NOTE: The plan outlined below contains essential, detailed information that all faculty, staff and students must know before returning to WIU, and upon their return to WIU’s Macomb and Quad Cities campuses. Please take time to read through this document carefully to become familiar with all requirements and protocols in order to comply. Visit wiu.edu/coronavirus for more information, including FAQs.

MACOMB/MOLINE, IL — As Western Illinois University plans to resume the traditional in-person experience beginning Jan. 18, 2022, to help ensure the health and safety of the members of University community and beyond, updated COVID-19 policies and procedures have been set for the Spring 2022 semester, including mandatory gateway testing for all faculty, staff and students, regardless of vaccination status. Individuals are highly encouraged to test at a location near their home, if possible, at least 72 hours prior to returning to campus.

As procedures and guidelines continue to be updated, the information will be shared with the University community and available at wiu.edu/coronavirus and wiu.edu/returntocampus. FAQs are also available under each section on the Coronavirus website. Members of the WIU community who have questions or concerns are asked, before emailing a member of the University staff, to first visit wiu.edu/coronavirus.

“While we certainly hoped to have a different start to the spring semester, we must keep the health and safety of our University community at the forefront of our decisions. We will continue to follow science and recommendations from local, state and federal health professionals,” said WIU President Guiyou Huang. “Thank you for your cooperation, patience and flexibility as we continue to navigate through this public health crisis. Please take care of yourselves and each other.”

Western Illinois University Releases Spring 2022 Updated COVID-19 Policies, Procedures

Gateway Testing

Prior to Returning to WIU:

All individuals returning to campus (regardless of vaccination status) are highly encouraged to obtain a COVID-19 test three to five days prior to arriving on either the Macomb or Moline campuses. The State of Illinois has several community-based testing locations throughout the state (https://dph.illinois.gov/covid19/testing.html).

Please see “Weekly Testing” section for instructions on how to submit the results of this test at the Off-Campus COVID-19 Test Results Portal at http://www.wiu.edu/offcampustest/.

By testing before returning to WIU, individuals are ensuring they’re free of the COVID-19 virus, and if positive, can remain home for the duration of the required isolation period. All students (including WIU-Quad Cities-based students) who receive a positive diagnosis should contact the Student Development and Success Center (SDSC) at sdsc@wiu.edu so that proper assistance from the University can be obtained, including instructor notifications and documentation for further notifications. Employees who test positive should first contact their supervisor and, if necessary, Human Resources for additional guidance. Please see below for instructions on how to submit an off-campus PCR-based (saliva) test to comply with the gateway testing.

Upon Return to WIU Macomb & Quad Cities Campuses

All faculty, staff and students, regardless of vaccination status, must complete a COVID-19 test each week of the gateway testing period, regardless of vaccination status, through January 27.*

Gateway testing period:
January 10 – 16
January 17 – 23
January 24 – 31

Test locations include the Student Recreation Center MAC Gym on the Macomb campus and the Riverfront Hall reception desk on the Quad Cities campus. Members of the campus community who are currently on the Macomb campus are being requested to schedule their test early in the week to assist with scheduling.

Western Illinois University Releases Spring 2022 Updated COVID-19 Policies, Procedures

Test clinic times are as follows:

WIU-Macomb (register in advance at bit.ly/WIUCOVID19Testing).

Monday-Thursday, Jan. 10-13: 7 a.m.-6 p.m.
Tuesday-Thursday, Jan. 18-20: 7 a.m.-6 p.m.
Monday-Thursday, Jan. 24-27: 7 a.m.-6 p.m.

Beginning, Monday, Jan. 31, the Macomb test clinic will be open:
Mondays & Tuesdays, 9 a.m.-6 p.m.
Wednesdays & Thursdays, 7 a.m.-4 p.m.

WIU-Quad Cities

Beginning Monday, Jan. 10: 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. Mondays, Wednesdays & Thursdays; 8 a.m.-6 p.m. Tuesdays; and 8 a.m.-3 p.m. Fridays

If individuals are unable to make it to the campus testing site during times of operation, they are encouraged to use other local resources in order to meet compliance.

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Weekly Testing

Following the completion of mandated gateway testing** for all faculty, staff and students, testing will continue to be required each week for those individuals who do not want to, or cannot, receive the vaccination. Individuals may opt out of testing if proof of vaccination is provided. Regardless of reason, if an individual is physically present on either WIU campus, they are responsible for testing for that respective week (unless fully vaccinated). Additionally, any vaccinated employee who wants to test voluntarily may continue to do so.

Those who do not follow the testing protocols will be subject to disciplinary action and could result in the following loss of privileges including, but not limited to class registration, time off without pay, suspension of student employment, recreation center access, assistantship employment, event/gathering access and commencement participation.

* Individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19 in the last 90 days do not need to participate in gateway or weekly testing and should submit their documentation to studentcovidhelp@wiu.edu.

** Individuals can elect to conduct their gateway or weekly test off campus; however, the test must be a PCR-based (saliva) test to be equivalent to the test modality provided at the on-campus testing clinics. Once results are received, they can be sent to the Off-Campus COVID-19 Test Results Portal. To be compliant for the previous week, test results must be received by 11:59 p.m. Sunday evenings.

Western Illinois University Releases Spring 2022 Updated COVID-19 Policies, Procedures

Remote/Online Students/Employees

Students who are taking 100 percent of their coursework online and who are not physically present on WIU’s campuses at any time, and employees who are not working in person on WIU’s campuses, do not need to follow campus testing protocols.

Any student and employee who comes to either WIU campus for any reason (extracurricular activity, sporting event, office work, etc.) are required to be compliant with the procedures outlined in this document, regardless of time spent on campus.

