Natural Health Sciences Student Open Forum
David Slykhuis (00:00):
All right. Hello, everyone. I'm so glad that you could join us. My name is David Slykhuis. I'm the assistant dean in the College of Natural and Health Sciences. We have assembled here for you a very aghast panel to answer all of your questions and to get you prepared for what is going to happen this fall as we are in this new and exciting time. We're going to make sure that you are prepared for what's going to happen here. As we are moving forward, I just want to give you a little bit of idea of what this session is going to look like. What we're going to attempt to do is answer all of your questions.
David Slykhuis (00:40):
If you have a question, excuse me, you should see a question and answer feature at the bottom of your screen. Please, at any time, go ahead and type in your question. We will see those questions. We will either answer them right there in line, or we will make sure that we answer them by a panel member that is with us. We have just a couple of remarks before we get going. Then I will say a few words just about some general things as well. We're going to start with the dean of the College of Natural and Health Sciences, Dr. Burkhard Englert. He's going to say a welcome and get us started. Dr. Englert.
Burkhard Englert (01:20):
Hi, good afternoon. We are very excited that you're joining the open forum of the College of Natural and Health Sciences at UNC. My name is Burkhard Englert. I'm the dean of the College of Natural and Health Sciences. Our college consists of four schools and seven departments. Just to give you an update, our four schools are biological sciences, Mathematical sciences, nursing, and sport and exercise. Then we have also seven departments. The seven departments are audiology and speech language sciences, chemistry and biochemistry, community health, earth and atmospheric science, human Services, nutrition and dietetics and physics and astronomy.
Burkhard Englert (02:15):
For our meeting, I want to introduce our panel. First, you already met Dr. David Slykhuis, who is the assistant dean in our college. Then we have Dr. Dani Brittain. She's the associate dean of NHS. Then Beckie Croissant, she's the director of the advising center for our college. Dr. Melissa Henry, she's the director of School of Nursing. Then we have Dr. Julie Hanks, the department chair of audiology and speech language sciences. We have Dr. Gary Heise, the director of sports and exercise. We have Dr. Mit McGlaughlin, the director of biological sciences, and finally, Dr. Virgil Pierce, the director of mathematical sciences.
Burkhard Englert (03:12):
Now, you will be able to ask us questions, and I will hand it over back to David. David.
David Slykhuis (03:21):
All right. Thank you, Dean Englert. I appreciate that. Just a couple of general announcements and bits of information before we get started and can dive into some real specific things about the College of Natural and Health Sciences. If you are looking for updates, the best place to go is to this website that you see on your screen on that first line there. That is where the university will keep everything updated. As you probably realize, things change very rapidly, so that's always the best place to go for the latest information. The last bullet there also mentions that UNC has put in a mask policy, that masks are required on campus. They're required by students, by faculty, by everyone who is on campus, so just be prepared for that as you come back.
David Slykhuis (04:13):
You can look at the class schedule. This is another good link to go. You can find all of the classes in the fall. When you do look at that class schedule, you will find different codes and so forth that will indicate how that class is being presented this fall. I just want to run through those really quickly at the beginning. If you see a TR code, that means it's a traditional class, and they will be taught face to face. These will be many of these smaller classes that only have a limited number of individuals in it that can all fit into the classroom safely. Those will be taught just like a normal college class.
David Slykhuis (04:49):
If you see MF, that is going to stand for mixed face to face. This is going to be a little bit different. You will still attend this class in person when it's on your schedule, but say it's a Monday, Wednesday, Friday class, you probably won't attend all three days. It is more likely that you might attend Monday, then a different section or a third of your class will attend on Wednesday, and another third may attend on Friday. That's how we're going to keep the numbers low and ensure social distancing. On the days you're not in class, your professor will communicate through Canvas, and let you know what you were to be doing on those days and what day you were to be showing up as well.
David Slykhuis (05:32):
Other class formats that you may see, you may see synchronous online as a format. That is a class that will meet entirely online, so will not have a room on campus, but it will meet at a given time, so it won't be self paced in any way. It won't be that you can log on whenever you want. You will have a certain time and day that you log on like a normal class. You just won't have a room. It'll be done virtually. A blended online is a little bit of a mix where you will have synchronous times where you're expected to show up and be ready to go. You will also have asynchronous times where you will be doing things offline at different times where the whole class isn't together.
David Slykhuis (06:11):
Then you may also see a fully asynchronous course. In that course, you'll still expect to have due dates and have things done at certain points during the semester, but you will not be expected to meet as a group with your class at a given day and time. All right, so this is our panel, Dean Englert already introduced everyone. We're all very excited to be here and to answer your questions. Again, I hope that you're going to the question and answer feature that is at the bottom of the Zoom link, and putting in questions there for us to ask.
David Slykhuis (06:55):
Let's see. All right, so the first question that we have, I'm going to throw this, Mit, to you. MiT is the director of biology, but this is also a chemistry question, and units are very similar. How will the departments make sure that classes that are traditionally taught in class like chemistry will be understood by those learners who have difficulty with online?
