Covid-19 (Coronavirus) Information

LCCC is committed to keeping the campus and the community informed about our response to Covid-19 (Coronavirus). You can find updates and resources for students, employees and the community below.

LCCC Emergency CARES Grant
LCCC Coronavirus Services for Students
LCCC Coronavirus Services for ACC Students
LCCC Coronavirus Student FAQ
LCCC Coronavirus Employee FAQ

Update May 29, 2020

Return to Business Phase 1 plans

CHEYENNE, WYO. – Laramie County Community College has set forth a new plan to establish procedures and standards for operations in light of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

Phase One of the LCCC Return to Business Plan takes effect June 1 and continues through Aug. 14. The document provides guidance for employees, students, and visitors, and it addresses general guidance for the campus, cleaning and hygiene, social distancing, and health screening and reporting.

Further, it provides specific guidance for course offerings, residence hall access, campus events and public events held on campus, and other guidance necessary to provide the most appropriate functionality for the college.

The complete document is available to view at lccc.wy.edu/COVID. Students, employees, and the community are encouraged to review the detailed plan.

Key points include:

  • All courses for the summer 2020 semester will be offered in a virtual format
  • The vast majority of the college’s physical operations will remain closed; employees who are able to work from home will continue to do so
  • All employees, students, and visitors shall wear a face covering while on campus, especially when social distancing is not possible
  • Gatherings of groups of 25 or fewer are permitted in accordance with appropriate guidelines; larger gatherings may be permitted with appropriate approval
  • Areas wishing to reopen on a temporary or permanent basis must request formal approval to do so
  • Updates and information will continue to be available at lccc.wy.edu/COVID

According to the document, the college’s objective is to establish a structure of protocols that will allow LCCC to return to a state where people can appropriately engage to effectively carry out programs, services and activities necessary to reach the LCCC mission.

The document was compiled by a cross-section of key personnel across LCCC, including members of the Board of Trustees.

Phase Two is scheduled to begin Aug. 15, and Phase Three will launch Jan. 1, 2021.

Update May 15, 2020

Dear LCCC Employees….

It appears to be a week full of campus updates, information, and activities. As a follow-up to my message earlier this week, I wanted to take the opportunity to provide some additional, more detailed information about other decisions that will impact our employees.

Summer Hours: As I look outside and see signs of summer approaching, I am pleased to announce summer hours are returning to LCCC. Our regular business hours, beginning May 18 will be 7:30 a.m. – 4 p.m., with a 30 minute lunch. I know that working from home presents some unique challenges and opportunities, so please have a conversation with your supervisor to discuss what schedule will allow you to continue being successful in your work while serving our primary stakeholders in the highest-quality manner possible.    

Faculty: I want to thank you all for your work to transition to virtual learning in the middle of the semester while still providing our students with outstanding educational experiences. I know this has been a challenge at times and your ability to overcome is appreciated. As you are aware, May 16 is a scheduled duty-day for faculty. As a result of moving our Commencement celebration online, you will not be asked to report/work tomorrow (May 16). You will be compensated as you normally would for this day.

We encourage you to watch our virtual celebration on May 20, on our commencement website and consider reaching out to your graduating students with a message of congratulations.

Please note, in the event LCCC does decide to hold a December Commencement, you will be asked to participate in that event, even though it may not be a typical duty day for the fall semester.  We will reach out with more details about your participation in the ceremony activities as plans develop.  Thanks for your flexibility.  

Staff: Thank you to all our professional, classified and managerial staff that have navigated moving our operations to a remote working environment. I can honestly, say I don’t think we have missed a step. Your work to continue engaging and supporting our students, community members and fellow employees has been nothing short of impressive.

One of my favorite celebrations at the end of each school year is our annual picnic. Unfortunately, this year it just doesn’t seem prudent that we gather, and so the picnic scheduled for June 12 has been cancelled. In appreciation for all of your hard work and challenges during this time, we do still want you to please take the afternoon of June 12 off.  Enjoy some time away from your computer and work (hint, no email, no phone calls, and no Zoom!). I will join you and do the same…  I promise, I really will.

Full-time Employees: I would ask that you all continue to do the great work that you are currently doing in your remote work setting. While I know this is not always easy, I appreciate the work that is being completed and hope that as we enter the summer months, you will take some time to enjoy the beautiful weather that we have in Wyoming. We understand that our extension of the virtual work environment through the end of May might result in you needing to visit campus to gather some additional supplies or documents. If this is the case, we ask that you communicate with your Cabinet representative prior to visiting campus.

Part-time Employees: Thank you for your dedication to the work you do at LCCC, the time and expertise that you bring to your positions is appreciated. For many of you, as we complete the semester this is the end of your normally planned employment at LCCC.  We want to thank you for helping us through these unprecedented times. For those of you who have ongoing work at LCCC, we are grateful to have you remain part of our team into the summer.

  • For part-time employees who will be continuing their employment as planned, beginning May 16, you will begin using Time Clock again to clock in/out and to record your hours.  We will no longer be using the average hours worked model. Please expect to receive additional information from your Supervisor on how these changes will impact you directly.
  • For those part-time employees whose work with the College is ending, our Physical Plant staff is ready to assist you in returning your LCCC property. Please visit the Physical Plant between 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. to turn in your keys, PCard, ID and any technology equipment.
  • I realize that there may be some questions about Part-time employees who would normally be working for us into the summer, but perhaps cannot completely conduct their work because of our virtual operations.  Please speak with your supervisor.  Supervisors, additional guidance will be coming from Human Resources, and I encourage you to reach out to them for assistance in these unique circumstances. 

My apologies for such a long message, but I wanted to ensure I was as detailed as possible.  While I am thankful for all you have done, and also still excited for the end of the semester, it is bittersweet that we cannot be together under more normal circumstances.  You have all given so much to LCCC and our students, and I can’t say thank you enough for the work that you do.

Continue the great work and please contact me or your Cabinet representative with any additional questions.

