HR COVID-19 Message Archive

These updates are specific to Human Resources. For a list of campus updates, please refer to the Return to Campus website.

08-13-2020: Talk With Tuminez Town Hall Meeting #4
Employees were encouraged to attend the “Talk with Tuminez” Town Hall Meeting on Thursday, August 13 at 1:30 PM. This was an opportunity for employees to come together as a community to discuss the ongoing measures being taken in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Questions asked during the meeting, have been added to the Employee Frequently Asked Questions
07-28-2020: UVU Need to Know  - Return to Campus and Travel Guidance

Management Return to Campus Guidance PDF

On August 3, 2020, all offices on campus will officially reopen. Doors will be open to our students as they prepare for the beginning of fall semester on the  24th

We are excited to start another academic year, but we recognize that fall 2020 is unlike any other semester in the history of our university. The pandemic creates the need for new rules for travel and new guidelines for employees and leadership. In this email, please review the documents, expectations, and assistance available to you.

Our primary goal is to ensure employee safety and well-being while continuing to offer a high-quality educational experience that promotes student success and transforms lives. 

The transition from remote to in-office work will depend on the activities and functions occurring on campus, the duties and tasks performed by each employee, and the need to have a staff presence for student, faculty, staff, and visitor support. As our students return to campus this fall, it is critical that the college and departmental offices that engage with students and visitors are staffed during regular business office hours. The best way to do that is at the respective area’s discretion, following the guidelines below.

As employees continue returning to campus, we expect supervisors to complete the Pre-Return Checklist below for employees that do not already have a Temporary Remote Work Agreement that extends past August 3. We have also enclosed a checklist to complete as employees return to campus and a checklist to complete after employees return. For convenience, we make reference to a Staff Planning Tool, which links to an Excel document that corresponds with the checklists.
 

Pre-Return Checklist

  • Using the Staffing Planning Tool, available determine the required work responsibilities and tasks in your department, division, college, or area to ensure employee and student success. Determine the number of employees required to be on campus to perform this work. Identify individual employees whose job responsibilities require them to be primarily on campus. Limiting the number of people on campus reduces potential exposure. 
  • To help ensure flexibility and social distancing, adjust work schedules — including how and when employees report to work. (For example, implement staggered arrival and departure times, create A and B teams so the entire workforce is not in the office on the same days, etc.).
  • Continue to encourage and allow remote work as much as possible. Supervisors have the authority to approve remote work or alternative work schedules throughout the end of the calendar year when an employee has completed a Temporary Remote Work Agreement that extends past August 3.
  • Make adjustments as appropriate for employees who are members of a high-risk population or live with a high-risk individual. Temporary Remote Work Agreements and Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) accommodations are available. Do not attempt to identify and target high-risk category employees but communicate adjustment and accommodation options to all employees. Work duties and tasks may be temporarily adjusted if a Temporary Remote Work Agreement and/or ADA accommodations are approved. 
  • Consider your area’s workspace, workflow, and work priorities. Determine whether you have adequate spacing to maintain social distancing or if adjustments can be made to allow for social distancing.
  • Order appropriate PPE and sanitation supplies (hand sanitizer, disinfectant, face coverings, etc.) through the UVU Warehouse using Wolverine Marketplace
  • Review return-to-campus guidelines on the Return to Campus website. After completing the Staffing Planning Tool for each job position in your department, review your department’s return-to-campus plans with the appropriate dean or AVP.
  • After completing the Staffing Planning Tool for each job position in your department, review your department’s return-to-campus plans with the appropriate dean or AVP.

Checklist as Employees Return to Campus

Note: Custodial resources will be allocated to prioritize cleaning classroom environments. Departments should not contact Facilities to request additional services. Cleaning schedules for non-classroom environments have already been increased and can be viewed on the Custodial Services webpage.

  • Ensure that you have sufficient signage to direct traffic flow and to communicate that face coverings and social distancing are required. Signage is available on the Return to Campus website. 
  • Communicate the return-to-campus plan to your department and employees, giving as much advance notice as possible.
  • Remind employees to return all university technology equipment and materials they need to resume work on campus.

Post-Return Checklist

  • Emphasize the requirement of face coverings, physical distancing, handwashing, staying home when ill, and other safety considerations.  
  • Encourage employees to practice hand hygiene, cough etiquette, cleanliness, and rigorous sanitation.
  • Minimize in-person meetings; utilizing Microsoft Teams for meetings even when employees are working on campus. When needed, keep in-person meetings to no more than 10 people maintaining social distancing. 
  • Discourage employees from sharing other employees’ desks or equipment. When sharing is unavoidable, encourage employees to wipe down desks and equipment between uses. Sanitize shared equipment before and after each use.
  • Remind employees to self-screen daily, including taking their temperature before leaving home and staying home if they exhibit any symptoms.
  • If an employee shows COVID-19 symptoms, they must leave work immediately and contact their healthcare provider for further guidance. They may need to complete the COVID-19 Self-Reporting Form for Illness or Exposure.
  • Refer to the Employee and Supervisor Guidance documents if an employee shows symptoms or has a confirmed case of COVID-19.
  • Refer employees to the Employee Assistance Program if needed. Please see the Employee Assistance Program (EAP) webpage for additional resources available related to COVID-19.
  • Be compassionate and flexible. Check in with employees often to discuss their challenges, concerns, and questions. Contact Human Resources at (801) 863-8207 for additional assistance.

