As of March 1, 2022, the wearing of masks is optional in indoor spaces. However, the College will continue to require masks in all classrooms, laboratories and studio spaces regardless of vaccination status. The continued wearing of masks in small, congested spaces is strongly suggested.
General Health and Hygiene Requirements
- All students and employees will not visit campus community spaces whenever they are sick or have symptoms of respiratory illness.
- All students and employees must follow these health guidelines as outlined below:
- Students and employees who are experiencing any symptoms of COVID-19, or other respiratory illness, should not visit campus until such symptoms are no longer present and as directed by the St. Mary’s County Department of Public Health and the CDC guidance. The CDC maintains a current list of symptoms associated with COVID-19.
- Wash hands frequently for at least 20 seconds, preferably with soap and warm water, particularly after coming into contact with high-touch surfaces, such as doorknobs, handrails, and commonly used equipment. When soap and warm water are not immediately available, use hand sanitizer containing ethanol (ethyl alcohol) or isopropanol (isopropyl alcohol) not methanol (methyl alcohol) or use sanitizing wipes.
- Cough/sneeze into sleeves, preferably into the elbow. When using a tissue, discard it properly into a wastebasket or plastic bag and clean/sanitize hands immediately.
- Avoid touching your face — particularly your eyes, nose, and mouth — with your hands to prevent infection.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces in personal study and work spaces.
COVID-19 Specific Health Reporting Requirements
- Students who believe they have COVID-19 symptoms and are seeking a PCR test at the Wellness Center must first schedule an appointment for an assessment with the nurse practitioner by calling 240-895-4289. Faculty and staff should use off-campus testing options, including free COVID-19 tests through the federal government (https://www.covidtests.gov).
- In the event of a positive or suspected COVID-19 diagnosis, students and employees will cooperate fully with the College’s isolation, quarantine, contact tracing, and notification protocols, in alignment with St. Mary’s County Public Health Department and the CDC.
- It is very important to the health and safety of our community to report any positive COVID-19
results. Students, faculty and staff are asked to complete this self-report Reporting a PositiveCOVID-19 Test form. You can also use this form to alert the Wellness Center staff to a concern about a roommate/friend/classmate who may be sick.
- Students and employees will not visit or remain in any campus community spaces while experiencing any symptoms of COVID-19 (or other respiratory illnesses), such as cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fever, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, muscle pain or body aches, headache, or chills.
- Students and employees who experience an onset of symptoms while at any campus community space will leave campus or return to their residence immediately. Staff should contact their manager and the Office of Human Resources to request leave. Faculty should contact their department chair or coordinator. Student workers should contact their work supervisors.
- Employees who are unable to work due to personal illness should use available sick time. If an employee’s available sick time has already been exhausted, they should contact the Office of Human Resources to discuss available leave options.
- Employees who are unable to work due to COVID-19 should review the College’s Families First Coronavirus Response Family Medical Leave and Sick Leave Policy. Submission of documentation for leave under the policy and questions regarding the policy should be directed to the Office of Human Resources.
- The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention encourages vaccinated people to be tested 5-7 days after an exposure from a close contact. Unvaccinated people should be tested 3-5 days after exposure. While waiting for test results please follow all safety guidelines. If you receive notification that you tested positive you will need to report the test to the Wellness Center and follow directions on isolation.
- The College does not regulate the personal travel of employees but will inform employees about government requirements regarding travel where applicable.
Meetings, Events and Visitors
Indoor gatherings and meetings
- For on-campus meetings and events, campus community members need to present their College ID as part of the College’s vaccination policy.
- Campus visitors must be up to date on vaccinations for COVID-19 and be able to present proof upon request by College officials when attending indoor events or large gatherings outside when social distancing cannot be ensured. If campus visitors are not up to date on vaccinations or cannot show proof, they must present proof of a negative COVID-19 test taken within 72 hours of arrival to campus.
Outdoor gatherings and meetings
- Visitors must be up to date on vaccinations for COVID-19 and be able to present proof upon request by College officials.
COVID-19 VACCINE Testing, Symptom Monitoring, Quarantine/Isolation, & Contact Tracing Update
Students and employees must provide proof of vaccine before they may be on campus.
- St. Mary’s College of Maryland has updated its vaccine policy to require all eligible students and employees to receive COVID-19 booster shots.
