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Florida Tech community: Please view the Florida Tech Safe website for important COVID-19 information and "Return to Learn" plan details.

Florida Tech SafeCOVID-19 News and Notices

Messages from the President

Prior announcements and messages from President McCay to the greater Florida Tech community may be referenced below.

Dear Florida Tech community,

Spring Semester 2021 is officially underway and our Florida Tech Safe: Return to Learn plan is in full effect. The precautionary measures we’ve taken—including remote learning for the first two weeks of the semester—are designed to keep our campus community healthy. It takes all of us working together to be successful.

This week, we know of 13 confirmed cases of COVID-19 among students—10 students isolating off-campus and three isolating on-campus. There are eight confirmed cases of COVID-19 reported among our employees and eight employees in precautionary quarantine. Safety protocols regarding contact tracing, sanitization, and associated steps are in place. We wish all a speedy recovery.

I’ve had my own personal experience with COVID-19 this week. Yesterday I was not feeling well, I got tested and received a positive test result. My doctor advised me to spend some time in the hospital as the quickest route to recovery and I am following his counsel. My symptoms are manageable and I hope to feel better soon as I work remotely and follow our protocols. We must all maintain our vigilance and honor our commitment to keep one another safe.

Remember—wear your face coverings, sanitize your hands, continue social distancing, and use the #CampusClear app daily to track your health.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Dear Florida Tech community,

I hope that you all had a safe and restful holiday break.

Spring Semester 2021 will begin Monday, Jan. 11, and as you know, we're taking additional precautionary measures to ensure a safe start to the term as classes will be delivered remotely. Considering the national rise in COVID-19 cases following the holiday season, the suspension of in-person classes for the first two weeks of the Spring Semester—except for lab courses—is prudent. All classes are expected to resume in-person on Monday, Jan. 25, with remote learning options continuing to be available as they were for the fall term.

We want to see you back on campus, and it is our responsibility to ensure that your "return to learn" is as safe as we can make it. We hope everyone made healthy decisions over the break regarding social distancing, but given the uncertainty inherent in that, this two-week adjustment will help us launch the semester in the best way possible.

Our custodial professionals have completed a "deep clean" of the campus while you were away. Many of the safety protocols you became familiar with in fall will resume this spring, and I strongly encourage you to continue them. Face coverings, social distancing, and washing of hands remain critical in the fight against spreading COVID-19. Use the #CampusClear app daily and monitor your personal health.

The entire Florida Tech team is ready to resume this academic year safely and securely. I'll continue to share weekly updates and you can check our Florida Tech Safe Web page any time for the latest information. Let's all work together, look after one another, and launch 2021 with hard work and high expectations.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Dear Florida Tech community,

Out of an abundance of caution given the nationwide increase in COVID-19 cases following the holiday season, Florida Tech is suspending in-person class instruction for the first two weeks of the Spring Semester (Jan. 11-24) except for lab courses. The semester will begin as scheduled Monday, Jan. 11, but classes will be remote learning only for the first two weeks, then resume in-person with remote learning options. Students should reach out to their lab instructors for additional guidance regarding in-person labs. All classes are expected to resume in-person on Monday, Jan. 25, with remote learning options continuing to be available as they were for the fall term.

To best protect the health and welfare of our student body, faculty and staff, we are taking other temporary precautionary measures as well:

  • Panther Dining Hall will be TO GO only and the Rathskeller will be delivery only as of Thursday, Jan. 7 until Monday, Jan. 25.
  • Orientation and Welcome Week will be virtual (visit www.fit.edu/orientation and Florida Tech Engage for details).
  • Clemente Center will be closed for all recreational activities until Monday, Jan. 25.
  • No in-person meetings (virtual only) for student clubs and organizations until Monday, Jan. 25.
  • Room reservations for group meetings are suspended until Monday, Jan. 25.
  • Campus tours are temporarily suspended and will resume Monday, Jan. 25.

For those traveling, Florida Tech advises following the U.S. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) recommendations and best practices.

Students attending main campus this semester will need to incorporate the following pre-arrival procedures into their plans:

  • Quarantine at home 10 days prior to arrival to Florida Tech.
  • Read and acknowledge the "Student Florida Tech Safe Commitment." This can be found in your Canvas account upon sign-in and must be acknowledged to continue using your Canvas account. We ask all students, including remote students, to complete this pledge.
  • Use the #CampusClear app daily upon returning.

If you believe you have been exposed to COVID-19 over the winter break, or if you feel ill, please stay at home and contact our COVID-19 case manager. Anyone with a confirmed case of COVID-19 must isolate for 10 days at home and should not return to campus until they are fully recovered.

Similar to the fall semester, Spring 2021 will align with our Florida Tech Safe Plan. Face coverings, physical distancing and daily wellness checks will remain in use and in place. In line with updated CDC guidelines, we have adjusted our quarantine policy:

  • Quarantine can end after Day 10 without testing and if no symptoms have been reported during daily monitoring.
  • Quarantine can end after Day 7 if a negative test is obtained and if no symptoms were reported during daily monitoring. The test must be completed within 48 hours before the time of planned quarantine discontinuation (e.g., in anticipation of testing delays), but quarantine cannot be discontinued earlier than seven days.
  • In both cases, continued symptom monitoring and masking through Day 14 are required.

The adherence by our students, faculty and staff to our Florida Tech Safe Plan, as well as the temporary measures outlined above, will enable us to have another successful semester.

Thank you for your continued cooperation and support and we wish you a safe return to campus.

Go Panthers!

Bino Campanini, SVP
Chair, Florida Tech Pandemic Response Team

Dear Florida Tech community,

We've made it to Winter Break and I'm so very proud of this university community. You've all worked hard and you've all finished well.

I want to thank everyone who served on our Pandemic Response Team since the start of summer. Your dedication in preparing the "Florida Tech Safe" plan and making sure it adapted to the changing circumstances was key to our success. I also want to thank everyone who was involved in taking care of students when they were in isolation and quarantine including Dining, Custodial Services, and Security. You truly assisted in going above and beyond to ensure our students' needs were met during these times.

I want to praise our students for their adherence to the protocols and holding each other accountable. Our numbers look very good compared to other institutions and I have received many notes of thanks from parents pleased with the diligence we demonstrated during these difficult circumstances.

And of course, I want to thank our outstanding faculty. Much was asked of you and you delivered. You are the spark of our Florida Tech engine and you are appreciated.

I wish you all a safe, healthy, and restful Winter Break. When we return in January, we will recommit ourselves to the strategies and plans that made this fall so successful. I'll see you then.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

We are nearing the end of a historic fall semester at Florida Tech. Our goal has been to provide you with a safe and academically rich semester, and you have all adapted gracefully, whether helping us sustain a healthy on-campus environment for living and learning, or being just as resilient by continuing your education remotely.

The adherence by our students, faculty, and staff to Florida Tech’s strict safety requirements and rigorous contact-tracing protocols helped us keep the incidence of Covid-19 extremely low (2.6%) during the fall 2020 semester. .

Building on that success as well as lessons learned along the way, we look forward to a successful and safe spring 2021 semester.

