UCF continues to prioritize our community’s health and well-being following guidance from state and public health officials.
Right now, it’s more important than ever that we take care of ourselves and one another. We understand the past several months have been challenging and that things may look different than we are used to, but as Knights, we’ll get through this together.COVID-19 Return to Campus Policy
Potential COVID-19 Exposure
Because risk of exposure exists in any public place where people are present and the pandemic is a reality across our broader community, we can expect that UCF will not be immune from continued impact.
If you or someone you know tests positive for COVID-19, here are the steps you should to take:
- Stay home and do not come to campus.
- Self-isolate and avoid contact with other people and social gatherings.
- Let your supervisor or faculty member know that you’re ill and not able to come to work or class.
- Follow the instructions of your healthcare provider to determine if testing or treatment is needed.
- Call the UCF COVID Line at 407-823-2509 if you test positive.
Triggers for Additional On-Campus Restrictions and Increased or Full Remote Learning and WorkingExplore the Campus and Community Triggers
Face Covering Questions? We’ve Got You Covered.
It takes all Knights, whether on or off campus, to protect ourselves and all members of the UCF community. Find out all you need to know about when and where to wear face coverings, as well as how to get yours. Let’s pledge to Armor Up and work together to curb further spread of COVID-19.Get the latest info on face coverings
COVID TRAINING & SELF-CHECKER
Complete the COVID-19 Student Return to Campus Training available in Webcourses. Additionally, before returning to any UCF campus, you must fill out the COVID Self-Checker available in the UCF Mobile app each day.
Complete the COVID-19 Employee Return to Campus training available in Webcourses. All employees returning to any UCF campus also are required to fill out COVID Self-Checker available in the UCF Mobile app daily.
Visitors, Vendors & Contractors:
All UCF visitors, vendors and contractors are required to conduct symptom monitoring through the online visitor COVID Self-Checker before coming to campus or any university property.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is hand sanitizer available?
Yes. Frequently washing your hands with soap and water is the best way to get rid of germs and viruses and protect yourself from COVID-19, but if that is not available, an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60 percent alcohol will work.
UCF ordered an additional 1,200 hand sanitizing stations and 2,000 cases of refills. The stations are strategically placed around campus in high-traffic areas and near commonly touched surfaces, such as near the doors at building entry points.
Will I need to be tested for COVID-19 before returning to campus?
Some groups will be required be tested upon return to UCF, including:
- All students returning to university-owned housing
- All students and staff residing in on-campus Greek housing
- All student-athletes whether living on or off campus
There will be no out of pocket costs to students. UCF will bill students’ insurance provider, and if insurance does not cover, UCF will cover the cost of the COVID-19 test.
For others, COVID-19 testing is available at the main campus in Garage A, but is not required to return to campus.
What assistance is available to me to help me cope with COVID-19 or other life events?
Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS) is UCF’s mental health resource for students. You can visit CAPS’ website for information about and resources for coping during this time. Students can also schedule phone or virtual consultation with CAPS by calling 407-823-2811 or visiting their website.
Student Care Services continues to work remotely with anyone who needs additional academic or personal support during this time.
UCF offers our Employee Assistance Program (EAP) to all non-student employees. This program provides resources to help employees and their dependents cope with these types of life events. The EAP, administered by Health Advocate, provides confidential, short-term counseling at no cost to the employee.
Health Advocate Toll-Free Number: 877-240-6863
Health Advocate Website: HealthAdvocate.com/members
How can I access the self-checker in the UCF Mobile app?
Campus Events & Activities
What about fall commencement?
The Florida Board of Governors has directed UCF and all state universities to develop alternate plans for fall commencement ceremonies. While UCF will be unable to host a traditional face-to-face ceremony for our fall graduates in December, we are committed to ensuring that our students’ accomplishments are celebrated.
We understand that commencement ceremonies are a major milestone in the lives of our graduates and the loved ones who have supported them on their education journey. UCF is exploring additional ways to improve our virtual ceremonies to include memorable experiences for graduates.
Cap and gown rentals continue to be available for students who would like to take photos in their gowns. Alternatively, Herff Jones will refund students who prefer to cancel their cap and gown order completely.
We will share more information about commencement and reimbursements as soon as it’s available.
Are there in-person events and activities taking place?
University-sponsored events and programs should be virtual wherever possible without loss of effectiveness, including recruiting for Greek and student organizations, and follow CDC and public health guidelines, which may evolve during the semester.
Registered student organizations are required to submit safety plans for their requested in-person activities, including meetings, events and programming.
Is the Recreation and Wellness Center open?
