January 12, 2021
Happy New Year! The spring semester at Gonzaga University is nearly upon us, and we are looking forward to having students back on campus very soon. I am writing to share some important information about your return to campus. Please note that Spring 2021 semester will likely look very much like Fall 2020 semester in terms of our requirements and guidelines for public health and the prevention of COVID-19 infection. Our safety precautions continue to be intended to protect the health of our campus and Spokane communities, and we remain dedicated to providing to an exceptional student experience, in and out of the classroom.
Here are some things you need to know ahead of the start of spring semester:
- Reduce and minimize contact with those outside your immediate family, or those with whom you have been staying, for the final 7-10 days before arriving on campus. This lowers the risk of exposure to someone who may unknowingly be shedding the virus.
- You should begin using the ZagCheck App daily. If you need assistance accessing the App, go to the ZagOn website and look for the link to the Self-Screening App
- Before returning to Spokane, get a COVID-19 test in the 72 hours prior to your planned departure and return to campus only if that test is negative. If the test comes back positive, we ask that you remain at home and contact our COVID-19 Hotline at 509-313-7070 (ext.1) for support, including guidance on beginning your studies remotely.
- Prior to January 16, free drive-up testing is available at the Spokane Arena Centralized Location (720 W. Mallon Ave, Spokane, WA 99201), Monday - Friday from 9 am to 5 pm.
See Free Testing at Spokane Arena below for more information
- Student surveillance testing will begin January 20. You will be notified by email each week if you are selected for testing.
Following are answers to your questions regarding check-in, health screening and testing, the COVID-19 vaccine, and how to keep yourself and others safe:
Screening and Testing
Free Testing at Spokane Arena
Now through Saturday, Jan. 16, free drive-up testing is available at the Spokane Arena Centralized Location (720 W. Mallon Ave), Monday - Friday from 9 am to 5 pm. Free testing will be available once again, starting on Tuesday, Jan. 19.
If you are arriving prior to January 16, free drive-up testing is available at the Spokane Arena Centralized Location (720 W. Mallon Ave, Spokane, WA 99201), Monday - Friday from 9 am to 5 pm. Completing an online appointment request is required before arrival.
Visit https://chas.org/spokane-arena-testing for more information.
On Campus Graduate Students
You are invited to participate in a health screening (details below) and testing that is being offered January 17-19 from 8 am to 8 pm in the Hemmingson Ballroom. If your screening shows COVID-19 symptoms or an exposure, you will be tested at our testing site on 729 E. Boone Avenue. Walk-in testing will occur in the Hemmingson Center Ballroom.
While closed January 16-18, free testing is also available at the Spokane Arena Centralized Location (720 W. Mallon Ave, Spokane, WA 99201) beginning again on January 19.
Lastly, as a reminder, please use the ZagCheck app to report symptoms and exposures this semester.
About the Health Screening for Students
The screening will be conducted by Gonzaga’s contact tracers, and it will include a temperature check and a self-attestation using the ZagCheck app.
- Normal (less than 100.4 degrees) – you will proceed to ZagCheck screening
- Fever (100.4 degrees or greater) – you will immediately be sent to test at 729 E. Boone Ave.
- ZagCheck (please be prepared to share your self-screen result)
- At Home Test Result Check
- If you have not completed a test prior to returning to GU and you have a green ZagCheck (no symptoms or known exposures), you will be referred to test in the Hemmingson Center Ballroom. You will then be asked to shelter at your place of residence (see below) until you have received your test result.
- If you have not completed a test prior to returning to GU and you have a red ZagCheck (symptomatic or a known exposure), you will immediately be sent to test at 729 E. Boone Ave. You will then enter quarantine or isolation as instructed.
What Happens After I am Tested?
After testing between January 16-19, you will be asked to shelter in their place of residence until they receive their test results. While sheltering, you should:
- Monitor for symptoms. Call the COVID-19 Hotline (509) 313-7070 (ext. 1) if symptoms develop.
- Not socialize or interact with anyone outside of your household unit (i.e., room, apartment, suite, etc.).
- Not attend in person events, classes, meetings, etc.
- Utilize take out options for on campus dining and eat at your place of residence.
- Continue wearing your face covering, practicing proper social distancing, and hand washing.
What Happens if I test Positive?
If you are tested in the Hemmingson Center Ballroom or at 729 E. Boone Ave, and test positive, you will be contacted by a member of Gonzaga’s contact tracing team or by a Health and Counseling Services staff member. Contact tracers will assess any additional campus exposures, and provide a timeline for returning to campus. If you are experiencing COVID-19 related symptoms you may contact Health and Counseling Services starting January 19th at 8:00am at (509) 313-4066. For other healthcare needs, including COVID-19 related concerns, prior to January 19th please contact your local healthcare provider or an urgent care center. If you have a medical emergency, please call 911.
Are COVID-19 Vaccines Available?
At this time, we do not have detailed information from the State of Washington or Spokane Regional Health District about vaccinations on campus. Information will be shared as it becomes available.
How Can I Best Protect Myself and Others?
A successful semester requires that all community members assist with prevention and self-monitoring behaviors. Prevention strategies are simple and include the following:
- Wash your hands frequently using plenty of soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
- If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.
- Wear face coverings any time you are out of your private space. Handle your face coverings carefully and wash hands after removing the face covering you just used.
- Use a clean face covering every day.
- Stay 6 feet away from people (social distancing) even with a mask on.
- Avoid contact with those who are sick, and stay home if you are sick.
- Always cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, or use the inside of your elbow and do not spit.
- Disinfect common spaces you use before and after use. This includes tables, desks in classrooms and other community-shared furniture or equipment.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touch surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets and sinks.
I hope that you have enjoyed a safe, happy and healthy winter break. Blessings to all and prayers for a successful spring semester. ZagUp and ZagOn!
Vice Provost for Student Affairs