Archive for the ‘Fall 2020’ Category.

Important Update on the Fall Semester and Move-out Timing

Dear Students,

We have been fortunate to have continued in-person learning so far this semester, but the worsening county, state, and campus data trends are concerning. There has been an increase in the number of tests administered to campus community members and some recent positive results. There has also been an uptick in the number of students in isolation and quarantine, with growing numbers of individuals identified as close contacts. While there is no crystal ball to project the future, there is significant evidence that we should manage the situation before an outbreak occurs on campus. 

Therefore, with unanimous support from the Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees, the College has made the difficult decision to end in-person classes and on-campus residency next Saturday, Nov. 7, by 4 p.m. All classes will be delivered entirely online starting Monday, Nov. 9. Only pre-approved students can remain on campus after Nov. 7.

Please review these FAQs, which will be updated as questions arise. Contact information@lvc.edu or call 717-867-6555 if you have a question that has not been addressed. We will hold a virtual town hall for students and families Thursday, Nov. 5, at 7 p.m. | Join at this link. (password: GoValley)

A few key points:

  • This coming week, you can choose to take your classes either online or in-person. You do not need to make a formal request to the registrar but should make your professors aware of your plans.
  • Continue to complete the daily symptom tracker for 14 days after you leave campus. If you receive a Red X at any point in these 14 days, contact student health services at healthservices@lvc.edu or 717-867-6232. 
  • Keep following the Community Covenant. Vigilantly wash your hands and practice physical distancing. Do not attend parties, participate in gatherings, or travel with others in cars.
  • If your academic program necessitates you to be on-campus, even if you are commuting, continue to fill out the daily symptom tracker. Please check this blog for open hours.
  • Academic affairs is working with faculty to ensure students fulfill their graduation requirements.

Residential Students:

  • This evening, residence life will place sign-out sheets with instructions on your door. Notify your RA and sign the sheet when you leave campus. Up to two family members can come to campus to assist you with moving out. They must be masked. Residence life will inspect your room upon your departure.
  • If you feel you need to remain living in campus housing, please complete this request form by Monday, Nov. 2., at noon. Those who have clinicals or student teaching requirements and those who need access to technology, housing, food, or other in-person services will be considered. Students who remain on campus must continue to use the daily symptom tracker.
  • Take all your belongings with you. Contact Res-Life@lvc.edu with questions. 
  • Self-quarantine at home for two weeks to protect family members.
  • The College will credit your student account at the end of the semester with pro-rated room and board fees for Nov. 8 through Nov. 25, unless you are approved to remain on campus. We will carry these credits over to your spring semester bill. December graduates will receive a refund check via mail.

Though I wish we could have made it to the Thanksgiving break, winding down now—just two weeks ahead of schedule—is the most prudent thing to do. LVC’s faculty and staff have prepared well for this pivot. Campus resources such as the Breen Center for Graduate Success, the Center for Academic Success, tutoring, accessibility services, and counseling services will remain available remotely.

We are grateful for your patience and resilience in weathering this turn of events and appreciate how careful you have been in continuing to practice physical distancing, frequent handwashing, symptom tracking, and mask-wearing to keep yourself and each other safe. Please continue to follow these vital guidelines even after you return home. We are working hard to plan for the spring semester and will communicate updates soon about the 2021 return to campus plans.

Be safe and be well.

Dr. MacLaren

Campus Office Hours: Fall 2020 Semester

Please note some office hours will change/adjust beginning Nov. 6 due to students returning to virtual learning. Please call ahead to verify hours before visiting an office or facility.

Accessibility Resources—appointments preferred, but walk-ins available. Please drop by, call 717-867-6028 or ext. 6028, or email hannafor@lvc.edu or shutter@lvc.edu for assistance or to schedule an appointment. For students not registered: Visit here for the online registration form.

Admissions—Admissions is open for walk-in appointments Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Please call 717-867-6181 or email admission@lvc.edu to schedule an appointment.

Audiovisual Technology—closed for walk-ins; by appointment only. Please call 717-867-6200 or ext. 6200, or email avtech@lvc.edu for assistance or to schedule an appointment.

Bishop Library—please visit here for a list of hours, reserve a study room, and information about all library services. Questions? Email library@lvc.edu. If you currently have Bishop Library materials checked out (books, DVDs, CDs, technology) and do NOT need them for academic reasons, please return them before leaving campus. All items, except technology, can be returned in the book drop at the library’s main entrance.

