Coronavirus (COVID-19) FAQs

Updated June 1, 2020

Questions about Fall 2020

Students who are applying for admission to the College of Charleston for fall 2021 can choose to have their application evaluated without SAT or ACT scores. Although the College typically takes a holistic approach to the application review process, the unusual circumstances this year around COVID-19 allow us to evaluate the extent to which a student’s academic performance (such as grades and rigorous coursework) is a better predictor of success at our university.

This will be especially helpful for those high school seniors who feel that SAT or ACT test scores do not adequately reflect their level of academic achievement, or who, due to disruptions caused by COVID-19, may not be able to take the SAT or ACT test this year before they submit their application.

However, there are some applicants who will have to submit test scores, including those who are home-schooled.

Applicants to the Honors College will not be required to submit test scores. The Honors College has historically used a holistic review process that emphasizes transcripts and supplementary documents rather than a test score, and students applying test-optional to the College will not be disadvantaged in the Honors application review process.

As you might guess, how a test-optional decision will impact scholarships is a major concern for many students and families. The State of South Carolina does require an official SAT or ACT test score to award state scholarships (LIFE, HOPE, PALMETTO FELLOWS), but students can apply as test-optional candidates and submit those scores after they have been admitted. Students who choose not to submit test scores will be considered for College of Charleston merit-based scholarships.

This year, when students first apply to the College of Charleston, they will decide whether or not they want the College to use test scores as part of the application-evaluation process. If students have already sent test scores to the College, but apply to be test-optional, then their scores will not be used in the review process. The College of Charleston application will open August 1, 2020.

Next summer (in 2021), the College of Charleston will examine the results of this year’s test-optional pilot program and determine whether or not to continue or expand it for future admission cycles.

You can read more about this test-optional pilot program here on The College Today.

 

President Andrew Hsu sent the following message to the campus community on June 1, 2020:

Dear Campus Community,

I wanted to provide you a brief update regarding an important step in our return-to-campus planning. As you can imagine, there are a thousand moving parts in bringing an enterprise like a university back to “normal” operations. However, a big piece is determining the fall academic calendar so that many other working groups can make their plans around that decision.

For the past several weeks, a group of our faculty and staff have been looking at a wide range of options for our fall classes. Should we be online, should we push the calendar up or back, should we consider a series of Express classes? All had pros, and all had cons.

The solution they have presented to me – and one that I agree is the best – is a hybrid approach that keeps our fall academic calendar intact, while eliminating Fall Break so that in-person instruction can end at Thanksgiving break, with a following week of online instruction and online exams. In order to not penalize those students who may have difficulty in a virtual setting, faculty will be instructed to design their courses so that meaningful assessment is done throughout the semester. And, of course, we have incorporated plenty of storm dates in anticipation of what may be a very active hurricane season. Here is a link specifically to the fall 2020 calendar: https://registrar.cofc.edu/calendars/ac-2020fall.php.

Read more here

As the College moves toward reopening as per President Hsu’s Return-to-Work Plan, the Office of Parking Services is implementing a corresponding phased plan for parking, as follows:

PHASE 1: Starting May 26

  • The Return-to-Work Phase 1 implementation date is Tuesday, May 26, 2020.
  • B Lot and WA Lot: The gates will be lowered at these two surface lots. Any vehicle not belonging to B Lot or WA Lot permit holders must be removed prior to 8:00 a.m. Tuesday, May 26.
  • PG Garage: The entrance and exit gates will remain open through Phase 1.
  • Student surface lots will not be ticketed until the first day of fall classes. However, these lots will be used for residence hall move-in. If you are using a student lot, please watch your College email for announcements concerning closures.
  • Employee surface lots (excluding B and WA Lots) will not be ticketed through Phase 1.
  • Parking permit fees will not be reinstated until Phase 3.

Parking Services will provide further details regarding parking during Phases 2 and 3 once those dates are announced.


2020-2021 Permit Applications:

We will be sending out details about the 2020-2021 employee permit application process in June. Please monitor your CofC email for that information.

If you have any questions, please direct them to parkingservices@cofc.edu.

Cloth face maks will be made available to the campus community. Central Stores will also have cleaning supplies and wipes.

Student Health Services (SHS) is following the guidance of the Centers for Disease Control and SC department of health & environment control and consulting with MUSC regarding testing for everyone on campus. The current recommendation is to only test those who are symptomatic. Our measures are all meant to address those with asymptomatic and presymptomatic potential carriers of the virus. That’s what the evidence based guidance is recommending at this time.

SHS is preparing for the anticipated second wave of COVID-19 with students is planning to do contact tracing with DHEC and MUSC as necessary and on campus, in the same way that we did with the mumps outbreak last fall. SHS will do the best they can to treat any student in need of care.

Student Affairs is working on designating space to quarantine students diagnosed with COVID-19.

Employees in high-risk categories remain strongly encouraged to continue working remotely to the extent possible. These categories include:

  • Older adults (aged 65 years and older)
  • People with HIV
  • Asthma (moderate-to-severe)
  • Chronic lung disease
  • Diabetes
  • Serious heart conditions
  • Chronic kidney disease being treated with dialysis
  • Severe obesity
  • Being im

President Hsu announced that the College is initiating its Return-to-Work Plan, a multi-phased approach for our campus to slowly, methodically and safely begin its path back to “normal” operations.

Just to be clear, during Phase One, the vast majority of our employees will continue to work remotely.

