Campus COVID-19 Information

Kentucky Wesleyan College continues to closely monitor the spread of the novel coronavirus, COVID-19. This site is a resource for information about COVID-19 and communications to the Kentucky Wesleyan College community. The site will be regularly updated with new information and messages.  Information on the impact of the virus on our neighbors throughout the Commonwealth of Kentucky is available.

All campus community members should:

  • Monitor for symptoms commonly associated with COVID-19
  • Wash/sanitize hands and surfaces periodically throughout the day
  • Wear a mask when in crowds or in close proximity to others whose vaccination status is in question
  • Get vaccinated when eligible!  Find a location nearest you.

The College is taking appropriate measures to ensure the safety of all campus community members. All campus offices and services are open and serving students.


Latest News and Updates

  • Update from President Mitzel – January 14

    • Dear Kentucky Wesleyan family, 

      I cannot overstate how elated I am to have everyone back on campus after the semester break. Although we all get tired toward the end of a semester and the rest does us all good, I realize how much I miss having the students, faculty, and staff on the campus. It is your energy and enthusiasm that make Kentucky Wesleyan such a vibrant community and I am grateful for each of you. 

      We return to our Panther home at a time when the COVID pandemic continues to circulate. The Omicron variant spreads more quickly than any of the previous iterations, and it is thought to be passed from person to person as easily as the measles. In order to ensure that we have a successful and fruitful semester, that we are able to continue hosting our classes, activities, and that we keep our KWC home healthy, we must all adhere to the Wesleyan Way of watching out for each other while helping to ensure the safety of those around you. 

      To keep our community safe, we encourage masks to be worn indoors to help curtail the spread of COVID. We will not be able to stop the spread, but we can slow it enough to keep our campus healthy and working. Everyone on campus, those whose vaccinations are up to date and those whose are not, should always carry a mask, and we encourage you to wear a mask in crowded spaces. As before, faculty and staff retain the right to have visitors and/or students in their classrooms/spaces wear a mask. The message circulated last weekend recommended the different types of masks that are effective in slowing the Omicron virus. 

      If you are feeling ill, even if the symptoms are moderate, get tested! Omicron effects individuals in a different manner. For some of you, the virus may give symptoms similar to allergies or a cold. For others, the symptoms may be much more severe. To help slow the spread of COVID, you must help ensure that you are not intermixing with others when you are infected with the COVID virus.  

      The responsibility for our safety during this time resides with each of us. The Wesleyan Way helps guide how we comport ourselves each day. We will get through this pandemic, and we will get through it in a much healthier fashion if we strive to abide for the well-being of ourselves and those around us each day! 

      Thank you and welcome back Panther Family. Let us have a healthy and productive spring 2022 semester. 

      Sincerely,

    • Tom Mitzel, Ph.D.
      President

  • Campus Update and Mask Recommendations – January 9

    • Kentucky Wesleyan College encourages all members of our campus community to wear a mask when indoors this semester to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 on campus.  Everyone on campus, including those who are vaccinated, should carry a mask with them at all times and are encouraged to wear a mask any time they feel ill, are in crowded spaces, if they feel the need for extra protection, etc. Faculty and staff have the right to ask students to wear masks in their classrooms and office spaces . See the CDC mask guidelines for more information.

      At the minimum for everyday wear — when you have no symptoms of an upper respiratory tract infection (runny nose, cough, stuffy nose, sneezing, with or without fever) — consider wearing a mask that:

      • Completely covers your nose and mouth
      • Has two or more layers of washable, breathable fabric
      • Fits snugly against the sides of your face and doesn’t have gaps.

      If you have any signs or symptoms of possible respiratory infection (whether or not you think it might be COVID-19) you need a more-than-minimal mask. For greater protection in those situations, please wear:

      • A KN95 or N95 mask.
      • A disposable “surgical” or “medical” mask (with the nose clip pinched and sealed over the nose)
      • A disposable mask underneath a cloth mask with multiple layers of fabric
      • A three-layer or greater cloth mask with a filter

      Gaiters, bandanas/hoodies over the face or masks with valves (including N95), and face shields are never an appropriate or adequate covering, regardless of symptoms.

  • Update from Dean McQueen-Ruark – December 18th

    • Good afternoon students.

