For Everyone

The University of Maine System and its institutions remain operational, with appropriate safety measures implemented such as remote instruction, remote working for most employees and social distancing when applicable.

The University of Maine System will not be conducting day camps or overnight camps during summer 2020 on campus or at other non-university locations under the University’s auspices. (Certain limited exceptions may be granted by campus leadership and campus emergency operations teams for programs in August that serve incoming University first-year students but which may in some instances be referred to as “camps”.)

The University of Maine System will begin July 1 allowing additional activities previously curtailed by the pandemic, including:

  • Limited group gatherings up to 10 people. Such gathering must be consistent with the guidance of civil authorities requiring social distancing and face coverings. This topic will be closely monitored in anticipation of implementing further increases in allowable University group size limits within the month of July.
  • Community spaces and facilities such as libraries, museums, gyms, computer labs, and study hall spaces may begin opening July 1 consistent with the group gathering guidance above, upon approval by campus leadership and the campus emergency operations team, and in compliance with any other requirements which may be in place by civil authorities in Maine, in particular the Department of Economic and Community Development.
  • Retails stores may begin operating July 1 upon approval by campus leadership and the campus emergency operations team, and with any other requirements that may be in place by civil authorities in Maine, in particular the Department of Economic and Community Development. Note: Retail stores at this time do not include University food service operations apart from those essential dining operations which have continued at reduced operations and which may need to do so.
  • Childcare centers: Any childcare facilities operated by the University, under its auspices or in University facilities and not currently operating may begin opening July 1 upon approval by campus leadership and the campus emergency operations team, and in compliance with any other requirements that may be in place by civil authorities in Maine, in particular the Department of Health and Human Services.

The response to COVID-19 continues to be a rapidly evolving situation even at this stage of the pandemic and this guidance is subject to change. Interested individuals and organizations are encouraged to check maine.edu/health-advisory routinely for updates. Employees and students in particular are encouraged to check the relevant sections of the web site for information particular to their needs as the University continues to consider its Safe Return planning. More information is planned and expected to become available over the course of June.

(Last reviewed/updated: 06/03/2020)

Governor Janet Mills issued an executive order in support of CDC guidance on April 29, 2020 requiring the public to wear cloth face coverings in public setting where physical distancing measures are difficult to maintain.

“Public settings” mean:

  • indoor spaces that are accessible to the public such as grocery stores, retail stores, pharmacies and health care facilities;
  • outdoor spaces such as playgrounds, busy parking lots, and other areas such as lines for take-out service where the public typically gathers in a smaller area; and
  • public transportation such as a taxi, Uber, Lyft, ride-sharing or similar service; ferry, bus, or train; and any semi-enclosed transit stop or waiting area

Exceptions:

  • Cloth face coverings are not required for children under age 2;
  • a child in a child-care setting;
  • for anyone who has trouble breathing or related medical conditions;
  • who is otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance

A person who cannot wear a cloth face covering because of a medical condition is not required to produce medical documentation of the condition, provided that an employer may require such documentation from an employee in accordance with state and federal law.

Note: University of Maine Employees should see related guidance in the ‘For Employees’ section of the Public Health Advisory Page.

Reference: An Order to Stay Safer at Home

(Last reviewed/updated: 05/12/2020)

The University of Maine System has formed the Fall 2020 Safe Return Planning Committee to prepare for the safe return to campus.  The group held its first organizational meeting last week and is charged with assessing COVID-19 guidance and conditions and developing appropriate actions and protocols that can be implemented to provide for a safe return to campus as Maine begins its return to the new world we all will face in the coming weeks.  More than 40 members of the university committee from the campus incident command teams were invited to the initial discussion.

The planning committee will be co-chaired by Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Robert Placido and Chief Facilities Management and General Services Officer Chip Gavin and will include planning leaders from the incident command teams for each campus and a representative from the University of Maine School of Law.  Committee members represent many of the academic and operational functions of the University of Maine System and experts from across the System will be asked to participate as needed to inform the planning process.

The Fall 2020 Safe Return Planning Committee will operate transparently, providing a monthly update to the University community starting in May and regular updates to the UMS President’s Council. The initial update will detail committee membership and a work plan.

Anyone with questions or suggestions is invited to contact Chip Gavin, Chief Facilities Management and General Services Officer.

(Last reviewed/updated: 04/21/2020)

The UMS Office of Student Success and Credential Attainment has compiled a list of community support for students and staff during COVID-19. The Resource for Adult Learners includes links and key information on a range of topics including food assistance, filing for unemployment, access to WiFi, student loan repayment assistance, and child care. Many of the resources included in the guide can also be of use to University employees.

