Latest Updates

Please note that information regarding COVID-19 changes frequently. Please refer to the most recently dated information below as our current strategy.

July 20, 2020

A letter from President Rice.

RSU Faculty and Staff,

In a few short weeks, our students will begin returning to campus as we start the fall semester. Each passing day is a mixture of hopeful anticipation and new unexpected challenges. Together, we will face the oncoming uncertainty with care and understanding. Now, more than ever, we need one another as we endeavor to serve our students.

As we return to traditional in-personal instruction, we are implementing new operational procedures to prioritize health and safety. The University’s COVID-19 Task Force through discussions with the Student Government Association, Faculty Senate and Staff Advisory Council has identified a path forward. This includes adapting class schedules, utilizing the continued practice of social distancing, and adopting a mandatory mask policy. Outlined below are key operational updates. 

Mask Policy

Masks are now mandatory on all Rogers State University properties to help stop the spread of COVID-19. Effective July 30th and until further notice, all RSU students, employees, and visitors are required to wear a mask inside University buildings and outdoors on campus when a social distance of at least six feet is not possible. One cloth mask will be provided to each employee and student. This new policy provides exceptions under certain circumstances. Failure to wear a mask will result in appropriate employee conduct actions.

Online Health Screening

All employees returning to campus must complete the COVID-19 screening on MyRSU for assessment and clearance prior to returning to campus or returning to a university-related function or obligation. The form must be completed no later than 24 hours prior to an employee’s return. Employee’s will be notified via email of their screening results.

Positive COVID-19 Case on Campus

In the event that RSU receives confirmation that a student or employee has tested positive for COVID-19, important measures will be promptly taken including quarantine or isolation, contact tracing and facility disinfection.

As is required under federal law, the University is prohibited from disclosing information about student health. In general, if any member of the RSU community tests positive for COVID-19, in keeping with Oklahoma State Department of Health procedures, contact tracers will notify all those who came in contact with the positive individual.

Fall Instructional Calendar

All traditional on-ground classes will move to remote instruction following Thanksgiving break. Students will complete their last week of instruction and final exams remotely. The end of the fall instructional period is December 4. Final exams are scheduled for the week of December 7.

Employee Accommodations

RSU is committed to providing equal employment opportunities for individuals with disabilities. The Office of Human Resources is the designated office responsible for assisting employees with the formal ADA process to request reasonable accommodations. If an individual has an underlying health condition that they believe may make them at a higher risk due to the COVID-19 virus, they should contact the Office of Human Resources.

Personal Responsibility and Accountability

It is expected that every member of the RSU community take personal responsibility in following recommended guidelines, policies and procedures. This includes, but is not limited to:

  • Practicing good hygiene, washing hands regularly and avoiding touching your face.
  • Monitoring personal health and taking temperature daily before arriving at campus.
  • Respecting personal space and practicing social distancing; allowing six feet between others if at all possible.
  • Properly wearing a mask or facial covering over both the nose and mouth.
  • Remaining at home when sick or experiencing COVID-19 symptoms.

As we navigate this transition, we will exercise caution and adapt our operations based upon developing data and the guidance of health authorities. 

My many thanks to each of you as we move forward, together. 

Larry Rice,
President

Update May 28, 2020

A letter from President Rice.

RSU Faculty and Staff,

In service to our students, we will begin opening campus buildings to the public on Monday, June 1. To maximize safety, the return to full, normal operations will be a gradual, phased process. Buildings opening to the public include the Markham Hall welcome center, the Dr. Carolyn Taylor Center bookstore and the main offices of the Bartlesville and Pryor campuses.

Opening campus to the public requires updated guidance on health and safety. Effective immediately and until further notice all RSU employees are required to wear a mask when they are unable to maintain the minimum social distance of six feet from other individuals. Guests and students arriving on campus without a mask will be provided a mask before conducting university business.

Instructor Curtis Sparling has been hard a work producing reusable masks from the RSU Makerspace 3-D printers. A limited number of these masks are still available to RSU employees. Employees interested in the masks should contact the Office of Students Affairs. Disposable paper masks are also available. Employees may request disposable masks through their supervisor or building monitor.