Spring Orientation 2021 will take place January 7-8, 2021. Classes will begin January 11, 2021 with face-to-face instruction and with the continued option of attending classes remotely.

The spring 2021 academic calendar was specially configured to help reduce the threat of Covid-19 while promoting academic success. To minimize community health risks associated with extended travel, Florida Tech has eliminated the conventional spring break from the spring 2021 calendar.

  • Spring Orientation - January 7-8
  • Spring Semester - January 11 to April 30
  • Study Days - April 22-23
  • Final Exams - April 26-30

Are Any Changes Planned for Spring 2021?

During the spring 2021 semester, Florida Tech will continue with the hybrid face-to-face with remote option with class scheduling that supports physical distancing requirements in classrooms.

Like the fall 2020 semester, spring 2021 will align with our Florida Tech Safe Plan. Face coverings, physical distancing and daily wellness checks will remain in place.

In line with recent CDC guidelines we have adjusted our quarantine policy:

  • Quarantine can end after Day 10 without testing and if no symptoms have been reported during daily monitoring.
  • Quarantine can end after Day 7 if a negative test is obtained and if no symptoms were reported during daily monitoring. The test must be completed within 48 hours before the time of planned quarantine discontinuation (e.g., in anticipation of testing delays), but quarantine cannot be discontinued earlier than 7 days.
  • In both cases, continued symptom monitoring and masking through Day 14 must be met.

University travel remains suspended for Florida Tech employees for all nonessential university-funded or sponsored travel as well as for all student clubs or groups.

For all other travel, Florida Tech recommendations are based upon U.S. Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) recommendations and best practices. To help keep the university community safe, we encourage all students, staff and faculty to follow these guidelines.

While you are away; follow the Florida Tech Safe Big 3:

  1. Face Coverings
  2. Social Distancing
  3. Handwashing

And continue to be aware of CDC guidelines to help prevent becoming infected with COVID-19:

  • Remember that 15 minutes of exposure to someone with COVID-19 within a 24-hour period increases the chance of infection.
  • Give careful consideration to indoor gatherings or outdoor gatherings with large groups.
  • Avoid gatherings with people outside your usual circle when possible.

Students living on campus in the spring will need to incorporate the following pre-arrival procedures into their plans.

  • Quarantine at home 10 days prior to arrival to Florida Tech.
  • Read and acknowledge the “Student Florida Tech Safe Commitment”. This commitment can be found in your Canvas account upon sign-in and must be acknowledged to continue using your Canvas account. We are asking all students including remote students to complete this pledge.
  • Use the #CampusClear app daily upon returning.

If you believe you have been exposed to Covid-19 over the winter break, or if you feel ill, please stay at home and contact our COVID-19 case manager.

Anyone with a confirmed case of COVID-19 will need to isolate for 10 days at home and should not return to campus until they are fully recovered.

It is important that we are mindful of our fellow Panthers and that we all take the appropriate action before returning to campus to ensure a safe start to the semester.

Thank you for your continued cooperation and support of our Florida Tech Safe Plan and we wish you and your families a happy, healthy and safe holiday period.

Go Panthers!

Bino Campanini, SVP
Chair, Florida Tech Pandemic Response Team

Dear Florida Tech community,

I hope everyone had a safe and relaxing Thanksgiving break last week.

The end of the fall semester is in sight and I want to thank you for your diligence as we’ve all followed the “Florida Tech Safe” plan over these past months. Your commitment has made the difference and allowed us all to teach and learn.

Concerning COVID-19 cases over the past two-week period, we know of nine new, confirmed cases among students—six students isolating off-campus and three isolating on-campus. Also during the past two weeks, there are five new, confirmed cases of COVID-19 reported among our employees and one employee in precautionary quarantine. Safety protocols regarding contact tracing, sanitization, and associated steps are in place. We wish all a swift return to full health.

Remember—wear your face coverings, sanitize your hands, continue social distancing, and use the #CampusClear app daily to track your health.

As we march toward Virtual Commencement next Friday and the winter break to follow, I wish you all a happy and healthy holiday season. I look forward to seeing you in January—virtually or in person. Stay safe and be well.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Dear Florida Tech community,

The home stretch of the fall semester is upon us and everyone's diligence will soon be rewarded with a successful completion to the term.

I'm pleased to report that we are doing far better this week than previous weeks, with a dramatic decrease in COVID-19 cases. We know of 11 new, confirmed cases among students—nine students isolating off-campus and two isolating on-campus. There is one new, confirmed case of COVID-19 reported among our employees and eight employees in precautionary quarantine. All safety protocols regarding contact tracing, sanitization, and associated steps are in place. We wish a speedy recovery to all.

We've made it to Thanksgiving break next week. Please remember that to better protect the health and safety of everyone, students choosing to leave campus for the holiday will have the option of completing the remainder of the semester (including final exams) remotely. If you are traveling for Thanksgiving, consider taking advantage of this option.

Wear your face coverings, sanitize your hands, continue social distancing, and use the #CampusClear app daily to track your health. And enjoy Thanksgiving break.

My best to you and your family. Be safe and be well. I'll update you again Dec. 4.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Dear Florida Tech community,

As we head into fall, your energy and attention are likely focused on upcoming finals, end-of-semester duties and maybe your aunt’s famous apple pie, warm and ready for the Thanksgiving table.

I’m asking you to think about something else: perspective.

With another 33 new, confirmed cases of COVID-19 among students – 15 isolating off-campus and 18 isolating on-campus – and two new, confirmed cases reported among our employees, we must understand the value of looking beyond the short term. Yes, it may have felt worth it to head to that crowded party or bar, or to take your mask off for a dose of ‘how-it-used-to-be’ freedom.

Yet think about what you risk for that fleeting bit of enjoyment. Days or weeks in isolation? Bringing illness – or worse – to yourself, your colleagues, your friends, your family? Those are things that will reverberate in your life and the lives of others for far longer than a night amid the crowds.

Acting with that sort of perspective in mind – that’s taking the long view, and we all need that right now.

I know you are capable of consistently wearing a face covering, keeping socially distant, washing your hands regularly and entering your daily status in the #CampusClear app. I know you know what the right decisions are, the right actions. I know this because for much of this unique and challenging semester, our COVID cases reflected it. But in five of the last six weeks, we’ve had double-digit increases – with this week brining the largest increase yet.

It’s time to turn the arrow in the other direction.

Let’s do what’s right, and what’s safe, with renewed vigor. Let’s think and act beyond the moment, beyond short-term desire. Let’s be guided by a shared goal of long-term success. You can do it, Panthers.

Earlier, I mentioned Thanksgiving. To better protect the health and safety of all, students choosing to leave campus for the holiday will have the option of completing the remainder of the semester (including final exams) remotely. If you are traveling for Thanksgiving, I encourage you to plan ahead and take advantage of this option.

See you next week.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Dear Florida Tech community,

The fall semester is 12 weeks old and I'm pleased with the hard work, dedication, and care that our students, faculty, and staff are demonstrating during these difficult times. However, there's still much work to do as we all protect against the spread of COVID-19.

