Living on Campus
Your Daily Life
Thank you for getting us to the point where we can continue with plans for our spring semester. We know that the semester will present new challenges, including the need to spend more time indoors. However, your continued compliance with our health and safety standards goes a long way to ensuring our ability to stay together on campus.
As it was in the fall semester, in the residence halls your roommates are considered your family unit. Therefore masks and physical distancing guidelines are not required. However, when moving about to common spaces (bathrooms, lounge areas, etc.), you will be expected to follow all health and safety guidelines. Other elements of your life on campus during the COVID-19 pandemic include:
Daily Health Checks
A daily health check is a required part of your participation in campus life, be it attending classes, living on campus or participating in campus activities. If you do your part, we will have a successful semester in person. The daily health check is a 3-question survey. We ask that you only include NEW, UNUSUAL or UNEXPECTED symptoms that are commonly associated with possible COVID-19 infection.
Preparing for Positive Cases on Campus
At Saint Mary’s, we work diligently to limit your exposure to the COVID-19 virus, even when positive cases are part of our daily campus operations. To mitigate widespread exposure, we have enacted several important features to keep you and our community safe:
- Creating a dedicated on-campus space for residential students to recover, receive care, and actively participate in their academic classes if they are able
- Establishing a COVID-19 sterilizing/sanitation team to thoroughly and routinely deep-clean all public spaces
- Employing a robust contact tracing tool to identify those who may been exposed
Quarantine and Isolation at Saint Mary’s College
When a residential student tests positive for COVID-19, she is assigned to the isolation/quarantine area on campus, the Mother Angela Care Center, located in Regina Hall South. Off-campus students will be required to quarantine or isolate at their place of residence. All students have the option of returning to their home for isolation or quarantine if that can be safely arranged. Upon being assigned to the isolation/quarantine area, the student will be responsible for transporting herself over to her assigned isolation or quarantine space within the time period designated. She will also bring with her, sufficient personal hygiene items, clothing, medication, and class materials for as many as 10 days.
A student can return from quarantine or isolation only when she has received clearance from Health and Counseling.
Daily Care While in Isolation and Quarantine
Health and Counseling will be responsible for the initial orientation and daily health checks of students placed in isolation/quarantine. The Tri-managers of the Mother Angela Care Center are responsible for the day-to-day welfare needs of the students in the isolation/quarantine area, including food and nutrition, special needs, and pastoral support.
Residence Hall Safety
- Residence Hall Visitors. For the spring semester, Saint Mary’s students living on campus are free to visit each other’s rooms, but must wear a mask at all times if they are not roommates. Saint Mary’s students living off campus, family members, and tri-campus students are not allowed in private residence hall spaces. Each residence hall has a designated public lobby where food deliveries are allowed and tri-campus students may wait for a friend. These public spaces will close each night at midnight. They will reopen at 9 a.m. Chapels within the residence halls are considered private spaces, and therefore closed to visitors, tri-campus students, and Saint Mary's students living off campus. Certain masses are live-streamed; the schedule can be found here.
- Kitchen Areas. Additional microwaves will be available for your use in the kitchen area, however, students will not be allowed to use the stoves or ovens for the time being.
Campus Visitation Policies
Effective Friday, March 5, 2021, Saint Mary's will allow immediate family members of Saint Mary's athletes competing on outdoor fields or courts to watch a competition. Further details and conditions can be found by clicking here.
Tri-campus students are not considered visitors and can come to Saint Mary’s campus, though they may not enter private residence hall spaces. All students from Notre Dame or Holy Cross, must follow Saint Mary’s safety guidelines, including wearing an appropriate face covering, physical distancing, and hand washing. Saint Mary’s students visiting Notre Dame and Holy Cross must adhere to their guidelines and standards.
Saint Mary’s College continues to remain closed to off-campus visitors. Only those with essential business with the College are allowed at this time. We will continue to revisit this restriction as the semester continues.
Only Saint Mary’s students living on campus can visit one another in any residence hall, as long as they wear a mask at all times. Saint Mary’s students living off campus, family members, and tri-campus students are not allowed in private residence hall spaces.
Each residence hall has a designated public lobby available for food deliveries and visits from tri-campus students. These public spaces will close each night at midnight. They will reopen at 9 a.m.
Chapels within the residence halls are considered private spaces, and therefore closed to visitors, tri-campus students, and Saint Mary's students living off campus. Certain masses are live-streamed; the schedule can be found here.
The State of Indiana continues to provide guidance to all higher education institutions on how to safely provide meal service to students. In addition, Campus Dining at Saint Mary's College is working with public health experts to shape our standards. Alternative dining spaces are available that allow for safe physical distance, while still being able to enjoy the company of others. Outside dining spaces, weather permitting, include enhanced seating under tents outside of the Student Center and dining hall. There is also seating on the verandas outside Stapleton Hall and on the back patio of Haggar College Center, weather permitting. The patio outside of the 1844 Cafe is also available for seating. More information on campus dining, hours of operation of the Noble Family Dining Hall and 1844 Cafe, and much more can be found here.
