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Frequently Asked Questions related to the Coronavirus

Select a topic to go directly to that section: Students | Faculty & Staff | Safety | Coronavirus | Prevention & Containment | Travel | CARES Act

Students

Online Learning

As the University makes the transition to the online learning environment, we remain committed to accessibility for students with disabilities. Disability Resources for Students and the Center for Teaching and Learning are providing resources and support for faculty as they strive to transform their courses and learn how to make those courses accessible to all students. Any student who anticipates a disability-related barrier to participation in online learning should contact Disability Resources for Students at 901.678.2880 or drs@memphis.edu. This will enable us prioritize support for the actual and immediate needs of students this semester.

Information regarding eCourseware student support is located on the Keep Learning website. The site also contains information about non-university resources that may be helpful to students during this time. The ITS Service Desk at 901.678.8888 is available for technical assistance.

Financial Aid/Student Business Services

View all information related to Financial Aid at https://www.memphis.edu/financialaid/covid19faq.php.

Health/Safety

The University has opened a COVID-19 Testing Center for only UofM students, faculty and staff who are exhibiting symptoms beginning August 17. Located at the Central to the Arts Hub, formerly the Visitors Information Center at the corner of Central and Patterson, the Center will be open Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 9 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. Testing Center access details are very specific and are provided at memphis.edu/coronavirusupdates/sick/testing.php.

Counseling: The Counseling Center is currently offering phone consultation and teletherapy appointments. Please call 901.678.2068 to speak to a counselor. Our hours are 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. If you have a crisis or emergency after 4:30 p.m., please call 901.678.HELP (4357). Please check the Counseling Center website for more information.

Health Center: To protect the campus community and student health and wellness, the Student Health Center is providing virtual appointments for patients. Visit My Patient Portal to schedule a virtual appointment, or call 901.443.1397 or 901.443.6438 between 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Virtual appointments are available from 10:30 a.m.-2 p.m., Monday through Friday. After you schedule an appointment on the MyPatient Portal, a provider will reach out with instructions for a Telehealth virtual appointment, which you may access through a personal electronic device.

If you have symptoms of coronavirus (persistent fever, cough, difficulty breathing) or had contact with a confirmed or suspected case of coronavirus, please call the Health Center at 901.443.1397 or 901.443.6438 between the hours of 9 a.m.-4:30 p.m. After hours, please call the COVID-19 public information numbers, 833.556.2476 and 877.857.2945, available from 10 a.m.-10 p.m. daily, or the 24-hour COVID-19 hotline at 800.232.4636.

In an effort to support our students, faculty and staff, the Loewenberg College of Nursing has established a designated email helpline to submit questions. The email is staffed by experienced nursing and public health faculty who will respond to any COVID-19-related questions you may have. To submit your question to the helpline, please email yourhealth@memphis.edu.

Our Housing and Residence Life (HRL) custodians are actively cleaning and disinfecting all community residence hall spaces and performing deep disinfectant cleaning in the four halls closed during the break. All residence halls will continue to be disinfected and cleaned regularly per normal protocol. This practice will continue for the remainder of the semester. Students are strongly encouraged to use disinfectant wipes on personal belongings and surfaces within their bedrooms and suites.

In an abundance of caution, students returning from a level 2 or 3 country are required to self-quarantine even if no symptoms of illness are present.

Self-quarantine means you should stay in your place of residence, take your temperature twice a day and not go out until the quarantine period of 14 days is over. Should your temperature rise during your quarantine, please consult your doctor. Do not show up at an urgent care facility, hospital emergency room or doctor’s office unannounced – be sure to call first to let them know you have been in quarantine.

If you’re a student living off campus: You should quarantine at home with your family. After the 14 days, you must be cleared by your personal doctor. Please be sure to call ahead and let the physician's office know you have been in quarantine.

If you’re a student living on campus: You should quarantine at your off-campus home with your family. After the 14 days, you must be cleared by your personal doctor. You should not return to your residence hall or go to your room until you receive direction from University of Memphis Housing and Residential Life staff. 

If you are a student living on campus who can’t quarantine off campus: You must contact the Residence Life Office before arriving to campus so staff can assist you in setting up a place to quarantine on campus. Contact this department at housing@memphis.edu or 901.678.2295.

At the end of the quarantine, if you are free of symptoms and have followed quarantine procedures, you must make an appointment with your doctor to be cleared. Please be sure to call ahead and let the office know you have been in quarantine. 