Breen Center—please visit Handshake, call 717-867-6560, or stop by the office to schedule a virtual or in-person appointment. Questions? Email breencenter@lvc.edu or call 717-867-6560 or ext. 6560.

Business Office, Humanities 110: Student Accounts—closed for walk-ins; by appointment only. Please call 717-867-6300 or ext. 6300, or email cashier@lvc.edu for assistance or to schedule an appointment. Payments and deposits can be placed in the Business Office drop box, located to the left of the Humanities 110 entrance, as indicated by the signage.

Business Office, Humanities 004: Accounts Payable and Accounting—closed for walk-ins; by appointment only. Accounts Payable, please call 717-867-6327 or ext. 6327, or email accountspayable@lvc.edu for assistance or to schedule an appointment. Payment requests can be placed in the Business Office drop box, located to the right of the Humanities 004 entrance, as indicated by the signage.

Business Office, Humanities 002: Payroll—closed for walk-ins; by appointment only. Please call 717-867-6317 or ext. 6317, or email struzins@lvc.edu for assistance or to schedule an appointment. New student employee setup, and payroll processing for students, faculty, and staff.

Center for Academic Success—appointments preferred, but walk-ins available. Please drop by, email findyoursuccess@lvc.edu, or email a staff member for additional information. Visit our website to request an appointment for academic coaching, to meet with a peer, writing, or organizational, tutor, and to view the Study Pod schedule.

Center for Student Engagement—The CSE is open Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Students can check-in at the College Center Information Desk or call 717-867-6233 (ext. 6233) with questions or to schedule appointments. Staff who conduct in-person appointments will greet you at the suite entrance at the time of your appointment. Administrative offices in the CSE: Intercultural Affairs & Inclusive Programs, Residential Life, Student Affairs, and Student Engagement.

Copy Center—The Copy Center is open for department access only with a limit of two people in the center at a time. Hours are Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Please call 717-867-6331 or ext. 6331, or email ristenba@lvc.edu if you have any questions.

Counseling Services—Monday-Friday drop-in hours are 11 a.m. to 12 p.m. Monday-Friday virtual hours are 12–1 p.m. (no appointments needed for the drop-in or virtual hours). Visit our pages for links to our professional counselors and 5050 Peer Helpers’ office hours. Students can schedule free and confidential appointments at 717-867-6232 or ext. 6232, or counselingservices@lvc.edu. Call 911 in an emergency.

Facilities Services—appointments preferred. Please call 717-867-6340 or ext. 6340, or email fac-mgmt@lvc.edu for assistance or to schedule an appointment.

Financial Aid—closed for walk-ins; by appointment only. Please call 717-867-6126 or ext. 6126, or email finaid@lvc.edu for assistance or to schedule an appointment. 

Global Education—closed for walk-ins; by appointment only. Please email Jill Russell at russell@lvc.edu to schedule a virtual or in-person appointment.  

Health Services (Shroyer)—students who are symptom-free can see a registered nurse Monday-Friday 8.a.m. to 8 p.m. for evaluation and triage. Please call 717-867-6232 or ext. 6232, or email healthservices@lvc.edu if you have questions or have symptoms. Contact your resident assistant (RA), area coordinator (AC), our public safety (ext. 6111) after hours. Call 911 for medical emergencies.

Human Resources—appointments are preferred. Please contact Rachel Brunner for Benefits and HRIS questions (717-867-6414 or brunner@lvc.edu), Melissa Sherwood for COVID Contact Tracing and general HR issues (717-867-6415 or sherwood@lvc.edu), or Ann Hayes for HR-related issues (717-867-6416 or hayes@lvc.edu). 

Information Technology—closed for walk-ins; by appointment only. Please call 717-867-6072 or ext. 6072, text 717-685-5820, or email solutions@lvc.edu for assistance or to schedule an appointment.

 LVC Sports Center—closed for walks-in; by SignUp Genius only. Visit here to sign up for fitness classes, main pool slots, and fitness center (main and secondary) access. All students must reserve a spot using the SignUp Genius links. Spaces are filled on a first-come, first-serve basis, and you can reserve up to two days in advance.

Mailroom/Student Package Delivery—The mailroom in Humanities is open Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., for outgoing mail only. Student mail will be delivered to each residence hall if addressed properly to the student. Please see your RA for mail delivery. Student mail not appropriately addressed and student package pick-up will occur in the Mund College Center, Tweedie Room. Hours of pick-up are Monday-Friday, 9–11 a.m., and 2–4 p.m. Please call 717-867-6331 or ext. 6331, or email ristenba@lvc.edu if you have questions.

