After months of remote academic instruction and institutional operation, teams of students, faculty and staff have worked to develop a comprehensive plan to prepare East Stroudsburg University for your return to a COVID-ready environment. Remember that you play a vital role in making the fall semester a positive experience for all on campus!

After months of remote academic instruction and institutional operation, teams of students, faculty and staff have worked to develop a comprehensive plan to prepare East Stroudsburg University for your return to a COVID-ready environment. Remember that you play a vital role in making the fall semester a positive experience for all on campus!

East Stroudsburg University has made a significant financial and personnel investment in the development of a plan intended to keep everyone in our campus community safe, healthy, and engaged as we continue to battle the invisible yet dangerous pandemic. Two specific campus teams that are guiding our efforts are the Academic Continuity Team (ACT), led by our Provost, Joanne Z. Bruno, J.D., and the Integration and Communication Task Force, led by ESU’s Director of Environmental Health and Safety, Nathan Black. Together, these groups comprised of students, staff representing AFSCME, SCUPA and managers, administrators and faculty representing APSCUF, UWCC, Senate and Chair’s Council, have developed plans to re-open ESU that are now available to you for review below.

The guide is a fluid document and follows guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the Pennsylvania Department of Health (DOH), the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) and the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE). Please be sure that you visit the site from time to time for updates. While the Guide focuses on our return to campus, the document also includes contingency planning should we be forced to return to fully remote instruction and services. For now, here is a snapshot of what you can expect when you arrive on campus:

  • Moving In - Students scheduled to move into ESU’s residence hall will do so during the week of August 24. Instructions on how our staff will conduct move-in will be shared with you in early August. Classes will begin on Monday, August 31 at 8 a.m. We intend to follow our current academic calendar for Fall 2020 but are prepared to change academic instruction quickly if necessary.
  • Pathways to Learning - Courses will be delivered in a variety of ways we are calling “Flex Fall,” which will enable faculty to adapt their fall course delivery to include hybrid delivery (some face-to-face combined with online instruction) as well as preparing for a fully remote delivery in the case of large classes (excess of 60 students) and for contingency purposes. Face-to-face instruction will look different. Additional details are shared in the Guide.
  • Dining Options - Dining areas are being reconfigured to allow distancing during on-site dining. There will also be to-go options available.
  • Masks and Social Distancing - Students, faculty and staff will be required to wear a mask and maintain social distancing in the classrooms, common areas, and public spaces to the extent possible. An ESU mask will be issued to every employee and student at the start of the fall semester.
  • Staying Healthy - Cleaning of all public spaces and common areas will be addressed periodically throughout the day to keep everyone safe. Hand sanitizing stations and plastic shielding will be installed in key academic areas and offices around campus, and appropriate signage is in place to remind everyone of traffic flow and other guidelines within all buildings. If anyone within our campus community presents with COVID symptoms, they will need to be tested immediately. Plans are in place to quarantine those who test positive and we are also investigating ways to do contact tracing.

To be successful this fall, it will be critical that ALL members of our campus community – students, faculty, and staff – continue to follow CDC guidelines to: wear a mask; maintain a social distance of six feet whenever possible, and clean all high-touch areas that you come in contact with on a regular basis.

Policies and procedures for those who do not adhere to University health and safety requirements associated with COVID will be in place to ensure we keep our campus, our community and one another safe.

Lastly, as announced at the start of the spring semester, I’ll be retiring as your president effective July 31, 2020, but I leave the campus and your future in the trusted hands of Interim President Ken Long and other members of ESU’s senior leadership team. I hope that all of you will continue to enjoy these beautiful summer days and come back to ESU this fall ready to face any challenge that comes your way.

Marcia G. Welsh, Ph.D.
President

East Stroudsburg University has made a significant financial and personnel investment in the development of a plan intended to keep everyone in our campus community safe, healthy, and engaged as we continue to battle the invisible yet dangerous pandemic. Two specific campus teams that are guiding our efforts are the Academic Continuity Team (ACT), led by our Provost, Joanne Z. Bruno, J.D., and the Integration and Communication Task Force, led by ESU’s Director of Environmental Health and Safety, Nathan Black. Together, these groups comprised of students, staff representing AFSCME, SCUPA and managers, administrators and faculty representing APSCUF, UWCC, Senate and Chair’s Council, have developed plans to re-open ESU that are now available to you for review below.

