Housing Coronavirus Response
The University of Central Oklahoma is continuously monitoring the spread of COVID-19 in the communities surrounding the university and in the communities our students call home. The university COVID-19 webpages are updated regularly with important updates to services and resources for students, faculty, and staff.
As the university continues its response to COVID-19, steps are being taken in and around the residence halls and dining facilities to prevent and slow the spread of the virus. Residence halls remain open under a limited occupancy model and our dining partners at Chartwells Dining Services and custodial partners at WFF Facility Services are providing increased services to aid in these efforts.
Currently, the physical Housing and Residential Engagement Office is closed. The campus community and potential residents can contact our offices remotely on various platforms.Call: 405-974-2746
WFF, our custodial partner, is performing cleanings more frequently of "high-touch areas" in the residence halls and community restrooms. These areas include door, shower, toilet, and faucet handles in the restrooms, as well as door handles, door jams and handrails throughout the hallways, stairwells and elevators.
Ayers Kitchen is the only location for dining on campus until further notice. All meals are served in a to-go style container from a limited menu offering. A vegetarian dish is available on the Homestyle Station every day or a black bean burger can be requested.
A Pop-up Market, located in the entry area of Ayers Kitchen, has a selection of snacks and beverages available for purchase.
Ayers Kitchen current operating hours are:
Meal swipes, Flex Dollars, cash, and credit or debit cards are accepted at this dining location.
Please note: Reusable cups are no longer being accepted for refills in Ayers Kitchen.
Staff remain committed to ensuring residents have a safe and healthy environment for the duration of their stay in our halls while they focus on their remote studies. They remain available via online platforms for engagement and support moving forward. Programming will continue in an alternative format and residents can expect to be contacted by their resident assistant about activities for the rest of the semester. Residents should continue to check their UCO email.
Maintenance services continue and work orders can be submitted via text message to Housing. Please be patient with response times due to the limited staffing that may be available.
Social distancing of at least six feet should be maintained at all times. Residents are encouraged to avoid gathering in groups. No guests are allowed.
Residence hall lobbies and community spaces will be closed to enforce the need for social distancing between residents. Residents who need to utilize the pianos in these areas for classes should utilize the provided cleaners to clean the keys before and after use.
Residents can send and pickup mail from R.K. Black from 10 a.m. - 4 p.m. Monday - Friday. Residents should enter the Nigh University Center through the first-floor west side door by the Digital Den computer lab.
Can I stay on campus?
University housing is operating under a limited occupancy model. Following federal, state, and local guidelines for shelter-in-place mandates, we strongly encourage those who can return to home to do so. Residents who need to stay in campus housing due to extenuating circumstances should contact housing via email, if they have not already done so.
Please note that due to the closure of Murdaugh Hall and West Hall, residents who elect to stay may be moved to the other locations to ensure operational efficiency and to allow for more private accommodations. Notices regarding moves will be sent out after April 1.
What is Housing doing to address covid-19 concerns?
Housing is working with university administration and local health officials to coordinate the responses and preparation for COVID-19. We continue to implement federal, state, and local guidelines to help us make informed decisions and protect our residents. Our custodial vendor is conducting additional cleanings of high-touch areas in addition to their general flu season protocols. In the event a case of COVID-19 is identified in the residence halls, plans are in place to properly isolate the resident away from the rest of the population.
Additionally, spray bottles of a bleach solution will be provided to residents with a shared common area that are not serviced by housekeeping. Students should take time to read the safety information of the product before use. Replacement solution will be placed at the exterior exits of the University Suites and in the breezeways of the University Commons. Residents are advised to replace the solution in the bottles every three days.
To dispose of old solution, pour down a drain or into the provided containers at the replacement stations.
Is Housing monitoring the health of campus residents during this time?
Residents will be contacted intermittently through the text service to request an update on symptoms. This text line can also be used to self-report symptoms. A limited number of thermometers are available upon request by calling Housing at 405-974-2746 or texting the Housing Care Line at 1-405-974-3663.
If you present symptoms, we request that students continue to self-report an update of symptoms and temperature twice a day through this service for monitoring. It is also recommended they maintain a health log. All updates flagged as potential COVID-19 cases will be consulted on with university health representatives.
I am experiencing heightened anxiety due to this crisis. What resources are available?
The Center for Counseling and Well-Being remains available to take virtual appointments and continues to provide resources and programs to help students through this time.
- To setup a virtual appointment, you can do so through the CCWB online scheduling system.
- Seek comfort by engaging with peers in one of the CCWB's Virtual Groups. These groups meet online about topics such as mindfulness, study habits, and student success.
- Utilize the free Therapy Assistance Online program, an online interface with activities to help overcome anxiety, depression, and other concerns.
Will I get a refund if I cancel my spring housing contract?
Students who choose to check-out of Murdaugh Hall, West Hall, The Quad, and the University Suites by March 31 will not be charged for their housing or dining for the period of April 1- May 8. Those who choose to check out after March 31 will receive only a partial adjustment of charges, with exceptions for those with extenuating circumstances. Residents who have paid their housing and dining in full will receive a credit applied to their student account. Residents who have not completed the payment plan for housing and dining will have the relevant charges waived and any remaining balance will be refunded.