My many thanks to each of you for prioritizing the heath and safety of each other and our students.

Larry Rice,
President

Update April 30, 2020

A message from President Larry Rice.

In response to Governor Stitt’s “Open Up and Recover Safely” plan, Rogers State University will begin the process of returning employees to on-site work at each of our campuses. During the time of restricted campus access and telecommuting our custodial service provider has been diligent in disinfecting campus buildings with products designed to eliminate viruses. Special attention has been given to common areas and surfaces that are high touch points. These more targeted and intensified cleaning efforts will continue on a daily basis.

Resuming Operations

  • Staff and faculty may voluntarily return to work on site beginning Monday, May 11.
  • Staff will return to work on site on Monday, May 18.
  • All RSU campuses will remain closed to the public except by appointment.
  • University services will continue to be conducted through phone or video conferencing.
  • Social distancing practices will remain in place.

Work Attendance

  • Employees should notify their supervisor in advance of Monday, May 11, of their intent to return or telecommute.
  • Supervisors may develop staggered work schedules for employees by time of day, day of the week, or other arrangement as needed.
  • All university employees must follow applicable human resources policies regarding personal, annual, and sick leave.
  • At-risk employees, including those above the age of 65 or those with underlying health conditions, should prioritize their health and safety and discuss arrangements with the Human Resources office.

Health and Safety

  • Employees who are sick, running a fever, or experiencing symptoms should notify their supervisor and not report to work. Employees will need clearance to return to work after an illness.
  • Employees who experience illness after returning to work should notify their supervisor and the Health Center immediately via email or by calling 918-373-5854.
  • Employees who develop a fever, any symptoms of COVID-19 or a positive exposure should be tested for COVID-19.
  • Employees should report positive exposure to COVID-19 immediately to your supervisor and Student Health via email or by calling 918-373-5854. An exposure to a positive case requires 14 days of quarantine and clearance to return to campus.
  • Employees should practice physical distancing while at work. This includes holding meetings via phone call or video conferencing, limiting groups to 10 or less individuals, and maintaining six feet of distance among coworkers when possible.
  • Employees are encouraged to wear a mask when engaging with coworkers.
  • Employees are encouraged to maintain a good hand washing practice and keep their workspaces clean and disinfected.
  • Important information on protecting oneself and others is available on the CDC website.

We will exercise caution and adapt our operations based upon developing data and the guidance of health authorities. I extend my appreciation to each of our dedicated employees for continuing to serve and support our students and one another during the past several weeks. It has been no short order to manage the interrupted routines of daily life. Please know that as we transition our operations and prepare to return to campus, we will continue to act with care and understanding.

Larry Rice,
President

Update April 25, 2020

A letter from President Rice.

This past semester has been a time of great challenge for the members of our Hillcat family and the communities we serve. In the face of uncertainty and significant hardship, the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic has been met with great resilience. This determined spirit will lead us forward, together.

When it’s time for our students to continue their educational goals, we’ll be here for them. Our intention is to return to in-person educational operations on all three campuses, including traditional instruction and residential life this fall. For those unable to join us on campus, we are committed to offering quality online courses and programs

Safety precautions will be at the forefront of every decision we make. This includes adapting class schedules, utilizing the continued practice of social distancing, and extensive cleaning of buildings and residence halls. We will exercise caution and adapt our operations based upon developing data and the guidance of health authorities.

I am proud of how our RSU family has come together to rise to these challenges, and I look forward to the day when we will all be together again, safely, this fall.

Larry Rice,
President

Update April 21, 2020

As Rogers State University continues to prioritize the health and safety of our students, faculty and staff, the following updates are provided to keep you informed.

Virtual Commencement:

All traditional May commencement celebrations for 2020 are postponed. Rogers State University is actively exploring options for a rescheduled, in-person commencement celebration when it is safe to once again host events. This change will not impact the degree completion status of those students who are scheduled to graduate in May.

The108th Rogers State University commencement will take place on Saturday, May 16, 2020. All graduates of the 2020 class, along with their families and friends, will participate in a virtual ceremony online. The event will feature Regent Natalie Shirley as the commencement speaker. Graduating students will be informed of how to prepare and participate through regular updates in their RSU email account.

