Our Path Forward

Dear Campus Community:

Since 1847, Midway University has overcome challenges and adjusted at various times to protect our mission. The recent health crisis prompted us to transition our daytime students to online learning last spring. We quickly adapted and successfully completed the academic year. However, we know our students desire our on-campus experience with small classes and personal attention. They also desire our career-focused education, athletics, and co-curricular opportunities in a bucolic and safe setting.

For these reasons, Midway University plans to resume on-campus, face-to-face instruction, and residential operations for the 2020-21 academic year. We will begin classes on Monday, August 17, 2020, as originally scheduled, and implement a staggered move-in process for residence halls on August 14, 15, and 16. As reported previously and in conjunction with our commitment to affordability, there will not be any increases in tuition and fees for all students for the 2020-2021 academic year.

We have already implemented many new policies and are making campus modifications to ensure safe distancing in our classrooms, residence halls, dining hall, workspaces, athletic facilities (including the new Hunter Field House) and other common areas. The University is working under the direction set forth by federal, state, and local authorities and public health officials as well as the guidance provided by our accrediting bodies and athletic conference. Our focus is on the safety and well-being of our entire campus community including students, faculty, and staff.

While all our plans are not yet finalized and will continue to evolve with guidance from others, we can share the details that we have at this time. We have compiled information by topic, and we will continue to communicate with you as more details are confirmed.

We are looking forward to the start of the fall semester. We know things will be different when students return. But we believe our campus community will adapt and work together to help our students succeed.

Sincerely,
John P. Marsden, Ph.D.
President

Returning to Face-to-Face Instruction

As an institution that has always been committed to offering small classes (the average class size is 16 students), Midway is positioned to quickly accommodate the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) best practices for proper social distancing in our classrooms.

Our Academic Work Group is currently evaluating class rosters and assigned classrooms to adjust as needed to adhere to spacing requirements. Some classes will be shifted to new locations, and we are looking at all spaces on campus that can be utilized for classes to meet.

Our academic calendar will remain as is and we will begin classes on August 17. All students, faculty and staff will be required to wear masks in all buildings in the common areas and in the classrooms.

Our faculty and staff have plans in place to accommodate students who are quarantined due to COVID-19. All course materials will be posted to our online learning management system and we will be utilizing technology in the classroom for students who need to access the class lectures and participate in discussions while they are quarantined. Our faculty will continue to use technology such as Microsoft Teams or Zoom throughout the semester as they have been throughout the spring and summer terms to stay connect with each class and student.

Residence Halls

The University intends to open residence halls to students for the fall. Our reopening will be done with great care and concern, and in accordance with necessary safety protocols, to ensure the health and well-being of our community members.

As our Residence Life staff is continuing to evaluate campus housing to reduce our density, we anticipate lower occupancies per room in most of our residence halls. Because this will limit our on-campus housing offerings, we are eliminating the requirement for all freshmen and sophomores to live on campus this academic year.

Returning students are given priority when rooms are assigned for the following academic year. New students are assigned to housing based on a priority matrix that assigns students from outside of Woodford and surrounding counties by deposit date followed by local students by deposit date.

A quarantine protocol has been established should there be a confirmed case of COVID-19 in one of our residence halls. An off-campus quarantine site has entered into an agreement with Midway University to house students who may have been exposed until they are through the 14 day quarantine period. The off-campus site has suite-style rooms with a kitchenette, private bathroom, and internet access. Meals will be delivered to any residential student who has to be quarantined during their time away from campus.

Detailed instructions, dates and more housing information will be sent out later this summer, but students should plan to be ready to move-in August, 14, 15, and 16, 2020.

Dining

Piper Dining Hall

The dining room capacity will be reduced by 50%. Only two people can sit at a table together and each table will alternate seating arrangement to ensure 6 foot spacing between diners. Tables and chairs will remain stationary and no moving or grouping will be allowed. Each table and chair will be sanitized between uses with Virex products. Napkin dispensers will be on each table and will be sanitized between uses. Salt and Pepper shakers will not be on tables and will only be available in packets upon request.

The Student Center Conference Room will be used for additional dining space due to the reduced capacity in the main dining area. Seating from the Nest Café will be moved into the conference room.