Students and employees who are 100 percent remote are encouraged to upload vaccination information.

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SHIELD IL Account Registration

To expedite the testing process, all members of the University community who do not currently have a SHIELD IL account are requested to register prior to their arrival at the WIU-Macomb test site. To set up a SHIELD IL account, visit https://www.wiu.edu/users/cms300/covidtest/index.php.

Vaccination and Boosters

Receiving a COVID-19 vaccination is the best protection from COVID-19 and reduces the impact of COVID-19 on the University and surrounding communities. All members of the WIU community are expected to get their COVID-19 vaccination or respective eligible booster before returning to campus. Throughout the spring semester, the University, in conjunction with the McDonough County Health Department (MCHD), will host vaccination clinics in the University Union Sandburg Lounge. Dates and times of clinics will be communicated. The Rock Island Health Department hosts walk-in vaccine clinics twice a week at its offices located at 2112 25th Ave, Rock Island. For more information, visit https://richd.org/ . Individuals can also visit https://www.vaccines.gov/ to find a vaccination clinic near them.

To submit COVID-19 vaccination information, click the following link:
wiu.edu/vaccinationportal/ (select “student” or “employee” category).

Following a booster shot, individuals should submit updated information to the University. Members of the University community can send an updated picture of their COVID-19 vaccination card to:

Students: beuhealthcenter@wiu.edu
Employees: rmep@wiu.edu

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Individuals who do not wish to upload or email the information, can show the card in person to University staff at the following locations: WIU-Macomb students: Beu Health Center; WIU-Macomb employees: Sherman Hall 321 (Vice President for Student Success Office); WIU-Quad Cities students & employees: Riverfront Hall reception desk.

The following COVID-19 policies (http://www.wiu.edu/policies/) and protocols are in place until further notice:

COVID-19 Health & Safety Policy (http://www.wiu.edu/policies/covid_safety.php)

A key requirement for reducing the likelihood of COVID-19 transmission involves significantly reducing the number of close ‘people-to-people’ and ‘people-to-infected-surface’ encounters. These reductions are achieved through measures described in this policy including: social distancing and campus density reductions; the use of appropriate personal protective equipment and aggressive cleaning protocols; and personal hygiene discipline (click on the link above for all COVID-19 campus policies).

Face Coverings (http://www.wiu.edu/policies/covid_facecovering.php)

To help ensure the health and safety of the WIU campus communities and the public, face coverings are required in indoor settings at both the WIU-Macomb and WIU Quad-Cities campuses (click on the link above for all COVID-19 campus policies).

Western Illinois University Releases Spring 2022 Updated COVID-19 Policies, Procedures

Academic Instruction

For the first two weeks of the semester, instructors whose courses are listed in the spring catalog as being delivered face-to-face may opt to deliver their courses in synchronous (real time) fully remote, hybrid, or completely face-to-face formats. All faculty must inform their chairs of the status of their courses, as soon as determined, for the first two weeks of the semester only. At the end of the three-week period, several variables will be reviewed including; community and campus COVID-19 positivity rates, quarantine and isolation space availability, hospital and ICU bed availability, and overall Beu Health Center COVID-19 caseload to determine when to resume scheduled course delivery for the spring semester. Classroom seating will remain distanced at six feet between seats/stations. Assigned seating and attendance tracking will also continue in the effort to assist with contact tracing if necessary.

Facilities and Environment Protocols

Western Illinois University has implemented a variety of safeguards and procedures for University facilities and environments. Visit wiu.edu/returntocampus to learn more.

Quarantine and Isolation Protocols

At this time, WIU will continue to follow the protocols set forth in the fall 2021 related to isolation and quarantine. All members of the campus community who are directed to isolate or quarantine due to COVID-19 should do so for a period of ten days before returning to campus. The University will review this protocol following the beginning of the spring semester and may elect at that time to adjust quarantine and isolation protocols. For more information related to WIU’s isolation and protocols, visit http://www.wiu.edu/vpas/risk_management_and_emergency_preparedness/coronavirus/campus/quarantine-isolation.php.

Events/Gatherings Scheduling & Guidelines

Organizers should consider whether it is essential that events, gatherings and meetings take place in person, especially during the next few weeks. If possible, it is strongly encouraged that during the first three weeks of the semester events are hosted virtually. Any University-affiliated event or gathering regardless of location MUST be registered, have on file a control plan and submit a Campus Scheduling Form with the University Scheduling and Event Services Office. Events being hosted on the WIU-Quad Cities campus should complete and submit the following form located HERE. Any WIU organization, office or department hosting an event or gathering off campus is required to submit a control plan and is expected to follow all WIU and State of Illinois COVID-19 protocols. Organizations, etc. that traditionally hold events on campus, but wish to move the event off campus, must be able to detail and articulate why an off-campus location serves as a safer option for their attendees within their documented control plan.

Travel (http://www.wiu.edu/policies/covid_travel.php)

The University travel policy provides temporary guidance related to official University travel for the reasons of business, academic and all other purposes, as well as provides consultation for personal travel, during the COVID-19 pandemic. This policy does not supersede existing approval protocols related to University travel. Prior financial approval must be obtained through appropriate channels for any travel related to the business of Western Illinois University (click on the link above for the complete policy).

Protect the ‘Necks Pledge

All members of the WIU community are asked to review and commit to the Protect the ‘Necks Pledge.

Western Illinois University Releases Spring 2022 Updated COVID-19 Policies, Procedures
Sean Leary is an author, director, artist, musician, producer and entrepreneur who has been writing professionally since debuting at age 11 in the pages of the Comics Buyers Guide. An honors graduate of the University of Southern California masters program, he has written over 50 books including the best-sellers The Arimathean, Every Number is Lucky to Someone and We Are All Characters.
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