Student Housing Closed for Summer:

Student housing in University Village A, University Village B, and University Village C will be closed for the summer semester. This includes housing arrangements for summer camps. All students currently living in student housing or storing personal belongings in student housing must complete the move-out process by Friday, May 15, 2020. Move-out procedures will be emailed directly to students from the Residential Life office.

Online Fees Waived for Summer 2020 Courses:

In order to further assist students with the financial hardships created by the COVID-19 crisis, RSU has made the decision to waive online fees for all online summer classes, including summer intersession classes. Students can enroll now for summer classes at rsu.edu/summer

Fall Enrollment Now Open:

Enrollment is open for the Fall 2020 semester, which starts August 17, 2020. The normal selection of courses is expected to be offered in their traditional modes. The schedule is subject to modification as RSU adjusts to shifting student demographics, student preferences, and changes in the status of the pandemic. Current students can schedule a virtual appointment with their advisor at rsu.edu/advising. Prospective students can apply for admission at rsu.edu/admissions.

Update April 7, 2020

Rogers State University is extending the timeframes of telecommuting and event cancelation. In compliance with Governor Stitt’s extended Safer-at-Home executive order and the City of Claremore Stay at Home order, telecommuting will continue through April 30. All university sponsored events and events hosted on university properties are canceled through May 31. Additionally, May intersession courses and summer courses will be delivered online or through alternative instructional methods.

At this time, Academic Affairs is looking into commencement alternatives. Students who are set to graduate this May have been emailed a survey to gather feedback.

As Rogers State University complies with the April 30 extension of telecommuting, benefits-eligible employees in non-essential roles who are unable to telecommute, and cannot be assigned other responsibilities, will continue to be paid. These employees should continue to submit their time as Administrative Leave – COVID-19.

University officials will continue to monitor ongoing developments. Students, faculty and staff will receive regular updates through their RSU email accounts.

Update April 3, 2020

In an effort to promote the safety and well-being of our students, Rogers State University is taking further action to adjust the operations of computer labs, testing centers and library facilities at each of its campuses in Claremore, Bartlesville and Pryor. Effective immediately, and until further notice, these spaces will adhere to the following procedures.

Update March 27, 2020

RSU Students,

This email contains an overview of resources to support you as you complete the remainder of the Spring 2020 semester. We understand that moving to remote instruction following an extended spring break is challenging. Our faculty and staff have been hard at work to make this transition as smooth as possible. Here is what you need to know.

Classes resume on Monday, March 30, 2020:

Important Dates:

  • The last day to drop 16-week courses with a grade of ‘W’ is to Friday, April 17, 2020.
  • The last day to drop 2nd 8-week courses with a grade of ‘W’ is Friday, April 24, 2020.

Hillcat Heroes Fund:

The Rogers State University Foundation, through the support of alumni and supporters, has established the Hillcat Heroes Fund to support students who are experiencing severe financial distress caused by the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic. The criteria for eligibility and application are available in the students tab at MyRSU.

Most University Buildings are Closed:

  • The Library and Computer Labs at each campus have new h​ours of operations.
  • In-person meetings will be limited and must be scheduled in advance.
  • Departments are available by phone and email (contact list below).
  • Many departments are available for video calls through Zoom.

Student Health and Well-being:

You will be hearing from your professors/instructors soon. Faculty and staff are available to assist you during normal business hours and detailed information will be supplied by each department as it becomes available. University officials will be making daily decisions to navigate the moment-by-moment impact of COVID-19 on university operations. You will be notified of ongoing updates through your RSU email account.

Thank you all for your flexibility and your dedication to completing this semester.

Sincerely,
Larry Rice President

Update March 26, 2020

RSU Faculty and Staff,

Earlier this week Governor Stitt issued a state-wide “Safer-at-Home” executive order to address the spread of COVID-19 in Oklahoma. Effective immediately Rogers State University will implement the following to comply with the order.

The University will begin reducing operations to essential services. Reduced services will remain in effect until at least April 15, 2020. Because this situation changes rapidly, the University needs may change.

