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COVID-19 Recovery

Northwest entered Phase II: Limited Operations of its recovery phasing plan on Monday, June 8. University buildings reopened to the public Monday, June 22.

Northwest is allowing a limited number of employees to return to campus based on evaluation of their workspaces.

This website provides guidelines and processes for the campus community to follow during the University's recovery phasing. Updates and information will be provided as they become available.

Click here to review information related to Northwest's response to COVID-19 during spring 2020.

FAQs by category


Latest Updates

How many cases of coronavirus have been reported in Nodaway County?  (updated 7/6/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on July 6, 2020
Category: Health and Safety

The first confirmed case in Nodaway County was reported April 2 by the Nodaway County Health Department.

Thirty-one Nodaway County, Missouri, residents have tested positive for COVID-19 to date. Twenty of those individuals are no longer in isolation.  

Cases of coronavirus are confirmed in Missouri and throughout the four-state region.

Where can I be tested for COVID-19?  (updated 7/2/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on July 2, 2020
Category: Health and Safety

The following links provide information about testing sites in the four-state region. If you reside outside the four-state region, check with your local or state health departments for testing information.

How should employees and departments track expenses impacted by COVID-19?  (updated 6/29/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 29, 2020
Category: Employee Information

Should I self-quarantine after travel?  (updated 6/29/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 29, 2020
Category: Travel

Per CDC guidelines, anyone arriving to the U.S. from an international location should quarantine for 14 days. Public health officials also recommend that individuals quarantine after domestic travel.

Individuals who travel should monitor for symptoms and contact their medical provider if symptoms present. To further prevent the spread of coronavirus, individuals should wear face coverings when 6 feet of social distance cannot be maintained.

For CDC information related to domestic travel, visit //www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/index.html.

Will student organizations be allowed to meet in person?  (updated 6/29/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 29, 2020
Category: Campus Activities

Student organizations are expected to implement and maintain Northwest mitigation measures.

While Northwest advises student organizations to continue using Zoom or similar platforms for meetings, groups may choose to meet in-person if they can maintain appropriate social distancing and wear face coverings.

If an employee is diagnosed with COVID-19, or suspects they have it, do I need to let the exposed employees know they are at risk?   (updated 6/26/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 26, 2020
Category: Employee Information

If an employer learns of an employee’s medical condition, such as a diagnosis of the coronavirus, the employer may not share this information. Under the confidentiality provisions of ADA, FMLA, and WC, only those who “need to know” may know about the diagnosis. It may be difficult to demonstrate that, for example, a line manager “needed to know” the employee’s specific diagnosis. Instead, the line manager likely only needs to know the employee will be on a leave of absence and not able to work.

Therefore, employers should keep an employee’s medical condition and diagnosis confidential and private unless there are true health and safety circumstances deemed by the Department of Health. It is always the employee’s right to release and share their own medical condition information.

Employers may educate employees on how they can best protect themselves and what steps employees should take if they were exposed or experience symptoms. The Department of Health will conduct a trace and contact employee who may have been exposed and need to be quarantined. 

Can I ask an employee if he or she has the coronavirus?  (updated 6/26/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 26, 2020
Category: Employee Information

Can I require an employee to go home (or stay home) if he or she is sick?  (updated 6/26/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 26, 2020
Category: Employee Information

Do employees have access to insurance and benefits related to COVID-19?  (updated 6/26/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 26, 2020
Category: Employee Information

Will I be required to wear a face covering when I’m on campus?  (updated 6/24/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 24, 2020
Category: Health and Safety

Face coverings should be worn by all individuals in the presence of others on campus and in public settings where social distancing measures are difficult to maintain (e.g., hallways, common work spaces, meeting rooms, classrooms, etc.). The appropriate use of face coverings is critical to minimize the spread of COVID-19 to others. Wearing a face covering not only protects you; it is us collectively protecting one another.

Is Northwest providing face coverings for students and employees?   (updated 6/24/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 24, 2020
Category: Health and Safety

Northwest is providing Bearcat Logo face coverings to all employees and students.

All students and employees should wear a face covering in areas where social distancing cannot be maintained. Individuals may choose their own face covering, which should be, at a minimum, made of a cloth material, such as a bandana, scarf, neck gaiter or a homemade face covering. Visit //www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/diy-cloth-face-coverings.html to learn more about the importance of face coverings and on how to create your own.