Yes. The RWC is providing a phased approach to reopening which includes several operational, cleaning and safety changes. Providing students with safe facilities and programs continues to be a top priority.
The RWC will continue to remain flexible due to local health conditions in our reopening plans and may alter at any time based on the guidance provided by UCF as well as state and local health officials.
Visit the Recreation and Wellness Center website for more information.
Is there be a policy about returning to campus?
Yes. The COVID-19 Return to Campus policy was developed to implement campus health measures and provide for clear communication of enforcement steps for noncompliance. The policy applies to all members of the university community, as well as visitors and individuals and contractors who conduct business with the university, and it will apply to all facilities owned or controlled by the university.
The policy is available online and will be updated to reflect changes in federal, state and Board of Governors guidance or changing health conditions.
Will there be consequences for violating the policy?
Individuals who violate the COVID-19 Return to Campus policy will be given an opportunity to correct their behavior and may be asked to repeat training. Repeated acts of noncompliance will result in the individual’s removal from campus until compliance is achieved. Continued noncompliance may result in disciplinary action for faculty, staff and students, up to and including dismissal utilizing existing disciplinary action regulations and policies. Consequences for violating this policy do vary based on severity of offense.
Will UCF switch to remote instruction after Thanksgiving?
UCF will switch to remote instruction following the Thanksgiving holiday to minimize risk associated with a potential virus resurgence. Final exams and assessments will be remote.
University operations will be normal, with residence halls, libraries and study and dining spaces will remain open for student use. Because students are permitted to return to UCF Housing for the two weeks of the fall semester following Thanksgiving, no refunds will be provided to students who elect to not return to their residence.
Would all classes again move to remote instruction if there is a resurgence of the virus?
It is possible, and UCF’s plan is flexible and can be adjusted based on evolving public health conditions.
Will students who fall ill be able to continue their studies?
Faculty are being encouraged to plan courses so that students who fall ill will be able to continue in the class and learn remotely during the time they are ill, quarantined or isolated. Also, attendance requirements have been discouraged.
What about faculty members who fall ill?
Faculty at elevated risk for severe illness form COVID-19 will instruct courses remotely. Normal processes should be followed in the event a faculty member falls ill during the semester.
What measures will be taken to clean classrooms?
Classrooms will be cleaned daily. Additional and enhanced cleaning will take place in common spaces and areas where there are frequently touched surfaces, and disinfecting wipes will be available so that students can clean individual work spaces.
In addition, UCF has ordered an additional 1,200 hand sanitizing stations and 2,000 cases of refills. The stations will be strategically placed around campus in high-traffic areas and near commonly touched surfaces, such as near the doors at building entry points.
Is UCF Housing open to students this fall?
UCF Housing is open to students this fall, and all residents were required to sign a housing agreement addendum acknowledging the risks associated with COVID-19.
Has UCF Housing implemented any changes because of COVID-19?
Yes, UCF Housing implemented the following changes this fall because of COVID-19.
Based on guidance from public health officials, UCF Housing moved to reduced occupancy for 2020-2021. The Towers at Knights Plaza, NorthView, Rosen Apartments, and UnionWest remained at regular occupancy. Four hundred fifty shared bedrooms in suites in the Nike, Hercules and Libra communities have been converted to single rooms for reduced occupancy.
Space and Amenity Restrictions
UCF may restrict the full use of spaces and amenities within the residential community including, but not limited to:
- No guests or visitors, at any time, including overnight, are permitted.
- Access to residential spaces is restricted to residential students, UCF staff and approved vendors.
- Residents may only enter the residential building to which they are assigned unless otherwise posted (i.e., to access services such as mailroom, laundry, or staff offices).
- Residents may only have one other building resident as a guest in their assigned room.
- Access to and use of community amenities/space may be restricted or limited in capacity (community space, offices, lounges, kitchen, laundry rooms, elevators, etc.).
Will I be permitted to stay in UCF Housing if I fall ill?
Students should have a plan for the possibility they may test positive for COVID-19. Residents will be required to isolate up to 14 days or until they receive medical clearance to return to their housing assignment.
All residents must disclose to Student Health Services immediately upon notification of positive COVID-19 test status or contact from Florida Department of Health about exposure and instruction to isolate.
UCF Housing and Residence Life has designated a limited number of spaces in Academic Year communities, Towers at Knights Plaza, NorthView, UnionWest and Rosen for UCF Housing residents who fall ill and are unable to travel to their permanent residence to isolate.
What is required of employees returning to campus?