The guide is a fluid document and follows guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the Pennsylvania Department of Health (DOH), the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) and the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE). Please be sure that you visit the site from time to time for updates. While the Guide focuses on our return to campus, the document also includes contingency planning should we be forced to return to fully remote instruction and services. For now, here is a snapshot of what you can expect when you arrive on campus:

  • Moving In - Students scheduled to move into ESU’s residence hall will do so during the week of August 24. Instructions on how our staff will conduct move-in will be shared with you in early August. Classes will begin on Monday, August 31 at 8 a.m. We intend to follow our current academic calendar for Fall 2020 but are prepared to change academic instruction quickly if necessary.
  • Pathways to Learning - Courses will be delivered in a variety of ways we are calling “Flex Fall,” which will enable faculty to adapt their fall course delivery to include hybrid delivery (some face-to-face combined with online instruction) as well as preparing for a fully remote delivery in the case of large classes (excess of 60 students) and for contingency purposes. Face-to-face instruction will look different. Additional details are shared in the Guide.
  • Dining Options - Dining areas are being reconfigured to allow distancing during on-site dining. There will also be to-go options available.
  • Masks and Social Distancing - Students, faculty and staff will be required to wear a mask and maintain social distancing in the classrooms, common areas, and public spaces to the extent possible. An ESU mask will be issued to every employee and student at the start of the fall semester.
  • Staying Healthy - Cleaning of all public spaces and common areas will be addressed periodically throughout the day to keep everyone safe. Hand sanitizing stations and plastic shielding will be installed in key academic areas and offices around campus, and appropriate signage is in place to remind everyone of traffic flow and other guidelines within all buildings. If anyone within our campus community presents with COVID symptoms, they will need to be tested immediately. Plans are in place to quarantine those who test positive and we are also investigating ways to do contact tracing.

To be successful this fall, it will be critical that ALL members of our campus community – students, faculty, and staff – continue to follow CDC guidelines to: wear a mask; maintain a social distance of six feet whenever possible, and clean all high-touch areas that you come in contact with on a regular basis.

Policies and procedures for those who do not adhere to University health and safety requirements associated with COVID will be in place to ensure we keep our campus, our community and one another safe.

Lastly, as announced at the start of the spring semester, I’ll be retiring as your president effective July 31, 2020, but I leave the campus and your future in the trusted hands of Interim President Ken Long and other members of ESU’s senior leadership team. I hope that all of you will continue to enjoy these beautiful summer days and come back to ESU this fall ready to face any challenge that comes your way.

Marcia G. Welsh, Ph.D.
President


East Stroudsburg University’s plan to return to campus adheres to the guidelines and recommendations provided by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), the Pennsylvania Department of Health (DOH), the Pennsylvania Department of Education (PDE) and the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE).

ESU will also coordinate all campus operations within the three phases of re-opening Pennsylvania as outlined by Governor Tom Wolf.  Two specific campus teams that are guiding our efforts are the Academic Continuity Team (ACT), led by our Provost, Joanne Z. Bruno, J.D., and the Integration and Communication Task Force, led by ESU’s Director of Environmental Health and Safety, Nathan Black.

Jump to details on General Preparations, Monitoring Campus, Classes & Academic Support, Commencement and Graduation, Housing and Dining, Student Services, Athletics, Student Activities, Transportation and Travel, CARES Act & Refunds, Communications, and Coordination with Local Public Health Officials.

