University Communication to Students
Distributed: September 10, 2020
Posted: September 11, 2020
We are now past the drop add period, and I am hopeful that this week is
bringing some degree of routine to your semester. Allegheny County and the
state of Pennsylvania are both reporting an increase in COVID-19 cases.
So, it is important that we remain vigilant.
The new academic format has raised some questions that we will address in
As a reminder, information is regularly being updated on the COVID-19 landing
page of Carlow’s website.
In response to some of your recent questions, answers are noted below:
Use of Common Campus Spaces
common areas, including computer labs and University Commons study
areas, are open and available for student use. To facilitate social distancing,
modifications have been made limiting the amount of space available.
If coming to campus, we ask that you are screened upon arrival and that you
follow guidelines (wear a mask, social distance, practice good hand hygiene,
and clean spaces you use before and after use). Additionally, library study
spaces are open 24 hours a day in University Commons, where there also are
private study rooms available. Library doors are unlocked all hours except the
hours between 4:30 p.m. on Friday until 2 p.m. on Sunday. It is staffed from
10 a.m. - 7 p.m. on Monday thru Thursday and from 2-9 p.m. on Sunday. No staff
is in the library on Saturdays.
COVID-19 Policy Clarification
To provide greater clarity, we have updated the COVID-19 student handbook
policy. Included is the following:
Given the extreme threat to health and safety presented by the COVID-19
virus, the University reserves the right to use of interim residence hall
and campus removal measures immediately while alleged violations are
investigated. Students choosing not to follow these policy guidelines
below can expect to be directed to vacate campus for quarantine or
isolation, shift to digital-only class attendance, and cease internship or
practical training attendance while the matter is being reviewed. Those
found in violation of the policy may have their housing contracts revoked,
including on a first offense, be directed to digital class attendance
only, or face suspension from the University.
The Allegheny County Health Department (ACHD) will be doing tracing and has
assured us they are able to provide the contact tracing for smaller
universities, such as Carlow University. If someone tests positive, they are
the only one who can disclose their medical status to the University. If
students, they are advised to inform all their instructors.
If there is a positive case in a class, the class may or may not proceed. If
there has been adequate social distancing in the classroom (minimum of 6
feet), and everyone has been regularly screened in every class (i.e., they
have their "I've been screened" sticker proudly showing), and everyone is
ensuring that all students are wearing their masks throughout the class, class
would likely not have to be cancelled. ACHD will contact everyone who would be
considered a close contact of a positive case (within 6 feet of a positive
case for at least 15 minutes, regardless of the presence of face masks). So,
if you have tested positive for COVID-19, please cooperate fully with the
contact tracing efforts.
Modifications to pedestrian flow have been made on campus to help with social
distancing. However, if students find they are unable to access spaces for
learning or accessibility, accommodations are available. One such example is
walking from Curran Hall to the upper campus.
Students who need to request access or
accommodations, or who have questions, should contact Jackie Smith, Director
of Disabilities Services, at
Every request will be assessed on a case-by-case basis and according to
current evaluation protocols in each office.
Our hope is that these updates will assist your success during this
Timothy P. Phillips, PhD
Vice President of Student Affairs & Dean of Students