Employees should report a positive COVID test to human resources at hr@wabash.edu or by calling Cathy Metz at 765-361-6418. This information will remain confidential.

I regularly have migraines or get headaches from allergies. Will checking the headache box trigger a "stop" or should I not enter it if I know it is a migraine or allergies?

The symptom app gives different weights to the symptoms based upon their correlation with COVID-19. COVID Pass app users should check the headache box symptom only if the headache is severe, unsual, or unrelenting. Please enter your symptoms honestly so we can keep tabs of the health of our community.

What happens when a member of the community contracts COVID-19?

Students who contract COVID-19 are moved to an isolation facility or may go home to isolate. Wabash follows CDC guidelines for when a student may return to campus. Faculty and staff who contract the virus should isolate at home and contact Human Resources to receive guidance on when to return to work.

What happens when a member of the community is in close contact with a diagnosed case of COVID-19?

We are following the CDC recommended options for quarantine and testing students who are considered close contacts (as defined by the CDC) of a person who has been diagnosed with COVID-19. All quarantined students will be required to complete a 14-day quarantine period. Most students will be tested during their quarantine period with adjustment of their quarantine restrictions if they test negative. Students who test negative may still develop COVID-19 infection up to and including the 14th day following their last date of exposure and will therefore remain separated from others through the 14th day. They may attend class, labs, and athletic practices only if they: (1) continue to practice, at all times and in all locations, the mitigation strategies of physical distancing, wearing a mask except when eating or drinking, and washing/sanitizing hands; (2) don't leave campus unless approved by the Wabash Student Health Center; (3) continue to monitor their health daily and enter their data in the Wabash COVID Pass symptom monitoring app; (4) immediately self-isolate and contact the Student Health Center if they develop any symptoms.

What should employees do if they develop COVID-19 or are identified as a close contact, e.g., a family member contracts the virus?

Indicating on the COVID Pass app that you have tested positive for COVID-19 or have been exposed will trigger a STOP message on your app that is automatically communicated to the Director of Human Resources. The College’s guidance is to follow the quarantine/isolation timeline calculator provided by the Indiana State Department of Health in consultation with your primary care provider.

I am an employee of Wabash. May I come to campus if a member of my household has symptoms of COVID-19 and is awaiting testing or test results?

You and the members of your household should self quarantine until an alternate diagnosis is made, your family member receives a negative COVID-19 test result, or your health care provider advises otherwise.  Make Cathy Metz aware of the situation and discuss with her options for remote work and any other questions you may have.

I am a Wabash employee. May I come to campus if a member of my household has been quarantined due to contact with a laboratory confirmed case of COVID-19?

If the family member is asymptomatic, you do not need to quarantine and may come to campus unless your health care provider advises otherwise. The CDC has provided guidance to prevent spread within a household. Contact Cathy Metz with any questions you may have.

What does it mean for a student to be quarantined and what should I include in a Quarantine Kit?

Quarantine means to "Separate and restrict the movement of people who were exposed to a contagious disease to see if they become sick." The reason people are quarantined is because they may be infected but don’t have enough viral particles to be detected. You may feel perfectly fine; this could be because you are not infected, but it might also be because the viral load has not reached a point of manifesting symptoms, which can take up to two weeks. The length of time students spend in quarantine is determined in consultation with public health officials and the College's medical staff.

During quarantine, you may either go home or quarantine on campus. Campus locations for quarantine may include students’ current rooms, other lodging accommodations on campus, or a local hotel. We recognize that quarantine can be lonely, and students may feel more comfortable quarantining at home.  In either case, you should stay in your assigned room and avoid contact with other people; be vigilant in monitoring your health; and complete the COVID Pass app twice a day. Contact the Student Health Center or your health care provider if you develop symptoms of COVID-19. See also CDC Guidance for Quarantine.

We recommend that every student have a list of Quarantine Wellness Kit supplies handy. Think about what you’d need if you had to be out of your room for 7-14 days. Some suggestions include: Thermometer, mask or other cloth face covering, personal hygiene supplies, routine medications, cell phone and charger, fever-reducing medication such as acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen, hand sanitizer—at least 60% alcohol is recommended, laptop, books, anything you need to attend classes virtually, 2-3 changes of clothing, pillow, and items to support your mental health and prevent boredom.