Travel Update

Travel increases the risks of coronavirus exposure for your family, friends, community, and you. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued a global level-3 warning to avoid nonessential travel and continues to discourage domestic travel. The state has also issued travel precautionary guidelines.

Acknowledging the risks and recommendations and to preserve the health of our UVU community, the following travel restrictions are extended through the end of the calendar year, effective immediately.

All nonessential university-related travel, whether in state, out of state, or international, through December 31, 2020, must be cancelled. All UVU-sponsored Study Abroad programs (credit or non-credit bearing) and any other UVU-sponsored international student travel must also be cancelled through December 31, 2020.

As an exception to the above travel restriction, travel considered business essential for the university must be approved by the divisional vice president prior to making travel arrangements. For updated information on travel restrictions, visit uvu.info. Additionally, until further notice, all future airfare must be purchased through Concur or the State Travel Office.

We continue to encourage you, when considering your personal travel choices, to follow travel advisories issued by the CDC and local and state authorities. If you plan to travel for personal reasons or recently traveled out of the state (domestic or international), you MUST fill out UVU's Self-Reporting Travel Questionnaire.

Please follow these guidelines:

  • Travel within the state is discouraged. Use internet video conferencing (Microsoft Teams is preferred) as much as possible to facilitate these meetings.
  • Deans and vice presidents will review plans for bringing visiting scholars, speakers, and consultants to campus, and postpone anything not essential to the core mission of teaching and learning.
  • All employees and students must complete the Self-Reporting Travel Questionnaire before returning to campus to document planned and recent out-of-state travel, whether it is personal or university-related. Travelers may be asked to self-isolate for 14 days.
  • For job interviews, supervisors should discuss options for avoiding travel for the benefit of all parties.
  • The International Travel Oversight Committee and Global Engagement will continue to stay in contact with any students who may be studying abroad and will continue to review these situations on a case-by-case basis.

Recent travelers to CDC level-3 countries: If you are returning from a country for which the CDC has issued a level-3 travel warning, you MUST self-isolate for 14 days upon returning home. Students, please contact the Dean of Students. Faculty and staff, please contact Human Resources.

Recent travelers to CDC level-2 countries: Those returning from a country with a CDC level-2 travel warning, watch for symptoms and practice social distancing for 14 days. If symptoms arise, please contact your medical provider.

Domestic travelers who have had close contact with anyone on the trip who has tested positive for COVID-19 should disclose the exposure, practice social distancing, and contact your medical provider if you become symptomatic.

Additional travel guidelines

Following December 31, 2020, all travel is still required to be mission-critical AND approved by an executive. Please read the Temporary Travel Request Guidelines for additional details and answers to your questions regarding these new guidelines. Please contact the UVU Travel Office at travel@uvu.edu or ext. 8965 with any questions.

Thank you for your dedication to Utah Valley University. Your flexibility, patience, and care for our Wolverine community are appreciated. If you have questions or concerns, please communicate with your supervisor or Human Resources. 

With sincere thanks,

Wayne Vaught
Provost 

Vice President of Academic Affairs 

Val Peterson
Vice President of Finance and Administration 

Marilyn Meyer

Associate Vice President of Human Resources

Chief Human Resource Officer 

07-09-2020: UVU Need to Know  - Face Coverings Required

Wolverines,

As faculty, staff, and students return to campus, we ask everyone in the UVU community to exercise the utmost caution to avoid the spread of COVID-19. Maintaining health and safety on campus is a shared responsibility. To protect the campus community and prevent an outbreak of COVID-19, certain safety procedures are being implemented. Based on CDC guidelines, UVU is requiring everyone to wear a face covering in shared public spaces on campus, including our classrooms. To help make this possible, the university has provided a face covering for each faculty and staff member. Masks have also been ordered for students.

It is important to recognize that the primary purpose of wearing a face covering is to prevent the spread of the disease by those with the virus — when you wear a face covering, you protect those around you. When others wear a face covering, they protect you. Together, we protect our community.  

Face coverings (e.g., masks, scarves, gaiters, bandanas) are required inside university buildings. They are also required outside when maintaining a 6-foot physical distance is not possible. Face coverings must cover both the nose and the mouth.

The following guidelines are intended to minimize ambiguity and promote consistency across campus in complying with face-covering requirements:

  • All employees of the university are required to wear a face covering while working on campus as a condition of their employment. Employees who disregard the requirement to wear a face covering may be in violation of UVU policy and state and federal law or regulation and subject to corrective action.
  • Face coverings are required in all shared public spaces such as hallways, restrooms, study and breakroom areas, classrooms, conference rooms, etc., and when maintaining a 6-foot distance is not possible outside.
  • Employees working in an open office environment (e.g., cubicles), where multiple individuals may be in close proximity to one another for extended periods of time, must each wear a face covering while others are present.
  • While others are not present, face coverings are not required to be worn by an employee who is
  • The sole occupant of a fully enclosed room or office;
    • The sole occupant of a partially enclosed room, office, or similar space, including a cubicle, that is enclosed on at least three sides by walls or other physical barriers or dividers at a height that reaches no lower than the top of the employee’s head when the employee is seated; or
    • Seated or stationary and maintains a physical distance of at least six feet from any other individual.
    • Face coverings are not required outside of buildings if 6-foot physical distancing is maintained.
    • Face coverings are not required for individuals traveling alone in a university vehicle.
    • Face coverings are not required for individuals eating or drinking and maintaining a physical distance of at least six feet from any other individual who is not from the same household or residence.
    • In certain cases, the use of a face covering is not advised. These cases should be addressed on a case-by-case basis with the employee’s supervisor and, if necessary, with the employee accommodations coordinator in Human Resources. Such cases include
    • Individuals with a medical condition for whom wearing a face covering could cause harm or obstruct breathing. 
    • Individuals with hearing impairment or communicating with an individual who is hearing impaired, where the ability to see the mouth is essential for communication.
    • Face coverings may be temporarily removed when obtaining a service involving the nose, mouth, or face for which temporary removal of the face covering is necessary to perform the service.
    • Face coverings should be changed or laundered routinely.

