Update on the COVID-19 Coronavirus

22 Feb 2021

Important Information:

February 20, 2021

The data dashboard has been updated to include our most recent Broad tests that had all negative results.

February 13, 2021

The data dashboard has been update to include residential testing, surveillance testing, and tests provided by non-residential and commuting students. The single residential positive test was from a student not yet living in residence, but counted among residents as they arrived on campus after completing isolation.

February 10, 2021

Vermont Tech began a COVID-19 surveillance testing program on February 10, 2021. The purpose of this testing program is to allow the college to monitor and address any trends and prevalence of cases and make timely decisions on intervention and response. Once a week, a random sample of campus-based students will be selected and tested for COVID-19, regardless of whether they have a known exposure or are showing symptoms of COVID-19. The Broad Institute testing program used for arrival testing will be used again for this purpose.

If a student is selected, they will be notified via VTC email to drop in during that time. They will also be given instructions for next steps. We understand that this specific timeframe will not work for everyone, so your attention to the instructions in the VTC email that you may receive will be key.

Spring Testing Schedule

  • January 15, 4-6 pm, Randolph
  • January 22, 1-3 pm, Randolph
  • January 29, 9 am-1 pm, Williston
  • January 29, 11 am-5 pm, Randolph
  • February 5, 2-4 pm, Randolph
  • February 5, 12-1 pm, Williston
  • February 10, 11 am-1 pm, Randolph
  • February 15, 2-4 pm, Randolph
  • February 22, 2-4 pm, Randolph
  • February 24, 11:30 am-1:30 pm, Williston
  • March 1, 10:30 am-12:30 pm, Williston
  • March 1, 3-5 pm, Randolph
  • March 8, 1:30-3:30 pm, Randolph
  • March 17, 12-2 pm, Randolph
  • March 24, 1:45-3:45 pm, Randolph
  • March 29, 1:45-3:45 pm, Randolph
  • April 7, 11 am-1 pm, Williston
  • April 7, 3:30-5:30 pm, Randolph

January 25, 2021

As of today, the dashboard has been updated to reflect only spring semester data, per the tracking requirements of the State of Vermont. At this time, the data include Practical Nursing students and early returning residential students. Remaining residential students will be tested on January 29 for the start of the spring semester. Students coming to campus at any time must also provide a negative test result to the Health Coordinator, Bob Sivret, before the start of lab weeks. More information about testing requirements is found on this webpage.

January 18, 2021

Student athletes and resident assistants moved in to Randolph Center residential housing on January 15. They all received COVID-19 tests that day (Day 0 tests) and went into quarantine. All 21 tests came back negative, so residential students are able to leave their rooms while remaining on campus. These students will be tested again on January 22 (Day 7 tests).

The remaining residential students will move in to Williston and Randolph Center on January 29.

January 8, 2021

During the semester break, we continued to track student and employee COVID-19 testing results. During that period a number of health professions students tested positive outside of their classroom or college-sponsored clinical settings.

December 10, 2020

This week, we have been notified of an additional off-campus student testing positive for COVID-19. That student had one close contact to be notified, as that person is both a Vermont Tech student and relative of the person who tested positive. Neither student has been on a college campus.

December 4, 2020

In the last week, we have been notified of new positive cases of COVID-19 among four off-campus students and one Randolph Center employee. The employee has been in quarantine since November 19, 2020 and not on any of our campuses.

With these confirmations, no college students or employees required notification of being close contacts.

Everyone is reminded to keep a contact-tracing journal and continue following the safety protocols to ensure your own health and the safety of others by wearing a mask, washing hands frequently, and maintaining 6’ of social distance between yourself and others.

As we near the end of this fall semester, I will to thank everyone for your diligence in maintaining the safety of our community. It has required effort from you all, for which I am grateful.

November 25, 2020

We were notified that two new Randolph Center employees have confirmed positive cases of COVID-19. These employees have been in quarantine since November 19, 2020 and not on any of our campuses.

With this confirmation, college staff have notified all employees who came into close contact with the employees to quarantine and monitor themselves for symptoms. We have also shared information about how to get a COVID test and FFCRA protections.

If any additional employees are deemed a close contact, college staff will discuss next steps and guidance. We are in contact with the Vermont Department of Health (VDOH) and are taking necessary steps to protect the health of our students and staff.

Everyone is reminded to keep a contact-tracing journal and continue following the safety protocols to ensure your own health and the safety of others by wearing a mask, washing hands frequently, and maintaining 6’ of social distance between yourself and others.

Please have a safe and healthy Thanksgiving, remembering that multi-household gatherings are restricted in order to stop the spread of the virus. Cases in Vermont are up 260% in the last two weeks with a 300% increase in deaths. We can and must do our part to avoid overwhelming our healthcare systems.

