Answers to Your Top 5 Questions

Dear Kent State University Students, Faculty and Staff,

We have entered our first full week of classes, and many of you have reached out with excellent questions about life on campus as we work to limit the spread of the virus in our community. Below you will find answers to the top 5 most frequently asked questions. Please review this information carefully to protect yourself, your friends and our entire Flashes family.

Top 5 Most Frequently Asked Questions

#1 Q: When should I stay at home with symptoms?

A: If you have even one COVID-19 symptom, you should stay home for 10 days or until your symptoms improve, and seek medical services if symptoms persist or worsen. Even if the symptoms seem to be related to another ailment, such as seasonal allergies, it is vital to err on the side of caution and stay home. No one symptom is more likely to predict the COVID-19 virus than another.

If you are concerned you may have COVID-19 or have been in contact with someone who has the virus, you should refer to the COVID Response Team Guidance for details on what to do and how to proceed. Tests are available for those who think they may have contracted the virus.

All members of the university community must self-monitor daily for symptoms. COVID-19 symptoms include cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fever, chills, muscle pain, sore throat or a new loss of taste or smell. Other less common symptoms have been reported, including gastrointestinal symptoms like nausea, vomiting or diarrhea.

#2 Q: Do I have to wear a face covering outdoors?

A: Yes, face coverings are required in all group or public settings on campus. Face coverings should always be worn when walking in high-density areas across campus and in downtown Kent. They can be removed when alone or with a family member or household member (roommate) in a green space. When at an outdoor gathering, wear a face covering and be sure to keep the gatherings small (10 or fewer people) and keep physical distance (6 feet).

Your face covering should always be readily available in case you come in close contact with others. The use of face coverings on campuses is our first and best line of defense against the spread of COVID-19 and is a central component of our Flashes Safe Seven principles.

Please follow the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines on appropriate face coverings. Per the CDC, bandanas are not suitable face coverings as they are too thin and too loose to provide the needed protection.

If you are concerned about wearing a face covering, please submit a Pandemic Adjustment Request Accommodation Form for fall 2020.

#3 Q: Where can I eat or dine on campus?

A: If you pack a lunch or bring food onto campus, please eat in designated dining areas throughout campus or, if weather allows, outside in green spaces to ensure proper physical distancing (6 feet). If you need to snack in an academic building, please maintain physical distance (6 feet) and limit the amount of time you are without a face covering. Please refer to your course syllabus where instructors may have specified their food and drink policy for their classroom.

The Kent Student Center Hub not only has dining options but also provides space where you can enjoy the food you brought from home.

Meal plan swipes may be used at Eastway Fresh Food Company and Design Innovation Hub Dining. You can also use a meal swipe in the Meal Exchange program at Rosie's Diner and Market, Eastway Market and Deli and George T. Simon III Café.

Meal plans may only be used on campus at University Dining Services locations. However, there are some off-campus eateries that will accept FLASHcash. For more information on FLASHcash, please call the FLASHcard Office at 330-672-2273.

Dining locations at Rosie's, Eastway Market, Simon Café and the Summit Street Smoothie Shop are cashless for fall semester. All other locations accept cash, including all eateries in the Kent Student Center Hub.

Additional information about dining locations and their hours of operations can be viewed by visiting the Hours of Operation page and the University Dining Services website or by contacting University Dining Services at dining@kent.edu.

#4 Q: Where can I go to take a remote class or find a quiet space to study while on campus? 

A: Many academic buildings have rooms assigned for use as remote learning spaces. Students using these rooms must abide by the same physical distancing requirements used in traditional classrooms and must wear a face covering at all times. Find a complete list of these spaces here.

Some spaces require making an appointment to use. To call for an appointment for those spaces, you will find a list of contacts for each department here.

#5 Q: Are all in-person gatherings on the Kent Campus other than classes prohibited?

A: Acting on guidance from the Kent City Health Department, the university issued a requirement that all university-sponsored events, meetings or gatherings of more than 10 people on the Kent Campus must be held via virtual technology. This requirement is in effect until further notice.

This includes events and activities sponsored by registered student organizations and academic departments. This does not affect classes. The delivery mode of all in-person courses will remain the same.

This is a precautionary and proactive measure to limit the spread of COVID-19 and to continue to maximize our opportunity to remain together on campus and learn in person. Currently, there are a small number of positive cases related to the Kent Campus. Implementing stricter measures now will lower the possibility of further spread. Visit the university's COVID-19 dashboard for more information regarding positive cases and campus status.

If you have an event or gathering currently scheduled as in person, please make arrangements to change it to a virtual format. If you need guidance about holding a virtual event or managing a current space reservation, please contact University Events and Conference Services at uecs@kent.edu or 330-672-3202.


Please remember, practicing the Flashes Safe Seven principles not only on campus but also off campus is the best way for us to navigate the pandemic successfully.

We appreciate everyone's cooperation as we continue to navigate the ever-changing pandemic. Let's all do our part to make sure that Flashes Take Care of Flashes!

Sincerely,

Manfred van Dulmen, Ph.D.
Interim Associate Provost for Academic Affairs
Interim Dean of Graduate Studies
Chair, Reopening Steering Committee

POSTED: Thursday, September 3, 2020 - 12:01pm
UPDATED: Thursday, September 3, 2020 - 12:06pm
WRITTEN BY:
Manfred van Dulmen, Ph.D. Interim Associate Provost for Academic Affairs