Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19) Resources and Updates

Updated

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and World Health Organization (WHO) continue to monitor a novel strain of coronavirus that originated in Wuhan, China. On Feb. 11, 2020, the World Health Organization announced an official name for the disease that is causing the novel coronavirus outbreak, COVID-19.

Brenau University officials are proactively working with local and state public health organizations to monitor this concern and to protect the health and well-being of the Brenau community. This resource page will continue to be updated as new or relevant information emerges.

View the complete Coronavirus Preparedness & Response Plan (PDF).

Contact Brenau University Nurse Practitioner Sarah Davis at sdavis8@brenau.edu with health-related questions or concerns.

Sign up for Brenau’s E2Campus alert system to stay up to date on this and other important campus notifications by text, phone or email.

Aug. 20, 2020

Aug. 10, 2020

Aug. 6, 2020

Update –

We have moved our FAQ section to our Brenau Moving Forward Fall 2020 page.

July 30, 2020

July 23, 2020

July 17, 2020

Update –

Updated our Resources below to include a CARES Act information section.

June 24, 2020

Update –

Brenau University is excited to announce our plans for re-opening campus for the Fall 2020 semester. Please visit our Brenau Moving Forward Fall 2020 webpage for more information and check back often. We will update the page when new information is available.

June 11, 2020

June 3, 2020

Update –

FAQ updated to reflect that graduation is not canceled.

Update –

A Message from Anne A. Skleder regarding Recent Developments in Hall and Gwinnett Counties

Greetings,

I trust that you and your loved ones are well during these unprecedented days of flux and in finding our new normal. Thank you for doing your part in helping to prevent the spread of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). Here are a few updates:

  • As many of you are aware, Northeast Georgia Health System (NGHS) physicians and board members – along with Hall County and city of Gainesville elected officials – are collectively urging residents to stay home for at least 14 days to slow the spread of the virus. I have discussed the ramifications of this request with relevant members of the university’s leadership team and COVID-19 Task Force. With our dining facilities offering “take out” only and with the stringent protocols we have in place for essential staff and our remaining students on campus, we have met and largely exceeded these requests that are in place through Friday, April 10. Read more on the City of Gainesville website.
  • In addition, we have posted signs throughout campus to notify any visitors, who we would normally would welcome to campus, that for their safety and the safety of the students and staff remaining on campus, that we would ask them to refrain from visiting at this time.
  • Nearby Gwinnett County has put in place mandatory stay at home orders. Many of Brenau University’s faculty, staff and students live in that county and will be impacted by this decision. Read more on Gwinnett County’s website.
  • I implore each of you to do your part to flatten the curve by physical distancing while being mindful of the important social solidarity component during this time. I encourage you to keep in touch in all possible ways with our community. It is critical for our physical and mental health. If you have any questions throughout this time, faculty and staff please direct them to your area vice president. Students can submit questions on our FAQ page. Please also know that you can always reach me directly.

As always, please remember that the best thing you can do is follow these common sense measures consistent with advice from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention:

  • Wash your hands frequently with soap and water. Use hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available.
  • Stay home when you are sick and seek medical attention if symptoms worsen.
  • Avoid close contact with those who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
  • Cover your mouth when coughing or sneezing into your sleeve or a tissue.
  • Clean and disinfect surfaces.
  • Get a flu shot.

Thank you for doing your part as together we ensure we are doing our best to keep our university community healthy and doing our part to decrease the spread of the COVID-19 virus. Together, we can make a difference four our university and our communities.

Anne A. Skleder, President

Update –

Updated FAQ to address when room and board refunds will be issued.

Update –

All face-to-face Brenau events are either canceled or postponed until further notice. As Brenau is open and operational online, we will continue to host many events held in new and creative ways for current and future students, faculty and staff, alumni, and members of the community.

Update –

To serve you better we’ve moved our FAQs to their own page. This new page includes a submission form in case we didn’t already answer your questions.

Update –

FAQ updated to confirm secondary exposure on the Gainesville East campus.

Update –

Updated FAQs to include online learning questions.

Update –

  • FAQ below updated to included when answers were last updated.
  • Resource sections below updated to include list of frequently used contact information.
  • Navigation links added throughout.

Update –

FAQ below updated to reflect student secondary exposure in Norcross.

Update –

FAQ below has been updated to reflect:

  • all events canceled through April 12
  • information about nursing clinicals
  • additional information about online bill pay

Update –

FAQ below has been updated to reflect moving to online learning process.

Update –

All Brenau campuses to move to digital learning and support beginning March 23

In order to protect the health and safety of the community during the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak, Brenau University will suspend on-ground classes beginning Monday, March 16, and shift to an online learning and support process on Monday, March 23.