All employees returning to any UCF campus are expected to self-check by filling out a symptom and exposure screening form in the UCF Mobile app. The COVID-19 Self-Checker is required to be completed each time an employee returns to on-site work, and supervisors will receive notifications about employees not cleared to return to the office.
All employees returning to the workplace also are required to complete the training “Returning to Campus Operations” in Webcourses that outlines health and safety protocols each of us is expected to follow.
Employees who have tested positive for COVID-19 or have been in proximity to someone who has must stay home and not come to UCF.
What if I’m not comfortable returning to the office?
Employees who can continue to work remotely should, especially those at high risk of complications from COVID-19. Continued physical distancing and proper safety precautions remain critical, and this may mean a blend of remote and in-person work for some employees.
Supervisors should consider the individual needs and circumstances of their employees and are advised to remain flexible and understanding, knowing that some employees do not need to work from campus, may not feel comfortable doing so at this time, or have special circumstances that would hinder them from working on campus. Employees should work with their supervisors on their work schedule and arrangements.
Special circumstances include having a higher health risk according to CDC guidelines, being restricted by a medical isolation order or having dependent-care responsibilities.
Can face-to-face staff and group meetings resume?
Meetings, training sessions and other group discussions should continue to occur in virtual platforms, rather than traditional face-to-face meetings, as much as possible. Some of the available tools are Skype, Teams and Zoom. Continued physical distancing remains critical to prevent further spread of COVID-19.
Can my department order cleaning and disinfecting supplies on its own?
Departments should proceed as they normally would with regular orders for office items such as soap, hand sanitizer, paper towels and other cleaning supplies. These items are especially important as employees begin returning to work and have the need to clean their personal workspaces, and departments should continue with their normal processes for procuring these supplies at their own cost.
Departments with additional needs for cleaning and disinfecting supplies beyond their regular orders should seek authorization prior to purchasing by directing their requests to email@example.com. It is important that any new requests for items intended to prevent further spread of COVID-19 funnel through this centralized request system in case there is a possibility for future reimbursement.
If I’ve tested positive for COVID-19, when can I return to campus?
Employees should stay home and not return to work until they meet the criteria to discontinue home isolation and have consulted with a healthcare provider and local health department. Supervisors should not require a sick employee to provide a negative COVID-19 test result or healthcare provider’s note to return to campus.
All students and faculty and staff members should notify UCF that they have tested positive by calling the UCF COVID Line at 407-823-2509. This will ensure that robust tracing of cases at UCF has started and will help the university identify and contain potentially impacted populations.
Are there instructions for how to use the COVID Self-Checker?
Where can I download the UCF Mobile app?
What if I am unable to access the COVID Self-Checker through a smartphone or UCF Mobile app?
What if I am unable to access the online COVID Self-Checker due to internet or other technical issues?
If you are unable to access the COVID Self-Checker through the web, first try a different web browser (Chrome is the preferred browser for the questionnaire) or try clearing your browser cache.
Employees: If that is unsuccessful, complete the online PDF Self Questionnaire (English and Spanish) and follow the instructions based on your responses. You will also need to contact your supervisor and work together to communicate about your schedule if you select yes for the questions. If you are unable to complete the COVID Self-Checker until the technical issue is resolved, you will need to continue to work directly with your supervisor.
What if I am unable to complete the COVID Self-Checker due to technical issues?
Submit a Technical Assistance Request located at the bottom of the questionnaire, and the COVID Self-Checker support team will resolve the issue.
Employees: Contact your supervisor if you’re unable to complete the questionnaire due to technical issues. Complete the online PDF Self Questionnaire (English and Spanish) and follow the instructions based on your responses.
What if an employee’s supervisor isn’t listed?
You should submit a Technical Assistance Request located at the bottom of the COVID Self-Checker and reach out to your supervisor to notify them that you were unable to submit the questionnaire. You should complete the online PDF Self Questionnaire and follow the instructions based on your responses.
Can an employee change their manager/supervisor in the COVID Self-Checker?
This field will be pre-populated with your identified manager/supervisor on record. You are permitted to change the field with the permission of your management.
What if I am unable to find my residence, building or room location?
Students: Temporarily submit “No” to the question “Are you living in UCF campus housing?” and then submit a Technical Assistance Request located at the bottom of the questionnaire. The COVID Self-Checker support team will investigate adding the location.
Employees: Type in your location in the text box under “Specify your primary UCF location or room if not found.”
What if an employee doesn’t have a primary location?
Check the box next to “I am mobile on campus and do not have a primary UCF location.”
What do I do if I have allergies or a chronic illness which displays symptoms on the checker?