General Preparations

  • All divisions on campus are coordinating efforts to ensure that students, faculty and staff have proper personal protective equipment (PPE) upon their arrival. All members of the ESU campus community and guests are required to wear masks in all public spaces and to practice social distancing (six-feet apart when possible). ESU will supply two reusable, washable cloth face masks to every student and employee. If you already have masks you are encouraged to continue to use them, and be sure to follow the CDC guidance on washing and sanitizing masks. Additional masks will be available for purchase at the bookstore.
  • Signage is in place in all campus buildings to remind everyone of traffic flow and other recommended CDC guidelines. Policies and procedures have been developed for those who do not adhere to University health and safety requirements associated with COVID.
  • All non-instructional gatherings (academic or otherwise) at ESU will be limited to 250 in accordance with guidelines to re-open Pennsylvania in the green phase. Those attending gatherings in public places will be required to wear a mask and also practice social distancing.
  • All individuals entering all buildings on campus must wear a face mask and continue to wear a face mask when in hallways, classrooms, public spaces, common areas, and during office visits.
  • Any meetings among faculty, staff and students should continue to be conducted remotely as much as possible.
  • We are asking everyone affiliated with East Stroudsburg University to monitor their own health on a daily basis. If you do not feel well, stay home, stay away from others and seek medical advice if needed.
  • Whether on or off campus, it is expected that everyone will maintain social distancing at all times.

Monitoring Campus

  • Any member of the campus community who is symptomatic needs to be tested as well as those who have been exposed to an individual who has tested positive for COVID-19. Testing is available at Lehigh Valley Hospital-Pocono.  Those who test positive for COVID-19 will be quarantined on campus in a residence hall that has been designated specifically for those who are infected.
  • A plan for contact tracing is being developed and will be available in the near future.

Classes & Academic Support

  • There is no change at this time to the academic calendar. Classes for Fall 2020 at East Stroudsburg University will begin on August 31, 2020. The anticipated final day of classes will be December 11, 2020 with final exams being administered during the week of December 14, 2020. ESU has prepared its technology for all modes of academic delivery in the event there is another wave of COVID-19.
  • Guiding principles for teaching for “Fall Flex” include a mix of delivery options including face-to-face, hybrid (a blend of face-to-face and remote instruction) and online classes.
  • Contingencies are being developed to adjust the academic calendar in the event Monroe County changes from “Green” to “Red” or “Yellow” as determined by The Pennsylvania Department of Health as evidenced by a rise in the number of Covid-19 cases.
  • All individuals entering all buildings on campus must wear a face mask and continue to wear a face mask when in hallways, classrooms, public spaces, common areas, and during office visits.
  • Classroom occupancy will be reduced to allow for social distancing. All classrooms on campus will be reduced to a maximum of 50% of the normal occupancy. Large lecture halls, such as Abelloff and Beers, will be reduced to 30% of normal capacity to allow for distancing yet allowing larger classes to have in-person instruction. A reduction in the frequency of in-person class meetings and implementing blended course delivery modalities will occur to provide a balance between in-person and remote learning.
  • Disinfection materials will be near the entrance of each classroom for students and faculty to utilize as needed.
  • Additional hand sanitizer stations will be located in the hallways of academic buildings, as much as supplies allow. The best option continues to be frequent handwashing lasting at least 20 seconds with soap.
  • Labs and studios will be conducted face to face while reducing the number of students at any one time in the classrooms/labs to ensure compliance with safely/heath measures.
  • Student teaching, internships field placements and clinicals will resume in coordination with the host agency and as long as appropriate safety protocols are in place. The host agency may have additional protocols in place that need to be followed.
  • Fall 2020 updated course schedules will be communicated by the Office of the Registrar in the coming weeks.

Commencement and Graduation

  • When will Commencement ceremonies occur?
    ESU plans to provide an on-campus Commencement experience for the Class of 2020 and December 2020 graduates based on the current academic calendar. However those plans may change depending upon any additional outbreaks of COVID-19 and/or any CDC, PA Department of Health and Department of Education updated guidelines. Currently, it is unknown if or how the guidelines will change, and therefore future commencement ceremonies may not be the same as those held in the past. Updates on commencement plans or cancellations will be provided during the fall 2020 semester.

Housing and Dining

  • Traditional Fall move-in to on-campus housing will occur the week of August 24th. Students living on campus will receive their housing assignments soon. A staggered schedule for move-in will be announced in the coming weeks to reduce the number of individuals in the residence halls at any given time. Check-in will be alternated with a maximum of two family members allowed to assist with move-in. Social distancing and masks will be required. Details about move-in will be provided to each student/family in the coming weeks.
  • Dining areas are being reconfigured to allow distancing during on-site dining. There will also be to-go options available.
  • In the event a student becomes ill, procedures are in development to allow for isolation and quarantine, should this be necessary. Contact tracing protocols are also being developed to limit the spread of Covid-19 as much as possible.
  • How will move-in function for on-campus housing?