In order for the campus to be successful, we will have to practice safety collectively. Our desire to reopen campus to our students in the fall is contingent on our entire campus community’s ability to be disciplined in following safety and health procedures as outlined here – and that doesn’t even factor in state and federal restrictions if pandemic numbers spike in the coming weeks and/or months.

 

This is a work-in-progress in which we’re looking at the current guidelines that will evolve over the next few weeks. We are looking into ways we can have students travel around campus how we can limit gatherings, and how we can create virtual events. We learned a lot from the mumps and can engage the students to help come up with solutions that they think will create a good experience for them while still keeping them safe.

We have a task force working on the academic experience in the fall. We have a very creative team that is working on social distancing protocols and the learning experience.

The College has a residence life taskforce looking at housing and dining protocols. Business and Auxiliary Services (including Campus Housing and Dining Services) is working closely with Residence Life, Student Health Services, Facilities Management and other College of Charleston and health officials regarding the details of living and dining on campus this fall. These include to-go menu options, facility occupancy models, cleaning and disinfecting practices, testing, tracing, quarantine and isolation protocols, and more. We will provide more information as soon as those details are established.

 

The College has discussed and decided to cancel all international programs (College, exchange and affiliates for Fall Semester 2020). Specifically, we will not send students on our own semester programs. We will not send students on exchange and will not accept exchange students from abroad. We will not approve study abroad on affiliate programs.

We are hopeful that we will be able to plan international programs for Spring Semester 2021.

Please send any questions/concerns to Andrew Sobiesuo at SobiesuoA@cofc.edu.

Recruitment is tracking at a similar level to this date last year, which we see as a positive. The admissions team is working on strategies to ensure that students will enroll with us in the fall including the launch of a virtual visit center, additional aid strategy for students in need and giving students more time to decide if they want to enroll.

We are hopeful that we will begin on time with in-person classes. To that end, we have established several internal working groups that are conducting research, modeling various scenarios and making contingency plans for a wide range of possibilities in the fall. These ten groups are evaluating everything from instruction delivery and housing to employee work schedules and campus events/activities.

Each group will develop and submit their recommendations to President Hsu no later than June 15, 2020, after which time we hope to announce more details about the fall semester. To help formalize these plans, we will also convene an overall steering committee, which will be made up of student leaders, faculty leaders, staff leaders and senior team members to evaluate these various workgroup recommendations.

Even if you are not directly involved in this planning, your opinion and ideas are important. We encourage you to submit any thoughts you may have on this issue by sending an email to covid19@cofc.edu. We have many brilliant minds on campus, and all ideas will receive consideration.

Below you will find a list of these initial working groups, points of contact and their charges.

COVID-19 Workgroups:

Fall 2020 Academic Schedule/Calendar Workgroup (point of contact: Fran Welch) – purpose: to consider alterations needed/required to the semester calendar/schedule as well as any changes that may be needed for the classroom environment.

Spring 2020 Residential Move-out Workgroup (point of contact: Amy Orr/Melantha Ardrey) – purpose: to coordinate and facilitate the move-out of the approximately 600 students who still have belongings in the residence halls/historic houses.

Employees Returning to Work/Campus Workgroup (point of contact: Ed Pope) – purpose: to prepare campus for the eventual return of employees. Please note that some employees may be able to return to campus before June 15, 2020.

Alternative Commencement Workgroup (point of contact: Devon Hanahan and Jonathan Ray) – purpose: plan for an alternative Class of 2020 commencement.

Fall 2020 Residential Experience Workgroup (point of contact: Alicia Caudill) – purpose: consider alternatives and adjustments needed to safeguard the residential community.

CARES Act Workgroup (point of contact: Robert Kersey) – purpose: to formulate procedures and protocols for the use of the student emergency funds from the CARES Act.

Student Engagement/Experience Workgroup (point of contact: Alicia Caudill) – purpose: to consider student life initiatives to keep overall student population engaged in the campus experience.

Student Health Services Workgroup (point of contact: Bridget McLernon-Sykes) – purpose: to consider medical/health initiatives necessary to protect the health and safety of our campus population, especially with the possible resumption of classes in fall.

Facilities Maintenance/Custodial Workgroup (point of contact: John Morris) – purpose: to consider deep-cleaning protocols, general campus hygiene protocols and other issues involving facilities maintenance and custodial work.

IT/Technology Needs Workgroup (point of contact: Mark Staples) – purpose: to consider technology interventions and other IT needs to assist students, faculty and staff returning to campus or working/learning remotely.

Please direct questions to the Financial Aid office at: financialaid@cofc.edu.

 

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Questions about Academic Calendar and Grading

Students who are applying for admission to the College of Charleston for fall 2021 can choose to have their application evaluated without SAT or ACT scores. Although the College typically takes a holistic approach to the application review process, the unusual circumstances this year around COVID-19 allow us to evaluate the extent to which a student’s academic performance (such as grades and rigorous coursework) is a better predictor of success at our university.

This will be especially helpful for those high school seniors who feel that SAT or ACT test scores do not adequately reflect their level of academic achievement, or who, due to disruptions caused by COVID-19, may not be able to take the SAT or ACT test this year before they submit their application.

However, there are some applicants who will have to submit test scores, including those who are home-schooled.