Students must make an appointment with a medical professional and obtain clearance to return to campus. The Student Medical Clearance Form must be filled out by your medical provider and submitted electronically to the Student Health Center at studenthealth@memphis.edu no more than three days prior to returning to campus. Review the “students” section below for more information. For guidance, the UofM Student Health Center can be reached at studenthealth@memphis.edu or 901.678.2287.

Insecurities

Efforts to address student food insecurity will also continue via the Tiger Pantry:

  • Students can visit memphis.edu/tigerpantry to sign up for a bag pickup time. This replaces the former choice pantry model to reduce the health risk.
  • **Please inform us of any specific dietary needs/restrictions..
  • Tiger Meal Swipes program is also available. This program provides five free swipes to the Tiger Den facility to get a meal. Learn more about Tiger Meal Swipes >

The Office of the Dean of Students has compiled a comprehensive list of resources to assist with Emergency Fund Relief related to COVID-19. Review the list of resources >

The Office of the Dean of Students is available to provide you with guidance and resources to support your continued academic pursuits. To efficiently address your needs, we will provide service and support through our Dean of Students Student Support Assistance Request form.After receiving your form submission, we will connect you with a staff member who will identify resources for your specific needs.

Questions Related to Fall 2020 Semester

Yes, in accordance with the best available health guidance and in an effort to protect the safety of our students, faculty and staff, the University of Memphis will begin classes one week earlier than previously planned so that all classes and final exams can be completed prior to the Thanksgiving holidays. All classes will begin on Monday, August 17, and end on Tuesday, November 24. The last day of regular classes will be Tuesday, November 17, with five days for final exams. We will not be taking a fall break this semester, but will observe the Labor Day holiday. Announcements about additional measures will be forthcoming as the University’s preparedness work groups finalize and present their recommendations to the administration for approval and implementation this fall.

Yes, on-campus housing is being provided. Our day-to-day operations will follow CDC guidelines, local health authority recommendations, all other appropriate safety measures and the TN Pledge for Higher Education. Additionally, we will have testing, symptom monitoring, contact tracing and quarantine protocols in place for our residents. Additional details are available on the ResLife website, memphis.edu/reslife.

Our housing portal is open to apply for on-campus housing.

To review/update your application or apply for housing:

  • Log in to the MyMemphis dashboard and then click the ‘Student’ tab.
  • Go to the Housing and Residence Life section and click on the ‘Housing Application Portal’ link, then select “Housing Application.”
  • Select the appropriate term “Fall 2020 - Spring 2021" and "Regular Student Housing" then follow the steps through the portal.

To stay informed and be a part of the Tigers Live Here experience, please follow @UofMResLife on Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, Snapchat and Pinterest. Our department is available to answer any questions via email at housing@memphis.edu or phone at 901.678.2295.

Dining options on campus are also available. Chartwells has adopted safety guidelines related to our associates and guests. Please review the new safety measures, such as wearing a face covering when not actively eating and social distance requirements, included in our Path to Open guide before visiting a dining location. View current dining location hours >


Faculty & Staff

Guidelines for Being on Campus

If you are on campus, you are required to wear masks, gloves (if appropriate) and wash your hands with soap and water or use hand sanitizer frequently. Whenever you are on campus , a mask must be worn any time you are in public areas or near others, even if you are maintaining appropriate distancing. You are also asked to practice social distancing which includes staying at least 6 feet (about 2 arms’ length) from others, avoid gathering in groups, and staying out of crowded places. Maintaining space between you and others has proven to be one of the best tools to avoid being exposed to the virus. These precautions are for your own safety and the safety of others around you. A comprehensive list of guidelines is available in the Workforce & Facilities Committees Report.

To appropriately respond to the impacts of COVID-19, the University has taken several steps following CDC guidelines and directives from local authorities to include:

  • moving all academic offerings to remote instruction;
  • having all non-essential personnel work from home;
  • limiting access to campus facilities; and
  • practicing appropriate social distancing and density of essential personnel on campus.

Health

If you are displaying symptoms or believe you have been exposed to someone with the coronavirus, you must contact your healthcare provider immediately and discontinue working. After consulting your healthcare provider contact your HR Business Partner and Supervisor. Your HR Business Partner will advise you of your next steps as it relates to your work, health, leave and FMLA benefits including the Emergency Paid Sick Leave.

The University has opened a COVID-19 Testing Center for only UofM students, faculty and staff who are exhibiting symptoms. Located at the Central to the Arts Hub, formerly the Visitors Information Center at the corner of Central and Patterson, the Center will be open Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 9 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. Testing Center access details are very specific and are provided at memphis.edu/coronavirusupdates/sick/testing.php.