All employees who can perform services under the University’s telecommuting policy should continue to perform their duties. Supervisors can direct employees to perform duties outside of employees’ normal responsibilities that are related to their work and can be done remotely, including training or cross-training for other departmental duties.

All employees who perform in-person essential services are expected to continue working on campus and should check with their supervisors about their schedule. Employees performing essential services and identified in the Executive Order as “vulnerable individuals” should take additional precautions and telecommute to the extent possible. Those individuals over the age of 65 and anyone with a serious underlying medical condition are considered “vulnerable individuals.”

Essential services are functions and duties that should be done on campus and should not be deferred during a public health emergency. These duties should be performed continuously or resumed quickly following a disruption.

Benefits-eligible employees in non-essential roles who are unable to telecommute, and cannot be assigned other responsibilities, will continue to be paid. They should contact their supervisor and submit their time as Administrative Leave – COVID-19. Employees who are not benefits-eligible are not eligible for Administrative Leave.

If an employee has unscheduled or scheduled annual and/or personal leave during this event, the time should not be changed to Administrative Leave. The employee should continue to report their time as Paid Leave.

Again, these measures will remain in effect until at least April 15, 2020.

This situation is evolving and the University’s response may change at any time. All employees will be updated through their RSU email account as university officials receive continued clarification and direction.

Together, we will navigate these challenging circumstances. Please know that we will continue to act in the best interest of our students, faculty, and staff during these difficult times.

Larry Rice
President

Update March 21, 2020

RSU Community,

As we resume operations on Monday, we will seek to move forward with empathy and flexibility. I recognize that everyone of us is working through unforeseen challenges. Together, we will support one another as we navigate the days ahead through these unprecedented times.

Today, new decisions have been made to move all course instruction online, and measures for modified work plans and special leave provisions have been put into effect.

Electronic Instruction for the Remainder of the Semester:

  • Effective Monday, March 30, and for the remainder of the Spring 2020 semester Rogers State University will deliver all courses electronically. This decision supports social distancing efforts by reducing the number of people at each campus.
  • Students will remain on spring break the week of March 23-27. Electronic instruction will begin on Monday, March 30.
  • Students are strongly encouraged to remain off campus, if possible, and are instructed to conduct university business remotely by phone or email.

Telecommuting and Flex Schedules:

  • Normal operations will resume at all RSU campuses on Monday, March 23, at 8 a.m.
  • To support the university-wide efforts of social distancing, supervisors will enact work plan modifications. These modifications will keep employees distanced by a minimum of six feet and will limit office spaces to fewer than 10 individuals per work area.
  • The work plan modifications could necessitate shift work, flex schedules and telecommuting options when appropriate by job function. These options must be implemented by supervisors and receive administrative review. Employees will receive clear instruction and performance expectations from their supervisors.
  • Student workers and part-time university employees should anticipate modified assignments due to this change in operations. They will receive additional communication from their supervisor.

New Leave Provisions:

  • A new temporary leave category is available for to RSU Employees unable to work or telecommute for the following reasons:
    • You are caring for a dependent whose school or place of care is closed, or whose childcare provider is unavailable, due to COVID-19 precautions;
    • You are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 and are seeking a medical diagnosis; or
    • You are subject to a federal, state, or local quarantine or isolation order related to COVID-19 or caring for an individual subject to the same conditions.
  • Employees may use up to 80 hours of paid leave during the next two weeks (March 23 – April 5, 2020). This leave must be receive administrative approval in advance and will be recorded as Special Leave.

Screenings in Process:

  • Individuals returning from out-of-state or international travel may not return to campus or attend off-campus university-sponsored activities or events until they complete a screening and possible self quarantine.
  • If your screening is still in process, you may not return to campus until your screening has been approved.

Cancellation of University-sponsored Events:

  • Effective immediately all university-sponsored events are canceled through the end of the Spring 2020 semester ending Friday, May 8, 2020.
  • This does not include regular business operations that require fewer than 10 participants.
  • Commencement remains postponed at this time.