You should only identify symptoms that are of a new onset and not from a known chronic health condition.
Is UCF storing or sharing my symptoms?
No. UCF is committed to protecting your privacy.
Students: The symptoms you indicate in the self-checker will not be shared or stored in any system of record. However, the information you provide for your residence and/or first building location will be stored because it could be used to assist UCF officials in investigating possible COVID-19 exposures.
Employees: Supervisors will be notified that the employee COVID self-checker has been completed, but the symptoms you indicate in the self-checker questionnaire will not be shared with your supervisor or any other UCF staff member. Symptom data will not be stored in any system of record. However, information you provide on location will be stored because it will be used to assist UCF officials in investigating possible COVID-19 employee exposures.
If I am a student, what if I am unable to find the first building I plan to visit?
Submit a Technical Assistance Request located at the bottom of the questionnaire, and the COVID Self-Checker support team will investigate adding the location.
Is the self-checker doing contact tracing?
No. UCF is not using any mobile app technology, including UCF Mobile, for contact tracing.
Have there been positive cases of COVID-19 at UCF?
UCF has seen some employees and students test positive for COVID-19. The vast majority of UCF’s cases have involved students who are either asymptomatic or experienced only minor symptoms.
Most of the recent cases involve students who said they have not been on campus during the time they could have impacted others. Many are the result of our contact tracing efforts – reaching out to others who have had close contact with someone who has tested positive and testing them. We hope these efforts will help to reduce the spread as more members of the UCF community become aware they have tested positive.
We encourage anyone who finds themselves experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 to get tested at one of the UCF testing sites or at a location near them. Testing is important for tracking the virus and tracing to prevent further community spread, and we are already seeing that this process is effective.
View the UCF COVID dashboard for more information.
How is UCF tracing and tracking cases of COVID-19?
Robust tracing of COVID-19 cases at UCF will help the university identify and contain potentially impacted populations. UCF will continue to partner with state and local health officials to regularly monitor rates of new cases. Student volunteers will partner with the Florida Department of Health as contact tracers beginning this summer and will work with faculty from the College of Medicine and College of Nursing.
What do I do if I exhibit symptoms of COVID-19?
If you become ill with symptoms of COVID-19, stay home and contact your primary care physician, who will determine whether testing or treatment is needed. Avoid contact with other people and social gatherings to keep from spreading your illness to others. Employees should also notify their supervisor that they are ill and not able to return to work and follow the instructions of their healthcare provider.
UCF students and employees should call the UCF COVID Line to obtain an ordered test at 407-823-2509
Also follow these best practices while awaiting test results and if you test positive for COVID-19:
- Do not leave your home, except to get medical care, until cleared by your healthcare provider.
- Do not share household items.
- Wear a mask around others if contact is necessary.
- Report if you have tested positive for COVID-19 by calling the UCF COVID Line at 407-823-2509
How will I be informed of possible COVID-19 exposure at UCF?
If there is the possibility that you have been exposed to COVID-19 because a colleague has tested positive, you will be notified directly. Through contact tracing, the Department of Health will assess and inform all persons who may be at risk and require quarantine and/or testing. In line with public health practices and medical and student privacy laws, only those who would need to know about confirmed COVID-19 cases for personal health and safety reasons will be informed.
The Department of Health will notify UCF of all known or suspected cases at UCF, and confirmed cases will be shared with the public via a forthcoming dashboard feature on the COVID-19 website that lists confirmed cases of COVID-19 that involve a student or faculty or staff member. The dashboard will be generic in nature, in accordance with medical and student privacy laws and public health best practices.
Campus housing, Environmental Health and Safety or other areas will be apprised of known or suspected cases and the need for isolation, quarantine and appropriate cleaning and disinfecting measures.
What do I do if I have been in contact with someone with COVID-19?
If you know that you have had close contact with a co-worker, visitor, family member or other individual who has confirmed COVID-19 you should stay home and contact your primary care physician, who will determine whether testing or treatment is needed. Avoid contact with other people and social gatherings to keep from spreading your illness to others. Employees should also notify their supervisor that they are ill and not able to return to work and follow the instructions of their healthcare provider.
A high-risk exposure generally involves exposure of eyes, nose or mouth, particularly if the individual was in contact of less than 6 feet for a period more than 15 minutes with a person infected with COVID-19.
Will there be additional attention paid to cleaning?
Yes, additional and enhanced cleaning will take place in common spaces and areas where there are frequently touched surfaces, including hallways, stairways, restrooms and elevators.
Employees will be responsible for cleaning and maintaining their individual workspaces, including desks, chairs and computer equipment.