Mit McGlaughlin (07:27):
What we're going to be doing for most of our classes is that we will have a hybrid model where some students will be attending face to face class each week. With that hybrid model, all of the class interactions will be recorded and posted online and available for any students that aren't there on a particular day. Then we are planning on supplementing everything with more faculty office hours and more availability of graduate teaching assistants who teach most at the labs so that students are able to access resources and support.
Mit McGlaughlin (08:07):
The other thing that I'd mentioned and I think lots of incoming students have questions related to this, most students, whether you're in high school or college, experienced some form of online learning last spring. That was probably not the best form of online learning, because people did it rapidly, and they didn't build out the structure to make it as functional as possible. For all of our science courses moving forward, we now have the time to make sure that students are going to have the best experience possible.
David Slykhuis (08:41):
Thank you, Mit. Next question we have, Julie Hanks, I think I'm going to ask you to answer this one. This question is how will volunteering requirements for classes work? Will we still be required to go into the community for different classes?
Julie Hanks (08:58):
That's a good question. As Mit mentioned, we've been adjusting our courses. That includes the assignments. In a couple of my classes, for instance, that I'm teaching in a traditional way, there is typically a requirement to go out into the community or into our speech and hearing clinic to volunteer or observe. What I've decided to do in those situations, since everything seems to be changing rapidly, is I've made multiple options. For folks that it's not convenient or they're not comfortable, they will have an option to do an online observation of a speech and hearing clinic experience.
Julie Hanks (09:45):
Others may be able to go into one of our local schools that we have partnered with following their guidelines as well as ours. In a nutshell, we are being flexible and also keeping in mind with those options of what we want students to learn the most. We've had time to put some of these things together over the summer.
David Slykhuis (10:12):
Thank you, Julie. All right, next question is about lab classes again, so Mit, you are back up. The question is with lab classes being moved, at least partially online, there's some understanding that there will be pairs of students going in, possibly a group of four where two go in one week and two go in the next week, so how are they going to make sure that they get all of the information that they need week to week?
Mit McGlaughlin (10:42):
What we're doing and for most incoming students, and you wouldn't necessarily just be a bio major, but would be taking Bio 110, which is Introductory Biology. Something that we emphasize in that class is that students are getting research experience and provided with hands-on learning, doing undergraduate research. Our standard model is that we have research groups of four students. What we will be doing for the fall is your research group will be divided into... will be split in half. Two members of your research group will come one week, and the other two members will come the next week. Now, what we'll be doing is that for the off week, when you are assigned to be online, you will be doing activities that align with what is going on with the hands-on group.
Mit McGlaughlin (11:36):
Then we are also going to... The instructor has created demonstration videos of all activities that are going on in the lab. That will also be available for each and every student. That is not dependent upon the quality of your lab group member, but has been created by the instructor so that is available to each and every student, even if they're not participating in a particular activity on a particular week.
David Slykhuis (12:09):
Thank you, Mit. Mit, I'm going to keep you up if you could, because there's also a question. Will there be bio and chem labs that are just doing virtual or online activities as well?
Mit McGlaughlin (12:21):
Yes, there will. For almost all introductory bio courses, we have an option developed where a student could complete the course entirely online if they have a health restriction or they're uncomfortable being on campus. Bor bio 110, we have a fully online lecture section that students can register, and we have two online lab sections. Then for our other introductory classes, a student just needs to reach out to the instructor and let them know that they're uncomfortable being on campus, and the instructor should have already sent all students that are registered information.
Mit McGlaughlin (13:05):
Then they will let an individual student know how the lab and or lecture portion will work, and how it can be successfully completed entirely online.
David Slykhuis (13:19):
Thanks, Mits. I think I can give you a break here for a second. Next question, I think maybe I'll send this to Dani. Dani is the associate dean at our college. She's also been part of the re-entry task forces. We've been planning a lot of these things. There's a question about a student who has currently signed up for the classes, and all of these classes happen to be in an online format. What are you anticipating for this semester? Will they stay that way, or is there actually a chance during the semester that they could be changed back to face-to-face?
Dani Brittain (14:00):
That's a great question. Thank you for that question. Currently how we have the course schedule, if they are scheduled to be online, then instructors have gone to considerable amount of effort to give the students a wonderful experience to be able to learn in that format. They will stay in the online format if they are currently online right now, but that's a great question. Just like Dr. McGlaughlin had said previously, making that transition allowed for the instructors to really get the pedagogy that these students will need for those online classes so...
David Slykhuis (14:41):
Thanks, Dani. All right, next question is going to be for Jenna Finley. This question is is UNC thinking about going to a longer winter break, where after Thanksgiving students don't come back, or are they sticking with the regular break schedule?