Leave of Absence

In an effort to ease employees’ choices between protecting their jobs and their families, the US Department of Labor (DOL) has implemented various changes enacted by Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) effective April 1, 2020, through December 31, 2020. Complete details about the Families First Coronavirus Response Act can be found at https://www.memphis.edu/hr/ffcra.php.

To assist employees that may not have enough leave to cover any necessary absences due to illness associated with the COVID-19, and to allow the donation of leave from one employee to another, we are temporarily adjusting the Sick Leave Bank (SLB) Policy and the Sick Leave Transfer Between Employees Policy as follows:

  • Employees do not need to have a minimum of 45 hours to be able to join the SLB provided that they have 22.5 hours of accumulated sick leave to donate to the pool upon joining.
  • The 90-day waiting period for new members of the SLB to apply for SLB hours is being reduced to a 30-day waiting period.
  • The 12-month waiting period for new members of the SLB to apply for hours due to a pre-existing condition is being waived provided the illness is related to COVID-19.
  • Employees will not have to exhaust their accumulated sick and annual leave to petition hours from the SLB. As long as all accumulated sick leave is exhausted, a SLB member may request hours from the SLB without having used their accumulated annual leave.
  • The stipulation that primary consideration for hours requested from the SLB would be given to SLB members on 100% medical leave is being waived. Equal consideration will be given to all that apply for hours from the SLB.
  • Employees may transfer some of their own sick leave hours to a Sick Leave Bank member who has exhausted their accumulated sick leave hours as well as any SLB hours and continues to experience a disability due to illness associated with COVID-19. Employees do not have to exhaust their annual leave to receive hours from the SLB or donated hours from another employee.

Any requests and allocations of leave from the SLB and any leave transferred from one employee to another due to illness associated with COVID-19 requires a physician statement indicating the prognosis and diagnosis be provided to Human Resources. All medical documentation will be kept confidential in accordance with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA).

As a regular faculty or staff of the University, you accrue sick leave hours as well as annual leave hours, where applicable. While you are quarantined, you may continue getting paid by using first your accumulated sick leave and then your accumulated annual leave, if applicable.

  • CDC Quarantine - Employees who are quarantined by the CDC, may use their accumulated sick and annual leave to remain on pay status. If the employee does not have sick or annual leave accumulated, they will be eligible to apply for hours from the Sick Leave Bank (SLB) provided they are members of the Bank and have been diagnosed by a physician as being infected with the coronavirus. For information on how to request hours from the SLB, refer to policy HR5026. Employees who have exhausted all available leave must contact their supervisor and Human Resources to initiate a request for leave of absence without pay.
  • University Quarantine - Employees who are quarantined by the University may use their accumulated sick and annual leave to remain on pay status. Employees who are members of the Sick Leave Bank (SLB) will not be eligible to apply and receive hours from the Bank, unless the employee has been diagnosed by a physician as being infected with the coronavirus. If the employee has no accumulated leave to cover their absence, they must contact their supervisor and Human Resources to initiate a request for leave of absence without pay.
  • Self-Quarantine - Employees who self-quarantine, may use their accumulated sick and annual leave to remain on pay status. Employees who are members of the SLB will not be eligible to apply and receive hours from the Bank, unless the employee has been diagnosed by a physician as being infected with the coronavirus. If the employee has no accumulated leave to cover their absence, they must contact their supervisor and Human Resources to initiate a request for leave of absence without pay. 

Visit the Human Resources informational page related to COVID-19 that addresses leave, benefits, etc.

For any questions or additional information regarding your leave and/or benefits, you may contact your assigned Sr. HR Business Partner or Human Resources at 901.678.3573 or hr@memphis.edu. For a list of Sr. HR Business Partners, please visit:  https://www.memphis.edu/hr/staff.php.

View additional HR information related to COVID-19 >

Working from Home

As of March 24, the City of Memphis is operating under a “Safer at Home” Executive Order. Please note, the University of Memphis is not closing as a result of this order; however, on campus personnel is limited to only those employees considered to be on-site essential. On-site essential employees are those that perform functions that keep the campus running and whose functions cannot be performed remotely. All other employees should be working from home at this time and practicing social distancing. Employees working remotely are considered to be on an Alternate Work Arrangement/Schedule as specified in University Policy HR5061-Alternative Work Arrangements. If it is determined that the functions of a position can be performed remotely, the employee should complete the Alternative Work Arrangement Request Form and submit to Human Resources. Also, employees seeking accommodations related to the Americans with Disabilities Act may start that process online.