Public Safety—an officer is available 24 hours per day, seven days per week. Visit the Public Safety Office or call 717-867-6111 or ext. 6111, or email public-safety@lvc.edu for assistance. Call 911 in an emergency. 

The Registrar’s Office is open for in-person support, Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. To minimize traffic and contact among individuals, we encourage community members to contact us phone (717-867-6215 or ext. 6215) or email (registrar@lvc.edu). All our forms can be found online and can be submitted either online or by email. 

Solutions Center (IT)—closed for walk-ins; by appointment only. Please call 717-867-6272 or ext. 6072, text 717-685-5820, or email solutions@lvc.edu for assistance or to schedule an appointment. 

Updated Return to Campus Plan [Aug. 26, 2020]

LVC’s plan for returning to campus was most recently updated Aug. 26, 2020.

COVIDCampusSafetyPlan-2_20

Partnership with Penn State Health

Dear Campus Community,

I am happy to report that Lebanon Valley College has established a partnership with Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center as part of our fall return-to-campus preparations. Through its Department of Family and Community Medicine, the medical center will provide LVC with a medical director with direct experience treating college-aged students, additional clinical health center staffing, guidance on responding to suspected or confirmed COVID-19 cases, referrals for testing, and contact tracing support.

On- and off-campus clinical care for students will be significantly expanded. The Milton S. Hershey Medical Center has hired Dr. Levelle Drose-Bigatel, a family practice physician who will serve as medical director of LVC’s Shroyer Health Center. In addition to her general directorship duties, she will advise College staff regarding the care of students with suspected or confirmed COVID-19, refer students for COVID-19 testing, and provide guidance to the College on public health and infectious disease plans and protocols, drawing on expertise from Penn State Health and Penn State College of Medicine.

An advanced care practitioner (nurse practitioner or physician assistant) from Penn State Health will provide on-campus care alongside Shroyer Health Center staff and allow us to expand health center hours. Students will also have 24/7 access to Penn State Health’s on-demand virtual services, as well as in-person and on-call care at Penn State Health Medical Group—Palmyra.

Crucial to our reopening is the College’s ability to conduct thorough contact tracing, which requires substantial training and staff resources. Through this partnership, the Milton S. Hershey Medical Center will provide a licensed practical nurse to guide us in the process and to conduct tracing as needed. Eighteen LVC staff members have completed contact tracing training through an online course provided by Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. I am extremely grateful that they have signed up for such an important role.

Please continue to practice physical distancing, limit your interactions with others, wash your hands often, complete the daily symptom tracker, and wear a mask.

Sincerely,
President James MacLaren

Questions? Contact Us.

Email information@lvc.edu or call 717-867-6555 if you have questions about LVC’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Will room and board be refunded for the portion of the semester not spent in a residence hall?

Yes. Room and board charges will be calculated before the end of the fall semester based on each student’s number of days in residence. Any credits will be applied by the end of the semester and carried over to offset charges in the spring.

Will there be updates on LVC’s plans if they change?

Yes. The College continues to monitor the situation and will communicate updates regularly. If the current plans change, LVC will communicate updates on or before Sept. 7.

What will student life be like for students learning remotely?

LVC’s student affairs team is planning engaging activities for students who are learning remotely and those students who are on a delayed move-in schedule.

Clubs are being advised to hold meetings and events that include students, whether they are on-campus or studying remotely. Suggested meeting guidelines will be shared with club leadership at the Nuts & Bolts meetings at the start of the semester. If you have additional questions, please email stu-affairs@lvc.edu.

Will Counseling Services be available to students who are learning remotely?

Yes. LVC’s counseling services will offer in-person and online services for the Fall 2020 semester. The office has temporarily relocated to the second floor east end of the Vernon and Doris Bishop Library. Students can find clinicians and the 5050 Peer Helpers in the space directly above Bishop Brews. To schedule an in-person or online appointment, students can email counselingservices@lvc.edu, call 717-867-6232, or visit during open hours weekdays (in-person), 11 a.m.–noon in the Bishop Library location or online noon–1p.m.

Will students who move to campus and then choose to move home receive room and board refunds?

No. If a student moves to campus and later decides to move back home, room and board charges will be calculated by the end of the fall semester based on each student’s number of days in residence. Credits will be applied to student accounts by the end of the Fall semester and carried over to offset spring charges.

What will happen with federal work-study aid for students not residing on campus or not able to work in-person?

Students who do not live on campus (either temporarily or for the whole semester) and can conduct their job duties remotely, will continue to receive payment for hours worked. If they are living on campus, they should coordinate their work with their supervisor and work remotely as much as possible.

