COVID-19 Information

2019 Novel Coronavirus and Campus Safety

Spring 2020 response

As updates continue to emerge regarding COVID-19, we are monitoring the situation and meeting regularly to review local, state, and national health agency reports and assess preparedness plans. Out of an abundance of caution, we have modified the University’s operations in order to fulfill our educational mission as a student-focused residential campus, keep our campus community safe and healthy, and reduce the spread of COVID-19 to more vulnerable populations.

A preparedness plan is in place, and Valparaiso University will continue to work closely with the Porter County Health Department and Indiana State Department of Health to adjust and refine University-wide plans as the situation evolves and align resources accordingly.

We are taking all reasonable precautions, which includes close monitoring of the evolving information coming from local, state, and federal agencies.

Campus Operations

All classes will be delivered remotely beginning March 16 and extending through the end of the semester, including the final exam period.

The Governor of Indiana has extended the “stay at home” order until Friday, May 1, 2020. As before, we are requesting students and their families not return to campus to move out of their residence hall room during this continued period of required social distancing.

Once the “stay at home” order has expired, we will begin a regulated move-out process. This process replaces the May 13 deadline/process to move-out of the residence halls. This approach will assist with social distancing recommendations via the CDC as it will limit the number of people on-campus at any given point in time and also limit the size of groups within the buildings. This process will also assist with traffic flow around the campus and residence halls.

  • Effective immediately, patrons of Valpo Dining Services may acquire to-go meals in the Founders servery to be consumed in areas other than the Founders Dining Room, Hearth Room, or the Café dining area.
  • Effective March 22, 10 p.m., the Campus Café will be closed until further notice as a result of the restrictions on gatherings and dine-in patrons.
  • The Counseling Center has provided techniques and resources for coping with uncertainty, change, and fear.
IT HelpDesk
  • Remote services available
Christopher Center 
  • Remote services available
Chapel
  • Closed
Center for the Arts
  • Closed
Brauer Museum of Art
  • Closed
Fitness Center
  • Closed
ARC Informal Recreation
  • Closed
Pool Open Lap Swim
  • Closed
Grinders
  • Closed
Campus Shuttle 
  • Closed

 

Harre Union Hours and Operations:


The Harre Union will be open for limited hours on a daily basis primarily for students to pick up meals, and to pick up mail from the mail window only during the listed hours. The Union and Dining operations will only be open and accessible through one set of doors. The rest of the Union building and operations will remain closed.

 

Beginning Monday, March 30, 2020 – Until Further Notice
Union Open at North Entrance Only (North Entrance is Nearest Parking Lot 13)
  • Monday through Friday – 11am – 1:30pm and 4pm – 6pm
  • Saturday and Sunday – 11am – 1:30pm and 4pm – 6pm
  • All Other Hours – Closed Until Further Notice
Cafe Dining Hours – Pick Up and Carryout Only
  • Lunch – 11am – 1:30pm
  • Dinner – 4pm – 6pm
Founders Dining Hall – Closed Until Further Notice
Gameroom – Closed Until Further Notice
Student Organization Suite and Commuter Lounge – Closed Until Further Notice
Computer Lab – Closed Until Further Notice
Mailroom
  • Monday – Friday – 11am – 1:30pm and 4pm – 6pm
  • Pick-Up Window Only
Bookstore – Closed Until Further Notice – Online Only

The Student Accounts team is in the midst of calculating partial room, board, and parking permit credits (or refunds as described in the link below) for residential students as a result of Governor Holcomb’s Stay-at-Home Order.

CARES ACT Student Funds

Valparaiso University was recently awarded Federal CARES Act stimulus funds that will be awarded directly to students. Below are some common questions regarding the fund and how it will be distributed.

Questions can be sent to: CARESfund@valpo.edu

CARES Act Emergency Relief Report: View the Report »

Who will receive the funds? 

The University will award the grant funds per the Department of Education guidelines to Title IV eligible students enrolled on March 16, 2020.  There will not be an application for these funds rather these grants will be awarded as direct payments to students.

What is the money intended to be used for? 

The grants are intended to be used by students to help defray costs incurred due to COVID-19 related impacts and can cover a variety of expenses including course materials, technology needs, food, housing, healthcare and childcare.

When can I expect to receive the funds? 

Students can expect to receive funds in the next week or two.  Students with direct deposit information on file with the University may receive their money a bit sooner than a paper check however all will be processed as quickly as possible.

