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Residence Hall and Move-In Procedures

Student putting together a bookcase

 

With the fall semester completed, the Division of Student Affairs and the Department of Residential Living are working to plan for a spring semester that will continue to be different for students living in the residence halls.

We understand that the changes implemented this fall that are carrying forward into spring represent a very different residence hall experience than ever before. These changes include very limited visitation, elevator limits, closure of kitchens and studies, etc. Along with additional cleaning and disinfecting by our housekeeping staff, the changes are in place to slow the transmission of COVID-19.

This information will allow you to understand what to expect when living on campus. Please be aware that many changes will also be in place for other services on campus, including dining services and the Bookstore. As new information becomes available, updates will be sent to your Catamount Email and posted on the Spring 2021 Operations and Procedures website. Should you have any additional questions, please contact Residential Living at housingquestions@wcu.edu.

January 13, 2020

This week, senior campus officials and I have reviewed state and regional COVID-19 activity with UNC System leadership, public health officials, and local hospital representatives in anticipation of the beginning of the spring semester. Due to record COVID-19 cases, strain on critical health care resources related to COVID-19 hospitalizations, and a projected peak in cases in Wwestern North Carolina within the next two to three weeks, we have made the decision to adjust our spring operations with the health of our campus and surrounding community as our guiding principle.

To further safeguard the greater campus community, the return of students to our campus residence halls will be delayed. Move-in will begin Feb. 6th.  Students scheduled to move-in to the residence halls will receive information from Residential Living with information on reentry testing, prorated refunds/credits, and move-in instructions.

COVID Entrance Test Requirements

Move-In Procedures

Residence Hall Policy Changes

High Risk Students

Frequently Asked Questions

COVID Entrance Test Requirements

All WCU students residing on-campus in the residence halls are still expected to take a COVID-19 test within 3 to -5 days of their scheduled move-in date and receive a negative test result.

Students should submit their test results to Residential Living before returning to campus for the Spring 2021 term. If a student does not submit a negative test result, for a test taken 3 to -5 days before their move in, they will not be permitted to return to the residence halls and access to University services will be denied. Residential Living will disable CatCard access to residence halls and meal plans until students have successfully submitted their negative test results. Students that violate this policy will be held accountable pursuant to the Code of Student Conduct and consistent with COVID-related violations. 

Students should take the following steps for testing before their Spring 2021 scheduled move-in date: 

  • Identify where you will take a COVID-19 test. This website from NCDHHS can help in-state students find testing sites in NC.
    For out-of-state students we recommend you contact your primary care physician’s office, a local pharmacy, urgent care, or your local health department for testing resources. 
  • Two weeks prior to your COVID-19 test, and after being tested, please take steps to minimize your potential exposure to COVID-19 and carefully monitor your health. For example, avoid parties and other large gatherings of people, monitor your health for symptoms, and check your temperature daily before you test to be sure you are symptom free. If you are experiencing symptoms, you should quarantine until you have your test results. 
  • After you have received a copy of your test results, complete the Spring 2021 COVID-19 test report submission. This requires a scan, or legible picture, or screenshot of your test result to be uploaded into the test report form. Residential Living will review each test result submission.

If you have a –  

POSITIVE RESULT: 

  • If your test result is positive, you CANNOT return to the residence halls 
  • Follow the instructions of the test provider. 
  • Contact Residential Living to reschedule your move-in date. 

NEGATIVE RESULT: 

  • If your test result is negative, complete the Spring 2021 test report submission form including uploading your test result documentation.  Residential Living will clear you to return to the residence halls (e.g., activate your CatCard, etc.) and email your final confirmation of move-in time to your Catamount email.  

Call Health Services at 828-227-7640 if you have any questions about testing or COVID-19 illness.  Call Residential Living at 828-227-7303 if you have any questions about test result submission and/or move-in for Spring 2021. 

Testing and Submission Dates

Arrival Date Earliest Test Date Latest Result Submission
2/6/2021 2/1/2021 2/5/2021
2/7/2021 2/2/2021 2/6/2021
2/8/2021 2/3/2021 2/7/2021
2/9/2021 2/4/2021 2/8/2021
2/10/2021 2/5/2021 2/9/2021
2/11/2021 2/6/2021 2/10/2021
2/12/2021 2/7/2021 2/11/2021
2/13/2021 2/8/2021 2/12/2021
2/14/2021 2/9/2021 2/13/2021
2/15/2021 2/10/2021 2/14/2021

Residence halls will remain secured until Feb 6, and students will not gain access until their scheduled move-in time. 

Students who have already arrived on-campus for a scheduled university activity will be permitted to remain on campus.  

Move-in Exception Request

Students with special circumstances may request an exception to move-into the residence halls prior to Feb 6, 2021, by completing the Exception Request. This request must be submitted before 5:00 p.m. on Friday, Jan 15.  Information provided on the Exception Request will be verified before approval is provided.  Special circumstances include: 

  • International student status 
  • Homelessness 
  • Other extraordinary circumstance (these will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis) 

The University, at its sole discretion, may deny a special circumstances request. Students with an approved Exception Request may begin moving onto campus as early as Jan 23.   

