COVID-19 Information

See the latest updates and information regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, including a list of University contact information at semo.edu/covid19.

Frequently Asked Questions

 

CARES Act

The Federal Department of Education released several documents related to the recent Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, including a letter from U.S. Secretary of Education Betsy DeVos which provides an overview of the release of funds related to emergency student grant aid.  In the letter, it stressed Institutions of Higher Education will establish their own process for distributing the aid to students, but institutions are encouraged to prioritize students with the greatest need and set a maximum funding threshold for individual students. Southeast Missouri is working diligently to insure access to these funds as quickly as possible and is currently determining which students will be eligible to receive these funds.  Additional information regarding criteria will be shared with students and the University community as decisions are made. Visit here to find out eligibility requirements and how to apply.

 

Health and Wellness

Facilities Management continues to complete high-touch cleaning throughout campus. This includes:

  • Cleaning and disinfecting all restrooms and shower rooms
  • Disinfecting all high touch areas (door handles, student desks, light switches, etc.)
  • Trash Removal
  • Cleaning entrance areas
  • Cleaning public areas
  • Cleaning classrooms (floors and walls)
  • Cleaning offices, specifically:
    • Emptying trash containers and cleaning trash cans as needed.
    • Sweeping, mopping, vacuuming and dusting.
    • Spot cleaning carpet, desks and tables.
  • Additional cleaning practices in areas such as open computer labs are being enhanced (e.g. Lab Assistants have always wiped down keyboards and mice with sanitizing wipes in open computer labs. Additionally, users are now being providing wipes to clean keyboards and mice before they use them). IT staff and academic departmental staff will continue wiping down computer labs.

Call your doctor:  If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19 and develop a fever and symptoms, such as cough or difficulty breathing, call your healthcare provider for medical advice.

Follow the CDC's steps on What To Do if You Are Sick. This site provides an interactive Self-Checker feature to help you make decisions about seekign appropriate medical care.

 

Follow these basic preventative measures to avoid exposure to or infection by the virus causing COVID-19. 

 
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid sharing personal items, like water bottles.
  • Use alcohol-based wipes to clean areas that you frequently touch.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not available.
  • Practice social distancing.
  • Consider getting a flu shot if you have not already done so. While the flu vaccine will not prevent getting the novel coronavirus, it will help reduce flu-like illnesses.
 Do not congregate in groups; practice good coughing and sneezing etiquette by coughing or sneezing into an elbow; perform routine environmental cleaning; practice good hand hygiene and wash hands frequently; practice social distancing and avoid contact with people; do  not travel; and stay home if you are sick.
 
  • Stay home when you are sick and rest. If symptoms worsen, contact your primary care provider.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash and wash hands immediately.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

 

Classroom/Academics

The Center for Scholarship in Teaching and Learning (CSTL) website has several guides available for Moodle.

Information Technology (IT) has guides and resources related to technology available to faculty and students.

There are numerous companies that are making tools and resources available to education during this time for no cost in many cases. CSTL will be adding those resources to the website as they become aware of them. If you are aware of any such tools that might be beneficial, please email that info to cstlsupport@semo.edu 

Faculty with questions regarding the transition to remote delivery and instructional technologies should contact CSTL in Kent Library 305 or cstlsupport@semo.edu or (573) 651-2298.

Many companies that work with higher education institutions are working to provide internet and data services at a reduced cost or for free for a period of time. Please contact internet service providers in your area to explore if these options are available. While Southeast is not endorsing any particular company, Charter Communications is offering their 100 Mbps internet service free for 60 days to new subscriber households with K-12 and college students as well as faculty and staff. All Southeast Missouri State University students and employees are eligible. When calling about this promotion, you may have to email a copy of the promotion (https://bit.ly/2WYXnDE) to the customer service representative you are speaking with. When sending this email, copy the University’s account representative Eric Munson (Eric.Munson@charter.com) so that he can follow up on the order. Additional service provider options are available at AT&T: https://soc.att.com/2UfqlfJ; T-Mobile: https://t-mo.co/2we8gGH; and Sprint: https://sprint.co/3d28b9H.