Jenna Finley (15:01):
We are sticking to the regular scheduled semester, so students will come back after break. I will say for some students, they will want to consider just staying through the Thanksgiving break, I think, just to be aware that the residence halls do stay open during that time. I know some students for whatever reason don't want to go home to family members who may be high risk, for example, and just know that there's a place for you to be.
David Slykhuis (15:34):
Thank you. Let's see. For this question, this is a generic question. The question is if my student is in a mixed format, and not in a class that day, will they be able to watch it in real time, or do they have to wait for recording to be uploaded? Let's flip that question. Virgil, will you take that one, please?
Virgil Pierce (16:14):
Sure. I was actually trying to figure out if there was some way for me to tell you. I'm willing to take a shot at that one. I'm the director of mathematical sciences, so we have courses in mathematics, statistics and computer science. There's going to be a wide variety of things happening in those mixed format courses. I would say the answer to your question is it depends. Hopefully, the instructor is going to let students know either before class or at a minimum the first day of class, but what most people are using for meeting with their courses are going to be Zoom or a recording system we have in the classroom called Panopto.
Virgil Pierce (16:59):
Those record to the cloud, and so there's no waiting to upload. Those are automatically available in our learning management system that students can access as soon as the class is finished. There's a short amount of processing time, but otherwise, those videos are immediately available. I want to say there's not going to be a long wait for uploading. There will be some where it will definitely be available in real time.
David Slykhuis (17:30):
Thank you, Virgil. Let's see. Maybe this is another question for Jenna, again. Will there be opportunities for study groups for incoming freshmen? Is there a chance for groups to get together on campus?
Jenna Finley (17:47):
Yes, I think the general guidance is students can be in groups fewer than 10, still socially distant and wearing masks. When you think of our study spaces and residence halls, we will Have capacities listed on our spaces. The library is similar. I think we have Annie from the library here as well. Yes, there are still be spaces available outside in the early fall as another great place to study, but you will have to wear a mask and stay six feet apart from one another.
David Slykhuis (18:27):
Thank you. Next question, Beckie, I'm going to toss this one to you. Beckie leads our advising center in the NHS. This is about getting classes. Is there a way for students to schedule so they get no online classes?
Beckie Croissant (18:44):
There is. I will be honest and say that a lot of courses are full right now, but definitely, you can meet with your advisor. We could look at finding courses that just meet on campus. We do have quite a few courses that have been moved to our university center. They're meeting in ballrooms. We've moved classrooms into rec center, so doing everything we can to have classes on campus. The answer is work with your advisor and see if they can help you move around your schedule.
David Slykhuis (19:22):
Thank you. For this next one is a little bit of a general question, so I'm going to ask a couple of our unit leaders to jump in here. The question is around testing. The question is regardless of what form of instruction takes place in the classroom, if it's mixed, face to face or online or whatever, are all major tests going to be done in purpose? Will those be online as well? Virgil, go ahead.
Virgil Pierce (19:59):
For mathematics, statistics, and computer science courses, well, with the exception of Stat 150, which is not actually in my department, I can't tell you what's going to happen with that one. Our instructors are... I'm going to say all but I may be off by one or two, but they're not going to be courses that you'll be taking. They are building assessments, exams and things like that and quizzes that you would take online. We're not planning on doing them in person.
David Slykhuis (20:33):
Go ahead, Julie.
Julie Hanks (20:36):
I can answer it. For my department, we are going to have a mix, so we have a number of courses that are being taught traditionally, and there is enough physical space for students to spread out when they are taking tests for courses that are hybrid in nature. Most of those exams will be handled online because we cannot get everyone necessarily in the room at the same time. Ours will be in both different formats. You'll know that typically on day one of a class as part of reviewing over the syllabus and what the expectations are.
David Slykhuis (21:16):
Mit, did you want to take a shot at that as well?
Mit McGlaughlin (21:20):
Yes, I'd be happy to. For most of the introductory biology courses, the exams will be online. That is to be able to accommodate all students taking an exam at one time. Our capacities for our big classes, more than 50 students, we no longer have rooms that can fit everyone at one time. Since we want all students to have the same experience and the same materials at the same time, we will be delivering those class or those exams entirely online. As I mentioned earlier for biology, that helps accommodate any student that wants to be entirely online, and that they will be taking the same exams and having the same experience as a student that is in a hybrid situation.
David Slykhuis (22:10):
Mit, if I could keep you on the hot seat just for a second, this is a specific question about chemistry. You may not know this exactly, but do you know if the Chem 103 labs are going to have online option?
Mit McGlaughlin (22:25):
I believe that they are. Now, my recommendation with any course, and it looks like Beckie might know because she popped on for a minute, is to reach out to whoever the instructor is that's listed, and know for all of you, incoming and new students, that our instructors are incredibly helpful, and they want to get you the information that you need to be successful and to know whether or not a course is right. You could email the listed instructor for the lecture section of Chem 103.