There will be no self-service areas of the dining room other than the drink stations. All food will be served by dining staff who will be wearing gloves and masks. Silverware will be pre-packaged in paper sleeves and handed to each diner rather than having the bins as normal. Normal dining plates, cups, and silverware will be used and washed as normal since the washer heats to temperatures that can kill any virus or bacteria on the surface. Condiments will be served in single-serve packets. A new station will be set up to allow for salads to be made on demand and dressed by a staff member who is gloved and masked. Fresh fruit cups will be pre-packaged and served at the salad station as well. Cereal will be pre-packaged in plastic bags rather than having the self-serve stations available.

To-go dining will be encouraged. Aramark is developing an app that will be ready for Fall 2020 where students, faculty, and staff can choose what they want from the meal’s offerings and it will be packaged for them and available for pick up in the Nest. More information about payment options through the app will become available in mid-June from Aramark.

Outside dining will be available when the weather is good. Round tables and chairs will be set up outside of McMannis with social distance between each table and chair. Dining staff will sanitize each table and chair after each use with Virex products.

The check-in counter will have plexiglass installed and students will be required to scan their own ID in order to not pass items between them and the cashier. Credit card use will be encouraged rather than cash transactions for non-meal plan users. All equipment will be wiped down if anyone touches it during the process. Floor stickers showing six-foot spacing will be placed on the mat coming into the dining hall and surrounding the line in order to promote social distancing while getting food and waiting to enter.

Nest Café

All seating will be removed from the Nest. All products will be spread out in order to have more distance available for customers to maintain social distancing. Floor stickers marking six-foot spacing will be placed around the Nest. If possible, there will be only one entrance and one exit, utilizing the main entrance door for entering and the other door that has normally remained locked for exiting in order to promote better flow when larger numbers need to be served. A limited number of patrons will be allowed in the area at one time. This number is still to be determined as we need to see the space once the seating has been removed and the product is spread out to determine a safe number to be allowed in at one time.

Door handles for product cabinets and other high touch surfaces will be sanitized multiple times per day.

Health and Safety of our Campus Community

For the safety of our entire campus community, everyone on campus is required to wear masks in all common areas. All employees on campus are already completing daily self-report health and temperature checks before reporting to work. In addition, we have temperature checks for all employees at the beginning of each week as they report to work. Anyone reporting or showing symptoms of COVID-19 is not allowed on campus.

Before students arrive on campus in the fall, they will be required to complete training to understand the signs and symptoms of COVID-19 and the ways to best protect themselves and others. In addition, all students attending classes on campus will be asked to complete daily self-report health checks through text message or via email to continue to monitor the health of our campus community.

All students attending on-campus classes will receive two reusable masks, a thermometer, and hand sanitizer on their first day back on campus this fall. A supply of single use masks will be available throughout the year for anyone forgetting a mask.

Our facilities management partner, Aramark, began sanitizing campus buildings with approved cleaning products during the spring semester and has continued to sanitize all used spaces on campus. As classes resume, a system will be in place for sanitizing of all classrooms between classes with provided sanitizing wipes for students and faculty to wipe down surfaces before and after each use. Where necessary, furniture will be moved or rearranged to ensure proper social distancing. Hand sanitizing stations will be available in high traffic areas throughout campus.

Protocols have already been put in place for employees who are at-risk, which allows them to work remotely.

Campus Visitors and Admissions Office Tours

Our campus will remain closed to the public throughout the academic year. Only authorized visitors will be allowed on campus. No outside visitors will be allowed in the residence halls except for scheduled tours conducted by the Admissions Office. Visitors on tours will be required to wear masks and complete a Health Self-Check form prior to arriving on campus. Each tour will be limited to a single-family unit.

To help secure our campus and limit access we are adding a gate at each entrance that will require an approved parking permit or allow for a phone call for approved visitors to be allowed on campus. Deliveries to campus will continue through the farm entrance, and security will monitor and approve those requesting access.

Unfortunately, walk-in campus visits cannot be accommodated at this time. Please be sure to schedule an official campus visit prior to your arrival.

View Our Campus Visitor Policy

Athletics

While we are still waiting on final instructions and guidelines from the NAIA, we are moving forward with plans to resume athletics this academic year. As plans unfold about move-in, practices, and new protocols for student-athletes, we will share that information. Student-athletes will be moving in on the same schedule as other residential students, not early as in previous years.

This is a complex and fluid situation that continues to evolve rapidly. All information on these pages is subject to change as deemed necessary by University leadership in accordance with guidance and recommendations issued by federal, state, and local public health and government officials.

Our previous Coronavirus updates are available for review online.