If someone in my class is diagnosed with COVID-19, will we all have to be quarantined?

The classrooms have been reset to allow for spacing of six feet or greater so that the entire class will not need to be quarantined. However, members of the class may be identified through contact tracing for quarantine and testing. There were no cases of classroom transmission in the fall semester.

What about contact tracing?

In Indiana, contact tracing is done through the Indiana State Department of Health, and Wabash is augmenting that work by contact tracing on campus. Our goal is to quarantine close contacts as soon as possible after a positive case is identified on campus. 

What happens if a student must isolate or quarantine? How will he keep up in class?

Wabash faculty are known for their student-centered nature and that won’t be any different during the 2020-21 school year. Faculty are accommodating students who either miss class for illness or enter quarantine or isolation. In fact, it is important to faculty that students actively participate in symptom monitoring and follow health guidelines rather than come to class when they are ill. The most important part of keeping up when missing class is communication; students should remain in regular communication with faculty about their situation in order for alternate plans to be arranged for the completion of coursework. For routine illness and precautionary absences, faculty will work with students on missed work (as they always do when students are absent). If a student is in quarantine due to COVID exposure or is asymptomatic while awaiting a test result, faculty will expect students to keep up with their regular work. When students are in isolation and are ill, faculty will show understanding and compassion for students’ situations. How students will stay connected to class will vary by faculty member and course. In some instances, students will be able to attend class virtually. In other cases, faculty may record in person or virtual class sessions for students who are unable to attend. And other faculty, depending on preference and the sort of work required in a course, will provide students with alternate assignments to cover missed work.

What happens if a professor must isolate or quarantine? Will students fall behind?

Faculty have developed a variety of plans for how to adapt to a range of circumstances that might arise during the fall semester. If a faculty member enters quarantine for precautionary reasons or is asymptomatic, they will activate an alternate learning plan that will likely consist of a combination of virtual class meetings and independent work assigned to students. Indeed, most classes will have some virtual course days built into them regardless. In the event of faculty illness, departments have developed ways to supply course coverage to the extent possible, and faculty have put as much course material as possible into Canvas, our learning management system, so that students and any substituting faculty members have access during an absence by the instructor of record. For courses that have multiple sections, such arrangements might be relatively straightforward, while specialty elective courses are likely to utilize more diverse strategies.

How can a faculty or staff member tell if a student is allowed to attend class or work?

Please check their COVID Pass. Faculty now have access to a limited amount of data from the COVID Pass of the students in their courses. It must be GREEN for them to attend class or assume a campus job. If they have reported any COVID-19-related symptoms, are in quarantine or isolation, their COVID Pass will be RED. For students in quarantine or isolation, the app is locked on RED until the end of their quarantine or isolation period.

I have been vaccinated. Will I be required to quarantine and/or be included in surveillance testing?

You will still be required to participate in campus surveillance and athletic COVID-19 testing and to enter your data into the Wabash COVID Pass symptom monitoring app daily. You will not be required to quarantine if you are identified as a close contact of a person with COVID-19 if you meet all the following criteria: (1) you are fully vaccinated (i.e., more than two weeks following receipt of the second dose in a two-dose series, or more than two weeks following receipt of one dose of a single-dose vaccine; (2) you are within three months following receipt of the last dose in the series; or (3) you have remained asymptomatic since the current COVID-19 exposure. If you do develop symptoms, you must isolate according to CDC Guidance and contact the Student Health Center.

Does Wabash accept antibody testing as evidence of immunity to COVID-19?

No. The CDC recommends against serology as a decision point in regard to immunity and disposition. Antibody testing can be unreliable, and in particular tends to produce an unacceptable number of false-positive tests (indicating a student has had an infection when he has not). 

Why does Wabash require everyone to get a flu shot this year?

Respiratory influenza usually starts to appear in Indiana in the late fall and runs through the spring. This is the same time period that most infectious disease experts fear that SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, will be undergoing one or more resurgences or "waves." Having influenza viruses and SARS-CoV-2 circulating at the same time has the real potential to increase the severity of illness caused by one or both viruses. Having a large outbreak could easily overwhelm our ability to care for students at Wabash and also threaten the U.S. health care system that historically has had difficulty caring for patients during severe influenza seasons. 

Masks / Classrooms / Spaces / Meetings / Athletics / Travel

When should I wear a face covering or mask?

