Update Regarding Fall Experience
Dear Horned Frogs, July 20, 2020
I hope this email finds you safe and healthy. I want to provide you more details for the fall as it relates to your housing experience. There is nothing more important to us than your health and safety. Please view our safe campus video here and check out the TCU Connected Campus website, which provides updates to our plans and procedures. We are focused on maintaining our sense of campus community, while also reducing the spread of COVID-19.
Here is additional information about the Fall Residence Hall Experience:
Relationships and Community
At the heart of your residence hall experience is your relationship with your roommate or others in your suite or apartment. These relationships will continue to be the building block for a floor and hall community on campus. Rooms and suites will be occupied as designed.
Programs and Activities
In every hall we will continue to have activities and events that bring students together safely. Face coverings will be required. Group sizes will be limited based on CDC and county health guidelines. Students will have small study groups, ping-pong tournaments, movie nights, football game watch parties, outdoor Zumba, room decoration/craft making stations and parties, and so much more. Our hall staff has a long list of innovative programs that can all be achieved with face coverings, physical distancing and cleaned and sanitized equipment and supplies. We will have “virtual” programs, too, but we know we can bring students together safely and allow them to have a fun campus living experience. Check out more information about our programming here.
Academic Support and Learning
One of the best parts of living on campus is the built-in support students receive. Whether it is an organized study group in the hall, or just two friends who meet to study together in a residence hall room, there is no question that living on campus helps students succeed in classes. We are creating individual study spaces in our common areas for students to utilize. Our staff also sponsors course review sessions, study skills programs and time management activities. We also will have several resources, such as Writing Center staff, available in the halls at various times to assist students. We will continue to hold these learning sessions this year via in-person, small groups, with appropriate physical distancing and face coverings.
Housekeepers will be on campus daily from 7 a.m. to 8 p.m. to perform additional common area cleaning, including our electro-static sanitizing. Students will be responsible for their rooms, but we will have more cleaning than ever before in every other part of our halls. Check out more information about keeping our communities clean here.
Guests and Visitors
We want our residents to be able to have another TCU student visit them to study or watch a show on Netflix, but we will limit visitors in rooms. A student in a double room can have no more than four people in their room or students in a three-person suite could have no more than six in their suite, etc. We want Horned Frogs to be able to visit each other, but non-TCU students and overnight guests will not be allowed. As students demonstrate they can follow guidelines, and as we see that COVID-19 spread can be mitigated, we may loosen these restrictions; but we must start the year with these restrictions in place to ensure a healthy campus.
Student Health and COVID-19 Testing
If a student doesn’t feel well it is imperative that they do not go to class and interact with others. If they have symptoms of COVID-19, the student should call the TCU Health Center to be tested immediately. If the test returns positive, we will require that student to isolate for the recommended time period (currently 14 days). If a student has their own room they will isolate where they are, so long as they have access to a bathroom just for their use (apartments and four-person suites with two bathrooms). Students who live in a double room will be moved to an isolation room on campus and students who were exposed will be asked to quarantine. Quarantining means monitoring your health, staying in your room as much as possible and limiting any interaction with others. Our process is consistent with CDC and Tarrant County Public Health guidelines. Our students in quarantine or isolation will have additional support from TCU Care Coordinators in order to receive meals, assistance with laundry or other needs.
Community and Physical Distancing
Students will be required to wear a face covering when they leave their room. We will encourage students to hang out in small groups around the residence hall, but everyone must maintain physical distancing and wear face coverings. Our desk staff will be available and will wipe down elevator buttons and entrance doors throughout the day at shift changes. Resident Assistants will be on duty daily and the Hall Director will regularly interact with students. All staff will wear face coverings and gladly meet with students in person, by Zoom or by phone, whichever method the student prefers. We will continue to get to know residents, help them build a hall community and we will be there to provide all the services that make residential living a positive experience.
Fall Dining Experience
- The student dining experience will continue to offer a wide variety of food options with a creative menu and flexible meal plans.
- All locations, except for the Bass Building cart, will be open this fall and all locations will provide a nearly 100% “touchless” experience. This means all food will be prepared and handed to students; there will be no self-serve options.
- Students will be able to use their meal “swipes” at ALL dining locations to provide for maximum convenience and to minimize wait times. Market Square seating is currently set at 50 percent capacity, which adheres to state and county public health guidelines. There are plans for 25 percent, 75 percent and full capacity and we have the ability to adjust daily, if needed.
- There are a variety of outdoor dining spaces for students to sit down and enjoy their meal.
- All dining staff will use PPE and be trained on safe operations within current food service guidelines.
- All dining facilities will be cleaned and disinfected throughout the day.
- Hours of operation will not change; we will be open for students when they need dining.
We expect further changes related to the pandemic, and are fully prepared to pivot and continue making decisions with the health of our community in mind. It will be critical to our residence hall communities that each resident is personally responsible for their health and wellbeing. For more information on our plans for the residential living experience this fall, please visit our website and check the FAQ section. If you still have questions or concerns, please contact our office by calling 817-257-7865 or email email@example.com.
We thank you for your trust in us, and we look forward to a great fall semester.
Student Affairs is suggesting resources to help students in the transition to a virtual experience including updates from Academic Advising, Information Technology, Career Center, Counseling Center, Campus-Life Dean’s Office, and many more departments that are here to support, encourage academic success, reduce social isolation and create connections.