Regarding Refunds

Western Carolina University will pro-rate residential students’ housing cost daily from Jan 16 to Feb 6. This pro-ration will not be given to students who request and are granted an exception to return to campus before Feb 6.

We will continue to update residential students as further decisions are made.  Please continue referring to the WCU WEBSITE FOR COVID-19.

If you have questions, please do not hesitate to contact Residential Living at 828.227.7303 or email housingquestions@email.wcu.edu. 

HEERF Reimbursements for Move-in and/or Testing Costs

Later this semester Western Carolina University expects to have a new round of federal Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds (HEERF) available. If the guidelines are consistent with last year’s HEERF procedures we expect students may be able to apply for funding and claim COVID-19 expenses like Residential Living COVID-19 testing and/or expense reimbursement.  Information will be posted about the HEERF program as soon as it becomes available.

If you have questions, please do not hesitate to contact Residential Living at 828.227.7303 or email housingquestions@email.wcu.edu. 

Move-In Procedures

The Spring 2021 opening of the residence halls is once again designed with COVID-19 in mind. The first day of classes is scheduled for January 25, but all classes will be delivered via remote instruction through Feb. 12. On Feb. 15, classes will resume as originally scheduled through in-person or hybrid instruction. Classes already scheduled to meet remotely will continue that mode of instruction. 

To further safeguard the greater campus community, the return of students to our campus residence halls will be delayed. Move-in will begin Feb. 6th.  Students scheduled to move-in to the residence halls will receive information from Residential Living with information on reentry testing, prorated refunds/credits, and move-in instructions.

Move-in Times

Move-in time slots will now shift to begin on Feb 6.  Students who have already selected their move-in time slot will be placed in the day of move-in that coincides with their original slot (e.g. students scheduled for Jan 16 will automatically be moved to Feb 6, students scheduled on Jan 17 will automatically be moved to Feb 7, etc.). Should you have any additional questions, please contact Residential Living at housingquestions@wcu.edu.

Daily Times

    • 7:00 am – 9:00 am
    • 9:00 am – 11:00 am
    • 11:00 am – 1:00 pm
    • 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm
    • 3:00 pm – 5:00 pm
    • 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm

Please Note: Each student will be allowed to have up to two individuals assist with moving their items into their rooms.

Students living on campus will receive more information about the move-in sign-ups through email from Residential Living.

If you would like to modify your new move-in date please visit onlinehousing.wcu.edu just as you did to schedule your initial date.

  • Once logged in, please click “New Student” or “Current Student” as appropriate. 
  • On the next page, click on “Time Slot Sign-up.” 
  • Click on the drop down box beside “Choose Date” to update your preferred date and then click on the drop down box beside “Choose Time” and update your preferred time slot for the date you selected. 
  • Click “Next” and a confirmation message of availability for that date and time will show if available. 
  • Click “Finish.”  An email will be sent to your Catamount email account with an initial confirmation. 

Additional Items

We strongly encourage students to bring minimal items when moving in for spring. This is a recommendation that we make to students each and every year, but we want to emphasize even more so this year.

Although we are planning for and hopeful that students will remain on campus throughout the spring semester, the possibility remains that students could need to return home quickly and should be able to remove their belongings quickly.

Residence Hall Policy and Procedure Changes

Most aspects of residence hall life were modified for fall semester and remained changed for the spring semester, to lessen the chance for transmission of COVID-19. These modifications are intended to encourage as much social distancing as possible.

  • Residents will be expected to maintain the recommended six feet distance between themselves and others at all times.
  • Elevators will be limited to 2 passengers per car.
  • Where possible, all community kitchens, lounges, studies, and lobby spaces will be locked and not accessible to residents. Closure of these spaces serves several purposes, but most importantly, this step removes areas where groups gather, while also providing more time for housekeeping to focus on cleaning and disinfecting high-touch spaces. 
  • Visitation in WCU residence halls will be suspended for the 2020-2021 academic year. Students will not be allowed to bring guests, including other students, into their residence halls.
  • Students living in the same residence hall will be able to visit one another, but each room may only have one guest at a time.

Frequently Asked Questions

Move-in time slots will now shift to begin on Feb 6.  Students who have already selected their move-in time slot will be placed in the day of move-in that coincides with their original slot (e.g. students scheduled for Jan 16 will automatically be moved to Feb 6, students scheduled on Jan 17 will automatically be moved to Feb 7, etc.). 

Additionally, all WCU students residing on-campus in the residence halls are expected to take a COVID-19 test within 3-5 days of their scheduled move-in date and receive a negative test result. Students should submit their test results to Residential Living before returning to campus for the Spring 2021 term.

If a student does not submit a negative test result, for a test taken 3-5 days before their move in, they will not be permitted to return to the residence halls and access to University services will be denied. Residential Living will disable CatCard access to residence halls and meal plans until students have successfully submitted their negative test results. Students that violate this policy will be held accountable pursuant to the Code of Student Conduct and consistent with COVID-related violations.