- Effective Monday, January 17, 2022, all vaccinated students and employees will be required to receive a booster shot within 30 days of becoming eligible.
- Students and employees must upload a copy of their updated vaccination card, reporting the date on which they received their booster shot, to the Wellness Center confidential Medicat Records by January 17, 2022 (or 30 days after becoming eligible for a booster if eligibility is after December 21, 2021). Uploading instructions can be found HERE.
- Employees who have already filed an exemption from COVID-19 vaccination must notify Human Resources to confirm their intention to continue the exemption. Students who have filed an exemption must notify the Wellness Center of their intention to continue the exemption.
- Twice weekly testing for all unvaccinated students and employees will continue, which will include those who currently are not eligible for a booster and those with exemptions. In addition, a random sample of our community will be subjected to surveillance testing during the first six weeks of the spring semester regardless of vaccination status.
- If you need to obtain a COVID-19 vaccine, please visit the St. Mary’s County Health Department website smchd.org/covid-19-vaccine/ or your local county health department.
- Students who fail to comply with the vaccine policy will be prohibited from attending classes. Faculty and staff who fail to comply with the vaccine policy will be treated in accordance with terms and conditions outlined by Human Resources.
Required COVID-19 testing during the semester
- During the semester, testing will be conducted for members of our community who are unvaccinated.
- All members of the community should self-monitor for symptoms of COVID-19.
All members of the community should self-monitor for symptoms of COVID-19
- Shortness of breath
- Chills and shaking
- Muscle pain
- Sore throat
- New loss of taste or smell
- Anyone who is experiencing a medical emergency, should call 911
What to do if you’re experiencing symptoms
- Stay home or in your residence hall room and away from others (except for necessary medical evaluation or COVID-19 testing).
- Contact a medical provider to arrange for consultation and testing within 48 hours of the start of symptoms.
- If you are on campus:
- Students who believe they have COVID-19 symptoms and are seeking a PCR test at the Wellness Center must first schedule an appointment for an assessment with the nurse practitioner by calling 240-895-4289. Faculty and staff should use off-campus testing options, including free COVID-19 tests through the federal government (https://www.covidtests.gov/).
- If you are off campus:
- Click here for more information on what to do if you’re sick.
Individuals With No Symptoms
- If you are fully vaccinated and have had close contact with someone who has COVID-19, you may continue with your daily activities, follow the mask mandates on campus, and assess your health. If you develop symptoms you should get tested.
- If you are not vaccinated and have had close contact with someone who has COVID-19, you must be tested, follow all safety precautions and assess your health until you have been notified of your results. If you are a student please contact the Wellness Center at 240-895-4289 to discuss your risk and how to safely quarantine.
- The CDC definition of a “close contact” through proximity and duration of exposure is someone who was less than 6 feet away from an infected person (laboratory-confirmed or a clinical diagnosis) for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period.
What to do after being tested for COVID-19
- Follow all safety guidelines.
- If you are experiencing symptoms please seek medical help.
Receiving your test results
- If testing was administered at the Wellness Center, you will be contacted about your results.
- If the test is administered off campus, the provider who ordered the test will notify you of your test results.
- Once you receive your test results, contact the Wellness Center main line at 240-895-4289 whether or not the results are positive or negative.
What happens if you test positive
- If you are on campus:
- You will follow guidelines for isolation on campus.
- Commuter students, faculty, and staff in these cases should stay at home, separate themselves from others, continue with risk mitigation practices, and be in contact with their healthcare provider.
- If students will miss class because of illness contact the Office of Student Support Services.
- If employees are unable to complete their duties, they should contact their supervisor or Human Resources to discuss options.
- You should maintain a supply of food at home and be knowledgeable about ordering food delivery from your local grocery store.
- Each positive test will be reported to the State of Maryland so that the St. Mary’s County Health Department can follow up with contact tracing.
How you will know when to return to campus and/or in-person classes after being in isolation
- Your personal healthcare provider, the St. Mary’s County Health Department, or the Wellness Center will assess your symptoms and review your test results and give guidance about when you can return to regular activities.
- Isolation can last 5-10 days from the date symptoms first started or when you were tested positive for COVID-19. Follow the recommendations of your healthcare provider or the Wellness Center.