Wabash requires everyone to wear masks when on campus. To be clear, everyone should wear a mask at all times when they can't be at least six feet away from others. Simply wearing a mask is not enough; members of the Wabash community are asked to watch a short YouTube video about mask hygiene

The faculty were given face shields. Can I use them in place of a face mask?

Face shields reduce inhalation of aerosols and droplets, prevent people from touching their faces, are easier to wear correctly, and allow for lip reading. This last concern is especially relevant in the classroom for instructors. However, the CDC provided updated guidance on July 16, 2020 that does not recommend face shields for "normal everyday activities or as a substitute for masks." Faculty may choose to use them while lecturing if they are able to maintain at least six feet of distance from students and/or have concerns about students’ ability to process their professor’s speaking from behind a mask.

How are Wabash classrooms different this year?

The College measured every classroom to determine the appropriate number of students for each, while maintaining safe physical distance. Some classes are being taught in a “hy-flex” fashion, which allows some students to attend in person and others in a virtual format. A few classes are being taught at times other than the normal 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. schedule. An additional five minutes has been added to the passing times on MWF to allow for clearing and cleaning of a classroom before the next class enters. 

Can I hand out and/or collect assignments on paper?

COVID-19 is an airborne disease. While the virus has a half-life of viability of a few hours on cardboard to a couple of days on steel or plastic, it must get from the surface into your body to affect you. Consequently, following good hygiene practices, like not touching your face or licking your fingers, combined with washing or sanitizing your hands after touching papers from students, lowers the transmission of virus enough to allow for the use of paper in the classroom.

How will students' interactions in faculty and staff offices be handled?

We continue to encourage the use of video conferencing for office hours, individual appointments, and meetings as much as possible. In situations where meetings must be held in person, all individuals must wear masks or face coverings. In settings where transactions must be performed, plexiglass shields have been installed.

Where should we hold meetings and group discussions?

Everyone in the community should conduct as many meetings as possible using Zoom or a similar virtual platform for both individual appointments and group meetings. Room capacities have been adjusted in the Scheduler to reflect social distancing seating and all rooms have maximum capacities posted. Please review the College's Events and Guests Guidelines.

Will Wabash compete in intercollegiate athletics this year?

Unlike the fall semester, athletes this semester will participate in a robust, weekly testing program informed by the NCAA’s Resocialization of Collegiate Sport Guidelines. Every athlete will be tested a minimum of once per week, which exceeds the NCAA’s testing recommendations in almost every sport. Coaches and staff, such as athletic trainers, who closely interact with athletes, are defined as “Tier 1” personnel by NCAA guidelines and are also included in weekly testing. Similar to the overall Wabash student population, athletes that previously tested positive for the virus are excluded from testing due to the medical evidence related to immunity in the months following infection.

Supported by the regimented testing program, teams will resume training sessions in January and February, with competitions scheduled for late January. Although it is not possible for all athletes to physically distance and mask during every sport activity, such variance in the structure of workouts and competition is not a disregard for the important mitigation measures necessary to reduce the spread of the virus. All sport programs, at the direction of each head coach, will continue to follow physical distancing and masking measures consistent with sport activity. 

Little Giant teams will only compete against other institutions with shared values on health, safety, and adherence to NCAA testing strategies. Schedules for winter sports and fall sports competing in the spring remain abbreviated and will operate with maximum flexibility. Often, more than one competition may be scheduled with the same opponent in a home-and-away format. Wabash is optimistic that there will be expanded spring sport competitions, bolstered by additional outdoor activities and more favorable weather conditions. Planning and conversations continue on adjusted schedules and formats for spring sports.  

Team travel will be limited and sports will not travel overnight for competition, except in unique situations such as NCAA championships. More information will be shared in the coming weeks on spectator guidelines and related details.

Are campus buildings like the Fine Arts Center, Library, and Allen Center closed to the public?

These faciities are closed to people who are not part of the College's daily symptom monitoring program, COVID Pass. Changes to this policy will depend upon current levels of infection in the Wabash community, Crawfordsville and regional area, and advice from public health agencies.

What is the definition of the "Wabash Campus Community?" Does this include families of Wabash faculty and staff, emeritus professors, parents of students, etc.?

