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Coronavirus Campus Communication 12/14/2021

To: Students, Faculty and Staff
Date: December 14, 2021
Re: Campus Communication on Coronavirus

As per requirements issued by the US Department of Education, Ramapo College is required to notify the community in the event of a COVID-19 outbreak.  According to the New Jersey Department of Health, an outbreak in the higher education setting is defined as 3 or more laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 cases among students or staff within a 14-day period, who are epidemiologically linked, meet criteria for higher education-associated cases, and were not identified as close contacts of each other outside of the college setting during standard case investigation or contact tracing.

On the evening of December 13, 2021, a student with COVID-19 symptoms made contact with Public Safety and a case investigation ensued. Eleven (11) students, who are associated with a social gathering in a Pine Hall residence room believed to have occured on the evening of December 10, 2021, have been confirmed positive for COVID-19 or are being regarded as presumptive positives.  Six (6) of the students are isolating on campus and five (5) are isolating off campus. The College’s Contact Tracing Unit is in the process of notifying the close contacts and providing them with the necessary health and safety requirements detailed by the College.  If you attended a social gathering in a Pine Hall residence room from December 10-11, 2021, please make contact with Health Services at 201-684-7536.

The College consults with public health officials from the North West Bergen Regional Health Commission about confirmed positive Covid cases on campus and strictly follows their guidance and recommendations.

How to Protect Yourself and Others

Make it a point to review prevention information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on a daily basis. Below is a summary of prevention steps, but please access the CDC site for the comprehensive information about prevention.

  • Get vaccinated. Authorized COVID-19 vaccines and boosters can help protect you from COVID-19.  The College recently announced new opportunities for appointments at its on campus clinic;

  • Follow the College’s Face Covering Policy;

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick. Unvaccinated individuals are required to maintain 6 feet of social distance from others when practical;

  • Avoid crowds and poorly ventilated spaces. Resident students are reminded of the social gathering policy and not to exceed occupancy limits;

  • Wash your hands often. Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place, or after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. If soap and water are not available, you can use a hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands;

  • For students who are currently living on campus, as a reminder, the Guest and Visitation Policy can be found here. Others are welcome to host visitors, but all visitors are required to wear a face covering;

  • Stay home if you are sick (except to get medical care). Do not, under any circumstances, come to the campus if you are sick.  Follow directions for reporting to college officials if you are diagnosed with having COVID-19, had an exposure or are experiencing symptoms;

  • Always cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue (and throw it away) or sneeze into the inside of your elbow. Immediately wash your hands for 20 seconds with soap and water (or use a hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol);

  • Clean and disinfect frequently-touched surfaces; and

  • Always monitor your health via the College’s Daily Symptom Self Screening for Students, Faculty, and Staff and be alert for symptoms of COVID-19.

For additional information related to the College’s response to COVID-19 and campus dashboards, please access COVID-19 Information and Updates.  As COVID-19 cases rise across the U.S, it is important that you take responsibility for your health and remain vigilant toward slowing the spread.