We are all anxious for everyday living to return to normal, but we must recognize that the COVID-19 pandemic may be with us for some time. We are thoughtfully modifying how we teach, interact with, and serve one another. We are diligently monitoring national, state, and local health reports and guidelines. We are working with the other institutions of higher education to develop best practices, and we are implementing safety measures to stop the spread of COVID-19. We are motivated by an overriding desire to protect the health and well-being of our Wolverine community while continuing to deliver an exceptional educational experience.

Thank you for your patience, perseverance, and adaptability as we navigate this unusual time and evolving needs.

Sincerely,

Wayne Vaught

Provost 

Vice President of Academic Affairs 


Val Peterson

Vice President of Finance and Administration 

 06-26-2020: UVU Need to Know - Governor's Executive Order on Masks

Wolverines,

On Thursday, June 25, 2020, Governor Gary Herbert signed an executive order that requires face coverings at all state facilities under his office's purview, including state higher educational facilities. 

Per this executive order, the wearing of masks while in public spaces at Utah Valley University is required. It is not necessary to wear a mask when alone in an office or space. Remember, this mandate protects those around you. To protect each other, we must ALL wear face coverings. We understand there are situations when a student cannot feasibly wear a mask due to a disability, phobia, or other reasons. These cases should be referred to the Office of Accessibility Services, and that office will determine if an accommodation is needed. Employees who cannot wear a face covering may contact Human Resources.

In conjunction with the governor's mandate, we also ask that you continue to follow other health and safety guidelines, including:

  • If you are ill, please stay home: If you become ill with respiratory symptoms (even if they seem to be minor) such as a cough, fever, shortness of breath, body aches, etc., you need to stay home and are expected to contact your supervisor. Please check for symptoms each day before coming to campus.
  • Practice social distancing: To the extent possible, social distancing, with a distance of at least six feet from the next person, will continue. This means meetings should continue via Microsoft Teams or in large spaces that allow appropriate social distancing. 
  • Practice good hygiene: Continue to follow hygiene standards, including washing your hands with soap and water frequently, avoiding touching your face, and covering coughs or sneezes. 
  • Do not congregate: For your health and the safety of others, do not gather in break rooms or other small spaces for breaks or lunch. Utilize the many large areas available on UVU campuses where you and others can safely practice social distancing. 

Thank you for your assistance in maintaining a healthy environment for our Utah Valley University community. 

Sincerely,

Wayne Vaught

Provost

Vice President of Academic Affairs

 

Val Peterson

Vice President of Finance and Administration

 

06-24-2020: UVU Need to Know  -Important Return to Campus Update

To Our UVU Community,

As we continue to monitor the evolving situation created by COVID-19, we want to let you know that we are modifying some of the dates related to travel, events, and our return to campus. With the increase of cases both statewide and in Utah County, and out of an abundance of caution, we are making the following adjustments:

Employees scheduled to return to campus on July 6 will continue to work remotely until August 3, 2020. 

Employees who have already returned to campus may have a conversation with their supervisor to see if there is flexibility with their individual position to include full or partial remote work. Supervisors have full authority to approve employee requests to work remotely and are encouraged to be accommodating when possible. If you have not already completed a Temporary Remote Work Agreement that extends past August 3 and you plan to continue working from home, a new agreement must be completed. For our employees who would like to come back to campus before August 3, please talk with your supervisor about returning early and maintaining social distancing and health guidelines. Your supervisor is the best resource to discuss any questions or concerns regarding your work situation. For more information about what to expect when returning to work on campus, and training for both supervisors and employees, visit the Return to Campus webpage.

All university-sponsored events, conferences, large gatherings, and on-campus events are now cancelled until August 3, 2020.

Per Utah guidelines and recommendations of local health authorities, on-campus events are cancelled throughout the summer semester. Pre-designated face-to-face second block courses will continue as scheduled.

Commencement 2020 will also occur under modified conditions on August 19. More information regarding celebration plans for UVU graduates will be released later this week.

All non-essential university-related travel, whether in state, out of state, or international, through August 3, 2020, must be cancelled

All UVU-sponsored study abroad programs (credit- or non-credit bearing) and any other UVU-sponsored student, faculty, and staff travel must also be cancelled through August 3. Due to the increasing number of COVID cases in the state, all in-state travel considered business essential for the university must be approved by the divisional vice president. If travel involves the participation of students, it will also need Provost Wayne Vaught’s approval. For updated information on travel restrictions, visit uvu.info. Additionally, until further notice, all future airfare must be purchased through Concur or the State Travel Office. 