There have been no cases of COVID-19 on any Brenau campus. The decision was made by university officials out of an abundance of caution and following the World Health Organization on Wednesday offering necessary guidance and labeling the novel coronavirus outbreak a worldwide pandemic.

On-ground classes and experiential learning, including internships and clinicals, will continue through tomorrow, Friday, March 13. When possible, faculty will provide alternative ways for students to satisfy these remaining requirements. All classes that can be taught online will be starting Monday, March 23, at all campuses and levels. Current online courses will continue uninterrupted.

In order to mitigate possible exposure to the virus, all students who are able to leave campus will be required to leave. The university will assist in a move from campus to home by Sunday, March 22. For those students who need to remain on campus, a waiver request is available and the university will do its best to provide them with individual single rooms.

Faculty and most staff will work remotely beginning Monday, March 23.

Effective immediately, faculty, staff and student-only events through the remainder of the semester are canceled. All Gainesville community events scheduled to be held on Brenau Gainesville campuses through April 3 are canceled. Future Gainesville community events will be evaluated on a weekly basis beginning Monday, April 6.

All spring extracurricular activities, including athletic practices and games, are canceled for the balance of the spring semester.

Questions regarding the university’s response to COVID-19 can be directed to Ben McDade at bmcdade@brenau.edu.

 

Additional information for students and employees

Update –

The Brenau University COVID-19 Task Force is proactively working with local and state public health organizations to monitor the novel coronavirus (COVID-19), to protect the health and well-being of the Brenau community, and to prevent the potential spread of illness.

Out of an abundance of caution, today we are announcing three decisions to limit potential exposure to our campus community and protect the health of all community members.

These policies are in effect immediately and until further notice:

  • Following recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Brenau University will postpone indefinitely upcoming functions “with attendees from multiple states or to states or locales that have declared a State of Emergency / Public Health Emergency due to the virus.” This includes but is not limited to:
    • The opening reception for “L.A. Stories” on Thursday, March 12
    • Colossal Prints on Friday, March 13
    • Opera Workshop: “Goldilocks and the Three Bears” on Friday, March 13
    • Dempsey Dash 5K and 1K Fun Run on Saturday, March 14
    • Brenau Cotillion on Saturday, March 14
    • Women’s Leadership Colloquium on Friday, March 20
  • To maintain our vigilant dedication to the health and well-being of our community, Brenau has suspended all university-sponsored domestic and international commercial travel to include airplanes, trains, ships and local public buses as of March 11.
  • Brenau also strongly discourages nonessential personal domestic and international commercial travel to include airplanes, trains, ships and local public buses. Students, employees and partner vendors who choose to engage in these types of travel are required to self-report to the University Nurse Practitioner and self-quarantine for 14 days upon return.

Frequently Asked Questions

FAQ and question submission form can be found on out Brenau Moving Forward Fall 2020 page.

CARES Act Information

The recently enacted CARES Act created Emergency Relief Funds for some college students who experienced a disruption in on-campus instruction as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. Brenau has been designated to receive a limited amount of these funds to distribute to students. Eligibility requirements were set by the U.S. government to identify which students may receive these grants. The requirements are that students 1) were enrolled in on-ground classes on March 13, 2020, 2) have a valid FAFSA on file that confirms they are a U.S. citizen or an eligible permanent resident, and 3) experienced some level of additional costs associated with changing from on-campus to online programs.

Brenau has reviewed all spring semester registration records to determine which students meet the eligibility requirements for this grant. An email containing an electronic grant application will be sent to all eligible students by midnight on May 20. Eligible students will be asked to respond to the notification by completing the application as soon as possible but no later than Friday, May 29, 2020.

Once applications are received and processed, recipients will be notified of the grant amount to expect and funds will be forwarded to them using the preference students have selected with BankMobile.

For more information, contact Pam Barrett, associate vice president and director of Financial Aid, at 770-534-6152 or financialaid@brenau.edu.

Will Students Receive CARES Act Emergency Relief Funds?

Brenau has reviewed all spring semester registration records to determine which students meet the eligibility requirements for this grant. An email containing an electronic grant application will be sent to all eligible students by midnight on May 20. Eligible students will be asked to respond to the notification by completing the application as soon as possible but no later than Friday, May 29, 2020.

Once applications are received and processed, recipients will be notified of the grant amount to expect and funds will be forwarded to them using the preference students have selected with BankMobile.