This week, we know of 18 new, confirmed cases of COVID-19 among students—eight students isolating off-campus and 10 isolating on-campus. All safety protocols regarding contact tracing, sanitization, and associated steps are in place. There are three new, confirmed cases of COVID-19 reported among our employees and five employees in precautionary quarantine. We hope all get well soon.

It's so easy to let your guard down—taking additional care must remain our mantra. Remember to wear your face coverings, sanitize your hands, and continue social distancing. Students report that when they go off-campus and into the community, they see people not following best practices. I remind you that if an off-campus event or activity seems risky, don't do it. It's not worth it.

Please use the #CampusClear app daily to track your health.

It's time to dig deep and finish well. We can do this, together.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Dear Florida Tech community,

We have reached this semester's 11-week mark and must maintain our focus with all COVID-19-related health and safety precautions.

This week, we know of six new, confirmed cases of COVID-19 among students—four students isolating off-campus and two isolating on-campus. All safety protocols regarding contact tracing, sanitization, and associated steps are in place. There is one new, confirmed case of COVID-19 reported among our employees and one employee in precautionary quarantine. We wish all those affected a rapid return to full health.

Florida Tech is doing well overall and must keep it up. Other schools in Florida are experiencing spikes, and some have been forced to transition to completely remote courses for the remainder of the semester. Our university is not in that position—let's work hard to keep it that way.

With Halloween this weekend, I want to again remind everyone about vigilance concerning off-campus activities. Remember to wear your face coverings, sanitize your hands, and continue social distancing. If an event or activity seems risky, don't do it. No one wants to be the person who brought COVID-19 back to campus classmates, colleagues, and friends.

Remember to use the #CampusClear app daily to track your health.

We are so close to a successful conclusion to this fall semester. Let's all stay focused on safety.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Dear Florida Tech community,

Ten weeks into the fall semester and our end goal—a safe and productive conclusion to the academic term—is within sight.

We know of 14 new, confirmed cases of COVID-19 among students this week—eight students isolating off-campus and six isolating on-campus. We continue exercising our safety protocols regarding contact tracing, sanitization, and related steps. We wish all a speedy recovery.

There are no new cases of COVID-19 reported among faculty and staff.

Our Student Life team believes our positive cases are originating from off-campus activities. Students are expressing concern about the lack of protocols in restaurants and bars in the surrounding area. While Florida Tech cannot control off-campus interactions, I can remind you that not following health and safety protocols when in the larger community can bring COVID-19 back to the university. Remember to wear your face coverings, sanitize your hands, and continue social distancing. Evaluate your surroundings, and if an off-campus activity seems risky, don’t do it. It’s not worth it.

I want us all to stay as healthy and safe as we can. Keep using the #CampusClear app daily to track your health.

Your personal judgment matters and makes all the difference. We’ll get through this, but we cannot let our guard down.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Dear Florida Tech community,

It’s the nine-week mark for fall semester and we cannot let our guard down.

We are aware of 18 new, confirmed COVID-19 cases among students since I wrote to you last Friday. Student Life reports 13 students are off-campus and five are in isolation on campus. Our safety protocols are in place regarding contact tracing, sanitization, and related steps. There is one new, confirmed case among employees and three staff members are in precautionary quarantine. We wish all a quick return to full health.

Custodial services reports that hand sanitizer use is on the rise again—a good sign. Let’s keep that going.

We’ve held flu shot clinics for our students, but I want to remind faculty and staff that they may take advantage of flu shots from our Holzer Health Center as well. A limited supply is currently available—please make an appointment with the Health Center by calling (321) 674-8078. This will be billed through insurance or at a self-pay rate of $30.

We all know what we must do—wash our hands, continue social distancing, and wear our face coverings. Please use the #CampusClear app daily to track your personal health.

Stay safe. Stay healthy. Talk to you next week.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Dear Florida Tech community,

We're eight weeks into the semester and cannot lose sight of our goal—a safe and healthy completion of the fall term for all members of our university community.

This week we are aware of 10 new confirmed cases of COVID-19 among students, with six isolating on campus and four isolating off campus. This increase in cases highlights the continuing need to limit off-campus exposure that could spread the virus when returning to campus. We must be vigilant. Please remember to follow the safety protocols wherever you are.

Meanwhile, we have one employee who has tested positive and two employees in precautionary quarantine. We wish everyone affected a speedy recovery.

Wash your hands, continue social distancing, and wear your face coverings—and please use the #CampusClear app daily to track your personal health. We must maintain our diligence concerning health-saving precautions that we've all worked hard to employ.

I'll have an update for you next Friday.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

 

Dear Florida Tech community,

I hope everyone is doing well and enjoying this small sampling of fall weather. It's the seventh week of the semester, almost to midterm, and our "Florida Tech Safe" COVID-19 plans remain in full effect.

You've likely seen the additional signage across campus, including the oversized banner on the front of the Denius Student Center that reminds us all of "face coverings, social distancing, and hand washing." While we are doing OK, I think we could be doing better.

Custodial services reports that usage of the more than 340 hand sanitization stations we installed across campus is down by an estimated 50 percent. Is that because we are becoming complacent regarding hand washing? I hope not, and I'm asking you to do your part to ensure that's not the case. Please sanitize your hands frequently and utilize these stations on a regular basis.

This week the university is aware of four new confirmed cases of COVID-19 among students, with two isolating on campus and two isolating off campus. We wish these students a swift return to full health. Meanwhile, we have no new cases to report among faculty and staff, with one employee in precautionary quarantine.

Please wash your hands, continue social distancing, and wear your face coverings. Use the #CampusClear app every day to track your personal health.

Talk again next week.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Dear Florida Tech community,

We've made it to the sixth week of the semester with excellent news to report. I'm pleased to share with you that we are aware of no new confirmed cases of COVID-19 this week among students, faculty, or staff. We have one employee in new precautionary quarantine. I'm proud of our campus community and everyone's continued commitment to the "Florida Tech Safe" plans we've implemented. So let's keep up the good work.

Staying healthy is a personal responsibility with consequences for all of us. With that in mind, let's remember that flu season is fast approaching. Florida Tech will sponsor a free flu shot clinic for students from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. Thursday, Oct. 1 in the SUB Café on the first floor of the Denius Student Center. Each flu shot comes with a free Chick-fil-A lunch and a chance to win a $50 gift card. Students must bring their student IDs and insurance cards to the clinic. Meanwhile, in coming days, flu shots will be available for faculty and staff by appointment in the Holzer Health Center.

Let's keep doing well. Remember to wash your hands, continue social distancing, and wear your face coverings. Use the #CampusClear app every day to track our personal health.

I'll update you again next week.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Dear Florida Tech community,

I am writing to advise you of modifications that are necessary for the Spring 2021 Academic Calendar.

Health and safety of our university community continue to be our priorities. Given the COVID-19 pandemic, the university is removing Spring Break from the calendar for this academic year and adjusting the spring schedule resulting in an earlier graduation date for students. This will promote community health by reducing spring travel while also maximizing instructional time. The following date adjustments will result:

Spring 2021 Academic Calendar (Revised)

Last Day of Classes 4/21/2021
Study Days 4/22-23/2021
Final Examinations 4/26-30/2021
Commencement 5/1/2021

Thank you for your collaboration and understanding as we all work together to navigate these challenging times.