Best, 

Dr. Joe Schaffer
LCCC President

Update May 14, 2020

Our Virtual Commencement Celebration will be held on Wednesday, May 20 beginning at noon.

LCCC will continue to work in a virtual format with suspended physical operations through May 31.

Dear Campus Community…

It is hard to believe that we are in the middle of our ninth week of providing services and operating in a “virtual” format. Even more amazing is that we are quickly approaching the end of our semester and preparing to celebrate yet another outstanding and very resilient class of Golden Eagle alumni. Please join me in celebrating these students as we present our first-ever Virtual Commencement Celebration on Wednesday, May 20 beginning at noon on our commencement website.

I want to thank you all for your determination to finish the semester strong, your flexibility and innovative teaching practices and mostly for your patience. I understand that this time has been and continues to be filled with uncertainty and yet, you all have shown outstanding devotion to your responsibilities at LCCC. As we continue to evaluate how to safely return our employees and students to campus, I understand that many of you are asking the question of, what is next?

Our Return to Business (R2B) team is working to provide this guidance and will be presenting a plan to President’s Cabinet by the end of next week. Due to these plans still being developed and our promise to do our best to keep you all safe, LCCC will continue to work in a virtual format with suspended physical operations through May 31. Essentially, we are extending our current remote working plan for another two weeks.  Here shortly I will be sending another communication to campus with some more detailed employee updates.  Stay tuned for that.

We understand that there may need to be exceptions to this closure.  As we have in the past, we ask that any exceptions be submitted to your supervisor/respective Cabinet member for review. Any exceptions will be required to also align with the current health orders provided by both the Wyoming Department of Health and the Cheyenne-Laramie County Health Department. We will continually assess the situation and adjust as necessary.

We understand that extending our virtual operations will impact many areas of all of our LCCC campuses. With the extension of our virtual work environment, we are also extending the closure of our facilities for community and campus events/activities, this includes, but is not limited to: the Children’s Discovery Center, RAC, Dining Facilities, Boys and Girls Club, Wyoming Highway Patrol, LCCC Outreach and Workforce Development and UW Extension.

As we look to begin “re-opening” our campus, Phase 1 of the R2B plan will be addressing operations going forward from June 1. I will continue to provide updates to campus via email, through my town hall meetings and updates will be posted on the LCCC Covid-19 webpage. We will also provide necessary information to our local media outlets to keep our community partners informed.

Thank you all for your commitment to LCCC and please contact me or your Cabinet representative if you have any questions.

Be Safe, Be Strong, There are better days ahead.

Best,

Dr. Joe Schaffer
LCCC President

Update Apr. 23, 2020

Message to students from the Wyoming community college presidents.

Dear Students, Finish Strong!

With the coronavirus outbreak, we have all had to adapt to new ways of doing things. The majority of you are adjusting to online or remote learning from your homes, faculty are transitioning to virtual classrooms from their homes, and staff are supporting you through the use of technology from their homes. Even though our physical campuses may be closed, we are open for business and focused on helping you finish this semester.

The uncertainties and challenges related to COVID-19 may have us feeling anxious and isolated. We understand the temptation for you to simply not finish the semester, perhaps thinking you will return when things get back to “normal.” We encourage you to think about it differently.

This is the perfect time to dig back into your studies and focus like never before, using new tools in new and exciting ways. Your priorities may have changed, and you are likely facing different pressures, but the time you are afforded now is a gift when it comes to the ability to concentrate on your studies. You can set a positive example for others by committing to your studies and experiencing success.

You are over half-way through the semester already, and are well down the path to finishing your degree or credential. Stay on track. Don’t let the challenges caused by the coronavirus derail you; instead, let them motivate you. Your higher education is more important today than ever.

Having a college degree matters, especially in times like these. Individuals with higher levels of education have higher earning capacity throughout their lifetime and are less likely to be unemployed. Your degree will not only set you up for future opportunities, it will help you weather times of uncertainty like these we are experiencing today.

Furthermore, staying on track to complete this semester and ultimately finishing your degree or credential is essential to the recovery for our entire State. Having an educated workforce will be key to Wyoming weathering this storm, and more importantly, to our ability to thrive afterward.

We implore you to continue to invest in your future. Your Wyoming Community Colleges have been working hard to ensure you have the support and resources you need. We are here for you. We need you to engage and let us know if you are in need. We believe that all of our students can be successful in their classes, even while juggling personal demands and dealing with the challenges brought on by these uncertain times.

Things may feel very different right now, but your faculty members and their commitment to you are the same. The staff ready to help you are the same people that have always cared about your success.

We know you have the courage and resilience to do this. We have seen it in you on our campuses. We know you can not only finish this semester, but finish strong.

You’ve got this!

Dr. Darren Divine, President
Casper College

Dr. Brad Tyndall, President
Central Wyoming College

Dr. Lesley Travers, President
Eastern Wyoming College

Dr. Joe Schaffer, President
Laramie County Community College

Dr. Walter Tribley, President
Northern Wyoming Community College District

Dr. Stefani Hicswa, President
Northwest College

Dr. Kimberly Dale, President
Western Wyoming Community College

Update Apr. 21, 2020

LCCC Emergency CARES Grant information

Laramie County Community College students facing financial hardship because of the Coronavirus pandemic can now apply for emergency financial aid grants to help their situation.

Because of significant funding through the recently passed CARES (Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security) Act, LCCC will be able to distribute approximately $750,000 in emergency financial aid grants to the college’s students impacted by COVID-19. These expenses may include food, housing, course materials, technology, health care, child care, and other basic needs.  

Any student that is currently enrolled or was enrolled in an LCCC credit course for the spring 2020 semester on or after March 13 is eligible to apply for the funds; no limitations are in place based on number of hours enrolled or the students’ degree-seeking/non-degree-seeking status. The brief application to apply for support and additional information about the grant can be found at lccc.wy.edu/COVID.

The LCCC Office of Financial Aid & Scholarships will review the applications and award funding. There is currently no application deadline, but grants must be distributed by the college within one year of receiving the funds.     