The College will be better able to manage data and infection rates if the campus community includes only students, faculty, and staff participating in our daily symptom monitoring program. Please review the College's Events and Guests Guidelines. At this time, no guests are permitted in campus living units. We anticipate that the policy will be tailored in different ways to meet the diverse needs of each area of campus.

Are students allowed to travel together in personal cars?

Students traveling together in personal or College-owned vehicles should abide by the following guidelines: Masks must be worn by all vehicle occupants and windows must be down to provide maximum air flow. Cars should be limited to a maximum of 50% of normal occupancy, e.g., two persons in most standard cars. Seating should maximize the distance between passengers, e.g., diagonally with driver in front and passenger in the rear on the passenger side. Limit trips to the shortest distance possible, especially given CDC guidelines of a cumulative time of 15 minutes for persons within six feet of one another.

What should employees do if they are planning personal travel or vacations?

Staff and faculty are encouraged to continue to abide by the College’s COVID mitigation strategies – wearing masks, maintaining physical distance, hand washing, and avoiding close contacts – while traveling in-state or out-of-state for personal time off or vacation. For those employees whose travel puts them in situations where mitigation strategies cannot be maintained (e.g., large, crowded gatherings), the College expects employees to follow the CDC’s guidelines for the risks of traveling during the pandemic and how to quarantine when returning to campus.

General Precautions and Planning

What has the College done to prepare for a return to campus in January?

Wabash College continues to work under the guidance of the Healthy Campus Task Force (HCTF) and  with a number of governmental agencies and higher education entities, including officials from the Montgomery County Health Department. All students who have not tested positive for COVID-19 in the last 90 days must receive a negative COVID test through the CVS Return Ready program. Students should make an appointment 4-5 with CVS days prior to their scheduled return to campus. Students who are tested at other sites must submit their negative test result to the Student Health Center. (Students who have tested positive in the last 90 days should submit that test result to the Student Health Center.)

What is the Healthy Campus Task Force and what does it do?

The Healthy Campus Task Force is composed of Chris Amidon (College Nurse), Eric Lakomek '21, Malcolm Lang ’21, Todd McDorman (Dean of the College), John Roberts '83 (Campus Physician and Deputy Montgomery County Health Officer), Jill Rogers (Pre-Health Advisor and CARE Team Supervisor), Ann Taylor (Chemistry Professor and Special Assistant to the President for COVID-19 Response and Planning), Tyler Watson ’22, Marc Welch (Associate Dean of Students), and Jim Amidon (President's Chief of Staff). Its charge is to examine and propose changes to facilities, procedures, practices, and operations to limit the spread of the virus and to manage illness on campus.

What is the Academic Policy Committee and what does it do?

The Academic Policy Committee is elected by the faculty and normally drafts and approves academic policies for consideration by the faculty. The APC makes recommendations on calendaring, course policies, and best practices for classrooms and co-curricular activities.

What is the COVID Response Team and what does it do?

The COVID Response Team is comprised of Jim Amidon (Chief of Staff), Kendra Cooks (Chief Financial Officer), Scott Feller (President), Todd McDorman (Dean of the College), Greg Redding (Dean of Students), and Ann Taylor (liaison to the HCTF). The committee makes decisions on campus-wide practices,  procedures, and other items recommended by the Healthy Campus Task Force.

What types of precautions is the College taking to reduce the spread of COVID?

Wabash has obtained PPE for the Student Health Center, masks for everyone on campus, cleaning supplies, and hand sanitizer. Plexiglass barriers have been placed in offices where transactions must take place, and virtual appointments and meetings are encouraged. Consistent with our Gentleman’s Rule and Gentleman's Compact, there is an emphasis on personal responsibility for maintaining the health of our community. The College has established and published guidelines for safe campus events and limits on guests visiting campus. Wabash conducts weekly random surveillance testing of students at a statistically reliable rate. A team is responsible for contact tracing and, when necessary, isolates and quarantines students on campus or at home.

What outside expertise in Public Health has the College sought in crafting its plan for the operation of campus?

Wabash receives guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, American College Health Association, Indiana Department of Health, Montgomery County Health Department, and the Fairbanks School of Public Health. Wabash collaborates with the Independent Colleges of Indiana, the Great Lakes Colleges Association, and North Coast Athletic Conference on procurement and policy making. Wabash officials also consult with experts at other higher education institutions and medical centers in the area.