Sincerely,

Marco Carvalho, Ph.D.
Executive Vice President & Provost

Dear Florida Tech community,

Fall semester is five weeks old and we persevere. The diligence of our students, faculty and staff continues to serve us well as a campus community. Let’s not become complacent. We’ve all worked too hard to get this far.

This week there are no new confirmed cases of COVID-19 among employees. We know of two new student cases. Those students are in self-isolation off campus with protocols in place. We send them best wishes for a speedy recovery.

Please wash your hands, continue social distancing and remember to wear your face coverings. Let’s all continue using the #CampusClear app every day to track our personal health.

We’ve got this, together.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Dear Florida Tech community,

We've made it four weeks into the fall semester and things are going relatively well. I hope everyone celebrated the Labor Day holiday weekend responsibly. Remember our mantra: wear face coverings, social distance and wash your hands.

You must also keep close tabs on your personal health. The #CampusClear app allows for daily self-screening so our students may easily track their health. It's also available for faculty and staff. Please use the #CampusClear app every day.

This week I'm happy to report that we are aware of no new confirmed cases of COVID-19 among faculty and staff. I'm less happy to say we do know of three new confirmed student cases. Those students are in self-isolation off campus with all safety measures being exercised. We wish them well.

Let's all stay well—we must. We only do that by following the safety plan. We're all counting on each other! Thank you for your continued diligence.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Dear Florida Tech community,

The fall semester is three weeks old and everyone is working hard. I particularly appreciate an old adage that reflects this moment in history: “I am a great believer in luck. The harder I work the more luck I seem to have.” To be lucky and keep COVID-19 in check on our campus we must continue our hard work.

This means wearing our face coverings, social distancing and washing our hands. It also means vigilance concerning our personal health. Last month we unveiled #CampusClear, a daily self-screening app for our students to use to easily track their health. We are deploying this app for our faculty and staff today, as a convenient alternative to the daily self-assessment they now complete on the Web.

This week I’m relieved to report that we are aware of no new confirmed cases of COVID-19 among faculty and staff. However, we do know of two new confirmed student cases. Those students are in self-isolation off campus with all safety measures being exercised. We wish them speedy recoveries.

So let’s make our own luck, together. Stay safe, stay healthy and we will persevere.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Dear Florida Tech community,

The second week of fall classes is coming to a close. I’ve been impressed with the discipline exhibited by our students, faculty and staff regarding our "Florida Tech Safe: Return to Learn" safety protocols. Adherence to these protocols is helping us to keep COVID-19 in check in our university community—but complacency remains our biggest threat.

We must continue our diligence regarding the safety steps we’ve implemented. Social distancing, wearing face coverings and washing hands are the three biggest components of staying healthy. Doing our part keeps us—and our classmates, colleagues and friends—safe. No one wants an outbreak. It’s our shared responsibility to keep that from happening.

This week we are aware of no new confirmed cases among faculty and staff. We know of one new confirmed student case, and that student is in self-isolation on campus with all safety measures being exercised. We wish this student a quick return to full health.

Let’s keep going. Let’s keep working hard. Let’s keep following the steps. We’ll talk again soon.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

 

Dear Florida Tech community,

The new academic year is underway, and I’m cautiously able to report that so far, we’re doing well. Why? Because our university community continues to take COVID-19 seriously, but we cannot let our guard down and must maintain our discipline, especially if venturing off campus.

Our fall classes are in-person with remote options—maximizing safety and flexibility for our students and giving them as much choice in the process as we can offer. Our “Florida Tech Safe” plan prioritizes student, faculty and staff health while also allowing us to deal with evolving circumstances. If something changes, we are ready.

We take the health and safety of all of our students, faculty and staff very seriously—I ask you to continue to do so as well. I want to thank all of you for what you’ve done and continue to do because all of us must do our part.

This week we are aware of three confirmed student cases, all off-campus and in self-isolation off-campus. We know of one new employee case, and as the employee has not been on campus in more than a month, there is no apparent risk to the university community. We wish all a speedy recovery.

Let’s remain serious about our safety steps and follow the plan. That is how we will maximize the health of everyone on campus this fall. Remember social distancing, hand-washing and face coverings. Keep it up—and thank you again. We will persevere.

I’ll talk with you again soon.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Dear Florida Tech community,

Classes start Monday, and it’s time to get this academic year moving. Months of preparation have led to this moment. I know there is a mix of nervousness and excitement as we all buckle down and get to work.

Our “Florida Tech Safe: Return to Learn” plan is in place—we must all follow it. Social distancing, face coverings, and good handwashing habits are key. We must honor our commitments to each other and abide by these and other steps designed to keep the campus community healthy.

Finally this week, I can report that we are aware of no new faculty or staff COVID-19 cases and one student case. All protocols—including isolation/quarantine and notification—have been exercised in that case and we wish a speedy return to good health.

We’re ready. Here we go. Thank you and I will continue to keep you informed as we all work together to foster a safe and healthy fall semester.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Dear Florida Tech community,

After months of planning and preparation, the academic year is upon us. New students are moving in this weekend with returning students arriving next week.

The realities of the COVID-19 pandemic have necessitated a range of adjustments and accommodations to maximize safety and instructional flexibility. Our entire university community—faculty, staff, students, and parents—have pulled together to meet this "new normal" with an attitude of collaboration and a spirit of partnership, keeping safety as the highest priority. I'm confident we're well-prepared for face-to-face instruction to resume Aug. 17.

This week the Pandemic Response Team, led by Senior Vice President of Student Life and Alumni Affairs Bino Campanini, hosted a livestream outlining our “Florida Tech Safe: Return to Learn” plan with team members highlighting key aspects designed to preserve everyone's health. I commend the hard work of all who have built and are executing this plan. If you didn't see the presentation, you may view it here: https://youtu.be/oqpvRxeFgOE.

Finally this week, I can report that we are aware of no new student, faculty, or staff COVID-19 cases within our university community. Let's all continue following social distancing measures, face covering recommendations, handwashing protocols, and other safety guidelines. Thank you and I will continue to keep you informed.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Dear Florida Tech Community,

Students will start moving onto campus in the coming days as we near the Aug. 17 start of classes. Their presence will be a reminder to all of us at Florida Tech of the momentous and no doubt well-researched decisions families make to embark on the journey of higher education. For many parents, this may be the first time their children are truly on their own – and we recognize and respect how exciting, frightening and important this new phase is.

So when parents speak, we eagerly listen.

Recently, the 2020-21 Florida Tech Parents Leadership Council, comprised of parents representing current students and recent graduates, offered, Why Florida Tech: An Open Letter. I applaud this thoughtful and thorough examination of Florida Tech’s unique strengths and innovative approach to the COVID-19 situation and thank Council members for taking the time to understand this challenging situation with which we are all dealing. Their insights are particularly welcome and appreciated as we kick off the fall semester.

“In light of current events, you may be thinking about how college this Fall will be different and how your student will be kept safe on campus,” they wrote. “We believe that Florida Tech is very well positioned to provide both a safe environment and the highest quality education for its students. We feel that this is the right place for our children, and for yours.”