Yes, any employee wishing to work on an alternative work arrangement during Fall 2020 should complete a request form. Each request must be approved to be considered valid.

Faculty and staff may email parking@memphis.edu to make any changes to current parking status.

Yes, per the CDC, your risk of getting severely ill from COVID-19 increases as you get older. In fact, 8 out of 10 COVID-19 related deaths reported in the United States have been among adults aged 65 years and older. See this link for more information: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/need-extra-precautions/older-adults.html.

View additional HR information related to COVID-19 >

Technical & Teaching Assistance

The University was transitioning to Zoom as our video conferencing software. Additional information (including documentation, training videos, etc.) is located on the Center for Teaching and Learning website.

If you need assistance with remote teaching technologies, please contact the ITS Service Desk at 901.678.8888, email umtech@memphis.edu or visit umhelpdesk.memphis.edu.

Business Services

  • Any unavoidable costs due to COVID-19 are allowable as University expenses on all appropriate general, auxiliary and restricted funds. These include costs such as travel and lodging cancellation fees.
  • Even if an expense is unavoidable, it may not be allowable on a sponsored project if the project doesn’t benefit from the expense. An example would be if a conference paid for on a project is cancelled. If the cost isn’t refunded or only partially refunded, then that expense will need to be moved onto a non-sponsored research fund.
  • Any avoidable costs incurred out of caution to avoid activities that might expose personnel to COVID-19 are allowable on appropriate general, auxiliary and restricted funds; however, these costs aren’t allowable on sponsored research projects without approval from the sponsor. Examples include additional travel expenses incurred to avoid layovers in countries with a higher risk of COVID-19 per the CDC or choosing to avoid conferences that haven’t been cancelled.
  • The Controller’s office is following this guidance for sponsored projects in the absence of any specific guidance from sponsors. Departments will want to check if specific sponsor guidance is available or reach out to the manager, Grants and Contracts Accounting, in order to determine what COVID-19 related expenses are allowable on their sponsored projects.
  • The Controller’s office is working on a mechanism to track expenses related to COVID-19.

The University is implementing a moratorium on all employment actions, effective April 1, 2020, until further notice. This action includes all requests to hire, reclassify or otherwise adjust staff and faculty positions. This action will allow the University to continue to monitor and assess this fluid situation and responsibly position itself to minimize the anticipated financial impact.

Recognizing there will be a need for essential or strategic hiring, an exception process has been developed to evaluate proposals. Any request for exceptions will be presented to the President through the Provost (faculty positions) and the CFO (staff positions) for consideration.

Research

The Division of Research & Innovation has developed a series of guidelines for research labs to reopen and restart their on-going research. View additional information related to research on the Division of Research & Innovation website >

Questions Related to Fall 2020 Semester

Yes, in accordance with the best available health guidance and in an effort to protect the safety of our students, faculty and staff, the University of Memphis will begin classes one week earlier than previously planned so that all classes and final exams can be completed prior to the Thanksgiving holidays. All classes will begin on Monday, August 17, and end on Tuesday, November 24. The last day of regular classes will be Tuesday, November 17, with five days for final exams. We will not be taking a fall break this semester, but will observe the Labor Day holiday. Announcements about additional measures will be forthcoming as the University’s preparedness work groups finalize and present their recommendations to the administration for approval and implementation this fall.


Campus Safety & Operations

In an effort to better secure our campus, the majority of buildings on all campuses will be locked and accessible via faculty, staff or student ID only.

Computer labs, dining areas and the first floor of the library are still open and accessible. Available hours can be found on the Technology Resource Locator website.

Access for contractors and outside vendors will be handled through Physical Plant, Campus Planning and Police Services. When necessary, faculty and staff will be notified of work being performed in their respective areas.

Anyone having immediate difficulty accessing a facility can call Police Services at 901.678.4357. Requestors should have a valid University ID to show the responding police officer or security personnel. Verbal confirmation from a dean/director/chairperson may be required prior to Police Services granting access to an area.

If you do not have a University ID card, email campuscard@memphis.edu to have a card created.

The HVAC systems in each building will remain active, and Physical Plant and Police Services will continue to inspect buildings regularly. Specific Physical Plant concerns should be directed to Work Control at 901.678.2699 or pp@memphis.edu. Specific security concerns should be sent to police@memphis.edu.

Any questions regarding access, use of card access, or location of access points should be sent to buildingaccess@memphis.edu.