What I Can Do to Maintain the Health of the Community

What are plans to encourage community participation in public health best practices?

Students are required to abide by the Gentleman's Compact, which was written with student input and in the spirit of the Gentleman’s Rule. During this pandemic, the College has articulated a set of conditions to help ensure general health and safety of the entire Wabash community. These standards are in keeping with recommendations from the CDC and mirror what most institutions across higher education are implementing this year. In addition, faculty and staff have received Employee Guidelines.

A COVID Action Response Educator (CARE) Team of students trained in public health practices advocates for positive physical and mental health practices, as well as conducting public health initiatives. Resident Assistants and fraternity leaders also participated in the training activities.

How we can maintain the Wabash culture in light of the new challenges and continued uncertainties? What about student activities?

The College works with the leadership of the Student Senate, Sphinx Club, Resident Advisors, and fraternity leaders to maintain Wabash traditions and rites of passage.

Returning to Campus

Are staff and faculty working in their offices?

Most offices are partially staffed and many employees—in consultation with supervisors—are combining staggered work schedules and remote work to provide for physical distancing. When on campus, faculty and staff are required to wear a mask, participate in daily symptom monitoring, wash  hands frequently, and stay home when ill. Additional information can be found in Guidelines for Employees and Checklist for Supervisors.

Are family members of staff and faculty allowed on campus?

The College discourages visits to campus by family members of faculty and staff. Please review the guidelines for guests on campus.

How is safe physical distancing in fraternity houses and residence halls being practiced?

The College has received guidance from public health agencies to reduce the density in its living units and spread out its beds. Floor plans vary widely across all living units. Campus Services altered room configurations to maximize sleeping space for each student. This includes using some spaces for sleeping and studying that would normally be used for social gatherings. Based on each fraternity’s historical occupancy levels, 2020-21 capacities should be minimally affected. Students are encouraged to maintain safe physical distancing in their living units. 

Capacity will be reduced in dining rooms and students will be encouraged to eat in shifts or “grab and go.” Bon Appetit and Campus Cooks are following their institutional guidelines regarding safe food preparation, handling and distribution. In Sparks, self-service stations and buffets have been eliminated, serving areas are spread out, and plexiglass guards have been installed.

Community Spread and Changes in Operations

What criteria will be used to determine when the spread of COVID-19 has reached an extent that the College must make changes to its operations?

This decision will be made by College administrators and the Student Health Center professionals with guidance from state and local health officials. This decision will be based upon the rates of infection, capacity to manage health care, and ability to provide quality instruction. Any decisions will be communicated on the COVID web page, Emergency Notification System, and through official email announcements.

Cleaning Residences and Public Areas / Ventilation

What is the protocol for cleaning classrooms each day?

Sodexo Campus Services is using approved cleaning and disinfecting products according to manufacturer’s instructions on a daily basis. Employees wear gloves when cleaning and renew disinfectant every 20 minutes or less when cleaning a specific area. Sodexo team members are cleaning all horizontal and vertical surfaces to hand height, especially frequently touched points including: light switches/pulls, door handles and plates, tables, desks, chairs, cabinets, and keyboards. 

How will common areas in buildings like Lilly Library, Allen Center, and Fine Arts Center be cleaned?

Sodexo Campus Services is using approved cleaning and disinfecting products according to manufacturer’s instructions on a daily basis. Employees wear gloves when cleaning and renew disinfectant every 20 minutes or less when cleaning a specific area. Sodexo team members clean all horizontal and vertical surfaces to hand height, especially frequently touched points including: light switches/pulls, door handles and plates, elevator controls, tables, desks, chairs, cabinets, keyboards, dispensers, taps, sink fixtures, shower fixtures, toilet flush handles, toilet seats, bathroom handrails, etc. 

What role does Campus Services play in the cleaning of residence halls?

Sodexo Campus Services provides daily cleaning services in common areas of independent men’s residence halls. Sodexo Campus Services uses approved cleaning and disinfecting products according to manufacturer’s instructions. Employees wear gloves when cleaning and renew disinfectant every 20 minutes or less. Sodexo team members clean all horizontal and vertical surfaces to hand height, especially frequently touched points including: light switches/pulls, door handles and plates, elevator controls, tables, desks, chairs, cabinets, dispensers, sink fixtures, common restroom toilet flush handles, toilet seats, bathroom handrails, etc.

