Norwich University’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic has been exceptional. Our commitment to our core values and our collaboration in support of protecting the health and safety of all members of our community has made all the difference. Every student, faculty member, and staff member has had to make changes to routines and learn new ways of accomplishing goals, and I am so grateful to each of you. To remain ahead of the pandemic, the University has appointed a COVID Response and Action Team who has taken on the additional duties inherent with the pandemic. While I am certain most of you will already know the team members, I am delighted to introduce their new roles to the community.
With the fall season’s bright foliage and cooler temperatures, we turn our thoughts to winter break and how Norwich will execute an orderly departure from campus. As with so many other aspects of college life, the uncertainties of COVID-19 have changed how we must approach and plan for winter break. We fully anticipate a phased return to campus in the spring that was similar to August arrival, but we also need to be prepared for other scenarios. There will be some important changes to how you prepare for your winter break departure and a requirement to vacate the residential halls during this time.
The first six weeks of the fall semester have been delivered successfully due to our community’s united effort to prioritize the health and safety of our Norwich family and Central Vermont community. Together we have reduced the risk of infection through our use of masks and compliance with physical distancing, our enhanced sanitation protocols, and physical plant and operational adjustments to allow for reduced density and distancing.
Given our current situation of zero positive cases, adherence to behavioral standards by the vast majority of our students, and low prevalence of the virus in the local area, we can now proceed to Phase 3 because of how attentive and conscientious students and employees have been in complying with the health and safety mandates of Phase 2.
Upon our decision to deliver an in-person student experience for Fall 2020, I committed to reviewing our policies and potentially loosening restrictions once we had some data to review and no later than 15 September. Given our current situation of zero positive cases, adherence to behavioral standards by the vast majority of our students, and low prevalence of the virus in the local area, we will begin loosening restrictions according to the guidelines contained in this memo.
As an outcome of our meetings last week with Dr. Timothy Partridge, our Norwich University medical director, I want to provide a critical update on the Norwich University Mask Policy.
In order to comply with the Vermont Department of Health guidelines and continue on our current trajectory to maintain the health and safety of our campus, Northfield and central Vermont communities, I ask that you read, understand and fully comply with this policy. Thank you for your understanding and efforts to ensure that Norwich University is a safe environment for everyone. We will evaluate these rules and standards constantly and adapt as the situation and advise of medical professionals dictate.
Yours in Service,
Mark C. Anarumo, PhD
Col, USAF (Ret) President
On March 27, 2020 the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES) was signed into federal law. Included in the Act was the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund (HEERF) to support college students whose education was disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic with financial grants. These emergency grants are intended to assist students with unanticipated expenses for food, housing, academic course materials, technology, health care and child care.
Norwich University applied for and received funding under this program and used no less than half the amount, or $1,002,307, for emergency financial grants to students. Per Department of Education (DOE) guidance, the university made direct cash grants to students. Grants were prioritized based on socioeconomic circumstance. Students must have met federal eligibility requirements and could not have been exclusively enrolled in an online program prior to March 13, 2020, to qualify to receive HEERF emergency funds. The university has distributed $1,002,307 to 955 students. This represents approximately 46% of the 2,095 CARES-eligible students.
Norwich University and Sodexo Dining Services are working together to operate our on-campus dining facilities in compliance with current guidance from the CDC and the Vermont Department of Health. To prevent the spread of the coronavirus, physical distancing and enhanced cleaning protocols will be integrated into everything we do. To learn more about dining locations, meal options, hours of operation, seating arrangements, and other details of dining service please view this video. Together we are committed to operating safely and delivering delicious meals to our campus community.
Please visit: https://norwich.sodexomyway.com
Dear Norwich Students, Parents, Faculty, Staff, Alumni and Friends:
This past Sunday, August 16th, we welcomed about 240 students to campus in the second phase of a six-phase schedule of arrival days in advance of the start of the fall semester. The majority of this arrival cohort was comprised of Corps and civilian upperclass student leaders, together with the Provisional Battalion Rooks.
Our reception process continues to be highly organized and includes COVID-19 testing for every student with results reported in our 24-48 hour testing protocol and timeline. As of this morning, there are a total of 4 positive cases on campus, representing students from the first and second arrival phases. Those students were immediately notified by the Green Mountain Family Practice and have been quarantined according to our policy.
This past weekend Norwich University welcomed the first of six phases of new and returning Corps and civilian students back to campus for the fall 2020 semester. Approximately 500 students returned to campus eager to begin their fall semester of studies. Watch the video to learn about this highly organized process, which included COVID-19 testing for every student supported by the faculty and students of the University’s School of Nursing.