Please communicate with your supervisors if you have questions regarding the extension of these dates or any other concerns. 

The health of our Utah Valley University community remains our number one priority as we continue to work together diligently to meet the needs and expectations of our students. Thank you for your flexibility, resilience, and dedication during these unusual circumstances. 

Sincerely,

Wayne Vaught

Provost

Vice President of Academic Affairs

 

Val Peterson

Vice President of Finance and Administration

06-18-2020: Work From Home Expectations

Dear Colleagues,

We appreciate those who have worked diligently to keep the university's services and operations running smoothly during the COVID-19 pandemic remotely and on campus. UVU continues to operate under modified conditions. A portion of our staff who were working remotely returned to campus or are anticipated to return to campus in the coming weeks, while others have worked with their supervisor and updated their remote work agreements.

 As a reminder, employees who are working remotely are to adhere to the performance expectations outlined in the temporary remote work agreement, including:

Remain accessible by phone or electronically during the telecommuting work schedule, particularly during core business hours

  • Establish effective communication with co-workers and those served by the department, and regularly discuss the status of work responsibilities and areas of concern with their supervisor
  • Be available for teleconferences scheduled by their supervisor and/or the university on an as-needed basis
  • Request supervisor approval in advance of working any overtime hours (nonexempt employees)
  • Submit leave requests for any vacation, personal, or sick leave during the period of the agreement

During the summer, we recognize many employees will be taking time away from work for vacation to refresh and recharge. Whether working remotely or on campus, employees taking approved leave are strongly encouraged to provide an auto-reply email and update their voicemail to manage expectations of those communicating with them.

 Human Resources has developed Return to Campus trainings for employees and supervisors. These trainings and the Return to Campus website include valuable information that will answer many questions about what is expected, what safety precautions are being taken, and what protocols are in place to provide you with a positive, safe return to campus. As leaders, supervisors are expected to complete the supervisor training, review the Welcome Back to the Den guidebook and Conversation Guide for supervisors, and openly discuss any questions or concerns their employees may have regarding telecommuting.

Again, we thank you for your efforts to meet our UVU community's needs by offering exceptional care, expecting exceptional accountability, and fostering exceptional results for our students.

 

 Sincerely,

 Linda Makin - Vice President of Planning, Budget, and Human Resources

 Marilyn Meyer - Chief Human Resource Officer / Associate Vice President of Human Resources

06-17-2020: Talk With Tuminez Town Hall Meeting #3

 

Employees were encouraged to attend the “Talk with Tuminez” Town Hall Meeting on Wednesday, June 17 at 3-4 PM. This was an opportunity for employees to come together as a community to discuss the ongoing measures being taken in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Questions asked during the meeting, have been added to the Employee Frequently Asked Questions

 

06-05-2020: UVU Need to Know - Return to Work at UVU

Wolverines,

On Monday, June 8, we will welcome another portion of our community back to campus. As determined by their immediate supervisors, employees in categories one and two will again occupy the spaces left empty by COVID-19. We are looking forward to your return to UVU. We appreciate the flexibility, creativity, and collegiality demonstrated during these trying times. Other category two employees will return on June 22 and July 6. This phased approach of returning to work is being done in coordination with the state and the Utah System of Higher Education. For more information on the phased return to work, please refer to the Human Resources Coronavirus Employee Guide. You will also find updated information regarding how to keep you and those you care about healthy. We understand that some of you may have reservations about returning because you are a high-risk individual or live with a high-risk individual. If you fall into that category, please contact Human Resources. 

Your well-being is essential. You will return to cleaned and sanitized workspaces. Other precautions are also being taken in conjunction with state and CDC guidelines:

  • Sick employees should stay at home.
  • Hand sanitizer stations can be found throughout campus.
  • Social distancing and healthy hygiene practices are expected.
  • Increased airflow has been added to buildings.
  • Masks are being provided to every employee and will be made available by contacting your supervisor. We strongly encourage you to wear the mask when you are near other people. As a campus community, we promise exceptional care. We are asking everyone to remember that you are protecting your co-workers and their families by wearing your mask. When you see them wearing a mask, they are doing so out of consideration for you.  

Please refer to the Return to Campus webpage for additional details on expectations and transition tips.

All main campus facilities will be open beginning June 8 between the hours of 7 a.m. and 8 p.m., Monday–Friday, with the exception of the McKay Education Building, the Melisa Nellesen Autism Center, and Wee Care Center. UVU’s Wasatch Campus will re-open June 15. 

The Student Life & Wellness Center will also re-open and will operate from 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. Monday–Friday, and from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. on Saturdays. Those who wish to utilize the facilities will be required to comply with state guidelines, which include maintaining a social distance of 10 feet and completing a health survey and temperature screening. Additional measures are being taken to sanitize equipment.

Campus food services include 

Grab-and-go food services are available Monday-Friday at these locations:

  • Chick-fil-A                    
  • Mom Fulton's Café      
  • Taco Bell                      

Thank you again for your dedication, resilience, and all that you are doing to continue to support students and colleagues. We look forward to your return.

