alert iconCoronavirus (COVID-19): Updates and Resources

New safety measures impact spring semester and summer session coursework, events and travel. Get the update.

Harper College Advisory

 

Harper campuses are currently closed to the public in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • Spring semester and summer session: All spring semester AND summer session credit courses will be converted to online instruction. We continue to explore options for lab courses, internships and clinicals; faculty will reach out to students in their courses directly within the next few weeks.
  • Spring grades: To help address some of the unique challenges that students are facing due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we’re offering flexibility in grading for the spring semester. Additional details will be provided soon.
  • Graduation: We are committed to celebrating students’ success and achievements virtually and will provide more information to graduates in the coming weeks.
  • Remote learning resources: View resources or call 847.925.6484 for additional assistance. See also: Student FAQs.
  • Services: Employees will continue to provide services remotely.

Employees: To keep essential systems running, only a limited number of pre-authorized personnel are permitted on campus. Employees will continue to work remotely through May 15. All active employees scheduled to work during spring semester, including regular part-time and student workers, will be paid for their regularly scheduled work hours through May 15.

Campus events: All on-campus events are canceled through May 15.

Travel: All college-related travel outside of Illinois is suspended through May 31.

Because the situation is dynamic, please refer to the most recent updates for details.

 

Previous Updates

It is our responsibility to do all we can to limit the spread of COVID-19 and protect the health and safety of our campus community, particularly those who are most vulnerable. While we are hopeful that physical distancing measures will begin to flatten the curve, it’s clear that the alarming surge in coronavirus cases both in Illinois and throughout the U.S. requires us to postpone the reopening of campus and take additional action.

  • Online learning: All spring semester AND summer session credit courses will be converted to online instruction. Independent, flexible learning will continue the next two weeks as originally planned. Fully online instruction will begin April 13.
  • Labs, internships and clinicals:We are exploring options for these courses and learning experiences. Faculty are in the process of addressing this and will reach out to the students in their courses directly. 
  • Spring grades: To help address some of the unique challenges you’re facing, we’re offering flexibility in grading for the spring semester. We will provide additional details soon. All active employees scheduled to work during spring semester, including regular part-time and student workers, will be paid for their regularly scheduled work hours through May 15.
  • Graduation: We are committed to celebrating students’ success and achievements through virtual events. Graduates will receive more information in the coming weeks.
  • Working remotely: Employees will continue to work remotely through May 15. Employees will be provided with a week’s notice should this date change.

This pandemic has brought us to uncomfortable spaces in many ways, and our shift to online learning and remote working present a variety of challenges. However, based on current knowledge we believe these steps are necessary and in the best interest of our entire community. This is an ever-evolving situation, and plans may be adjusted if everyone’s safety can be ensured.

Through this uncertainty, the college is committed to supporting employees. We will coordinate Harper’s benefits with the federal emergency paid-leave benefits program outlined in the Families First Coronavirus Response Act, should employees need this coverage. In addition, the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act) passed recently includes direct payments to most families and offers other assistance.

We appreciate your patience as we work on solutions – both to help our students successfully complete their coursework and to meet the needs of our employees and community. Together, we will come through this stronger and more deeply connected than ever before.

The college recognizes that the current state-of-affairs surrounding the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic is quickly changing. As such, we are accelerating our plan to implement social distancing measures. Starting Tuesday, March 17, most employees will begin working remotely. Essential employees needed on campus to support operations of the college will be notified. Specific information on our revised schedule, some tips for working remotely, and payroll is posted on HIP, the employee portal.

Dear Harper College Community,

I write to share an update on our response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. While we have not identified any cases of infected Harper College students, faculty or staff, the safety of our community is our primary concern in this rapidly evolving situation. As we approach Spring Break, a popular travel period, Harper College is taking the following proactive measures to minimize our risk of exposure:

  • We are implementing off-campus, flexible learning for credit students March 16-April 12. For information on Continuing Education, please see below.
  • For employees, the college will maintain its regular work schedule through March 29.
  • Beginning March 30, we will begin a two-week social distancing period. This two-week period, March 30-April 12, aligns with the 14-day incubation period for COVID-19.
  • During this time, employees and students will not come to campus (except essential personnel, who will be notified).

What is off-campus flexible learning?

