As fall term begins, Transylvania students get lesson on COVID-19 basics

Along with traditional subjects like English and physics, a little virology is on tap this fall at Transylvania University.

As part of the Healthy at Transy initiative, which prioritizes individual empowerment and community responsibility, students are learning coronavirus basics to help stop its spread.

“They seem to understand that we’re all in this together, and the more education we have, the better we’re able to take care of our Transy family,” said Ashley Hill, assistant dean of students and director of student wellbeing.

By tomorrow, they are required to complete an online, multimedia course called “Staying Healthy in a Changing Environment.” The lesson, which includes quizzes, goes over university policies that students need to know — such as having to fill out a daily self-screening health pass — and some fundamentals like “What is a coronavirus?”

The university has gotten a good response to the lesson, with more than 100 students filling it out the first day they received it, Hill said.

Other COVID-19 educational efforts include social media posts by various offices, campuswide signage, regular emails and a housing and residence life newsletter.

Also, in preparation for the beginning of fall term today, students have formally committed to campus safety measures through a Transy Together social contract.

Hill encourages students to reach out to staff if they need anything during these strange times. “I just want them to know that we care about them so much and we miss them,” she said. “We are here to help you — we want to make sure that this is the best semester that we can possibly provide.”

Student-athletes are getting additional COVID-19 education specific to sports. For instance, Vice President for Athletics Holly Sheilley recently hosted a Google Meet with players, touching on a wide range of topics, from using hand sanitizer after working out to limiting the number of people on van rides to which doors to use when entering the Fourth Street Athletics Complex.

“More than ever it’s really important for us to grab a hold of the motto that we have in athletics, which is: We. Us. Together. Family. One. Wings Up!” Sheilley said.

Get the details on how Transylvania Athletics is adapting to the pandemic.

In addition to students, Transylvania faculty and staff will soon be taking an online training that goes over COVID-19 basics and what they can do to help stop the spread.