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Nikasha N Dicks
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ATC Update: 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Aiken Technical College is continuing to monitor developments regarding the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). As always, our primary concerns are the safety and well-being of our students, faculty, and staff. Below are links to resources about COVID-19 and the latest College updates.

RESOURCES

We encourage our campus community to rely on reputable sources for information. Below are links to information regarding COVID-19:

UPDATE AS OF 5 P.M. MARCH 24, 2020

South Carolina Governor Henry McMaster and South Carolina Superintendent of Education Molly Spearman announced plans to extend the closure of school campuses through April. This incudes public K-12 schools, colleges, and universities.

What does this mean for Aiken Technical College?

The College campus will remain closed through the end of April, per the announcement from the South Carolina Governor's Office. This means that only members of the emergency operations planning team and identified essential staff are allowed to be on campus during the campus closure. College operations will continue remotely.

No events will be held on campus during this time.

How will this impact classes?

Classes will continue to be delivered online through the remainder of the semester. The College is working with faculty to explore options to make up instructional time for students enrolled in labs and clinicals.

Can I still reach faculty and staff during this time?

Yes. Most ATC employees are working remotely and are still available to assist you. Email will be the best way to contact faculty and staff during this time.

Students, faculty, and staff should continue to check their ATC email daily for the latest information.

UPDATE AS OF 1 P.M. MARCH 20, 2020

As a result of the required College campus closure from March 16-31, ATC will not observe spring break, which was scheduled for April 6-10. This adjustment to the academic calendar will provide the time needed to meet instructional requirements. This will also reduce the possibility of extending the academic term.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control recommend not hosting large events and gatherings to limit the spread of the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19).

Due to guidelines and recommendations established, the following spring events will not be held as scheduled: pinning and induction ceremonies, Awards Night, and Commencement. The College is currently exploring alternatives to honor students for their achievements.

UPDATE AS OF 5:30 P.M. MARCH 17, 2020

Aiken Technical College has adapted its operations to continue its mission of providing educational and workforce development opportunities for our students.

With the exception of the emergency operations transition team, most ATC employees began telecommuting on Tuesday, March 17, and will continue through Tuesday, March 31.

The College has worked closely with academic deans and faculty to finalize a plan that will enable students to complete their coursework with as little disruption as possible.

Please see below for the latest developments regarding classes:

  • Online classes will continue as scheduled for the remainder of the spring semester.
  • By March 23, all classes that would normally meet face-to-face will shift to online delivery for the remainder of the spring semester. Please check your ATC email and Blackboard for assignments and due dates from your instructor.
  • By March 23, all hybrid classes will shift to completely online for the remainder of the spring semester. Please check your ATC email and Blackboard for assignments and due dates from your instructor.
  • Instructors will communicate with students regarding plans for making up instructional time for labs, clinicals, or for work missed due to limited internet access.

The College is currently reassessing the academic calendar regarding spring break and final exams.

UPDATE AS OF 11:35 A.M. MARCH 16, 2020

Aiken Technical College is reviewing opportunities to transition face-to-face class meetings to online-only delivery. It is important to us that you are able to continue your academic progression with as minimal delay as possible.

As the College continues to work to finalize these plans, please check your ATC email for further information from the College or your instructor.

UPDATE AS OF 7:20 P.M. MARCH 15, 2020

Aiken Technical College has closely followed developments regarding the Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). The safety and well-being of our faculty, staff, students, and guests continue to be our top priority.

Per South Carolina Gov. Henry McMaster’s announcement today, the College will suspend all face-to-face class meetings from March 16 through March 31, including clinicals and labs. Online classes will continue as scheduled.

ATC employees should report to work on Monday, March 16 as regularly scheduled.

The annual Benefactor & Recipient Breakfast planned for Tuesday, March 17 is canceled. All other March campus events will be postponed or canceled.

The College’s Blessing Box will continue to be available. The Blessing Box is located outside of the Student Activities Center.

Students, faculty, and staff should continue to check their ATC email daily for the latest information.

They are also encouraged to refer to reliable sources for information on COVID-19 such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html) and the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (www.scdhec.gov/covid19).

UPDATE AS OF MARCH 11, 2020

COLLEGE SAFETY MEASURES

Aiken Technical College is following the protocols and guidelines of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control, and the World Health Organization to promote a healthy campus.

The College has taken measures to increase awareness across campus on how to minimize the spread of germs and diseases. The College is frequently communicating with faculty, staff, and students through emails and informational posters throughout the campus.

Further, the ATC custodial staff are increasing the number of times they are disinfecting the campus’s public areas on their daily rounds including door handles and knobs in gathering spaces and restrooms. Commonly used items in classrooms are also being disinfected.

Located around campus are fully stocked hand sanitizer units on the walls and appropriate foam soaps in the facilities.

Currently, the College is not prohibiting business travel—although a number of national conferences have been canceled. Employees who have planned to attend a conference or professional development opportunity should check with conference organizers for any updates.

For general travel guidance please refer to the CDC Travelers’ Health page at https://wwwnc.cdc.gov/travel.

Also, in the event of a campus closure, we will follow emergency protocols and will work with faculty, staff, and students to mitigate learning disruptions that could impact academic progression and financial aid.

PRECAUTIONS YOU CAN TAKE

We continue to encourage our community to take the necessary precautions and exercise good health practices.

According to the CDC, symptoms of COVID-19 include:

  • Fever
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath

The CDC and the SC DHEC recommend using the following precautions:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid contact with respiratory secretions.
  • 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.
  • Self-isolate if you become sick. (Visit SC DHEC's FAQ page for more information on what to do if you become sick: https://www.scdhec.gov/health/infectious-diseases/viruses/coronavirus-disease-2019-covid-19/frequently-asked-questions-covid-19)

Faculty, staff, and students should continue to check their ATC email for any further updates and information.

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