Rhodes President Marjorie Hass announced the college is planning to welcome some students back to campus for Spring 2021 and that classes will be a mix of in-person and remote learning.
Rhodes is committed to maintaining a safe environment by remaining low density and implementing a comprehensive health and safety plan developed with our partners at Baptist Memorial Health Care that focuses on regular testing, masking, isolating and quarantining, and contact tracing.
Rhodes community members may call the Baptist Help Desk at (901) 227-7777 or (888) 838-3777 or contact them by email at IS.Support@bmhcc.org.
What is Rhodes doing to prevent the spread of COVID-19?
Rhodes College has formed a partnership with Baptist Memorial Health Care to provide comprehensive health services to the campus. The college’s plan to return to campus is based on advice from experts in COVID-19 care and prevention.
The college has established policies and procedures for regular testing, prevention, masking, distancing, symptom monitoring, and tracing.
Will Rhodes require regular testing?
Yes. On-Campus Initial Testing – All Faculty, Staff and Students (Residential and Non-Residential) will be required to be tested during our on-campus Initial Testing and then weekly during the spring semester. Faculty, staff and students who are fully remote will not be required to be tested regularly.
The testing program includes a lower-nasal self-swab, provided through our partnership with Baptist Memorial Health Care, that is collected at a central campus location, with results expected back within 24 hours.
Any residential student with a positive test will be immediately isolated in a dedicated residential space and will receive medical, emotional, dining, academic, and residential life team support. Non-residential students, staff, faculty with a positive test will be required to self-quarantine at home and will not be permitted to come to campus until medically cleared. Students will be medically cleared by the Director of Health Services, Adora Browne. Faculty and Staff will be medically cleared through Human Resources.
You may be required to be tested at additional times based on exposure or symptom monitoring as determined by Director of Health Services Adora Browne or Dean of Students Alicia Golston in partnership with Baptist. If you are exhibiting symptoms, contact Campus Safety at (901) 843-3880 for further directions on scheduling testing.
Will residential students be tested for COVID-19 when they arrive on campus?
Yes. All students will be tested when they return to campus.
Prior to Arrival Campus
Residential students will be assigned a move-in date and time (2-hour block) along with a same day testing appointment. Students who cannot arrive during their assigned time may contact the Office of Residence Life at email@example.com to request an alternate move-in time.
All residential students are required to be tested and determined negative in the 14 days before returning to campus. Students will be required to upload the results of the test via Medicat.
Questions or concerns about how to upload documents should be directed to Director of Health Services, Adora Browne at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Students will be permitted on campus 30 minutes prior to their assigned move-in block and will be asked to complete symptom monitoring via the My Chart App. Each student will be permitted two guests to assist them with move-in. Students and guests will all be required to complete symptom monitoring before they are permitted to access to testing and residence hall check-in.
Move-In Day Testing will occur upon arrival and prior to students’ residence hall check-in. Students will be tested and then proceed to their assigned residence hall. Students will be required to social distance and isolate to the extent possible in their assigned rooms while waiting for their test results (2-3 days likely). Students will be permitted to pick up meals to eat in their rooms during this time. The Director of Health Services, Adora Browne, will review all results, and students with a positive test result with receive specific instructions and follow up about isolation requirements.
Ongoing Student Testing
Students will be required to be tested weekly, and at additional times based on exposure or symptom monitoring as determined by Director of Health Services, Adora Browne, or Dean of Students, Alicia Golston, in partnership with Baptist. Students exhibiting symptoms should, contact Campus Safety at (901) 843-3880, for further instructions.
COVID-19 Test Type
Currently, we are using a nasopharyngeal mid-turbinate swab. As testing continues to advance, the College may employ other types of testing and testing strategies as need arises and the accuracy and reliability of various techniques evolve.
Do I need to be tested and isolate before arriving on-campus?
Pre-Arrival Testing Residential Students - All residential students will need to be tested and determined negative in the 14 days before returning to campus. Students will be required to upload the results of the test via Medicat. Questions or concerns about how to upload documents should be directed to Director of Health Services, Adora Browne.
