Title
COVID-19 Mitigation Policies

STAC’s number one priority is the safety of all members of our community. The College will continue to provide a safe and secure learning, working, and living environment for our students, employees, and visitors.

Please note that the following policies are subject to change based on COVID-19 conditions at the College and in the surrounding community.


STAC's COVID-19 Mitigation Policies for Fall 2021

Vaccination
STAC requires all members of the College community to become vaccinated, unless an individual’s personal medical condition or religious beliefs compel otherwise. We will continue to offer vaccination clinics on campus periodically. Fully and partially vaccinated individuals must submit COVID Vaccine Documentation at www.stac.edu/COVIDAny individual who would like to request a medical or religious exemption, please read our COVID-19 Vaccination Exemption Fact Sheet at www.stac.edu/exemption and fill out your applicable form.

Fully vaccinated is considered 14 days after receiving the 2nd shot of Pfizer or Moderna or 14 days after receiving the single dose of the J&J vaccine.  

Notes for individuals who are not fully vaccinated:


Pre-Arrival Requirements
All members of the STAC community will be required to demonstrate proof of full COVID-19 vaccination OR a negative PCR test taken within the 5 days prior to first arrival on campus. 


Check-In Process:


Testing for Not Fully Vaccinated Individuals:

Testing for Fully Vaccinated Individuals:


Employees: If any employee is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms (see below), they should contact their primary health physician to describe their symptoms and discuss whether a PCR COVID-19 test should be administered. This test would be provided through their own provider. If positive, please contact either Health Services at [email protected] or Human Resources at [email protected](If employees are determined to be close contacts through STAC contact tracing, a test will be provided by STAC through Vault.) 

People with COVID-19 have had a wide range of symptoms reported – ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. Anyone can have mild to severe symptoms. People with these symptoms* may have COVID-19:

  • Fever or chills
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea


*This list does not include all possible symptoms.


Quarantine and Isolation
Individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19, are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, have come into close contact with an individual who is COVID+, or who have come into close contact* with an individual who is under investigation** by contact tracing at the College, will need to follow specific isolation and quarantine guidelines, which are outlined below. Contact tracers and/or Health Services will dictate and explain the proper course of action.

*Close Contact is defined as being within 6 feet of a COVID+ individual for a total of 15 minutes or more within 2 days prior to illness onset, regardless of whether the contact was wearing a mask. 

**Persons Under Investigation (PUIs) are those who are symptomatic but have not yet been determined to be COVID+. Our campus uses this designation to keep ahead of potential transmission of COVID-19.

Positive Test Result:
Fully Vaccinated: Isolation 10 days. Must have medical clearance from Primary Medical Care Provider or Campus Health Remote Medical Visit (students only) to return to campus.
Unvaccinated: Isolation 10 days. Must have medical clearance from Primary Medical Care Provider or Campus Health Remote Medical Visit (students only) to return to campus.

Symptomatic PUI:
Fully Vaccinated: Isolation until test results are received. If positive, follow the procedure above. If negative, can be cleared.
Unvaccinated: Isolation until test results are received. If positive, follow the procedure above. If negative, can be cleared.

Close Contact with COVID+ Individual:
Fully VaccinatedNo Quarantine. Must test 3-5 days after exposure and wear a mask in public settings for 14 days, or until receipt of a negative result. Should isolate if they test positive. Students - test provided by STAC through Vault. Employees - test provided through their own provider; if employees are determined to be close contacts through STAC contact tracing, the test will be provided by STAC through Vault.
UnvaccinatedMust quarantine for 10 days. Must test 3-5 days after exposure. Must have a negative test and be asymptomatic prior to return to normal campus activities. Should isolate if they test positive. Students - test provided by STAC through Vault. Employees - test provided through their own provider; if employees are determined to be close contacts through STAC contact tracing, the test will be provided by STAC through Vault.

Close Contact with PUI:
Fully Vaccinated: No quarantine unless symptomatic, or PUI is determined to be COVID+.
Unvaccinated: No quarantine unless symptomatic, or PUI is determined to be COVID+.


Campus Cleaning Protocols: The Facilities Management team, in cooperation with the College’s Cleaning Services provider, Aramark, has adopted cleaning and disinfection protocols that comply with guidelines from the CDC for preventing the spread of SARS-CoV-2, CDC Cleaning and Disinfecting Protocols.

For cleaning schedules, see the Aramark Scope of Work Sheet. Cleaning and custodial staff have increased the frequency of cleaning and disinfection activities (deep-cleaning) across campus. 