Limited Campus Access:

  • All RSU campuses will reopen for students, faculty and staff as scheduled on Monday, March 23.
  • Students are required to make an appointment directly with the faculty member, department, or service area to ensure access and efficiency.
  • All existing and approved outside vendors and contractors may continue regular business operations.
  • Exterior doors to all buildings will remain locked throughout the day. Signs will be posted on each door with information on how to arrange a meeting.
  • Guests wishing to visit one of our campuses for any reason must call the campus prior to the visit and follow all issued guidelines.
  • Unapproved guests will be asked to leave campus immediately.

Student Housing:

  • New precautions are under development to minimize the risk of exposure to students living in student housing. Students should monitor their RSU email for upcoming details.
  • Students are strongly encouraged to remain off campus if possible.

As we transition our operations and prepare to return to campus I am proud of how everyone in our campus community is coming together to rise to this challenge. Please know that we will continue to act in the best interest of our students, faculty, and staff during these difficult times.

Sincerely,

Larry Rice
President

Update March 20, 2020

RSU Community,

I am pleased to report that there are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 at any of our campuses. As we navigate the moment-to-moment impact of COVID-19 on university operations, the safety and well-being of our students, faculty, staff and community continue to be our highest priority.

Today, decisions have been made to further enact social distancing to minimize the risk of exposure and spread of the virus. This includes an update for individuals who have traveled out of state.

Out of an abundance of caution to provide additional protection to our university family and frontline employees, we have adopted more stringent travel guidelines from OU Health Sciences Center.

Domestic and International Travel:

  • Individuals returning from domestic or international travel may not return to campus or attend off-campus university-sponsored activities or events until they complete a screening and possible self-quarantine period.
  • Domestic travel includes any travel outside the State of Oklahoma.
  • If you are returning from domestic or international travel, notify your supervisor and complete the online screening form.

Screening Form Instructions:

  • Login to my.rsu.edu; Select “COVID-19” from the top menu bar; Click the link: “Click here to Submit COVID-19 Screening Form”
  • All self-reporting and online screening forms must be submitted by Sunday, March 22 at noon.
  • You must wait for approval before returning to campus. If directed by the medical professional conducting your screening, you may be subject to a self-quarantine period.

Resuming Operations:

  • At this time all RSU campuses will reopen on Monday, March 23 at 8 a.m. and resume normal operations.
  • All university employees will return to work on Monday March 23 and must follow applicable human resources policies regarding personal, annual, and sick leave.
  • If you are sick, running a fever or experiencing symptoms notify your supervisor and do not report to work.
  • Faculty will use the week of March 23-27 to prepare for remote instruction. Remote instruction will begin Monday, March 30 and continue for at least one week.
  • Student employees may return to work on Monday, March 23. Student’s must contact their supervisor in advance if they elect to not return to work at this time.

Student Housing and Campus Visitors:

  • The extension of spring break for students will continue the week of March 23-27.
  • Students are strongly encouraged to remain off campus if possible. Please conduct university business remotely by phone or email.
  • Residential buildings are restricted to occupants only. All non-resident students and outside visitors are not allowed in any university housing or residential life buildings.
  • Students dependent upon university housing and services will be accommodated.

Common Spaces and Lounges:

  • Effective immediately and until further notice, university common spaces are closed.
  • This includes, but is not limited to student lounges, faculty lounges, group study rooms, and recreational rooms.

Library and Computer Labs:

  • Effective immediately and until further notice, university computer labs will be restricted. On the Claremore campus, computer labs in the Stratton Taylor Library, Residential Life Clubhouse, and Dr. CarolynTaylor Center will remain open with a reduction of available workstations. Computer labs on the Bartlesville and Pryor campuses will remain open with extended hours.

Commencement and Graduation Ceremonies :

  • Out of an abundance of caution, commencement and all graduation ceremonies are postponed. We are actively exploring ways we can honor our graduates and their achievements at an appropriate time.

The university encourages students and employees to exercise caution during these difficult times. Should circumstances prohibit attendance, employees should notify their supervisors about their absence in advance. Navigating this developing situation is an unprecedented challenge. We are resolved to move forward into the coming days with careful discernment. I extend my appreciation to our students, faculty, and staff for your patience and understanding.

