West Virginia University’s spring 2022 semester will begin Jan. 10, with many of the current COVID-19 campus health and safety protocols remaining in place as health officials monitor the emerging omicron variant.
The COVID-19 protocols will be re-evaluated as additional information becomes available relating to the omicron variant, the consideration of the FDA by new therapeutic medicines, as well as levels of infection and hospitalization.
“It is important, even though we may be weary of the pandemic, that we do not let down our guard,” said Dr. Jeffrey Coben, dean of the School of Public Health and associate vice president for Health Affairs. “We have had success to this point in mitigating the impact of the virus on our campuses because our faculty, staff and students have taken this threat seriously, and I urge that we continue to take care of ourselves and each other. Please consider getting fully vaccinated, including a booster dose if applicable.”
Masks will continue to be required for everyone, regardless of vaccination status, in all classrooms, labs or any WVU System facility or building being used as a classroom.
Masks are expected, but not required, for those who are unvaccinated against COVID-19 in all indoor settings as well as outdoors where large groups are gathered. Additionally, masks will be required, regardless of vaccination status, for passengers on the PRT and WVU buses through March 18, under updated federal guidelines from the Transportation Security Administration.
Masks may also be required in clinical and patient care areas of the Health Sciences Campus.
COVID-19 module for new, incoming students
New students starting at WVU this spring are required to take the COVID-19 education module by Jan. 9. Those required to take the module will receive an email soon from email@example.com with more information on how to complete the module.
WVU continues to strongly urge everyone to be fully vaccinated and to get a COVID-19 booster. Employees and students, especially new students starting this spring, are asked to verify their vaccine status at myhousing.wvu.edu.
Those on the Health Sciences Campus involved in patient care, including residents, fellows and students, are required to follow separate WVU Health System or other clinical provider’s policies, including those related to COVID-19, such as masks, PPE and vaccinations.
Some faculty, staff and students working on or in connection with certain federal contracts may be required by executive order to be vaccinated. Questions may be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
WVU Medicine Student Health has the Pfizer vaccine available for WVU students at its clinic in the Health and Education Building. Walk-in appointments are offered during regular business hours (from 8 a.m.-8 p.m. Monday-Friday and 10 a.m.-4 p.m. Saturday).
The Monongalia County Health Department is offering free vaccinations by appointment on most days at its facility at 453 Van Voorhis Road. Call 304-598-5119 to schedule an appointment.
Vaccines will continue to be offered on the Morgantown campus one day a week in partnership with the MCHD. More details will be shared soon.
Other vaccination opportunities can be found at vaccines.gov.
Testing and monitoring
Due to high vaccination verification rates, WVU will not conduct or require campus-wide COVID-19 testing at the start of the semester. Any sample/surveillance testing during the semester will be based on situations as they arise.
Testing will be available in partnership with the MCHD, which will continue to offer community testing opportunities for the WVU community. Go to monchd.org/ for more information.
All WVU community members are required to report if they test positive for COVID-19 or are quarantining due to suspected or known exposure to COVID-19. In Morgantown, students and employees should report their positive results to CareServices@mail.wvu.edu.
Isolation and quarantine procedures
The university continues to implement isolation and quarantine procedures on campus. Students living in the residence halls who have COVID-19 will be isolated in Gaskins House.
WVU’s public dashboard will be updated to report the vaccination verification rate on a biweekly basis.
The spring semester will include a traditional Spring Recess March 12-20.
Details about assigned seating and seating charts for contact tracing purposes will be shared with faculty and instructors soon.
Faculty may obtain additional PPE measures for classrooms through Mountaineer Marketplace.
The university continues to monitor current travel guidelines and global infrastructures and will follow federal and state guidelines. Students and academic advisers with questions related to international study abroad opportunities should contact the Office of Global Affairs.
Housing, on-campus activities and support
Residence halls will reopen at noon Jan. 8. Students may move in or return to their space at their convenience.
WVU will continue Refresh activities and other student and on-campus activities will operate on a normal basis during the semester, including the Rec Center, Adventure WV, Craft Center, club sports, student organizations and WVUp All Night.
The Carruth Center offers a variety of counseling services while providing 24/7 emergency and crisis response to students. Healthy Minds University, operated by WVU Medicine and the WVU Rockefeller Neuroscience Institute, supplements the Center’s services and serves as an additional counseling and psychiatric resource for students.
The West Virginia University Faculty and Staff Assistance Program is a free service offered to employees and their dependents. FSAP is a confidential resource that provides professional staff three sessions of short-term counseling to determine the best resources available to address presenting issues. For an appointment, WVU employees can call 304-293-5590.
Updates can be found on the Return to Campus website. New information will also be shared in upcoming editions of MOUNTAINEER E-News for employees and student Unews.
COVID-19 and related questions can be submitted or sent via email to email@example.com. Visit the Return to Campus website for the latest information.