What role does Campus Services play in the cleaning of fraternities?

Sodexo Campus Services is cleaning common areas and communal restrooms in fraternities twice each week using approved cleaning and disinfecting products according to manufacturer’s instructions. Employees wear gloves when cleaning and will renew disinfectant every 20 minutes or less when cleaning a specific area. In addition, Sodexo staff has trained and educated fraternity members on proper daily cleaning and disinfecting techniques. Sodexo also provides the fraternities with the proper cleaning and disinfecting products and instructions for their use. This includes the installation of various hand sanitizing stations at key points of entry into each house along with a few additional areas.

How are ventilation systems different this year than in the past?

Scientists who study airborne transmission of disease have recognized the potential for inhalation exposure to viruses in microscopic respiratory droplets (droplet nuclei) at distances up to several meters (i.e., within a room). Retrospective studies revealed this to be the case with the SARS virus in 2002 and the MERS virus in 2012. It has also been shown for influenza viruses. Aerosol scientists believe this will also prove to be the case for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. CDC guidance is currently based on large respiratory droplet and surface transmission of SARS-CoV-2.

Based on these recommendations, it is therefore critical that the Wabash community practices mask wearing, physical distancing, and hand washing. Confined settings with poor ventilation are particularly problematic and should be avoided. There are currently no published studies indicating that SARS-CoV-2 can be spread from room-to-room through ventilation ducts in facilities with a low burden of virus (i.e. non-health care settings). Aerosol scientists have recommended consideration of additional mitigation steps to prevent airborne spread of SARS-CoV-2 including: (1) maximizing effective ventilation by supplying outdoor air and minimizing recirculated air, (2) supplementing general ventilation with high efficiency filtration and ultraviolet lights, and (3) Avoiding overcrowding of buildings. While some of these recommendations are relatively inexpensive and potentially easier to implement depending on existing building HVAC systems, others will be more problematic.

Sodexo Campus Services, Heapy Engineering, and College officials have studied recommendations from the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) and the CDC and continue to follow the developing recommendations. Every HVAC system in all campus buildings has been reviewed and the College has made adjustments for each facility. The College’s approach is to maximize ventilation and follow CDC recommendations for opening windows at the start of each day and forcing more outside air through ventilation units. Pushing ventilation up will tax heating systems in some buildings during cold winter months.

What could we do to reduce the strain on Campus Services and take ownership of our own work areas?

Students and employees are highly encouraged to empty their trash and recycling in receptacles in common areas and take responsibility for wiping down their own offices and work areas. This serves the dual purpose of reducing strain on Campus Services while also limiting outside exposure to individual work and living areas.

Human Resources / Work from Home

May I come to campus if a member of my household has been quarantined due to contact with a laboratory confirmed case of COVID-19?

If the family member is asymptomatic, you do not need to quarantine and may come to campus unless your health care provider advises otherwise. The CDC has provided guidance to prevent spread within a household. Contact Cathy Metz with any questions you may have.

May I come to campus if a member of my household has symptoms of COVID-19 and is awaiting testing or test results?

You and the members of your household should self quarantine until an alternate diagnosis is made, your family member receives a negative COVID-19 test result, or your health care provider advises otherwise. Make Cathy Metz aware of the situation and discuss with her options for remote work and any other questions you may have.

What should employees do if they develop COVID-19 or are identified as a close contact, e.g., a family member contracts the virus?

Indicating on the COVID Pass app that you have tested positive for COVID-19 or have been exposed will trigger a STOP message on your app that is automatically communicated to the Director of Human Resources. The College’s guidance is to follow the quarantine/isolation timeline calculator provided by the Indiana State Department of Health in consultation with your primary care provider.

For those of us with school-age children and no childcare available, what accommodations are available if our children are quarantined or shift to e-learning?

Please contact Director of Human Resources Cathy Metz to request special accommodations. Please do not disclose the reason for the accommodation initially. Cathy will contact you if more information is needed in regard to the request.

What if a medical condition prevents me from coming to work?

Please notify Director of Human Resources Cathy Metz to make request for an accommodation. Please do not disclose the reason for the accommodation initially. Cathy will contact you if more information is needed in regard to the request.