We will have computer labs on campus available for students who do not have adequate computers or bandwidth at home. Access and usage will follow CDC guidelines. Information regarding computing lab locations and hours of availability can be found on the Technology Resource Locator website. *NOTE: University ID will be required to access the buildings.* Please check the website for the most current information.

For current dining hours, visit https://dineoncampus.com/UofM/uofm-dining-hours-of-operations. For Starbucks hours, visit: https://www.bkstr.com/memphisstore/store-hours

We encourage our campus community to dine in the campus dining locations to provide safe and convenient meal options during this time.  If you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to reach out to rstwart7@memphis.edu

For current UofM Bookstore hours, visit: https://www.bkstr.com/memphisstore/store-hours

Please keep in mind the bookstore is always open online for your educational or personal needs with the following options to offer support:

  • FREE Online Shipping Offer: Visit the campus store website for Free Shipping on all items with no minimum purchase. This includes various formats of course materials, supplies, apparel, technology and more.
  • FREE Shipping on Rental Returns & Deadline Extensions: When it’s time to return your books, the campus store is offering free shipping return labels and is also extending the non-return period without penalty to assist with increased returns by mail. Click the COVID-19 message on the home page of the campus store website.

Coronavirus

Source and additional FAQs related to coronavirus: World Health Organization

Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses which may cause illness in animals or humans. In humans, several coronaviruses are known to cause respiratory infections ranging from the common cold to more severe diseases such as Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) and Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS). The most recently discovered coronavirus causes coronavirus disease COVID-19.

COVID-19 is the infectious disease caused by the most recently discovered coronavirus. This new virus and disease were unknown before the outbreak began in Wuhan, China, in December 2019. COVID-19 is now a pandemic affecting many countries globally.

The most common symptoms of COVID-19 are fever, dry cough, and tiredness. Other symptoms that are less common and may affect some patients include aches and pains, nasal congestion, headache, conjunctivitis, sore throat, diarrhea, loss of taste or smell or a rash on skin or discoloration of fingers or toes. These symptoms are usually mild and begin gradually. Some people become infected but only have very mild symptoms.

Most people (about 80%) recover from the disease without needing hospital treatment. Around 1 out of every 5 people who gets COVID-19 becomes seriously ill and develops difficulty breathing. Older people, and those with underlying medical problems like high blood pressure, heart and lung problems, diabetes, or cancer, are at higher risk of developing serious illness. However, anyone can catch COVID-19 and become seriously ill. People of all ages who experience fever and/or cough associated with difficulty breathing/shortness of breath, chest pain/pressure, or loss of speech or movement should seek medical attention immediately. If possible, it is recommended to call the health care provider or facility first, so the patient can be directed to the right clinic.

If you have minor symptoms, such as a slight cough or a mild fever, there is generally no need to seek medical care. Stay at home, self-isolate and monitor your symptoms. Follow national guidance on self-isolation.

However, if you live in an area with malaria or dengue fever it is important that you do not ignore symptoms of fever. Seek medical help. When you attend the health facility wear a mask if possible, keep at least 1 metre distance from other people and do not touch surfaces with your hands. If it is a child who is sick help the child stick to this advice.

Seek immediate medical care if you have difficulty breathing or pain/pressure in the chest. If possible, call your health care provider in advance, so he/she can direct you to the right health facility.

People can catch COVID-19 from others who have the virus. The disease spreads primarily from person to person through small droplets from the nose or mouth, which are expelled when a person with COVID-19 coughs, sneezes, or speaks. These droplets are relatively heavy, do not travel far and quickly sink to the ground. People can catch COVID-19 if they breathe in these droplets from a person infected with the virus. This is why it is important to stay at least 1 meter) away from others. These droplets can land on objects and surfaces around the person such as tables, doorknobs and handrails. People can become infected by touching these objects or surfaces, then touching their eyes, nose or mouth. This is why it is important to wash your hands regularly with soap and water or clean with alcohol-based hand rub.

WHO is assessing ongoing research on the ways that COVID-19 is spread and will continue to share updated findings.

COVID-19 is mainly spread through respiratory droplets expelled by someone who is coughing or has other symptoms such as fever or tiredness. Many people with COVID-19 experience only mild symptoms. This is particularly true in the early stages of the disease. It is possible to catch COVID-19 from someone who has just a mild cough and does not feel ill.

Some reports have indicated that people with no symptoms can transmit the virus. It is not yet known how often it happens. WHO is assessing ongoing research on the topic and will continue to share updated findings.