There will be a limited number of spots available per building per session, to allow for appropriate social distancing throughout the process. Instructions on how to sign-up for a time will be included in an email to all residential students from Residential Living.

Daily

  • 7:00 am – 9:00 am
  • 9:00 am – 11:00 am
  • 11:00 am – 1:00 pm
  • 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm
  • 3:00 pm – 5:00 pm
  • 5:00 pm – 7:00 pm

If you would like to modify your new move-in date please visit onlinehousing.wcu.edu just as you did to schedule your initial date.

  • Once logged in, please click “New Student” or “Current Student” as appropriate. 
  • On the next page, click on “Time Slot Sign-up.” 
  • Click on the drop down box beside “Choose Date” to update your preferred date and then click on the drop down box beside “Choose Time” and update your preferred time slot for the date you selected. 
  • Click “Next” and a confirmation message of availability for that date and time will show if available. 
  • Click “Finish.”  An email will be sent to your Catamount email account with an initial confirmation. 

Each student will be allowed to have up to two individuals assist with moving their items into their rooms. 

  • Residents will be expected to maintain the recommended six feet distance between themselves and others at all times. This includes when riding elevators that will limit passengers to two per car.
  • Where possible, all community kitchens, lounges, studies, and lobby spaces will be locked and not accessible to residents.  Closure of these spaces serves several purposes, but most importantly, this step removes areas where groups gather, while also providing more time for housekeeping to focus on cleaning and disinfecting high-touch spaces.
  • Most, if not all, residence hall programs will take place virtually.
  • Visitation in WCU residence halls will be suspended for the 2020-2021 academic year. Students will not be allowed to bring guests, including other students, into their residence halls.
  • Students living in the same residence hall will be able to visit one another, but each room may only have one guest at a time.

We strongly encourage students to bring minimal items when moving in for spring. This is a recommendation that we make to students each and every year, but we want to emphasize even more so this year.

Although we are planning for and hopeful that students will remain on campus throughout the spring semester, the possibility remains that students could need to return home quickly and should be able to remove their belongings quickly.

  1. Identify where you will take a COVID-19 test through NCDHHS website can help in-state students find testing sites in NC:
    For out-of-state students we recommend you contact your primary care physician’s office, a local pharmacy, urgent care, or your local health department for testing resources.
  2. Two weeks prior to your COVID-19 test, and after being tested, please take steps to minimize your potential exposure to COVID-19 and carefully monitor your health.
    For example, avoid parties and other large gatherings of people, monitor your health for symptoms, and check your temperature daily before you test to be sure you are symptom free. If you are experiencing symptoms, you should quarantine until you have your test results.

 

Arrival Date Earliest Test Date Latest Result Submission
2/6/2021 2/1/2021 2/5/2021
2/7/2021 2/2/2021 2/6/2021
2/8/2021 2/3/2021 2/7/2021
2/9/2021 2/4/2021 2/8/2021
2/10/2021 2/5/2021 2/9/2021
2/11/2021 2/6/2021 2/10/2021
2/12/2021 2/7/2021 2/11/2021
2/13/2021 2/8/2021 2/12/2021
2/14/2021 2/9/2021 2/13/2021
2/15/2021 2/10/2021 2/14/2021

Residence halls will remain secured until Feb 6, and students will not gain access until their scheduled move-in time. 

Students who have already arrived on-campus for a scheduled university activity will be permitted to remain on campus.  

Students with special circumstances may request an exception to move-into the residence halls prior to Feb 8, 2021, by completing the Exception Request. This request must be submitted before 5:00 p.m. on Friday, Jan 15.  Information provided on the Exception Request will be verified before approval is provided.  Special circumstances include: 

  • International student status 
  • Homelessness 
  • Other extraordinary circumstance (these will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis) 

The University, at its sole discretion, may deny a special circumstances request. Students with an approved Exception Request may begin moving onto campus as early as Jan 23.   

Regarding the question of refunds, Western Carolina University will pro-rate residential students’ housing cost daily from Jan 16 to Feb 8. This pro-ration will not be given to students who request and are granted an exception to return to campus before Feb 6.

We will continue to update residential students as further decisions are made.  Please continue referring to the WCU website for COVID-19. 

If you have questions, please do not hesitate to contact Residential Living at 828.227.7303 or email housingquestions@email.wcu.edu. 

 

After you have received a copy of your test results, complete the Spring 2021 COVID-19 test report submission form. This requires a scan, or legible picture, or screenshot of your test result to be uploaded into the test report form. Residential Living will review each test result submission. If you have a –

Positive Result

If your test result is positive, you CANNOT return to the residence halls.

Follow the instructions of the test provider. Contact Residential Living to reschedule your move-in date.

Negative Result

If your test result is negative, complete the Spring 2021 test report submission form including uploading your test result documentation.  Residential Living will clear you to return to the residence halls (e.g., activate your CatCard, etc.) and email your final confirmation of move-in time to your Catamount email.

Questions?

Call Health Services at 828-227-7640 if you have any questions about testing or COVID-19 illness.

Call Residential Living at 828-227-7303 if you have any questions about test result submission and/or move-in for Spring 2021.

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