Sincerely,

Wayne Vaught

Provost 

Vice President of Academic Affairs 

 

Val Peterson

Vice President of Finance and Administration

 

06-04-2020: HR Matters - Returning to Campus Guidance

As you prepare to return to campus in accordance with your division’s phased return-to-campus plan outlined in the May 21 email notification, we know you may have many questions. To help you navigate through this process, we’ve put together several resources to help you.

 

  • A Welcome Back to the Den employee guidebook: This guidebook provides information and resources to help you with your questions and concerns, including a daily self-assessment guide and FAQs.
  • Short courses on returning to work after quarantine: These presentations (each 10 minutes or less) will help you prepare for returning to work.
  • A Return to Campus website: This website will be coming soon and include links to the above information along with additional information as it becomes available.

As we continue to navigate changes during this unprecedented time, we thank you for your flexibility and adaptation. We are here to assist and provide you with the resources that you may need as you transition back to work. If you have any questions after consulting the resources provided, please contact Human Resources at (801) 863-8207.

 

Marilyn Meyer

Associate Vice President of Human Resources

Chief Human Resource Officer

06-01-2020: HR Matters - Temporary Remote Work Agreements Update

As employees begin to return to campus according to the phased return-to-campus plan outlined in the May 21 email notification, existing Temporary Remote Work Agreements related to COVID-19 will expire according to the group your supervisor has assigned for you (Group A’s forms expire on June 8; Group B’s on June 22; and Group C’s on July 6.) Supervisors are authorized to approve remote work (including flexible remote work schedules) past those dates wherever possible for positions in which work can be done remotely and not impede University functions. In accordance with each division’s return-to-campus plan, employees authorized to continue temporary remote work (including flexible remote work schedules) must submit, with supervisors’ approval, a new Temporary Remote Work Agreement relating to COVID-19. Before any continuation of remote work (including flexible remote work schedules), supervisor approval is required to ensure proper coverage of all essential functions. Agreements are not to exceed December 31, 2020.

05-26-2020:  HR Matters - Helpful Information Regarding Phased Return to Campus

Helpful Information for Employees Regarding the University’s Phased Return to Campus

Welcome back to campus! You’ll notice various changes in the way our workplace looks, as well as new practices and protocols. We understand these changes may be difficult, and we are here to support you. As part of that effort, one mask is being provided to each of our employees. Please contact your vice president, associate vice president, or dean to receive your mask. Our goal is to collaboratively ensure you feel safe and secure, so together we can navigate the complexities of our “new normal.”

The purpose of this document is to assist you in understanding university best practices and guidelines to ensure a safe work environment for everyone. Utah Valley University, in consultation with Emergency and Safety Management, will follow the guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and state and local health departments regarding phasing UVU back to traditional work on campus.

 

1. Keep up to date with accurate information.

It is difficult to make properly informed decisions based on speculation, rumors, and assumptions. Therefore, you need to stay up to date with accurate information and make decisions based on facts. You may find up-to-date information on UVU’s COVID-19 websites:

 Additional information may be found in communications sent through HRMatters and UVAnnounce.

 

2. Communicate with your manager.

Communicate openly with your manager so all parties have the correct information to allow for any needed support. Do not assume that your manager knows any specifics regarding your situation. We are navigating a new work environment with individual stressors and personal situations that can change rapidly. Open and timely communication not only assists in building trust but will also temper frustrations and reduce the spread of rumors that may cause unneeded anxiety in the workplace.

Before returning to campus, you are encouraged to have a 1:1 conversation with your manager. Here are some suggestions of topics that would help make this conversation beneficial to both parties: 

 

  • The well-being of you and your loved ones
  • Challenges and successes of working from home (if applicable)
  • Your comfort level and main concerns (if any) regarding returning to work on campus
  • Considerations or actions that would help you feel more comfortable
  • The impact of a continued remote work atmosphere (if applicable)
  • Factors that would make the transition back to campus easier

 

3. You have a safe platform to raise concerns.

UVU is committed to giving you a safe platform wherein concerns can be raised. This includes mental health anxieties regarding the risk of having contracted or being exposed to COVID-19 and adjusting to current life situations. A proactive approach can increase your overall well-being. It is important to remember that your mental health is just as important as your physical health. Experiencing stress, anxiety, depression, grief, and/or uncertainty is normal when dealing with unusual circumstances that are out of our control. Maintaining good mental health can help you and your family better cope with COVID-19 and the uncertainty it is creating. HR Benefits has compiled a list of resources available to help during this time of uncertainty. 

 Also, we ask you to continue to provide useful feedback to supervisors and Human Resources regarding any concerns. Human Resources is aware there may be nervousness and anxiety in the workplace, and possibly even conflicts, given the current situation. Addressing these concerns early on allows for proper care and ensures apprehensions do not escalate into larger grievances.  

 

4. If you need flexibility, ask for it.

This is a time of high stress and anxiety for everyone, including you, your supervisor, and your colleagues. Everyone must understand there will be different needs depending on individual circumstances (e.g., those with young children may need more time off or flexible work arrangements). This time of uncertainty will pass, but what will be remembered is how we treat each other long after the threat of the virus subsides.

 

5. One size may not fit all.

While consistency in treatment is generally to be favored, be conscious that one size may not fit all. For example, continued remote work may not be an appropriate step moving forward. While the university is currently working on implementing safety practices, it is important to remember that protection is an issue everyone needs to address. While on campus, please follow the guidance set forth by the CDC and local health departments. This includes social distancing, practicing proper hand hygiene, limiting the touching of your face, and properly covering your face when in public areas.