PCR tests are preferred and recommended. However, we recognize that access to testing is limited to antigen testing in some locations. We will accept either form of testing.
Once arriving on campus students will also be tested as part of our on-campus initial testing. While students are awaiting the results of on-campus initial testing, they will be asked to participate in social distancing and isolation to the extent possible.
Will symptom monitoring be required?
Upon arrival all faculty, staff and students will be required to complete daily symptom monitoring via the MyChart app.
To activate your MyChart account
1. Go to https://mychart.baptistonecare.org
2. Click “Sign Up Now, under New User.”
3. Click “Sign Up Online, under No Activation Code.”
4. Enter the requested information and click “Submit.”
6. Once you login to the MyChart app and locate the Symptom Checker, use “Employee COVID-19 Screening” and begin daily symptom tracking with the app.
For questions or issues, contact the Baptist Healthcare Help Desk: (901) 227-7777 or IS.Support@bmhcc.org
What happens if a member of the community has COVID-19 symptoms?
Students should contact Health Services to schedule an appointment. More information for symptomatic students can be found here.
Faculty and staff who are exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19, call Baptist at 901-227-3305 to schedule a test. Consult the Employee COVID-19 Checklist for more information.
Members of the community are expected to quarantine until the test results come back.
Will members of the Rhodes community be required to get flu shots before returning to campus?
Yes. All community members are required to get a flu shot before returning to campus. Students will be required to submit proof of their flu shot via the Medicat portal. Questions or concerns about how to upload documents should be directed to Director of Health Services, Adora Browne.
How will move-in day work?
First-year students will move in on Thursday, January 21 and all returning students will move-in on Sunday, January 24. All students should have received communication from Residence Life with their assigned move-in time block.
What if I miss my on-campus test?
If you miss your weekly test, then you should report to the testing site as soon as possible to be tested. The site will be open Monday, Tuesday, and Wednesday 11:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.
If you have missed your weekly test and the testing site is no longer open, then you will be required to email email@example.com for further instructions. If you miss a weekly, then you may be required to return home to your permanent address and complete your semester coursework remotely.
I'm a student. When is my initial testing?
You should have already received information from Residence Life about your Move-In Block time, which will also serve as your testing time. When you arrive on campus, you will proceed directly to the BCLC to be tested. Consult the Asymptomatic Testing Schedule for more information.
Non-residential students will be required to report for testing Monday, Jan 25th or Tuesday, Jan 26th. You may have already received information from MyChart about your testing time. Please review the information below to determine when you should report. You should report for testing per your assigned MyChart time. If you cannot attend at that time, please report at your assigned MyChart time then report anytime between 11 a.m. – 5 p.m. on Monday or Tuesday. When you arrive on campus you will proceed directly to the BCLC to be tested.
If you don't know what type of student you are (residential, non-residential, remote):
Email the Student Life team at firstname.lastname@example.org and we can assist you.
What day will I have my weekly asymptomatic testing?
All residential and non-residential students will be required to be asymptomatic testing weekly. Consult the Asymptomatic Testing Schedule for more information. The testing date you are assigned will be your day of the week moving forward. You should report for testing per your assigned MyChart time. If you cannot attend at that time, please report at your assigned MyChart time then report anytime between 11am-5pm on Monday or Tuesday.
What will MyChart notifications look like?
All students, faculty, and staff will receive appointment notifications via MyChart through email or as an app notification. If you cannot come at the assigned MyChart time, you may come to be tested at any time during the posted testing center hours on your assigned day.
Faculty or staff who have questions about their testing time should email HR@rhodes.edu.
Students who have questions about their testing time should email email@example.com or call 901.843.3815
What if I am registered in an in-person class and I need to be isolated or quarantined?
In the event that students registered in face-to-face classes need to be isolated or quarantined, students should share that with their professors via email immediately. The COVID-19 Care Team will also share that information directly with impacted faculty. Faculty members who need to make changes to their classroom situation or needs should alert Associate Provost Dr. Tim Heubner to support any needed changes. The faculty instructor should also contact firstname.lastname@example.org to be connected to the Instructional Technology team for support. “When in doubt, give a shout, to email@example.com.”