    All resident students will check in at the lower parking lot behind the Science and Technology Center, and then be sent to their residence hall from there to unload. Vehicles will be greeted by the Warrior Welcome to Campus Volunteers, who will help them unload and escort them to their room. After unloading, vehicles will immediately be sent to centralized parking locations as determined by ESU Police. Please keep in mind that parties may not exceed more than three persons, including the student moving in. No minors under 14 are allowed at ESU's campus, masks/face coverings must be worn at all times, and there will be a one-hour visitation period for all guests. 

    In an effort to minimize travel, ESU will be offering a packing and shipping option. To use this service, you must register there and buy pre-paid labels and then you can have your belongings shipped right to your room at ESU. Only FedEx and UPS can be used as shipping options. More detailed information will follow on this program. In order to provide a smooth transition to campus, we will have sign-up times for students to move into their assigned on-campus residential facility from August 26 to August 28 for new students, and from August 26 through August 30 for continuing students. This will allow for social distancing and additional cleaning protocols to occur.  You will receive information by July 13 regarding move-in details via email, ESU’s official communication method.

  • Can I move-in earlier than the move-in dates listed above?
    Only pre-approved student-athletes or other students can move in early. If you are part of an organization that is permitted to move in early due to an on-campus commitment, your name and move-in date will be provided to ESU and you will receive communication about this from your coach or affiliated office on campus.
  • What steps are both ESU traditional housing and UPI housing (The Suites and The Ridge) doing to keep the residence halls clean?
    In an effort to ensure the well-being of our students, both ESU traditional housing and UPI housing will have custodial staff cleaning high traffic areas and touch points more frequently. We will also modify the use of our building’s common areas and amenities to ensure we remain compliant with federal, state, and local guidelines.  We will require students and staff to follow CDC guidelines. These and all other guidelines will be posted throughout our communities and they must be adhered to at all times.
  • Are there new guidelines for living on campus?

    Yes.  Students living on campus and their parent/guardian/guarantor will be required to follow the guidelines outlined by ESU and federal, state, county or local governmental agencies.

    • Face Coverings – Requirement of personal face coverings/masks once you leave your room door and enter the hallway and as you navigate campus.
    • Building Access – Residence Halls will only have one entrance/exit available at all locations. Every student will need to check-in at the front entrance with a ESU staff member each time they enter the building. Students may be required to wait in line to be checked into the building.
    • Guest Policy – non-residential outside guests WILL NOT BE ALLOWED into the residential halls. Students with disabilities should contact the Office of Accessible Services Individualized for Students (OASIS) for approval of personal care attendants.
    • Amenities – Building amenities will have reduced occupancy to maintain social distancing guidelines.
    • Elevators – Limited to 2 persons per car, unless related or part of a family unit.
    • Family unit is defined as a group of students who share an apartment, suite or bathroom.
  • What happens if I sign a Housing contract and my financial situation changes?
    ESU is here to work with you and your family during this difficult time, and UPI has committed money from UPI Housing Scholarships for financial hardships. Please email Dr. Gene Kelly, the Dean of Students, to set up an appointment to discuss your individual situation.
  • What if I need to cancel my Housing Contract?
    If you need to cancel your housing contract, we recommend doing so before August 1, 2020 to avoid paying for the entire yearly contract. You may cancel by emailing David Campbell.  We cannot guarantee that you will be released from your housing contract if you cancel after August 1.
  • Is there a possibility my housing assignment could change?
    ESU will continue to work in coordination with local, state, and federal guidelines regarding acceptable occupancy in each room/suite/apartment.  If housing assignments need to be modified to comply with occupancy recommendations, we will notify students as quickly as possible. 
  • Will I be tripled in Fall 2020?
    No, Residential and Dining Services will not offer tripling as an option at ESU this fall. 
  • What happens if on-campus housing closes for the Fall semester?
    In the event that on-campus housing closes before or during the Fall 2020 due to COVID-19 and students are required to move out, ESU will provide students with an adjustment for the unused portions of the semester.
  • Will the cafeteria be open? If so, to whom?