While returning to campus will be a phased effort, please note the university is working to ensure all departments are set up to handle safety protocols before employees return to work on campus.

The CDC has provided recommendations for individuals who should exhibit extra caution, as there are factors that increase risk. If you believe you fall under the high-risk category based on CDC guidance, you are encouraged to work with your supervisor and Human Resources without fear of discrimination or retaliation from the university. You are encouraged to investigate the following options regarding high risk:

  1. Have an open conversation with your supervisor regarding possible continued remote work (possible updated agreement may be required), updated schedules (if applicable), and department adherence to safety protocols.
  2. Reach out to Human Resources for possible assistance with extra leave per the new Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA).
  3. Start the interactive process with Human Resources to review possible adjustments that can assist you in performing the essential functions of your position.

If you are in doubt about a situation or how to proceed, please feel free to reach out to Human Resources for guidance. 

05-21-2020: Phased Plan for Returning to Work

Dear Colleagues,

We have begun our coordinated, phased return to on-campus work announced on May 15.  As we move forward, the health and safety of our students, faculty, staff, and visitors remain the number one priority.

The “Stabilization Phase” of Returning to Campus

Like several other universities, UVU is currently in the Stabilization Phase, which is anticipated to last until September 30, 2020. This specific phase applies to campuses currently operating under Yellow Level state recommendations. 

The different phases are determined by the level of disease transmission in the community and the resources that are available to protect the safety and health of employees and students. Managing health risks during all phases will require the identification, containment, and mitigation of the virus. It will also require diligence and a commitment from all of us to keep everyone safe. 

The timing and specifics of the plan are contingent on the progression of COVID-19 in our area, and local, state, and federal guidelines. We must also consider the complex structure of UVU and reserve the right to make decisions based on the specific needs of our campus community, which means that some decisions may look different than those of the nation, state, or county based on case numbers within our service area, specific situation, hospitalizations, the university’s ability to maintain safety measures, and readiness.

We invite you to familiarize yourself with the documents outlining the protocol for this Stabilization Phase

Target Return Dates for Category II Employees 

We have already welcomed our first employee group (Category I) back to campus, and the next wave of employees (Category II) will be returning to campus in the coming weeks. As we move through this phase, the divisional/school leadership teams are working with their respective employees to determine who is considered a Category II employee. 

We are using the following schedule to bring back our Category II employees: 

      Group A: Employees return June 8 

      Group B: Employees return June 22

      Group C: Employees return July 6

      Group D: High Risk: Consult supervisors regarding a continued remote work agreement

As we carefully bring back additional personnel in a phased approach, supervisors are determining how to increase functionality and meet the needs of their division, students, and employees on campus. Supervisors will be contacting employees to identify the specific date of return. Those who are in the high-risk category or feel they cannot return to campus are encouraged to communicate with their managers or Human Resources.  

In addition, on June 8, all buildings on UVU’s Orem, West, Airport, and Lehi campuses will reopen and resume normal hours of operation. When Wasatch County is transitioned from Orange to a Yellow Health Risk status by the state, the Wasatch Campus will also reopen 21 days after that announcement.

Our Return-to-Campus Strategies 

We have put additional environmental controls, Human Resources employee health and wellness, and individual protective measures in place and are using the following strategies to bring employees back to campus: 

  • Staffing: Increase staffing incrementally to gradually expand operations while maintaining recommended social-distancing guidelines
  • Hygiene: Increased hygiene and sanitation practices
  • Innovation: Continue to promote innovative work practices
  • Monitoring: Monitor health to ensure the well-being of our campus community
  • Minimize non-essential travel: Any approved UVU travel is subject to national, state, and local regulations and guidance

We ask that you read the documents provided to ensure that you understand the expectations and requirements of returning to work on campus, and are aware of the resources and options available to you. 

In addition, we recognize that this a fluid situation that requires flexibility. The decisions made now are informed by data, done in conjunction with local health and governmental leaders, and aligned with the Utah System of Higher Education. Updates will continue as conclusions are made, as changes are needed, and as we move into the “new normal.” As we do so, we encourage you to communicate your concerns and questions. 

Finally, and most importantly, we want to thank you for your efforts to provide essential services to our students as they further their education, and we extend our sincere appreciation for the collegiality, care, and assistance you have provided to each other.

Sincerely,

Wayne Vaught

Provost

Vice President of Academic Affairs

 

Marilyn Meyer

Associate Vice President of Human Resources

Chief Human Resource Officer 

05-15-2020: PACE Email - Utah moving from Orange to Yellow

All employees received a UVUNEEDTOKNOW email this morning regarding the Governor’s announcement of Utah moving from orange to yellow risk phase starting on Saturday. This is great news for UVU and we appreciate all the diligence and hard work of so many across campus as we prepare for and plan our return to campus. More details will be coming in the next few weeks of how and when we will all be transitioning back to campus. This will continue to be a progressive transition and your supervisors will be able to answer your questions as we move forward. As the email stated, “For most students and employees, the move will not significantly impact your current learning and working activities. Still, it will guide the future expansion of activities as we continue the transition into the ‘new normal.’”

Thanks to you all for helping us keep UVU moving forward and keeping our students, faculty and staff safe during this challenging time.