Will student health services be available to students who aren’t on campus?

Shroyer Health Center will be extending in-person service hours and increase clinical staff to respond to health issues and concerns in Fall 2020.  Students are asked to call health services at 717-867-6232 before reporting to Shroyer for instructions regarding appropriate response and care. Depending on need and safety concerns, health center visits may be handled by one or more of the following methods: in-person, telephone, or virtually.

Will any tuition for the semester be refunded?

No. The semester will be different than a typical semester, but students will continue to receive the intensive academic, career, and personal support that is the hallmark of the LVC experience. LVC’s faculty and staff spent the summer refining online learning methods and ensuring students will receive the educational outcomes outlined in every course syllabus. Therefore, while room and board fees will be pro-rated, the tuition and comprehensive fee for the semester will remain the same as published. The creativity and agility of the Spring 2020 semester required of faculty and staff resulted in several benefits to students that will continue to be part of the LVC experience. Department chairs report that the amount of time and attention faculty provided to students on an individual or small group basis increased quite a bit and led them to develop new resources. Academic support services and Bishop Library staff went above and beyond to support students and will incorporate insights into fall services. The virtual services offered by the Breen Center for Graduate Success have positioned the office to expand its services on-campus and for our commuting, online, and graduate students. And student affairs will provide online counseling and health services, as well as online engagement activities for those unable to participate in part or all of the semester in-person.

Will any fees be refunded?

No. LVC continues to offer residential life and student services engagement both in-person and online to address student needs.

How will student-athletes connect with coaches and teammates? Stay fit? Practice?

Coaches are developing fall practice plans for athletics activity. These plans will meet student-athlete and team needs while following NCAA, MAC, campus, and public health guidelines. Students on the delayed move-in plan can attend in-person athletics activities if they are able to come to campus.

What should students living off-campus do if they need computers, printers, or wi-fi access?

Sophomores and juniors who can commute to campus before Sept. 14 may use the College’s computers, printers, and wi-fi. Students who cannot commute to campus and need technology resources at home should contact the LVC Office of Information Technology at solutions@lvc.edu, 717-867-6072 (phone), or 717-685-5820 (text).

Can students keep their on-campus jobs or internships?

Yes. Students may work on-campus jobs with their supervisor’s permission and should conduct as much work remotely as possible. They may be asked to adjust their hours if they need to work in an office.

What does online learning mean?

Fully online learning means professors and students interact solely through digital platforms including Canvas, Zoom, and other software, as well as recordings, texting, and telephone. The format will vary according to the subject matter. The LVC faculty have carefully planned courses to be highly engaging and personalized and ensure students achieve course learning objectives whether the material is delivered in-person, online, or in some combination thereof (hybrid).

How should someone report possible symptoms of COVID-19?

All students and employees are required to self-monitor for symptoms and fever of 100.4°F or above and report symptoms using the college’s Digital Symptom Tracker.

Students should complete the tracker daily starting August 1.

Report only new symptoms. You do not need to report chronic symptoms you have experience pre-COVID-19.

Employees should complete the tracker every time before coming to campus.

This data will be monitored by the College’s clinical health providers.

If your results are a green checkmark, you are clear to attend class or come to campus.

If your results are a red X, you should contact a healthcare provider immediately.

Students should report symptoms or fever to Shroyer Health Center immediately and self-quarantine until receiving further instruction.

If a student reports symptoms to a faculty or staff member, that employee should contact the Shroyer Health Center and advise the student to contact the center immediately.

Employees should not report to campus and should refer to LVC’s Returning to Campus After COVID-19 policy and Employee Exposure to COVID-19 response found in ADP. Shroyer Health Center does not conduct testing for employees.

Anyone experiencing a health emergency should call 911.

What should students and families do if they are experiencing financial hardship?

Students experiencing financial hardship should contact the LVC Office of Financial Aid at finaid@lvc.edu or 717-867-6126.

Student Emergency Plan—Complete by Aug. 15

As noted in the Plan for a Safe Return to Campus, all students are required to complete a personal Student Emergency Plan to identify issues that must be considered should it be necessary to close the College and vacate campus. 

The form is now available on myLVC. To access the form, click on the “MyInfo for Students” link and sign in if you aren’t already signed in. Once on the students page, in the MANAGE MYINFO section, click the “Student Emergency Plan” link. Please complete your plan by Aug. 15 to be eligible to return to campus. Students will not be permitted to return to the College without having completed this emergency plan.