November 20, 2020

A suspected case of COVID-19 of a commuter student on the Williston campus has been confirmed as positive. Their last time on campus was Thursday, November 12 and they developed symptoms days later.

With this confirmation, college staff have notified all students and employees who came into contact with the student and provided guidance from the Vermont Department of Health.

Everyone is reminded to keep a contact-tracing journal and continue following the safety protocols to ensure your own health and the safety of others by wearing a mask, washing hands frequently, and maintaining 6’ of social distance between yourself and others.

November 19, 2020

Today, we were notified that a Randolph Center employee has a confirmed positive case of COVID-19.

With this confirmation, college staff have notified all employees who came into close contact with the employee to quarantine and monitor themselves for symptoms. We have also shared information about how to get a COVID test and FFCRA protections.

If any additional employees are deemed a close contact, college staff will be in touch to discuss next steps and guidance. We are in contact with the Vermont Department of Health (VDH) and are taking necessary steps to protect the health of our students and staff.

Everyone is reminded to continue following the safety protocols to ensure your own health and the safety of others. Wearing a mask, washing hands frequently, and maintaining 6’ of social distance between yourself and others is proven to make the difference. Please continue to give these steps a priority. Any employees with symptoms are reminded to report them to your supervisor.

If you have questions about health and safety protocols, please contact our COVID-19 Coordinator, Stacy Plourde.

November 17, 2020

In reporting the numbers for this week, please note that an additional positive case was added among the non-residential students. This nursing student from a distance site was a close contact of a family member who had tested positive and went into quarantine, and subsequently developed symptoms. Their COVID test has since come back positive.

November 11, 2020

Stacy Plourde, RDH, MS, CPHDH , the college’s COVID-19 Coordinator, sent the following message to all students that was shared with college employees:

Today, the suspected case of COVID-19 of an employee at Catamount Center has been confirmed as positive.

With this confirmation, college staff have notified all students and employees who came into contact with the employee to remain in quarantine and monitor themselves for symptoms. We have also shared information about how to get a COVID test and FFCRA protections.

Out of an abundance of caution, labs scheduled for this week in the same facility are postponed until January so all students and employees can safely quarantine for the duration required.

Everyone is reminded to continue following the safety protocols to ensure your own health and the safety of others by wearing a mask, washing hands frequently, and maintaining 6’ of social distance between yourself and others.

October 28, 2020

President Moulton sent an update to the Vermont Tech Community about another positive case among our student population.

Good morning Vermont Tech Community,

Vermont Tech has recently been alerted to a positive COVID case among our students.  A nursing student at one of the distance sites has tested positive for COVID-19 and is experiencing symptoms.  That student is isolated and has been since symptoms began.  Fortunately, when nursing students are in clinical or labs, they are wearing full PPE.  As a precaution, fellow students at this site are being asked to quarantine. The State is conducting contact tracing and we are hopeful that the risk of spread is minimal.

However, it is critical to remain vigilant. For anyone who may have had contact with this student, you will be contacted by the VT Department of Health. We also ask you please pay close attention to the attached guidance on what to do if you are in close contact with someone who is positive.

This is also an excellent reminder we all must REMAIN VIGILANT with our COVID precautions!  As we know very well, wearing a mask, maintaining social distancing, frequent complete hand washing, and avoiding large gatherings are the best preventions.  If you are experiencing symptoms, been around anyone with a positive test or symptoms, remain home or go home and isolate.

There are three weeks remaining for labs and residency for the fall semester. Paying close attention to and following protocols is CRITICAL to get through this semester safely.  It is also critical when you get home! We are seeing a disturbing rise in cases in Vermont.  The ONLY way we will beat this virus is doubling down and following precautions.

This student is in our thoughts as we hope for a speedy recovery.

Resources

Prevention and Staying Healthy

You can help avoid the spread of illness by following CDC guidelines for keeping healthy. No single action will provide complete protection from illness, but an approach combining the following steps can help decrease the likelihood of transmission.

  • Stay home from work or class when you are sick.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after you cough or sneeze. Alcohol-based hand cleaners are also effective.
  • Scrub your hands at least 20 seconds, or roughly twice the length of the “Happy Birthday” song.
  • When you cough or sneeze, cover your nose and mouth with a tissue and throw the tissue away after you use it. Alternatively, cough or sneeze into clothing — i.e. your sleeve rather than your bare hands.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth. Germs and viruses spread that way.
  • Get sufficient sleep, exercise regularly, manage stress, drink plenty of fluids, and eat nutritious foods.