Applicants to the Honors College will not be required to submit test scores. The Honors College has historically used a holistic review process that emphasizes transcripts and supplementary documents rather than a test score, and students applying test-optional to the College will not be disadvantaged in the Honors application review process.

As you might guess, how a test-optional decision will impact scholarships is a major concern for many students and families. The State of South Carolina does require an official SAT or ACT test score to award state scholarships (LIFE, HOPE, PALMETTO FELLOWS), but students can apply as test-optional candidates and submit those scores after they have been admitted. Students who choose not to submit test scores will be considered for College of Charleston merit-based scholarships.

This year, when students first apply to the College of Charleston, they will decide whether or not they want the College to use test scores as part of the application-evaluation process. If students have already sent test scores to the College, but apply to be test-optional, then their scores will not be used in the review process. The College of Charleston application will open August 1, 2020.

Next summer (in 2021), the College of Charleston will examine the results of this year’s test-optional pilot program and determine whether or not to continue or expand it for future admission cycles.

You can read more about this test-optional pilot program here on The College Today.

 

President Andrew Hsu sent the following message to the campus community on June 1, 2020:

Dear Campus Community,

I wanted to provide you a brief update regarding an important step in our return-to-campus planning. As you can imagine, there are a thousand moving parts in bringing an enterprise like a university back to “normal” operations. However, a big piece is determining the fall academic calendar so that many other working groups can make their plans around that decision.

For the past several weeks, a group of our faculty and staff have been looking at a wide range of options for our fall classes. Should we be online, should we push the calendar up or back, should we consider a series of Express classes? All had pros, and all had cons.

The solution they have presented to me – and one that I agree is the best – is a hybrid approach that keeps our fall academic calendar intact, while eliminating Fall Break so that in-person instruction can end at Thanksgiving break, with a following week of online instruction and online exams. In order to not penalize those students who may have difficulty in a virtual setting, faculty will be instructed to design their courses so that meaningful assessment is done throughout the semester. And, of course, we have incorporated plenty of storm dates in anticipation of what may be a very active hurricane season. Here is a link specifically to the fall 2020 calendar: https://registrar.cofc.edu/calendars/ac-2020fall.php.

Read more here

Dear College of Charleston graduation candidates,

As we approach the end of the final exam period, I want to wish you all continued good luck as well as provide you with an updated report on our commencement rescheduling plan.

For the past several weeks, a committee of faculty and staff have been working to create a celebration befitting you, our 250th-year graduates.

Based on your feedback and COVID-19 pandemic conditions allowing, we have tentatively set the weekend of October 9-11 for our commencement celebrations. Since the early part of October is still part of the traditional hurricane season, we have also set the date of October 23-25 as a make-up/storm date. At this point, please do not make any travel or accommodation reservations that cannot be refunded or rescheduled. It is important that you and your families make travel arrangements always with refunds in mind, just in case.

Our general plan is to have multiple graduation ceremonies take place on Sunday, October 11, with ceremony rehearsals occurring on that Saturday and individual department/school receptions on Friday evening. However, depending on the number of participants of these ceremonies, which we will know once the participation/ticket portal is opened later this summer, we may need to schedule an additional Saturday evening ceremony to go along with the Sunday ceremonies. That is why we have reserved the entire weekends of October 9-11 and October 23-25 (for make-up/storm date).

Our committee’s goal is to reach a decision on a finalized date and its details as soon as possible without rushing, and without limiting our options based on municipal, state and/or federal guidelines with regards to social distancing and size of gatherings. Our plan, if possible, is to give you much more information by July 1, at the latest.

While I sincerely hope we can convene a commencement ceremony in person on campus in October (the weather is usually warm and beautiful), we have to plan for other possibilities also. Therefore, I’m tasking the commencement committee to continue to work towards an October event, as well as to develop contingencies for an in-person celebration whenever guidelines permit us to do so safely.

Please be assured that you and your families will be kept up to date as decisions are made. As we work our way through the different scenarios, our goal remains the same: to celebrate your accomplishments in a meaningful, yet safe way.

In the meantime, as it relates to your transcripts, there is no reason to tie the in-person ceremony to your actual academic record. To that end, spring undergraduate degrees will be conferred on May 9, 2020, and posted to the student record on May 12, 2020. Spring graduate degrees will be conferred on May 8, 2020, and posted to the student record on May 12, 2020. Diplomas will be mailed six (6) to eight (8) weeks after this degree conferral date. Summer degrees will be conferred and posted to the student record on August 10, 2020. Diplomas will be mailed six (6) to eight (8) weeks after that degree conferral date.

Again, I applaud all of you for your hard work through this most difficult time, and I look forward to seeing you as soon as possible on campus to congratulate you in person!

Sincerely,

Andrew

Andrew T. Hsu, Ph.D.

President

College of Charleston
66 George Street
Charleston, SC 29424
Office: 843.953.5500
Twitter and Instagram: @CofCHsu

 

For the health and safety of our students, families, faculty and staff, the College of Charleston New Student and Family Orientation will be held online this summer.

The Office of New Student Programs staff is currently working on a schedule of events. If you have participated in orientation in the past, you will be contacted about the new schedule by May 29th. If you haven’t received information by the 29th, please email Stephanie Auwaerter at auwaerters@cofc.edu.