In addition to the above cleaning, if a person is suspected or confirmed of having COVID-19, STAC Custodial Services has developed a cleaning plan in compliance with CDC Considerations for Higher Education for cleaning after such person has been identified.

St. Thomas Aquinas College has placed hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes throughout the campus to enhance cleanliness and reduce the spread of COVID-19.

Academic Areas: 
Disinfection of academic areas will be increased in frequency for all bathrooms, elevators, and major touchpoints throughout all shifts. Classrooms have disinfectant wipes and hand sanitizer stations available in each room for students to wipe desk surfaces before and after classes. 

Student Life Areas:
Romano Student Alumni Center: Cleaning and sanitizing of the Romano Student Alumni Center has been increased in frequency for all bathrooms and major touchpoints throughout all shifts. Custodial staff will follow the deep-cleaning protocol for cleaning and disinfection following group activities. Wipes and hand sanitizer are available throughout the building. In addition, this space will utilize ultraviolet light sanitizers. 

Residence Halls:
Disinfection will be increased in frequency for all major touchpoints outside of “Family Residence” areas throughout all shifts. Custodial staff will not enter residence halls. Residents are responsible for cleaning the inside of units. STAC will provide disinfectant materials for inside the residence rooms. 

Recreation/Athletic Areas: All recreation and athletic areas will undergo cleaning in accordance with the Aramark Scope of Work throughout the day. This may impact the hours of operation. Wipes and hand sanitizer are available throughout the building. In addition, this space will utilize ultraviolet light sanitizers. 

College Offices: Disinfection will be increased in frequency for all bathrooms, elevators, and major touchpoints throughout all shifts. 

Campus Safety: The following equipment will be available in the middle office and to be used as needed:


At the start of each shift:
Offices: Using spray and wipes provided by Aramark or Alcohol Wipes to wipe down frequently touched and used surfaces.
Vehicles: Using spray and wipes provided by Aramark or Alcohol Wipes to wipe down steering wheels, consoles, dashboards, and frequently touched and used surfaces. Additionally, seats will be sprayed.

During the shift - ongoing:
Offices: Periodically wipe down frequently touched and used surfaces.
Vehicles: When changing drivers, the inside of the vehicle will be cleaned as if it were the start of a shift.



These purification units have been installed throughout our College campus.


Mask Wearing
Rockland County has been designated by the CDC as having a high level of community transmission of the COVID-19 virus and emerging Delta variant. Based on the CDC designation and in accordance with CDC guidance, the College requires all members of the STAC Community to wear a mask in public indoor spaces, including classrooms, hallways, stairwells, elevators, shared offices, restrooms, the Fitness Center/Gym and other shared spaces. Individuals do not need to wear a mask when in their own family residence unit on campus or alone in a private office or workspace but should put on their mask if someone enters that space, preferably before the other person enters. Masks are not required to be worn outdoors, unless you cannot maintain six feet of physical distance or are in a crowded area.

Acceptable face masks are ones that cover both your nose and mouth, fit snugly to the face, and do not have a valve. Gaiters and bandanas are not acceptable substitutes for face masks. We recommend masks with multiple layers, and also with a pocket for an extra filter for added protection. 

Please use good mask etiquette! Use a clean mask every day. If using a disposable mask, it can be reused after 72 hours without cleaning. If using a reusable mask, please wash with soap and water and allow to dry completely before reuse. Only handle your mask by the straps, and avoid touching your mask with your hands. If you do, wash or sanitize your hands.


  1. Follow quarantine and isolation guidelines. Do not come to campus or leave your residence hall if you have recently tested positive for COVID-19, have recently come in contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 (and you are unvaccinated against COVID-19), have been told to quarantine as a result of contact tracing, or you feel ill. You can return once you have been cleared by STAC Health Services. If you have been cleared by your own primary care physician or by STAC Telehealth, documentation must be sent to STAC Health Services ([email protected]) stating that you are cleared to return to campus/class.
     
  2. Wear face masks. All members of the STAC community, regardless of vaccination status, are currently required to wear face masks while in public spaces, including classrooms, hallways, the library, and any other shared spaces. Your mask should cover your mouth and nose, and should not be removed while in class for any reason. Please be aware that this policy may change according to CDC guidance and local health and safety conditions.
     
  3. Sit in the same seat every class. For contact tracing purposes, students will need to sit in the same seat every class.
     
  4. Maintain physical distancing where possible. All students, faculty, and staff should maintain 3-6 feet of physical distance where possible. However, realistically there will be classroom spaces where this is not always possible. Classroom capacities have been managed to allow for the greatest degree of distancing possible.
     
