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WSCC updates on the Coronavirus

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August 6, 2020:

News Release: 

Contact:  Thomas A. Hawley, Executive Director of College Relations
Phone:  231/843-5803
Date:  August 6, 2020
Re: WSCC Fall semester 2020
 

SCOTTVILLE – The West Shore Community College Student Senate has issued a statement in support of wearing masks on the campus and to encourage other Covid-19 mitigation strategies.

The statement reads, "The Student Senate of West Shore Community College strongly supports practices designed to prevent the spread of the deadly COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic. These include wearing face masks at all times while on the WSCC campus and in college facilities, routinely washing our hands and using hand sanitizer, and practicing social distancing. WSCC’s Student Senate is dedicated to preventing the spread of COVID-19 both on campus and in our community and we, therefore, recommend following CDC guidelines to preserve the health and safety of WSCC students, faculty, administrators, and their families."

Student Senate will provide WSCC-branded cloth masks to the student body free of charge during the first week of the fall semester.

"The science is clear. Masks work to prevent the spread of Covid-19," said Acting Senate President, Connor Grant. "As a Senate, we wanted to send a clear message in support of mask-wearing and other Covid-19 prevention measures. We hope all students will wear masks inside campus facilities and even outside at the college when six feet of distance isn't possible."

"Masks are a way of showing we care about each other at West Shore," said Senate Secretary Sam Gillette, "We need to take the proper steps so we can safely return to campus this fall and have face-to-face classes and events." 

"I applaud the Senate for taking this stance," said Annie Jacobson, director of enrollment and student engagement and senate co-advisor. "As our student leaders, I think it's important the senate models courteous behavior for the rest of campus." 

Student Senate currently meets remotely every Thursday at 4:30 p.m. Meetings are open to the public. Anyone wishing to attend may contact Senate Co-Advisor Dr. Matt Sanderson at mwsanderson@westshore.edu for directions.

July 31, 2020:

News Release: 

Contact:  Thomas A. Hawley, Executive Director of College Relations
Phone:  231/843-5803
Date:  July 31, 2020
Re: WSCC Fall semester 2020
 

SCOTTVILLE - West Shore Community College’s fall semester will include a blend of in-person and remote academic offerings for students, along with online support services and a phased plan for reopening the campus buildings to students and employees.

“We look forward to welcoming our students to the campus this fall,” said WSCC president Scott Ward. “We are taking a very measured and thoughtful approach to the fall semester, and we’re working to put the necessary protocols and safety measures in place to make it possible. Maintaining the safety and well-being of our campus community is always our top priority, and the college will adjust plans based on the current status of the health crisis.”

The semester will open on August 31, as originally scheduled, and final exams will conclude on December 18.
 
Many courses are being offered in a blended format so students benefit from real-time connections with faculty members along with the flexibility to complete work on their own schedule. A variety of support services will also be available to students.
 
On-campus academic instruction will account for approximately half of the college’s total curriculum and will include course-related activities requiring in-person, lab-based instruction and the use of specialized computer hardware and software.
 
Disciplines in which some on-campus instruction will take place include the health professions, lab sciences, and occupational programs. Due to the uncertainty of the future impact from the Coronavirus, classes currently scheduled to meet on campus may change to a hybrid or online format.
 
Due to a high number of online and hybrid courses, students may need more access to dependable technology, which includes a laptop or personal computer, web cam, stable internet access, and software specific to classes. Students who need technology support should complete a Coronavirus CARE form at https://www.westshore.edu/campus-life/care-team/
 
The college will follow Michigan Department of Health, District Health Department #10, and Center for Disease Control recommendations regarding the use of personal protective equipment in the instructional and laboratory settings. The college will also monitor updates from the Governor’s office and adapt its operations as new information, guidance, or direction is announced.
 
In accordance with Michigan Executive Order #2020 – 147, masks are required to be worn on campus and accommodations will be made in accord with the order. Students seeking accommodations should contact Julie Dill in the Student Services office; jdill@westshore.edu or call 231-843-5942.
 
To assure social distancing guidelines are being met, the college has prioritized the buildings, classrooms, and laboratories that are most critical for in-person student learning, and staff has begun modifying those areas. To reduce the possibility of the spread of the virus, several cultural and community events will be held virtually rather than in-person through the fall months.
 
The college’s reopening plan calls for enhanced cleaning and disinfecting in high-use areas, and access to some buildings may be limited to specific entrances and exits. The college has implemented a daily screening process for employees, and screening will be required for participants in specific programs and activities. The college will work with the District Health Department #10 for reporting, testing, tracing, and quarantining in the event a student or employee reports symptoms.
 
For students who have already registered for the fall semester, the college will be offering a virtual Campus Connections event prior to the start of classes to help orient students to the campus and help them adjust to college operations during the pandemic. Details for the virtual Campus Connections will be announced soon.

June 3, 2020:

News Release: 

Contact:  Thomas A. Hawley, Executive Director of College Relations
Phone:  231/843-5803
Date: June 3, 2020
Re: WSCC Distributes CARES Act Funds to Students
 

SCOTTVILLE - This week, more than 470 West Shore Community College students will receive emergency federal funding provided by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act to assist them with unexpected costs incurred during the COVID-19 pandemic.

In late March, the CARES Act was passed by Congress and signed into law to provide economic relief from COVID-19. It authorized the U.S. Department of Education to provide funding for universities and colleges to award in the form of emergency financial aid grants to eligible students.

WSCC received $564,751 from the CARES Act, of which $282,376 is designated for emergency grants to students. The college will use the remaining funds to pay for other unexpected expenses due to COVID-19.

To be eligible for a CARES Act funding distribution, students must have been enrolled in the winter 2020 semester, be Title IV eligible for federal financial aid, and must not have already received emergency relief funding from the college.

“The pandemic has caused unprecedented disruption to our students and college operations,” said WSCC President Scott Ward. “While the college has provided free technology and other emergency assistance, we are grateful to be able to put these dollars directly into the hands of our students.”

