To: The Stevens Community
From: Marybeth Murphy, Vice President for Enrollment Management and Student Affairs
Date: December 8, 2020
Subject: Health Advisory: Additional COVID-19 Cases and On-Campus Test Results; Travel Advisories and December On-campus Testing Dates

Please review the important information below as we work together to promote a stronger, safer Stevens. All members of the Stevens community must abide by the Stevens Health Honor Code whether on campus, off campus, or in your home community and follow all requirements, including wearing a face mask, social distancing, frequent hand washing, and avoiding non-essential travel and gatherings outside your immediate household.

As we enter the last weeks of the semester, please do all you can to reduce or eliminate your interactions with those outside of your household. Not only are you at risk when you are in contact with someone within six feet or without a mask, you put your roommates, teammates, friends, family, and neighbors at risk as well. The health and safety of our families and communities depend on our behavior until a vaccine is available.

Update on Positive COVID-19 Cases

Since my email of December 1, seven students and two staff members have tested positive for COVID-19. Both staff members have been working on campus. Of the seven students, one is studying remotely and six are studying on campus.

All COVID-19 positive individuals are isolating and their close contacts have been identified and notified to quarantine. In cases where students have attended classes or employees have been on campus, their classmates, instructors and co-workers who are not close contacts but may have had minimal contact have been notified to monitor their health for symptoms and continue weekly testing. Please be aware that Stevens has a robust protocol for disinfecting areas on campus where those testing positive COVID-19 reside, take classes or work. This is in addition to the cleaning already in place.

The CDC recently revised its guidelines and shortened the amount of time required for quarantine. However, since Hoboken and the surrounding communities are seeing increases in COVID-19 infection and are considered “hotspots,” the Hoboken Health Department will continue to require that those exposed to COVID-19 positive individuals quarantine for the full 14 days. 

Update on COVID-19 Test Results from Bergen New Bridge Medical Center (BNBMC)

We have received all of the 1,068 test results from on-campus testing conducted on Wednesday, December 2 and Thursday, December 3 from Bergen New Bridge Medical Center (BNBMC) and seven were positive. 

Please remember to register for your weekly test and schedule your appointment for on-campus COVID-19 testing for Wednesday, December 9 or Thursday, December 10. It is important that everyone who is coming to campus is tested weekly. Please be aware that coming to campus without being tested is a violation of the Stevens Health Honor Code.
 
Based on CDC guidance, COVID-19 re-testing is not required for 90 days after the beginning of COVID-19 infection or illness for persons who have tested positive for COVID-19, have completed their isolation period and are asymptomatic because evidence to date suggests that reinfection does not occur within this time window. Please contact Student Health Services if you are uncertain about when you must resume weekly testing. 

December On-campus Testing Dates and Locations

Please remember to register for your weekly test and schedule your appointment for on-campus COVID-19 testing. These are the December dates and locations for testing. January dates will be announced shortly.

December 9 and 10: (9 am – 12 pm; 1 pm – 4 pm) Canavan Arena 
December 16 and 17: (9 am – 12 pm; 1 pm – 4 pm) Walker Gym
December 21 (Monday): (9 am – 12 pm) Walker Gym
December 28 (Monday): (9 am – 12 pm) Walker Gym

New State of NJ Guidance on Indoor and Outdoor Gatherings

The State of New Jersey has limited the number of individuals at indoor gatherings that are not religious services or celebrations, political activities, wedding ceremonies, funerals, or memorial services to 10 persons. Any private residence or residential unit is treated as a single “room”. Outdoor gatherings are now limited to 25. For more detailed information, please review https://covid19.nj.gov/

At this time, we have learned that this guidance does not impact occupancy limits for classrooms or dining facilities at colleges and universities. However, we are limiting indoor gatherings and events to 10 participants. Outdoor gatherings on campus will be limited to 25 with appropriate social distancing precautions.

Hoboken Imposes Fines of up to $1,000 for Indoor Gatherings of more than 10

Due to the increase in COVID-19 positive cases, the City of Hoboken has approved a measure to allow the Hoboken Police Department to issue fines of up to $1,000 for house parties that exceed 10 people and violate other ordinances. 

Guidance on Travel to New Jersey from States and Territories with High Rates of COVID-19

New Jersey has recently changed its requirements for quarantine. At this time, travelers and residents returning from any U.S. state or territory beyond the immediate region (New York, Connecticut, Pennsylvania, and Delaware) must self-quarantine and be tested for COVID-19 approximately five days after arrival. No person who is required to quarantine pursuant to this restriction will be permitted on Stevens’ campus until the conclusion of such quarantine and COVID-19 testing. Check here for updates.

Reporting COVID-19 Symptoms and/or Positive COVID-19 Results

If any student, faculty, or staff member (living on campus or off campus) experiences COVID-19 symptoms, tests positive for COVID-19, or has close contact with an individual who tests positive for COVID-19, please self-isolate and immediately contact Stevens Student Health Services at 201-216-5678 or [email protected]. This protects you and those with whom you have been in close contact.

Reminder: COVID-19 Testing for Students, Faculty and Staff Not Coming to Campus

While you may not be coming to campus this semester, please monitor your health and be tested for COVID-19 if you have symptoms or have had close contact with someone with symptoms or who has tested positive for COVID-19. For NJ residents, the State of NJ provides a list of testing sites. It is important that we do all we can to protect our communities, especially our hometown of Hoboken, from the spread of COVID-19. Hoboken is offering COVID-19 testing for Hoboken residents at several locations. Positive test results, for students living on or off campus as well as faculty and staff, should be reported to the Stevens Student Health Services (see above).

Additional Resources on COVID-19