The letter highlighted several reasons why we are poised to succeed, including our ability as a smaller school to be nimble in the face of pandemic challenges and how our early recognition of the pandemic’s looming impact allowed us to respond in unique and resonant ways, from virtual commencement to appropriate precautionary measures. The letter concluded, “We feel confident that our children are in a safe, supportive environment at Florida Tech; a place where they can learn and grow in spite of, and because of, the challenges we all face in the world today.”

As part of the process illuminated in the Council letter, we continue to offer weekly updates on COVID-19 within our university community. This week we are aware of two new cases of COVID-19 – one student living off-campus and one employee. All safety protocols are being utilized. We wish both a quick return to full health and remind our Panther family to continue to practice the proper pandemic protocols, including wearing face coverings, following social distancing measures, frequently washing hands and abiding by other relevant CDC health guidelines.

Please continue monitoring this page for the latest information. I will keep you updated, as well.

Thank you.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Dear Florida Tech community,

The fall semester is quickly approaching, and there are a few items for which I want to make sure you have the latest information.

First, in addition to all of the day-to-day challenges and unprecedented situations we all are dealing with related to COVID-19, there is also now media speculation regarding which colleges and universities will survive financially due to the pandemic. One media account predicts Florida Tech will “perish.” This is false. I’ve been open and honest with you about our efforts to economize while maximizing the value of our core educational mission. We’ve made significant progress and will continue to do so. Even as the world struggles, I have great confidence in our future.

Second, most of our preparations for a return to face-to-face instruction Aug. 17 are now complete. We have reorganized and refreshed our coronavirus Web pages with new information for the fall semester, including an overview video of the “Florida Tech Safe: Return to Learn” plan that I hope you will find useful. We’ll continue adding frequently asked questions and other pertinent information to these pages in the days to come.

Finally, I wanted to report that we are aware of two new cases of COVID-19 within our university community this week—one student living off-campus and one employee. All safety protocols are being exercised. We wish both a quick return to full health. Meanwhile, let’s all continue following social distancing measures, face covering recommendations, handwashing protocols, and other relevant CDC health guidelines.

Thank you and I will continue to keep you informed.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Dear Florida Tech community,

I am reaching out to share our weekly update regarding the university’s COVID-19 planning and the “Florida Tech Safe: Return to Learn” efforts.

It remains a busy time of preparation. We are moving forward with our plans for a return to face-to-face instruction when fall semester classes begin Aug. 17, but doing so in a way that maximizes safety and flexibility. Remote options will be available for all students who need them. In our ongoing efforts to keep everyone informed, I hope you will take a few moments to review the video portion of this message. We’ll have more video information in the coming days as well.

I am pleased to report that, this week, we are unaware of any new, confirmed cases of COVID-19 among Florida Tech faculty, staff, or students. It remains imperative that we all continue following social distancing measures, face covering recommendations, and all CDC health guidelines.

Please continue monitoring the coronavirus website for new information. I will keep you updated as well.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Dear Florida Tech community,

I am writing to you as part of my continuing commitment to keep everyone informed regarding our COVID-19 efforts and the “Florida Tech Safe: Return to Learn” plan.

Our plan remains to resume face-to-face instruction with the start of the fall semester Aug. 17, and we continue monitoring the evolving coronavirus situation very carefully. Remote learning options will be available to students as necessary. Meanwhile, a range of new health and safety steps have been taken across campus, including the addition of transparent plastic shields in high traffic areas, new hand sanitization stations, revised building protocols to assist in social distancing, additional safety signage, and so much more.

We are aware of three additional COVID-19 cases within the university community since I last updated you—one employee and two students. The employee has not been on campus since March and both student cases are off-campus as well. We wish all three a speedy recovery.

Please continue following social distancing measures, face covering recommendations, and all CDC health guidelines. Also continue monitoring this page for information. I will keep you updated, too.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Dear Florida Tech community,

I wanted to update you concerning our COVID-19 Fall preparations. Our academic instruction plan continues to be adjusted to ensure flexibility as we resume face-to-face instruction Aug. 17. I remain confident that all necessary steps are being taken to maximize the health and safety of all students, faculty, and staff. In fact, the university has purchased 10,000 reusable face coverings that arrived yesterday and will be distributed to employees as well as students arriving this fall.

We are now aware of a total of four confirmed COVID-19 cases within the university community—two staff members and two students. At this time, the cases appear unrelated, and campus safety protocols are being followed. We hope all four will return to full health soon.

I urge everyone to continue following social distancing measures, face covering recommendations, and all CDC health guidelines. Please continue monitoring this page for updates and additional information. I will keep you informed as well.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Dear Florida Tech community,

Florida Tech was informed over the weekend that a staff member has tested positive for COVID-19. The staff member experienced flu-like symptoms and is recovering well, isolated at home. We wish this member of our Florida Tech family a full and speedy recovery.

As Florida Tech has no face-to-face instruction this summer, student exposure in this case is not an anticipated issue. Employee exposure is also minimal, given that the university is still operating under a reduced on-campus staffing plan. However, The Brevard County Health Department is aware, contact tracing is underway and the staff member’s workspace has undergone additional sanitization protocols.

In moments like these, the university will protect the privacy rights of individuals while also ensuring the health of our broader community. We realize that this kind of news can create concerns and anxiety, and we will continue to communicate when necessary while also remaining diligent in our ongoing consultation with health officials. This is a sober signal of how widely the impact of this illness continues to be felt, and also indicates how access to testing has increased.

It is critically important that we all continue to follow recommended social distancing measures, face covering recommendations and all CDC protocols while being sure to practice good public health hygiene, including washing hands as frequently as possible.

Please continue to monitor this page for updates and additional information.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Dear Florida Tech community,

Our COVID-19 Pandemic Response Team has been working diligently for months to assess and address what steps Florida Tech should implement to ensure a safe return to face to face instruction for Fall Semester. I am pleased to report that the team has drafted a comprehensive plan that prioritizes student, faculty, and staff health while also maintaining the flexibility that will be required to deal with evolving circumstances.

The university is launching a plan called Florida Tech Safe to help keep everyone healthy. Some of the steps we are taking:

  • Establishing class attendance caps so that we don’t exceed 50% of building capacity
  • Wearing face coverings in places where social distancing cannot be observed
  • Implementing a one student/one bedroom policy for campus housing so students will have more privacy and more personal space and will not have to share a room, unless otherwise requested
  • Health screenings for employees
  • Increasing safety cleanings across all campus facilities
  • Limiting public access to campus and making some areas student-only
  • Setting up classes so that students can continue to attend remotely if the situation calls for it

These are just some of the actions we are taking. For additional information, please review the Florida Tech Safe: Return to Learn Plan.

We take the health and safety of all of our students, faculty, and staff very seriously, and our plans will remain flexible, depending on the situation this fall. Stay safe, and we look forward to seeing you in August.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Dear Florida Tech community,

This era of the COVID-19 pandemic has been a difficult time for us all. However, I have been most impressed with how our students, faculty, and staff continue to weather this situation. All have proven their tenacity, dedication, and willingness to tackle challenges even under unusual circumstances. Fortunately, our Florida Tech family remains healthy and hard working.