How was the amount of the award determined? 

The grant amounts were determined based on three primary factors including financial need as shown on the FAFSA (Expected Family Contribution), full or part-time status and undergraduate/graduate status.

What is the range of award amounts? 

The grant awards will range from $250 to $900 per student based on the criteria listed above. (Financial need as shown on the FAFSA, full or part-time status and undergraduate/graduate status.)  See the chart outlining the allocations.

Full Time Undergraduate Expected Family Contribution = $0 $900.00
Full Time Undergraduate Expected Family Contribution $1 – $8,000 $750.00
Full Time Undergraduate Expected Family Contribution $8,001 – $20,000 $500.00
Full Time Undergraduate Expected Family Contribution >$20,000 $300.00
Full Time Undergraduate Non-FAFSA filer $200.00
Graduate / Law / Part Time Undergraduate $300.00
How will the money be sent to me? 

If the student has bank information in the University payment portal system we will attempt to utilize that first otherwise a paper check will be issued to the permanent address on file.


Room, Board, and Parking Credits

Valparaiso University will be applying partial room, board and parking permit credits to student accounts as a result of Governor Holcomb’s Stay-at-Home Order.

Questions can be sent to: student.accounts@valpo.edu

Who will receive the credits?

Residential students will receive partial credits for room, board and parking permits. Partial credits will also be applied for commuter students who purchased meals plans and parking permits.

How are the credits calculated?

Credits were calculated using a factor of 35% applied against Spring 2020 charges for room, board and parking less any institutional financial aid which may have covered all or a portion of these charges.

When will credits be available?

Credits will be applied to accounts in the next 30-45 days (from date of letter April 29) and students will be advised when credits are posted to their accounts

What if I am a Senior or not returning to Valpo?

If your account is paid in full and you are a graduating Senior or non-returning student, you will be able to request a refund from your account. 

Refund request form: https://www.valpo.edu/student-financial-services/billing/refunds-withdraws/

Student Account Center: DataVu at datavu1.valpo.edu  Login using your ValpoNet credentials

What if my account is paid in full and I have a credit balance?

For returning students, whose account is paid in full and have a credit balance following the application of the credit, you can request a refund. However students may choose to leave the credit on the account to be applied to upcoming Summer and/or Fall charges. Students/parents will be allowed to adjust their payment plans in the event the credit is applied after you have already set up a plan.

What if I want my credit to apply toward Summer or Fall tuition?

We encourage returning students to leave the credit on the student account and the amount will automatically reduce your balance due when additional charges are posted for following terms.

All students studying abroad were recalled on March 10. Valparaiso University is working closely with our Study Abroad partners to facilitate distance learning so those students may complete their courses.


University Events and Activities

In response to guidance from the CDC and the Governor of Indiana addressing face-to-face events and meetings, all Valparaiso University face-to-face gatherings, social events, and meetings with more than 10 individuals have been cancelled. This determination is not meant to interrupt daily operations or limit building capacities; rather, it applies solely to face-to-face social events, gatherings and meetings, whether they involve our employees on campus, or have been scheduled by external groups. We strongly encourage our campus colleagues to move to virtual meetings, teleconferences, or other remote options, even for gatherings with fewer than 10 participants, during this time.

Valparaiso University fully supports decisions made by the Missouri Valley Conference, the Summit League and the NCAA in cancelling all remaining MVC and Summit League winter and spring contests and NCAA championship events.

All of the Chapel’s worship services have moved online. Sunday morning worship services, Sunday evening Candlelight service, Wednesday evening Celebrate! services, and Morning Prayer will not be held at the Chapel of the Resurrection until further notice.

You can join us remotely using the following links:

*Effective Sunday, April 15, the Sunday Morning Worship will be moving to Webex: 
https://valpo.webex.com/valpo/j.php?MTID=m06adc9ae20844929fd11efb3667aba2c
Meeting number (access code): 613 990 457
Meeting password: chapel

While we all would prefer a May Commencement, our commitment to hosting a safe and healthy ceremony is more important. At this time, we have decided to postpone Commencement until this commitment can be honored.


Employees

University employees are essential to campus operations and, more importantly, valued members of our community. If you believe you or an immediate family member may be ill, please stay home. The University’s Executive Management Council has issued a COVID-19 Emergency Response Protocol to assist employees who express needs due to COVID-19.