Students will be expected to complete online activities on their assigned orientation date. The summer 2020 dates will be as follows:

Orientation Session Dates  
Session 1 July 8 and 9 Original date June 15 and 16
Session 6 July 13 and 14 Date unchanged
Session 7 July 16 and 17 Date unchanged
Session 8 July 20 and 21 Date unchanged
Session 2 23-Jul Original date June 18 and 19
Session 3 24-Jul Original date June 22 and 23
Session 4 July 27 and 28 Original date June 29 and 30
Session 5 July 30 and 31 Original date July 8 and 9
Session 9 August 3 and 4 Original date August 17 and 18
Session 10 August 6 and 7 Original date August 20 and 21

We appreciate your support and help in welcoming new students and their families to the CofC community.

We welcome your inquiries via e-mail or phone (843.953.2017).

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Questions about Campus/Student Services

The College received approximately $3.8 million in the first round of funding from the federal CARES Act. This money is intended to support eligible students who were enrolled in college during the spring semester and experienced a disruption in their learning environment because of the response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The College developed a plan for the distribution of these funds to students based on financial aid filings, with priority given to students with the greatest financial need. Students eligible to receive funding were notified directly via email on May 11, 2020, and were provided with instructions for receiving these funds. Individual grants ranged from $400 up to $1,000.

Questions about CARES Act funding should be directed to financialaid@cofc.edu.

Several South Carolina health systems are offering telehealth options to the public. These options are available to anyone experiencing COVID-19 symptoms in South Carolina. In order to access the free consult, use the promo code COVID19.

Please visit Telehealth Virtual Care Providers (COVID-19).

Listed below are online resources with information on the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak and prevention, as well as advice on how to talk to children about it. To access the websites, please click on the links below.

Read more here.

Rented textbooks can be returned using a free shipping label. The bookstore has begun emailing students with reminders and a link to the prepaid label. More detailed information can be found on the College of Charleston Barnes & Noble website.

Students can sell back their textbooks online through a Barnes & Noble partnership with MBS Textbook Exchange. Visit the College of Charleston Barnes & Noble website and scroll down to the “Sell Back Your Books for Cash” graphic for more information.

 

Yes. The College of Charleston has resources to help students learn remotely. Go to “Learning Remotely” to access the tools to assist students with modifying their learning style to an online/remote format.

Paid leave options are available for student employees who are not able to work (on campus or remotely) or who are able to work only part of their normal schedule due to the COVID-19 response.  Please review the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFRCA) information below and on the links provided later in this email.

Affected student employees include: graduate assistants, research assistants, federal work study and non-work study students who are not able to work their normal schedule due to COVID-19. These individuals may apply for the FFRCA by completing the FFRCA application linked below.

After submitting the FFRCA application, complete your electronic timesheet for the period of April 1-15, 2020, using the Temp/Student FFRCA Sick 100% boxes for the normally scheduled hours you are unable to work. Do not report hours on April 15 or your timesheet will be returned for corrections. You should continue to post the hours you are able to work in the unmarked (normal) grid on your timesheet.

For more information and to apply for Emergency Paid Sick Leave, click HERE.

For more information and to apply for Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act (EFMLA), click HERE.

If you have questions or need assistance with applying for the leave options described in this notice, please contact your supervisor or Cheryl Wingert or Hannah Beam at studentemployment@cofc.edu.

Business and Auxiliary Services continues to support the College of Charleston’s educational and service mission during the remote learning period.

Although the College has moved to a remote-work status, we are here to serve you.  For updates regarding our services, please see below.

For general inquiries, email us at auxiliaryservices@cofc.edu.

Barnes & Noble at the College of Charleston
Store Manager: Stephen Jones
sm421@bncollege.com
843.953.5518 (voicemail is being checked routinely)

  • The bookstore is currently closed. Books and other course materials are available for purchase online via the College of Charleston Barnes & Noble website with free ground shipping on all orders.
  • Rented textbooks can be returned using a free shipping label. The bookstore has begun emailing students with reminders and a link to the prepaid label. More detailed information can be found on the College of Charleston Barnes & Noble website.
  • Students can sell back their textbooks online through a Barnes & Noble partnership with MBS Textbook Exchange. Visit the College of Charleston Barnes & Noble website and scroll down to the “Sell Back Your Books for Cash” graphic for more information.

Campus Housing
housing@cofc.edu
843.953.5523

  • Campus Housing is assisting students with move-out for spring 2020, as well as serving those students who received an exception to remain in campus housing due to extenuating circumstances.
  • We continue to process fall 2020 housing contracts and assignments for first-year students and room selection for returning students, as well as access control for the residence halls and houses.

Copy Center
copycenter@cofc.edu
843.953.5924

  • The Copy Center is fulfilling orders and delivering them to the Mail Services locker banks for contact-free retrieval. Please contact us by email if you have any questions regarding our services. We look forward to serving you as soon as possible.

Cougar Card Services
cougarcard@cofc.edu
843.953.1100

  • Deposit Cougar Cash by following our website instructions under Student Cougar Cash for online deposits.

Dining Services
diningservices@cofc.edu
843.953.1414
Instagram: @cofcdining

Dining Services is offering breakfast, lunch and dinner for pick-up from the window at City Bistro. Meals are available for every day of the week, from noon to 2:00 p.m., Monday – Friday (with Friday pick-up including meals for the weekend).

For more details and to learn about made-to-order, ready-to-eat meals and Meal Kit options, please go to the Dining Services website, charleston.campusdish.com, or feel free to contact us by phone or email.