Beckie Croissant (22:54):
I just wanted to also add similar to what Dr. McGlaughlin said. I do know that because chemistry labs are hybrid, they will be recording each session when the students aren't there. You can request to be online for the whole thing.
David Slykhuis (23:17):
All right, Beckie, can I get you to stay on just for a second? You might be able to answer this one. This question is tutoring going to be available?
Beckie Croissant (23:25):
It is. Yes. It will be available both in person and virtually. In the spring when we moved online quickly, tutoring did an excellent job with moving online as well. I think Virgil can answer this as well in terms of the math lab, what their plan is, but for tutoring, it will be available in person and virtual.
Virgil Pierce (23:54):
The math lab will be run entirely online. That actually went really well for us in the spring, and so I think that may become the format for how we run our math specific tutoring. Now, there are two places to get tutoring in mathematics. There's the General University Level Tutoring Center, which will have in person tutoring for mathematics, but then within the math department, we also run... It's not necessarily tutoring but we call it studying. It's a chance for you to meet with instructors of the course that you're taking, not necessarily your instructor, but people who've taught the course or are teaching the course that semester.
Virgil Pierce (24:30):
The way that'll work is there's going to be a Google calendar that will have the schedule of what course people can help you with, and a link to how to connect with them. It will be a Zoom link for a lot of people. I was using different discord in the spring and so there was a link to my discord channel for people to join me.
David Slykhuis (24:55):
Thank you, Virgil. I'm going to jump over to Annie, who is on from the libraries. There's a question, will the libraries be open in any capacity this fall?
Yes, indeed, the libraries will be open our regular hours. That means until midnight, Sunday through Thursday, until 6:00, I think, on Fridays and Saturdays. We have plans in place for capacity limited study rooms to speak back to that study question. We have a lot of different study spaces in the libraries, of course, including really large spaces. Our subject librarians will be available virtually just like this as we have been since spring, as well as having face to face service at our service desks. Thanks for the question.
David Slykhuis (25:48):
Thank you. It looks like our Provost Mark Anderson has joined us, so I encourage you to continue to put questions in the question and answer section, but I am going to ask and See if Mark would just like to say a word or two to everyone who is online.
Mark Anderson (26:05):
Thanks, David. Sorry I'm late. I had to attend the call with the CEOs of the other universities in Andy's place. This is a great opportunity. I don't want to take much time, but this is great opportunity for you to ask questions about the fall semester. Our faculty have really been working hard to generate a robust on campus experience. The College of Natural and Health Sciences has some unique challenges, laboratory courses, coops, clinical placements, et cetera. We had to pivot in the spring, and many of you know that we did, and we did so successfully.
Mark Anderson (26:46):
This gives us an opportunity to plan but we're working closely with our professional organizations to figure out how we can best meet the learning objectives of our courses. I really appreciate your attendance. We're looking forward to having you here on campus. Turn it back to David so we can answer more questions.
David Slykhuis (27:11):
Thank you very much. We appreciate you taking the time to join us. All right, let's see. Let's go back to our questions. This one, Dani, I think I'm going to go back to you for this one. Is there a deadline that instructors should be communicating with their students about the detailed plans for the upcoming semester beyond just whether or not it's synchronous or asynchronous?
Dani Brittain (27:36):
There's not an official deadline. However, we have strongly encouraged faculty to reach out to students and or students reach out to them to illustrate how the class will be conducted. If you haven't heard anything about your particular class, I really encourage you to reach out to the instructor so that you just can have that communication flow going. Great question.
David Slykhuis (28:06):
Thank you. Let's see. Virgil, a question for you. Is calculus going to be online and through Zoom, or how is that happening?
Virgil Pierce (28:16):
Yes, so our plan for calculus is for it to be mostly synchronous online through Zoom. I think they are backing off of the four day week schedule to be slightly less, but that may be something they do later in the semester. I think in the first few weeks, they're going to largely do it synchronously.
David Slykhuis (28:38):
Thanks. Let's see. Jumping around here a little bit, let's go, Jenna, another question for you. How will mask wearing be enforced especially in class.
Jenna Finley (28:52):
You will not be able to enter a classroom or a building on campus without a mask, so you should expect to bring a full wardrobe of masks is what I've been telling our first year students. Be prepared. If you need to change it throughout the day or you don't want to do laundry every night, bring multiple fabric mask. We will have on a few places on campus temporary masks available if you forget, and you have to commute so that we can help you out there, but you should be prepared to have your own mask, to be required to wear it in all public places with a very few exceptions when you're eating in the dining room, for example, or working out in the rec center will be a couple of those exceptions.
Jenna Finley (29:43):
All of our health policies are enforced through the student code of conduct. The mask wearing is a state order at this point in time in Colorado, so just be aware of that when you're in the community as well.
David Slykhuis (30:02):
Thank you. Beckie, I have an advising question for you. Now I lost it. Will students be allowed to meet basically in person with advisers was the question?