“Our students are of utmost concern to us,” said LCCC's Director of Financial Aid Brandi Payne Cervera. “We hope this funding will help minimize the immense financial impact many of our students are experiencing during this crisis.   Our goal is to distribute the emergency grants as quickly as possible to our students with the greatest needs"

LCCC will also receive additional funding from the CARES Act for institutional use. Guidance and directions for those funds will come from the U.S. Department of Education later this month.

The college named the student portion of this money the LCCC Emergency CARES Grant.

In a press release from the Department of Education, Secretary Betsy DeVos said: "What’s best for students is at the center of every decision we make. That’s why we prioritized getting funding out the door quickly to college students who need it most. We don’t want unmet financial needs due to the coronavirus to derail their learning."

For those with additional questions, contact Payne Cervera at bcerveraFREELARAMIE.

Update Apr. 6, 2020

LCCC’s May 2020 commencement ceremony will not be held as planned. Survey for students to explore other options.

Dear LCCC Students:

As you know, the situation with COVID-19 is changing so many aspects of your college experience. To begin, we have decided that LCCC will remain a “virtual” campus with suspended physical operations until May 15.

Unfortunately, it also means we had to make the incredibly difficult decision to not hold LCCC’s May 2020 commencement ceremony as planned. This was not an action we took lightly or easily.

That said, we – and by that I mean the entire LCCC community – want to celebrate your tremendous achievement. Whether you earned a degree or a certificate, you worked hard and deserve an opportunity to bask in that success.

Below is a link to a short survey with potential options for you to consider. For the first time in LCCC’s history, we are exploring the idea of December commencement ceremony, if enough of you are interested in such an experience. Another option is to create an online video tribute to all of you, likely available in mid-May; doing so would require a small effort on your part to contribute a photo and additional details that could be shared. We’re also aware that, for some of you, neither choice works. That’s a fair choice for you to have, and we just ask you to let us know that as well.

No matter what the outcome of the survey provides, we want you to know how incredibly proud we are of all of you. You are dealing with a situation that no other graduation class on our campus has experienced, and you’re facing this challenge with strength and determination. It’s an honor to have each of you as part of the LCCC Class of 2020.

Again, please take a moment to complete this survey for graduation by Friday, April 17. We will reach out to you again once we’ve compiled the results and plan for the next steps to honor your achievement.

Stay strong, stay safe, stay healthy. There are better days ahead.

Best,

Dr. Joe Schaffer
LCCC President

Update Apr. 3, 2020

Dear Campus Community:

It is difficult to believe that we have already spent more than two weeks operating in a “virtual” form.  Yet the situation with COVID-19 is ever-changing and evolving on what seems to be a daily basis.  Without being cliché, it appears things will continue to get worse, before it gets better.   Current estimates suggest the peak of the situation will hit Wyoming just less than a month from now, or early May.  In response, today we learned that the Governor extended his executive orders that have closed many institutions, including LCCC, as well other restrictions through April 30th.  I anticipate this may go even beyond that date.  He also initiated an order for the mandatory quarantine of individuals traveling into Wyoming or returning to the stateView the Governor's  Directive for individuals to Self-Quarantine.

Thus, as I announced today during our second Virtual Town Hall, LCCC will remain a “virtual” campus with suspended physical operations until the end of the semester, or May 15th.  The previous guidance associated with the March 16th update to campus and our shift to remote working and no physical operations on campus remain in effect for this time.  We will continually assess the situation and make adjustments as necessary.

Unfortunately, this also means we had to make the incredibly difficult decision to not hold LCCC’s May 2020 commencement ceremony as planned. This was not an action we took lightly or easily.  Again, we will not be holding graduation activities on May 16th.  

That said, we – and by that I mean the entire LCCC community – want to celebrate the tremendous achievement of these students. All of those that earned a degree or a certificate deserve an opportunity to bask in their success.  We will ask these students to help us determine a path forward. For the first time in LCCC’s history, we are exploring the idea of a December commencement ceremony and/or a virtual tribute which would be available in mid-May. We are aware that for some of these students, neither option is viable for them.

As faculty and staff of LCCC, it’s paramount to ensure that these students know how incredibly proud we are of them. They are dealing with a situation that no other graduating class on our campus has experienced, and they are facing this challenge with strength and determination. I’m sure I speak for all of you when I say that it’s an honor to have them represent the LCCC Class of 2020.

Stay strong, stay safe, stay healthy. There are better days ahead.

Best,

Dr. Joe Schaffer
LCCC President

Update Apr. 1, 2020

We know you’re getting inundated with messages related to the COVID-19 virus; and the impacts on you and your loved ones makes for a tough time of uncertainty and unease.

We know that when things are beyond our control it can sometimes seem impossible.  We are all feeling it too.  It is heartening to see people from across the LCCC campus working diligently to make this situation as manageable as possible. 

We understand this situation has forced you to do things differently and we are impressed with your ability to see what is possible in the face of the challenge.  We want every employee to know that we value you and we are committed to support you, as best we can, during these difficult times.  When the time is right, we will also be committed to support you in our return to normal, whatever that may be

We thank each of you for your efforts, your tenacity, and your strength. You represent the best of the Golden Eagles.

Board Chairman Jess Ketcham

Board Vice Chairman Wendy Soto

Board Secretary Bob Salazar

Board Treasurer Don Erickson

Trustee Carol Merrell

Trustee Brenda Lyttle

Trustee Janine Thompson 

Update Mar. 20, 2020

As announced by President Schaffer, LCCC will be extending Spring Break for all students and implementing a primarily online learning environment. Further, all LCCC campuses are now closed. Students need to prepare to become virtual learners beginning Wednesday April 1.

How?

  • Help us understand your technology needs or limitations by completing this online Technology Needs Survey.
  • Use the College's COVID-19 page for access to student resources.
  • Self-enroll in the Online Introduction to Canvas course to learn more about Canvas.
  • Gather your course materials in one place; prepare a quiet space where you can continue your studies when classes begin again on April 1.
  • Check your Canvas Inbox for messages from your instructors; monitor this inbox regularly.
  • Check your LCCC email account regularly.
  • Familiarize yourself with the Canvas Guides in the Help menu.