All CofC students who were enrolled as of spring 2020 – with or without a meal plan – are welcome to utilize this service. Please bring your Cougar Card with you each day to pick up your meals.

Mail Services
mailservices@cofc.edu
843.953.5534

Mail Services will continue to accept inbound and outbound shipments from all couriers until further notice. The customer service counter is closed.

Employee mail and packages will be managed through departmental/office pickup and drop-off using the locker banks in the lobby of Mail Services. Please visit the Mail Services website for important details about this process.

STUDENTS

  • The Ashley and Cooper locker banks in the Mail Services lobby remain available 24/7.
  • If you received an “expiry email notification,” your item is still located in that locker bank with the same PIN.
  • To forward your student mail if you have not already done so through the move-out form, please complete the following survey: https://cofc.qualtrics.com/jfe/form/SV_9TwEG3YZnoJBszj

Parking Services
Parkingservices@cofc.edu
843.953.7834

  • Employees and students who need to manage their parking account, including paying for any citations, can access the account via MyCharleston and the MyAccounts tab.
  • Employees should refer to their CofC email account for updates regarding our phased plan for parking.

Sottile Theatre
sottiletheatre@cofc.edu
843.953.6340

Please contact us via email if you have any questions regarding Sottile Theatre. We look forward to serving you as soon as possible.

The Student Emergency Fund offers resources will be directed specifically to support CofC students in this time of need.

The Division of Student Affairs is accepting applications for student emergency funding. You may apply for support on the Student Affairs website.

Applications will be reviewed and will be turned around as quickly as possible. Need considerations include:

  • Food, medical, and basic household needs
  • Housing and rent
  • Academic needs (books, school supplies, e-learning support, technology)

If you have any questions, please reach out to Alicia Caudill (caudillad@cofc.edu) or to Susan Hartman (hartmans@cofc.edu).

If you are interested in giving to the Student Emergency Relief fund, go here.

Unused Dining Dollars will carry over each semester until a student graduates or separates (through withdrawal or a leave of absence) from the College. Cougar Card Services will refund the Dining Dollar account balance for graduating or separated students after receipt of the Dining Dollar Refund Form. Refunds cannot be issued for account balances less than $10. Refunds will be issued via direct deposit if an account is set up with the Treasurer’s Office. If direct deposit is not set up, a check will be mailed to the primary address on file or as stated in the request.

The Counseling Center is a great resource for students experiencing anxiety.

These are challenging times for all of us as we navigate new technology and readjust our everyday lives. TAO Connect is an app and online resource program that helps you explore wellness topics and guides you through creating strategies that can be applied in your daily life. Maybe you are looking for some strategies for dealing with this stressful time or maybe you want to preventatively learn some meditation and mindfulness techniques prior to final exams. The pathways on TAO can help you address these and many more areas. And, you can access all of this from the comfort of wherever you are.

Each treatment/ pathway in TAO consists of 6-7 highly engaging educational modules, including interactive activities to help you learn strategies and skills. Typically, a program can be completed within 6 to 9 weeks when committing about 15 minutes a day. Additionally, if focused problems unexpectedly surface, such as anxiety or stress, you can always access individual modules to reinforce what you have learned.

Here’s how to get started:

Go to https://thepath.taoconnect.org/local/self_help/signup.php to set up an account. You must use your g.cofc.edu email address.
Fill out your general information and submit it. You’ll be sent an email with a temporary password momentarily.
Click the link in the confirmation email to login and change your password to set up your account.
You’re ready to go!

If you have questions or need further assistance, please contact the Counseling Center at counseling@cofc.edu or 843-953-5640.

Also, just a reminder, you can find more information about accessing multiple areas of support available to you here.

Yes. Refunds will be issued and will be calculated based on a prorated daily rate beginning the week after spring break when the College moved to online instruction. Refunds will be processed by the College over the next two weeks and will be posted to students’ MyCharleston accounts.

This policy was developed in collaboration with the other state public higher education institutions and the South Carolina Commission on Higher Education. Read President Hsu’s messaeg to students and families.

When will I be able to return to campus to move out of my residence hall or house?

Upon S.C. Governor Henry McMaster’s lifting of travel restrictions starting May 4, 2020, Campus Housing is now able to offer move-out dates for our students. Please monitor your College of Charleston student email for important information regarding the move-out process from housing@cofc.edu.

In order to be allowed entry into your residence hall or house, you must complete the included sign-up form emailed to you. We have limited date and time selections in order to maintain health and safety protocols, especially social-distancing practices.

• Do not travel to campus without a confirmed date and time slot for your move-out; you will not be allowed access without one.
• Residents may bring no more than one adult with them into the residence halls or houses to assist with move-out.
• You and anyone helping you will be required to wear masks while inside the residence halls and houses.

Residence halls and houses are not reopening for occupancy – students will not be permitted to stay overnight.

If you are experiencing any symptoms, including fever, cough, and/or difficulty breathing or in the last 14 days you have been in close contact with a person known to have COVID-19, DO NOT return to campus. Email Campus Housing at housing@cofc.edu and we will coordinate with you directly.

What if I would like to pack and store or ship my belongings?

Campus Housing has coordinated with a local, alumni-owned packing and storage company, STASH, to provide you an additional option for getting your belongings. Please see the What if I choose to use STASH to pack and store my belongings? entry for more information.