      We are so glad that you were able to complete the Fall 2021 semester and can’t wait to have you back in January.  We hope that your break is restful.  While I know that we are all getting tired of hearing about COVID, the Omicron variant has made its way to Kentucky.  Just yesterday, the Green River District Health Department confirmed 215 news cases of COVID-19 in Daviess County between Tuesday and Thursday of this week.  In order to make a safe return to campus in January and to do all that we can to keep our semester normal, the following protocol is necessary before you return for the Spring semester:

      ♦ In order to protect our campus, all Kentucky Wesleyan College students who are not fully vaccinated are required to submit a negative COVID-19 test result before you return to campus for the Spring semester.  To be considered fully vaccinated you must have received your last shot after July 10, 2021 (within six months of the first day of Spring classes).  The test must have occurred no more than 5 days prior and no less than 3 days prior to your arrival to campus. This timeframe is to allow for test results to be returned while also limiting the chance for infection between the test and arrival.  Please begin researching where and how you will get this test.  This test will be at your own cost. You must submit your test results here before returning to the residence halls and/or attending class: https://kwc.edu/covid-19-negative-test-submission/

      ♦ If you have received your last vaccination shot (either of the initial vaccine or your booster) and haven’t submitted proof, please do so here:  https://kwc.edu/vaccine-submission/

      We can’t wait to see you back on campus in January.

      If you have any questions, please feel free to reach out.

      Thank you!

      Rebecca McQueen-Ruark, M.A.
      Vice President of Student Affairs & Dean of Students

 

Kentucky Wesleyan College is committed to being 100% in-person. A highly vaccinated campus community minimizes potential disruption due to COVID-19.

Take your shot—get your vaccine today!

       

 


FAQs – Spring 2022 Policies

 

  • Are students required to be vaccinated to attend Kentucky Wesleyan College?

    • No. Students are not required to be vaccinated to attend Kentucky Wesleyan College for Spring 2022. However, we encourage all campus community members to be fully vaccinated with a booster to minimize the potential for disruption to classes and activities due to COVID-19. 
    • For the Spring 2022 semester, gateway testing will be in place for all faculty, staff and students.  Students who were fully vaccinated after July 10, 2021 (two doses of Pfizer or Moderna, one shot of Johnson and Johnson) or those who have received their booster, must ensure the college has the latest vaccination information.
    • Those who were fully vaccinated prior to July 10, 2021 and have not received their booster, must submit a negative test prior to arrival to campus.

      Unvaccinated students will have additional expectations and responsibilities to the broader campus community, including but not limited to initial COVID-19 testing to begin the semester and periodic testing thereafter at the students expense.

  • What about masks on campus?

    • Because of the rate of fully vaccinated campus community members, universal masking is not required.  However, all members of the campus community should keep a mask available at all times, and respect the requests of campus leaders and others in masking decisions in classrooms, meeting spaces, team events, etc.
  • I am not going to be vaccinated.  How will that impact my experience at Kentucky Wesleyan College?

    • First, it is our sincere hope that everyone eligible to be vaccinated will be vaccinated.  Research has proven the available vaccines in the United States are overwhelmingly safe and provide protection against serious disease connected to COVID-19. 
    • Community members who choose to remain unvaccinated will be expected to mask while in campus facilities, traveling on behalf of the College, and observe physical distancing while on campus after any campus-wide policies related to masking are lifted. This is a protective measure for all unvaccinated individuals.
    • To ensure the limit of community spread and potential impact on academic schedules and athletic seasons, students not submitting complete vaccine cards will be required to participate in on-campus, random surveillance testing for COVID-19.  Students who choose not to participate will be asked to leave campus.
    • The College will not provide quarantine space for unvaccinated students who are symptomatic, test positive for COVID-19, or are a close contact to a positive student. Students will be required to quarantine or isolate at home, returning to the pre-pandemic practice of students with an illness.
    • All students are afforded certain academic accommodations for health in normal circumstances.  However, extraordinary accommodations permitted in 2020-2021 made possible by permission of the federal government and regional accrediting bodies are no longer available (i.e. hybrid classes, academic programs entirely online/hybrid, etc.). Unvaccinated students will be responsible for making up missed classwork during the time they miss class and will be responsible for the covered material.


FAQs – COVID-19 Testing for Unvaccinated Students

  • Who will be tested?

    • Our goal is to test 10% of unvaccinated students in the Kentucky Wesleyan community who attend in-person classes each week. This includes residential students and students who commute to campus for class or work.
  • When and where will testing take place?

    • Testing will take place on the front porch in the Woodward Health and Recreation Center (HRC) along the Avenue of Champions on Mondays from 9am-10am. If you are selected for survey testing, you will be sent a specific time slot for your testing. Please note that the number of slots available is limited to prevent overcrowding. You will be permitted to leave class for the test but must return as soon as the test is administered (usually takes no more than 10 minutes).
  • How will I know if I’ve been selected for survey testing?

