Campus Health and Safety

  • Learn more about IUP’s current COVID-19 mitigation guidelines, announced July 22.

    COVID-19 Vaccination Information

    IUP, along with all universities in the State System of Higher Education, does not require COVID-19 vaccinations for students or for employees.

    We continue to share on our website Pennsylvania Governor Tom Wolf’s recommendation that all college and university students receive a vaccine.

    Our announced plans for the fall semester are for classes and events to be held in person; we will continue to monitor the situation and follow the advice and recommendations of the Pennsylvania Department of Health related to mitigation techniques that are needed to keep our IUP community safe and well.

    We will announce any new information on our website and via email to students and employees.

    Members of the IUP community are encouraged to consult with their physician on personal health issues, including vaccinations.

    Recent Pennsylvania Department of Health guidelines for COVID-19 vaccinations. Information especially relevant to IUP employees and students includes:

    Any member of the IUP community who is interested and in need of a vaccination is encouraged to work with their physician to access existing resources available within their respective community.

    Locally, Indiana Regional Medical Center offers COVID-19 vaccine appointments to eligible individuals in the community. Visit the IRMC Vaccine website to learn more and schedule your appointment. 

    In addition, Walmart is offering free vaccines for eligible members of the community in both Blairsville and Indiana. Visit the Walmart website to schedule your appointment.

    The IUP Health Service will provide free COVID-19 vaccines for students during the fall semester.

    Campus Safety Precautions

    All of us are responsible for protecting the health and safety of the IUP community during this pandemic. On this page, you will find the safety precautions taken on IUP's campus in light of COVID-19.

    Hand-sanitizer stations and temperature check kiosks are located in all buildings and in public areas. Front-line custodial and maintenance staffs are trained to follow established national and state protocols to keep our facilities clean and sanitized.

    We also are prepared to employ other safety measures recommended by expert organizations like the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Pennsylvania Department of Health, Pennsylvania Department of Education, and the American College Health Association.

    Face Coverings

    Based on recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control about fully vaccinated individuals, IUP will not require indoor face coverings/masks for fully vaccinated individuals.

    Individuals who are not fully vaccinated are urged to follow CDC guidelines recommending masking indoors; students, employees, and visitors are expected to be on the honor system related to masking.

    Any student, employee, or visitor who chooses to be masked (regardless of vaccination status) is encouraged and welcomed to do so. Masking is not required indoors for fully vaccinated individuals (all are to be on the honor system regarding masking).

    Safety Kits and Protective Equipment

    Students and employees will receive individual safety kits when returning to campus for the semester. In addition, Central Stores has a strong supply of personal protective equipment and other COVID-19 related safety items.

    The list of items and information about ordering additional personal protective equipment is available on the Central Stores site. Each department should delegate one person to collect and submit a reservation for that department’s needs.

    Sanitizing Classrooms

    To help you feel more comfortable in the classroom, cleaning supplies are available so that you can sanitize your seat and desk. We ask that students and faculty members sanitize their areas when they leave the classroom.

    We will continue to follow rigorous cleaning protocols and guidelines of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the state for common and high traffic areas, such as hallways, elevators, and restrooms, to keep buildings safe. Employees have been trained on these processes.

    Parking

    Pay-by-space machines are cleaned at the beginning of each day’s shift by parking security officers as part of a daily maintenance check. The Passport Pay-by-Phone app has made no-contact payment available.

    IndiGO Bus

    IndiGO continues to operate the campus shuttle route according to Centers for Disease Control guidelines, requiring riders to wear masks. All active students with an I-Card will continue to have free IndiGO bus service.

    Guidance for IUP Employees

    When possible and practical, IUP employees are encouraged to work remotely to limit the number of people on site.

    The guidelines below will assist managers in overseeing employees' return to campus. This information—which follows guidelines established by the Pennsylvania Department of Health, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Pennsylvania Department of Education, and State System—enables effective operations and employees’ safe return when in-person operation is required.