Students who have no expected family contribution and are eligible for the maximum Pell grant amount will receive $400 from this fund, while students who are eligible for partial Pell amounts will receive $300. Students who are not Pell-eligible will receive $20 for each contact hour in which they were enrolled up to a maximum of $260.

In the wake of the pandemic, the West Shore Community College Foundation has supported urgent and emergent needs for students, and to prevent the ripple effects of COVID-19 from being a barrier to college persistence.

Several years ago, the foundation established an emergency fund which provides financial support to allow students to stay enrolled, and offer support for food, housing and other needs.

“Our students were already carrying a heavy load prior to COVID-19 and this pandemic has created more financial hardship in many of their lives,” said Thom Hawley, executive director of the foundation. “It’s important to recognize the challenges they face, their commitment to completing their education and we need to do everything we can, as a community, to support them through these trying times.”

On March 23, WSCC shifted classes for credit students to a remote learning format in less than one week’s time. Due to the pandemic, all summer semester classes are being offered online.

WSCC personnel continue to work remotely and limited campus operations are expected to resume in mid-June. In the interim, the college has established many online support services to assist students with specific needs resulting from the pandemic such as online advising, counseling and tutoring.

The summer semester is underway now through July 24. The fall semester runs from August 26 through December 13.

Anyone interested in donating directly to support the emergency student fund should visit the WSCC Foundation “donate now” web page.

May 28, 2020:

News Release: 

Contact:  Thomas A. Hawley, Executive Director of College Relations
Phone:  231/843-5803
Date: May 28, 2020
Re:  WSCC making alternate plans for performing arts groups
 
SCOTTVILLE – West Shore Community College Performing Arts is developing alternative plans for large-group rehearsals and performing events which were scheduled to start as early as August.
 
The plan includes continuing the suspension of all face-to-face WSCC Performing Arts events until October 12. This suspension includes weekly performing music ensemble rehearsals, theater productions, WSCC Performing Arts Series presentations, face-to-face community outreach and friend/fundraising efforts.
 
In recent weeks, the college’s performing arts team, in partnership with other area arts organization, has been developing alternative programming for the community.
 
From the beginning of Michigan’s stay-at-home order Ted Malt, Director of Performing Arts and Professor of Music,  has been in contact with many presenting agencies, universities, regional K-12 educators, and performing arts directors to discuss the feasibility of upcoming group rehearsals and performances.
 
“As a performing arts program which unites many people through the arts within an academic year, health and safety are our first priorities. With the full support and advice of the college’s COVID-19 Task Force, we are developing a plan of action taking performing ensembles and performing arts events in an alternate direction. Our hope is these changes are only temporary replacements to our traditional offerings, but will serve as an important step to ensure the safety of our students and community both now and in the future,” says Malt.
 
A decision will be made in mid-August to determine whether face-to-face gatherings can be methodically reinstated after October 12, or any time prior. Pending this decision, performing groups will either be resumed or alternate programming will continue through December 2020. Periodic decision-making will continue until it is deemed safe to resume normal programming.
 
“These are not easy decisions in these uncertain times. Providing an alternate form of programming to represent what the College has offered in the past is no easy feat. It is my goal to ensure we don’t miss a beat under what are unprecedented times. It is my hope that our new normal returns sooner than later; nevertheless, I believe in being proactive. Having a plan in place ensures the continuation of our strong Performing Arts programs at the college.”
 
“The college will be providing our performing arts membership, donors, and the community more information on what ‘alternative programming’ looks like in the weeks to come,” Malt adds. “Any alterations to the Performing Arts, music, and theater COVID-19 action plan will be made based on strong evidence supporting the health and safety of our membership and community.”
 
For more information, contact Malt at tdmalt@westshore.edu
 
Date: May 28, 2020
Re:  WSCC cancels 5K mud run scheduled for July
 
SCOTTVILLE – West Shore Community College’s Muddy Fox Trot will take a hiatus for one year after organizers decided to cancel the race due to ongoing concerns over the coronavirus pandemic.
 
The 6th annual family-friendly 5K mud run, with a boot camp style obstacle course, was scheduled for July 18, on the college’s campus. The fun run annually benefits the WSCC Foundation student scholarship fund.
 
“This is not the news we wanted to share with the community, but after careful deliberation, we believe this is the responsible action to take in order to keep everyone safe during the ongoing Covid 19 pandemic,” said Julie Page Smith, director of the college’s Wellness Center and an organizer of the race. “We are already looking forward to offering a muddy challenge to area runners in July 2021.”
 
Questions about refunds or cancellation of the race may be directed to Smith at jsmith@westshore.edu

May 21, 2020:

News Release: 

Contact:  Thomas A. Hawley, Executive Director of College Relations
Phone:  231/843-5803
Date: May 21, 2020
Re: WSCC plans for fall semester classes
 
SCOTTVILLE – Like most community colleges around the country, West Shore Community College moved to online-only instruction in March, due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and college officials are expecting to resume limited campus operations by early June and a full array of class options for the fall semester. All summer semester classes will be offered online.
 
“We look forward to welcoming our students to the campus again this fall,” said WSCC president Scott Ward. “But there is a great deal of work to be done before then and we’re working to put the necessary protocols and safety measures in place to make that possible. Maintaining the safety and well-being of our campus community is always our top priority and the college will adjust all plans based on the current status of the health crisis.”
 
A task force, which has been meeting daily since mid-March, is reviewing various fall semester operating scenarios, but Ward stressed they are most focused on taking the necessary precautions that will allow students and college staff to return to the campus safely.
 
“We are being cautiously optimistic, and we will follow state and federal guidelines to protect our campus community. What those precautions and protections might look like is the focus of the task force.”
 
In the meantime, WSCC personnel are working remotely and continuing to assess the pandemic’s impact. The college has established many online support services to assist students with specific needs resulting from the pandemic such as online advising, counseling and tutoring.
 
“I am very proud of our students, faculty and staff who responded, with very short notice, to this new learning environment and we want to be reunited only when it is safe to do so.”
 
Ward added, “We know many people in our community are anxious, and some of them are hurting. We are assessing the needs of their college-bound students and we want to be there for them every step of the way.”