Students will not be on campus during the flexible learning period. There may be exceptions for individuals who present a hardship. Credit students will be completing independent homework, readings and projects from home provided by their faculty. The goal of this flexible learning period is to minimize the risk of exposure to the virus, while striving for successful, on-time course completion. Students who need assistance learning remotely can call 847.925.6484.

Faculty will be developing curriculum for online delivery in preparation for the possibility that the COVID-19 pandemic requires we move to full online instruction. That decision will be made by April 13.

Campus events: March 16-April 12

All on-campus events are canceled.

Travel: Now-May 31

Effective immediately, all college-related travel outside of Illinois is suspended through May 31. This applies to both out-of-state, domestic and international travel. Please use your judgement when choosing to attend in-state events or explore attending virtually.

For all of us, this is a time of uncertainty. I want to assure you that we continue to actively monitor this public health threat as well as local, state and federal actions that may impact the college. I appreciate your patience and understanding as we navigate these extraordinary circumstances. Please continue to visit the Harper College Advisory webpage for information on prevention, resources and actions you can take related to COVID-19.

Sincerely,

Dr. Avis Proctor, President

Harper College continues to closely monitor the global outbreak of 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). We will keep our campus community informed as developments occur. To date, we have not identified any cases of infected Harper College students, faculty or staff. However, it is incumbent upon all of us to remain aware and vigilant of this public health situation.

We have assembled our emergency planning and response team, comprised of all areas of the college. This team will meet at least weekly to discuss, monitor and plan for necessary responses or changes to business and learning. At our meeting this morning, the team decided to implement the following:

Changes to Travel

International: Following the guidance of the U.S. Department of State and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Harper College is suspending all college-sponsored international travel to China, Iran, Italy and South Korea. We expect this list of countries to grow and encourage anyone considering international travel to closely follow the latest travel advisories and alerts.

Domestic: Nonessential travel including professional development, college-sponsored activities and events is also suspended to states that have declared a state of emergency in response to the coronavirus outbreak. We will continue to monitor the situation in the other states as the situation evolves. We are restricting nonessential, college-related travel to:

  • California
  • Florida
  • Hawaii
  • Indiana
  • Maryland
  • New York
  • Washington

In addition, we are asking everyone to do their part to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Please assist us in wiping down classroom tables, workspaces, phones, desks, tables, door handles and keyboards. A centralized purchasing system is being developed; more information will be provided to employees on how college departments can purchase the appropriate supplies.

Let’s work together to keep our college safe.

We want to take an opportunity to assure everyone that we continue to actively monitor the spread of coronavirus (COVID-19) and remain vigilant as the situation evolves.

As you may have seen in recent news coverage, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention last week encouraged U.S. communities, hospitals, schools and other organizations to begin preparing for a disruption due to coronavirus. And on Monday, Northwest Community Hospital announced two confirmed cases.

It is important to note that at this time, there are no confirmed cases of any infected Harper College students, faculty or staff. Federal and state public health officials have reiterated that the risk to the public remains low. All classes, events and activities will continue as normal.

The college is taking proactive steps to keep our campus community healthy and safe. In addition to following the guidance and recommendations of the Illinois Department of Public Health and the CDC, we have implemented appropriate precautions including:

  • The college has assembled its emergency planning and response team.
  • We are reviewing academic and business continuity protocols, including study abroad and business travel.
  • Our custodial staff is paying special attention to sanitizing door handles, handrails, bathrooms and other surfaces.
  • We are emphasizing the importance of everyday practices to help prevent the spread of respiratory viruses including coronavirus and the flu.
  • Hand sanitizing wipes and tissues will be placed in every classroom and lab.

Your safety is important to us. We are committed to keeping you informed. Thank you for your cooperation and support.

We’ve been following the news about the spread of a new respiratory virus known as the 2019 Novel Coronavirus. We also recently looked into a report that a Harper College student may have been exposed to coronavirus. This student was not infected and at no time posed a risk to campus.

Again, there are no confirmed cases of any infected Harper College students, faculty or staff.

Public health officials have said the risk remains low in the United States. We’re closely monitoring this public health concern and following the guidance of the Illinois Department of Public Health. To help keep our campus community safe, we can educate ourselves about coronavirus and take preventative actions that prevent the spread of respiratory viruses, influenza and other illnesses.

What is coronavirus?