    1. Meetings should be virtual when possible. Keep attendance at essential in-person meetings, so contact tracing can be done, if needed.
      • If in-person meetings must be held, remove or redistribute chairs or include signage to ensure proper social distancing.
      • Remove commonly touched items (e.g. pens, tape, white board markers).
    2. Provide materials for self-sanitization of workspaces.
    3. Remove guest chairs if office sizes do not allow proper social distancing, or add signage to indicate where individuals can sit.
    4. Stagger employee breaks and meal periods to limit the number of people in communal spaces at one time. Supervisors can alter meal periods and breaks to accommodate social distancing.
      • In communal areas, employees should try to avoid direct contact with hard surfaces, including refrigerators, microwaves, coffee pots, water coolers/fountains, chairs, tables, etc. Employees are encouraged to use paper towels when touching surfaces and to use wipes to disinfect before and after every use.

    High-Risk Employees

    Individual employees with health conditions that might place them at high risk for severe illness from COVID-19, as defined under CDC guidance, may request a flexible work assignment. Employees wishing to make such a request should follow the process outlined on the Human Resources website.

    Faculty Office Visits

    • Faculty members who want to make use of their office should coordinate their visits with their chair, who will maintain a schedule to ensure that offices are limited to no more than 50 percent normal occupancy at any time, as directed in the employee information, above.
    • Chairs must communicate to faculty members that, to prevent overcrowding and maintain safety, unscheduled office visits are not allowed.
    • These department schedules will be made available in advance on a weekly basis to the dean or designee.
    • Deans or their designees will communicate these schedules to Facilities to ensure that any needed changes to cleaning schedules can be accommodated.
    • When entering university buildings, faculty members should follow all safety guidelines indicated on this page.

    Preventing COVID-19

    (Strategy for Mitigation)

    The following are requirements from the CDC for proper hygiene and preventing the spread of COVID-19:

    Wash Your Hands Often

    • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after you have been in a public place or after blowing your nose, coughing, sneezing, or using the bathroom.
    • If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.
    • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

    Avoid Close Contact

    • Avoid close contact with people who are sick, even inside your home. If possible, maintain as much distance as practical between the person who is sick and other household members.
    • Put distance (at least six feet) between you and other people outside of your home.

    Use Face Coverings

    Individuals who are not fully vaccinated are urged to follow CDC guidelines recommending masking indoors; fully vaccinated individuals should follow CDC guidelines about masking.

    Clean and Disinfect

    Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks.

    Thermometers

    Thermometers will be provided when required by a discipline for accreditation standards or governing body guidelines.

    Communication Plan

    IUP uses a digital-first strategy that provides all of our audiences a clear overview of what to expect in light of the COVID-19 pandemic, including general guidelines to keep the community safe.

    Overall methods of communicating include this website, the MyIUP student portal, electronic newsletters, IUP social media channels, email, videos, printed materials and packets, and campus signage.

    We will report confirmed student cases of COVID-19 via our COVID-19 Dashboard. The dashboard notes if the student is an on-campus or off-campus resident.

    Information about testing and quarantine procedures are found on the Testing and Positive Cases page.

    Student Communication Methods

    Students receive regular information and updates through MyIUP, the IUP Mobile app, their IUP email address, electronic newsletters, and IUP social media accounts. Students will also receive an informational flier in their fall 2021 safety kits.

    Parent Communication Methods

    Information and updates will be available via the parent newsletter and this website.

    Employee Communication Methods

    Employees receive information through the IUP Now electronic newsletter, email, communications from Human Resources, and this website.

    Community Collaboration

    IUP and Indiana County leadership are collaborating on communication campaigns to promote responsible behavior that protects the health and safety of the entire county and of students’ home communities.

    Contingency Communication Plan

    If needed, emergency notifications will be sent through the Everbridge system, which includes text messages, phone calls, and emails. If you are not registered for these emergency notifications, you can do so online.

    Emergency messages will also be shared on the IUP website (alert banner on the home page, updates to this site, news item), through MyIUP announcements for students, and on IUP social media channels.

    If necessary, messages will be sent to additional audiences outside of the campus community, including alumni, friends, and prospective students.

    This site will have the most recent and current information.