Coronavirus frequently asked questions
Please be assured that the university is doing everything in its power to safeguard the health of the campus community. Please check this site for frequent updates.
- Is Wayne State canceling classes?
All face-to-face classes will transition to online and remote instruction beginning Monday, March 23, and continue for the remainder of the semester. Exceptions for laboratory, performance and other classes, which present an extreme challenge for online/remote instruction, will be considered on a case-by-case basis upon recommendation of the appropriate dean.
- Have class dates for the winter semester changed?
Aside from the cancellation of face-to-face classes until March 23, which will then transition to online and remote instruction, the winter semester academic calendar has not changed. Finals week is still scheduled for Wednesday, April 22, through Tuesday, April 28.
- Has the winter semester withdrawal date been extended?
The withdrawal deadline for winter has been extended to April 20. Finals weeks is still scheduled for Wednesday, April 22, through Tuesday, April 28. For face-to-face classes that move online, exams will also move online.
Please use the "transcript by email" option instead of requesting it by paper, if possible, in order to expedite delivery of your transcript (typically, sent out in an hour if you have no holds) and reduce person-to-person contact. Our team will reach out to you with any questions.
- Are finals going to be online?
For face-to-face classes that move online, exams will also move online.
- What if I do not have access to remote learning tools?
For support, contact Computing and Information Technology at 313-577-4357 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Wayne State is exploring ways to support students who do not have access to a computer off campus or who may have limited connectivity, and will continue to expand and improve these supports as we better understand your needs. Remember: The way you receive support from the university may change, but our commitment to provide you that support has not.
- In health-related schools and colleges, how will clinical rotations and other responsibilities be handled?
The health schools/colleges (medicine, pharmacy and health sciences, nursing, and social work) have unique student instruction situations (e.g., clinical rotations). The deans of these schools and colleges will communicate further instructions based on the guidance of their accrediting agencies.
- Will exceptions be made for laboratory and performance classes?
Exceptions for laboratory, performance and other classes, which present an extreme challenge for online/remote instruction, will be considered on a case-by-case basis upon recommendation of the dean of the respective school or college. Any rationale provided to support such a request should detail extraordinary measures taken to reduce the risk of disease transmission.
- Have spring/summer classes been canceled?
No plans have been made about spring/summer classes at this time.
- Will commencement ceremonies be canceled?
In accordance with government restrictions on large gatherings, Wayne State has postponed its commencement ceremonies for the winter semester. Graduates will still receive their degrees. The Wayne State School of Medicine and Wayne Law have different academic calendars and different commencement dates. Information about their commencement dates will be communicated once available.
- Who do I contact if I need technical support?
Information about accessing technology off campus — including discounted and free internet and cellular service — can be found at Computing & Information Technology's (C&IT) resource page. Additionally, the C&IT Help Desk has extended its weekday hours from 7:30 a.m. to 9 p.m. and added weekend hours from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. For support, contact 313-577-4357 or email@example.com.
- Where can students find resources for learning online?
The Academic Success Center's Learn Anywhere webpage has links to numerous resources to assist online learning, as well as tips to help students navigate this transition.
- Have there been cases of COVID-19 on campus?
Yes. Members of the Wayne State community have tested positive for the coronavirus (COVID-19). In line with U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) protocol, these individuals are now under the care of trained clinicians and will be in isolation off campus. See the confirmed cases webpage for more information.
- Is campus still open?
Campus remains open, although many buildings are closed. Most campus buildings are locked and can only be accessed either by a OneCard or a building key. People without card access who need to enter a building should call the WSUPD at 313-577-2222; WSUPD has committed to respond to these requests within 15 minutes. WSUPD continues to patrol the campus and check facilities as usual. If you need to get into a building and would like a police escort, call the police department at the number above. For a full list of closed buildings, view our campus buildings list.
- Do employees need to report to work?