Is UCF making other safety enhancements?
Yes, additional signage and touch-free hand-sanitizing stations will be placed across campus.
Upgrades also are being made to UCF buildings to reduce the number of shared touchpoints in common spaces by the time the fall semester begins. These include more foot-operated door openers and touchless restroom features and elevators.
What if I have concerns about disregard of safety precautions?
Immediate concerns should be brought to your supervisor’s attention. If it is not possible to elevate concerns at the department level, the IntegrityLine is a secure system to report suspected misconduct.
You can reach the IntegrityLine 24/7 at compliance.ucf.edu or 1-855-877-6049. All reports are reviewed by the University Compliance, Ethics and Risk Office, and investigated as discreetly and promptly as possible.
What measures are being taken to reduce COVID-19 transmission through the university’s heating, air conditioning and ventilation (HVAC) systems?
Measures being taken address ventilation, filtration, administrative controls and sterilization technology. Ventilation and filtration provided by HVAC systems can reduce the airborne concentrates of SARS-CoV-2 and, thus, reduce the risk of transmission through the air.
Filtration: UCF’s research facilities utilize MERV 9 pre-filters and MERV 14 final filters. UCF will continue to adhere to the maintenance schedules for quarterly, semi-annual and annual filter changes for all HVAC systems on campus.
Ventilation: UCF will continue to maintain design ventilation rates that are determined by ASHRAE standards for air change rates based on each building’s application.
Administrative controls: UCF is working with the Registrar’s Office on class start times and cleaning schedules, and will provide further updates when the Fall Classroom Seating Task Force further refines the model for opening in fall semester. This will result in an increase in overall ventilation effectiveness per occupant, as the design ACH rates will remain in place or increase where possible, while the population in each building is anticipated to decrease.
Sterilization technology: The university is installing additional ultraviolet-bandwidth energy (UV-C) lighting in air handler units serving instructional and administrative offices. While UV-C will not mitigate transmission risk of SARS and COVID-19 within campus buildings’ HVAC air streams, the ultraviolet energy will help inactivate the DNA and RNA of most viral, bacterial, and fungal organisms so that they are unable to replicate. The kill rate for UV-C is based on a factor of time and exposure to the light. Note that even with high-intensity UV-C irradiation, the deactivation rate will not be 100% for all biological particles.
Is ultraviolet light technology currently used to sterilize the air in campus buildings?
The energy of ultraviolet light (UV-C) filtration is currently used in some air handlers on campus, as it is effective in disrupting the reproductive DNA and RNA of infectious pathogens and helps maintain a clean and sterile environment inside the air handlers. UV-C technology is currently being installed in select high-density instructional, administrative offices and operational support buildings. Buildings that are already 100% outside air, single pass airstream by design are not currently slated for UV-C lighting rollouts as none of those air systems have any return air from the occupied spaces. AHU systems in research buildings that do utilize mixed return and outside air (offices, classrooms) are slated for UV-C lighting.
What type of testing is UCF doing?
Routine Testing remains available to our faculty, staff and students via AVENTUS in Garage A main campus Monday-Friday 9-5 and Saturday 1-5. COVID Line nurses use standing orders for faculty, staff and students who request testing. Also, SHS, UCF Health, and community providers may order testing through AVENTUS. This testing is via nasal pharyngeal (NP) samples with PCR testing. Results are available within 48 hours. Cost is a patient responsibility (has been covered by insurance).
Move-in Testing approximately 6,000 students during August for students on main campus, downtown campus and Rosen campus. Testing was via NP samples and PCR testing with results in 48 hours. AVENTUS labs performed the testing with up to 800 students per day. Considerations include performing a randomized selection as opposed to requiring all residents to be tested.
Random Testing is by selection of groups which may be at higher risk of COVID. Via a randomized selection process a subset of the group is identified for testing. This testing is primarily designed to measure prevalence of COVID within selected groups but also identifies persons who may be infectious. Testing has initially been performed via AVENTUS with NP swabs and PCR testing. We will be migrating October 26th to testing this group at SHS on the main campus Health Center using observed self-collection of nasal samples and the Abbott ID Now molecular testing system. Results will be same day and we anticipate selecting 110 persons for each testing event. I anticipate conducting this random testing every two weeks for the next year. Cost for this required testing is covered by the UCF Cares money.
Armor Up, Knights
It takes each of us to help protect our UCF community. Prevent and avoid the spread of COVID-19 with these tips.
Wear face covering
Wash hands often
Keep 6ft physical distance
Avoid touching your face
Stay home if you or someone in close proximity has COVID-19