Health & Safety at Walnut Hill College

Last Updated: March 23, 2020

CAMPUS CLOSED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE

In compliance with Mayor Kenney’s order to stay home during the current health crisis, Walnut Hill College, Bistro Perrier, and The Pastry Shop will be closed until further notice. Please stay tuned for updates on our operations.

Coronavirus Update

Walnut Hill College continues to closely monitor the coronavirus (COVID-19) and its potential impact on our community. The health, welfare, and safety of our students, faculty, and staff is the top priority for WHC leadership. We have assembled a COVID-19 Health and Safety Team to align our response and preparedness with recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Pennsylvania Department of Health, and the Philadelphia Department of Public Health.

Important Event Updates

3/11/2020: NOTICE OF GRADUATION POSTPONEMENT

3/12/2020: NOTICE OF FRESHMAN SHOWCASE POSTPONEMENT

3/12/2020: NOTICE OF CONTINUING CLASSES

3/13/2020: NOTICE OF SPRING BREAK MODIFICATION

3/18/2020: NOTICE OF REMOTE LEARNING CLASS CONTINUATION

WATCH: What is Coronavirus (COVID-19)?

Source: Johns Hopkins Medicine (YouTube)

Take Preventive Measures

We advocate taking a common-sense approach to prevention that promotes the all-around well-being of our campus community. Walnut Hill College encourages our faculty, staff, and students to:

  • Carry tissues to cover your mouth and nose if you cough or sneeze.
  • Clean and disinfect common surfaces.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay at home if you feel sick, and avoid close contact with others.
  • Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer if you are not in a location where handwashing is convenient.
  • Stay informed and follow advice from health authorities.

We will continue to monitor this outbreak and provide updates to our campus community. We understand that following the progression of the coronavirus (COVID-19) can be a source of stress. Faculty and staff will be available to discuss questions or concerns that you may have. The team at Walnut Hill College wants you to stay healthy during this flu season, so we will continue to keep you informed as well as address any concerns related to the coronavirus. But, above all, we encourage all members of our WHC community to support and look out for each other.

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the coronavirus?

The 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is a new virus that causes respiratory illness in people and can spread from person to person. This virus was first identified during an investigation into an outbreak in Wuhan, China and has been detected in almost 70 locations internationally, including the United States.

What are the symptoms of the coronavirus?

Symptoms of the virus include fever, cough, and shortness of breath.

What are some steps I can take to prevent exposure?

The best way to limit the spread of viruses is through good hygiene, including covering your mouth with a tissue when coughing; covering your nose with a tissue when sneezing; washing your hands frequently; avoiding touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands; avoiding close contact with people who are sick; staying home if you are sick; and cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched spaces.

What should I do if I think I was exposed to the virus?

If you have traveled recently or have been in close contact with a person diagnosed with COVID-19 and are experiencing the symptoms referenced above, seek medical attention immediately. Before you visit a doctor’s office or emergency room, call ahead and let them know of your recent travel and symptoms. Wear a mask if you need to leave your home when you are sick.

What is Walnut Hill College doing to minimize the risk of the campus community contracting the coronavirus?

WHC is raising awareness across campus regarding proper hygiene, increasing access to alcohol-based hand sanitizers, and disinfecting common areas and residential learning facilities, as recommended by the CDC.

In addition to our usual daily cleaning throughout our campus, our maintenance team is taking extensive measures to disinfect all surfaces: door handles and knobs, bathroom fixtures and surfaces, stair railings, tabletops, and all other high-touch surfaces.

We’ve installed automatic hand soap dispensers in the bathrooms of all Residential Learning buildings, and we promote frequent handwashing among our student body, staff, and faculty. All staff and faculty have been instructed to notify our maintenance team if they feel there is an additional need to wipe down any surface with a disinfectant throughout the day.

What should I keep in mind as I plan for Spring Break?

As of March 13, 2020, Walnut Hill College has modified its Spring Break to take place from March 16 through March 20. The College is closely monitoring the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the World Health Organization (WHO), and the Pennsylvania Department of Health websites, which are important resources for updates and alerts related to COVID-19 and travel. Visit the CDC’s Travel Health Notices page for information on specific travel destinations. The U.S. Department of State also lists travel advisories.

Please review the information below for additional guidance.

  • Whether you plan to travel abroad or within the U.S., we encourage you to discuss your Spring Break itinerary with your families and loved ones. Be sure to share information about your travel providers and the contact details of your travel companions with someone close to you.
  • If you plan to travel abroad, check entry and exit requirements for the U.S. and your intended destination before your departure and return. Many countries have instituted restrictions and quarantines for travel that may directly affect you.
  • Be mindful that travel restrictions can change with little or no advance notice, and airlines may change or cancel flights in response.
  • Anyone returning from a country identified by the CDC as “affected” may be directed to self-quarantine for 14 days. As the CDC adds countries to the “affected” list, healthcare providers can apply the quarantine requirement without specific directives.
  • When Spring Break travelers who have been to affected countries return to the U.S., they will be encouraged to return to their residences for the 14-day self-quarantine.

Get Accurate Information From the Best Sources

As of March 13, 2020, Walnut Hill College continues to operate as normal and has no confirmed cases of COVID-19. The Health and Safety Team is monitoring the situation closely and will provide important updates to our community of students, staff, and faculty.

In addition to checking your email and Schoology regularly for updates from WHC, we urge you to look only at sources that are unbiased and truly legitimate, such as:

Contact Information and Alerts

We communicate important information about school closings, delays, and emergencies through our Campus Alert Hotline at 215-222-4200 ext. 3333.

If you have an emergency, the University of Pennsylvania Police Department is available 24/7 at 215-573-3333. Alternatively, dial 911 for the Philadelphia Police Department.

What to Do If You Feel Ill or Have Been Exposed

If you or someone you have been in contact with has been exposed to COVID-19, or if you start to feel symptoms outlined on this page, please alert the WHC Health and Safety Team ASAP at info@walnuthillcollege.edu, so that we can take the necessary precautions to protect the safety of our community.

According to the CDC, if you are in close contact with someone with COVID-19 and develop symptoms of COVID-19, call your healthcare provider and tell them about your exposure and symptoms. They will decide whether you need to be tested, but keep in mind that there is no treatment for COVID-19 and that people who are mildly ill are able to self-quarantine at home.