Ranger Restart and Coronavirus FAQ - Student
What is Surge Testing?
Surge testing efforts will immediately increase testing support for communities throughout Wisconsin now facing dramatic increases of COVID-19 cases and hospitalizations related to the ongoing outbreak.
What will it Entail?
United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is partnering with the UW System and its 13 universities to provide free antigen testing to anyone 5 years and older to the community at-large. There will be 250,000 tests available.
What Kind of Tests?
These are Abbott BinaxNOW antigen tests that provide a result in about 15 minutes. The federal government purchased Abbott BinaxNOW diagnostic tests on August 27 to ensure equitable distribution of the first 150 million units – one day after an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) was issued by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).
The UW System universities will be the first testing sites using the BinaxNOW.
Will there be PCR Tests?
PCR Tests distributed by the federal government and allocated by the state Department of Health Services will be used as a confirmatory test in line with Department of Health Services existing protocol.
Why is the UW system doing this?
UW System and its universities are leveraging an opportunity to enhance testing in their communities in an effort to halt the spread of COVID-19. This is the embodiment of the Wisconsin idea in which our university system uses its capacity, resources, and expertise to solve problems and help people.
why did hhs choose wisconsin?
HHS responds to state and local communities dealing with outbreaks. Surge testing is intended to help local, state, and federal public health experts identify new cases, including asymptomatic or mildly symptomatic. Identifying asymptomatic “silent spreaders” is critical to combatting the outbreak in Wisconsin.
When will campus sites be up and running?
As soon as possible. In some cases, as early as this week, thanks to the cooperative efforts of the federal, state and local governments.
how are they administered?
They are self-administered using a light nasal swab under the supervision of medical professionals.
what is the role of the uw system and universities?
UW System worked with the federal government to secure the tests and offered the assistance of the universities, which are setting up testing sites in an extraordinary effort.
how will people know about the sites?
Universities will be working with local public health to publicize the testing sites.
What empty classrooms are available for individual study or to attend online classes with my own technology?
You can use the following rooms without a reservation:
- Grnq D101
- Grnq D103
- Moln L116
- Moln L149
- Moln L161
- Moln L163
- Moln L212
- Moln L216
- Moln L317
- Moln L322
You can use these rooms with a reservation:
- Grnq D107
- Grnq D109
- Moln L112
- Moln L114
- Moln L140
- Moln L142
- Rita L128
- SCTR L121 Hickory Room
- SCTR L125 Spruce Room
- SCTR L127 Poplar Room
To reserve a room, go to the Logins page and click on EMS Web. Use the same user name and password as you log on to other Parkside accounts. Also, an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and we can make the reservation.
Will the campus be open for Spring?
Yes, the campus will be open in the spring. For health and safety reasons, you will notice that we have made some changes in how we deliver services. Campus offices will be open for limited in-person assistance and virtual services such as online form submissions, web chats, and telehealth/counseling sessions will be offered.
Will I be required to wear a mask?
Yes, you will be required to wear a mask while on campus unless you are in your residence hall room or eating in the Brickstone Grill & Eatery.
How will mask rules be enforced?
We are developing a robust public health campaign to reinforce our messages about masking, physical distancing, hand washing, and other health requirements.
Frequent verbal reinforcement and campus signage will help to remind everyone of these rules.
Intentional and/or repeated violations may be subject to the student misconduct process.
What other safety measures is the campus putting into place?
Classrooms capacities are being reduced and spaces across campus are being re-configured to maintain proper social distancing of at least six feet between individuals. Instructors and staff will be required to wear masks or face coverings that cover both mouth and nose. High touch areas will be regularly disinfected. (e.g., door handles, buttons/switches, handrails, check-out counters, restroom surfaces, etc.).
What does self-monitoring look like?
Everyone is encouraged to self-monitor each day before coming to campus or leaving their residence hall room using the Wisconsin Health Connect screening tool.
It is imperative that during this pandemic, you do not ignore warning signs. If anyone is experiencing symptoms such as shortness of breath, fever, and cough, or other symptoms, even if they are mild, stay at home or remain in your residence hall room. Students are asked to contact the Student Health & Counseling Center by phone at 262-595-2366 for an appointment.
What if my financial situation has changed?
If you or your family’s financial circumstances have changed since filing your 2020-2021 FAFSA, you should contact the Financial Aid Office to discuss amending your FAFSA application.
