The health and safety of students, faculty and staff is of paramount importance and is MICA’s first Reopening Guiding Principle.

 This is a community effort, with every individual contributing to protecting oneself and others. This will be achieved through personal and collective responsibility and adhering to published guidelines and expected conduct. This section provides detailed information about health and safety measures for individuals and for the College.  

1. Screening, Testing, and Care

R5 stands for an interrelated set of 5 action strands that—thoughtfully integrated—can achieve distinctive goals and collective impact in guiding MICA’s successful navigation through COVID-19 challenges and opportunities to emerge as a stronger, more resilient, and more innovative institution and community

Symptom Monitoring

All MICA campus community members who return to campus at any point of the phased reopening plan must conduct symptom self-monitoring daily. Anyone entering a MICA building will be required to have their temperature taken by the temperature taking devices that will be present in all of MICA’s academic buildings and residence halls. All students will be provided with a digital thermometer at the beginning of the fall semester. All campus members will be provided with a mobile phone app for purposes of recording and tracking their temperatures and potential symptoms. You must be free of ANY symptoms potentially related to COVID-19 to be on campus.

Faculty and staff with symptoms should not come to campus and contact their health provider for advice on testing and treatment.

At this time, COVID-19 symptoms include one or more of the following:

  • Cough
  • Muscle pain
  • Fever/chills
  • Headache
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Sore throat
  • Fatigue
  • Repeated shaking with the chills
  • Runny nose or new sinus congestion
  • New loss of taste/smell
  • New GI symptoms

An employee who has symptoms should notify your supervisor immediately and leave campus or not report to work. The supervisor will provide instructions for off-campus quarantine measures. You are strongly encouraged to contact your healthcare provider and you may consult with Human Resources on telemedicine options available through MICA’s health insurance plans.

A student who has symptoms should notify the Student Health Center and follow instructions for on-campus or off-campus quarantine measures.

Testing

Testing will be available for all students with symptoms of COVID-19 who meet CDC testing criteria. MICA's infection control response includes isolation of students who test positive and quarantine for 14 days of those students who were in close contact with a positive student. Faculty and staff deemed close contacts of a confirmed COVID-19 positive case will be required to immediately self-quarantine off campus for 14 days and contact their primary care provider.

MICA is also studying other options for testing including waste water and saliva self-tests and is consulting with public health experts to determine the most appropriate strategy for our community. Decisions are expected very soon and this website will be updated at that time.

Contact Tracing

Any positive diagnostic test result will be communicated immediately to the state health authorities, who will then activate a contact tracing team to identify potential secondary cases to limit spread of infection. MICA has an early contract tracing team on its own campus and will supplement as needed, the state-administered tracing

Isolation and Quarantine

If a student tests positive, they will be isolated and provided a treatment plan by the Student Health Center. Protocols for isolation, quarantining of others exposed and contact tracing will be activated. If an employee tests positive, they will be required to stay off campus until they’re virus free.

Flu Vaccination

Aside from certain exceptions, all students, faculty and staff will be required to obtain flu vaccinations in the fall. Students who have not received one will not be allowed to register for the spring, unless they qualify for a medical exemption.

Training and Education on Public Health Measures

Educational and training videos and materials will be provided and all MICA community members will be encouraged to use them.

2. Reducing Density on Campus

R5 stands for an interrelated set of 5 action strands that—thoughtfully integrated—can achieve distinctive goals and collective impact in guiding MICA’s successful navigation through COVID-19 challenges and opportunities to emerge as a stronger, more resilient, and more innovative institution and community

Classes: In-Person, Online and Hybrid

Once the College begins its gradual resumption of on-campus activities, it will be important to prioritize work and instruction that requires physical presence on campus. For faculty and students, this means that certain classes will be identified as hybrid (partially online and partially in-person) or in-person and schedules will be set for access to instructional spaces and equipment on campus.

Telework and Alternative Work Schedules

Job responsibilities will be assessed and if work can be accomplished remotely, those employees will continue to work off-campus completely or partially. Alternating days or shifts and staggered schedules should be employed where possible.

In all cases, in order to reduce potential exposure and transmission, the campus community will be asked to restrict their presence on campus to only the time periods necessary to accomplish required on-campus activities. Individuals who are not MICA community members will only be allowed on campus under very limited circumstances. For further information and specific details, please see Appendix X.