Faculty and Staff Travel

When traveling off of campus for College business, should staff self-isolate for any period of time before returning to campus?

Individuals returning from outside the local area should discuss with their supervisor (in consultation with campus medical professionals) the risk of them bringing disease back to campus. Considerations should include the extent of spread in the destination and the nature of the interactions while away.

What should College employees do if they are planning personal travel or vacation?

Staff and faculty are encouraged to continue to abide by the College’s COVID mitigation strategies – wearing masks, maintaining physical distance, hand washing, and avoiding close contacts – while traveling in-state or out-of-state for personal time off or vacation. For those employees whose travel puts them in situations where mitigation strategies cannot be maintained (e.g., large, crowded gatherings), the College expects employees to follow the CDC’s guidelines for the risks of traveling during the pandemic and how to quarantine when returning to campus.

General COVID-19 FAQ

Is there a COVID-19 vaccine?

Two vaccines from Pfizer/BioNTech and Moderna have received FDA approval and more vaccines are expected to be approved early in 2021. The vaccines will be distributed on a risk-based and vaccine availability protocol based on guidelines from the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) of the CDC that will be adjusted at the state level by state health departments. In Indiana, health care workers, residents/staff of long term care facilities, and those over 70 years old are receiving the first doses. This will likely be followed by essential workers, older individuals, and those with underlying high-risk health conditions. It is likely that most of the Wabash student body will not be able to receive vaccine before mid to late spring unless a student falls into a high-risk group. The vaccines are not expected to have a significant impact on Wabash COVID-19 mitigation efforts during the spring semester. We will continue to distance, wear masks, and wash/sanitize our hands.

I have been vaccinated. Will I be required to quarantine and/or be included in surveillance testing?

You will still be required to participate in campus surveillance and athletic COVID-19 testing and to enter your data into the Wabash COVID Pass symptom monitoring app daily. You will not be required to quarantine if you are identified as a close contact of a person with COVID-19 if you meet all the following criteria: (1) you are fully vaccinated (i.e., more than two weeks following receipt of the second dose in a two-dose series, or more than two weeks following receipt of one dose of a single-dose vaccine; (2) you are within three months following receipt of the last dose in the series; or (3) you have remained asymptomatic since the current COVID-19 exposure. If you do develop symptoms, you must isolate according to CDC Guidance and contact the Student Health Center.

What can I do to stay healthy?

  • Practice physical distancing of at least six feet, wash your hands frequently and/or use hand sanitizer.

  • Wear a cloth face mask when you are in public and are not able to stay six feet apart from those around you.

  • Avoid people who look ill.

  • Avoid touching your face, eyes, nose and mouth.

  • Stay home if you are sick.

  • Wipe down high-touch surfaces daily using a disinfectant (be sure and read the instructions).

  • Eat healthy.

  • Exercise regularly.

  • Get at least eight hours of sleep per night on a regular schedule.

  • Maintain a normal daytime schedule.

How can I reduce the spread of the virus?

  • We know the virus spreads when people are in close contact with one another and that you don’t have to have any symptoms to spread the virus to others. The most important thing you can do to reduce infecting others is to maintain physical distancing of at least six feet and avoid small, crowded indoor spaces with poor ventilation.

  • When Wabash re-opens, we will require all students, faculty, and staff to wear cloth facemasks that cover the nose and mouth when they can't maintain physical distancing of at least six feet. This requirement will apply everywhere on the Wabash campus, including living units.

  • Everyone will need to practice frequent handwashing or cleaning their hands using at least 60% alcohol-based hand sanitizer. It is crucial that you avoid touching your face, mouth, nose or eyes. See our handwashing instructions to the tune of “Old Wabash”.

  • You should cough and sneeze into your elbow, sleeve or better yet use a tissue.

  • We will strongly recommend that everyone limit in-person social interactions with visitors who are not part of the Wabash community. This includes gatherings such as parties, etc. If a person visits from outside our community, he or she must practice the prevention strategies listed above.

  • We may require you to quarantine if you are returning to campus from travel to a high-risk area, both in the U.S. and Internationally.

  • For those students who become infected and are unable to leave campus (or it would not be wise to do so), the College will provide alternate housing for those in isolation or quarantine. COVID-positive students will be placed together in special living quarters.