The Instructional Technology team has Hyflex contingency plans, equipment, and support structures ready to deploy. They have also created a Hyflex faculty cohort so that faculty can benefit from their shared experiences and tech knowledge. Additionally, Instructional Tech Office Hours will be held weekly to provide continued faculty support.
Where can I find the latest information about public health conditions in Memphis?
What symptoms should I look for/will you be monitoring?
Based on CDC and Baptist guidance:
- Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
- Repeated shaking with chills
- Muscle pain
- Sore throat
- New loss of taste or smell
- New onset of fatigue
- New onset of congestion or runny nose
- New onset of nausea, vomiting or diarrhea
- Recent international travel
- Exposure to someone who has COVID-19
Is the college requiring the use of masks or face coverings on campus?
Yes. Our Baptist partners have advised us that all members of our community will need to wear masks while indoors, even when physically distanced. Members of the campus community will be provided one Rhodes mask, but you should plan to bring additional cloth masks. The college will also be procuring disposable masks through our partnership with Baptist.
In addition to our campus policies, Rhodes is also subject to the Memphis and Shelby County ordinances requiring indoor mask use.
Public health officials say wearing a mask is one of the best ways to prevent the spread of COVID-19.
Does the college have space for quarantine and isolation?
Yes. The college has identified quarantine rooms for students living on campus. Non-residential students, faculty, and staff should plan to isolate and quarantine at their home or off-campus location.
Academics & Course Delivery
How will courses be delivered in spring?
Rhodes is planning to offer a mix of in-person and remote classes in the spring. Students can view the course schedule in BannerWeb to see the method of course delivery, listed under the course “location.” Students should work with their advisor on planning their spring schedule. Most students’ schedules will probably be a mix of “in-person” and remote classes.
Remote courses will mostly be taught in a “synchronous” fashion, meaning that the professor and students will gather virtually and simultaneously. Some portions of these remote-only classes may also have “asynchronous” (non-simultaneous) components, such as readings, videos, assignments, or other material posted online that students may engage with on their own time.
In-person courses will be taught in classrooms that allow for social distancing. All students will be seated in tablet armchairs, spaced six feet apart. Because gathering students close together, around tables, or in a circle would violate CDC guidelines, all furniture arrangements in classrooms will considered “fixed.” Tape on the floor indicates the required position of the furniture. All rooms have a new maximum capacity, posted on the classroom door. All class participants, including the professor, will be masked.
We have learned a great deal about remote teaching that will improve both remote and in-person learning. Some faculty members, for example, are now recording short videos for classes, which students watch in advance. This allows us to make better use of class time, regardless of course delivery.
If students are coming back to campus, why will so many classes be delivered remotely?
Remote classes allow us to de-densify our campus and protect the health and safety of our entire community. Preserving remote courses thus makes it less likely that we need to lock down or shut down our campus.
Remote classes also allow faculty to work with students in small groups – a teaching style that will not be possible in the socially-distanced classrooms described above. Faculty whose classes rely heavily on small group work will be offered remotely. This allows us to preserve the intimacy of the Rhodes academic experience.
Remote classes are most accessible to all of our students – regardless of where they are living. -- including our at-home students and international students who cannot make it to campus.
Finally, remote classes will make it easier for students to keep up if they need to be quarantined or isolated.
Why are so many science labs being offered remotely?
Labs require close interaction between faculty and students, so our capacity for students in labs has been significantly reduced. In order to protect health and safety and ensure the quality of the academic experience, many of our labs will continue to be offered remotely. Virtual instruction allows for easy collaborative work through features such as Zoom “breakout rooms.” Our lab scientists have distinct plans to ensure the best possible remote experiences for our students:
- Chemistry: Given safe distancing requirements and the need to accommodate student who will not be with us in-person, Chemistry is offering a combination of in-person and remote labs. This semester has allowed us to refine our remote lab experience into one which has been effective. Experimental techniques are demonstrated by pre-recorded video demonstrations done by Rhodes professors. Students collect some of the experimental data as they watch the demonstrations, and these are supplemented with mock data in some cases. Collaborative aspects of each lab course are maintained via breakout rooms in Zoom, small group video conferencing, and writing of lab reports. Students who take a remote lab will have opportunities to get hands-on training in more advanced laboratory classes.