Wayne State has instituted guidelines regarding Flexible Work Arrangements, leave and other options during this time. Visit HR's coronavirus page for information on options and guidelines.
- Is campus housing open?
Atchison Hall will close at 5 p.m. March 29, but other campus housing locations remain open. Students who do not need to be on campus are strongly urged to return to their permanent place of residence, if possible. For more information regarding housing services, early move out and credits, visit housing's coronavirus webpage.
- Is campus dining open?
Towers Cafe is open for breakfast, lunch and dinner during posted hours. All diners are required to use to-go/takeout options effective immediately until further notice. Most other campus food retail, including Gold 'n' Greens, is closed until further notice. Some shops on Anthony Wayne Drive and around campus are open for takeout service only.
- How do I get meals if I need to self-quarantine?
Housing offers a meal delivery service for students who are self-quarantined. Students will receive more information regarding meal delivery should they be assigned to a temporary room. While these changes are inconvenient, please remember that the CDC recommends social distancing as a critical strategy to slow the spread of COVID-19 and reduce the risk of contracting the disease.
- Is The W Food Pantry still open?
- Is the campus shuttle still operating?
Due to the COVID-19 pandemic and the governor's "Stay Home. Stay Safe" executive order, effective immediately, all WSU shuttle services are suspended. Once the executive order is revoked, shuttle services will be reviewed and re-implemented, as needed.
- What should I do if I am a student employee on campus?
We know that many students, including graduate assistants, depend on funds earned through campus employment. Employees should contact their current supervisor with specific questions regarding working remotely.
- Are spring sports canceled?
In lieu of the NCAA's decision to cancel its spring sports championships, the Athletics Department has decided to cancel its spring sports seasons.
- Will parking passes be refunded?
Refunds will be issues for the remainder of the semester if students no longer need parking due to classes moving online. To be issued a refund for your semester parking pass please complete the online cancellation form. Refunds will take from 4-6 weeks to process.
- Are campus events canceled?
All events with 50 people or more will be canceled through the end of this semester, April 28, to adhere to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's recommendations for social distancing. The Dean of Students Office has canceled all face-to-face programming and events, and is actively exploring opportunities for virtual engagement.
- How do I cancel my campus event?
To cancel your event, you can call 313-577-4585 or WSU departments and student organizations can also cancel online. If you have any questions please call 313-577-4585 for assistance.
- Is there a team meeting regularly to manage the handling of COVID-19 at Wayne State University?
Yes. A team of Wayne State professionals — including infectious disease physicians and nurses; risk management, facilities and communications staff; and others — meets on a regular basis to plan strategies for handling a case or cases of COVID-19 on campus. Wayne State is adhering closely to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC) recommendations on all fronts.
- Has the university taken steps to clean or disinfect commonly touched surfaces on campus?
We have increased our routine general sanitization protocols, putting increased focus on high-touch point maintenance, which includes push plates, door handles, partition latches, hand rails, manual faucets and fixture handles, and kitchenette sinks. This protocol is frequently used in medical and hospital environments.
An additional 19 Dial hand sanitizer podiums were deployed recently, and a reorganization of existing podiums is underway, concentrating on building entrances and elevator lobby areas. All supervisors will direct staff coverage areas to ensure multiple visits to restrooms for the stock and supply of soaps and towels in dispensers.
- Will WSU reimburse housing?
Yes. details on housing refunds and credits can be found on Housing's coronavirus webpage.
- Can I get my OneCard refunded?
Money added to your OneCard is not refundable unless you are leaving WSU permanently or graduating. If you meet this criteria and would like to close/cancel your OneCard account and have your funds returned to you, you may complete an online form. Please note that there is a $15 administrative fee to close your account, which will be deducted from the balance. Please allow 2-6 weeks from the time you submit the form for your money to be refunded. You can also choose to keep the money on your OneCard and use it at campus vendors, including Starbucks, the Wayne State Bookstore and others, as well as at select off-campus vendors.