Identify your access to 24/7 Canvas support. Note that you can connect to support via phone or chat at any time. These services are available in the Help menu. 

Update Mar. 19, 2020

Message to faculty, members of the Academic Leadership Team and members of President's Cabinet.

This message is being shared with all faculty, members of the Academic Leadership Team and members of President’s Cabinet.

Thanks to each of you who’ve expressed concern, offered to lend a hand, and even quietly allowed ALT to plan for the week ahead and our collective focus on our students and their successful completion of this very disrupted semester. Please note the brief details outlined below as you continue to consider the weeks ahead:

  • We’ve grounded our actions at the College in minimizing the chance of exposure to and the transmission of COVID-19 at LCCC and mitigating the impacts of the virus on College operations. These priorities continue to guide our decisions as we consider local developments on a daily basis.
  • We’ve transitioned many of our services to virtual delivery, and while that has not been without hiccups, our students are receiving individual attention at each turn. Most of our student-focused services are up and running.
  • Access to campus is restricted and needs to be authorized for all personnel; please contact me to address that. Thank you Jason, Steve, Sarah, Joe, Ami, Linda, and Danny for respecting the importance of these protocols and adhering to them.
  • We anticipate a virtual return Monday of all faculty and a college-wide focus on transitioning instruction in all corners to a virtual environment. The innovation so many of you have already developed to meet our students’ needs is very exciting. I look forward to watching that unfold!

A number of you have asked about how to get started:

  • Explore the Canvas course, The Exchange.
    • The CET personnel have collaborated with a number of colleagues, vendors, and sister institutions to develop Canvas modules to assist in the transition to online.
    • HELP resources are identified, and options to get one-to-one assistance are embedded.
  • Outline plans for each of your classes via the Syllabus Supplement. The Supplement form will be filed with the School Dean for each class. A completed example is attached to this message.
  • Explore the College’s COVID-19 resource page and familiarize yourself with the Student Resources. Our students will turn to you for direction and help through this peculiar time; understanding the resources available to them will make those conversations easier.
  • Complete the Technology Needs survey. This will guide the distribution of our technology resources and assure that you have what you need and our students do as well.

I recognize that the details of our operations have changed considerably since your Spring Break began and that this creates challenges beyond those we have known before. Additional details about the remains of the semester will be shared at school meetings on Monday. Remember that we are a large and resilient community, and our resolve in serving students comes through in the most challenging of times. I have seen that daily and know that it will be the norm as we navigate these unfamiliar times. Remember that Friday is a scheduled holiday; I’ve reminded members of ALT that it is a day for them to turn their eyes to family and friends, and to  recharge their well-tested batteries. I hope you will take the day to do the same.

We’ve a road ahead of us; I couldn’t be prouder to walk beside you in navigating it.

Take Care,

Kari Brown-Herbst
Interim, Vice President Academic Affairs

Update Mar. 18, 2020

Dear LCCC Residence Hall Students,

Our world is a bit crazy right now as we deal with the Coronavirus (COVID-19) concern. We are actively monitoring updates from the CDC, state and county officials to help us manage this rapidly evolving situation.  LCCC is committed to the health and well-being of our students and employees.  It is with that in mind that we are directing all students who reside in the LCCC Residence Hall to move out by March 31st, 2020. Please keep reading, there is more information below to help with this transition.

All Residential students should make plans to move out of the Residence Halls by Tuesday, March 31st, 2020.

Please follow the set of instructions below that best fits your current situation.

1. I am currently on campus or can return to campus to move out by March 31st.

Students will need to pack and remove all of your belongings from your room and the common area.  We recommend you bring your own boxes, storage, and cleaning supplies.  The Residence Halls will have a limited number of carts available for checkout.  Staff will not be able to disinfect after each use, therefore please use caution.

2. I am currently on campus, or plan to return to campus, but I am unable to move out by March 31st.

If you are unable to move out of the Residence Halls by March 31, 2020, you will need to apply for an exception. Please do so by filling out the “Intent to remain in housing” application in the Student Housing app in myLCCC.  Applications are due no later than March 23, 2020 at 5pm.

Note: Exceptions will be granted on a case-by-case basis and are not guaranteed.

3. I am not able to return home or have other extenuating circumstances.

We recognize that for some of our students who are not able to return home or have a place to go (i.e., international students, student who are homeless, student who are foster youth, or have other unique situations, etc.) that the LCCC Residence Hall is your home.  The Residence Hall will grant exceptions on a case-by-case basis to students who believe they must remain in the Residence Hall.  It is important to note that by staying in the Residence Hall our expectation is that you practice social distancing and no visitors are permitted.  Limited Services will be available.  LCCC staff will be working remotely. All services that can be provided via phone, email, or zoom meeting will be completed in that manner. Students will still have access to internet and other standard services in the halls.  Campus buildings will be closed and will not be accessible.

In order to apply for an exception you must fill out the form “Intent to remain in housing” on the Student Housing App on myLCCC.  Please fill out this form if you are applying to stay in the Residence Halls past March 31st, 2020. Exceptions will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis and no exception is guaranteed. You will be contacted by Diana Wilson regarding your exception status within three (3) business days of submitting the form. Applications are due no later than 5:00 pm on March 23, 2020.  Remaining in the residence halls will most likely require you to move to a new location in order to offer social distancing of bathrooms and allow custodial staff to clean and sanitize our residence halls. Information about meals, prorating of fees, and other information will be provided to students approved to stay in the residence hall.

CHECKOUT INSTRUCTIONS

  1. Remove all items from room and common area.  Your room was provided a shower curtain and trash can, please leave those in the room.
  2. Clean all room surfaces, wipe out drawers, take out trash.
  3. Get a check out envelope from the front desk.  Place keys in the envelope, seal, and fill out information, sign.  Place envelope in the “outgoing letters” slot by the mailboxes.