Several University staff have trained to work as a Staff Mentor for those who want a little extra support. Staff Mentors are resources and guides -- approachable and encouraging professionals -- who will be there for you, both when things are challenging and to celebrate with you as you achieve your goals.

To request the support of a Staff Mentor, login to supportnet.semo.edu (or from Portal -> Student SS -> SupportNET Login). From the Menu, select "Request Help", then select "**Request a Staff Mentor**".

Continuation of your internships and practicums will be directed by your host institution or organization.  If it is terminated as a result of precautionary steps taken for COVID-19, please update your faculty advisor or department on the situation.

Returning Textbooks

Textbook Rental and the Southeast Bookstore have arranged no-contact drop off locations on the Southeast campuses. Students who are unable to return books in person should use the pre-paid shipping option to return books. Spring rental textbooks are still due on Monday, May 18, 2020, however, students can return books to both Textbook Rental and the Southeast Bookstore until June 2, 2020 without penalty. Students are encouraged to return books as soon as possible. Students wishing to return their spring textbooks should contact the Textbook Rental at rentabook@semo.edu.

Summer Textbooks and Course Materials

Textbook Rental and the Southeast Bookstore are offering curbside pick-up. Details on how to order your summer course materials online from Textbook Rental are available at https://semo.edu/textbookrental. For instructions to order materials online from the Southeast Bookstore visit  https://www.bkstr.com/southeastmissouriststore/shop/textbooks-and-course-materials. Textbook Rental and the Southeast Bookstore will mail your summer course materials to you at no cost if you are unable to pick them up in person.

 If you have questions about your textbooks and other course materials, please refer to the webpages listed here or email Textbook Rental at rentabook@semo.edu and the Southeast Bookstore at southeast@bkstr.com.

Kent Library has put together guides to library services for students and faculty while the library remains closed, such as finding sources online and how librarians can support online classes. 

Student Guide for Library Services: semo.libguides.com/covid-19-student

Faculty Guide for Library Services: semo.libguides.com/covid-19-faculty

Kent Library reference services are also available virtually through chat, video appointment and email: library.semo.edu/research-help/ask-us

All Spring 2020 and Summer 2020 candidates for graduation will receive an invitation to participate in the commencement program scheduled for Dec. 19, 2020, or May 15, 2021, during which they will be formally recognized. Graduating students at all levels (undergraduate or graduate) are invited to share their favorite SEMO moment at semo.edu/senior. Faculty and staff also are invited to share memories of these students. We are planning to use these submissions to virtually recognize our Spring 2020 and Summer 2020 graduates in the days leading up to May 16, 2020, as this is the date they would have participated in commencement.

 

Residence Life

Yes. We are making plans to safely open and house students in our campus residence halls this next academic year.

Yes. Residents will be provided with information at move-in about how they will be asked to keep their rooms and floor areas clean and healthy during the year.

In addition to guidelines issued by the University on this site, we:

  • Are developing a process for scheduled move-in dates and times to limit the density of students and family members in the halls. Additional information on this process will be provided in July.
  • Will continue to perform enhanced cleaning of high-touch surfaces within the hall.

Due to social distancing guidelines, we will not have volunteers to physically help move personal belongings.

Students and their families can expect to see Residence Life staff and other campus departments available to welcome you, answer questions, and support you as you transition to living on campus.

Possibly. More information on move-in and what to expect will be provided in July. Public health recommendations change quickly and will be taken into consideration as we develop our plans

Yes! We are evaluating all hall programming and campus activities to limit group sizes while still offering plenty of opportunities to build community and get involved.

Separate isolation and quarantine spaces have been identified for residential students who are being tested or suspected of having COVID-19 related symptoms. Access to meals and academic-related materials will be coordinated with any student placed in those spaces.

 

COVID-19 Information

Coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) is a respiratory illness that can spread from person to person. The virus that causes COVID-19 is a novel coronavirus first identified during an investigation into an outbreak in Wuhan, China.

Mild to severe respiratory illness with symptoms of

  • fever
  • cough
  • shortness of breath
 

Call your doctor:  If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19 and develop a fever and symptoms, such as cough or difficulty breathing, call your healthcare provider for medical advice. While sick, avoid contact with people, don’t go out and delay any travel to reduce the possibility of spreading illness to others.