Healthcare Partners

LVC is working with Penn State Health Milton S. Hershey Medical Center and WellSpan to manage COVID-19 care and advise the College to adapt plans as needed. These partners are:

  • Assisting with COVID-19 screening, testing, and contact tracing;
  • Reviewing and providing input on LVC’s policies and protocols for a safe return to campus (student and employee policies and protocol flowchart for employee exposure to COVID-19);
  • Confirming guidance and recommendations are consistent with CDC guidance;
  • Providing support for return-to-campus activities to enhance the safety of LVC students and employees; and
  • Offering urgent and follow-up care for those diagnosed with COVID-19.

These services will supplement the existing on-campus health center nursing support that LVC students have access to during regular hours. The hours for health services have been extended to meet the needs of students during the pandemic.

Employees experiencing symptoms or seeking testing should work with their own healthcare provider.

Guiding Principles

LVC is committed to:

  • Delivering a quality educational and student experience across modalities;
  • Taking steps to decrease health and safety risks presented by in-person instruction and residential living;
  • Following and adopting guidelines from state and federal public health agencies;
  • Preserving as many jobs as possible while protecting the financial health of the institution;
  • Providing options for members of its community that require accommodations; and
  • Adapting its response and planning as needed as the pandemic situation evolves and more information becomes available.

The LVC COVID-19 Academic Response Faculty Task Force has designed the fall academic experience according to principles emphasizing flexibility, clear course outcomes, faculty mentoring, personalized education, support for student success, and streamlined online learning processes.

Important Update—Fall 2020 Return to Campus

Dear Campus Community,

I hope this update finds you and your family safe and well. I write to share some key updates on Lebanon Valley College’s planning for an in-person, on-time start to the Fall 2020 semester. I am closely coordinating with President-elect James MacLaren, the president’s staff, the Critical Incident and Emergency Management Team, and several Provost-led faculty task forces to develop a playbook to guide our efforts.

I’ve noted in the past that the successful and rapid pivot this spring demonstrated LVC at its best. The same is true of the planning underway. Administrators and faculty are working very hard researching, developing, and crystalizing complex plans that have many intertwined consequences that must be thought through.

We are basing our plans on a defined set of guiding principles and gating conditions placing the well-being of our campus community as the highest priority and emphasizing academic quality, equity, financial sustainability, and compliance with federal and state guidelines. We are closely following guidance from the PA Department of Education to build the playbook.

Fall Calendar and Academic Experience
The academic calendar will be adjusted to limit the number of times large numbers of students travel to and from campus. The semester will start one week early, with undergraduate and graduate classes beginning Monday, Aug. 24. There will be no Fall Break. On-campus learning will end by Thanksgiving break and instruction will continue online through Dec. 4. Finals are Dec. 7–11. Class times, locations, and schedules will be adjusted to allow for physical distancing. These changes will be communicated when finalized. We plan to accommodate students who may need to remain on campus after Thanksgiving for clinicals or athletics.

All classes will be delivered in-person and online at the same time to accommodate students with underlying conditions or those who become ill. Faculty are developing online learning components so they can give students support and attention. Clear course outcomes will be articulated, and support services will be emphasized perhaps now more than ever. Additionally, faculty will use Canvas and other LVC-supported technology whenever possible to streamline electronic course delivery.

Residential Life
We will decrease the density in our residential facilities for the fall. Currently, we plan on double occupancy with strict hygiene and physical distancing practices in place. The College has temporarily extended the Housing Exemption process to allow current residential students the opportunity to live off-campus in the local community and expanded the commuting radius to allow current residential students who live beyond 30 miles of campus the opportunity to commute for the 2020–21 academic year. A staggered move-in and modified orientation schedule will be developed. Plans for these will be communicated soon.

Health Protocols
The College is identifying a healthcare partner or partners who can advise and assist us with temperature-taking, testing, tracing, and managing suspected or confirmed cases should they occur on campus. More information will be shared when the partnership has been finalized. Protocols for dining, masking, physical distancing, and pedestrian flow are being developed, and there will be an educational campaign to promote these habits and hygiene practices. Learning spaces will be reconfigured so that desks and podiums can be organized to support physical distancing. Facility services already uses the proper cleaning products to disinfect spaces and is acquiring hand sanitizer stations to place throughout campus. We are bringing employees back to campus to prepare for the return of students through a phased process guided by new pandemic and employee policies that employees can find in ADP.