PACE update on COVID-19 for Staff

For current notifications: uvu.info

For COVID information: UVU Safety/ Emergency Management

FOR STAFF/ EMPLOYEE updates: Coronavirus Employee Guide

FOR STAFF/ EMPLOYEE FAQ:  Employee FAQ

05-15-2020: Provost Email - Utah's orange to yellow transitions and what it means for UVU

Wolverines,

Governor Gary Herbert announced on Thursday that a majority of the state, including Utah County, will transition from orange, the moderate risk phase, to the yellow phase, or the low-risk phase, on Saturday as part of the Utah Leads Together 2.0 plan for reopening Utah amid the coronavirus pandemic. The move from orange to yellow impacts everyone except high-risk individuals.

You may now be wondering what this means for our Utah Valley University campus community.

Under the state’s yellow level, groups of 50 or fewer are allowed to interact. Some sports can resume with advised symptom health checks, and limited out-of-state travel can occur.

Employers are to exercise discretion with remote work and returning to onsite work and are encouraged to make flexible work arrangements, follow hygiene guidelines, and continue social distancing in the workplace. Face coverings are to be worn when social distancing is difficult. No one who is ill should be on campus. Safety remains the number one priority.

For most students and employees, the move will not significantly impact your current learning and working activities. Still, it will guide the future expansion of activities as we continue the transition into the “new normal.”

A majority of students will continue the first block of the summer semester in all online courses. We hope to provide some face-to-face learning opportunities during the second block summer session. The university plans a mixture of online, blended, and face-to-face learning opportunities during the fall semester. The details of this phased approach are currently in the works, and you can expect more communication regarding UVU’s plans soon.

As we announced during the “Talk With Tuminez” Town Hall on Wednesday, employees will continue to work remotely, if possible, for the time being. Employees will return to campus in phases depending on the work that needs to be completed. For the coming months, it is likely that many staff who are now working remotely will continue to do so. Some may also work part of the time on campus, and remotely. Your supervisors will communicate specific guidance going forward.

Meanwhile, the following buildings will reopen for limited usage on Monday, May 18:

  • The dōTERRA Wolverine Training Dome
    • Open to specific athletes and trainers 
  • Health Sciences Building
    • Open to specific training programs 
  • Utah Fire and Rescue Academy
    • Open to specific training programs 
  • Aviation
    • Open to specific training programs 

We are pleased to see the progress that has been made through the efforts of everyone to stop the spread of COVID-19. An abundance of caution remains necessary as we work together to continue to provide an environment where educational opportunities transform lives, and where exceptional care for one another and exceptional accountability lead to exceptional results.

Thank you for your patience and efforts during this unusual period. We look forward to a time when we can all be together again on UVU campuses.

Sincerely,

Wayne Vaught

Provost/Vice President – Academic Affairs 

05-12-2020: Talk with Tuminez Town Hall Meeting #2

Employees were encouraged to attend the “Talk with Tuminez” Town Hall Meeting on Wednesday May 12, 2020 at 1-2 PM. This was an opportunity for employees to come together as a community to discuss the ongoing measures being taken in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Questions asked during the meeting, have been added to the Employee Frequently Asked Questions. Employee Access: my.uvu.edu/talk.

05-01-2020: HR Letter - Governor's Utah Leads Together 2.0 & USHE Task Force

Governor Gary Herbert announced the relaxing of restrictions implemented to contain the spread of the coronavirus, as part of Utah Leads Together 2.0. The changes that take effect today will allow the reopening of some sectors of the economy with restrictions and provide for the return of some employees to work. So, what does that mean for all of us?

 The Utah System of Higher Education’s COVID-19 Task Force is planning for future operations at the state’s universities and colleges in a way that protects the safety of students, faculty, and staff. As previously communicated, we anticipate UVU employees designated as Category 2, who are currently working remotely, will continue to work remotely through the end of May.

In order to facilitate academic and operational continuity, some UVU employees may have been or may be notified by their supervisors that they will be returning to work on a UVU campus before May 31. Please be assured that UVU is following the directives of the governor’s plan, the State Health Department, and the CDC as we begin to reopen facilities and as more employees return to campus.

 In order to keep ourselves and each other safe and healthy, all employees working on any campus (including high-risk employees and those who live with individuals who may be high risk) are requested to adhere to the following:

  •  If you are ill, please stay home:
    • If you become ill with respiratory symptoms such as a cough, fever, shortness of breath, body aches, etc., you need to stay home and are expected to contact your supervisor. 
  • Wear a mask:
    • A mask is required to be worn while in public spaces at all times. It is not necessary to wear a mask when you are alone in an office or a space. Remember that wearing a mask protects those around you. To really protect each other, we must ALL wear a mask. 
  • Practice social distancing:
    • To the extent possible, social distancing, with a distance of at least six feet from the next person, will continue. This means that meetings should continue via Microsoft Teams or in large spaces that allow appropriate social distancing.   
  • Practice good hygiene:
    • Continue to follow hygiene standards, including washing your hands with soap and water frequently, avoiding touching your face, and covering coughs or sneezes. 
  • Do not congregate:
    • For your health and the safety of others, do not congregate in break rooms or other small spaces for breaks or lunch. Utilize the many large spaces available on UVU campuses where you and others can safely practice social distancing. 