What should a student do if they develop symptoms? Who do they notify? What if it’s at night or on a weekend, will testing sites still be open?
If a student develops symptoms during business hours, they should contact the Student Health and Counseling Center by phone for screening and instructions, or contact their family healthcare provider. They should try to self-quarantine, practice good hygiene, sanitize high-touch or commonly used surfaces, and continue to monitor their symptoms until they can be evaluated by a provider for specific guidance.
After hours and on weekends students should contact a prompt care clinic or go to a local emergency room. Another option would be to use the Wisconsin Health Connect screening tool which will provide further guidance from a health professional.
Will COVID-19 testing be available on campus?
We are working with UW System and our local health partners to evaluate testing options and establish procedures for testing students through the Student Health & Counseling Center.
What is the process if a student in the residence halls tests positive?
Spaces will be set aside for isolation of residents if a student tests positive for COVID-19.
- During isolation, students must stay in their relocated room until cleared to resume activities by a healthcare provider.
- Students may be encouraged to return home for the isolation period if they are able to do so safely.
UW-Parkside will coordinate contact tracing in conjunction with Kenosha and Racine County Public Health to help identify those individuals who may have come into contact with anyone testing positive on the UW–Parkside campus.
The University is still finalizing plans for providing students with medical care and delivery of food service from the dining hall. We will update you as soon as these processes have been finalized.
What about isolation for students living off-campus?
The campus does not have the ability to provide isolation spaces for students who are not living in University Housing.
We recommend that these students speak with their roommates to develop, and agree on, how they will handle the situation if a roommate develops symptoms and/or has a positive COVID test.
Our off-campus students will have access to the Student Health and Counseling Center, and we will work with them, in cooperation with the local public health department, to conduct contact tracing.
How should a student handle their classes if they become ill?
Students should maintain regular contact with their professors if they are ill and unable to participate in class activities and/or complete assignments. Instructors will work with students to provide alternative ways to complete course work.
Students should complete the Student COVID-19 Reporting Form if they have been exposed to someone with COVID-19, have symptoms, or are diagnosed with COVID-19. The Dean of Students Office will send verification notices to faculty regarding extended absences. Contact tracers will be in touch as appropriate to determine others who may be considered close contacts.
Housing & Residence Life
Will housing be available for Spring semester?
Yes, on campus housing will be available this Spring.
Will some students be required to live on campus?
All freshman and sophomore students are required to live in University-operated housing. (The Board of Regents of the University of Wisconsin System requires that all students with 54 or fewer credits live in University-operated housing during the academic year.)
Exemptions to the live in requirement are available for those students whose Spring term courses have been moved to a mostly online format due to COVID-19.
How will rooms be assigned?
You will be able to choose the living option you would like. Students who want a double room are strongly encouraged to choose their own roommate. Students should complete their personal profile in MyHousing so that potential roommates can reach out and connect to discuss compatibility.
Are the residence hall rooms large enough to provide adequate social distancing?
We have verified that all of the rooms available this year as double rooms are large enough to allow for adequate social distancing. We are converting some of our double rooms to super singles for the upcoming academic year to accommodate additional requests for single rooms.
What safety measures will be put in place for Spring?
Occupancy limits will be enforced in common areas (kitchens, tv lounges, computer labs, weight rooms, laundry rooms) to ensure appropriate social distancing.
Only assigned residents and staff will be allowed in the residence halls and university apartments until further notice. No guests will be allowed in the buildings/apartments.
What will happen if someone is diagnosed with COVID-19?
We have established an isolation area for students who may need to be quarantined as a result of contracting COVID-19.
What dining locations will be available?
The Brickstone Grill & Eatery will be the main dining facility during the Spring semester. Encore hours are Monday through Thursday, 9 am to 1 pm beginning February 1. Wyllie Market, Molinaro Joe’s, and the Den will be closed. Please visit the link below for updates regarding hours, and dining specials.
What will be different?
The number of tables and chairs will be reduced and spaced appropriately. Traffic flow will be controlled with a specific entrance and exit.
The salad bar and self-serve stations will be eliminated; pre-packaged salads and other food items will be available, and meals will be served by dining staff from behind the counters.
Classes and Academics
Will classes be online in the Spring?
We will not be fully online unless required by the health department. To provide the safest learning environment, we are changing some courses typically taught in person to online in the fall.
Are changes being made to the Spring course schedule?
Yes, there are adjustments being made in terms of how courses will be delivered as well as room locations for courses that will be held on campus.