What if I choose to use STASH to pack and store or ship my belongings?
If you choose this option, STASH can pack up your room and then either store items for you to retrieve at your convenience or deliver them to you anywhere in the Charleston Tri-County Area. Students will be directly responsible for the cost of packing and storage, but this option gives you the flexibility to get your belongings when it works for you, regardless of when the residence halls are open. Additionally, items can be shipped to you through STASH at current market rates and delivery timeframes. Please see below for estimated rates.
You are not obligated to choose this option. Your belongings remain secured within the residence halls and houses if this storage solution does not work for you.

If you’d like to move forward with using STASH, go to the Contact Us section of the STASH website, stashstorage.com/contact. STASH will work with Campus Housing to ensure that they access the correct room and you get checked out of your residence hall properly.

You will also be required to complete a College of Charleston waiver before STASH can access your room. To access the waiver, please log into MyCharleston and click on the MyHousing/Dining tab in the top right corner. Inside the portal, click on “Moving Items Out” at the top of the page, select the completed application (either 2019-2020 or Spring 2020) and follow the instructions to agree to the waiver.

STASH ESTIMATE
Based on providing packing, storing and delivery in the Charleston Tri-County Area for 100+ students last year, STASH has estimated $500-600 for the contents of a typical residence hall room (10-13 boxes) for four months. They will be able to provide more information once you contact them.
PACKING
$65 packing fee per student
STORAGE
$12/per box /per month- 4 cubic foot box
$0.75 per cubic foot (additional items that may not fit in boxes)
SHIPPING
$35 handling fee (shipping preparation)
Shipping costs based off weight/destination. STASH will not mark up costs of shipment but simply warehouse, prepare and facilitate shipment prior.

I am unable to get to campus during any of the currently scheduled move-out times. Is there another way for me to retrieve my personal belongings and check out of the residence halls and houses?

Campus Housing has coordinated with a local, alumni-owned packing and storage company, STASH, to provide you an additional option for getting your belongings. Please see the What if I choose to use STASH to pack and store my belongings entry for more information.

Please email housing@cofc.edu from your College of Charleston student email address if you need to discuss additional options.

What about storing my belongings?
For students who have been unable to get to campus during any of the previous or currently scheduled move-out times, we want to assure you that your belongings are secured within the residence halls and houses.
Additionally, Campus Housing has coordinated with a local, alumni-owned packing and storage company, STASH, to provide you an additional option for getting your belongings. Please see the What if I choose to use STASH to pack and store my belongings entry for more information.

How do I forward my student mail?
Please complete the following survey to forward your student mail.

Will I get a refund on my housing, meal plan and parking?
Please see the following statement.

I couldn’t get back to campus during the initial move-out period of March 20-23 and have perishables and trash in my room.

College of Charleston staff has accessed your room to remove perishable food items and trash.

I’ve already moved out, but how do I know if I checked out correctly?
If you have already moved out and you are unsure if you have properly checked out, please email housing@cofc.edu to let us know. If you still have your key, you can mail it to us at the below address.

Mail to:
College of Charleston
Campus Housing
66 George St.
Charleston, SC 29424

What do I do with my key if I have already moved out and did not return it?
Please include your name, CWID, and residence hall room with the key. Please mail key(s) in a bubble-wrap or similar envelope to ensure the envelope does not tear through mail processing.

Mail to:
College of Charleston
Campus Housing
66 George St.
Charleston, SC 29424

The Career Center is fully online and here to help you with your job search! Students may schedule appointments with our staff to be held via email, phone, or Zoom. Any career-related questions, as well as resumes or cover letters that you would like us to review, can be emailed to careercenter@cofc.edu.

Please have your student reach out to the Center for Student Learning: cslstud@cofc.edu.

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Questions about services for Employees

CARTA Updates

As of May 20, 2020, all CARTA Express buses are operating on a normal schedule. Employees who ride other CARTA buses should visit ridecarta.com to see if their normal route is currently running on a modified schedule.

CARTA’s COVID-19 policies can be found at ridecarta.com/coronavirus/ and ridecarta.com/returntofullservice. Riders are required to wear masks or face coverings on all routes. CARTA is distributing masks and hand sanitizer to anyone without them. Riders are encouraged to maintain social distancing among themselves and the bus driver. Regardless of CARTA policy, we are encouraging College of Charleston employees to adhere to the same safety protocols they will be following on campus.

CARTA has assured us that staying on top of capacity levels will be key moving forward and is a top priority for its operations and planning staff. If you find this to not be the case, please relay any concerns to Parking Services at parkingservices@cofc.edu so that we can communicate with CARTA. Additionally, If for any reason you no longer feel safe riding the bus to work, please email Parking Services to explore parking permit options.

 

As the College moves toward reopening as per President Hsu’s Return-to-Work Plan, the Office of Parking Services is implementing a corresponding phased plan for parking, as follows:

PHASE 1: Starting May 26

  • The Return-to-Work Phase 1 implementation date is Tuesday, May 26, 2020.
  • B Lot and WA Lot: The gates will be lowered at these two surface lots. Any vehicle not belonging to B Lot or WA Lot permit holders must be removed prior to 8:00 a.m. Tuesday, May 26.
  • PG Garage: The entrance and exit gates will remain open through Phase 1.
  • Student surface lots will not be ticketed until the first day of fall classes. However, these lots will be used for residence hall move-in. If you are using a student lot, please watch your College email for announcements concerning closures.
  • Employee surface lots (excluding B and WA Lots) will not be ticketed through Phase 1.
  • Parking permit fees will not be reinstated until Phase 3.

