Message from EVP Howarth - Campus Update
- Susan I. Howarth
- Wednesday, August 19th, 2020
Dear Faculty and Staff:
As we quickly approach the first day of classes, I am writing to thank you for all you have done to prepare WKU for the return of students to the Hill. I also want to provide some updated information on campus procedures and services.
- Staff employees should continue to work within the framework of their department/unit restart plans. Such plans may include on-campus and remote work or a combination thereof.
- Staff employees are encouraged to work with their respective supervisors to design work arrangements that are productive and accommodating to child care or other needs. In situations where agreement is not reached, employees may make an alternative work arrangement request for review through administrative channels. The request form is available here. Where appropriate, employees may also request a disability-related accommodation through the Office of Equal Employment Opportunity/University ADA Services.
- Sick Leave:
- Employees should use sick leave as usual when sick or caring for a sick family member as defined in our university medical leave policy.
- Employees who are unable to work (on-campus or remote) because of the reasons noted below are NOT required to use accumulated sick leave:
- have tested positive for COVID-19;
- subject to a federal, state, or local quarantine or isolation order related to COVID-19;
- advised by a health care provider to self-quarantine due to COVID-19 illness or exposure;
- experiencing COVID-19 symptoms and seeking a medical diagnosis;
- caring for an individual subject to an isolation order or self-quarantine
- Top Life Pledge CY 2020:
- If you enrolled in the WKU Employee Health Plan for CY2020 and accepted the Top Life pledge, you and your spouse/partner, if applicable, must complete the Tier II wellness requirements by September 1, 2020.
- Go to www.toplifewellness.com to login and review your rewards status.
- Contact HealthFitness Customer Service at 1-800-616-2136, M-F, 7a-7p, for assistance.
- Benefits CY2021:
- Open enrollment will be October 12 – 23, 2020.
- There will be no premium increases associated with the Health Plan, and coverage will remain similar to 2020.
- If you enroll in the Health Plan for CY2021 during Open Enrollment and accept the Top Life pledge, you will be required to complete only one Tier I activity before winter break – the Vitality Health Review (online health assessment). The Vitality Check (biometric screening) will be included in Tier II activities and is optional.
- COVID-19 Antibody Testing will also be included in Tier II activities and is optional. Participants who complete a COVID-19 antibody test on-campus or with their health provider before the launch of the new portal (Vitality) and wellness program year on October 1 will be able to upload documentation of the test into their account on/after 10/1/20 and receive wellness points.
- Disinfecting Kit Refill Process:
- The DFM ESAs will refill kit components during routine cleaning cycles if the kit is accessible.
- Between cleaning cycles, you can call the DFM front desk at extension 5-3253 between 7:30 AM and 4:30 PM or submit a work order (submission) and an ESA porter will refill your kit.
- You are always welcome to stop by the DFM front desk for a refill of any kit item.
- NOTE: For the satellite campuses where DFM does not provide your custodial service, you may stop by the DFM front desk on main campus, call, or submit a work request with a point of contact (POC) to arrange for refills of your kit materials.
- iWKU Update:
- The iWKU app gives you mobile access to all kinds of useful information about WKU,including WKU News, dining options and a campus directory.
- The latest version, available in the App Store or on Google Play, now includes a COVID-19 Information section where you’ll find links to COVID-19 resources such as our Healthy on the Hill site, reporting contact information, and a COVID-19 self-check.
- You can use the self-check as a daily reminder of COVID-19 symptoms and Kentucky Healthy At Work guidance.
- Postal Services, Printing, Masks in Vending Machines, and Transit:
- Postal Services hope to resume campus deliveries by September 1. They are in the process of hiring students for delivery services.
- Liberty Printing, who operates the campus Print Shop, is operating from their off-campus location to maintain social distancing guidelines. Orders may be submitted online at wku.edu/printing. Liberty will deliver to campus.
- Vending machines throughout campus are stocked with disposable masks. Contact Marshall Gray for additional information [270-745-6185; firstname.lastname@example.org].
- Reminder that new transit routes are in place for the fall. Please help remind students to allow extra time to reach their classes. For more information, visithttps://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YrmN6bEfIL4 orhttps://www.wku.edu/transportation/pts_covid19.php
We are all aware of the ever-changing landscape related to the COVID-19 virus. Many aspects we cannot control, but some are very much in our control. Namely, wear your mask, stay six feet apart, and wash your hands. Also, be kind to and respectful of others, which includes asking those who are not wearing a face covering or staying socially distanced to do so. Your reminder is an act of kindness for everyone.
In the WKU Strategic Plan Climbing to Greater Heights, we wrote “The landscape for public higher education is ever changing and may at times feel like an uphill climb.” At the time, we did not realize just how much and how rapidly things can change, nor how steep the climb can seem. Insightfully, we also wrote “We will prepare ourselves to meet the challenges that lie ahead by pursuing innovation in teaching and delivery, connecting what we do to the region and the commonwealth, and ensuring that the WKU Experience transforms the lives of our students, employees, alumni, and friends and elevates the communities we serve - both in our region and beyond.” We have certainly been innovative with our teaching and delivery. Despite the inability to meet in groups, we have maintained and even enhanced our connections to each other. By working harmoniously together, we will continue to transform lives in the spirit of WKU Hilltoppers! Have a safe and successful semester!
Susan I. Howarth | Executive Vice President
Division of Strategy, Operations and Finance