ROOM & MEAL CHARGES

Prorated housing and meal plans will be credited to student accounts by May 1, 2020 and will pay any outstanding balances/fees. If you are anticipating a refund, please set-up direct deposit through myLCCC under Self-Service.

CARTS & CLEANING SUPPLIES

The Residence Halls will have a limited number of carts available for check-out, but staff will not be available to disinfect after each use, therefore please use caution. We ask that you bring your own cleaning supplies as there will be none available during check-out.

STORAGE

The Residence Hall does not have the ability to provide storage for personal belongings.  We do not ship items.  If you have someone that is collecting your items, you need to email Diana at dwilsonFREELARAMIE with the first and last name of the individual and the date & time they will arrive.  Diana will coordinate with you about access to the space.

KEYS

If you have left and moved out all items, but you still have your keys.

You can mail back your keys in a box or padded envelope (keys that are lost in mailing will be charged as lost keys) to:

Diana Wilson

1340 E. College Drive

Cheyenne, Wyoming 82007

MOVING SUPPLIES

There will be a limited supply of plastic bags in the Residence Hall lobbies available to students to move out.


 

We deeply appreciate your patience as we work quickly and diligently to address each individual student’s needs.

If you have concerns or questions, contact Director of Residential Living & Learning, Diana Wilson by email at dwilsonFREELARAMIE or by phone at 307.432.1798. We truly appreciate your patience and partnership during this unprecedented time.

Best,

Dr. Joe Schaffer
LCCC President

Update Mar. 17, 2020

Video message from LCCC President Dr. Joe Schaffer.

Dear Campus Community…

I know it is far from a professional production, but I wanted to share with you a brief video message to try and offer a more personal connection amidst all the complexity, emails, and information. 

President Dr. Joe Schaffer talking to camera

Quick Update To Campus

Best,

Dr. Joe Schaffer

President, Laramie County Community College

Update Mar. 16, 2020

All employees will be directed to work from home starting Mar. 18.

Dear Campus Community...

Coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to be top of mind and we've been actively monitoring updates from the CDC, state, and county to help us manage this rapidly evolving situation. As promised in my communication last night, I am emailing tonight to announce our decision to suspend the physical operations of LCCC at all of our locations. While I realize this may, on the surface, appear drastic, the current modeling and actual spread of COVID-19 suggests these measures are not only prudent, but also necessary to minimize the spike of cases and impact on our health systems.

Based on the most recent guidance from national, state, and local officials, and in an abundance of caution, we have decided to cease all physical operations on campus starting, Wednesday March 18. At that time, the following will be in effect for our employees.

  • All employees will be directed to work from home.
  • For certain critical functions, some employees will be allowed to come to campus. This must be approved by their cabinet representative, and they are expected to only stay on campus for as long as necessary to complete the critical function. They are also required to notify Campus Safety upon their arrival and departure. Campus access will only be allowed between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m.
  • Classified (hourly) employees will be compensated for their regular work hours during this time. They will be expected to be available and responsive to work on requests from their supervisor as necessary and practical when working from home. Guidance on how hours will be recorded in Time Clock is forthcoming and will be communicated to hourly employees.
  • Part-Time employees may also be asked to continue with their current responsibilities, in whole, or in part, based on the direction of their supervisors. We will make sure that Part-Time employees are not negatively impacted by this situation, and they will receive compensation at least at the same level as their last pay-period.
  • All employees should be ready and prepared to return to work at any time should the situation change and conditions allow.

You will have tomorrow (Tuesday, March 17) to gather what materials, resources, etc. that are needed for you to be able to work from home. I suggest you also speak with your supervisor to receive additional guidance and to get any immediate questions you have, answered.

Since we do not have clarity on how long this situation will remain, and how long this guidance will be in place, we will evaluate the situation on an ongoing basis and I will provide regular updates as we receive additional information. I also encourage you to visit lccc.wy.edu/Covid for current information and a list of FAQs.

At the end of this note, I will provide some suggested language for you to use for out-of-office email auto response, as well as a script for what we suggest you record on your voicemail.

Finally, I want to remind you to be cautious of dealing with sensitive information when you are working remotely. If you haven't yet completed, or even if you have, please review the Security Mentor training called "Working Remotely: Anywhere, Anytime". To access this, log into myLCCC, open "Cyber Security Training" and then click on the "My Lessons" tab on the right-hand side to see all the training available for this current fiscal year.

We recognize that this is an unprecedented and unique situation, and yet with our collective efforts and the resolve we are known for in Wyoming, we will successfully navigate our way through to the other side of this challenge.

Best,

Dr. Joe Schaffer

President, Laramie County Community College

Email Auto Response:

Thank you for your message. In response to the Coronavirus (Covid-19) pandemic, LCCC employees are currently working remotely. Though you may experience a delay in response time, we are committed to providing you the same level of excellent customer service. I appreciate your understanding.

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Hello, you have reached (insert your name) at Laramie County Community College. Thank you for your call. At this time I am working remotely and it may impact my response time to your message. I appreciate your call and will respond to you as soon as possible.

Update Mar. 15, 2020

Additional closures and actions effective March 16.

Dear Campus Community…

Although not what we had hoped, but certainly something we anticipated, the coronavirus (COVID-19) situation has resulted in more significant measures being taken across the country, Wyoming, and here in LCCC’s service area.  The most recent announcement was from Laramie County School District #1 and #2.  They will be closing all schools effective immediately.  I understand they will reassess by April 6th and determine if they will continue with the closure or resume school. Given the guidance from the Governor and Superintendent of Public Instruction, we anticipate Albany County School District #1 doing the same.