I noticed there are two types of online classes, what is the difference?
For fall, we are offering traditional online courses and scheduled online courses.
Traditional Online Classes (e.g. UWP 101-001 Room: Online) have no scheduled meeting times, but, there will be regular due dates for assignments and scheduled times for quizzes and exams.
Scheduled Online Classes (e.g. UWP-101-002 Room: Online MWF 9:00-9:53) will meet virtually on the scheduled days and times.
Will there be a charge if my course is moved to an online format?
The online course fees will not be charged for any class that was previously scheduled for in-person instruction and moved online for spring due to COVID-19.
What should I do if I don’t want to take an online course?
We recognize that the online format is not the best learning approach for everyone, however, we hope that most students will be able to create a schedule with a mix of online and in-person courses to help address these concerns. Work with your advisor to achieve the schedule that works best for you.
What happens if I want to take all online?
With more online course options, this may be possible. After the schedule is updated, work with your advisor to see whether you can adjust your schedule accordingly.
How might instruction be different in the Spring?
For health and safety reasons, instructors have been asked to think differently about face-to-face instruction this spring. Some face-to-face classes may use a hybrid model which means that they will alternate between in-person and online instruction. The exact approach will vary by individual instructor.
Will there be an option for credit/no credit this Spring?
At this time, we do not plan to offer a credit/no credit option for Spring.
Technology and Other Resources
What technology will I need?
We highly recommend students not rely on their phones for doing homework in online classes. We do not advise anyone to purchase Chromebooks. Though they are cheaper than laptops, they do not work well with our online software. Our Computer Help Desk recommends the following laptop features:
- Intel i5 or i7 processor
- At least 256 Gigabyte Solid State Drive
- At least 8 Gigabyte of memory
You can find links for student deals on laptops and other software at Technology Discounts.
Do I need broadband internet service?
Trying to take an online course may be difficult if you rely on access through your phone. Hotspots did work this past semester for our students, faculty and staff. Consult with your cellular provider on pricing and monthly servicing.
Our Campus Technology Services does have a limited number of hotspots and laptops that can be loaned to students.
What if I can’t afford a computer or broadband internet service?
First, we would recommend that you take advantage of our computer labs and the free internet service available on campus. Second, continuing students who submitted a FAFSA last year may be eligible for emergency funds to cover the costs of technology. It might also be possible to request additional loan amounts to cover the cost of technology. Finally, there will be a limited number of laptops and hotspots for loan through our Campus Technology Services and laptops through the Library.
Will campus computer labs be available to students?
Yes, campus computer labs will be available for students to use. You will be required to maintain appropriate social distancing and wear masks in the labs.
Will the Parkside Academic Resource Center be open?
The Parkside Academic Resource Center will offer both in-person and online tutoring beginning Feb 2. PARC is located on the southeast corner of the library (L2 level) overlooking Main Place. Social distancing and masks will be required in the PARC. Visit the PARC webpage for tutoring hours, subjects, and more.
Will the library be open?
The library is currently under construction and the concourse level is entirely closed. A temporary entrance is located on the D1 level to the right of the glass wall. The library will be open for limited in-person service but the library staff will continue to offer support online. You will see some changes throughout the library to accommodate social distancing requirements and masks will be required.
How do I enter the library?
A temporary entrance is located on the D1 level of Wyllie Hall to the right of the glass wall.
When can I start ordering my books and supplies for the Spring semester?
SOLAR is open until Friday, April 2, for the Spring semester. All students may bill up to $750 to their student account (including shipping fees). To bill to your account, you need your student number which can be found in SOLAR in your DARS.
Am I able to pick up my books in person?
We strongly encourage you to order books and supplies online. The products are the same as in the University Bookstore, and there is a minimal shipping charge of $7.50 per order. If you choose to ship books to the University Bookstore, you will be notified by email when your books are available to pick up. Curbside pickup will be available the weeks of 8/24 and 8/31 from 10am-1pm; select that option when you order.
Some advantages to ordering online, include maintaining your safety and saving you time. Another example is the depth of inventory. An example: used books can be accessed from other Follet stores at no additional cost to you.
May I avoid coming to the bookstore in person and order everything online?
Take advantage of the convenience of the online bookstore, and the depth of items available to you. There is a minimal shipping charge of $7.50 per online bookstore order.
Is there a deadline for ordering my books and supplies?