(Last reviewed/updated: 04/13/2020)

Courses for the Summer Sessions I and II will be offered online because registration will begin before we can predict when fact-to-face instruction will be viable again. Summer programming, such as athletic camps and non-credit academic programs, will be assessed closer to their individual start dates, so they will not be cancelled at this time.

(Last reviewed/updated: 04/07/2020)

All travelers arriving in Maine are required to self-quarantine for 14 days from the date of arrival to mitigate spread of COVID-19, as ordered by the Governor April 3, 2020. Only people providing an essential service, as defined by the Governor, are exempt.

Per the CDC guidelines, fifteen (15) days of self-isolation is required for:

  • Any traveler to the U.S. (returning or coming for the first time) from any country under a CDC Warning Level 3, regardless of whether that direction is specifically given to them at the U.S. point of entry; Travelers Returning from International Travel
  • any student or employee who had direct contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19;
  • any student or employee who has had direct contact with someone who is under care for suspected exposure to COVID-19.
  • anyone who is under direction from a medical provider or appropriate medical authority to do so.
  • Those returning from high-impact areas with known COVID-19 cases or community transmission of the disease. This includes domestic and in-state travel. Employees should contact their manager/supervisor to discuss accommodations and planning return to work.
  • High impact areas include areas with known COVID-19 cases or community transmission of the disease. This includes domestic travel to areas with a known outbreak of COVID-19 and where use of mass transportation increases risk of potential exposure. Reference: Public Health Recommendations after Travel from Areas with Potential Risk of Exposure to Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)
  • If you are unsure about whether or not 15 days of self-isolation may be required, contact your healthcare provider

Per Maine CDC, seven (7) days of self-isolation is recommended for:

  • People who came in close proximity to someone who was possibly exposed to COVID-19 and the person is asymptomatic. Maine CDC encourages people to self-isolate for 7 days. If symptoms should appear in that timeframe OR you have additional concerns, follow-up with your healthcare provider to discuss next steps.
  • If you are unsure or worried that you may have been exposed to COVID-19, please contact your medical provider for guidance. It is prudent to self-isolate until a medical provider has provided additional guidance.

If you are in the same household as someone who is isolating, consult with your healthcare provider to determine if you also need to follow isolation protocols.

For instructions on how to self-isolate reference:

(Last reviewed/updated: 04/06/2020)

With the official launch of our new ‘virtual University‘ this week, reliance on technological solutions to continue instructional activities and business operations has hit an all time high. US:IT has continued efforts to provide additional tools and services to support the University community during this transition. We are pleased to announce the immediate availability of these new services through the IT Resource Guide.

(Last reviewed/updated: 03/27/2020)

Any in-person events or gatherings which include 10 or more people are prohibited. These restrictions include any events on University property, events being hosted by the University in a non-University location, and official participation by University students, staff, and faculty in such events regardless of location. If you are considering attending an event or gathering of any kind, but you are sick, please stay home.

(Last reviewed/updated: 03/18/2020)

The Tools for Remote Teaching, Learning and Work Resource Guide (https://www.maine.edu/information-technology/support/tools-resource-guide/) has been updated to include information regarding internet connectivity options across the state. The FCC recently announced the ‘Keep Americans Connected’ pledge which asks telecom providers to play their part to ensure citizens are able to maintain or gain internet access, including providing current mobile subscribers with unlimited data and free mobile hotspot services for the next 60 days. On the Resource Guide, we’ve included a NEW interactive graphical map showing the locations of educational sites in Maine where internet and/or computer access may be accessible to students (as of today). We’ve also included a listing of Public libraries in the State as well as the most popular national chains where free public WiFi is available. As the COVID-19 situation in Maine continues to change by the hour, the availability of these resources may be affected and we will be keeping this guide up to date.

(Last reviewed/updated: 03/16/2020)

The CDC provides information about symptoms and much more: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/symptoms.html

(Last reviewed/updated: 03/13/2020)

Call your doctor.

If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19 and develop a fever and symptoms, such as cough or difficulty breathing, call your healthcare provider for medical advice. Call ahead before visiting your doctor or other medical provider.

For more information, visit the CDC site here: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/steps-when-sick.html

There is no specific treatment for illness caused by the novel coronavirus. However, many of the symptoms can be treated. Treatment is based on the patient’s condition. There is currently no vaccine to prevent novel coronavirus. Be aware of scam products for sale that make false claims to prevent or treat this new infection.