Please understand, the primary reason for these measures are to minimize and slow the spread of COVID-19 so that we do not overwhelm the healthcare system.  The following graphic is a simple, yet effective visual of why this is so important.  In short, we need to be prepared, not panicked.

flattening the curve - diagram of the coronavirus spread

The most effective way for us to accomplish the slowing of the spread of COVID-19 is through social distancing methods and good hygiene.  Social distancing focuses on reducing gatherings of significant numbers of individuals, and keeping physical space of three to six feet of distance between people.  This is really the driving purpose behind school closures, event cancellations, and other measures.

I want to share with you some additional actions LCCC is taking immediately to play our part.  Effective Monday, March 16th, the following are in effect at LCCC:

  • The Dental Clinic will be closed until April 12th.
  • The Children’s Discovery Center (CDC) will be closed through April 6th
  • All events (including life enrichment and business trainings) on the LCCC Campus and locations will be postponed or cancelled through May 15th.
  • The Ludden Library and Learning Commons will be closed. Virtual services will be provided.
  • The Recreation and Athletics Complex (RAC) will be closed through May 15th

For employees with children who are impacted by the closure of the schools and the CDC, please take the time you need tomorrow to ensure your children are cared for and to make necessary arrangements.  We are asking that you work with your supervisors on specific arrangements.  The College recognizes this may be stressful time and present significant challenges.  While we need to ensure the business of LCCC continues, nothing is as important as the health and well-being of your family, and that is where we want your priorities to be.  We will make what accommodations we are able to ensure this can happen.

Tomorrow I will be meeting with the President’s Cabinet and consulting with the Board of Trustees to determine what essential staffing functions must remain on campus, who may be able to work from home and perform their work duties remotely. We are exploring this because we believe having fewer people on campus will meaningfully reduce the risk of exposure and spread of the coronavirus. We will also discuss taking steps to limit contact for those in all offices including limiting in-person meetings, reminding employees to maintain a safe distance from one another and encouraging people who don’t need to be in the office to stay home.

As a reminder, our previous guidance stays in place.  If you are sick or have any of the main symptoms associated with COVID-19 (fever, shortness of breath, or cough), you are required to stay home until fully recovered and without symptoms for at least 24 hours. If you do not have enough leave to accommodate your absence, please contact HR to see if you are eligible for our temporary, modified sick leave donation program. 

I realize that you may have questions, concerns, or suggestions.  While I am open and willing to help, I would encourage you to reach out to your supervisor or Cabinet member as they are likely the best positioned to help answer your immediate needs.

Thank you for all you do for LCCC.  Remember, together we have accomplished so much, and together we will overcome this challenge as well.

Best,

Dr. Joe Schaffer

President, Laramie County Community College

Update Mar. 13, 2020

 LCCC’s spring break will be extended through Tuesday, March 31. We are extending spring break for students to give instructors and staff time to adapt classes, activities and services to be delivered virtually.  Beginning Wednesday, April 1, classes will resume and delivered primarily in an online format.

Dear LCCC Students,

Laramie County Community College (LCCC) continues to respond to the COVID-19 outbreak in coordination with state and local health departments and guidance from other relevant agencies.  Our two primary areas of focus remain on your safety and education. 

LCCC’s spring break will be extended through Tuesday, March 31. We are extending spring break for students to give instructors and staff time to adapt classes, activities, and services to be delivered virtually.  Beginning Wednesday, April 1, classes will resume and delivered primarily in an online format.

LCCC is making these adaptations to allow students to complete their spring semester courses to the fullest extent possible. By extending spring break, faculty will be able to develop the necessary format to continue providing a high quality education to you. You will receive communication from your instructors regarding how courses will be completed – including lab, shop classes, clinical work, and other hands-on courses.   

Technology hardware (e.g., laptops, etc.) assistance will be provided to students that have identified hardships limiting their ability to learn virtually.  These will be provided on a minimal, as-needed basis. Details on requesting and checking out this equipment will be shared with you in the coming days.

Most all campus services will remain available during spring break and through the remainder of the semester. The residence hall will remain open, although students residing on campus are not required to return to the halls. Students who remain in residence halls will continue to have access to dining facilities. We have identified rooms in the residence halls that will be used for quarantine purposes if a case is confirmed in our resident population. Essential student  and academic support services (such as advising, counseling, the library, etc.) will remain open and operational; virtual appointments and communications are encouraged where feasible.  

Further, all LCCC-sponsored travel will be cancelled and prohibited through the end of the semester, May 15. Other travel guidance from my March 11 update remains in effect regarding personal travel.   Travel to areas (internationally or domestically) with known cases of Covid-19 is strongly discouraged.  

As of now, the campus will remain open during every phase of these precautionary efforts. Concerned students are free to limit their physical engagement with the campus, but offices and buildings will remain open with uninterrupted operations. Please continue to follow previous guidance.  Students who believe they have been potentially exposed to Covid-19 should self-quarantine for four (4) days and monitor for symptoms.  If symptoms occur and/or if you test positive for Covid-19, you will be required to remain home or in quarantine in the residence halls.  If the symptoms become severe, you are encouraged to see a healthcare professional.

Your education and safety are paramount to us at LCCC. We will continue to follow CDC and state-level guidance on these plans. Additional updates will be shared with you as details become available. Information can also be found at www.lccc.wy.edu/covid.

Even with the circumstances, I hope you enjoy spring break.  Please know we will be ready for you to finish your spring semester when we start back up on April 1st.  

Best,

Dr. Joe Schaffer

President, Laramie County Community College

Dear Campus Community,

As we continue to watch the news about Covid-19 and deal with our first case in Wyoming, we recognize many of you are concerned with the impact the virus is having on educational institutions across the country. Here at LCCC, our primary goals are to minimize the chance of exposure and transmission of the disease, while also mitigating any negative impacts to the College. Therefore, in response to the growing concerns, and in alignment with actions taken by the other Wyoming community colleges, LCCC will be implementing the following response to protect our students, employees and our community members that visit campus. Please bear with me, this message is longer than usual.

First and foremost, the most significant focus should remain on prevention.  As I have shared before, we control the spread of Covid-19, and the most basic hygiene practices are encouraged.  These include the regular and thorough washing of your hands, keeping your hands away from your face, disinfecting/cleaning areas that are frequently touched, not coming into contact with individuals known to have or have been exposed to the illness, staying home if you are sick, etc. 