- Physics: Three courses with laboratory components will be offered in the spring (2021): Introductory Physics, Astronomy and Electronics. Students in Introductory Physics lab and Astronomy lab will work collaboratively via breakout rooms in Zoom to generate lab reports based on measurements/observations they make by manipulating computer simulations of physical and astronomical phenomena. Astronomy lab will include independent naked-eye observations of motions of the Sun, Moon, planets and stars over the course of the semester. Students in electronics will receive an equipment suite that contains all components and instrumentation necessary to complete circuit and measurement laboratories. These labs will be completed independently but with group zoom sessions for guidance and assistance from peers and the instructor.
- Geology: Students will have a variety of videos, pictures, and interactive three-dimensional models to explore, not only of rocks and minerals but also of maps, structures, earthquake data, and fossils. Students will apply geology, GIS, and geography to applications associated with climate change, hazards, historical landscape processes, and scenarios for the future.
- Biology: Professors will be using a variety of approaches that allow for experimental design, hypothesis formation, simulations, data analysis, data reduction, statistical analysis, and scientific communication—all remotely delivered. To help students manage the “hands on” components of lab, our Biology faculty will hold voluntary workshops in the evenings to support student skill-building in the lab environment.
- Neuroscience: As an interdisciplinary field, Neuroscience relies on hypothesis-driven data analysis, computational modeling, and computer simulations. Remote labs this semester will focus on these areas of the field, increasing individual exposure to cutting-edge experimental techniques. Due to the shared specialized equipment we use in our labs such as electrophysiology stations and robotic kits, COVID-friendly in person labs are nearly impossible. However, with simulations each student has the opportunity to experience the unique aspects of the experimental process individually.
What will the spring calendar look like?
The spring calendar has been set.
First-Year Student Move-in will begin on Thursday, January 21, 2021
Orientation for New Students will begin on Saturday, January 23, 2021
Returning Student Move-in will begin on Sunday, January 24, 2021
Classes begin on Wednesday, January 27, 2021
Spring Break/Easter Recess begins on Wednesday, March 31, 2021 at 10 p.m.
The full academic calendar is available here.
How will students be able to add/drop classes?
Registration for spring 2021 re-opens Monday, January 25, at 12:01 a.m. (Sunday at midnight!), and students will be able to add classes to their schedule, based on availability, until Tuesday, February 2. Students should consult with their advisor before making schedule changes.
How will professors handle office hours?
Faculty members will continue to meet students on a regular basis, just as they normally would. These meetings will happen either in-person or remotely, depending on the course and the faculty member. Some in-person office hours might need to occur in rooms other than the faculty member’s office, to provide for social distancing. Remote office hours might happen via Zoom, FaceTime, or telephone.
Will there be designated study spaces on campus for students who need a place to log into their remote classes?
In addition to the studying in the Library, classrooms have been designated as “study rooms” for studying between courses and completing remote courses. These classrooms are available on a first-come, first-served basis for two-hour time blocks. See the list below:
- Buckman 325
- Buckman 330
- Clough 300
- Clough 304
- Clough 313
- Kennedy 104
- Southwestern 203
- Southwestern 211
Student Life and Support
Will the college be providing academic support services?
The full range of student academic support services—including academic counseling, peer tutoring and peer coaching—will continue to be offered through the Office of Academic and Learning Resources. For more information, please contact Jamia Stokes, firstname.lastname@example.org, or Melissa Campbell, email@example.com.
Do off-campus students have access to Baptist health services? Is there space for students living in Memphis to quarantine?
Students will be able to access the Health Center by appointment only by calling (901) 843-3895 or emailing firstname.lastname@example.org. Appointments are available Monday through Friday 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.; closed 12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. Residential and non-residential students with COVID-19 concerns will be scheduled to report to the COVID-19 Care Clinic.
Will Bon Appetit still provide meal services to students who are in Memphis but off-campus?
In the spring all students will be able to purchase meal plans.