Will Commons residents get a refund?
Commons residents who choose to cancel their contract will have their accounts adjusted according to the Student Housing Agreement. This provides for a prorated credit of 50% of the remaining balance of a resident's housing and dining.
As of April 17, 2020, these credits have been applied to student accounts.
How do I cancel my contract?Students who have not already done so and would like to checkout of their housing assignment are required to complete the following steps:
- Complete the Intent to Cancel form.
- Clean and remove all belongings from your space.
- Obtain a checkout envelope from your residence hall front desk.
- After completing the instructions on the envelope, place your key in the envelope and deposit it in the drop box located on the southwest corner outside Bausher Place.
What if I moved off campus during spring break?
Residents who may have moved out during the extended spring break without completing the above cancellation procedure should mail their key, with a note containing their name, UCO ID number, and residence hall assignment, to Housing and Residential Engagement, 100 N. University Drive, Box 111, Edmond, Oklahoma, 73034.
Once the room key is received, adjustments to their accounts will be made. They will not be charged for their housing or dining for the period of April 1- May 8, but will still owe all or part of the costs for any days before April 1, as Spring Break and the extended break were included in the contract.
Charges for room damages will be assessed according to the Student Housing Agreement.
Will students who stay on campus be eligible for an adjustment of housing charges?
Students who remain in campus housing will not be eligible for housing-related waivers or credits. Students receiving university-sponsored financial assistance for housing and dining may not be eligible for a credit and will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.
Will my unused meal swipes and Flex Dollars be refunded?
- Commuter students and residential students who chose to move out will have the remaining value of their meal plan as of April 1 credited to their account. For students with outstanding charges, this credit will result in an account balance reduction. For students who have no balance owed to the university, this will result in a refund.
- Residential students who choose to remain in the residence halls will have their balance of Flex Dollars as of May 8 rolled over to the fall 2020 semester. These Flex Dollars must be used by September 30.
I cannot return to campus due to extenuating circumstances. Can I leave my items?
Yes. Students should email Housing to let us know this may be the case. Students will receive an email with a secondary form to complete. Resident's items may be left in the room until May 3. This date is subject to change as the situation surrounding COVID-19 develops.
Can I have someone else pick up my items?
Yes. Residents should email Housing with their name, UCO ID, room number, and the name of the person picking up the residents items and the expected date and time of pick up. This person will need to show ID and will be escorted to the resident's belongings by a member of the Housing staff.
will Housing move my items?
As the COVID-19 situation evolves, rooms may need to be cleared for consolidation or use in crisis response efforts. Communication will be sent to the resident as part of this process. Rest assured, we will your treat your items with the utmost care if relocation of your belongings is required.
How can I social isolate with roommates?
Social isolation guidelines for roommates are similar to those for families, with the goal to restrict contact of the household with the rest of the local community. In addition to CDC guidelines, Housing has some additional guidelines to help during this period of social distancing:
Create a social distancing roommate agreement
Social distancing will have roommates in the home space more often. Discussing a roommate agreement ahead of time will help avoid conflict later on as nerves may start to fray. Topics for the agreement may include the restriction of guests, cleaning schedules, how to share news about the crisis, study habits, dinner plans, and how the TV may affect the concentration of those studying in the space.
Bring fresh air and sunlight into the space
Cabin fever is inevitable, and what better way to get out of your space than by bringing the outdoors inside! Open your windows to allow sunlight and fresh air into your room. This will help the space feel more open when it feels like the walls might be closing in.
Keep common areas clean
Social distancing should still be applied within the shared space as much as possible. Maintaining a distance of six feet from each other and cleaning items you both use will reduce the spread of viruses in the space.
What if I work in a high-traffic location, like a grocery store?
We are asking that residents who work in high-traffic areas such as grocery stores, convenience stores, and medical facilities contact Housing via email with this information. We may work to relocate you within our halls.
I have a compromised immune system or a pre-existing condition. What should I do?
Please email Housing with this information. We will move you within our halls to a space to best protect you during this crisis.
How do i know if i Have been exposed?
Degrees of exposure may depend on if you have had interactions with people who have a positive diagnosis or are displaying symptoms.
I am experiencing symptoms of COVID-19(fever, cough, shortness of breath). What are my options?
At the onset of symptoms, please text the Housing Care Line at 405-974-3663. We will relocate you to a space identified for isolation until a diagnosis is made. Please follow the instructions sent for how to conduct your move, and restrict your exposure to other resident's and common areas until your move has been finalized.
If you choose to leave campus to isolate, please notify Housing via email.
How long do I have to stay isolated?
You will need to stay in the isolation space until a diagnosis is made. A member of the Housing staff will be in constant communication with those in isolation to remain updated on needs and symptoms.
Can I have meals delivered if I am in isolation?
Yes. Campus Dining Services will coordinate a meal delivery with a member of the Housing staff to your room. The menu can be accessed online at Dine on Campus.