According to the Illinois Department of Public Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, human coronaviruses are common throughout the world and cause respiratory illness. This new strain of coronavirus (2019-nCoV) was first detected in Wuhan, China, and is thought to be spreading from ill people to others. Symptoms can include fever, cough and shortness of breath.

Prevention

There is currently no vaccine to prevent infection. The CDC always recommends the following everyday preventative actions:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

If you have concerns about your health or symptoms you’re experiencing, please contact your healthcare provider or visit the NCH Outpatient Care Center in Building M.

Visit the Illinois Department of Public Health or the CDC to learn more about coronavirus including answers to Frequently Asked Questions. If you have questions or concerns specific to health and safety at Harper College, please submit them here.

 

Student Communications

Dear Students,

Thank you for your patience, flexibility and perseverance in these unprecedented times. I know you have many questions about the rest of the semester and I hope this note provides some guidance and clarity.

In an effort to limit the spread of COVID-19 and protect the health and safety of our campus community, we are making the following changes:

  • Spring semester: All credit courses will go completely online for the rest of the semester.
  • Summer session: All courses will be offered online only.
  • Labs, internships and clinicals: We are exploring options for these courses and learning experiences. Faculty are in the process of addressing this and will reach out to the students in their courses directly within the next few weeks.
  • Spring grades: To help address some of the unique challenges you’re facing due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we’re offering flexibility in grading for the spring semester. Additional details will be provided soon.
  • Graduation: We are committed to celebrating your success and achievements. We are planning to do this virtually and will provide more information to graduates in the coming weeks.

I understand that this sudden shift to online learning presents a variety of challenges and may not be what you hoped for. We’ve put together some tips for successful online learning and a list of resources to help you get online and connected, if necessary. We are all in this transition together and I am confident we can succeed.

Through this uncertainty, we are committed to supporting you. Our staff and faculty are launching more online services than ever before. You can now make an appointment with the Writing Center online, use online resources from the Library, and participate in Student Involvement live events and chats. We may be working remotely, but we are all here to help you.

Sincerely,

Dr. Avis Proctor

In response to the COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic, Harper College is providing relief for students with payment plans for spring or summer. We recognize many of you may face additional financial challenges during this time and want to see you successfully complete your courses.

What to Know:

Spring 2020 Payment Plans:
Payments scheduled for April will be rescheduled to May 5.

Summer 2020 Payment Plans:
Plans with payments beginning in April will now begin in May, running May 5 to August 5.

What to Do:

  1. If you would like the new payment schedule:
    • No action is necessary.
  2. If you want to keep the original payment schedule:

You can also make a manual payment at any time following these instructions.

We hope this change gives you a little more breathing room, that you can focus on your courses, and that you stay safe and healthy. As always, visit harpercollege.edu/advisory for updated information on the Harper College COVID-19 response and services plan.

Dear Students:

We understand this is an uncertain time; there’s no “routine” right now and anxiety is high. We also know that you’re managing a lot, between your coursework, family life and what may be happening at your workplace.

Your personal well-being is more important than ever at a time like this. To help us understand your current concerns and the hardships you may be facing, please complete a brief survey.

This survey will help us determine how we can best support you as we all manage the COVID-19 pandemic. In the meantime, please review this list of available community resources.

To build community and sustain our personal well-being, we are offering you the chance to opt-in to regular text messages. These messages will feature helpful tips, virtual events and more. To opt-in, simply text “HARPERHEALTH” to 313131.

Know that we are working on your behalf and doing as much as we can to help you be successful. If you have questions, please submit them or call 847.925.6484.

Stay safe and stay well.

Dr. Avis Proctor

Thank you for working with us as we respond to the COVID-19 pandemic. We know that transitioning to off-campus, flexible learning may be difficult for some, but we are committed to your success and helping you complete your courses.