    The cafeteria, Dansbury Commons, will be open beginning on August 20 for those who are on campus.  Hours of operation are: Monday-Friday, 7:30 a.m.-8 p.m., and Saturday-Sunday, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. and 4:30-7 p.m.

    All ESU community members with a valid ESU identification card may use the dining hall and other facilities. Outside guests will not be permitted to dine in any of our facilities. The dining hall and retail outlets will only have one entrance/exit available at all locations. Students may be required to wait in line to be admitted into the facility. All dining facilities will have reduced occupancy to maintain social distancing guidelines.

    Some modifications to daily menu selections and station offerings will be made to comply with federal, state, and local guidelines. In order to best protect our ESU community, there will be no self-service stations.

    In an effort to ensure the well-being of our students, ESU Dining will have staff cleaning high traffic areas and touch points more frequently. We will also modify the use of our building’s common areas and amenities to ensure we remain compliant with federal, state, and local guidelines.  We will require students and staff to follow CDC guidelines. These and all other guidelines will be posted throughout our facilities and they must be adhered to at all times.

Student Services

  • Is the Lehigh Valley Center open?
    The Lehigh Valley Center, as an alternate location of ESU, will open on August 31 with the rest of campus. Classes may be offered in a hybrid version as part of FlexFall 2020.
  • What is the status of the Schisler Museum & McMunn Planetarium?
    The Schisler Museum & McMunn Planetarium will be open by appointment starting on Saturday, August 29. The Museum and Planetarium will be available for appointments on Saturdays from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • What is the status of the Professional Testing Center?
    The Professional Testing Center will be open on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 8:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m. starting on Tuesday, September 8.
  • Will Stony Acres be open?

    Canoeing, fishing, hiking, and disc golf will be open to the ESU community from dawn to dusk. Proper social distancing of 6 feet will be enforced.  Reservations for camping and cabins will be available and must be made in advance. For more information and reservations, please contact Madeline Constantine at mconstantine@esu.edu or (570) 223-8316.

  • Will the Recreation Center be open?

    Yes, Mattioli Recreation Center and RecB will both be open. There will be social distancing put in place for equipment, virtual fitness classes, and some restrictions on activities offered. Equipment will be disinfected regularly to ensure everyone’s safety.

  • Will the University Center and Bookstore be open?

    The University Center and Bookstore are both open.

    University Center

    • The University Center spaces will be operating at lower capacities to comply with state and local health guidelines.
    • Some spaces will be closed throughout the day to allow for deep cleaning.
    • CDC guidelines for social distancing implementation may results in more time needed for food services.

    Bookstore

    • Hours of operation will be posted on the bookstore website.
    • Fall textbooks: All students are highly encouraged to pre-order their Fall textbooks and select for either in store pick-up or shipping to home. To pre-order, use the link in the student portal or visit the bookstore website.
    • In-store transactions: Masks will be required inside the bookstore and social distancing will be practiced.
    • Spring textbook rental returns: Check your email for detailed information about printing a free UPS return label or return your rentals in-person, in-store.
    • Any questions or requests can be emailed to Joe Knorr, bookstore manager, jknorr@esu.edu.
  • Is the Warrior Food Pantry operating?

    The Warrior Food Pantry plans to resume service on Tuesday, September 1. This resource, located at St. Matthew’s Church (78 Ridgeway Street, East Stroudsburg), operates each Tuesday from 2-4 p.m. Social distancing and mask protocols will be required.

    For those wishing to donate items, please visit the Warrior Food Pantry website for a list of helpful items and drop-off locations.

    Additionally, for a complete list of available community meals in the area, please see the resource guide. In the guide you will find the phone numbers to each community meal, please call ahead before arriving to ensure that they continue to be operational. The Salvation Army in East Stroudsburg is a resource for food as well and can be contacted at (570) 421-3050.