Practicing hand and respiratory hygiene is important at ALL times and is the best way to protect others and yourself.

When possible maintain at least a 1 meter distance between yourself and others. This is especially important if you are standing by someone who is coughing or sneezing. Since some infected persons may not yet be exhibiting symptoms or their symptoms may be mild, maintaining a physical distance with everyone is a good idea if you are in an area where COVID-19 is circulating.

Stay aware of the latest information on the COVID-19 outbreak, available on the WHO website and through your national and local public health authority. Most countries around the world have seen cases of COVID-19 and many are experiencing outbreaks. Authorities in China and some other countries have succeeded in slowing their outbreaks. However, the situation is unpredictable so check regularly for the latest news.

You can reduce your chances of being infected or spreading COVID-19 by taking some simple precautions:

  • Regularly and thoroughly clean your hands with an alcohol-based hand rub or wash them with soap and water. Why? Washing your hands with soap and water or using alcohol-based hand rub kills viruses that may be on your hands.
  • Maintain at least 1 metre distance between yourself and others. Why? When someone coughs, sneezes, or speaks they spray small liquid droplets from their nose or mouth which may contain virus. If you are too close, you can breathe in the droplets, including the COVID-19 virus if the person has the disease.
  • Avoid going to crowded places. Why? Where people come together in crowds, you are more likely to come into close contact with someone that has COVID-19 and it is more difficult to maintain physical distance of 1 metre.
  • Avoid touching eyes, nose and mouth. Why? Hands touch many surfaces and can pick up viruses. Once contaminated, hands can transfer the virus to your eyes, nose or mouth. From there, the virus can enter your body and infect you.
  • Make sure you, and the people around you, follow good respiratory hygiene. This means covering your mouth and nose with your bent elbow or tissue when you cough or sneeze. Then dispose of the used tissue immediately and wash your hands. Why? Droplets spread virus. By following good respiratory hygiene, you protect the people around you from viruses such as cold, flu and COVID-19.
  • Stay home and self-isolate even with minor symptoms such as cough, headache, mild fever, until you recover. Have someone bring you supplies. If you need to leave your house, wear a mask to avoid infecting others. Why? Avoiding contact with others will protect them from possible COVID-19 and other viruses.
  • If you have a fever, cough and difficulty breathing, seek medical attention, but call by telephone in advance if possible and follow the directions of your local health authority. Why? National and local authorities will have the most up to date information on the situation in your area. Calling in advance will allow your health care provider to quickly direct you to the right health facility. This will also protect you and help prevent spread of viruses and other infections.
  • Keep up to date on the latest information from trusted sources, such as WHO or your local and national health authorities. Why? Local and national authorities are best placed to advise on what people in your area should be doing to protect themselves.

Practicing hand and respiratory hygiene is important at ALL times and is the best way to protect others and yourself.

When possible maintain at least a 1 meter distance between yourself and others. This is especially important if you are standing by someone who is coughing or sneezing. Since some infected persons may not yet be exhibiting symptoms or their symptoms may be mild, maintaining a physical distance with everyone is a good idea if you are in an area where COVID-19 is circulating.

The most important thing to know about coronavirus on surfaces is that they can easily be cleaned with common household disinfectants that will kill the virus. Studies have shown that the COVID-19 virus can survive for up to 72 hours on plastic and stainless steel, less than 4 hours on copper and less than 24 hours on cardboard.

As, always clean your hands with an alcohol-based hand rub or wash them with soap and water. Avoid touching your eyes, mouth, or nose.


Prevention & Containment

Yes. This is the time to increase your hand hygiene efforts, observe good coughing/sneezing etiquette, keep your distance from anyone who is ill (at least six feet) and clean your workclass="btn btn-link text-white collapsed text-left" area often.

For more details on how you can help prevent the spread of disease, please review the Coronavirus Updates.

If you are sick, please stay home and consult a medical professional. DO NOT show up at a medical facility for treatment without calling ahead first and advising the office of your symptoms, if you have fever, coughing and shortness of breath.

Learn more about the coronavirus from the World Health Organization >

As a reminder, members of the University community, including visitors to the UofM, coming from countries with CDC Level 2 and 3 rating at the time of arrival in the U.S., regardless if the trip was related to University business or personal, are required to observe a 14-day self-quarantine period and must produce a medical clearance prior to returning to campus.