The summer semester begins June 1 through July 24. The fall semester runs from August 26 and ends on December 13.

Registration for the College’s summer and fall semesters is currently underway for first-time, returning, and guest students and will continue to the first week of each term’s classes.

May 19, 2020:

News Release: 

Contact:  Thomas A. Hawley, Executive Director of College Relations
Phone:  231/843-5803
Date: May 19, 2020
Re: West Shore Adds New Online Capabilities and Summer Sections
 
SCOTTVILLE – With many current and potential college students stuck at home this summer and facing an uncertain fall semester, West Shore Community College (WSCC) has expanded its online summer offerings to provide advanced learning options for students looking to get ahead.

New sections of anatomy and physiology, general geology, introduction to statistics, and interpersonal communications have been added to the summer schedule after current sections of those courses filled to capacity.

Faculty in these courses are also using a variety of advanced technology to enhance the online learning experience. In the case of general geology, lab kits containing a variety of rock specimens have been developed and will be mailed to students’ homes. These kits will allow for at-home, hands-on learning and will be paired with online virtual field trips.

Anatomy and physiology 1, as well as the online summer offering of intro to chemistry, will utilize Labster software that provides students with a simulated lab environment in which they can conduct virtual experiments and test their knowledge.

“We are using these unfortunate circumstances as an opportunity to experiment with some really cool online learning technologies and techniques,” said Professor of Chemistry and chair of the sciences division, Dr. Sonja Siewert. “Our hope is that students who might not otherwise be able to take one of these science courses in a face-to-face format right now, no matter which college or university they are attending full-time, will still be able to take these courses from WSCC and get the quality of experience and knowledge they need.”

Dr. Mark Kinney, vice president of academics and student services, added, “This is a great opportunity for students who have recently graduated high school to get a jump start on their college career while they are stuck at home, for university students who want to save some money by taking these courses at WSCC during the summer and then transferring the credit, and for current students who want to continue to make progress on their education during the summer.”

The summer semester runs from June 1 through July 24. Registration is also open for the fall semester, which begins August 26 and ends December 13. As always, students who register early for classes have the best selection of courses. The full selection of summer and fall courses can be viewed under the “Course Search” tab on my.westshore.edu.

All students seeking financial aid must complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid form, also commonly referred to as FAFSA. Information about the FAFSA can be found at www.fafsa.gov. Financial aid questions may be directed to the WSCC Financial Aid office at finaid@westshore.edu.

Guest students who primarily attend another college or university must submit the Michigan Uniform Undergraduate Guest Application, which can be obtained from their university or by emailing admissions@westshore.edu prior to registration.

New students or those who have any other questions can contact the Student Services Office at studentservices@westshore.edu. Students can also schedule an online advising appointment by visiting https://www.westshore.edu/admissions/advising-and-registration/.

May 15, 2020:

Curb side drop-off for borrowed laptops 

The West Shore Community College Information Technology Department is asking students, who borrowed computers and related technology equipment during the Winter Semester,  to return the equipment  to the campus on: 

Monday, May 18,  9 a.m. – 12 p.m.

Tuesday, May 19, 12 p.m. – 3 p.m.  

Wednesday, May 20, 3 p.m. – 6 p.m.  

Employees from the Help Desk will receive the borrowed computers, at the designated times, in the Technical Center Building bus drop-off zone. Those delivering the computers are asked  to practice social distancing protocols and remain in their car. All campus buildings will remain closed. 

Any questions, contact the Help Desk at helpdesk@westshore.edu or by calling 231-845-5570.

May 6, 2020:

As a result of Governor Whitmer’s executive order extension, the West Shore Community College campus remains closed until May 15. College employees are working remotely and will respond to messaging as they are able.

Campus events

  • All college sponsored public events or community meetings, through May 30, have been cancelled or postponed until further notice.

Graduation

  • For those students who met the graduation requirements at the conclusion of the winter semester, the conferral of degrees will occur as scheduled and diplomas will be distributed early this summer.

Registration- summer and fall semesters

  • Registration for the College’s summer and fall semesters is underway for first-time, returning, and guest students and will continue to the first week of each term’s classes. The summer semester runs from June 1 through July 24. The fall semester begins August 26 and ends December 13. 
  • Due to the current status of the coronavirus pandemic, all summer semester courses are scheduled in an online-only format. At a later date and if circumstances allow, additional hybrid and face-to-face sections may be added. There are also many online courses offered through Michigan Colleges Online.
  • Registration and advising for the summer semester and registration for the fall semester is underway. Current students can register for classes online via my.westshore.edu and can reach out to an academic advisor at studentservices@westshore.edu. Current students and those who have applied within the past two years, may schedule an advising appointment at the following link:
  • Fall/Summer 2020 Advising-Registration Appointments
  • New students should apply and complete the acceptance email instructions on how to complete both the online New Student Orientation (NSO) and New Student Registration (NSR). Students will be directed to sign up for an advising appointment at the completion of the NSR.
  • Students should contact a high school counselor for a transcript and test scores (SAT/ACT and PSAT for dual enrolled students) and send them to admissions@westshore.edu  Currently, placement testing is very limited, however, a student will be allowed to enroll in ENG 111 (college level English) and MTH 121 (intermediate algebra) with an overall HS GPA of 2.8 or higher and an appropriate SAT score (MTH - 460-499; ENG – 340 - 449).  Students wishing to take a math course higher than MTH 121 or were placed into ENG 051, must contact the Learning and Testing Center for an appointment to take the appropriate portion of Accuplacer. testingcenter@westshore.edu
  • Students who are home for the summer and attend another college or university may also enroll in course work as guest students. Guest students must submit the MACRAO approved Michigan Uniform Undergraduate Guest Application to admissions@westshore.edu prior to registration

Communication

  • Official communications from the college will be delivered via WSCC email, the WSCC app, and on this web site. Information will also be posted on social media. If an instructor plans to use an alternative means of communication, they will notify you.