Eligibility requirements were set by the US government to identify which students may receive these grants. The requirements are that students:

  1. were enrolled in on-ground classes on March 13, 2020,
  2. have a valid FAFSA on file that confirms they are a US citizen or eligible permanent resident,
  3. experienced some level of additional costs associated with changing from on-campus to online programs.
Further CARES Act information
  1. Brenau submitted a signed Certification and Agreement on April 15, 2020 , indicating intent to use no less than 50% of funds received under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act to provide emergency financial aid grants to students.
  2. Brenau received a total of $1,283,197 from the CARES Act, of which $641,599 was allocated for emergency financial aid grants to students.
  3. On May 20, 2020, an email notification was sent to 1093 eligible Brenau students who met the following criteria:
    • Met basic qualifications for Federal Student Aid programs under Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965;
    • Confirmed U.S. citizen or eligible non-citizen status by existence of Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) that cleared all applicable citizenship matches (international students and those falling under DACA not eligible); and
    • Enrolled in on-ground instruction for spring semester 2020 as of March 13, 2020, the COVOD-19 National Emergency declaration date (student enrolled exclusively in online instruction not eligible).

    Students were invited to complete a simple online application, attesting to having incurred expenses (yes or no) associated with the COVID-19 disruption of campus-based instruction, and selecting from a list of possible types of expenses incurred (no amounts requested). Application deadline: May 29,2020.

  4. All students who submitted “yes” responses were divided into 5 separate groups according to Expected Family Contribution (EFC) on the FAFSA, with funds being allocated in a way that provided the highest grant amounts to students with the lowest EFCs.
  5. A total of$641,599.81 in CARES Act emergency financial aid grants was distributed as refunds to 746 eligible students on June 12, 2020.

Updated

Counseling & Support Services

This is a stressful time. We understand some Brenau community members may feel anxious about this evolving public health situation, and you may have concerns about friends and family living in areas currently experiencing the outbreak. Students are encouraged to contact any or all of the following resources:

Brenau Center for Counseling and Psychological Services

The Brenau Center for Counseling and Psychological Services (BCCPS), with campus locations both in Gainesville and North Atlanta (see below), provides the following services to Brenau students, staff, faculty, and alums as well as individuals in the community:

  • Individual counseling
  • Family counseling
  • Couples counseling
  • Child counseling
  • Psychological assessment and testing for all ages
  • Stress management
  • Group therapy

Learn more about the BCCPS on their webpage.

Mental Health Resources

Self-Quarantine Policy

Out of an abundance of caution, we ask Brenau students, faculty and staff who have traveled in CDC Level 2 or Level 3 areas (despite the strong urging not to do so) or whose household members are returning from those areas, even if asymptomatic, not to return to the university (including any activities on- or off-campus) until a 14-day period has elapsed following their return to the United States. This policy is consistent with the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s recommendations. If you travel to these areas or after exposure or diagnosis, we ask you to self report, via email to University Nurse Practitioner (sdavis8@brenau.edu) We also ask Brenau’s students, faculty and staff to notify us if anyone in their household has a COVID-19 diagnosis, has come in contact with someone who has traveled to a country under a CDC travel advisory or has come in contact with someone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19.

What Does it Mean to Self-Quarantine?

Self-Quarantine is an agreement to remain at home and not to go to work or school, limiting your movements outside and monitoring your health for 14 days after returning from travel to CDC Level 2 or 3 Travel Warning locations. You are agreeing to isolate yourself from others to limit any potential for transmission of the virus, even if you are not experiencing symptoms at the end of your travel. For the most up-to-date information about prevention and treatment, visit the CDC online. Again, University travel to these areas is prohibited and personal travel to these areas is strongly discouraged

What are some general self-quarantine guidelines?

Stay at home and do not go to class or work, participate in any campus activities or come to campus. (For students, the university is developing an academic continuity plan and if you have questions, you are encouraged to reach out to your academic advisors and professors about your classes.)

  • Stay at home except to get medical care, and please call ahead before visiting your doctor.
  • Avoid public areas including grocery stores, malls, theaters and large public gathering spaces.
  • Separate yourself from other people and animals in your home.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze; wash your hands afterward with soap and water or use an alcohol-based sanitizer.
  • Clean your hands often with soap and water or with an alcohol-based sanitizer; use soap and water preferentially if your hands are visibly dirty.
  • Avoid sharing personal household items.
  • Clean “high-touch” surfaces daily with a household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Monitor your symptoms, and if they develop or worsen, then call your health care provider BEFORE seeking in-person care.

Brenau is a strong and caring community. With the help of all, we will navigate these days together.

Updated

General inquiries: info@brenau.edu or +1-800-252-5119 | Admissions: admissions@brenau.edu or +1-800-252-5119 ext. 6100
Brenau University is accredited by the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools Commission on Colleges.