Self-quarantine means you should stay in your place of residence, take and log your temperature twice a day and not leave your residence until the quarantine period of 14 days is over. Should your temperature rise during your quarantine, please consult a medical professional. Do not show up at an urgent care facility, hospital emergency room or a medical professional’s office unannounced – be sure to call first to let them know your symptoms and that you have been in quarantine.

Any home being considered for self-quarantine should follow these minimum standards: 

Accommodations:

  • Ability to provide a separate bedroom for the person in self-quarantine
  • One bathroom designated for use by the person in self-quarantine

Actions and resources for the self-quarantined person:

  • Do not go to work, school or public areas, and do not use public transportation, ride-apps (e.g. Uber) or taxis. Separate yourself from other people in your home. Take and document your temperature twice a day (A.M. and P.M.)
  • If you develop a fever and/or flu-like symptoms, call a medical professional and explain your contact history and your signs and symptoms (include temperature readings). Other symptoms and signs to look for include: coughing, shortness of breath, chills, body aches, sore throat, headache, diarrhea, nausea/ vomiting and runny nose.
  • Obtain food and necessary items using an internet provider/delivery service or from others in the household – do not go out into society. Stay six feet away from other family members and others inside the home.
  • Avoid sharing household items. You should not share dishes, drinking glasses, cups, eating utensils, towels, bedding or other items with other people in your home. After using these items, you should wash them thoroughly with soap and water.
  • Wash laundry thoroughly. In general, wash and dry with the warmest temperatures recommended on the clothing label.
  • Practice proper hand and respiratory hygiene.
  • Work/study from home using modern technology.

At the end of the quarantine:

Faculty and staff must make an appointment with a medical professional and obtain clearance to return to work. The Faculty/Staff Medical Clearance Form must be filled out by your medical provider and submitted to hr@memphis.edu no more than three days prior to returning to campus. Faculty and staff who have questions about returning to campus can contact Human Resources at hr@memphis.edu or 901.678.3573.

Students must make an appointment with a medical professional and obtain clearance to return to campus. The Student Medical Clearance Form must be filled out by your medical provider and submitted electronically to the Student Health Center at studenthealth@memphis.edu no more than three days prior to returning to campus. Review the “students” section below for more information. For guidance, the UofM Student Health Center can be reached at studenthealth@memphis.edu or 901.678.2287.

If you are feeling ill, it is important that you see a medical professional right away. Please call ahead and let the medical professional’s office know the symptoms you are having. Be sure to stay away from others, cover your cough and wash your hands frequently.

If you become symptomatic, you may call the UofM Health Center at 901.678.2287 to speak to someone who will give you further instructions. If you have symptoms, DO NOT go to the UofM Health Center as it is not a testing site for coronavirus.

As soon as possible, make notes about where you have been in the past two weeks and the people you have been in contact with. Should you be diagnosed with coronavirus, a medical professional will need these notes to trace the virus and help keep others healthy.

At the medical professional’s office, urgent care facility, or emergency room, you will be asked for your travel history, will be evaluated again and likely get an x-ray of the lungs, which is a critical step in diagnosing coronavirus. Depending on the results of the x-ray, you may or may not be tested for coronavirus. If you are tested for coronavirus, you can expect to get results back in 24 to 48 hours.

If you have been tested, you will be quarantined at home. If you test positive for coronavirus, you will need to self-isolate for 14 days. If you don’t test positive, you still would want to stay away from others until you feel better.

The University has opened a COVID-19 Testing Center for only UofM students, faculty and staff who are exhibiting symptoms. Located at the Central to the Arts Hub, formerly the Visitors Information Center at the corner of Central and Patterson, the Center will be open Monday, Wednesday and Friday from 9 a.m. - 2:30 p.m. Testing Center access details are very specific and are provided at memphis.edu/coronavirusupdates/sick/testing.php.

Physical Plant is actively monitoring campus cleanliness, and we are increasing servicing of heavily used facilities around campus ensuring that supplies such as soap, hand sanitizers, etc. are properly stocked.

We are also implementing an enhanced cleaning cycle for major facilities. We will continue to expand and recycle these efforts.


Travel

In our efforts to continue to take all reasonable precautions to reduce the impacts of COVID-19, the University is suspending all travel, domestic and international, for as long as local, state and federal social distancing guidelines are in place. University personnel who had previously approved travel planned should work with their supervisors and the Controller’s office regarding the details of cancellation and related financial questions. Any request for an exception will need to be reviewed and approved at the senior leadership level.

As a reminder, members of the University community, including visitors to the UofM coming from countries with CDC Level 2 and 3 rating at the time of arrival in the U.S., regardless if the trip was related to University business or personal, are required to observe a 14-day self-quarantine period and must produce a medical clearance prior to returning to campus.

