Williamson College of the Trades – COVID-19 Information
Last Updated: 1/15/2021
Daily Health Screens Administered*
(Faculty/Staff & Students)
Active Positive COVID-19 Cases
Change from Previous Day
(*Average number of health screens conducted daily during in-person instruction, Sunday through Friday each week)
COVID-19, emerging in 2019, has led to an unprecedented impact to all elements of our daily lives. While the pandemic and preventative measures will continue to evolve throughout the next academic year, Williamson’s top priority is keeping our community safe. The college will continue to work alongside its local, state, and federal partners to safely conduct campus operations. We look forward to working with all members of the college community to make this coming year a memorable, safe, and successful one.
We ask all members of the college community to understand that information and guidance outlined within this Health Plan may change based on the spread of the virus, the advice of public health experts, or by order of the Pennsylvania Department of Health. The college will continue to evaluate all measures and strategies to safeguard its students and the entire Williamson community. More information can be found in the sections below.
Pennsylvania State Recovery Phase: GREEN
Delaware County Recovery Phase: GREEN
Williamson College of the Trades Recovery Phase: GREEN
Public Health Measures
(As of Monday, September 21, 2020, 3:30pm)
Every student, faculty and staff member at Williamson this fall will be required to comply with the following measures designed to keep members of college community safe.
- Masks (no neck gaiters or bandanas) will be required across campus, to include all common spaces, classrooms, dormitories (excluding individual rooms), meeting rooms, and shop areas.
- All students, faculty, and staff will receive personal protective equipment, including masks, and will use hand sanitizing stations located across campus. Additional social distance measures, such as plastic partitions and signage have been added across campus. The college will be providing additional training and presentations during student fall orientation and faculty/staff in-service sessions.
- In an effort to maximize social distancing, student travel off-campus will be limited during the school week.
- Libraries, student lounges (excluding the Rowan Hall Student Lounge), study rooms, athletic facilities, and other common areas will be open, however the number of occupants will be limited to support social distancing measures.
- The dining schedule and operational protocols have been modified to maximize safety and social distancing measures. Plastic plates and utensils will be used for all meals.
- The college will enhance its cleaning schedule of all campus facilities, including dormitories, common areas, classrooms, and shop areas.
- Facility heating, ventilating, and air-conditioning (HVAC) system filter replacement schedule has been increased. MERV 13 filters will be used throughout campus in alignment with CDC, American Society of Heating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHAE), and the National Air Filtration Association (NAFA) recommendations.
- Additional measures include modifications to the college academic schedule, activities and events, limitations to off-campus field trips and travel, and a reduction to campus visitations, all designed to maximize social distancing practices.
COVID-19 Test & Screening Protocol
(As of Tuesday, December 8, 2020, 1:00pm)
In alignment with Pennsylvania Department of Health and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines, the college has developed a comprehensive testing program.
- All students, faculty, and staff will receive a COVID-19 baseline test at the start of the fall and spring terms. The college will provide this test at no cost to the individual. Test details will be mailed to all students, faculty, and staff. The college will be supplementing its viral testing protocol with Health Screenings throughout the academic year.
- Williamson will continue to coordinate with local and state resources to test anyone who exhibits COVID-19 symptoms. The college will isolate and quarantine students testing positive or those awaiting test results if the student is unable to travel home. Williamson will continue to work with state and local government agencies for contact tracing and additional testing protocol.
Flu Shot/Immunization Policy for AY2020-21
(As of Tuesday, December 8, 2020, 1:00pm)
The COVID-19 pandemic has created unique dangers and requires significant additional safety precautions for our college, nation, and the world. Given the unique nature of the college’s trade and leadership curriculum, Williamson has pursued an in-person strategy this academic year. Williamson’s strategy is structured not only on a continual assessment of campus safety, but also on recommendations from the Center for Disease Control (CDC), the Pennsylvania Department of Health, and the college’s Main Line Health Infectious Disease and Medical team consultants. Given the complexities of how the COVID-19 pandemic will be impacted by the upcoming flu season, the CDC, PA Department of Health and Main Line Health are all recommending mandatory flu shots this year.
In the past, Williamson has recommended its faculty, staff and student receive flu shots as a voluntary preventive measure. As such, each fall the college has partnered with CVS to administer flu shots on campus to make it easier for individuals to receive a shot. However, given the current pandemic and recommendations from the CDC, PA Department of Health, and our medical consultants, Williamson, like many other colleges and businesses across the nation are mandating flu shots this year for all employees and students. Employees and students with a medical condition that precludes the administration of a flu shot, may submit documentation from a licensed physician stating the medical requirement for an exemption.