Technology support

  • For immediate technology concerns, email the help desk at helpdesk@westshore.edu or call 231-843-5570. The Help Desk provides support to students, instructors, and staff who are experiencing technical difficulties.

Student support

  • If you are (or you know) a student with any kind of personal or academic need arising from the Coronavirus outbreak, you may request CARE Team assistance by completing the Coronavirus CARE form.

Bookstore

  • You can both view and purchase your course books via the college’s virtual bookstore.
  • Click on the button Let’s Get Started and follow the screen prompts. If you are planning to purchase, you will be asked to create a password and log-in before submitting to your cart.
  • Student financial aid will be available to use on our virtual store for the summer semester beginning May 11, and ending at midnight on June 5.
  • To find out what the virtual store offers and how to use the site, click here: Select the MENU button and then select the Help & Contact Us button. Here you will find a list of frequently asked questions and contact information for the college’s virtual store provider.

April 10, 2020:

As a result of Governor Whitmer’s executive order extension, the West Shore Community College campus remains closed until May 1. College faculty and staff are working remotely and will respond to messaging as they are able.

  • Online academic instruction will continue until the end of the semester, May 1, and students will not return to the campus for exams. Instructors will determine details for final exams and communicate directly with students as soon as possible.
  • All college sponsored public events or community meetings, through May 1, have been cancelled or postponed until further notice.
  • WSCC’s commencement and related activities have been postponed. The college is exploring options for holding a commencement ceremony at a later date, but no decision has been made. For those students who have met the graduation requirements, the conferral of degrees will still occur on time and diplomas will be distributed early this summer.
  • We recognize the conversion to online coursework is challenging for many students and the administration is currently working on adjusting policies and procedures to help students complete the coursework and assist those who cannot complete. Continue to speak with your instructor about your concerns. The college will be providing a variety of options to help reduce the financial and academic effects of this interruption.
  • Even though K-12 schools have modified their academic year-end classes, dual enrolled students are responsible for completing the requirements for their college class (es). Direct questions, on specific classes, to the instructor or academic department office.
  • All successfully completed winter semester classes will count toward degree requirements and graduation. For dual enrolled students, successfully completed classes will meet WSCC requirements, but may not meet high school requirements. Consult with your school district for more information.
  • Most WSCC Student Services are available to help you. Email the office staff and they will determine the best way to meet your needs. studentservices@westshore.edu
  • Due to the current status of the coronavirus pandemic, all summer courses are scheduled in an online-only format. At a later date and if circumstances allow, additional hybrid and face-to-face sections may be added. There are also many online courses offered through Michigan Colleges Online.
  • Registration for the summer semester begins on April 13. Registration for the fall semester does not start until May 4.

News Release: 

Contact:  Thomas A. Hawley, Executive Director of College Relations
Phone:  231/843-5803
Date: April 10, 2020
Re: WSCC Commencement postponed
 
SCOTTVILLE –In response to Governor Whitmer’s executive order extension to remain at home, West Shore Community College is postponing its May 1 commencement ceremony, a decision taken by numerous colleges and universities across the country as a result of the coronavirus health emergency.
 
The college is exploring options for holding a commencement ceremony at a later date, but no decision has been made.
 
“Commencement is a highlight of the college experience for students and their families and a source of pride for the college. But, we must be responsible and take into consideration the health of the entire West Shore community. We look forward to the opportunity to honor our students’ accomplishments properly with a ceremony at a later date,” said WSCC President Scott Ward.

Online academic instruction will continue until the end of the semester, May 1, and for those students who have met the graduation requirements, the conferral of degrees will still occur on time and diplomas will be distributed early this summer.

All college sponsored public events or community meetings on the campus, have been cancelled or postponed until further notice.

Registration for the College’s summer semester opens on April 13, for first-time, returning, and guest students and will continue to the first week of classes. The summer semester runs from June 1 through July 24.

Due to the current status of the coronavirus pandemic, all summer courses are scheduled in an online-only format. At a later date and if circumstances allow, additional hybrid and face-to-face sections may be added. There are also many online courses offered through Michigan Colleges Online.

Online course schedules can be viewed under the “Course Search” tab on my.westshore.edu and advising sessions are available online or by phone conference.

New students or those who have any other questions can contact the Student Services Office at studentservices@westshore.edu

Registration for the fall semester is expected to begin no later than May 4th.

The college is providing updates on a WSCC website link –– www.westshore.edu/coronavirus​ that is updated as information becomes available.

April 7, 2020:

News Release: 

Contact:  Thomas A. Hawley, Executive Director of College Relations
Phone:  231/843-5803
Date: April 7, 2020
Re: Register Now for Summer College Classes
 
SCOTTVILLE – Registration for West Shore Community College’s summer semester opens on April 13, for first-time, returning, and guest students and will continue to the first week of classes.
 
The summer semester runs from June 1 through July 24.

Students who register early for classes have the best selection of courses. Due to the current status of the Coronavirus pandemic, all summer courses are currently scheduled in an online-only format. Additional sections, including hybrid and face-to-face options, will be added, at a later date, if the circumstances allow. In addition, there are many online courses offered through Michigan Colleges Online.
 
Online course schedules can be viewed under the “Course Search” tab on my.westshore.edu.
 
All students seeking financial aid must complete a Free Application for Federal Student Aid form, also commonly referred to as FAFSA. Information about the FAFSA can be found at www.fafsa.gov. Financial aid questions may be directed to the WSCC Financial Aid office at finaid@westshore.edu.
 
Students who are home for the summer and attend another college or university may also enroll in course work as guest students. Guest students must submit the MACRAO approved Michigan Uniform Undergraduate Guest Application to admissions@westshore.edu prior to registration.
New students or those who have any other questions can contact the Student Services Office at studentservices@westshore.edu. Current students and those who have applied within the past two years, may schedule an advising appointment at the following link: advising appointment sign up.
 
Registration for the fall semester is expected to begin no later than May 4.
 

March 24, 2020:

Letter from President Ward: 

To read, click here.

