Safe on the Summit
As a community of students, faculty and staff who desire to love and care for one another, the CSU family will follow the Safe on the Summit plan that prioritizes the health and safety of one another and the greater Clarks Summit region.
Our small class sizes, spacious campus, uniquely designed residence halls and our care for one another are already part of the CSU experience. These things give us a head start in being able to follow best-practice health recommendations and guidelines from experts such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Pennsylvania Department of Health and the Pennsylvania Department of Education.
- Please check this section of CSU’s website frequently. Because guidance changes frequently, the Safe on the Summit plan will continually be reviewed and updated to align to the latest guidance.
- Additional or updated information will be posted when it is available.
- Students will receive consistent communications via their student email accounts, Remind and Schoology with updates and further details; students, please check those platforms regularly.
- Questions can be directed to CoronaResponse@ClarksSummitU.edu.
Our care for students is holistic; it extends to each student’s spiritual, academic, emotional and physical health. We believe residential instruction under caring professors and trusted mentors is the best option to keep our on-campus students on the path to becoming Christ-centered, career-ready graduates.
To accomplish this goal while keeping health and safety a top concern, CSU leadership has created the Safe on the Summit plan to put in place the most responsible and least disruptive strategy. This plan is designed to protect students, faculty, staff and the greater community while delivering the best possible education for our students in a caring environment.
The plan detailed on these web pages has been created using the guidelines provided by the CDC, the Pennsylvania Department of Health and the Pennsylvania Department of Education.
An individual commitment to adhere to these guidelines will keep one another’s best interest in mind and to help us make the CSU campus as safe as possible. All on-campus students and employees are asked to follow the Safe on the Summit COVID-19 plan, which is detailed on multiple pages of this section of the website.
Individual Care and Responsibility
- Before arriving, students should follow recommendations found on the “Pre-arrival” section of the “Student Information” page.
- Students and employees care for one another by following the guidelines outlined in the CSU Safe on the Summit plan.
- Individuals who are not fully vaccinated (students and employees) complete regular health checks, including daily temperature checks, and are required to mask when indoors.
- Students and employees are asked to follow preventative measures and hygiene practices that limit the spread of COVID-19.
- Designated spaces are reserved for isolating individuals who have symptoms or confirmed cases of COVID-19.
- CSU does encourage all eligible students, faculty and staff to get vaccinated, since it is the most effective way to prevent getting COVID-19 and for diminishing its symptoms when infected (with lower rates of serious symptoms, hospitalizations and deaths).
CSU’s campus is open to visitors. Campus access for visitors and most vendors shall only be between the hours of 6 a.m.–midnight.
CSU’s Recreation Center remains open to students, staff and faculty. The Recreation Center will offer limited access to the general public for groups and events through the month of September, with updates to be posted as they become available. No individual memberships are offered. Hand sanitizer is available, and enhanced cleaning and sanitizing take place regularly.
The Café will be open during posted hours for students, employees and the general public.
Murphy Memorial Library
The physical library is open, and online resources are always available here.
Guests of Non-Student Campus Residents
Those living in campus housing including resident directors and occupants of Nordling Hall and Woolsey Hall can have guests in their apartments.
Guests of Residential Students
Residential students may not have off-campus visitors (including friends and family members) as day or overnight guests in the residence hall. Family may only enter the residence hall to assist with move-in during designated times.
Health and Safety Resources
CSU’s Safe on the Summit plan is guided by recommendations from the CDC and PA Department of Health. Access more information from these sources below. Please review these items for your safety and the safety of others to prevent and limit the spread of COVID-19.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention coronavirus main page
- Pennsylvania Department of Health coronavirus main page
Prevention and Safety
- CDC: How to protect yourself and others
- PA DOH: Help stop the spread
- CDC: Face covering dos and don’ts
COVID-19 Symptoms and Care
Mental Health and Wellbeing
- CDC: Mental health and coping during COVID-19 pandemic
- The Foundations Christian Counseling Center is located conveniently on the CSU campus; their services are offered to CSU students at a discounted rate. Start by contacting CSU’s associate dean of men or the associate dean of women.
- In addition, for help and guidance regarding your mental health and wellbeing, please contact your respective associate dean of students.
More Resources from the CDC
Cleaning and Sanitizing
- Sanitizing measures have been increased across campus, including frequent sanitization of high-traffic areas.
- In classrooms, high-touch areas are sanitized daily.
- Hand sanitizing stations are available throughout campus.
Frequently Asked Questions
Q: Is the university campus open?
A: Yes! Please see below for more specifics.
Main Campus: Offices are open during regular hours.
Recreation Center: CSU’s Recreation Center remains open to students, staff and faculty. The Recreation Center will offer limited access to the general public for groups and events through the month of September, with updates to be posted as they become available. No individual memberships are available.
Underground Café: The Café will be open to the public during posted hours.
Murphy Memorial Library: The physical library is open, and online resources are always available here.
Prospective Student Visits: Schedule your in-person visit here.
Q: Are residential students required to get a COVID-19 vaccination?
A: No. CSU is not requiring students to receive a COVID-19 vaccination. If Pennsylvania or another official agency requires student vaccinations in the future, CSU will need to abide by those requirements. At this time, the commonwealth and CDC recommend students receive the vaccine, but it is not required.
CSU does encourage all eligible students, faculty and staff to get vaccinated, since it is the most effective way to prevent getting COVID-19 and for diminishing its symptoms when infected (with lower rates of serious symptoms, hospitalizations and deaths).