Sincerely,

Larry Rice
President

Update March 13, 2020

Effective immediately and until further notice all university-related events of any size will be canceled or postponed through Friday, April 3 at midnight. This includes, but is not limited to, athletic events, recruitment events, tours, student programs, reunions, performances, conferences, social events and outside events hosted on university property.

Listed below are further clarifications and information regarding university actions as it stands today on Friday, March 13, 2020. Updates will be provided, as needed, as university officials monitor the situation.

Work Attendance:

  • The university will resume operation on Monday, March 23. All university employees will return to work and must follow applicable human resources policies regarding personal, annual, and sick leave.
  • Student employees may return to work on Monday, March 23. Student’s must contact their supervisor in advance if they elect to not return to work at this time.

International Travel:

  • Individuals returning from travel to, or through, a location outside the U.S. may not return to campus or attend off-campus university-sponsored activities or events until they complete a screening and possible self quarantine.
  • If you are returning from international travel you must notify the university. Students should call the office of Student Affairs and employees should call the Human Resources office. You will receive instruction on immediate next steps.
  • It is highly likely that individuals returning from international travel will be required to self quarantine. University employees should expect that the self quarantine period will follow applicable human resources policies regarding personal, annual, and sick leave.

Student Housing and Services:

  • Students are strongly encouraged to remain off campus if possible. Students dependent upon university housing and services will be accommodated. Normal spring break services will not be interrupted. Adjustments to services beginning Monday, March 23 will be communicated in advance.

Student Participation in Remote Instruction:

  • All students will access classes through electronic delivery beginning on Monday, March 30 and continuing for a minimum of one week. Students must comply with the course syllabus and should assume that all due dates and course requirements still apply. Should the transition to remote instruction impact a student’s ability to complete assignments, the student must contact faculty as soon as possible to make arrangements.

University officials will continue to monitor ongoing developments. Students, faculty and staff will receive regular updates through their RSU email accounts.

March 12, 2020

Rogers State University has implemented a series of action plans intended to minimize the effects of the COVID-19 (novel coronavirus) pandemic at its campuses in Claremore, Pryor and Bartlesville. This includes the implementation of social distancing and remote instruction. At this time there are no confirmed cases of the virus in the RSU community.

Extension of Spring Break and Remote Instruction:

  • The university will extend spring break by one week, March 23-27, for students only.
  • Faculty, staff and student employees will report to work on Monday, March 23.
  • Faculty, staff and student employees will use the week of March 23-27 to prepare for remote instruction.
  • Remote instruction will begin the week of Monday, March 30 and will continue for a minimum of one week.
  • At this time, university operations will continue as usual on Monday, March 23 with faculty and staff reporting to work. Students are strongly encouraged to remain off campus. Students dependent upon university housing and services will be accommodated. All students will access instruction remotely beginning Monday, March 30.

Domestic Air Travel and International Travel:

  • Effective immediately, all university-sponsored travel, out-of-state or international, is suspended until further notice. The university advises all individuals to exercise caution during personal travel and to stay informed by regularly checking the CDC website.
  • Individuals returning from travel to, or through, a location outside the U.S. may not return to campus or attend off-campus university-sponsored activities or events until they complete a screening and possible self quarantine.

University officials will continue to monitor ongoing developments. Students, faculty and staff will receive regular updates through their RSU email accounts.

Update March 3, 2020

The university is monitoring the emergence of Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19). At this time there are no confirmed cases of the coronavirus in the state of Oklahoma. If there is a change in the situation, you will be alerted through official university channels.

In addition to the Environmental Health and Safety Committee, an internal working group has assembled to focus on developing plans in the event that the spread of this virus impacts university operations. The best response to any infectious virus is prevention. All members of our campus community are encouraged to follow best preventive practices.

  • Wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, and do so frequently.
  • Use alcohol-based hand sanitizers (60% alcohol or above) when hand-washing is unavailable.
  • Cover coughs and sneezes with a tissue (discard used tissue), or cough into your elbow.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Avoid close contact with those who are sick
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Clean frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Get this year’s influenza vaccine.

Additional information is available through the Center for Disease Control and the Oklahoma State Department of Health. University officials will continue to monitor ongoing developments. Students, faculty and staff will receive regular updates through their RSU email accounts.