The Student Center will maintain regular hours in the morning, but will close when 1844 Cafe closes at 9 p.m. The tunnel connecting Le Mans Hall to the Student Center will close when the Student Center closes.
Chapel and Mass
In accordance with the Diocese of Fort Wayne-South Bend directives, masks must be worn and the appropriate distance must be maintained when attending Mass, evening prayer, or any other services in the Holy Spirit Chapel, Sacred Heart Chapel, or Our Lady of Wisdom Chapel. Chapels within the residence halls are open only to Saint Mary's students living on campus. Access the current Mass schedule here.
The Shaheen Bookstore is operating under its normal hours: Monday-Friday, 9 a.m.- 5 p.m., and on Saturday, 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. The bookstore encourages online ordering via the bookstore website, and provides delivery to residence halls.
Health and Counseling Center
The Health and Counseling Center is here to support your health and wellness and will maintain its regular hours of operation: Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. Students can schedule appointments by phone with nurses, doctors and counselors. When possible, those appointments will be offered virtually through televisits. For appointments that require face-to-face meetings, we will have two separate waiting areas. One is for visits such as allergy shots, orthopedic injuries, gynecological and other well-student check ups, and for counseling appointments. The other waiting area is for students with upper respiratory symptoms that could be associated with the COVID virus.
- Student Evaluation and Testing. A separate area of the Health and Counseling Center will serve as a COVID testing and evaluation center for students who develop symptoms or who suspect they have had close contact with someone who has tested positive. Special ventilation has been installed and appropriate PPE will be utilized to ensure our staff can safely offer COVID testing.
- Free On-Demand Access to Medical and Mental Health Services. All students have free 24/7 access to both medical and mental health professionals through SMC Care. This telehealth support can be accessed from your cell phone or computer.
The Cushwa-Leighton Library is open to members of the Saint Mary's College community (students, faculty, and staff) with regular semester hours. Access will be via the west front door using your Saint Mary's ID card in the swipe-card reader. All patrons will be required to wear masks or cloth face coverings at all times while in the building; all staff will wear masks or cloth face coverings when not working by themselves in their own offices. All patrons will be required to maintain standard physical distance (6 feet) from each other and from library staff. All research help or reference consultations will continue to happen online, not in person. More information can be found here.
Athletics and the Angela Athletic & Wellness Complex
Beginning Monday, February 1, the Fitness Center will be open for our students, faculty, and staff, under normal hours of operation:
- Monday-Thursday 6 a.m. - 11 p.m,
- Friday from 6 a.m. - 8 p.m.,
- Saturday 8 a.m. - 8 p.m., and
- Sunday from noon to 11 p.m.
A few specifics:
- All campus fitness center users will be required to both swipe in and swipe out at the front desk.
- Our cardio and strength areas will have enhanced cleaning protocols in place. We ask that you take personal responsibility in cleaning your space before and after usage.
- In order to maintain appropriate distancing, we will remove some equipment and rotate usage, i.e., six vs.12 treadmills.
- Depending on class sizes, our physical education fitness classes may be moved to the gym floor, the field house, or even outside (weather permitting).
- Intramurals will be designed with both fun, safety, and physical distancing in mind.
Saint Mary's Gatherings
To minimize students’ exposure to COVID-19, informal social gatherings will continue to be limited to 15 people. Students and other College community members may request to organize internal events, as long as they follow participant, physical distancing and masking guidelines. Saint Mary’s students may continue to take part in tri-campus activities as allowed by each institution, while following the health and safety guidelines for each individual campus. However, this policy is subject to change, in light of the current status of the College, the tri-campus partners, and the surrounding communities.
Weekend Travel and Off Campus Socializing
The College has accelerated the academic calendar to reduce the opportunity that the coronavirus could be brought back to campus due to travel. Therefore, we strongly discourage all non-essential travel, including trips home. While students are not absolutely barred from such travel, we do ask that students who choose to leave campus for the weekend adhere to the safety guidelines established by the College while away. For the same reason, we continue to ask that students refrain from attending off-campus parties.
Your Pledge to the College
Student Government Association (SGA) is proud to support a pledge for each and every Belle to do their best in the fight against COVID-19, and to keep the Saint Mary's and greater South Bend communities safe. The pledge was composed and modeled after several colleges and universities across the United States. We believe the pledge will serve as at least a mental reminder that our community is all in this together! Having students, staff, and faculty publicly commit to do their best is symbolic of the strong Saint Mary’s community.
Please join us and sign the pledge found by clicking the button below. Our commitment to fighting the spread of COVID-19 today will have an impact on our campus tomorrow.