March 23, 2020:

News Release: 

Contact:  Thomas A. Hawley, Executive Director of College Relations
Phone:  231/843-5803
Date:  March 23, 2020
Re: Full campus shut down due to executive order
 
SCOTTVILLE – Today (March 23), Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer issued a "Stay Home, Stay Safe" executive order for the State of Michigan and the college is beginning a full campus shut down as of 12:01 a.m., on March 24. In response to the order, all of the college’s buildings are closed to the public through April 13. The order prohibits in-person work that is not necessary to sustain or protect life. College faculty and staff are working remotely and will respond to messaging as they are able.
 
Online academic instruction will continue until the end of the semester, May 1.
 
Registration for the summer and fall semesters has been postponed until further notice.
 
All college sponsored public events or community meetings, through April 30, have been cancelled or postponed until further notice.
 
Pending further actions by the governor’s office and Michigan Department of Health, after April 13, parts of the campus will be staffed in-person Monday-Friday, from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m., through the end of the semester.
 
Following guidance from the CDC, as well as state and local public health authorities, a task force is meeting daily, via video conference, to focus on the college’s preparedness and response to the coronavirus pandemic.
 
For the latest information, follow the CDC link: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/index.html
 

Coronavirus Response:   

Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer has issued a "Stay Home, Stay Safe" executive order for the State of Michigan and the college is beginning a full campus shut down as of 12:01 a.m. on March 24, 2020. In response to the order:

  • All of the college’s buildings are closed to the public through April 13. The order prohibits in-person work that is nt necessary to sustain or protect life. College faculty and staff are working remotely and will respond to messaging as they are able.
  • Online academic instruction will continue until the end of the semester, May 1.
  • A limited number of laptops are available, by loan for student use only, on a first-come first served basis. Call 231-843-5570, or email the help desk at helpdesk@westshore.edu, by 6 p.m., for more information. No requests will be accepted after today.
  • If you are (or you know) a student with any kind of personal or academic need arising from the Coronavirus outbreak, please request CARE
  • Team assistance by completing the Coronavirus CARE form.
  • Registration for the summer and fall semesters has been postponed until further notice.
  • All college sponsored public events or community meetings, through April 30, have been cancelled or postponed until further notice.
  • Pending further actions by the governor’s office and Michigan Department of Health, after April 13, parts of the campus will be staffed in-person Monday-Friday, from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m., through the end of the semester.
  • Following guidance from the CDC, as well as state and local public health authorities, a task force is meeting daily, via video conference, to focus on the college’s preparedness and response to the coronavirus pandemic.
  • For the latest information, follow the CDC link.
 
March 20, 2020:
 
Campus Update:
 
  • For the health and safety of West Shore Community College Community students and staff, effective Friday, March 20, any remaining face-to-face instruction has been suspended through April 5. Online academic instruction will continue until the end of the semester.
  • With an appointment, support services will continue to be offered to students on an emergency basis only. No family members will be admitted to the college’s buildings if an appointment is granted and appropriate measures will be enforced to protect the health of students and college employees.
  • Many of the college staff are working remotely and there are limited services in many of the college’s departments. Students should call ahead to determine if the services they need are available.
  • All of the college’s buildings are closed to the public through March 30.
  • All college sponsored public events or community meetings, through April 21, have been cancelled or postponed until further notice.
  • The college has installed free Wi-Fi access, for public use, in parking lots near the Tech Center, Arts and Sciences Center, and Recreation Center.
  • Online research resources can be accessed by viewing the library web site.
  • Pending further actions by the Michigan Department of Health, parts of the campus will be staffed in-person Monday-Friday, from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m., through the end of the semester.
  • Following guidance from the CDC, as well as state and local public health authorities, a task force is meeting daily to focus on preparedness and response to the coronavirus pandemic. Check the web site daily for updates.
  • For the latest information, follow the CDC link.
 
March 19, 2020:
 
News Release:
 

Contact: Thomas A. Hawley, Executive Director of College Relations
Phone: 231/843-5803
E-mail: tahawley@westshore.edu
Web Site: www.westshore.edu

Date: March 19, 2020
Re: WSCC Goes Online – Buildings are Closed

SCOTTVILLE - President Scott Ward announced today, for the health and safety of West Shore Community College Community students and staff, effective Friday, March 20, any remaining face-to-face instruction has been suspended through April 5. Online academic instruction will continue until the end of the semester.

With an appointment, support services will continue to be offered to students on an emergency basis only. No family members will be admitted to the college’s buildings if an appointment is granted and appropriate measures will be enforced to protect the health of students and college employees.

Many of the college staff are working remotely and there are limited services in many of the college’s departments. Students should call ahead to determine if the services they need are available.

Currently, all of the college’s buildings are closed to the public through March 30. Online research resources can be accessed by viewing the library web site. The college has installed free Wi-Fi access, for public use, in parking lots near the Tech Center, Arts and Sciences Center, and Recreation Center.

“Our status will be reevaluated prior to March 30, at which time a decision will be made to either resume some operations or extend our closure,” said Ward. “I recognize the disappointments and challenges with the decisions we are making and the great uncertainty for the weeks ahead. We are doing our best to make appropriate decisions based on quickly evolving information.”

Pending further actions by the Michigan Department of Health, parts of the campus will be staffed in-person Monday-Friday, from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m., through the end of the semester.

All college sponsored public events or community meetings, through April 21, have been cancelled or postponed until further notice.
Following guidance from the CDC, as well as state and local public health authorities, a task force is meeting daily to focus on preparedness and response to the coronavirus pandemic.

For the latest information, follow the CDC link: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/index.html 

The college is providing updates on a WSCC website link –– www.westshore.edu/coronavirus that is updated as information becomes available.

 

March 17, 2020:
 
News Release: 

Contact: Thomas A. Hawley, Executive Director of College Relations
Phone: 231/843-5803
E-mail: tahawley@westshore.edu
Web Site: www.westshore.edu

Date: March 17, 2020
Re: WSCC Campus Closes to the Public

SCOTTVILLE - To curb the potential spread of the coronavirus, West Shore Community College officials have decided to close all of the buildings to the public, through March 30, with the exception of students who have an appointment or are completing an approved lab section.