  • If you believe you may be ill, please contact your health care provider and take sick days as needed.
  • Employees who need to be at home as a result of any COVID-19 related circumstance, including illness, may be given up to 15 paid supplemental leave days. These days will be taken after any available sick time. Please speak with your supervisor to request such arrangements.

Travel Information

All University-sponsored international travel and non-essential University-sponsored domestic air travel has been suspended indefinitely. 

For those of you who have been traveling internationally or had significant domestic travel (beyond home and back) independently (not on University-sponsored trips), we ask for your help as part of our Coronavirus (COVID-19) preparedness plan. Please take a moment and enter your information on the form below. 

  • All University-sponsored international travel has been suspended indefinitely.
  • All non-essential University-sponsored domestic air travel has been suspended indefinitely. Essential travel constitutes trips that are absolutely necessary, must be completed face-to-face, and cannot be rescheduled. Contact your division vice president or academic dean if you wish to seek an exemption for University-sponsored domestic air travel.

We advise you to consult health resources prior to making future arrangements for air travel or attending conferences or large gatherings.

  • Please complete the Traveler Information Form if you traveled internationally or had significant domestic travel (beyond home and back) during Spring Break.
  • Anyone who returned to the U.S. from a country which at the time of your return was designated as CDC Level 2 or CDC Level 3 advisory, and whose return was on or before March 11, must self-isolate off campus for 14 days from their date of return to the U.S. and be cleared by an appropriate medical professional before returning to campus. Affected countries include China, Iran, South Korea, and Italy.
  • Additionally, anyone who returns to the U.S. from any international location on or after March 12 must self-isolate off campus for 14 days from their date of return to the U.S. and be cleared by an appropriate medical professional before returning to campus.
  • If the medical clearance is completed off campus, please submit the clearance documentation to the Valparaiso University Health Center. This can be provided in person or emailed to health.center@valpo.edu (please use your Valparaiso University email for privacy) or faxed to 219.464.5410.
  • Anyone who returned to the U.S. from a country which at the time of your return was designated as CDC Level 2 or CDC Level 3 advisory, and whose return was on or before March 11, must self-isolate off campus for 14 days from their date of return to the U.S. and be cleared by an appropriate medical professional before returning to campus. Affected countries include China, Iran, South Korea, and Italy.
  • Additionally, anyone who returns to the U.S. from any international location on or after March 12 must self-isolate off campus for 14 days from their date of return to the U.S. and be cleared by an appropriate medical professional before returning to campus.
  • If the medical clearance is completed off campus, please submit the clearance documentation to the Valparaiso University Health Center. This can be provided in person or emailed to health.center@valpo.edu (please use your Valparaiso University email for privacy) or faxed to 219.464.5410.
  • Those in self-isolation should also be self-monitoring. Self-monitoring means taking their temperatures twice a day and remaining alert to coughing or difficulty breathing. Anyone on self-monitoring should be provided a plan for whom to contact if they develop fever, cough, or difficulty breathing during the self-monitoring period to determine whether medical evaluation is needed (CDC).
    • Self-monitoring kits are available from the Valparaiso University Health Center at no charge.

When to Seek Medical Help/Health and Wellness

If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19 and develop a fever and symptoms, such as cough or difficulty breathing, call before coming directly into the health center so we can triage your symptoms over the phone and not put any staff or other patients at unnecessary risk. At this time, the health center is not testing for COVID-19. Call the health center at 219.464.5060 (8 a.m. – 5 p.m.) or 219.464.5352 (after 5 p.m.) or your primary healthcare provider for medical advice. Self-monitoring kits are available from the Valparaiso University Health Center at no charge.

We are closely monitoring the outbreak and have formed a task force that coordinates continual updates and campus communications, and subsequent emails will follow to keep all students, faculty, and staff informed as the situation evolves.

The 2019 novel coronavirus, also known as COVID-19, is a member of a large family of viruses that causes a variety of illnesses in humans and animals. Some strands of coronavirus can cause the common cold while others cause more serious respiratory illnesses. Previous coronavirus outbreaks have included severe acute respiratory syndrome (SARS) and Middle East respiratory syndrome (MERS).