Hence, on September 29, 2020 in accordance with the college’s mandated decision, Williamson will be partnering again with CVS to provide flu shots to employees and students. Flu shots are typically covered by most insurance plans, however if a student’s plan does not cover flu shots, the college will cover the cost.
We understand and appreciate the gravity of this decision this year, however the college is taking this position with the health and safety of the entire college community in mind.
Williamson does not plan on mandating a COVID-19 vaccination (if introduced and available) this academic year; however, the college will continue to evaluate its immunization requirement for subsequent academic years in association with CDC, PA Department of Health, and medical consultant recommendations or policies.
(As of Tuesday, December 8, 2020, 1:00pm)
Given Williamson’s unique educational experience, all courses are planned at this time to be offered in-person during the fall and spring terms. However, the college remains prepared to quickly transition a specific course(s) or sections of a course(s) to a distance education format as conditions change.
- Masks (no neck gaiters or bandanas) will be required to be worn in all academic and shop classes.
- The college will limit class sizes below 30 participants, maximizing classroom social distancing between students when feasible. The college has increased its cleaning protocol for all classrooms. Hand sanitizers and cleaning supplies are available in each classroom.
- Given that technical shop courses are difficult to hold in a distance education format, the college will be adding evening class periods starting in the fall. Through frontloading additional shop periods, the college retains greater flexibility to adjust the fall term academic calendar, to include the option of transitioning to distance education if conditions warrant.
- The daily Academic Schedule has also been adjusted to accommodate social distancing practices, specifically in terms of daily activities, such as Chapel, Assemblies, and use of the Dining Facility.
2020-2021 Academic Calendar
(As of Friday, September 25, 2020, 12:00pm)
In developing the college’s reopening strategy, the administration explored a wide number of options given the uncertainty of the current pandemic. Our tiered strategy, continually informed and refined based on guidance from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), Pennsylvania Department of Health, and our Main Line Health Infectious Disease and Medical Consultants, has a number of potential options in regard to the fall academic calendar. One of the options centered on Thanksgiving and the return to in-person instruction following the holiday break.
As we started the fall term, the college scheduled evening shop classes to enable greater flexibility in the academic calendar. We discussed with the Faculty and Staff the various options over the summer stating that the college will likely make a decision by the end of September. After reviewing guidance from the CDC, PA Department of Health, and our Main Line Health consultants, the college has decided to alter the Fall 2020 academic calendar after Thanksgiving.
Following Thanksgiving break, the college will be shifting to a virtual schedule for the remainder of the fall term.
- In-person instruction on campus will conclude on November 24, 2020 with the start of the Thanksgiving holiday break
- Virtual instruction, will begin on December 1, 2020 after the Thanksgiving break
- Fall term finals scheduled for December 16-22 will be virtual
- The fall term will conclude as scheduled on December 22nd
The college is finalizing the virtual daily academic schedule beginning on December 1st, which will be released in the upcoming weeks. There will be additional guidance in terms of technology, administrative requirements over the winter break, etc. released later in the term.
The administration wanted to release this information as early as possible so that students and their families can plan accordingly.
The college appreciates the gravity of this decision, but we are making it with the safety of the entire college community in mind.
(As of Friday, January 15, 2021, 4:00pm)
In coordination with the National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) and the United States Collegiate Athletic Association (USCAA), Williamson has canceled all fall athletic programs.
*** NEW UPDATE ***
Similar to the fall term, Williamson has coordinated extensively with the United States Collegiate Athletic Association (USCAA) and the National Collegiate Wrestling Association (NCWA), the governing bodies for our Basketball and Wrestling programs. Based on extensive discussions and ongoing pandemic considerations, the college has made the decision to cancel its Basketball and Wrestling season for the 2020-2021 academic year. While the college is saddened by this decision, ultimately the safety of our students and the Williamson community remains our highest priority. All practices and competitions for the basketball and wrestling programs are officially canceled. Williamson will continue to work with the USCAA relative to our spring athletic programs and will release additional information when available.
The fall and spring term intramural program has been suspended to facilitate evening technical shop classes and provide additional shop opportunities for students.
The college will be instituting additional protocols within the athletic department to include:
- Masks and social distancing protocols are required at all times. This includes while exercising and conducting rehab work.