Beckie Croissant (30:17):
Yes, so all but one of our advisers will be having office hours on campus, three days a week, a week in the advising center, and then the other two days a week, they will be working remotely from home and using Zoom if you want to meet face to face. Our biology and chemistry adviser will be working remotely all semester because of a health risk, but everyone else will have in person advising hours.
David Slykhuis (30:51):
Just a follow-up to that, Beckie, do you know when those in person hours will start? Will they start before the semester?
Beckie Croissant (30:57):
Oh, great question. They actually will start the week of August 10th.
David Slykhuis (31:03):
Great, thank you. Dani, I might kick this question back to you. Here's the question. Are classes that are currently listed as face to face able to swiftly move online if needed? Is there a plan B that has been worked out?
Dani Brittain (31:22):
That's a great question. I am so proud of all the questions we're getting today, by the way. We are certainly ready to move our courses online if the public health orders of the state require that we need to do such and or the president, Andy Feinstein, makes a decision in that direction. Yes, we are prepared to move in that direction to put courses online. We had a good amount of experience in the spring, so we have some of that experience on our side in terms of if we have to do that again. Thanks for the question.
David Slykhuis (32:02):
Thank you, Dani.
Virgil Pierce (32:03):
David, I would add to that that a number of our departments have fully online programs, both graduate and undergraduate that already existed. We have a lot of expertise in our college and here at the university about teaching online. This is not something we're new at. Even the faculty who are new at it, they have people that they can go to to get help.
David Slykhuis (32:26):
Thanks. Hey, Virgil, I want you to stay right there because I'll start with you with this next question and ask probably several unit leaders. How do you expect office hours are going to work?
Virgil Pierce (32:36):
That's a great question. I think it's going to vary greatly from professor to professor. The thing I would keep in mind is some professors have higher risk than others or have family members who have higher risks. I think it's going to vary greatly from person to person and course the course. Myself, I'm planning a mix of face to face but a lot more availability online, some hours when students will know that they can just reach me by clicking a Zoom link.
David Slykhuis (33:10):
Thank you. Let's maybe check with at least one other unit leader. Gary, we haven't, I don't think, had a chance to hear from you yet. What are you thinking for office hours in your unit?
Gary Heise (33:20):
Thanks for the question. Similar to what Dr. Pierce in mathematics just stated, we're going to have a mix. We do have some conference spaces where we have faculty offices where we can meet with students face to face in a larger room, because many of our offices may not be large enough for health guidelines to have more than one person in there, but we do have conference space in all of our office spaces that allow students to meet with faculty. There'll be a pretty robust online availability for faculty when they are. I would encourage all students to really take advantage of meeting with faculty when you can, whether virtually or in person. Good question.
David Slykhuis (34:04):
Gary, I've got another question for you. I'll just keep you on screen. If a student has signed up for hybrid classes, and they find out that they prefer to just to go online, is there an option for that, or will they need to stick with the hybrid option?
Gary Heise (34:22):
For many of our classes, I'm afraid to say we might need to be sticking with a mostly hybrid version because we don't have multiple sections to offer. Now, that's different between some units. Some units have multiple sections. Say of a chemistry class, they give you options. The other issue in sport and exercise Science is that we will have that hybrid face to face portion of the hybrid model being fairly important because there will likely be some physical activity component whether it be on the science side or on the physical education side or something like that.
Gary Heise (34:58):
For our students to move to fully online will be more difficult than other units, so hopefully that helps.
David Slykhuis (35:06):
Are there any of the other unit leaders that would maybe like to answer that one as well?
Mit McGlaughlin (35:19):
I'll touch in for biology. We're fully ready to move anything that we need to online. We're trying to meet students' needs and make sure particularly for lab courses that students get the hands on experiences that are so essential to learning sciences. I know some of you have heard that we have a hybrid model, where some students will be on campus one week, and some students on campus the other week. We're being very strategic in what activities and experiences students have so that all students get the high quality hands-on experiences that are essential to disciplines in our college, and that they're not only there for weeks maybe where they don't do anything that's impactful.
David Slykhuis (36:09):
Excellent. Julie, did you want to follow up as well?
Julie Hanks (36:14):
Sure. I would piggyback a little bit what was said previously in that in audiology and speech language sciences, well, we only have single sections of courses. All but one of our undergraduate courses is ready to go completely online if needed. We've done online full program teaching for years, so a lot of ours are ready to go. That being said, we do have one course and some graduate courses that do require face to face because of the clinical training components. For the most part, undergrads are ready to go all online if we need to.
David Slykhuis (36:57):
Thank you, Julie. I just want to continue to encourage everyone to put their questions in the question and answer. We're getting great questions so far. Next one I have actually is for Melissa Henry, who is leading our nursing program here. Melissa, if someone is a nursing student, and the class is listed as being in person, will those classes stay as being in person or face to face throughout the semester?
