LPU Press Room | March 12, 2020

LPU Community,

The health and well-being of LPU students, faculty, and staff is the top priority of University officials. There are currently no reported cases of COVID-19 at LPU. However, we are monitoring daily the guidelines from the Department of Education, the CDC, and our local and state health authorities. The decisions below have been made out of an abundance of caution and align with public health guidelines.

Classes

At this time, the university has not cancelled in person classes. LPU’s smaller class sizes are a benefit in this situation, as risks are said to be lower for smaller groups. However, we know that this is a rapidly evolving situation. University officials are prepared to make modifications to instructional modalities as so guided by the authorities.

Attendance Policies

Faculty are aware of the evolving situation. Students who are sick should not attended class. Students should talk to their individual professors regarding their situation. Symptom-free students are expected to attend classes as scheduled.

Travel

Effective immediately, all university-related air travel will be canceled through the end of March. This includes the Global Life Spring Break trips to Cuba and Hawaii, which are postponed until further notice. An update will be made by April 1st regarding future travel.

Personal Travel

University officials strongly recommend members of the LPU community to postpone nonessential travel at this time, including plans for Spring Break.

Members of the community who are planning to travel internationally in the coming weeks should review the recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). Be advised that the U.S. Department of State has advised all U.S. citizens not to embark on cruise travel at this time. For those who choose to travel internationally, be prepared for health screenings, flight cancellations, or isolation measures — including the possibility of a required 14-day self-isolation before returning to campus.

Additionally, students, staff, and faculty who choose to travel to areas where a cluster of cases are being seen should self-report their plans to the LPU’s Health & Wellness Center by filling out this form.

Events

Effective immediately, LPU is limiting the size of events to no more than 200 in attendance through the end of March, unless approved by senior leaders. Events scheduled to take place in April will be evaluated within the next two weeks whether they will continue as planned or need to be modified/canceled. In the meantime, staff, faculty or students who are planning events in April should develop contingency plans.

Chapel and LPU Conference

LPU Conference has been postponed until further notice. All Chapel services will be canceled until after spring break. A future update will be provided regarding Chapel services after Spring Break.

Commencement

Commencement and related activities remain scheduled at this time but are under review. More information will be made available in the coming weeks.

Athletics

LPU Athletics is adapting workout and practice schedules. All university athletes will be contacted by the Athletic Department regarding these changes.

The NAIA has cancelled all winter championship events. Read more

Housing and Dining Facilities

University housing will remain open, as will dining services. University officials will continue to assess this decision as public health agencies provide recommendations.

Provider, LPU’s food service vendor, has begun taking additional health precautions, in alignment with state and local agencies.

Custodial Teams

The LPU facilities team continues to work above and beyond to keep our campus healthy, including increased cleaning procedures and the addition of several new hand sanitizer dispensers around campus.

Staff and Faculty

General operations of the University remain open. Symptom-free staff are expected to continue to work as normal but are encouraged to implement social distancing practices.

Staff and faculty who are sick should stay home and contact their supervisor for further instructions. Consistent with CDC guidelines, faculty or staff should not return to work until they are free of fever for at least 24 hours without fever-reducing medication.

Emotional Health

For those in our community who are experiencing emotional distress from the news surrounding this outbreak, please reach out to Emmaus Road Christian Counseling Center or the Office of Student Development for additional support.

Known the Facts

High-Risk Populations

People at higher risk of contracting severe cases of COVID-19 include:

  • Older adults
  • People who have serious chronic medial conditions like:
    • Heart disease
    • Diabetes
    • Lung disease

Learn more about COVID-19, your risk, and how to stop the spread og germs by watching the videos published by the CDC.

Stigma and Resilience

Public Health outbreaks such as COVID-19 can cause a lot of anxiety. Fear and anxiety can lead to social stigma. According to the CDC, “It is important to remember that people – including those of Asian descent – who do not live in or have not recently been in an area of ongoing spread of the virus that causes COVID-19, or have not been in contact with a person who is a confirmed or suspected case of COVID-19 are not at greater risk of spreading COVID-19 than other Americans.” Read and share the facts.

Tips to Stay Healthy

There are steps that everyone can take to reduce the risk of getting sick or infecting others:

  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Limit close contact, like kissing, hugging, shaking hands, and sharing cups or utensils.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue.
  • Get a flu shot to prevent influenza if you have not done so this season.

Learn more

Questions

LPU has created a centralized form for questions and inquiries about COVID-19 related issues. If you have a question, please fill out the form and a member of the Coronavirus Response Team will follow up with you.

Contact Coronavirus Response Team: https://lifepacific.wufoo.com/forms/contact-coronavirus-response-team/

We recognize that the precautionary steps being taken may cause inconvenience for members of our community. Please know that the decisions made are done out of care for all students, staff, and faculty and may change as we monitor the campus affects daily. We thank everyone for their continued patience and attentiveness during this evolving situation.

Lastly, this is not a time to fear, but a time to be vigilant. We remain certain of God’s unwavering presence with us. God is in charge. “He stilled the storm to a whisper; the waves of the sea were hushed.”– Psalm 107:29 (NIV)

Blessings,

President Angie Richey