WSCC is reopening the campus tomorrow to students, by appointment only, who need to access support services. Appropriate measures will be enforced to protect the health of students and college employees. There are limited services in many of the college’s departments and students are urged to call ahead to determine if the services they need are available.

Following recommendations from the Center for Disease Control and state public health officials, in-person labs will be limited to 10 or fewer students. Students should work directly with their instructor for further instructions on how their classes will be conducted.

The Learning and Testing Center and a computer lab will be open and students should email or call to make an appointment. The library has been closed and online resources can be accessed by viewing the library web site.

Pending further actions by the Michigan Department of Health, the campus will be staffed in-person Monday-Friday, from 9 a.m. – 5 p.m., through the end of the semester, with many employees transitioning to working remotely.

All college sponsored public events or community meetings, through April 21, have been cancelled or postponed until further notice.

In support of the college’s decision to close buildings, the Michigan State University Extension office, located in the Recreation Center, is closed and extension staff will be working remotely and can be reached via email or phone.

The entire college campus was closed to the public, on Monday and Tuesday, to provide faculty and staff the time to move course content online. Classes already offered online will continue as planned.

“We are doing our best to maintain operations, however, staff have been instructed to work from home whenever possible. I want to thank our dedicated faculty and staff who are doing all they can to ensure students graduate on time and receive their degrees or certificates this spring,” said President Scott Ward.

Following guidance from the CDC, as well as state and local public health authorities, a task force is meeting daily to focus on preparedness and response to the coronavirus pandemic.

For the latest information, follow this CDC link: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/index.html

The college is providing updates on a WSCC website link –– www.westshore.edu/coronavirus that is updated as information becomes available.

 
March 16, 2020:
 
News Release:
 
Contact:  Thomas A. Hawley, Executive Director of College Relations
Phone:  231/843-5803
E-mail: tahawley@westshore.edu 
Web Site: www.westshore.edu

Date:  March 16, 2020
Re: WSCC Rec Center and Ice Arena to remain closed
 
SCOTTVILLE - West Shore Community College officials have extended the closure of the Recreation Center and West Shore Community Ice Arena until March 30. The college’s bookstore and café are also closed.
 
Governor Whitmer’s Executive Order 2020-9, which was signed this morning, requires places of public accommodation to be closed including cafes, gymnasiums, fitness centers, recreation centers, indoor sports facilities, indoor exercise facilities, and exercise studios.
 
In addition, all college sponsored public events, through April 21, have been cancelled or postponed.
 
The entire college campus, including the Recreation Center and ice arena, are closed to the public today and Tuesday, March 17, to provide faculty and staff the opportunity to prepare for course content to be moved online. The Board of Trustees meeting, on Monday evening, will be held as scheduled and is open to the public.
 
Unless otherwise specified, after March 17, the campus will remain open for staff, and business operations will continue with appropriate measures in place to protect the health of college employees. There will be limited services in some of the college’s departments.
 
A leadership team is collaborating daily, focusing on preparedness and response, following guidance from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as well as state and local public health authorities. For the latest information, follow this CDC link: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/index.html
 
The college will provide updates on a WSCC website link –– www.westshore.edu/coronavirus that is updated as information becomes available.

 

March 13, 2020 Update:

News Release:
 
Contact:  Thomas A. Hawley, Executive Director of College Relations
Phone:  231/843-5803
E-mail: tahawley@westshore.edu 
Web Site: www.westshore.edu
Date:  March 13, 2020
Re: WSCC moving to online classes

SCOTTVILLE –West Shore Community College is cancelling classes for Monday and Tuesday, March 16 and 17, and then moving most face-to-face classes to an online format beginning Wednesday, March 18. This move is anticipated to last until the end of the winter semester, but is subject to change as the as the spread of the Coronavirus, also known as COVID-19, evolves.

The entire college campus, including the Recreation Center and Ice Arena, will be closed to the public on Monday and Tuesday, March 16 and 17, to provide faculty and staff the opportunity to prepare for course content to be online. The Board of Trustees meeting, on Monday evening, will be held as scheduled and is open to the public.

“The health and safety of our campus community, along with our surrounding communities is our highest priority,” said WSCC President Scott Ward.

“There are many unknowns as this public health issue continues, and it has presented us with many challenges. We are doing all we can to continue offering our services and fulfill our primary mission of providing students the education they need.”

Ward said the College is taking these steps after speaking with Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and state authorities, who offered guidelines to higher education leaders following Tuesday’s declaration of a state of emergency.

Effective Monday, March 16, most WSCC sponsored and/or community events will be canceled or postponed.

Unless otherwise specified, after March 17, the campus will remain open for staff, and business operations will continue with appropriate measures in place to protect the health of college employees. There may be limited services in some of the college’s departments.

A leadership team is collaborating daily, focusing on preparedness and response, following guidance from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention as well as state and local public health authorities. For the latest information, follow this CDC link:

The college will provide updates on a WSCC website link –– www.westshore.edu/coronavirus that is updated as information becomes available.
 
Letter to Students:
 
West Shore Community College Students:
 
The situation surrounding the Coronavirus (COVID-19) continues to change rapidly. Last night, Governor Whitmer ordered all K-12 schools in Michigan to be closed beginning Monday, March 16, for a period of three weeks. Following the guidance of her office and of healthcare officials, we have decided to increase the precautions we are taking at West Shore Community College. In short, we have decided to move the vast majority of our remaining instruction online, which will begin after a brief delay while we migrate content. All classes will be cancelled on Monday and Tuesday, March 16 and 17, to give us time to create and upload content to our online system. Most classes will then resume in an online format on Wednesday, March 18.
 
Faculty will be communicating with students regarding exceptions to this policy, as well as to provide further instructions about how classes will be conducted in the new online format. In certain exceptional cases, small or individual face-to-face instructional sessions may be permitted, such as with laboratory sections that require special equipment or have face-to-face requirements from regulatory agencies. These will be evaluated on a case-by-case and ongoing basis, however, and are subject to change as the situation develops. Again, students are urged to work directly with their instructors to understand the unique circumstances surrounding each of their classes.
 