Melissa Henry (37:27):
That's a great question. For most of our undergraduate courses, they're either blended face to face or anything that requires a laboratory component. Those are listed as on campus. We do plan to continue those as long as we can. We are changing our modality in our labs a bit to make sure that we're able to comply with the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment guidelines, maintaining social distancing and mask wearing. We have some pretty strict infection control policies in place for our labs. We plan to do and continue those face-to-face to allow students the opportunities to get hands on for the laboratory courses.
Melissa Henry (38:09):
Then our clinical courses, we're working with all of our close clinical partners to make sure that we're keeping students safe by putting policies in place for students to enter into those experiences. They all look just a little bit different depending on the semester and the agency that the students are engaging with, but we are working closely with all of our partners across the region for those experiences to be continued through the fall semester. We'll pivot if we need to.
Melissa Henry (38:38):
We really have three different modalities for fall. Clinical experiences are face to face. Laboratories and then blended face to face are online for our didac concept. That's a great question.
David Slykhuis (38:54):
All right, thanks. We have a series of questions about social distancing and health and safety procedures about what may happen on campus this fall. Jenna, I have these for you. What is going to happen if someone does contract COVID? What is the plan to handle that, and what will happen to the students who we know are in class with that student?
Jenna Finley (39:21):
When someone contracts COVID, they are expected to self isolate. If they've been exposed or if they've been tested, they also have to self quarantine. That is something that students have to comply with, and would risk being a student at UNC if they don't follow whatever directive they've been given. We do have isolation rooms set aside that are singles if they live in the residence halls. The singles have their own bathroom, and we provide meals to those students as well.
Jenna Finley (39:54):
Then they have someone that checks [inaudible 00:40:00] with them daily. They're expected to get all their medical advice from their medical provider, and let us know if they've been recommended to go out of quarantine, for example, if they have a negative test result. In terms of what happens with contact tracing, the health department does the contact tracing currently. We also have trained contact tracers on campus as well. They provide the guidance on what needs to happen in terms of other students that have been exposed. It's not necessarily a given that a whole class would need to be quarantined if there was a case in the class, or a whole residence hall be quarantined because there was a case in the residence hall.
Jenna Finley (40:49):
They really do a good job of tracing the length of time of contact whether masks were worn, all those pieces to determine what the correct course of action with each individual case would be. I saw a question related to, "Would we change any of our guidelines based on CDC recommendations?" I think it's important to know that we have to look at what CDC recommends as well as what the state health department, the Colorado Department of Higher Ed, and our Weld County Health Department recommend in terms of guidelines.
Jenna Finley (41:28):
All of our plans and the local agency is one of the most important in terms of providing guidance. The question of would we change our mass guidelines or social distancing guidelines, that would not happen unless things change at the state level, and we were directed to do so. Of course, if things with COVID dramatically change, we can anticipate changing some of the plans that we have put in place. I think since the spring, the entire situation has been very fluid. For now, we don't see any of those things changing anytime soon.
David Slykhuis (42:11):
Jenna, I'm going to follow up with you with one more. We looked at one side what kind of things we have to change for to be no mask or maybe no social distancing, a little bit normal and things have to be a lot better. On the flip side, say there's an outbreak on campus. What is the plan for that?
Jenna Finley (42:33):
Again, it's a very similar situation. We examine, we consult with the health department on what to do and how many cases they would be whether we would quarantine let's say a whole building. If someone is sick or there is an outbreak, what you can expect not to happen is we wouldn't be sending those students home, because think of you're sending people that are sick into another community or home to be sick in a different place, and that's not what the health department wants to have happen.
Jenna Finley (43:06):
We'd have people stay in place and take care of them from there. I think I'm frequently asked the question, "If my student is sick, can they come home?" Well, we can't necessarily prevent that. I think you just need to understand that that's not what the health department recommends. That happen.
David Slykhuis (43:28):
Jenna, as long as I've got you, I've got a couple more for you here. First one is with the wearing of masks, so you've said it's required and so forth to get in. What are the consequences for someone who doesn't wear a mask or refuses?
Jenna Finley (43:47):
I think in general, what you'll see or what we hope to see is a lot of conversation of, "You need to leave and come back with a mask." Ultimately, if someone is refusing to wear a mask, that'd becomes something different. Anyone can report that non-compliance to the dean of students office, and that gets handled through the Student Code of Conduct in a disciplinary hearing. There are sanctions that can be put in place, because there is such a significant risk to our community to not comply with what we're putting in place to protect one another.
Jenna Finley (44:27):
There can be significant consequences, meaning you may not be able to be a student at UNC. When we think about students, the risk to their health may be relatively low. When we think about the faculty and staff and my staff that live in the residence halls or feed students, the rest of those individuals who are working on campus will be fairly significant. We all have a responsibility to one another to come to campus to learn and to follow some very basic guidelines, we hope.