- The Athletic training staff will be outfitted with additional protective equipment and will be adjusting their office protocol in accordance with state and CDC recommendations.
- Established occupancy limits will be strictly enforced.
- Cardio area – 8 persons
- Weight Room – 6 persons
- Gymnasium Main Floor – 12 persons
- Upper Level Running Track – 5 persons
- Students will need to schedule a time slot (allotted in 40 min increments) for the indoor facility use. This will help ensure a more universal use of the facilities for all students. Students will be required to sign in upon entering Restall and will only be able to use the time that they have reserved.
- All gym participants must wipe down their equipment after use with provided disinfectant cleaning supplies. In between scheduled time slots, all weight and cardio equipment will be cleaned by staff.
- Water fountains will be turned off as there will be no school issued water bottles for usage. Gym occupants must bring their own water with them.
- Locker room, storage, and shower facilities are closed.
(As of Tuesday, December 8, 2020, 1:00pm)
In an effort to minimize the spread of the virus on to the campus, the college will significantly limit student travel off-campus during the academic week. Students returning each Sunday night will also undergo a health screening protocol.
- In compliance with CDC, PA State guidelines and recommendations, students will be assigned to double occupancy rooms by default, although the college may assign a student a single room, when available, due to any pre-existing medical condition. Residents will be assigned to specific bathroom areas.
- Masks (no neck gaiters or bandanas) will be worn at all times, except for roommates in individual dormitory rooms, and posted social distancing guidelines will apply in all common areas.
- Cleaning protocols have been increased in all campus facilities and hand sanitizer stations will be readily available throughout the college.
- The Director of Residence Life and individual Dormitory Managers will take an active role in ensuring the safety of each student dormitory. Dormitory Managers will routinely review health and safety protocols with their assigned student residents.
- The Rowan Hall Student lounge is closed until further notice.
Student Health Services
Serving as a focal point for testing and student health management, Student Health Services (SHS) will continue to offer a full range of services to students, through both in-person and virtual consultations. Students or employees who believe they have been exposed to, have contracted COVID-19, or are experiencing symptoms associated with the virus should contact Student Health Services immediately or their Dormitory Manager if after hours.
- It’s helpful to note that isolation and quarantine are different terms. Isolation refers to cases where an individual has a confirmed infection. Quarantine refers to situations where an individual has been potentially exposed but may or may not be infected. The college has set aside separate housing for both the isolation and quarantine of students who are unable to travel home.
- Students reporting COVID-19 symptoms or believe they have contracted the virus will be initially quarantined, then sent home awaiting the results of a COVID-19 test. Students unable to go home will be quarantined and transported to a local testing location. Students sent home may be provided a distance education kit containing a laptop and connection instructions prior to departure. SHS staff will remain in contact with the student throughout the process. If the initial COVID-19 test result is positive, the student must remain isolated in accordance with state and CDC guidance. If the initial test is negative, the SHS staff will work with the individual student to develop a return to campus plan. Students contracting the virus will require a negative viral test before returning to campus or leaving isolation.
- SHS Staff and college administration will notify and work with local and state agencies to conduct contact tracing. The college may require additional students or employees to quarantine awaiting the results of COVID-19 test as a result of contact tracing.
Clubs & Activities
Student clubs and extracurricular activities will be available in the fall; however, masks (no neck gaiters or bandanas) will be worn and social distancing protocol will be observed.
The college store will open in the fall; however occupancy limits will be enforced to facilitate social distancing protocol. Additional safeguards and protective shields will be in place to further protect the store staff. The store will be encouraging online sales and may curtail hours for events.
Prevention Information from the CDC
(As of Tuesday, December 8, 2020, 1:00pm)
The CDC and PA Department of Health recommend everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory diseases, including:
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
- Stay home when you are sick.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
- Follow the CDC’s recommendations for using a facemask.
- The CDC does not recommend that people who are well wear a facemask to protect themselves from respiratory diseases, including COVID-19.
- Facemasks should be used by people who show symptoms of COVID-19 to help prevent the spread of the disease to others. The use of facemasks is also crucial for health workers and people who are taking care of someone in close settings (at home or in a health care facility).
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
- If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
For information about handwashing, see CDC’s Handwashing website.
For information specific to healthcare, see CDC’s Hand Hygiene in Healthcare Settings.
These are everyday habits that can help prevent the spread of several viruses. CDC does have specific guidance for travelers.
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Resources