While closely monitoring and actively addressing the realities of the moment, Florida Tech is also focused on the future. We have already shared that Summer classes will be conducted virtually, but we have also been carefully studying and planning for the Fall. I am pleased to announce that for Fall 2020, Florida Tech plans to resume normal operations Aug. 10 when faculty report and students begin moving into residence halls. Face to face classes will begin Aug. 17, as reflected in the academic calendar.

Now “normal operations” will be a new normal, to be sure. Florida Tech will continue with extra sanitization steps, modified social distancing, and other measures necessary to ensure the safety of our students, faculty, and staff. We will be flexible as the situation requires. The health of all remains a top priority.

Again, thank you for your hard work and dedication during these challenging times. Together, we will persevere.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Florida Tech has canceled all 2020 summer camps.

The cancellations are for camps operated by Florida Tech, including in athletics, academics and art, as well as camps hosted at Florida Tech. Camps were scheduled to begin June 1 and continue through July 31.

With the challenges created by the coronavirus pandemic unlikely to fully recede by summer, and needing to ensure the safety and health of camp participants and operators, the university made the difficult decision to cancel.

Inquiries about refunds and other summer camp questions may be sent to the university’s Conference Services Bureau at conference@fit.edu. Please include the name of the camp and of the attendee(s) in the email.

To our Florida Tech Students and Families:

In ways large and small, the coronavirus pandemic has touched us all. It has created deep and difficult challenges. But it has also allowed us as individuals and as organizations to reach out, to help and support, to show grace and compassion.

I am pleased to announce that Florida Tech will be granting eligible students credits for housing and meal plans for up to the last seven weeks of the Spring 2020 academic term.

On March 23, when face-to-face classes would have typically resumed but instead were replaced with fully online instruction, many students opted to stay home. Some returned for a week or two and then left. Students who had been living on campus for the Spring 2020 term will receive a housing credit for the number of weeks they were away – up to the final seven weeks of the term.

Additionally, students with meal plans who lived on or off campus will receive credits based on the same time frame.

These Spring 2020 room and board credits will be automatically applied to students’ accounts upon their completion of the application form available here and on Florida Tech’s page. We will process those applications and expect to have credits applied to students’ accounts in June.

For most students, the credits will go toward offsetting costs associated with the Summer 2020 and Fall 2020 academic terms. Those eligible students graduating in Spring 2020 or Summer 2020 will have the credits applied to any balance due on their accounts with any remaining credit funds being issued directly to them as refunds.

While we understand that the financial impact of the coronavirus is just one of many hurdles the pandemic has placed before us, we hope our response reflects how important it is to all of us that Florida Tech continues to support its students and their families. We are in this together, proud to be Florida Tech Panthers.

Thank you.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Dear Students and Parents,

I hope this message finds you in good health and positive spirits despite the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Please know that your university is doing everything it can to reduce and when possible, reverse, the burden this crisis has placed on us all.

You may already be aware that Florida Tech recently took steps to modify our policy regarding FlexCredits for the benefit of returning students. After careful review of state regulations regarding this matter, Florida Tech has arranged for all unused FlexCredits invested in Spring 2020 meals plans to roll forward, allowing returning, registered students who sign up for meal plans to use them in the summer or fall.

I do not present this accommodation as a panacea, but I sincerely hope it provides some much-needed financial relief for you and your family during these uncertain and difficult times. I know a little help can go a long way.

Please remember that we continue to update our Coronavirus FAQs as developments warrant. Together, we will persevere. I wish you all the best as you complete the academic year.

Sincerely,

Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Dear Students and Parents,

I hope this message finds you in good health and positive spirits despite the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. Please know that your university is doing everything it can to reduce and when possible, reverse, the burden this crisis has placed on us all.

You may already be aware that Florida Tech recently took steps to modify our policy regarding FlexCredits for the benefit of returning students. After careful review of state regulations regarding this matter, Florida Tech has arranged for all unused FlexCredits invested in Spring 2020 meals plans to roll forward, allowing returning, registered students who sign up for meal plans to use them in the summer or fall.

I do not present this accommodation as a panacea, but I sincerely hope it provides some much-needed financial relief for you and your family during these uncertain and difficult times. I know a little help can go a long way.

Please remember that we continue to update our Coronavirus FAQs as developments warrant. Together, we will persevere. I wish you all the best as you complete the academic year.

Sincerely,

Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President

Dear Florida Tech community,

Gov. Ron DeSantis is issuing an order for Floridians to stay at home for the next 30 days and only leave their homes for essential services. This order takes effect at 12:01 a.m. Friday, April 3.

Florida Tech continues to house some students in the residence halls and will continue to support these students at their campus homes throughout the governor’s “safer at home” order. This means essential Florida Tech employees, as identified by their supervisors, will continue to report to work during this period to support the university’s essential functions.

Other university employees will telecommute during this period, and most support offices will remain open “virtually.” Students or parents who have questions or concerns should continue to email or call the appropriate offices to have their questions answered.

Maintaining the health and safety of our university community remains our top priority during these unprecedented times. Thank you for your patience, support and cooperation.

Stay well,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

Dear University Community,

I am writing to update you concerning our coronavirus plans and share with you the latest information regarding modifications to university activities. Our leadership is working daily to address a range of complicated issues and make the best decisions possible to preserve health and safety while also delivering on our educational mission. Our online FAQ has many answers you may wish to review.

As you are aware, Florida Tech has suspended campus face-to-face instruction for the remainder of the Spring semester. There are no classes this week, and students are not required to return to campus at this time. However, residence halls remain open.

As a reminder, the university shifts to online classes starting Monday, March 23. Students, please look for instructions from your professors on how classes will be conducted. Carefully monitor your university email as well as Canvas for these and other announcements. If you have specific questions, email or call your professor.

Additionally, Spring 2020 Commencement and ROTC commissioning exercises are now cancelled. We had hoped to conduct reconfigured ceremonies for graduating students with no in-person audience, but more recent federal guidance limiting public gatherings makes this accommodation unworkable. The cancellation will not impact students graduating and receiving their diplomas by mail if they meet all graduation requirements. Graduating students who wish to march in a future Commencement ceremony will be accommodated. We will announce details at a later date.

While students are encouraged to engage in social distancing, campus resources like the Evans Library and Panther Dining Hall remain open. However, the Clemente Center and its fitness center will suspend operations beginning at 6 p.m. Friday, March 20.

Working together, we will overcome these challenging circumstances that we all face. We will continue to update you as new information becomes available. Thank you.

Sincerely,

Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President & CEO

To our Campus Community:

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis has issued an executive order that we wanted to let you know about, as it may have an impact here at Florida Tech.

The order, which took effect March 24, mandates that all people who fly to Florida from New York, New Jersey or Connecticut – areas he said have a “substantial community spread” of coronavirus – must isolate or quarantine for 14 days from the time they enter the state or the duration of their presence in Florida, whichever is shorter.

Violating this order is a criminal offense and could result in second-degree misdemeanor charges punishable by up to 60 days in jail, a fine of up to $500, or both.