Physical Distancing

Physical distancing, defined as 6 feet, will be required at all times on campus. Capacities for all spaces on campus will be measured and identified. Activities taking place within campus spaces will be managed and scheduled in accordance with these capacities, including class times and room assignments. This will mean changes in how classrooms, offices, common areas, housing, dining facilities, the MICA store, shuttles and other spaces will function.

For those staff on campus, virtual meetings will be encouraged in place of in-person and especially, if outside contractors are involved. If they occur in person, they will be limited to ten participants with strict physical distancing and masking required.

Number of chairs at conference tables will be reduced to provide for six feet of social distancing space between meeting attendees.

Elevators, lobbies, waiting areas, etc. will be marked and signage provided to denote capacity and social distance.

3. Personal Protection

R5 stands for an interrelated set of 5 action strands that—thoughtfully integrated—can achieve distinctive goals and collective impact in guiding MICA’s successful navigation through COVID-19 challenges and opportunities to emerge as a stronger, more resilient, and more innovative institution and community

Face Coverings

Face masks or coverings will be mandatory on campus except in very limited circumstances. Everyone at MICA will be required to wear a face covering inside buildings as well as outside when on MICA’s campus, including residence halls, except when inside an apartment. MICA will provide two reusable, cloth face masks to all faculty, staff and students.

It is the responsibility of every campus community member to wear a face covering at all times when on campus. Access to classrooms and other campus spaces will not be allowed unless a face covering is worn. Physical distancing should still be maintained while wearing face coverings. The only exceptions are when someone is alone in an office with the door closed, or eating or drinking.

Person Protection Equipment (PPE)

Certain activities on campus will require more formal personal protective equipment, such as N95 masks, for facilities work, access to equipment in Fabrication shops, etc. Those areas already have special safety protocols in place and will continue to enforce those rules.

PPE may also be needed to prevent certain exposures. While correctly using PPE can help prevent some exposures, it should not take the place of other prevention strategies.

Examples of PPE include: gloves, goggles, face shields, and respiratory protection, when appropriate.

  • All types of PPE must be:
  • Selected based upon the hazard to the worker.
  • Properly fitted and periodically refitted, as applicable (e.g., respirators).
  • Consistently and properly worn when required.
  • Regularly inspected, maintained, and replaced, as necessary.
  • Properly removed, cleaned, and stored or disposed of, as applicable, to avoid contamination of self, others, or the environment.

Hand Hygiene and Personal Respiratory Practices

Frequent washing of hands with soap and use of hand sanitizer will be strongly encouraged. Hand sanitizing stations will be located at all entrances and high-traffic areas in all MICA buildings.

All students will be provided with individual bottles of hand sanitizer. Faculty and staff are encouraged to bring personal bottles of hand sanitizer when on campus, and bottles for community use will be placed in multiple locations in every building. Use of gloves is discouraged except where needed for protective purposes for certain jobs, tasks or studio work.

Plexiglas barriers are being installed in highly visited areas and check-in points across campus. Everyone is expected to always cover their mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing, throw tissues in trash and wash hands immediately after, even when working in a closed-door space alone without a mask.

4. Facilities

R5 stands for an interrelated set of 5 action strands that—thoughtfully integrated—can achieve distinctive goals and collective impact in guiding MICA’s successful navigation through COVID-19 challenges and opportunities to emerge as a stronger, more resilient, and more innovative institution and community

Enhanced Cleaning and Disinfecting

Facilities Management will implement enhanced cleaning and sanitizing protocol that is consistent with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidance for higher education institutions. It will leverage the use of EPA N-List antimicrobial products for use against SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19), additional cleaning effort and partnership with the MICA community. Facilities Management’s focus shall be on increased high touch area cleaning and sanitizing frequency, clearly communicating responsibility for cleaning and sanitizing personal areas and monitoring and adjusting to conditions as they change.

Areas that shall be cleaned, disinfected and sanitized by Facilities Management shall include public areas, office corridors, conference rooms (public), classrooms, lobbies, kitchenettes (not including appliance interiors, utensils and dishes). Restrooms, stairs, railings, elevators and door handles shall be cleaned daily. Other areas such as studio lab equipment, office interiors (furniture, display boards) and personal items (computers, screens, phones) shall be the responsibility of the individual to clean, disinfect and sanitize with MICA provided sanitizing wipes.