Parking Services will provide further details regarding parking during Phases 2 and 3 once those dates are announced.


2020-2021 Permit Applications:

We will be sending out details about the 2020-2021 employee permit application process in June. Please monitor your CofC email for that information.

If you have any questions, please direct them to parkingservices@cofc.edu.

Cloth face maks will be made available to the campus community. Central Stores will also have cleaning supplies and wipes.

Employees in high-risk categories remain strongly encouraged to continue working remotely to the extent possible. These categories include:

  • Older adults (aged 65 years and older)
  • People with HIV
  • Asthma (moderate-to-severe)
  • Chronic lung disease
  • Diabetes
  • Serious heart conditions
  • Chronic kidney disease being treated with dialysis
  • Severe obesity
  • Being im

President Hsu announced that the College is initiating its Return-to-Work Plan, a multi-phased approach for our campus to slowly, methodically and safely begin its path back to “normal” operations.

Just to be clear, during Phase One, the vast majority of our employees will continue to work remotely.

In order for the campus to be successful, we will have to practice safety collectively. Our desire to reopen campus to our students in the fall is contingent on our entire campus community’s ability to be disciplined in following safety and health procedures as outlined here – and that doesn’t even factor in state and federal restrictions if pandemic numbers spike in the coming weeks and/or months.

 

We are currently looking into the test MUSC is offering and will decide if this is an appropriate test for our faculty, staff and students on campus.

As part of the CARES Act (Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security) funding, DSS is offering child care assistance for parents who have been deemed essential staff and are required to report to work during the COVID-19 Pandemic. 

In order to qualify, you must be currently working at an essential business or government agency, you must need child care so you may continue to work, and you must complete a child care application. You do not have to meet any income guidelines for this time-limited program. A list of essential staff/qualifying occupations is attached. 

If you have questions about the voucher or whether you meet the criteria for assistance, please contact Christi Jeffcoat at (803) 898-2741 or christi.jeffcoat@dss.sc.gov. 

To apply, please complete the attached application and email it to christi.jeffcoat@dss.sc.gov. In the email, please include your first and last name, the best phone number to reach you, and the occupation/business where you work. 

If you need help finding available child care, please contact our Child Care Resource & Referral Network at (888) 335-1002 or go to the website after hours at www.sc-ccrr.org and submit a referral indicating your need to find an opening in a child care facility and someone will assist you. 

For more information about DSS’ response to COVID-19 related to child care, please visit our child care website at www.scchildcare.org. COVID-19 Child Care Assistance for Essential Workers Frequently Asked Questions April 20, 2020 

1. How do I get help with child care? 

In order to qualify, you must be currently working at an essential business or government agency, you must need child care so you may continue to work, and you must complete a child care application. You do not have to meet any income guidelines for this time-limited program. A list of essential staff/qualifying occupations is attached. 

To apply, please complete the attached application and email it to christi.jeffcoat@dss.sc.gov. In the email, please include your first and last name, the best phone number to reach you, and the occupation/business where you work. 

2. How does this program work? 

If a parent qualifies, vouchers will be paid directly to the child care providers. The SC Voucher system has a maximum weekly provider rate that can be paid. Providers that are in the ABC Quality program already have an established weekly rate based on their quality level. DSS will not charge a weekly co-pay per child, however parents may be asked to pay for the difference between what the child care provider charges and the voucher rate. 

3. Does the child care provider have to be licensed for the parents to receive the vouchers? 

All license-exempt child care programs operating during this time of COVID-19 Emergency and serving children all day, must have an emergency temporary license to operate. Please contact Child Care Licensing at (803) 898-9020 or email Cynthia Lara at cynthia.lara@dss.sc.gov to start this process. License-exempt providers that have received a temporary license to operate during this time of emergency are able to receive vouchers for eligible children. 

4. Where can I find a list of essential employees that would be covered by this? 

Please see the attached list of essential staff by occupation. 

5. Will this cover payments for child care when the facility is closed but parents are essential and still have to work? 

The purpose of this program is to provide child care assistance to essential workers so that they are able to place their kids in child care while they report to work during the COVID-19 emergency. If a parent’s child care provider is closed and they need to choose another provider so they can continue to report to work, they can apply for this category of child care. 

6. How long will the voucher cover? 

This category of child care is being provided from the point of approval through August 30, 2020. 

7. How will parents be compensated if they have already paid for child care directly to the provider? 

This category of child care is not retroactive. DSS will pay from the point of approval through August 30, 2020. COVID-19 Child Care Assistance for Essential Workers Frequently Asked Questions April 20, 2020.

 The COVID-19 pandemic has uprooted every person’s routine and introduced mandatory stay-at-home orders and quarantines. You may find yourself confined to your home with your partner for an extended and indefinite amount of time. With such a major shift in your daily dynamics, you may start feeling a wide range of emotions –annoyance, frustration, boredom, sadness, or anxiousness–and these emotions can impact your relationship. Below are a few tips to help couples work together through this pandemic. 

Read more here.

Listed below are online resources with information on the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) outbreak and prevention, as well as advice on how to talk to children about it. To access the websites, please click on the links below.

Read more here.

 Many parents are facing changing roles and responsibilities and are trying to navigate the new demands faced, particularly in accommodating childcare, home schooling and still fulfilling work responsibilities. This session will provide advice on how to successfully juggle the demands faced and meet the changing needs within the home. 

