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WSU Pullman develops facilities plan for Fall 2020

WSU Pullman has developed a facilities use plan for the fall semester that covers teaching and research practices as well as how office and gathering spaces will function in a reduced capacity.

Each campus is developing its own plan for the fall semester, though core principles will be consistent across the system. These plans support WSU’s move to distance learning for the Fall 2020 semester in response to the public health risks posed by COVID-19.

“Faculty and staff are encouraged to continue to work from home and may use their campus work space only when working from home is not feasible,” Provost Elizabeth Chilton wrote in an email to WSU Pullman faculty and staff.

Chilton also said anyone needing to be on campus should work with their supervisor on an access plan. Anyone coming to the Pullman campus is required to submit a daily attestation through the university’s attestation website.

Many facilities, will be closed to the public or in “unoccupied” mode this fall. That includes the library buildings, though its services will be available digitally. Instructions on how to use these services can be found online. Research buildings will be closed to the public and require Cougar Card permissions or keys to access.

Occupied facilities will be kept between 65°F and 78°F with increased airflow in classrooms and group spaces, where feasible. Facilities in “unoccupied” mode will be in the same energy set-point range but will have minimal air flow.  Occupancy status will be modified to accommodate college courses and functions at the request of the Provost’s Office.

The Spark and Smith Center for Undergraduate Education’s general university classrooms will be used for on-campus instruction when needed. All but a very select few courses will be taught at a distance this semester. For labs that require equipment not available in the space or Smith Center, colleges should work to consolidate labs to optimize technology and facilities support.

Staff are asked to continue working from home as much as possible. Those who must work in an office are asked to limit their time on campus, maintain physical distancing and wear a mask unless alone in their office. Working in an office space requires approval of a college’s Return to Work Plan. Additional “hotel” spaces will also be available inside The Spark and other essential buildings.

Research labs are required to have approved Return to Research plans. General guidance on reopening research facilities can be found online, as can guidance on conducting human subject research.

Departments will not receive mail and instead must pick it up at Cougar Publications. U-Stores and Central Receiving will be given building keys or Cougar Card permissions to allow access. Outside vendor deliveries must be scheduled and arranged by departments.

Available student gathering spaces will be limited to the Compton Union Building, the Smith Center, The Spark and University Recreation sites like the Chinook and Student Recreation Center. Colleges can also request approval to open up spaces for student use, with information on how to do so available on the WSU Risk Management website.

As the COVID 19 situation changes and informs new direction from the Governor’s Office, plans will adjust accordingly.

If you have questions or concerns, please contact Craig Cole at, or 335-9035.  Cole coordinates with the Provost’s Office, EH&S, Academic Outreach & Innovation and other campus resources. Facilities Services is also available to answer questions.