If there are any positive COVID-19 cases in the campus community, an alert will be issued to employees and students via email and text through the College’s emergency alert system (Omnilert) and posted to the LVC website and social media. Even in instances when the risk is low, we want to ensure all members of our community have the information they need to make decisions about their well-being.

Future Communications
Virtual town halls will be held throughout the summer for returning and new students, faculty, staff, trustees, leadership council members, and prospective students to hear directly from campus leadership and have their questions answered.

Additionally, faculty, staff, students, families, and trustees will regularly receive an LVC Forward e-newsletter with information about the latest decisions and developments. All updates and alerts will be posted to a new LVC Forward blog on the LVC website as well. This searchable space will serve as a hub for all information related to our return to campus and strategic initiatives that unfold as part of the process.

The College will continue to adapt and add detail to the plans as we receive additional guidance from the federal government, the PA Department of Health and Department of Education, the NCAA and MAC Conference, and any healthcare partners. The remaining unknowns and uncertainties require us all to remain flexible and agile so that we can quickly adjust to new circumstances as needed.

My tenure at the College concludes at the end of this month. Dorry and I are so grateful to have been a part of this community, which delivers one of the finest educational experiences in the nation. You can be confident that LVC is welcoming a leader who has proven experience in managing a crisis. Dr. MacLaren was instrumental in Tulane University’s recovery after Hurricane Katrina. He and his wife, Gina, will arrive in Annville very soon. With his leadership and the enduring dedication and resilience of all, LVC will emerge from this global crisis stronger than ever.

Warmly, 
President Thayne 

Faculty Principles for a Successful Fall

Our college’s educational mission and the importance of supporting our students are the foundations for our academic approach to this upcoming semester. The COVID academic response faculty task force has developed these guidelines to help all of us as faculty guide our planning for what will be an unusual fall for everyone. We value the experience of meeting with our students face to face, and we hope to preserve that experience as much as possible, while also respecting scientific developments and individual health concerns.

Here are some principles for a successful fall: 

1) A Confident & Flexible Mindset: This fall, we will need to cater to various student audiences, including students who may become ill, may need to self-quarantine, or who may be immunocompromised and therefore unable to attend any in-person classes. This means that all classes must be able to be delivered both in-person and online at the same time. We need to have online learning components as developed and polished as possible before the semester begins. Building out our courses’ Canvas structure and content over the summer will minimize the stress produced by these potential fall events, and will better enable us to give our all of our students the support and attention they will need from day one. The online course development institute will help us all plan for how to create clear and compelling course content to address the diverse needs of our students.

2)  Clear Course Outcomes: What can students expect to learn from our classes? Why does this course matter? Student motivation is critical in these uncertain times, so we need to be clear about what students will get from their time with us regardless of modality. This means putting all of our course objectives front and center so that students understand what they’re learning and why it matters. This clarity in outcomes is good for students, because it increases motivation, and also good for us as instructors because it encourages us to be intentional in framing our in-person and online components to lead back to course objectives and student learning, which is the heart of our mission.  

3) Authentic LVC: Faculty Mentoring & More: Students come to us for a personalized, engaged, supportive education. Our students benefit from classes that create a community of learners, active learning strategies, one-on-one contact with professors, frequent interaction with other students, and access to the many supports for learning that we provide, like counseling, tutoring, library resources, and accessibility services. An LVC education delivered in any modality retains all of these strengths. We, as faculty, will need to be thoughtful and intentional in how we make sure that the LVC promise is fulfilled for all students, even in unprecedented circumstances.  The Online Course Development Institute will help all of us to develop courses that create these connections online.

4) Relational Education: Personalized attention is a hallmark of an LVC education. There are ways to create such relationships in different modalities. Just a few ideas to consider include: require office hour attendance or set up one-on-one appointments in the first two weeks to get to know your students individually; incentivize office hour attendance in the participation grade or extra credit; in online components, include some synchronous discussions with clear expectations for participation and engagement; create small group projects or activities that encourage students to connect with you and with each other. The Online Course Development Institute will help us create courses that foster these important connections. 

5) Support for Student Success: Many students are experiencing a great deal of stress due to the current situation, driven by various factors like economic anxiety, career prospects, family obligations and fears, and general uncertainty. Consider how you can support student success in your classes through practices like 1) including early, low-stakes assignments that allow students to gauge expectations and change behaviors early in the course, 2) minimizing dependence on high-stakes assignments, 3) incentivizing or integrating campus support services like study pods, 4) scaffolding large assignments to help students manage their time and produce better final products, and 5) monitoring student attendance and performance, and sending a CARE referral when concerns arise. 