Call your healthcare provider if you develop a fever and symptoms of respiratory illness, such as cough or difficulty breathing, and have been in close contact with a person known to have COVID-19 or if you live in or have recently traveled to an area with ongoing spread. Tell your healthcare provider about your recent travel or contact.

Your healthcare provider will work with the Maine Center for Disease Control to determine if you need to be tested for COVID-19.

(Last reviewed/updated: 03/13/2020)

All students, staff and faculty should please update information regarding emergency notifications in your emergency alerts profile. Follow this link for instructions. This will allow the University to best communicate with you.

Email: The Chancellor has been and will continue to send email updates at key junctures to keep the community advised.

Web site: The University is posting regular updates and information to a one-stop source web site for Covid-19 information: https://www.maine.edu/health-advisory/ . The web site also provides links to information from the Maine and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control.

If you have a question not answered by any of this guidance, the University also has a phone information line with recorded information and options for getting personal responses. That number is 207.581.2681.

(Last reviewed/updated: 03/13/2020)

Effective March 23, 2020, UMS universities will transition all in-class academic instruction to online or other pedagogically appropriate distance modalities that do not require in-class presence for the remainder of the Spring semester. Graduate, clinical, and similarly-situated students should be transitioned to remote work if possible. Individual universities, colleges, and departments should provide all material assistance and accommodation possible through this transition. This direction is in effect until further notice and will be regularly reviewed.

(Last reviewed/updated: 03/13/2020)

UMS employee information UMS has flexible and non-punitive leave policies for students and staff affected by COVID-19.

  • Employees are encouraged to stay home if when ill and to leave work if they become ill
  • Employees may stay home and, if feasible, work remotely when sick or caring for sick household members. Employees should discuss remote work arrangements with their supervisor.
  • UMS will continue to monitor state and federal agency guidance and adjust work and leave practices as appropriate. In the meantime, information regarding paid leave and Family Medical Leave (FML) can be found at on the my campus benefits page.
  • Continue to encourage welcoming environments for ALL members of our community.

(Last reviewed/updated: 03/13/2020)

According to the CDC older adults and people with certain other risk factors like heart disease, diabetes and lung disease are at a higher risk of serious illness from coronavirus infection. Faculty who face higher risks associated with COVID-19 will be able to transition to online and distance instruction as soon as possible and staff employees with similar risks who communicate a desire to work remotely will be given preference for “telecommuting” work-from-home arrangements to the extent possible. Students facing higher risks may seek accommodations from their university accessibility services office.

(Last reviewed/updated: 03/13/2020)

UMS strongly encourages all members of its community to learn about and practice social distancing, such as avoiding large crowds, staying home if you are sick, and avoiding close contact to other people. Please review the CDC’s guidance regarding keeping yourself safe here.

(Last reviewed/updated: 03/13/2020)

According to the CDC, older Americans and individuals with certain pre-existing health conditions are at higher risk for Covid-19. Please take time to review information about those risk factors and actions which individuals at higher risk can take is available here.

(Last reviewed/updated: 03/13/2020)

Update your Contacts

Students and university employees are urged to update their contact information in MaineStreet as well as to review and update current Emergency Alert Notification preferences and subscriptions. It is critical that each campus be able to communicate directly with their communities through email and/or text messaging. We encourage you to follow these guides to review and/or update your information.

These guides can be found here: https://www.maine.edu/information-technology/support/update-account-information/.

Should you have any questions or need further assistance, please contact help@maine.edu or visit the UMS IT Support site: UMS IT Support site: https://www.maine.edu/information-technology/support/.

(Last reviewed/updated: 03/12/2020)

Coronaviruses are a large family of viruses. Many of them infect animals, but some coronaviruses from animals can evolve (change) into a new human coronavirus that can spread from person-to-person. This is what happened with the current novel coronavirus known as COVID-19. Diseases from coronaviruses in people typically cause mild to moderate illness, like the common cold. Some, like the SARS or MERS viruses, cause serious infections like pneumonia.

How does COVID-19 spread?

Like other respiratory illnesses, such as influenza, human coronaviruses most commonly spread to others from an infected person who has symptoms through:

  • Through droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes
  • Close personal contact, such as caring for an infected person
  • Touching an object or surface with the virus on it, then touching your mouth, nose, or eyes before washing your hands (but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads)

We are learning more each day about how this virus spreads and how long it takes for people to become sick and who may be especially at risk. The CDC provides information about how to help prevent Covid-19 and much more information: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/about/prevention.html

(Last reviewed/updated: 03/12/2020)