Fully vaccinated individuals can opt out of using Healthy Roster. Individuals are considered fully vaccinated two weeks after their second dose of two-dose COVID-19 vaccines or two weeks after their first dose of a single-dose COVID-19 vaccine. In the Safe on the Summit Plan, individuals who are not fully vaccinated are considered unvaccinated. In addition, those who do not disclose their vaccine status will follow all policies or procedures for those who are not fully vaccinated.
Anyone who chooses to wear a mask, whether fully vaccinated or not, is free to do so and must not be shamed, pressured or intimidated for doing so.
Because Lackawanna County is a substantial viral transmission region at this time, wearing a mask is recommended for all individuals when indoors—regardless of vaccination status.
Face coverings are required in the cafeteria unless an individual is seated at his or her table. This is in effect for everyone, even when face coverings are not required elsewhere on campus.
There may be other certain circumstances in which masks will be required; students and employees will be made aware of those circumstances if needed.
Q: What can I do to protect myself?
A: Please find information from the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention.
Q: Can CSU guarantee that I won’t be exposed to or infected by COVID-19 on campus?
A: No community or institution can eliminate all risk of exposure to COVID-19; however, the Safe on the Summit plan uses strategies recommended by the CDC, the Pennsylvania Department of Education and the PA Department of Health as best practices to prevent and limit the spread of COVID-19 on campus. Please follow their current guidelines to learn steps you can personally take to lower your risk.
Q: How can I stay up to date on emerging announcements?
A: General information is posted at ClarksSummitU.edu/coronavirus. Student-specific information will be communicated via Schoology, Remind and/or student CSU email account. Please check all of these regularly.
Q: What is CSU using to create these guidelines?
A: All CSU policies are guided by and comply with recommendations for higher education by the CDC, the PA Department of Health and the PA Department of Education.
Q: What do I need to do before I arrive on campus?
A: Please read the section “Before you Arrive on Campus” on the “Student Information” page.
Q: Am I required to take a COVID-19 test before returning?
Q: If I need to take a COVID-19 test, where can I find options for testing?
A: While there are many options that may vary by location, you can consider these options:
- Pennsylvania residents can call Geisinger’s COVID hotline (570.284.3657) to see if there is a testing location nearby
- Search for local PCR COVID-19 testing sites near you
- Order one online to test yourself at this FDA approved site: https://www.pixel.labcorp.com/covid-19
Q: How will residential academics be different from last year?
A: Your residential classes will be held in-person, replacing last year’s hybrid course structure. We are also very happy to announce that chapel is scheduled for five days each week.
Q: What happens with my academic responsibilities if I become infected with COVID-19 or have to self-quarantine during this period?
A: Online and residential students, please communicate with your professors if you are physically unable to complete coursework due to COVID-19 or other health issues. They will be sensitive to your health needs and will work with you on a plan related to academics. You also need to contact the Academic Office (academics@ClarksSummitU.edu) to make them aware of your situation regarding COVID-19 issues you are experiencing. Students who are sick will be allowed to use remote options to attend class; the student will need to take initiative to arrange that service in advance. Please find the COVID-19 Class Attendance policy.
Q: Do I need to bring my own health supplies and PPE?
A: You do need to bring face coverings.
You might also want to consider bringing other supplies such as:
- A digital thermometer (a thermometer will be provided to each new student, but you are welcome to bring the thermometer you prefer for your own personal use.)
- Hand sanitizer and disinfecting wipes (sanitizing cleaner is provided in the residence halls, and hand sanitizer will be available in public areas across campus, but consider bringing other items if you would like additional supplies for your residence hall room or your own personal use.)
Q: What will on-campus dining look like?
A: Plans for on-campus dining meet or exceed guidelines set by the CDC, the Pennsylvania Department of Education and the Pennsylvania Department of Health.
Aladdin Campus Dining’s plan to provide safe on-campus dining includes:
- Everyone entering the cafeteria should wash hands immediately prior to entry or use hand sanitizer at entry.
- Face coverings are required in the cafeteria unless individuals are seated at his or her table. This is in effect for everyone, even when face coverings are not required elsewhere on campus.
Q: What will residence hall living look like?
A: At CSU, we realize that safely living in community within your suite and residence hall is an important part of the university experience where lifelong friendships are made and valuable mentoring is done. Please see the “Residence Hall Life” section of the “Student Information” page for more.
Q: Can I travel home for the weekend?
A: It’s possible; please see the “Travel and Visitors” section of the “Student Information” page for recommendations on how to do so safely.
Q: What will I need to do if I have symptoms or a confirmed case of COVID-19?
A: Please see the “Care and Containment” section of the “Student Information” page. You’ll also want to have a health care plan in place that you’ve discussed with your parents and physician. (Please see the “Before you Arrive on Campus” section of the “Student Information” page for details).
Q: Will we still have athletics?
A: CSU participates in NCAA Division III Colonial States Athletic Conference, and we will be following NCAA and CSAC guidelines regarding athletic contests. Announcements regarding athletics will be posted at GoCSUDefenders.com.
Q: I have more questions. What is the plan for…?
A: Because of the unique, rapidly changing nature of COVID-19 and corresponding guidelines, plans can change at any time. Employees and students will follow the recommended guidelines from the CDC, the Pennsylvania Department of Health and the Pennsylvania Department of Education regarding health and safety. For additional questions and concerns not addressed here, please email CoronaResponse@ClarksSummitU.edu.
CSU Campus Community COVID-19 Update
Total confirmed COVID-19 cases within the CSU campus community for Fall 2021 semester (since August 2021): 11