The OneCard and Parking Service Center requests that students, faculty, staff and WSU affiliates attempt to handle things online or remotely as much as possible. The office can be contacted by email. If it is determined that you must be assisted you in person, you will be asked to come in during the offices' limited hours, Monday and Thursday from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. Please enter and exit through the west entrance of the Welcome Center.
- How can I obtain a new or replacement OneCard?
To obtain a replacement OneCard:
- Log in to your OneCard account via Academica.
- Under "Personalize," go to "Lost/Stolen Card" and mark your card lost.
- Under "Make a Deposit," follow the instructions to use your credit or debit card to deposit the $20 replacement card fee into your account.
- Email firstname.lastname@example.org let the office know you have lost your card and that the replacement card fee was deposited into your account. Provide an address where the OneCard Office can mail your card or, if you are living on campus, tell the OneCard Office what building you live in.
- The OneCard Office will manually deduct the funds, print the card and mark it found. Staff can then either mail the card or drop it off at the student's residence hall/apartment front desk.
- For employees, the OneCard Office can either mail the card to your home residence or make other arrangements via email communication.
To obtain a new OneCard
For individuals not required to participate in an orientation:
- Register for classes.
- Review the photo upload guidelines.
- Log in to your OneCard account via Academica.
- Choose "Photo Upload" from the menu and follow the instructions for submitting your photo. Wait for an email saying your photo was approved.
- Email email@example.com to let the OneCard Office know that your photo was approved and provide the address where you would like your OneCard mailed.
Any departments that coordinate a New Student Orientation should reach out to the OneCard/Parking Service Center to work out details regarding the process to get cards to their new students.
- Is the university restricting travel for students and faculty in the wake of this public health threat?
In accordance with U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommendations, Wayne State's Presidential Coronavirus Committee has enacted the following procedures and recommendations regarding travel:
- All university-sponsored international travel is prohibited.
- Wayne State will not approve travel to any jurisdiction identified by the CDC with a Level 3 Travel Warning for coronavirus. This will also apply to any other country or region added to the Level 3 Travel Warning list in the days and weeks ahead. We strongly discourage personal travel to countries or regions with a Level 3 Travel Warning.
- We also ask that you restrict travel to nations on the Level 2 Travel Advisory list for COVID-19.
- If you decide to travel, educate yourself about health resources in the areas under consideration. You may be subject to governmental travel restrictions with little or no notice, and airlines may limit or cancel flights without warning. You will be subject to any restrictions in place at the time of your return.
- If you plan on domestic travel, please note that the known prevalence of COVID-19 infection in the United States is changing rapidly. Please visit the CDC website for daily updates about spread and outbreak clusters, and check for the latest information before embarking on any trip.
- Spring break study abroad programs have been canceled, and there is a chance we will also have to cancel summer study abroad programs. We will continue to monitor the situation closely.
- What should a student do if they are returning from international travel?
The U.S. State Department maintains a list of countries affected by travel advisories, many of which stem from the COVID-19 outbreak. There are four advisory level:
- Level 1: Blue – Exercise Normal Precautions
- Level 2: Yellow – Exercise Increased Caution
- Level 3: Orange – Reconsider Travel
- Level 4: Red – Do Not Travel
Students returning from countries with travel advisories set at levels 2 and higher should quarantine themselves for 14 days immediately upon their arrival in the United States. They should also alert the Campus Health Center (CHC) that they have returned and have begun their quarantine. If they exhibit symptoms of COVID-19, they should contact their primary physician or the CHC immediately, whereupon they will be guided through the COVID-19 testing protocol. If they test positive, they should alert the CHC immediately.
- What if I have preapproved travel that has been canceled due to COVID-19?
The evolving situation related to the COVID-19 virus means that it is possible that faculty or staff may need to cancel preapproved university business-related travel plans. The reason may be due to a canceled conference and/or when travel is considered inadvisable.