CLASSES AND INSTRUCTION

We will be extending our spring break for students until Tuesday, March 31. Classes will resume on Wednesday, April 1 and will be moved primarily to an online or virtual format through the end of the Spring semester (May 15, 2020).  We are committed to ensuring that students will be able to complete their spring semester courses to the fullest extent possible. Our primary purpose for extending the spring break for students is to provide faculty and staff the time to shift our classes to virtual offerings and prepare for virtual delivery.

  • Technology hardware assistance will be provided on a limited, and as-needed basis to individuals that have hardships limiting their ability to learn or teach virtually. This equipment will be available beginning April 1 and information regarding distribution will be provided to students and faculty.
  • Students who are enrolled in lab, “shop” or clinical courses can expect to receive further information regarding course instruction from their faculty member(s) or school dean. That information will be communicated via Canvas.
  • Students currently enrolled in A8 courses will receive communication from their instructor regarding accelerated course completion.

TRAVEL

We are immediately suspending all institutionally-sponsored travel through May 15.

  • We are discouraging booking of travel between May 16 and June 30;  if you do have travel planned for this time, you do not have to cancel. We will reassess in early May. At that time, we will determine if it will be allowed or need to be cancelled.
  • Travel guidance from my March 11  update remains in effect regarding personal travel. Personal travel internationally, or domestically to areas with known cases of Covid-19 is strongly discouraged.

EMPLOYEES

All employees should continue to report to work as normal. Faculty will be expected to report back to work as planned after spring break (March 23).  Gatherings, meetings or a collection of more than 20 LCCC faculty, staff and/or students, at one time are highly discouraged.

As with previous guidance, employees who believe they have been potentially exposed to Covid-19 should self-quarantine for four (4) days and monitor for symptoms.  If symptoms occur, you will be required to take sick leave and remain home, and you are encouraged to see a healthcare professional if the symptoms become severe. 

If you need to self-quarantine, are diagnosed with Covid-19, or have a first-degree relation that is diagnosed with the virus, you will be asked to use sick leave during this time. LCCC will help employees without leave who are directly impacted by Covid-19 and unable to work as defined in Procedure 6.6.1P. LCCC will be creating a temporary, modified sick leave donation program.  Contact HR for assistance accessing donated leave. To qualify, employees must use all current leave (sick, vacation, personal) first.  A maximum amount of donated leave per employee will be 10 working days.

CAMPUS SERVICES

The College will continue to operate essential core business operations. This includes the Children’s Discovery Center, Student and Academic Services, Dining Services (you may experience some limited offerings), Ludden Library, etc. Virtual appointments and communications are encouraged where feasible. 

The residence hall will remain open, although students residing on campus are not required to return to campus. Students who remain in residence halls will continue to have access to dining facilities. We have identified rooms in the residence halls that will be used for quarantine purposes if a case is confirmed in our resident population.

GROUPS/EVENTS ON CAMPUS

Following the guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and state/local officials, LCCC will take measures to minimize large group gatherings on campus. Effective March 31, all events where anticipated attendance exceeds 100 individuals, will be prohibited on any of the LCCC campuses. Please note, this date may move up or back depending on the most current guidance.

We will continue to monitor developments related to Covid-19 and adjust this response plan as necessary and prudent. We will also continue to follow CDC and state-level guidance on these plans. Future response actions MAY include:

  • Partial or full closure of the LCCC campus and locations.
  • Implementing flexible or virtual schedules of some or all employees.
  • Cancellation of or moving Commencement to a virtual environment.
  • Concluding the spring semester early or delaying the start of summer semester.

As more information becomes available and as additional decisions are made, we will continue to reach out to campus with details and provide updates at http://lccc.wy.edu/covid. We are also developing a Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ’s) to answer more detailed questions that have or will arise.  Please also continue to utilize the CDC website for the most current information on Covid-19: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html.

Thank you all for being diligent, compassionate, and engaged as we navigate these complex times.  I am continually awed by your commitment to our students, our community, and to our mission.  I appreciate all you do for LCCC. 

Best,

Dr. Joe Schaffer

President, Laramie County Community College

Update Mar. 12, 2020

At this time, there is one presumed case of the Coronavirus in Sheridan County, Wyoming. No cases have been identified in Laramie County. LCCC has no current travel restrictions.

Update Mar. 11, 2020

At this time, there are no confirmed cases of the Coronavirus in Wyoming, and LCCC has no current travel restrictions.

Good Morning Students,

As many of you prepare for spring break and time away from the classroom, we would like to assure you that we will continue to monitor Covid-19 (Coronavirus) during this time. As you return from your much-deserved break, we ask that you closely monitor yourself for symptoms related to the virus (fever, cough, shortness of breath).

We are strongly discouraging travel to countries that have been identified as being high-risk for infection.  If you are traveling to areas that have confirmed cases of Covid-19, or to areas where you will be in close proximity to large populations of people that may have come from these areas (e.g., destination tourism spots) we ask that you closely monitor yourself for symptoms (fever, cough, shortness of breath) as you return home and to campus. NOTE: Fever and shortness of breath are the most common symptoms of Covid-19.  

Upon return from travel, if you have been exposed or in close proximity to other individuals known to have been infected by Covid-19, or if you are experiencing the identified symptoms, please self-quarantine at home for four days or while the symptoms are present. If you live in the LCCC Residence Halls, please contact Diana Wilson, Residence Hall Director, (dwilsonFREELARAMIE) and inform her of your symptoms. Additionally, reach out to your instructors and inform them of why you are absent from class. We have asked that faculty try to be flexible with rescheduling tests or providing work online. 

If after four days you develop or continue to present symptoms, we encourage you to contact a local healthcare provider for information on being tested for Covid-19. 

LCCC is not making any college-wide adjustments to our course delivery methods or implementing travel restrictions.  Some of your instructional activities may be modified by direction of your instructors.  They will have approval to do so from their dean, and will also work closely with students in these instances.