Follow the CDC's steps on What To Do if You Are Sick. This site provides an interactive Self-Checker feature to help you make decisions about seekign appropriate medical care.

 Risk of infection is dependent on exposure. Close contacts of people who are infected are at greater risk of exposure, for example health care workers and close contacts of people who are infected with the virus that causes COVID-19. If you are not in an area where COVID-19 is spreading, or if you have not travelled from an area with community spread or have not been in close contact with someone who has and is feeling unwell, your chances of getting it are currently low. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) continue to closely monitor the situation. 
 The current count of cases of COVID-19 in the United States is available on CDC’s webpage
 The virus that causes COVID-19 probably emerged from an animal source, but now it seems to be spreading from person to person. It’s important to note that person-to-person spread can happen on a continuum. Some diseases are highly contagious (like measles), while other diseases are less so. At this time, it’s unclear how easily or sustainably the virus that causes COVID-19 is spreading between people. Learn what is known about the spread of newly emerged coronaviruses.
 

Many patients have pneumonia in both lungs.

There is currently no vaccine to protect against COVID-19. The best way to prevent infection is to avoid being exposed to the virus that causes COVID-19.
 

There is no specific antiviral treatment for COVID-19. People with COVID-19 can seek medical care to help relieve symptoms.

 
  • If you are sick with COVID-19 or suspect you are infected with the virus that causes COVID-19, call ahead before visiting your doctor. If you have a medical appointment, call the healthcare provider and tell them that you have or may have COVID-19. This will help the healthcare provider’s office take steps to keep other people from getting infected or exposed.

Also, follow these steps to help prevent the disease from spreading to people in your home and community.

  • Stay home except to get medical care
  • Restrict activities outside your home, except for getting medical care. Do not go to work, school, or public areas. Avoid using public transportation, ride-sharing, or taxis.
  • Separate yourself from other people and animals in your home
    • People: As much as possible, you should stay in a specific room and away from other people in your home. Also, you should use a separate bathroom, if available.
    • Animals: Do not handle pets or other animals while sick. See COVID-19 and Animals for more information.
  • Cover your coughs and sneezes

Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw used tissues in a lined trash can; immediately wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or clean your hands with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 to 95% alcohol, covering all surfaces of your hands and rubbing them together until they feel dry. Soap and water should be used preferentially if hands are visibly dirty.

  • Avoid sharing personal household items

Do not share dishes, drinking glasses, cups, eating utensils, towels, or bedding with other people or pets in your home. After using these items, wash them thoroughly with soap and water.

  • Clean your hands often

Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, clean your hands with an alcohol-based hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol, covering all surfaces of your hands and rubbing them together until they feel dry. Soap and water should be used preferentially if hands are visibly dirty. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

  • Clean all “high-touch” surfaces every day

High touch surfaces include counters, tabletops, doorknobs, bathroom fixtures, toilets, phones, keyboards, tablets, and bedside tables. Also, clean any surfaces that may have blood, stool, or body fluids on them. Use a household cleaning spray or wipe, according to the label instructions. Labels contain instructions for safe and effective use of the cleaning product including precautions you should take when applying the product, such as wearing gloves and making sure you have good ventilation during use of the product.

  • Monitor your symptoms

Seek prompt medical attention if your illness is worsening (e.g., difficulty breathing). Before seeking care, call your healthcare provider and tell them that you have, or are being evaluated for, COVID-19. Put on a facemask before you enter the facility. These steps will help the healthcare provider’s office to keep other people in the office or waiting room from getting infected or exposed.

Ask your healthcare provider to call the local or state health department. Persons who are placed under active monitoring or facilitated self-monitoring should follow instructions provided by their local health department or occupational health professionals, as appropriate.

If you have a medical emergency and need to call 911, notify the dispatch personnel that you have, or are being evaluated for COVID-19. If possible, put on a facemask before emergency medical services arrive.

  • Discontinuing home isolation

Patients with confirmed COVID-19 should remain under home isolation precautions until the risk of secondary transmission to others is thought to be low. The decision to discontinue home isolation precautions should be made on a case-by-case basis, in consultation with healthcare providers and state and local health departments.

Source: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Contact

Mailing Address
One University Plaza, MS 7275
Cape Girardeau, Missouri 63701