Jenna Finley (45:01):
Wash your hands. Wear a mask. Stay socially distant. If you're in a residence hall room, clean your bathroom daily. Wipe down commonly touched objects. We hope that everyone is going to comply with those pieces. Yes, there are some things that we can do as an institution if you don't, unfortunately.
David Slykhuis (45:24):
All right, just one more for you, Jenna, while I've got you. You mentioned the residence halls. What would a student do if they felt that their roommate is not following health guidelines and that is putting them at risk?
Jenna Finley (45:38):
They should either notify their residence hall staff. Every community has an RA as well as there's neighborhood coordinators that are full time staff that are responsible for multiple buildings. There's either that option or there is the option to report it to the dean of Students Office. There's a reporting format on the website. At the beginning of the year with roommates, we do provide some support for roommate conversations and agreements to be formed, so everyone's on the same page with some of these types of issues as well as all the other things that roommates can have conflict over.
Jenna Finley (46:19):
That will provide some support. There are some ways to report to us and have us help you with those conflicts.
David Slykhuis (46:28):
All right, thank you very much. You can rest for a little bit. I'll move on to someone else. I'll put Virgil on the hot seat now. I've got a couple of questions, I think, go to him. I'll start you with an easy one, Virgil. How do they access those mask services on the Google calendar that you were talking about?
Virgil Pierce (46:47):
That will be... We will have a website on our homepage that has information about how to access those services. It's not built yet, so I can't even send you the link just yet, but we had it up in the spring. We just took it down over the summer because it was not active.
David Slykhuis (47:05):
Virgil, I'll ask you this one as well. When do you think students should start purchasing course materials including Aleks codes?
Virgil Pierce (47:14):
I was hoping you'd give me this one because I'm actually not aware of any math course that's using Aleks. I'm wondering if chemistry is using Aleks, but I'm not entirely sure. I know there is a chemistry product also through Aleks. The nice thing about the... I see Beckie nodding her head, so I think I'm right. The nice thing about software like Aleks, and in math, we use a software called Infinity, is because those are access codes. You can wait to purchase them until you need them, and those become instantaneously active.
Virgil Pierce (47:53):
Those are not things you necessarily have to worry about getting ahead of time, unless you need to use your financial aid to purchase them, in which case, you need to order them through our bookstore, and then you may need to do it ahead of time because you're going to need to give time for that purchase to be shipped to you. The same thing with textbooks. I will add that in our department and I believe in our college, David or Dani, we have a lot of faculty using online and open and free textbooks.
Virgil Pierce (48:24):
Again, these are things that are going to be particularly in mathematics. These are textbooks you don't have to purchase. They are on websites. They are accessible from a phone or a tablet, and you just have them available right out of the gate.
Dani Brittain (48:40):
Yes, that's absolutely correct. Dr. Pierce, we do have open access resources in a lot of our classes, so thanks for bringing that up.
Beckie Croissant (48:47):
I wanted to add one thing that we've been sharing with students who've been coming to orientation this summer is that you don't have to purchase your textbooks. You can rent them. You can rent them from the UNC bookstore. You can also rent them digitally. It's really easy. You can also rent them at other places such as Amazon, textbooks.com, again, renting hard copy or digitally every... Those are all great ways to get your textbooks.
David Slykhuis (49:21):
Thank you all. I see that our associate provost, Dr. Nancy Matchett, has joined us. I'm going to see if she wants to just say hello, and then I have a question for her as well.
Nancy Matchett (49:31):
Hi, David, and hi, everyone. Really sorry that we got here a little bit late today. There's just a lot going on on a Monday, but I'm really happy to see so many faculty here and so many student and family participants. I'm confident that the folks here in NHS have already done a great job answering your questions. I'm happy to answer anything else you might like from our level. David, just let me know.
David Slykhuis (49:55):
All right. Well, I do have one question for you. How would a student's attendance grade be affected if they came down with COVID?
Nancy Matchett (50:05):
Their attendance grade should not be affected at all. We certainly hope that no one comes down with COVID, but if you are feeling sick at all, we don't want you to feel any pressure about coming to class. We certainly don't want to send you to a healthcare facility when they might already be overwhelmed. If students need to miss class because of illness or because of suspected illness, or because they are quarantined because of suspected contact with someone who was ill, your faculty will have makeup work or backup work prepared that you can use in lieu of any assignment that would have ordinarily graded as part of attending in class.
Nancy Matchett (50:48):
Typically, this would be some sort of online activity, but instructors will work that out on a course by course basis.
David Slykhuis (50:58):
Thank you so much. I'm so glad that you could join us.
Nancy Matchett (51:01):
David Slykhuis (51:02):
Next question, I'm going to call Mit back up here, and then maybe, Beckie, give you a second chance at this one as well. For hands-on lab sections, would you recommend that students go ahead and take those this year or push them to next year when things are perhaps more "normal?"