Cleaning Protocol Details

Specific aspects of the enhanced cleaning protocol shall include:

  • Doubling the quantity of Building Services staff on the 1st shift in the Main Building, Meyerhoff, Bunting, Lazarus Center/1801, Fox, Brown, Dolphin and Station Building to increase cleaning, disinfecting and sanitizing in high touch areas. Cleaning, disinfecting and sanitizing shall continue on the 2nd shift as previously completed.
  • Each weekend we will have four (4) Building Services staff members working on the 1stshift to clean, disinfect and sanitize the campus buildings.
  • The primary sanitizing and disinfectant efforts shall occur through the application of two main products: 1) Microban 24 Hour applied daily to high touch areas and 2) Klean Green a 36-hour sanitizing disinfectant that will be applied three times each week.
  • Disinfectant wipes shall be provided to the MICA community for cleaning, disinfecting and sanitizing of personal spaces and materials such as residence hall apartments, offices and personal equipment as well as studio lab equipment.
  • Staff, faculty and students will be strongly encouraged to frequently clean their own workspaces high touch areas. Additionally, additional cleaning measures will be employed in campus facilities following known/suspected exposure to Covid-19.

Miscellaneous

Ventilation and HVAC

Increased air exchange ventilation with high efficiency air filters will be implemented.

Reducing Touchpoints

Across campus, touchpoints are being reduced to provide hands-free entry ways, faucets, towel dispensers

5. General Campus Protocols

R5 stands for an interrelated set of 5 action strands that—thoughtfully integrated—can achieve distinctive goals and collective impact in guiding MICA’s successful navigation through COVID-19 challenges and opportunities to emerge as a stronger, more resilient, and more innovative institution and community

Contractors and Deliveries

  • No Face to Face meetings outside of the job site.
  • Must wear Face coverings when indoors, gloves as needed and maintain social distancing.
  • Campus Safety will issue Universal ID’s to the vendor’s reporting department (ie. Facilities Management) upon request for purposes of vendor access and contact tracing for those vendors who do not have a personal ID.
  • Must comply with all Federal, State and Local guidelines as well as MICA policies.
  • Must inform their reporting department of time and location of visit. The reporting department will coordinate the site visit and inform Campus Safety.
  • Vendors must wipe-down/sanitize any areas that they have worked in or equipment on which they have worked.

Pets

Except for certified emotional support animals qualifying under ADA, MICA’s pet policy is being amended and they will not be allowed on campus for the coming year.

Smoking and Vaping

Smoking and vaping put individuals at higher risk of contracting COVID-19 and developing a serious illness if they do contract it. A revised policy for this coming year is being developed and will be announced soon. There are resources and programs at mdquit.org for those wanting support and assistance to stop smoking or vaping.

Accountability and Compliance

These guidelines are being put in place to minimize the risk of spreading COVID-19 and not complying with them could endanger all community members. Failure to observe the guidelines places our community at risk for spreading the virus and endangering the health of students, staff, and faculty. Every member of our community will be required to sign a social contract committing to adhering to MICA’s public health measures and is empowered to request compliance by others with these guidelines.

Student Health Ambassadors will be hired to help monitor and encourage compliance. If you encounter noncompliance with these guidelines, you may notify Campus Safety’s 24-hour hotline 410-225-2245. Repeated noncompliance with current guidelines may result in a loss of access to campus facilities and/or disciplinary action.

Contingency Planning

In case of an outbreak of confirmed cases in the MICA community:

MICA will facilitate increased testing, contact tracing and isolation of those affected, and quarantine for those exposed.

Student Health Services will test all asymptomatic people who were exposed to someone with a positive test.

Faculty and staff will be encouraged to consult with their health care providers for testing and contract tracing.

There may be a need to impose new restrictions on a temporary basis which could include fewer gatherings, limiting student activities and/or moving to a higher level of remote learning. The decision to shift the entire campus to remote learning will be based on the following factors:

  • The outbreak is so great that MICA and its Student Health Care Provider cannot meet the necessary levels of PPE, testing, tracing and/or treatment.
  • MICA and the Baltimore Department of Health determine there’s a public health risk on or near campus, that cannot be adequately contained.
  • An executive order is issued by the Mayor of Baltimore or the Maryland Governor.