6)  Streamlining the e-Delivery of Learning Materials: To whatever degree possible, use Canvas and LVC-supported supplemental technology. This will reduce the learning curve for students. Students are enrolled in 4-5 fall courses; if every course is using different styles of communication, organization, and varied technological tools, then students have to spend extra time learning and adjusting to each course’s particularities when that time could have been spent on the course’s content and skills. The online learning task force is working to provide guidance in this area so that we are able to honor academic freedom/disciplinary choices while being student-centered.

Know that the two faculty COVID response task forces (academic response & online learning) are working to enable successful fall for all the members of our LVC community. We will be in frequent communication, and you may also reach out to our faculty liaisons:

Academic Response TF liaison: Laura Eldred, eldred@lvc.edu
Online Learning/Digital Divide TF liaison: TBD

Our best wishes for a safe and successful year,

The members of the COVID academic response faculty task force:
Patrick Brewer
Monica Cowart (Chair)
Deanna Dodson
Tom Dompier
Laura Eldred
Jen Kanupka
Courtney Lappas
Joerg Meindl
Renee Norris
Wally Patton
Jeff Robbins

Employee Handbook—Returning to Campus After COVID-19 [PDF]

Employees should review this handbook before returning to campus and continue to follow the guidelines while working on campus.

LVC-Returning-to-Campus-Handbook-2020June1

Protective Equipment

The best defense against contracting or spreading the COVID-19 virus lies in your own hands—literally. By following recommendations for the use of facemasks when physical distancing is not possible, frequent hand washing, avoiding touching your face, and maintaining recommended social distancing, you will provide yourself with significant protection.

Face Masks

  • As a courtesy, we will distribute one cloth (washable/reusable) face mask to all students at the beginning of the semester.
  • Students and employees will provide their own cloth face masks for use on campus just as they have for use in other public spaces.
  • We will provide additional face masks (as needed) to those employees where frequent face mask use is required.
  • LVC has secured a stock of disposable face masks to be used if someone has forgotten or misplaced their own.


Gloves

  • Gloves will be provided where the use of gloves is a requirement of the job function.
  • In general, the use of gloves for repeated tasks not related to housekeeping is not recommended.


Physical Barriers (Sneeze Guards)

  • Locations where individual staff or students interact in close proximity for an extended conversation or exchange materials such as payments or documents—or areas with high volumes of interactions—will be candidates for the installation of a physical barrier.
  • The exact size and configuration will be determined based on the actual use of the space. These locations will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.

Planning for the Academic Experience

Provost Cowart has convened four task forces to focus on planning for stabilization in the fall semester and transformation and innovation in the short- and long-term.

1. COVID-19 Academic Response Task Force (Stabilization Phase)

Committee Members: Patrick Brewer, Deanna Dodson, Tom Dompier, Laura Eldred, Jennifer Kanupka, Courtney Lappas, Joerg Meindl, Renee Norris, Wally Patton, Jeff Robbins

This group will focus on using Governor Wolf’s guidelines for PA colleges and universities, recommendations from accrediting bodies, and recommendations from other key organizations, such as the CDC, to help guide the formation of an academic plan for next year. The task force will create COVID-specific protocols and recommendations to guide faculty in delivering a student-centered learning experience that assumes an in-person fall start.

Sample Questions:

  • What are the major challenges departments have identified regarding the fall semester?
  • What academic guidelines, policies or protocols do we need to augment or create?
  • What lessons have we learned from going online this spring that will inform our strategy for fall?
  • How do we best prioritize classes for in-person teaching if we have a hybrid curriculum?
  • How do we ensure that our plans are truly student-centered (i.e., focused on student needs and best interests)?
  • What guidance will we provide for the possibility of multiple “pivots” so that high quality learning outcomes are preserved?
  • How do we prioritize academic rigor while still meeting student needs?


2. Online Learning & Digital Strength Task Force (Stabilization Phase)

Committee Members: Maureen Bentz, Jasmine Bucher, Ivette Guzman Zavala, Jennifer Kuntz, Dave Shapiro, Susan Tammaro, Lori Thomas, Keith Veenhuizen, Holly Wendt

This group is examining how LVC’s online policies and pedagogical choices can address current challenges while further affirming our institutional commitment to inclusive excellence and student success. It is determining what policies, practices, and professional development opportunities are needed to help faculty members create first-rate online learning opportunities for our students. The team is also examining how LVC can address student needs, especially for those students who lack adequate resources or need help obtaining hardware, Internet, etc.