The college campus will be closed to the public on Monday and Tuesday, March 16 and 17, in order to provide faculty and staff with time to plan this migration. This closure includes the Ice Arena and Recreation Center. The Board of Trustees meeting at 4:00 on Monday is still open to public attendance. Further decisions regarding campus availability after these dates will be made and announced early next week. WSCC officials are working diligently to provide students with spaces to complete their online coursework on our campus, but final determinations about availability have not yet been made.
 
In order to assist students who are heavily impacted by this decision, the college has set up a new form that allows students to report extenuating personal or academic needs to college officials. Managed by the Campus Assessment, Response, and Evaluation (CARE) Team, this form is available here. Remember also that a webpage is available to provide students with additional information about the virus and WSCC’s response at www.westshore.edu/coronavirus.
 
Lastly, I urge all of you to take this outbreak seriously. Avoid public spaces, wash your hands, and stay isolated at home if you become sick. Remember that you can transmit this disease even if you have not begun exhibiting symptoms, so everyone should take extra precautions even if you are feeling fine. This is a serious illness that is having widespread ramifications across our nation. All indications, however, are that we are only at the very beginning of what we will collectively experience. Be smart.
 
Mark Kinney
Vice President of Academics and Student Services
West Shore Community College
 

March 12, 2020 Update:

List of Canceled Events:
 
To ensure the safety of students, employees and guests, and to comply with the recommendations set by the Michigan Department of Public Health, WSCC is canceling or postponing on-campus events that meet or approach the 100-person threshold for large gatherings:

March 2020

Cancelled – March 15 – High School Art Competition Reception, 2 p.m., Center Stage Theater
 
Cancelled - March 17 – Grad Fair, 10 a.m. – 5:30 p.m., Schoenherr Campus Center

April 2020

Cancelled  - April 7 – Employee Recognition, 7:30 a.m., North Lounge, Administrative & Conf Bldg

Postponed  - April 9 – WSCC Jazz Ensemble, 7:30 p.m., Center Stage Theater*

Postponed - April 13 – WSCC Wind Symphony & Percussion Ensemble, 7:30 p.m., Manistee High School Auditorium*

Cancelled - April 18 – Nursing Class 2020 Family Fun Walk/Run, WSCC Campus

Postponed - April 21 – Concert Choir, 2 p.m., Center Stage Theater*

*Rehearsal sessions for the Wind Symphony, Percussion Ensemble, Concert Choir, and Jazz Band have been suspended for the remainder of the semester. Their public concerts have been postponed and may be rescheduled at a later date.
 
Public Service Announcement:
 
Contact:  Thomas A. Hawley, Executive Director of College Relations
Phone:  231/843-5803
E-mail: tahawley@westshore.edu 
Web Site: www.westshore.edu
Date: March 12, 2020
Re: COVID-19 virtual screenings offered by Spectrum Health – Ludington Hospital
 
LUDINGTON - Spectrum Health Ludington Hospital is taking several precautionary steps to keep the community safe and prepared. As a service to the community, the hospital is offering free COVID-19 virtual screenings 24/7 to people in the state of Michigan who are experiencing symptoms at 616.391.2380. If you have severe or life-threatening symptoms, please call 911.
 
The hospital has compiled several resources to help you stay informed and prepared. To view this information and access resources, please visit the following link:  https://www.spectrumhealth.org/covid19
 
The hospital has updated the family and visitor policy. Spectrum Health will be enforcing the following family and visitor restrictions at all of its hospitals:
 
  • No children under the age of 12 will be allowed to visit Spectrum Health hospitals during this time for their safety.
  • Visitors, including family members, will be limited to one person per patient. Two visitors will be allowed for pediatric (children under the age of 18) and maternity patients.
  • Visitors and family members must be healthy and without symptoms of illness.
  • Visitors and family members who have recently traveled internationally to countries that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention include in their COVID-19 travel warnings will not be permitted to visit.

Manistee - Due to the Corona Virus (COVID-19), Munson Healthcare Manistee Hospital  has implemented a change in their Visitor Policy effective immediately for student who are utilizing the education center for classes.

For student safety as well as the safety of our staff and patients, students will be restricted to just the education center until further notice. This means students should enter/exit the building using the doors of the education center only and should NOT enter the hospital portion of the building unless they are seeking care for themselves. This restriction also means students should refrain from coming into the cafeteria area before/during/after their classes.
 
Should you have any questions please do not hesitate to contact myself or Julie Mueller in our Marketing/Communications department. We appreciate your understanding of this change in policy and we will inform you when any changes to this new policy are made.
 
Karen Miller
Executive Secretary & Medical Staff Coordinator
Munson Healthcare Manistee Hospital
 
WSCC News Release:

Contact:  Thomas A. Hawley, Executive Director of College Relations
Phone:  231/843-5803
E-mail: tahawley@westshore.edu 
Web Site: www.westshore.edu
Date:  March 12, 2020
Re: WSCC Responding to Coronavirus Situation
 
SCOTTVILLE - West Shore Community College officials are taking steps to move many of its classes online for the remainder of the semester and is postponing or canceling some events scheduled in the next several weeks due to the developing coronavirus situation.

Yesterday, President Scott Ward appointed a task force to meet on a daily basis to monitor the changing situation and provide recommendations to mitigate the impact on students, employees, and the public. The work is being coordinated with K-12 schools and community partners.

Based on recommendations from the Michigan Department of Public Health, the college task force is taking steps to cancel or postpone public events with over 100 people, including conferences and community events; reducing in-person gatherings and activities, especially for organizations with individuals at risk of severe illness; where feasible, offering tele-learning or tele-work opportunities; and limiting non-essential work travel.

Currently, the faculty are working to transition many classes to virtual online learning, when feasible, through the remainder of the semester.

“We are committed to successfully completing the semester, whether instruction is face-to-face or online, and to ensure our students’ progress towards a degree and graduation,” said Dr. Mark Kinney, Vice President of Academics and Student Services.