  5. Minimize shared equipment. Individuals should avoid sharing equipment where possible. However, if equipment does need to be shared, please wipe it down with provided disinfecting wipes in between users and maintain physical distancing as much as possible.
     
  6. Do not eat or drink in the classroom. Individuals should avoid eating and drinking in classroom spaces, unless they have a documented accommodation.
     
  7. Disinfect your classroom space. Students and faculty are encouraged to disinfect areas within their workspaces by cleaning these at the beginning and end of each class. This includes desktops, seats, and equipment used during class. Disinfectant supplies will be provided.
     
  8. Practice good hand hygiene. Individuals should wash their hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds as often as possible or use personal hand sanitizers. Hand sanitizer stations are available throughout the campus.
     
  9. Respect each other. Express concern for each other’s health and safety, and remember that this is a stressful time for everyone. Do not make judgments about people depending on their vaccination status, and do not treat people differently because they are or are not vaccinated. STAC cherishes its reputation as a warm and welcoming community; we are justifiably proud of our tradition of acceptance and tolerance. COVID has increased the overall anxiety level, and we need to make sure that we maintain our commitment to being a caring campus. Failure to comply with these health and safety protocols will be handled according to the College's Disruptive Student Policy.
     

Campus Events and Activities
Mask Wearing- Mask-wearing policies at events and during transportation to and from events will be consistent with the College-wide mask policy.

On-Campus Events- Fully vaccinated individuals can attend all on-campus events, following College-wide COVID-19 safety protocols. Not fully vaccinated individuals can attend outdoor events, and some indoor events, depending on the approval of the Director of Student Engagement.

Off-Campus Events- All students must be fully vaccinated to attend Off-Campus Events.

Student-Run Events- Any student-run events must be approved by the Director of Student Engagement and must follow rules set forth by the Department of Student Engagement regarding fully vaccinated and not fully vaccinated attendees. Clubs can reserve space and host an event on campus.


Athletics
St. Thomas Aquinas College is requiring the COVID-19 vaccination for all students and employees. All protocols and procedures are in accordance with NYS guidelines, NCAA guidelines and institutional policy. Guidance is subject to change based on changes made by these or other local authorities.

Arrival to Campus
All not fully vaccinated students must supply negative results from a PCR COVID-19 test taken within 5 days of arriving on campus for the first time in accordance with College policy.

Institutional quarantine/testing plan in effect for all international students arriving in the USA in accordance with the CDC International Travel Policy.

Mask Policy
Masks are NOT required during practice/competition.

Masks ARE required for all team travel by all members of the travel party.

Masks are to be worn by all students/staff at all other times while indoors on campus. Please note, this is subject to change for vaccinated students/staff based on local conditions, CDC recommendations, and College policy. See above section 8 for the College’s Mask Wearing policy.

Testing Protocols
All not fully vaccinated student-athletes, coaches, and administrators will be tested weekly during the non-championship segments of the season and weekly (at a minimum) within 3 days of the first competition of each week during the championship segment of the season.

Fully vaccinated individuals, including student-athletes, coaches and administrators will be exempt from mandated COVID-19 surveillance testing for athletics unless they become symptomatic or if local/campus conditions call for more stringent testing.

Travel Policy
Masks are required at all times during transportation.


Visiting Team Policy
Schools will adhere to the NCAA’s COVID-19 management and testing considerations for Tier 1 individuals. All opponents must adhere to the NCAA guidelines at a minimum.


Spectator Policy
Spectators will be permitted at outdoor athletic events.


More information to follow for indoor events.

Athletic Workout Guidelines (Mandated at all athletic facilities)

 
Athletic Facilities


Kraus Fitness Center

  • Masks must be worn at all times.
  • Only vaccinated students and staff are permitted to use the Fitness Center for the first two weeks of the semester. Conditions will be re-evaluated at that point.
  • Athletic teams will have planned access to the Fitness Center for team activities.
  • Hand sanitizer and sanitizing wipe dispensers added in multiple locations. 
  • All users are responsible for wiping down all equipment after each use; Virex spray is available in addition to wipes.
  • UVC Lights used to sanitize areas every night.


Aquinas Gymnasium


Riley Family Tennis Courts


Athletic Training Room (ATR)


Student-Athlete/Staff Member Exhibiting Symptoms

 
Student-Athlete/Staff COVID-19 Positive Test Result

 
Return to Play Following COVID-19 Positive Test Result