Athletics

  • ESU will adhere to guidelines from the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) and the NCAA. Student-athletes will receive updates on team activities from our athletic director and their coaches as we approach the fall semester.
  • What is the status of varsity athletics?
    The University will follow the guidance of the Pennsylvania State Athletic Conference (PSAC) and its board although final decisions will be made by ESU as CDC and DOH guidance evolves.
  • Will athletic events be held on campus and will athletic teams be able to travel?
    CDC as well as Commonwealth phased opening guidelines for other gatherings will be followed, and we will update the campus community as these guidelines evolve. The University also continues to be in close contact with the PSAC for additional guidance regarding regulations during campus re-entry.

Student Activities and Events

  • On-campus social events will be scheduled on a case-by-case basis, depending on anticipated crowd size and space availability. The Pennsylvania Department of Health currently allows up to 250 attendees to attend non-instructional events within green counties, provided social distancing requirements can be met.
  • Capacity in on-campus spaces will be limited or removed all together for the foreseeable future. We ask for your understanding in this matter.

Transportation and Travel

  • Shuttle service will be provided to all ESU students. Masks and social distancing will be required. See specific information about the shuttle schedule.
  • University-sponsored travel will be curtailed unless deemed essential and approved by the President or designee(s).
  • Is ESU canceling study abroad programs or restricting travel to countries other than China?
    All university-sponsored international or out-of-state travel/trips for students, faculty, or staff is ESU curtailed unless approved by the university president (or designee). The university’s standard processes for travel authorization should require the signature of the president (or designee) for travel to be authorized. This includes study abroad, exchange programs, and short–term study trips.
  • How is essential travel impacted?

    Essential travel for University business will be approved by normal channels within the Commonwealth as long as:

    • Travel within Pennsylvania should be done with caution and awareness of the pandemic conditions at the planned destination and in the communities en route to the destination.
    • Guidance from the CDC and the Commonwealth should be followed when travelling with multiple persons in one vehicle.
    • If an approved traveler is exposed to COVID-19 while participating in university-sponsored travel, the traveler must follow the self-isolation protocols established by the university upon return.

    For all other travel that is essential to University business but is international or out of state will require approval by the university president (or designee). The university’s standard processes for travel authorization should require the signature of the president (or designee) for travel to be authorized.

CARES Act & Refunds

  • What exactly is the CARES Act Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund and how can I apply to help with my current financial challenges?

    The CARES Act Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund provides funding to individual colleges and universities in the U.S. in order to provide financial grants to students who are facing financial challenges as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Department of Education has provided general guidelines to indicate how funds are to be distributed and has given each institution discretion on how funds will be disbursed.

    During phase one of our plan to distribute CARES Act funds, we have provided emergency assistance to those who applied for help and also to some students attending summer classes - this phase of the program is complete and applications are no longer being accepted.

    We are planning to distribute additional funds from the CARES Act Funds during the Fall 2020 semester to assist enrolled students who have financial challenges created by the COVID-19 disruption. More information will be made available to students concerning the Fall 2020 plan as we get closer to the start of the Fall 2020 semester.

    For more information see CARES Act Disclosures.

Communications

  • ESU’s Office of University Relations will generate appropriate messaging and other communication initiatives to share updates. University relations will use e-mail (ESU’s official communication channel), the University website and (when appropriate) social media to share messages with students, faculty, staff, parents and the community-at-large.

Coordination with Local Public Health Officials

  • ESU’s Director of Health and Wellness will communicate any identified cases of COVID-19 to local hospital officials and the DOH as per protocol.  The director will also activate plans for quarantine as needed.

Submit Your Questions

We understand that students, parents and other members of our ESU community have questions during this ongoing situation.

We ask that you please closely review the above FAQ’s, and be assured that important campus information will be shared via ESU email (to students, faculty and staff), on this page, on the ESU parents page, and via social media.

If you need further assistance, the form below is available to submit your questions:

Contact Us

If you have questions about ESU's plans for the fall, please use the submission form above.

Contact Information

Campus Address
161 Smith Street, Suite 100
Phone:
(570) 422-3235
Title of Department Leader
Nathan Black
Name
Manager, Environmental, Health and Safety