He added, “The College is supporting and encouraging any faculty member who elects to take their courses online at this time. As of this moment, we are not requiring all classes to go online, nor do we have immediate plans to close the campus.”

To mitigate the possibility of spreading the virus, the weekend reception for students who are participating in the High School Art Competition exhibit, scheduled for Sunday afternoon, March 15, has been cancelled, and a Graduate Fair to be held on March 17, in the Schoenherr Campus Center, has also been cancelled. In addition, the nursing class-sponsored family fun walk/run, scheduled for April 18, has also been cancelled.

Rehearsal sessions for the Wind Symphony, Percussion Ensemble, Concert Choir, and Jazz Band have been suspended for the remainder of the semester.
 
The following public concerts have been postponed and may be rescheduled at a later date:
  • April 9 - Jazz Band- Center Stage Theater
  • April 13 - Wind Symphony and Percussion Ensemble - Manistee High School
  • April 21 - Concert Choir - Center Stage Theater
“Public health authorities are trying to stop the virus from spreading further by restricting travel and, if necessary, introducing quarantines,” said WSCC President Scott Ward. “Their expertise will serve as the basis for continuous updates on how the college responds locally to the coronavirus situation.”

WSCC is maintaining a webpage to communicate future updates relating to the Coronavirus, which can be found at www.westshore.edu/coronavirus.
 

Letter to Students:

West Shore Community College Students:
 
As confirmed cases of COVID-19 (Coronavirus) continue to spread across the country, I feel it is important for us all to take action to minimize the impact this global pandemic will have on our college, our community, and our collective health and well-being. The latest tallies by the Center for Disease Control (CDC) show 938 confirmed cases across 38 states and the District of Columbia, including 29 deaths (https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/cases-in-us.html#reporting-cases). We know that this outbreak is going to get much worse before it gets better, however, and the number of cases continues to escalate today.
 
With that in mind, I am supporting and encouraging all faculty to voluntarily take their courses online for the remainder of the semester. Please note that WSCC has not decided to force all classes to go online, so many courses are currently planning to continue meeting in a face-to-face format. This is a rapidly changing situation, however, so please be on the lookout for communication from your instructors indicating if your courses will be meeting online before you travel to campus. Furthermore, I have asked all instructors to work with students who elect not to come to class either due to a concern for their safety or due to illness. If you are such an individual, please reach out to your instructor directly to proactively work with them on a plan.
 
If at all possible, WSCC plans to continue on-campus operations to provide student supports such as tutoring and computer lab access. We are implementing additional precautions to sanitize workstations before and after each user and to ensure sufficient spacing between users. Our hope is that, if you do not have access to a computer or the Internet at home, you will still have space on our campus where you can meet the requirements of your online classes. However, if the situation worsens and we are forced to move entirely online or close the campus, we will reassess the supports we are able to provide. In some cases, it may also become necessary to issue Incomplete grades or Withdrawals from classes. If you believe this is necessary in your case, please work directly with your instructor to make proactive arrangements.
 
Lastly, WSCC has elected to cancel numerous upcoming events and to suspend all employee travel outside of our immediate service district. The full list of canceled events will be made available on our Coronavirus webpage at www.westshore.edu/coronavirus. If you have an upcoming event, be sure you check this page before making arrangements to attend. At this time, no decision has been made as to whether Commencement or the Student Awards Ceremony will be held, so be on the lookout for additional communication in the coming days and weeks regarding the status of these events.
 
These are extremely difficult and challenging times for all of us, and I fear that the worst is still ahead for us as a nation. Please exercise an abundance of caution in every action you take. Be careful of public spaces like busy grocery stores. Wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water, and cover your cough and sneeze with your elbow. Avoid touching your face with unwashed hands. With your support and vigilance, and with the tireless work of WSCC faculty and staff, we will get through this and will do everything we can to help you reach your educational goals. I will send additional communications as more information becomes available and decisions are made.
 
Mark Kinney, Ed.D.
Vice President of Academics and Student Services
West Shore Community College
 
Michigan Department of Labor and Economic Opportunity Update:

Following the announcement of the state’s first presumptive positive cases of COVID-19, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer and the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services (MDHHS) are providing recommendations designed to help prevent the spread of the virus. These recommendations apply at the individual, organizational, and community levels. They apply to businesses, workplaces, schools, community organizations, health care institutions, and individuals of all ages, backgrounds, and health profiles; everyone has an important role to play. Please take a moment to review the Interim Recommendations to Mitigate the Spread of COVID-19 (March 11, 2020). Information about this outbreak is changing rapidly. You can stay informed by regularly visiting Michigan.gov/Coronavirus and CDC.gov/Coronavirus.

March 11, 2020:

Original Story:

West Shore Community College is closely monitoring the Coronavirus (COIVD-19) situation. This is a respiratory illness that can spread from person to person. Tens of thousands of cases have been confirmed around the world. While we have not had any reported cases in our region we want you to know the college is monitoring the latest information. Authorities are trying to stop the virus from spreading further, including restriction of travel and introducing quarantines. The following tips will help to reduce the likelihood of contracting the virus and spreading this disease, as well as influenza.

Coronavirus Facts

Prevention

  • The following are CDC guidelines.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after using the restroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
  • Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Please note, that WSCC has alcohol-based sanitizer dispensers located throughout our buildings.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • If you are sick, please stay home and avoid contact with others. If you need to stay home sick, please contact your professors and let them know if possible.
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or upper sleeve when coughing or sneezing.

The health and safety of our WSCC campus community, along with our surrounding communities is our highest priority. To help assist with this effort, the WSCC Student Senate will be purchasing and distributing additional hand sanitizers for placement around the campus. Dispensers are also located near restroom facilities. For those of you who may be traveling during the Spring Break, please use the same precautions as outlined in this memo.

It is difficult to predict how this particular virus will develop. More than anything else, this means uncertainty. Even though the symptoms are only mild in most cases, the number of severe infections cautions us to take the situation seriously. In the meantime, we have to do all we can to slow the further spread of the virus and to minimize its impact. WSCC will continue to monitor the situation and post updates as the situation continues to evolve.