Mit McGlaughlin (51:20):
We would encourage students to take hands-on labs. We are the College of Natural and Health Sciences, and the sciences are inherently hands on. We are making modifications to keep all of our students and faculty and staff safe, but we are still going to provide robust hands-on experiences for students. Within biology and I think most other units, we would not encourage students to delay. Now, certainly students that have health risks might have a different calculus related to that on whether or not it is worth that risk.
Mit McGlaughlin (52:03):
But our hands-on labs, even though the lab contact face to face is going to be reduced, are still going to be high quality and robust experiences for students.
Beckie Croissant (52:17):
Great. I would like to also add some of our majors don't require science in the very first semester, so I encourage students to talk to their adviser, and see they really are nervous about taking even math or science the first semester, see if it would put them off track or if it would be okay. That's really one of the biggest things we want to make sure is that they're not getting off track in their four-year plan by not starting their science and math right away.
David Slykhuis (52:53):
Beckie, if I could just call you back up here, quick question about Aleks codes again, and Gen Chem 111 and Gen Chem 112. The question revolves around it looks like Aleks codes are good for 18 weeks or two semesters. If they plan on taking Chem 111 and Chem 112, should they buy the two semester code?
Beckie Croissant (53:17):
Yes, because they're going to use Aleks in both 111 and 112, so buying two semester code would be a good idea.
David Slykhuis (53:27):
Perfect. Thank you so much. Melissa, question for you about the number of nursing cohorts and how that system works.
Melissa Henry (53:39):
Sure. Yes, thank you for the question. I did see in the chat a question about admission of students. At this time, we are not planning on limiting the admission for nursing students to the program. We still have really great relationships with all of our clinical partners who are taking our students that our students are moving through the program as the program is laid out. If that were to change, then we may have a conversation about it, but we're not planning on it right now, and everything is moving forward as planned.
Melissa Henry (54:12):
That's a great question.
David Slykhuis (54:14):
Excellent. Thank you, Melissa. A question for Annie in the libraries, are their work setting jobs available in the libraries?
Yes, indeed, the libraries will be hiring. I think our practice will be that we open the interview process in early August. Students should use the handshake platform which they can access through the library's website or in the Career Services office on campus. I think that's what it's called. I'm sorry. I know that it's on the library's website. Find a job.
David Slykhuis (54:55):
Excellent. Thank you. Dani, I think I'm going to ask you this question again. We all understand now that masks are required on campus, but when are the instances that you could take your mask off, when nobody is around, when you're by yourself? What are those situations?
Dani Brittain (55:14):
That's another good question. It's important that you keep your mask on if you are in your classroom, or you're near people that is less than six feet or six feet or less away. When you're outside and you can do the physical distancing of six feet or more, there are instances where you can be further apart from people on campus too, but keep in mind that if you do have your mask off, you have to be very cognizant of people around you.
Dani Brittain (55:47):
Although you might be at a table and there's nobody around, just be very clear that someone could walk past or someone could be in your presence, and sit at your table or something like that. You technically can, but make sure that you're cautious when you do that.
David Slykhuis (56:05):
Thank you, Dani. Beckie, another question for you about Aleks. How do we know if we need the Aleks?
Beckie Croissant (56:13):
It will be listed in your course syllabus as one of your textbooks. That's the same for any access code for any science or math course that you have. Right now, I believe chemistry is the only program using Aleks. I believe it's just for Chem 111 and 112, but again, other programs, and the other directors can chime in here, they use access codes for their courses as well.
Virgil Pierce (56:49):
I was just going to say that while we're not using Aleks, there are other software that we're using that students will need to buy access to. Typically, we don't plan on people having to purchase that ahead of time. That'll be something that's the information is in your syllabus, and your instructor should say something in the first day of class about it.
David Slykhuis (57:11):
Thank you both. Melissa, one more question about nursing here. On days that students are on campus for nursing labs and so forth, are they required to wear a specific type of mask?
Melissa Henry (57:23):
That's a really good question. Deb Rojas, who is our lab and simulation coordinator, will be emailing all of the students in the program about coming back to campus and requirements for our laboratory experiences. We will be requiring a little bit of a higher grade fabric mask while students are in the lab. All the specifics of that will be sent out to students here soon, but three layer with a filter just for while we're in the lab space.
Melissa Henry (57:51):
That's a really great question.
David Slykhuis (58:00):
All right. Well, I want to thank everyone who's joined us today. Really appreciate all of your questions. They're very thoughtful questions. I hope we were able to provide answers for you. I also want to thank Provost Anderson and everyone else who was able to join us today and jump in. Big thanks to our panel for answering all of the questions as well. Just a reminder to you, we really appreciate that 100 plus of you joined us. We got all your questions.
David Slykhuis (58:31):
There are college forums this week, the rest of this week, and you can visit unco.edu/visit to find those. Please don't hesitate to reach out to us at any time. We are more than happy to answer your questions. We know that this fall is going to be different, but we hope to make it as best as we absolutely can, and look forward to welcoming you to campus in one way or another. Thank you very much.