As more information becomes available and as additional decisions are made, we will continue to reach out to campus with details and provide updates at http://lccc.wy.edu/virus-information.aspx. We encourage you to utilize the CDC website for the most current information on Covid-19.

 

Best,

 

Dr. Joe Schaffer

 

President, Laramie County Community College

 

Dear Campus Community,

I realize that there is significant, and increasing information (both formal and informal) circulating about Covid-19 (Coronavirus).  Please note, at this time, LCCC is not making any campus-wide adjustments to our operations, instructional delivery, or implementing travel restrictions. However, as we approach spring break for both LCCC and LCSD#1 and #2, we would like to provide guidance for our employees and students returning from break and travels.

First and foremost, the most significant focus should be on prevention.  As I have shared before, we control the spread of Covid-19, and the most basic hygiene practices are encouraged.  These include the regular and thorough washing of your hands, keeping your hands away from your face, disinfecting/cleaning areas that are frequently touched, not coming into contact with individuals known to have or have been exposed to the illness, and staying home if you are sick, etc. 

We are strongly discouraging travel to countries that have been identified as being high-risk for infection.  If you are traveling to other areas (domestic or international) that have confirmed cases of Covid-19, or to places where you will be in close proximity to large populations of people that may have come from these areas (e.g., destination tourism spots) we ask that you closely monitor yourself for symptoms (fever, cough, shortness of breath) as you return home and to campus. NOTE: Fever and shortness of breath are the most common symptoms of Covid-19. 

Upon return from travel, if you have been exposed or in close proximity to other individuals known to have been infected by Covid-19, or if you are experiencing the identified symptoms, please self-quarantine at home for four (4) days or while the symptoms are present. For employees, please communicate with your supervisor; if you have sick leave, you will be asked to use your leave during this time. If you do not have sick leave, contact HR for assistance. If you are on campus for work/class and are presenting symptoms, you will be asked to go home and use sick leave.

If after four days you develop or continue to present symptoms, we encourage you to contact a local healthcare provider for information on being tested for Covid-19. To help our campus remain as healthy as possible, we ask that supervisors and faculty remain flexible with employees and students, providing alternate work environments if possible, allowing for a make-up test, etc. We will provide a similar message to our students about awareness of Covid-19 and self-quarantine recommendations.

For those employees that are not traveling, we ask that you also use these guidelines if you begin to present symptoms of Covid-19.

As more information becomes available and as additional decisions are made, we will continue to reach out to campus with details and provide updates at lccc.wy.edu/virus-information.aspx. We encourage you to utilize the CDC website for the most current information on Covid-19.

 

Best,

 

Dr. Joe Schaffer

 

President, Laramie County Community College

 

Good Morning Faculty,

As we all continue to watch the developments related to Covid-19 (Coronavirus), we are aware that many of you may have questions about our academic offerings, our students, and school-sponsored travel for academic, club, and sports activities. At this time, LCCC is not making any adjustments to our course delivery methods or implementing travel restrictions. If you are traveling, continue to remind students to use good personal hygiene to remain as healthy as possible.

We recognize that some students may have apprehension about traveling at this time. President’s Cabinet is asking that everyone have a conversation with our students about the possible risks associated with the planned travel and make students aware of symptoms related to Covid-19 (Coronavirus) – fever, cough, shortness of breath. If a student determines they no longer want to travel, they should be permitted to withdraw from the activity with no academic/participation penalty to them. Students should be reimbursed for out-of-pocket expenses that they have paid. If you have questions or concerns about providing these reimbursements, contact Pam DeMartin in accounting. If the club or organization has paid the fee, we will work to assist the club in recovering these expenses.

If the faculty member does not feel it is safe to travel, the trip will be cancelled completely. Students are not permitted to travel without an LCCC sponsor. If you do travel with students, please monitor them carefully and report any concerns or health-related issues to your supervisor to determine the best course of action.

As more information becomes available and as additional decisions are made, we will continue to reach out to campus with details and provide updates at http://lccc.wy.edu/virus-information.aspxWe encourage you to utilize the CDC website for the most current information on Covid-19.

Best,

Dr. Joe Schaffer

President, Laramie County Community College

Update Mar. 4, 2020

Dear Campus Community…

As we continue to hear about the Coronavirus (Covid-19) and its spread in the U.S. and around the world, I wanted to just reassure everyone that we are aware of and keeping an eye on this concern. LCCC is working closely with our community partners and state resources to stay abreast of changes in Covid-19’s presence in America and more specifically Wyoming. We will rely on these partners for guidance for preventing, and responding, to infections in our community.  As recently as yesterday afternoon we met with leadership from the Department of Health, the Laramie County Emergency Management Agency (EMA) and others.  Currently, there are no cases of the Coronavirus in Wyoming. 

If you are interested, the most current information is available on the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) webpage: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/index.html.

Here are a few specific things that LCCC is working on right now:

  • Establishment/Refinement of a Business Continuity Plan (how we will keep the most critical aspects of our work going should the virus have a significant impact on us)
  • Forming communication channels and priorities to help keep employees and students aware, prepared, and to be able to respond if necessary
  • Preventative measures on campus to minimize the risk of the infection and spread of this illness

To the last one, the best thing we all can be doing right now is practice solid preventative hygiene activities. Things we should do by practice to prevent the spread of seasonal illnesses like the flu:

  1. Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  2. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  3. Please stay home when you are sick.
  4. Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  5. Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  6. Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
  7. If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.

The last thing I will share pertains to travel precautions.  I know that spring break is just around the corner and many of our students will be traveling.  We also have numerous employees traveling for both work and vacation-related reasons.  The CDC has also provided some excellent information to help inform travelers.  Please see their FAQ’s for more information if travel is in your future: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/faqs.html

As information changes and we receive details or updates on Covid-19, we will continue to share any timely information with students, faculty and staff.

Best,

Dr. Joe Schaffer

President, Laramie County Community College