To make this process easier, we want to make sure you are aware of some resources:

  • Student Service Desk: If you need help accessing Blackboard or other Harper systems, please contact the Student Service Desk at 847.925.6866. They will be available Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. and Saturday from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Please be patient as the Student Service Desk is managing a high call volume.
  • Blackboard:
    • Access your courses online through Blackboard.
    • You can also find them through the “My Blackboard Classes” section of your MyHarper portal.
    • If you are new to Blackboard and need some help navigating, this Blackboard Basics video may help.
  • No internet at home? You may qualify for up to two months offree basic internet service from Comcast.
  • Microsoft Word, Excel, Power Point for FREE:
    • All students can download Microsoft Word, Excel and Power Point for free on up to five computers, five mobile devices and five tablets.
    • Download the software.
      • Your username is your Harper email.
      • Your password is your six-digit birthday (MMDDYY).
  • Access to textbooks: TheHarperStore (bookstore) is not charging ground shipping on orders through April 12, so you can have your learning materials delivered directly to home.

In addition, student services like theOne Stop, Academic Advising, Access and Disability Services,Academic Support Centers and theLibrary will have limited availability during this time. Hours and services will vary and are noted online.  

We are continuing to monitor this public health threat as well as local, state and federal actions that may impact you and the college. Continue visiting theHarper College webpage and remember all Harper College campuses are closed to the public, including students, through April 12.

If you have questions or concerns, pleasesubmit them.
 

Dear Students,

I am writing with an update on our response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. While we have not identified any cases of infected Harper College students, faculty or staff, the health and safety of our community is our primary concern in this rapidly evolving situation. We are taking the following proactive measures to minimize our risk of exposure:

Off-campus flexible learning period: March 16-April 12 (except Spring Break March 23-29)

  • From March 16 to April 12, you will be learning from home and won't come to campus.
  • During this time, you will complete independent homework, readings and projects provided by your faculty. The goal of this flexible learning period is to minimize the risk of exposure to the virus, while striving for successful, on-time course completion. Your faculty members will give you your assignments.
  • You are not expected to engage in coursework over Spring Break (March 23-29).
  • If you need assistance or additional support to learn remotely, please call 847.925.6484.
  • All clinical experiences are suspended.

Campus events: March 16-April 12  
All on-campus events are canceled.

Travel: Now-May 31
Effective immediately, all college-related travel outside of Illinois is suspended through May 31.

For all of us, this is a time of uncertainty. I want to assure you that we continue to actively monitor this public health threat as well as local, state and federal actions that may impact you and the college. I appreciate your patience and understanding as we navigate these extraordinary circumstances. Please continue to visit the Harper College Advisory webpage for information on prevention, resources and actions you can take related to COVID-19.

If you have questions or concerns about these safety procedures, please submit them.

Sincerely,

Dr. Avis Proctor
Harper College President

Dear Students,

Harper College is closely monitoring the global outbreak of 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19). At this time, we have not identified any cases of infected Harper College students, faculty or staff.

We are taking proactive steps to keep our campus community healthy and safe, and have assembled our emergency planning and response team. This team is monitoring and responding to the situation.

In response to the coronavirus outbreak, we are suspending all nonessential travel to states that have declared a state of emergency in response to COVID-19. This includes all college-sponsored activities and events. Currently, travel is restricted to:

  • California
  • Florida
  • Hawaii
  • Indiana
  • Maryland
  • New York
  • Washington

Following the guidance of the U.S. Department of State and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, we are also suspending all college-sponsored international travel to countries with a CDC warning level 3 or higher.

We are asking everyone to do their part to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus. Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds, making sure to wash all surfaces. Use hand sanitizer when you can’t wash your hands; you’ll find many hand sanitizer stations around campus. Please assist us in wiping down desktops and computers, using the sanitizing wipes in classrooms and labs.

Finally, we have established a webpage to keep you informed. We will keep this site updated with information about the coronavirus, including prevention tips. You can also submit a question about health and safety at Harper.

Let’s work together to keep our college safe.

 

Continuing Education

Dear CE Students,

Harper College recently announced a second phase of response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. We are now taking the following proactive measures to minimize our risk of exposure. Here is what you should know:

All Continuing Education classes, regardless of the location of the class, will not have in-person meetings through the end of the spring semester (May 15). Some classes will be cancelled. We are currently exploring an online option for many spring classes that have not yet completed.

For classes that are moved to an online format we will intend to resume classes beginning on Monday, April 13. Students will not attend any Harper College Continuing Education classes either at Harper College facilities or at partner locations throughout the community. You will be notified by email when a decision on your class has been made. It will include information about if and how the class will continue. For those classes that do migrate to an online format, instructors will provide specific information on how they will conduct the class.