For the spring semester, non-residential/commuter student meal plans will be able to choose from the following plans:
- 5 meals/week-$735
- 7 meals/week-$1,014
- 15 meals/week-$1,792
Does the college have additional financial aid available?
How can students check out books from the library ?
Barret Library will work with faculty and students who currently live on campus to obtain materials that are housed in the Library. Books, DVDs, print journals, reference works, and even older print indexes will be pulled, checked out to the faculty member or students, and placed on a cart located in the foyer area between the Library and Middle Ground. The Interlibrary Loan program is ready and available to obtain articles and book chapters. Please use Help@rhodes.edu to submit requests for items owned by the Library or items requested via Interlibrary Loan. Virtual research instruction sessions for students are also available.
Barret Library Liaisons are available to work with students to help discover digital materials for their research needs. If Barret Library owns a print book, librarians will work to see if a digital edition can be obtained. On a case by case basis, the table of contents from Barret owned print books can be sent to the student, and a limited number of pages or chapters will be scanned and forwarded to the student. Students should use email@example.com for their requests.
What are the hours of operation for dining services?
Bon Appetit will provide service hours via the following schedule for the spring semester
Refectory (Open 7 days)
- Breakfast – 7am-9:30am
- Closed from 9:30am-11:00am
- Lunch – 11:00am-2:00pm
- Dinner – 4:30pm-7pm
Refectory (Kitchen Counter)
- Breakfast – 9:30am-10:30am
- Closed from 10:30-11:00pm
- Lunch 11:00am-2:30pm
- Dinner (Closed)
Lynx Lair (Open Monday-Friday; closed weekends)
- Lunch – 11:00am-4:30pm
- Closed from 4:30pm-5:30PM
- Dinner – 5:30pm-9:00pm
Middle Ground (Open Monday-Friday; closed weekends)
Will I be able to access campus in the spring?
All students who have completed the Spring 2021 Plan indicating wanting to be in-person will be able to access campus this spring. Students who have indicated wanting to be fully remote will not be permitted to access campus. All student access to campus will be based on full compliance with all mandatory health and safety protocols including weekly testing and daily symptom monitoring.
Access policies will be reviewed regularly based on public health conditions.
Can I use the BCLC in the spring?
Yes, the BCLC will be open this spring with limited capacity. Access policies will be reviewed regularly based on public health conditions.
How will air be ventilated to minimize health risks?
The CDC has stated since the beginning of the COVID virus pandemic to:
- Properly wear facemasks, observe social distancing requirements, and frequently wash or sanitize hands as the first line of defense against the virus.
- Allow air-handling units (AHU’s) in all buildings to run continuously while occupied.
- Set outside makeup air at maximum allowable settings
Campus HVAC operation
The basis of design for campus buildings (and most commercial buildings) is six (6) air exchanges per hour while utilizing maximum allowable outside air. Outside air must be monitored in Memphis, due to high humidity levels and the propensity to create an environment for mold growth. Windows and doors should not be opened for fresh air, as this may disrupt HVAC design and proper systems operation, while potentially increasing humidity levels and outside air particles leading to air filtration issues. Aerosolized virus particles do not perform well after passing through HVAC filtration.
The greater threat is from aerosolized virus particles produced by coughing or sneezing in a space transmitted to unmasked or improperly masked individuals. Masking, social distancing, and frequent hand washing/sanitizing is still the first line of defense to prevent COVID-19 exposure.
Through research and review with design professionals, we have determined which technologies are most effective and adopted those measures, including:
- Improved filtration - We are currently converting from MERV 8 to MERV 11 filters.
- UV lighting in air handling units (AHUs) - UV lighting has been installed in several building mechanical systems. Our design plan includes UV lighting design for future buildings and retrofitting older buildings.
How frequently will buildings be cleaned and sanitized?
The Health & Safety plan outlines that campus buildings be cleaned once each day, Monday - Friday. Residence hall common baths, common showers, and the Refectory restrooms are cleaned daily, Monday - Sunday. Offices are cleaned once per week, typically each Wednesday. Disinfectant in spray bottles will be placed in restrooms, classrooms, and office suites with signage asking that end users disinfectant surfaces before and after use.