To view this recording, please click on the session from the selections and register: Here

Join us for a free benefit from your Employee Support Program to help you and your family stay well and well balanced 

From April 22-24, employees can access a series of live, web-based sessions facilitated by an Aware specialist, and engage in 10-minute mindfulness exercises that will help you focus, release tension, and reset for improved wellbeing. 

Find the schedule here.

Seniors age 65 and older have witnessed a lot of historical events—man walking on the moon, the construction and destruction of the Berlin Wall, and the invention of color television. However, they haven’t seen anything quite like COVID-19. The coronavirus pandemic is of particular concern to seniors because they are at a higher risk for severe illness if infected. 

Read more here.

The isolation you experience from quarantine and mandatory stay-at-home orders can be a major source of anxiety. A global pandemic is a stressful event for everyone and may leave you feeling unbalanced. Even if you do not normally feel anxious, you may be experiencing anxiety due to the current situation and that’s OK. It is completely normal to be worried right now. Below are some tips to help you manage your anxiety about COVID-19. 

Read more here.

 Schools and many child care providers are currently closed for an extended period of time. Those who can are staying home to help slow the spread of COVID-19. This has created a challenge for parents who are now at home with their kids. So, what should you do while you and your kids are stuck at home? How do you deal with cabin fever and the loss of learning while kids are out of school? Below are tips that may help you through this adjustment. 

Read more here.

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Questions about CofC’s Response and Cases on Campus

The College is not considering lay-offs, furloughs or pay reductions as an option at this time. The President and Board of Trustees are committed to protecting employees and reserving these actions as a last resort. However, there is a need for belt tightening, and the College has put a freeze on most new hires until July 1st, and is taking other efforts to manage the budget.

On March 18, 2020, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA or Act) was signed into law. The FFCRA contains two different paid leave types that apply to both permanent and temporary employees at the College of Charleston who are not able to work (on campus or remotely) due to the COVID-19 response. Affected employees who are not able to work and would like to apply for this leave need to submit an application. The application link and additional details are available at https://emergency.cofc.edu/families-first-coronavirus-response-act-employee-guidance/

The College of Charleston has encouraged private apartment operators and landlords to work with students and families regarding their leases during the COVID-19 pandemic. However, the College does not have any contractual or legal authority over these private entities. Students who have off-campus leases should contact their landlords if they have any questions about their leases.

On March 31, President Andrew Hsu sent a letter to the operators of student apartments and asked that they consider providing rent abatements or payment options to reduce the burden on families and students during this difficult time.

President Andrew Hsu sent the following message to the campus community on March 25, 2020:

Dear Campus Community:

As you know, the College announced last night via our Cougar Alert system that we have a confirmed case of COVID-19 in a member of our campus community. Our Office of Student Health Services has been in contact with this individual, and we are confident that all appropriate self-isolation measures have been taken.

Our investigation determined that this individual was last present on campus on March 9. At that time, this person was not ill. The person did not develop symptoms until much later. The College of Charleston has consulted with the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) and has determined that, given the course of the individual’s illness, this person posed no threat of infection while on campus.

Going forward, the College has adopted the following guideline: Due to the rapidly evolving nature of the pandemic and the unique circumstances surrounding each case and its verification, the College will not be able to reliably report on all cases in those affiliated with the College. As such, the College does not intend to publicly announce each additional case unless it involves a DHEC-validated case in a member of the campus community who was on campus at a time or for a duration that would require the individual notification of affected persons.

Sincerely,

Andrew

 

Andrew T. Hsu, Ph.D.

President

The College of Charleston continues to closely monitor the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic for its ongoing and potential impacts on our university community. The health and safety of our university community is our top priority, and we are taking appropriate actions to support our students in the United States and overseas.

The College was made aware on March 24, 2020, that one of our employees tested positive for COVID-19. University officials have taken appropriate measures to ensure the health and safety of the campus community. Our investigation determined that this individual was last present on campus on March 9. At that time, this person was not ill. The person did not develop symptoms until much later. The College has consulted with the S.C. Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) and has determined that, given the course of the individual’s illness, this person posed no threat of infection while on campus.

In addition, the College has also learned of other potential unconfirmed cases among members of the campus community and continues to investigate if and/or when any of these individuals were last on campus. Appropriate actions will be taken as soon as more information becomes available.

Due to the rapidly evolving nature of the pandemic and the unique circumstances surrounding each case and its verification, the College will not be able to reliably report on all cases in those affiliated with the College. As such, the College does not intend to publicly announce each additional case unless it involves a DHEC-validated case in a member of the campus community who was on campus at a time or for a duration that would require the individual notification of affected persons.

For the latest information on the presence of coronavirus in South Carolina, visit the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control.

On March 19, 2020, President Hsu announced the extension of the e-learning period through the end of the spring semester. 

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Additional Resources

  • Have a question or concern about the College’s response to COVID-19? Please send it to covid19@cofc.edu
  • The DHEC Care Line is available to provide general information about COVID-19 by calling 1-855-472-3432 from 8 a.m.-6 p.m. seven days a week. The Care Line hours are extend to 9 p.m. tonight. Because call volume has been high, callers are urged to be patient if they receive a busy signal and try their call at a later time.
  • To learn the latest from the CDC on the COVID-19, visit the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) FAQ page.