Personal Travel:
We encourage all employees to exercise sound judgment when deciding to travel domestically and internationally even for personal reasons. Should you elect to travel internationally, especially to places rated level 2 or level 3, you will need to comply with applicable quarantine requirements.

Please note that members of the University community may face unpredictable circumstances while abroad, including insufficient health care provisions, disruption to local services and the potential for mobility restrictions.

On travel related matters not addressed in the FAQ’s, please e-mail the Controller’s office at gninan@memphis.edu and Shared Services at kyates1@memphis.edu.

Staff and Faculty are required to follow University of Memphis policy, BF 4001- University Travel and related procedures when submitting their travel claims. In addition, the general guidelines on how to handle general university expenses and sponsored project expenditures will apply when impacted by the COVID 19. In keeping with these guidelines, please adhere to these additional steps when submitting your travel claim:

  • Make a reasonable effort to recover prepayments related to cancelled travel plans, such as airline tickets, hotel bookings, registration fees etc.
  • Attach documentation to substantiate the unavoidable nature of expenses such as cancelation charges and non-refunded expenses with receipts, vendor policy communication etc.
  • Financial Manager/Supervisor may approve credits for future use instead of refunds where there is a reasonable expectation that such credit will benefit the University in the conduct of its business or furthering its mission.

For any other questions please email the Controller’s office at gninan@memphis.edu and Shared services at kyates1@memphis.edu.


CARES Act

The recently enacted federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act provided money to colleges and universities for emergency student grants. The purpose of the money is to award emergency financial aid grants to students for specific expenses that are a direct result of the disruption of campus operations due to the coronavirus.

The University of Memphis is in the process of determining and will begin to distribute CARES Act Emergency funding in a way that prioritizes students with the greatest demonstrated need as evidenced by their completed FAFSA on file and ensures that funds are distributed as widely as possible.

The following is a list of expenses that can be considered for CARES Act Emergency grant assistance if they were incurred in "direct relation to the disruption of campus operations due to the coronavirus."

    • Food
    • Housing
    • Course materials
    • Health care
    • Childcare
    • Technology-related expenses (such as having to buy a computer when courses were moved online)
    • Transportation (such as having to fly home because classes were canceled or having to return from study abroad when the program was canceled)

The CARES Act stipulates that the emergency funds cannot be used to replace a loss of income or to pay for student expenses that are not directly related to the disruption of campus operations due to the coronavirus pandemic.

The US Department of Education states only undergraduate and graduate students who are Title IV eligible can be awarded CARES Act Emergency funds. This means students must have a FAFSA on file with the University of Memphis or be eligible to file one. Additional recent federal guidance further clarified who may receive CARES Act Emergency funds.

Unfortunately, the US Department of Education does not allow CARES Act Emergency funds to be used for international, DACA or undocumented students or for any student who was exclusively taking online courses prior to March 13, 2020.

No. An undergraduate student or graduate student only needs to be eligible to file a FAFSA or already have a FAFSA on file with the University of Memphis.

The University of Memphis has created separate funding pools for graduate students and undergraduate students to ensure we prioritize students with greatest need from both categories, which is in keeping with US Department of Education requirements. Funds have been allocated to each pool proportionately based on the eligible headcount for undergraduates and for graduates.

CARES Act Emergency funding for eligible undergraduate students will be distributed in two ways:

  • Direct awards will be given to students receiving Pell Grants who the federal government defines as having exceptional need. The University will communicate directly to Pell recipients about their award through their UofM email account. Pell Grant recipients do not need to submit an application to receive their CARES Act Emergency funds.
  • Remaining CARES Act Emergency funds will be set aside for eligible undergraduate students to access through the University’s existing emergency funding program. Students in this group should have filed a FAFSA or be eligible to file a FAFSA.

Our goal is to award the CARES Act Emergency funds in the very near future.

All emergency grants will be processed through University and Student Business Services (USBS) via your Tiger Express student account. Emergency grants will be directly deposited into bank accounts for students who are enrolled in direct deposit. Students without direct deposit will receive a paper refund check in the mail.

The full amount of the emergency grants will be given directly to the student, and the University of Memphis will not hold the funds to pay any outstanding balance owed.

No. This funding is not financial aid, it is emergency relief funding from Congress.


For any additional questions on the processing of your eligible CARES ACT Emergency funds, please contact the University and Student Business Services at usbs@memphis.edu with any questions.