  • The College has stepped up and will continue its disinfection practices, and asks students, staff, and faculty to pitch in to ensure we all adhere to strategies to keep our environment clean.

What should I do if I think I have COVID-19?

The CDC indicates the following symptoms are linked to COVID-19:

  • Fever

  • Cough

  • Shortness of Breath

  • Chills

  • Muscle Pain

  • Headache

  • Sore Throat

  • Loss of Taste/Smell

  • Congestion or Runny Nose

  • Nausea, Diarrhea, or Vomiting

If you are experiencing these symptoms, stay home and contact Nurse Amidon in the Student Health Center. Most people with COVID-19 have mild illness and can recover at home without medical care. Do not leave your room, except to get medical care. Isolate yourself and do not visit public areas.

Call 911 immediately if you have any of these EMERGENCY WARNING SIGNS:

  • Trouble Breathing

  • Persistent Pain or Pressure in the Chest

  • Confusion or Inability to Arouse or Wake Up

  • Bluish Lips or Face

If you call 911, tell the operator you think you may have COVID-19, OR go to the Crawfordsville Emergency Room north of Crawfordsville on US 231 (call ahead at 765.364.3132 and tell them you are coming and think you may have COVID-19).

  • Read more about the symptoms of COVID-19. You can also use the CDC Coronavirus Self-Checker chat bot that will help you determine what type of help you need to seek.

  • If you are sick and don’t have severe symptoms, ISOLATE YOURSELF AT HOME OR IN YOUR ROOM. If you are not on campus, contact your private health care provider for advice. If you are on campus, email Nurse Amidon or call the Student Health Center at 765.361.6265. Please review the CDC’s recommendations for self-isolation.

  • Fortunately, 80% of people infected with the coronavirus will have mild disease and make a full recovery just by staying isolated and treating their symptoms.

What should I do if I have been diagnosed with COVID-19?

Contact the Student Health Center. Isolate yourself and follow the CDC Guidance on What to Do If You Are Sick and the Indiana State Department of Health Home Care Instructions. If you are not able to travel to your home to recover, Wabash will provide living space for you. Do not share cups, utensils, lip balm, e-cigarettes or other smoking devices, etc.

What should I do if I have been exposed to someone who has COVID-19?

Contact the Student Health Center for advice. Depending on your exposure, you may need to be quarantined for 10-14 days from the last date you had contact with the infected person. This means you must stay at home or in your room on campus and monitor yourself for symptoms. Please read the CDC’s recommendations about quarantine.

What is the difference between quarantine and isolation?

Quarantine: Quarantine is used to keep someone who might have been exposed to COVID-19 away from others. Someone in self-quarantine stays separated from others, and they limit movement outside of their home or current place. A person may have been exposed to the virus without knowing it (for example, when traveling or out in the community), or they could have the virus without feeling symptoms. Quarantine helps limit further spread of COVID-19.

Isolation:Isolation is used to separate sick people from healthy people. People who are in isolation should stay home. In the home, anyone sick should separate themselves from others by staying in a specific “sick” bedroom or space and using a different bathroom (if possible).

When can I go back to school or work if I have been diagnosed with COVID-19?

Follow the CDC Guidance on Discontinuation of Isolation for Persons with COVID-19 Not in Healthcare Settings. You must contact the Student Health Center to get final clearance to return to class. In order to return to work, please have your primary care physician issue a release.

What’s the best way to take care of someone who has COVID-19?

What medications can I use to treat my COVID-19 symptoms?

Symptoms such as headaches, body aches, and fever can be treated with medications such as acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Advil, Motrin). Drink plenty of fluids and rest as much as possible.

There are some therapies, such as monoclonal antibodies, that are starting to become available for outpatient treatment. The use of these products is limited to specific criteria. You can read more here.

Medications such as azithromycin (Zithromax) and hydroxychloroquine have been shown in multiple studies to NOT have a place in either the prevention or treatment of COVID-19.

What if I have a mental health emergency?

Being cooped up inside and having limited social interactions can be taxing to anyone and can also cause anxiety. Students have access to the Wabash Counseling Center during the academic year. Contact Jamie Douglas or Laura Dolph to arrange a virtual or telephone visit. You can also call and leave a message for Jamie at 765.361.5592 or Laura at 765.361.6252.


COVID-19 INTERNET RESOURCES