If you are a campus resident and have visited or recently returned from any of these three states, please let us know that you are self-isolating so we can offer you the appropriate support and confirm you are getting the supplies and attention you need. You can do that by filling out this form.

These are unique and challenging times we are living inIt takes all of us working together to best ensure the health and safety of our university family. Thank you for doing your part.

Sincerely,

Bino Campanini
Senior Vice President, Student Life & Alumni Affairs

 

Dear Florida Tech Community,

America—and the world—continue to deal with the effects of the coronavirus pandemic. To say that it has temporarily transformed our society is an understatement. Regardless, we all persevere in the face of adversity, each of us making the best decisions we can to preserve health and ensure safety.

As we begin this week, I am pleased to report that Florida Tech has transitioned from face to face instruction to online learning for the remainder of the Spring Semester. We learned a great deal the first day, and as questions or issues arise, we are doing our best to quickly address them.

I want to thank our students and their parents for their patience in this process and encourage our students to continue taking their learning seriously while remaining in close contact with their professors. If you have a question or a concern, ask it. I also want to express my deepest gratitude to our faculty, buoyed by our excellent instructional technology personnel, who have made this possible. A great many extra hours of effort and energy have been invested to make this online transition work—and this investment will continue for the remainder of the term. 

Meanwhile, as the coronavirus situation continues to evolve, university leadership is assessing and addressing daily the impact on our Florida Tech community. We will continue to keep you updated and encourage you to monitor our coronavirus information page on the Web.

No one knows what news tomorrow will bring, but I suggest to you, and believe myself, that uncertainty and fear do not define us. Resilience, paired with prudent decision-making, are key in these difficult times. Following the best guidance of our health officials, supporting one another, and maintaining our calm, will help us to overcome this invisible threat. We are all in this together.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President

Dear Florida Tech Community,

As we continue to review and assess the coronavirus situation and its impact on Florida Tech, we have decided to immediately suspend campus face-to-face instruction for the remainder of the Spring term. There are no classes the week of March 16, and students are not required to return to campus at this time. The university will shift to online classes starting Monday, March 23.

Campus events are postponed for the remainder of the Spring 2020 term, with the exception of prospective student tours and commencement. Please contact event organizers for additional details.

Florida Tech Online programs and Virtual Education Center courses will continue normal operations. Florida Tech's Education Centers’ face-to-face classes will begin online synchronous instruction via Zoom technology on Monday, March 16. 

Faculty and staff are expected to return to work Monday, March 16.

For those students who opt to return or who have remained on campus, the full complement of university accommodations and services will be available. These students are asked to check in here.

For students, faculty and staff, there are several matters that require your careful attention upon returning. Any student or other member of the university community who has traveled to one of the CDC-identified Level 3 countries within the last two weeks (as of now these countries are Iran, Italy, China and South Korea) should self-quarantine for 14 days, even if symptoms are not presenting.

All students, faculty and staff who need to self-quarantine should, 24 hours prior to their return, call the university hotline at 1-877-358-3240. This will allow for both proper tracking of all students in this situation and for students living on campus to be assisted in finding a self-quarantine location. Students living off-campus should plan to self-quarantine at their residence.

HOW TO SELF-QUARANTINE

When under self-quarantine, you should remain in your residence for 14 consecutive days, avoiding contact with others. Monitor for symptoms of fever, cough and shortness of breath. On-campus students may work with Dining Services at the start of their quarantine to establish food delivery options.

WHEN TO SEE A PROVIDER

If you have returned from any international travel or a cruise within the last 14 days and are presenting the symptoms listed above, or if you have been in close contact with someone who is presenting those symptoms and has recently traveled internationally or been on a cruise, you should contact the Brevard County Health Department at 1-866-779-6121 or the Florida Tech Holzer Health Center at 321-674-8078.

If medical attention is needed and coronavirus exposure is suspected, it is important to call ahead before visiting a health care provider, including the Holzer Health Center, to allow the provider to take proper steps to avoid further spread of COVID-19.

Holzer Health Center

  • Hours: Monday-Thursday 8AM-7PM; Friday 8AM-5PM
  • Phone: 321-674-8078

After hours/weekend hospital care: Holmes Regional Medical Center

  • 1350 Hickory St. Melbourne, FL 32901
  • 321-434-7000

Urgent care: Premier Urgent Care

  • 6300 N. Wickham Rd., Ste. 101, Melbourne, FL 32940
  • 321-242-7425

A more comprehensive list of urgent care centers is available at https://www.fit.edu/health/after-hours-care/.

As this situation unfolds, remember to stand at least six feet away from those you are interacting with while also practicing enhanced cleaning of surfaces touched by others and frequent handwashing.

We expect to resume campus face-to-face classes and full university operations starting with the Summer 2020 term.

We are here to support you. We will provide our next update no later than Wednesday, March 18. If you have any questions, please let us know.

Sincerely,

Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President

Dear Florida Tech Community,

We continue to carefully monitor the coronavirus situation and take steps to preserve the health and safety of students, faculty, staff and their families. Keeping that in mind, understanding the challenges of international travel in the current climate, and out of an abundance of caution, we are reconfiguring Spring Commencement exercises scheduled for Saturday, May 9: We are canceling the Clemente Center ticketed ceremonies in favor of graduates-only ceremonies in the Gleason Performing Arts Center. These smaller ceremonies will be webcast live, video recorded and photographed, but will not be open to guests.

Details regarding these reconfigured Spring Commencement exercises are still being finalized, and we will announce those details as soon as we can. Given that Florida Tech boasts students from more than 100 countries, we felt it prudent to make this announcement as soon as possible so that families of graduates could adjust their travel plans accordingly—particularly those who would have traveled internationally to join us on campus.

If any Spring 2020 graduates would like to march during the Fall Commencement exercises Dec. 12, they will be welcomed to participate.

We will share additional information as quickly as possible.

Sincerely,

Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President

Dear Florida Tech community:

We continue to carefully monitor the coronavirus situation and take steps to ensure the health and safety of everyone on our campus. We have a leadership team meeting regularly to assess developments.

As spring break approaches, we know many individuals have travel plans. Travelers should make informed decisions when choosing destinations, as the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is issuing travel advisories for countries with widespread or sustained community transmission. The updated list and additional details are available at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/index.html.

The following areas have some level of travel advisory at present: China, Iran, South Korea, Italy and Japan. The university has suspended business travel for faculty and staff to these affected areas. Additionally, based on guidance from Gov. Ron DeSantis and the State Surgeon General, any students and employees returning from these countries need to self-quarantine and not return to campus for 14 days after their return, unless cleared by a coronavirus test. Students who need to self-quarantine should contact the Dean of Students at rbowers@fit.edu; faculty should notify their department chairs; and employees should notify their supervisors.

Meanwhile, Florida Tech's Alternative Spring Break trips to Puerto Rico and Peru remain scheduled. The group Beyond the Map, which operates those excursions, reports there are no U.S. federal travel advisories relating to those itineraries, and unless or until that changes, the trips will continue as planned.