  • A person infected with COVID-19 may have a fever above 100.4° F, cough, and difficulty breathing. These symptoms also overlap with common illnesses including influenza.
  • Symptoms can take between 2–14 days to appear after being infected.
  • Please call your primary health care provider or your Valparaiso University Health Center if, in the past 14 days, you:
    • Have traveled to an affected area and have a fever and signs or symptoms of a lower respiratory illness (cough, shortness of breath), or
    • Were in close contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19 and have a fever or signs of a lower respiratory illness (cough, shortness of breath)
  • Your health care provider will work with the CDC and Indiana State Department of Health to determine if you should be tested for COVID-19.
  • Most cases of COVID-19 are mild and most people have recovered without issue. Valparaiso University will continue to monitor the situation closely and plan and prepare for various scenarios.
  • Anyone with symptoms of acute respiratory illness should stay home and not go to community spaces until they are free of fever (100.4° F or greater using an oral thermometer), signs of a fever and any other symptoms for at least 24 hours, without the use of fever-reducing medication (acetaminophen-Tylenol or ibuprofen-Motrin).
  • The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has full details on its website, including the importance of avoiding public transportation if you are feeling ill and staying away from others, even within your own household.
  • If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19 and develop a fever and symptoms, such as cough or difficulty breathing, call before coming directly into the health center so we can triage your symptoms over the phone and not put any staff or other patients at unnecessary risk. At this time, the health center is not testing for COVID-19. Call the health center at 219.464.5060 (8 a.m. – 5 p.m.) or 219.464.5352 (after 5 p.m.) or your primary healthcare provider for medical advice.
  • Your health care provider will work with the CDC and Indiana State Department of Health to determine if you should be tested for COVID-19.
  • There are several ways to reduce the likelihood of contracting or spreading the virus:
    • Avoid touching your face, eyes, nose, or mouth
    • Avoid close contact with people who are sick
    • Avoid close contact with others
    • Do not share food and drinks
    • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, then throw the tissue in the trash and wash your hands
    • Clean and disinfect all high touch surfaces include tablets, computers, cell phones, OneCard, keys, and bedside tables
    • Stay home if you are ill, especially if you have a fever, a cough, or difficulty breathing
    • Clean your hands often by washing them with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains 60%–90% alcohol. Soap and water should be used if hands are visibly dirty.
    • It is especially important to clean hands after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after coughing, sneezing, or blowing your nose.
    • Do not share drinks, food, or utensils.
    • Get good sleep and drink plenty of water.
    • Practice social distancing
      • Remain out of congregate settings.
      • Avoid mass gatherings.
      • Maintain distance (approximately 6 feet) from others when possible.
  • If you are sick or suspect you are infected with the virus that causes COVID-19, follow the steps below to help prevent the disease from spreading to people in your community.
    • Stay home
    • Avoid public areas
    • Avoid public transportation
    • Call ahead before visiting your doctor
    • Wear a facemask if you are sick
    • Cover your coughs and sneezes
    • Clean your hands often
    • Avoid sharing personal household items
    • Clean all “high-touch” surfaces everyday
    • Monitor your symptoms
    • For more details on these, visit our Valpo Health Center Update page
  • Call 911 if you have a medical emergency: If you have a medical emergency and need to call 911, notify the dispatch personnel that you have, or are being evaluated for COVID-19. If possible, put on a facemask before emergency medical services arrive.

The CDC recommended practicing social distancing to prevent the spread of disease including COVID-19.

  • Remain out of congregate settings.
  • Avoid mass gatherings.
  • Maintain distance (approximately 6 feet) from others when possible.

The Valparaiso University Counseling Center recognizes that during this time of change many may feel uncertainty and fear along with a host of other emotions. There may be concerns that affect your decisions about how to best manage your health and the health of those around you. In an effort to support you we have drafted a list of coping techniques and support resources to manage stress and anxiety.


Resources

Please stay abreast of this dynamic situation using these resources:


Contact

Please contact covid19info@valpo.edu for any additional questions or accommodations relating to campus operations in light of COVID-19.

We will continue to closely monitor the situation and provide further updates to the community as necessary.

The safety and well-being of all members of the Valparaiso University community is our primary concern. Even as we focus on disease prevention, we remember that caring for our community is equally important. Valparaiso University is a global community, and you are encouraged to focus on the facts and come together as a diverse and inclusive community, supporting both one another and people affected by the outbreak. Let us do our utmost to uphold our values of mutual respect and support as a community and not allow fear to divide us in these times.

Student Health Center

Valparaiso University Student Health Center

For emergencies, please call 911

Email: health.center@valpo.edu

Phone: 219.464.5060

Hours of operation: By appointment only