3. Task Force on College-wide Innovation (Transformation & Innovation Phase)

Committee Members: Eva Frank, Claudia Gazsi, Stacy Goodman, John Hinshaw, Kimberlee Josephson, Jeff Leferriere, Robert Machado, Lou Manza, Tonya Miller, Justin Morell

This task force is focusing on the ways in which LVC must continue to grow, innovate, and transform, especially given current conditions, to thrive in the coming years.

Sample Questions:

  • What unexpected opportunities are emerging as a result of the pandemic and the current state of higher education? How can LVC leverage those opportunities in a mission-driven, strategic manner?
  • What new academic programs need to be developed to meet current and emerging regional needs?
  • What potential non-credit bearing opportunities are there for revenue generation?
  • Could part of the undergraduate curriculum include hybrid and online classes for residential undergraduates? if so what should the target be?
  • How could summer be used more effectively to accelerate degree completion more quickly?
  • What “innovation-opportunities” exist outside of program development?
  • What is the role of community partnerships in our overall strategy? What relationships are in place and what key relationships with community leaders need to be developed/cultivated?
  • How do we innovate and transform while staying true to LVC’s core identity and traditions?
  • What approval process can be created to “test” or “pilot” promising ideas?


4. Task Force on Non-Credit Bearing Opportunities (Transformation & Innovation Phase)

Committee Members: Philip Bensech, Kristen Boeshore, Andrew Hildebrand, Joel Kline, Gabriella McEvoy, Justin Mierzwicki, Cindy Vejar, Ken Yarnall

This task force is focusing on the ways in which LVC can continue to grow, innovate, and transform to thrive in the coming years. Specifically, this task force will examine a variety of non-credit bearing opportunities (i.e., bootcamps, certificates, trainings, seminars, CEU opportunities, licensure test prep, etc.) and determine how these opportunities can be part of LVC’s strategy for success.

Sample Questions:

  • What unexpected opportunities are emerging as a result of the pandemic, the current state of higher education, and industry needs in our area? How can LVC leverage those opportunities in a mission-driven, strategic manner?
  • What potential non-credit bearing opportunities are a good institutional fit while also generating revenue? Which opportunities can be developed and launched quickly? Which ones require a long term strategy?
  • How could summer be used more effectively to leverage these opportunities?
  • What is the role of community partnerships in our overall strategy? What relationships are already in place and what key relationships with community leaders need to be developed/cultivated? What are our partners saying they need regarding employee professional development, etc.?
  • What do community members or current students state that they need regarding non-credit bearing opportunities? How can we address these needs?
  • How can LVC’s non-credit bearing strategy be nimble yet coordinated?
  • How do we innovate and transform while staying true to LVC’s core identity and traditions?

Planning for an In-person Fall 2020 Start

May 6, 2020

Dear LVC Community,

As this historic Spring 2020 semester draws to a close, I am inspired by the accomplishments and agility of our students, their families, faculty, and staff. You have overcome challenges and adapted to often daily changes requiring strength of mind, body, emotion, and spirit. It has been an honor to lead the College for eight years and to once again see LVC at its best

Now the College has begun in earnest to prepare for what comes next. I am happy to report that the College is deep into planning for an in-person start of the fall 2020 semester. The College’s senior leadership and Critical Incident & Emergency Management Team are developing several scenarios for opening up LVC gradually over the summer. These plans will be based on guidance the Pennsylvania Department of Health expects to release May 15, as well as recommendations from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention. We are also vetting potential partners to advise and assist with any needed mitigation strategies.

The team is working closely with incoming president Dr. James MacLaren to define the next eight weeks, and he will take the lead on planning for the next academic year. His experience as part of the team that led Tulane University Katrina-recovery efforts will be invaluable to this process.

The scenarios we are outlining will be flexible. Scheduling may change to reduce density in classrooms and labs. Residence halls may hold fewer students, and there might temporarily be more commuters. Even though the way students learn in the fall will likely be different from how it has been in the past, rest assured that Lebanon Valley College is committed to maintaining the same level of personalized attention it has always given to students. Student affairs will develop co-curricular programming to maintain the community connectedness that makes LVC so special. Learning outcomes will not change, and students will be on the same path to graduate on-time and fully prepared for their careers or post-graduate studies.

There are still many unknowns, including questions related to athletics, student worker opportunities for fall, move-in and Orientation, dining services, and the status of the virus and its spread. As conditions change, LVC will keep you informed.

Please continue to practice physical distancing, and encourage each other—remotely—as we show the world what it means to be #LVCStrong.

Warmest Regards,

President Lewis E. Thayne