In this case, your first course of action should be to seek a refund from the vendor(s) where the expense was paid (airline, hotel, conference host). If a faculty/staff member is requesting reimbursement from WSU for expenses related to a preapproved university business trip that they did not attend, it is an exception to policy and needs the approval of a dean, associate provost/associate vice president or higher in order to process reimbursement. Learn more about Wayne State's travel policy.
- What should I do if I am sick or exposed to COVID-19?
If you test positive for COVID-19, experience symptoms of the virus or have been exposed to someone who has tested positive, it is vital that you isolate yourself from others and take precautions to self-quarantine. This is the most effective way to ensure you don't spread the virus to others. Separate yourself from others by staying in a specially designated quarantine area or, if you are at home, inside your residence.
- What should I do if I have a fever, cough or shortness of breath?
If you are exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19 (fever, dry cough and/or shortness of breath), your first step should be to call the Campus Health Center (313-577-5041), which can assist you 24/7. When you call, notify them of your symptoms and whether you've traveled out of the country recently.
A majority of people with these symptoms will not turn out to have COVID-19, and your physician may make a determination that you need not be tested for the virus based on your history and presentation. However, if you have these symptoms, you could have influenza, which is also very contagious, so it's important to be evaluated by a health care professional.
- What is coronavirus?
Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses that are common in humans and certain animal species. The novel coronavirus disease 2019, also called COVID-19, is a particular strand of coronavirus that was first identified in China in December 2019.
The coronavirus outbreak is a significant health concern, and we as a university are committed to ensuring the safety and health of the entire campus community.
- What are symptoms of COVID-19?
Fever, dry cough or shortness of breath are the most common symptoms of COVID-19.
- How does COVID-19 spread?
Although there is still much to learn about how COVID-19 spreads, it appears to spread the same way the flu does: from one infected person to another. That means through the air by coughing or sneezing; close personal contact, such as touching or shaking hands; and touching an object or surface with the virus on it and then touching your mouth, nose or eyes.
- What can be done to prevent COVID-19?
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 30 seconds
- Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer frequently throughout the day
- Clean frequently touched surfaces such as door knobs, railings, countertops, remote controls, cabinet handles and light switches
- Avoid touching your mouth, nose and eyes with unwashed hands
- Don't travel when you are sick
- Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, and throw the tissue in the trash
- Avoid contact with people who are sick
- Stay home from school or work if you are sick, and contact your doctor or the Campus Health Center (313- 577-5041)
- Is there a vaccine or certain medicines that are effective in preventing or treating COVID-19?
Scientists are hard at work trying to develop an effective vaccine to prevent the disease, but, realistically, a vaccine is likely still several months away.
- Should I wear a mask?
Wearing a mask is not recommended for those without symptoms who have not traveled internationally and do not have contact with someone who has COVID-19. For the most part, masks should be reserved for patients with confirmed COVID-19 and health care practitioners treating patients with the virus.
- What should I do if I suspect one of my students has been exposed to COVID-19?
Faculty and staff are encouraged to file a CARE report with the Dean of Students Office if they are aware of any students who are concerned that they have been exposed to COVID-19 or who are concerned that they are experiencing symptoms.
- What do I do if I know or hear of someone who may have COVID-19?
Instruct that person to call the Campus Health Center (313-577-5041). In accordance with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines, they have established protocols that include interviewing the potential case, mapping their contacts and recommending testing.
- What if I received that information secondhand?
You must obtain permission from the person to share information. If they do not want to, ask permission to call on their behalf.
- What is Wayne State University's response if a member of the campus community is confirmed as having COVID-19?
- The Campus Health Center will conduct the appropriate procedures within the guidelines of the CDC, which include interviewing the potential case, mapping their contacts and recommending testing.
- The Campus Health Center will notify the leadership of the Presidential Coronavirus Committee.
- Campus will be alerted.
- Applicable buildings will close for cleaning.
- What national websites have additional resources?