To set yourself up for academic success order all necessary books and supplies for Spring semester as soon as possible. There is a minimal shipping charge of $7.50 per online order and an express shipping option is available at an additional cost.
I have been accepted as a new student to Parkside. Can I apply for a U.S. visa right now? Are consulates and embassies open for visa applications?
The Department of State has announced a phased resumption of routine visa services. Please visit your local U.S. embassy or consulate website to confirm operating status and find information about appointment rescheduling or emergency services.
If you are unable to obtain a visa in time to begin your studies, please contact the ISS/SA office and we can discuss options with you. You may want to begin coursework online or defer your attendance to a later semester.
IMPORTANT: Please be aware that you are not allowed to enter the U.S. after the program start date listed on your I-20 or DS-2019.
How does switching to online instruction affect my immigration status?
You may have heard that the U.S. government had the intention of activating new regulations requiring some face to face instruction for international students. This effort was cancelled and will not be in effect for Fall.
According to current regulations, online classes are not limited to one per semester. As long as you remain a full-time student, you can maintain your visa status whether you are at the Parkside campus, or studying from home.
Because of the Covid emergency you are allowed to continue your full-time studies from your home country and still be in F-1 visa status. We do not know how long this special provision will be in effect.
Please remember that the ISS/SA Office will do everything we can to ensure that you are able to complete your educational program. Please keep watching this site in case U.S. federal requirements change.
IF I GO HOME, WILL I BE ABLE TO COME BACK TO THE U.S.?
As you all know, COVID-19 processes are changing daily. It is impossible to predict if and when further restrictions will be put in place by the U.S. or by other countries. Please check the U.S. Embassy website in your home country to keep up to date with travel restrictions.
If I travel home, do I need my I-20 signed approving travel?
If you plan to return to Parkside to complete your academic program or OPT you will need to have your I-20 immigration document signed. Please email Karin Basken or Laine Philippa from the ISS/SA Office to obtain a newly-signed document. (Additionally, Dean of Students Steve Wallner is approved to sign.) Please note that due to the pandemic, at the present time I-20 documents can be emailed to students.
IF I VACATE MY CURRENT ON OR OFF CAMPUS RESIDENCE AND RELOCATE TO A NEW UNITED STATES ADDRESS, DO I REPORT IT WITHIN 10 DAYS?
Yes, the Immigration & Nationality Act (INA § 265, 8 U.S.C. 1305) requires all nonimmigrants and permanent residents, including international students, scholars, and their families, to report any change of residential address in the U.S. to the federal government, within 10 days.
I'm really worried and stressed. Where can I find support?
With the ongoing concerns around COVID-19, we understand that there may be concern and anxiety about family around the world. In addition, with the increasing level of news coverage and concerns about the spread of the virus locally, some of you may be experiencing anxiety or stress. Please know that these reactions are normal and there are ways in which you can take care of yourself during these stressful times.
The university has health and counseling resources available to help you cope with these situations. Please visit the Student Health and Counseling website to learn more.
My visa is expiring, and I am unable to travel to my home country currently. What should I do?
You may stay in the U.S. on an expired F-1 or J-1 visa as long as you maintain your immigration status by being in possession of a valid I-20 or DS-2019 and by meeting normal enrollment requirements. (Canadian citizens do not need a visa to enter the U.S.)
My visa is expiring/has expired. If I leave the U.S. now, but must come back after the expiration date of my visa, will I need a new visa, or can I re-enter on an expired visa?
If you leave the U.S. and your visa stamp is expired by the time you wish to re-enter the U.S., then you will need to obtain a new visa at a U.S. Embassy or Consulate before you can re-enter to the U.S. (Canadian citizens do not need a visa to enter the U.S.)
I still need to apply for OPT. Can I do this remotely from elsewhere in the U.S.? Can I do it from outside the U.S.?
You must be physically in the U.S.at the time you submit your Optional Practical Training (OPT) application. ISS/SA will continue to process OPT applications as soon as we receive your submitted request and will communicate with you about how to pick up and mail your application to USCIS. Remember you are not allowed to submit an OPT application more than 90 days before graduation.
I WOULD LIKE TO DISCUSS MY SITUATION WITH AN INTERNATIONAL PROFESSIONAL, HOW CAN I ARRANGE THIS?
Please contact Karin Basken (email@example.com) or Laine Philippa (firstname.lastname@example.org) in the International Student Services Office. We would be pleased to set up a meeting time.