The college is providing instructors and students with three tools to utilize: Blackboard, Blackboard Collaborate and WebEx. You do not need to own any software to participate and in the case of Collaborate and WebEx the minimum requirement is a telephone. However, a connection to the internet will help you to fully take advantage of the options provided by your instructors.

Continuing Education employees will continue to maintain our regular work schedule though we will comply with social distancing requirements through May 15. There will not be staff on campus during this period, however, online registration will continue. During this time, you may email specific questions to ce@harpercollege.edu.

We have created an FAQ page for Continuing Education students to address the most common questions.

Please continue to visit the Harper College Advisory webpage for information on prevention, resources and actions you can take related to COVID-19.

Please continue reading below to see Harper College President Avis Proctor’s latest message to our community. Please note that in addition to the spring semester plan that I have outlined above, we hope to announce a plan for Continuing Education summer classes soon.

Best,

Scott Cashman, Ph.D.
Manager Continuing Education
Personal and Cultural Enrichment
Harper College

Dear Colleagues,

Earlier today Harper College announced a response to the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. There are no identified cases of infected Harper College students, faculty or staff, but the safety of our community is our primary concern in this rapidly evolving situation. As we approach Spring Break, a popular travel period, Harper College is taking the following proactive measures to minimize our risk of exposure.

Here is what you should know:

  • All Continuing Education classes, regardless of the location of the class, are suspended beginning on Monday, March 16. We currently intend to resume classes on Monday, April 13. Students will not attend any Harper College Continuing Education classes either at Harper College facilities or at partner locations throughout the community.
  • We will attempt to reschedule the three missed weeks at the end of your class. Specific information about your class will be sent to you when it is available.
  • All on-campus events are canceled for the period of March 16 – April 12.
  • Updated 3/16: Continuing Education employees will maintain our regular work schedule through March 16. Beginning March 17, we will begin a social distancing period through April 12. There will not be staff on campus during this period, however, online registration will continue. During this time you may email specific questions to ce@harpercollege.edu

Please continue to visit the Harper College Advisory webpage for information on prevention, resources and actions you can take related to COVID-19. Please note that off-campus flexible learning does not apply to Continuing Education classes.

Best,

Scott Cashman, Ph.D.
Manager Continuing Education


Continuing Education Web site: ce.harpercollege.eduContinuing Education Blog site: http://ceblog.harpercollege.edu/

 

Program/Facility Announcements

For the latest status on specific Harper events, see our Event Calendar. Events that have been canceled will be updated with "Canceled" in the title.

Updated 3/13/20: Due to the continued global outbreak of 2019 Novel Coronavirus (COVID-19), Harper College will be operating in an off-campus flexible learning period from March 16-April 12. During this time, students are not to come to campus.

If you need food, personal hygiene products or emergency funding in the interim, please reach out to your local township for assistance. Alternative support may be available through these community resources. Please see the Hawks Care site for additional info.

The Health and Recreation Center (Bulding M) will be closed from Monday, March 16 - Sunday, April 12. For additional event, facility and programming information see harpercollege.edu/campusrec.

For information on the Northwest Community Healthcare (NCH) outpatient care center in Building M on Harper's campus, visit their website athttps://www.nch.org/location-contact-info/nch-outpatient-care-center-at-harper-college 

Updated 3/13/2020: In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, the March 20-22 performances of Shakespeare in Love have been canceled. The March 13-15 performances will go on as scheduled.  Ticket holders for the weekend of March 20-22 may apply their tickets to any of the performances taking place this weekend, March 13-15. Simply bring your ticket to the performance. For more information, please contact the Harper College Box Office at 847.925.6100.

All on-campus events between March 16-April 12 have been canceled. A full list of canceled events can be found here.

For up-to-the-minute updates on the college’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic, please visit Harper College Advisory.

For updated Veterans and GI Bill information, see Veterans Services.

 

Prevention

The CDC recommends the following everyday preventative actions:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces.

Resources

The CDC has valuable information on the following:

Questions or concerns?

If you have concerns about your health or symptoms you’re experiencing, please contact your healthcare provider.

Have questions about coronavirus? Contact the Illinois Department of Public Health hotline.

Phone: 800.889.3931

Email: dph.sick@illinois.gov

If you have questions or concerns specific to health and safety at Harper College, please submit them.