Regardless of where you travel in coming days and weeks, we encourage you to be vigilant concerning your health. If you feel unwell, our Holzer Health Center on campus is ready to assist you. We recommend staying up to date on the situation by monitoring the Florida Department of Health website at http://www.floridahealth.gov/diseases-and-conditions/COVID-19/, where links to the CDC and World Health Organization are available. Florida Tech updates will be shared on the university's coronavirus webpage.

Looking ahead, Florida Tech is also monitoring travel to the UK, Spain and the Netherlands where the university operates summer study abroad programs. All summer programs are proceeding as planned, as there are no coronavirus-related travel warnings to those areas at this time. Florida Tech will follow guidance that is consistent with CDC, U.S. State Department, and each country's government health authorities. The university will email any updates to participants in these programs.

Assessing the coronavirus's potential impact on campus activities is something our administration is regularly reviewing throughout the Spring Semester. At this point, all Florida Tech campus events are proceeding as scheduled, including Spring Commencement. Any updates for students and their families will be communicated directly to students and the full university community via email, the Florida Tech website and social media.

Sincerely,

T. Dwayne McCay, Ph.D.
President

February 26, 2020

Florida Tech has been monitoring the Coronavirus outbreak through various outlets. As spring break approaches, we understand that many individuals plan to travel. While traveling is not prohibited, please note the following advisories from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC):

CDC recommends that travelers avoid all nonessential travel to the following destinations:

Detailed travel information can be found at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/index.html. If updated advisory or requirements are announced, we will inform the campus community.

Lastly, as a reminder per the CDC’s Prevention & Treatment:

A vital preventative action you can take to help prevent the spread of disease is to 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. Use an alcohol-based sanitizer if soap and water are not available.


 

February 7, 2020 - 10:56 a.m.

Facts about 2019 nCoV-

Disease:  2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) is a virus (more specifically, a coronavirus) identified as the cause of an outbreak of respiratory illness first detected in Wuhan, China. Early on, many of the patients in the outbreak in Wuhan, China reportedly had some link to a large seafood and animal market, suggesting animal-to-person spread. However, a growing number of patients reportedly have not had exposure to animal markets, indicating person-to-person spread is occurring. At this time, it’s unclear how easily or sustainably this virus is spreading between people.

How does it spread:  Most often, spread from person-to-person happens among close contacts (about 6-feet). Person-to-person spread is thought to occur mainly via respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes, similar to how influenza and other respiratory pathogens spread. These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs. It’s currently unclear if a person can get 2019-nCoV by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes.

Symptoms:  or confirmed 2019-nCoV infections, reported illnesses have ranged from people with little to no symptoms to people being severely ill and dying. Symptoms can include:

-Fever

-Cough

-Shortness of breath

Testing:  The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has developed a new laboratory test kit for use in testing patient specimens for 2019 novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV). The test kit is called the “Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) 2019-Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) Real-Time Reverse Transcriptase (RT)-PCR Diagnostic Panel.”

This test is intended for use with upper and lower respiratory specimens collected from persons who meet CDC criteria for 2019-nCoV testing. CDC’s test kit is intended for use by laboratories designated by CDC as qualified, and in the United States, certified under the Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA) to perform high complexity tests.

On Monday, February 3, 2020, CDC submitted an Emergency Use Authorization (EUA) package to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) in order to expedite FDA permitted use of the CDC 2019-nCoV Real-Time RT-PCR Diagnostic Panel in the United States. The EUA process enables FDA to consider and authorize the use of unapproved, but potentially life-saving medical or diagnostic products during a public health emergency.

Prevention:  There is currently no vaccine to prevent 2019-nCoV infection. The best way to prevent infection is to avoid being exposed to this virus. However, as a reminder, CDC always recommends everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory viruses, including:

-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.

-If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.

-Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

-Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

-Stay home when you are sick.

-Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.

-Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.

Treatment:  There is no specific antiviral treatment recommended for 2019-nCoV infection. People infected with 2019-nCoV should receive supportive care to help relieve symptoms. For severe cases, treatment should include care to support vital organ functions.

People who think they may have been exposed to 2019-nCoV should contact your healthcare provider immediately.

What You Should Do:  Stay informed – CDC is updating its website daily with the latest information and advice for the public. (www.cdc.gov/ncov)

Remember to take everyday preventive actions that are always recommended to prevent the spread of respiratory viruses:

-Avoid close contact with sick people.

-While sick, limit contact with others as much as possible.

-Stay home if you are sick.

-Cover your nose and mouth when you cough or sneeze. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth. Germs spread this way.

-Clean and disinfect surfaces and objects that may be contaminated with germs.

-Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub with at least 60% alcohol.

If you feel sick with fever, cough, or difficulty breathing, and have traveled to China or were in close contact with someone with 2019-nCoV in the 14 days before you began to feel sick, seek medical care. Before you go to a doctor’s office or emergency room, call ahead and tell them about your recent travel and your symptoms.

Information can be found at Florida Tech Environmental Health & Safety’s Main webpage at: https://www.fit.edu/office-of-environmental-health-and-safety/

And at our Public Health Information webpage at:

https://www.fit.edu/office-of-environmental-health-and-safety/public-health-information/

Here is some additional information about the virus from The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/index.html

If you have any questions or concerns, you may send them to Florida Tech’s Department of Environmental Health & Safety at ehs@fit.edu.


 

January 30, 2020 - 3:56 p.m.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) today confirmed that the 2019 Novel Coronavirus (2019-nCoV) has spread between two personnel in the United States, representing the first instance of person-to-person spread with this new virus here.

Previously, all confirmed U.S. cases had been associated with travel to Wuhan, China, where an outbreak of respiratory illness caused by this novel coronavirus has been ongoing since December 2019. However, this latest 2019-nCoV patient has no history of travel to Wuhan but shared a household with the patient diagnosed with 2019-nCoV infection on January 21, 2020.

Recognizing early on that the 2019-nCoV could potentially spread between people, CDC has been working closely with state and local partners to identify close contacts of confirmed 2019-nCoV cases. Public health officials identified this Illinois resident through contact tracing. Both patients are in stable condition.

“Given what we’ve seen in China and other countries with the novel coronavirus, CDC experts have expected some person-to-person spread in the US,” said CDC Director Robert R. Redfield, M.D.  “We understand that this may be concerning, but based on what we know now, we still believe the immediate risk to the American public is low.”https://www.cdc.gov/media/releases/2020/p0130-coronavirus-spread.html

The university will continue to monitor the situation.

No confirmed cases in Florida.

If you have any questions or concerns, you may send them to Florida Tech’s Department of Environmental Health & Safety at ehs@fit.edu.


 

January 30, 2020 - 9:46 a.m.

Campus Community:

Information can be found at Florida Tech Environmental Health & Safety’s Main webpage at: https://www.fit.edu/office-of-environmental-health-and-safety/

And at our Public Health Information webpage at:

https://www.fit.edu/office-of-environmental-health-and-safety/public-health-information/

The university will continue to monitor the situation.

No confirmed cases in Florida.

Here is some additional information about the virus from The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/index.html

If you have any questions or concerns, you may send them to Florida Tech’s Department of Environmental Health & Safety at ehs@fit.edu.