For UVU to maintain a healthy workplace environment, we must each act on these directives and demonstrate exceptional care and exceptional accountability for ourselves and our colleagues during this time. 

Utah Valley University continues to employ a variety of measures to manage the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic, with maximum safety for every Wolverine as our number one priority. We particularly appreciate the care provided by our facilities teams to create and maintain a healthy work environment.  

We will continue to communicate information and guidance as UVU moves forward and begins to reopen facilities, programs, and services. We look forward to the safe return of employees and students to all campuses.  

Sincerely, 

Marilyn Meyer - AVP of Human Resources/Chief Human Resource Officer 

Robin Ebmeyer - Director of Emergency Management, Environmental Health, and Safety

04-28-2020: USHE COVID-19 Task Force

As part of Utah’s recovery efforts, the Utah System of Higher Education (USHE) has organized a special USHE COVID-19 Task Force that is actively planning for future operations in a way that protects the safety of students, faculty, and staff.

The task force recognizes that “recovery is not like flipping a switch; it’s more like moving a dial.” The work of this task force will continue to be in step with the governor’s Utah Leads Together 2.0 as they develop a comprehensive plan and timeline. We expect Utah Valley University’s return to normal operating conditions to be a phased approach.

As we await specific guidance from the USHE COVID-19 Task Force, UVU will continue to operate under modified conditions. Thus, employees designated as Category 2, who are currently working remotely, will continue to do so through May 31. Human Resources will update all agreements to align with university direction, and no new agreements will need to be signed.

Thank you for your efforts to help UVU fulfill its mission while adhering to public health recommendations to keep our community healthy. We will continue to inform you of UVU’s plans to reopen facilities and services, and we invite you to access updated information regarding UVU’s response to COVID-19 at uvu.info.

Stay healthy and safe!

04-08-2020: Talk with Tuminez Town Hall Meeting #1

Employees were encouraged to attend the “Talk with Tuminez” Town Hall Meeting on Wednesday April 8, 2020 at 1-2 PM. This was an opportunity for employees to come together as a community to discuss the ongoing measures being taken in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Questions asked during the meeting, have been added to the Employee Frequently Asked QuestionsEmployee Access: my.uvu.edu/talk.

04-08-2020: Travel and Summer Events Update

For the protection of Utah Valley University students, faculty, and staff, and in accordance with CDC and state guidelines for COVID-19, all non-essential university-related travel is cancelled through June 26, 2020. This includes all Study Abroad programs (credit- or non-credit-bearing), and any other UVU-sponsored international and domestic student, faculty, and staff travel. This date is subject to change based on the direction received from the state. Please visit uvu.info for detailed information.

In addition, all university-sponsored events are cancelled through June 26. 

We appreciate your patience as we continue to make adjustments to align with current conditions and governmental recommendations.

04-03-2020: Governor's Stay Safe, Stay Home Directive

Given the Governor’s Stay Safe, Stay Home directive, UVU employees are being asked to work from home whenever possible.  This is necessary to keep Utah residents safe during the COVID-19 pandemic. The campus will be functioning with only minimum basic operations and services. UVU will suspend on-campus operations except for minimum basic operations and services that cannot be conducted remotely.

 

The services that will remain in operation include:

  •  Building systems and custodial services (reduced levels)
  • Emergency response (police, fire, emergency medical services and environmental health and safety
  • Emergency management)
  • IT services associated with on-site support of campus IT infrastructure and remote learning and working
  • Classroom and laboratory instruction support services for remote learning. (Deans and chairs will determine what on-campus essential support may be needed).
  • Animal care or animal or other physical research
  • Library and open computer lab
  • Warehouse/receiving

 

The following basic operations and services will continue to be provided remotely:

  •  Human Resources
  • Finance
  • Counseling and Psychological Services
  • Advising Services
  • Admissions
  • Financial Aid & Scholarships
  • Registration/Enrollment
  • Procurement

 

Please contact or refer to specific areas website for the most up to date operating conditions as modified operating hours, may change based on the rapidly changing situations and directives.

03-17-2020: Operating Under Modified Conditions
In response to the evolving COVID-19 situation, UVU is implementing special protocols to remain open and operation under modified condition, while allowing some employees to work remotely. Services on campus will be limited while the campus remains open and operating under modified conditions. All employees are to work with their supervisor to assess how their job function fits within the guidance. Detailed guidance has been provided to supervisors. Employees approved to transition to work remotely must complete the Temporary Remote Work Agreement Form in coordination with their supervisor. The University reserves the right to end this agreement at any time, and require employees to return to their regular work location. 
03-16-2020: Flexibility for Week

On March 13, Governor Herbert announced the closing of public K-12 schools from March 16-27. Utah Valley University remains open under modified operations. We understand that these K-12 closures may cause unexpected disruptions for a portion of our employees in balancing their work responsibilities and childcare needs.

 

For employees in this situation, the university is providing additional flexibility for work schedules, including work from home, during the week of March 16. We hope this allows employees to address childcare arrangements. Employees must contact their supervisor to determine appropriate modifications to work schedules and/or location. Please note that Friday, March 20 is a UVU holiday and campus will be closed.  

 

Thank you in advance for your continued support and understanding as we navigate this global issue together. As the university continues to serve our students, this situation requires us to use our best judgment to balance exceptional care with exceptional accountability.