    • If you are selected for survey testing, you will be notified the Friday prior to your testing date via email from Dean McQueen-Ruark (rmcqueen@kwc.edu) and a text message.

  • Is testing mandatory?

    • Frequent testing works to slow the spread of COVID-19. We want you to have the full Wesleyan experience this semester and keeping our community healthy and safe is a fundamental part of that. The better pulse we have on the communication of the virus on campus, the better able we are to protect those who are most vulnerable. Students who do not participate in the surveillance testing will be charged through the student conduct system for behavior that endangers the health and safety of self/others.

  • I’m a student-athlete on our campus, will I be required to get tested in order to compete each week?

    • The Great Midwest Athletic Conference requires all symptomatic individuals to test at onset of symptoms prior to travel or competition regardless of vaccination status. The NCAA currently recommends that all non-vaccinated participants be tested regularly prior to athletic contests. In order to meet competition requirements, unvaccinated participants may be subject to additional testing to travel and participate. The participants will be tested in the same manner as above with the bill also being applied to the student’s account.

  • Who pays for the test?

    • A charge of $40 will be added to your student account for the cost of the test and lab processing.

  • What does the test entail?

    • Your will be taking a saliva PCR test.  You will spit several times into a funnel attached to a tube, and then screw on a cap to complete the test.

  • How will I know my test results?

    • The tests will be sent directly to an outside lab and you will be notified of your results via an app in 12-24 hours.

  • What should I do if I test positive for COVID-19?

    • Rest assured that if you test positive for COVID-19, the Kentucky Wesleyan community is ready to support you. A positive test result means you should limit your interaction with others as best you are able. You will be asked to isolate at home for at least 10 days and until symptoms improve.

    • Faculty will be notified of any students in their classes who have tested positive to ensure no student is penalized for attendance or late assignments as a result of quarantine.

    • If you receive a positive test result, a member of Kentucky Wesleyan’s COVID Response team will reach out to you to collect information for contact tracing.

  • What is contact tracing?

    • Contact tracing is the practice of identifying and monitoring individuals who may have had contact with a sick person as a means of controlling the spread of illness. A contact tracer works with someone with a positive test result to identify people whom the patients have been in close contact with so they can self-isolate. A close contact is someone who has been within six feet for fifteen minutes or more with someone who has tested positive or is presumed to be positive.


FAQs – Vaccines

  • Are the vaccines safe?

    • The first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine was administered in December 2020.  Since then, more than 3.2 billion doses of vaccines have been administered worldwide, with over 300,000,000 in the United States alone.  The FDA, the federal authority that evaluates the safety of pharmaceutical products among other things, authorized use of the Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson and Johnson vaccines in early 2021 in the United States.  The CDC continues to monitor feedback from millions of vaccinated Americans over 8 months to determine the efficacy and safety of the vaccines, and has recommended their broad use.
    • To learn more about the safety precautions and studies underway to ensure public health and safety, visit the CDC website.
  • How much does the vaccine cost?

    • The federal government is covering the costs of the vaccine.  Providers may ask for a copy of your insurance card in order to bill your insurance for administration of the vaccine, but it is provided to the American public at no direct cost.  If you do not have insurance, please contact your local Health Department to identify a location that will best serve you.

  • Where can I find a vaccine location?

    • There are thousands of locations nationwide administering the vaccine.  Check out this resource to find one near you.

Student Emergency Requests

 

  • Does the College have funds available to help students facing COVID-related hardships?

    • Yes!  As part of the federal programs established to support Colleges and college-aged students through the pandemic, the College has received dollars specifically reserved to support students.  The vast majority of these payments have been distributed in lump sum payments to students.  The excess funds are reserved for emergency requests for students who have been impacted excessively due to the pandemic.
    • If you have a need that may qualify for these funds, please review the application form, linked here, and submit your request if you qualify.  We do have limited funds available for these grants, so they will be awarded on a first come, first served for those who qualify basis.
  • Are there other Financial Aid mechanisms available to help?

    • If you or your family’s financial situation has changed significantly from what is reflected on your federal income tax return (for example, if you’ve lost a job or otherwise experienced a drop in income), you may be eligible to have your financial aid adjusted.

      Complete the FAFSA questions as instructed on the application (including the transfer of tax return and income information), submit your FAFSA form, then contact the Financial Aid Office to discuss how your current financial situation has changed.  You can begin the process via email at finaid@kwc.edu.