Why is Northwest not offering in-person final exams before Thanksgiving?  (updated 6/23/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 23, 2020
Category: Academics and Coursework

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What will Campus Dining look like?  (updated 6/23/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 23, 2020
Category: Campus Dining

To allow for prevention measures to take place and maintain social distancing, Campus Dining will allow a limited number of students inside Bearcat Commons at one time, and students will be encouraged to leave when they are finished eating. To alleviate possible wait times, Northwest also is considering scheduled lunch times for on-campus residents, among other measures.

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  • All condiments will be single use and handed out by employees.
  • Register shields and contact-less card access will be setup at registers
  • Hand sanitizers will be available throughout all locations
  • Staff members will serve beverages and provide a new cup for refills

What is the difference between “isolation” and “quarantine”?   (updated 6/23/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 23, 2020
Category: Health and Safety

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Quarantine is a term used when someone needs to avoid contact with others because they have been exposed to an infectious person but do not have symptoms. Quarantined individuals should not share a bedroom, bathroom or living space until a public health official or Wellness Services communicates that they are safe to be with others. A public health official or Wellness Services will contact you if you need to be quarantined.

What if I have symptoms of COVID-19 while I am at Northwest?   (updated 6/23/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 23, 2020
Category: Health and Safety

Call Wellness Services and a staff member will screen you over the phone. If testing is needed Wellness Services will administer a test or send you for to a Mosaic medical center for testing. There is a cost for testing.

I heard someone in one of my classes tested positive for COVID-19. What should I do?  (updated 6/23/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 23, 2020
Category: Health and Safety

A public health official or Wellness Services will notify individual contacts who need to quarantine. If you are not contacted, there is no need to take additional precautions.

To be considered a contact, an individual would have spent more than 15 minutes within 6 feet of another individual who tested positive. If both of you were wearing cloth masks, you would be at low risk but still considered a contact. If the person testing positive sat at the front of a classroom and you sat in the back, you would not be considered a contact.

Will my teachers be notified if I test positive?   (updated 6/23/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 23, 2020
Category: Health and Safety

A student testing positive for COVID-19 is responsible for notifying their instructors that they will not return to class until further notice. The student is not required to provide the reason.

Wellness Services will notify the Office of Student Affairs that you are not to attend classes until further notice and will not provide a reason. This is part of Northwest’s normal procedure when students have an infectious disease, are hospitalized, or for other reasons.  

Are classes or classrooms being altered to accommodate social distancing?  (updated 6/23/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 23, 2020
Category: Academics and Coursework

Students and faculty should follow mitigation guidelines, which include wearing face covering and maintaining social distance.

Academic units are preparing their instructional environments to meet instructional outcomes. In some cases, a class may be split with students attending face-to-face in one session and virtually the next. Another class may follow a blended instruction model that is already a common practice at Northwest. In some cases, classes will remain exactly the same with the expectation of mitigation efforts.

Northwest will not add costs to students for mitigation measures, except where personal protective gear may be required above and beyond what is provided.

What happens if I have to miss classes?  (updated 6/23/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 23, 2020
Category: Health and Safety

If you are exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19, you have an obligation to stay away from others. It is important that you communicate with your instructors that you are not feeling well.

Call Wellness Services for screening and further guidance. Wellness Services may communicate to your instructors if you need to be excused from classes. Faculty will offer alternative learning opportunities if you have an approved absence from the Office of Student Affairs and Wellness Services.

What if my roommate tests positive for COVID-19?  (updated 6/23/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 23, 2020
Category: Health and Safety

You will be considered a contact and someone from the public health department or Wellness Services will contact you to provide more information and what the positive test means for you.

One of you will need to move out of the living space. If that is not possible, avoid sharing a bedroom and bathroom. You cannot see the roommate and avoid sharing living quarters and kitchen areas until a public health official or Wellness Services communicates that the roommate is not infectious.

A public health official or Wellness Services will contact you to provide guidance. If you are not contacted, there is no need to take additional precautions.

Do I need to quarantine if my roommate was exposed to a person who tested positive for COVID-19?  (updated 6/23/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 23, 2020
Category: Health and Safety

You do not need to quarantine unless the roommate has symptoms. However, the roommate needs to isolate, and that means they should not have contact with anyone, including all roommates.  

If your roommate develops symptoms, you should quarantine. A public health official or Wellness Services will contact you to provide guidance. If you are not contacted, there is no need to take additional precautions.

Where can I learn more about COVID-19 and recommendations for prevention?  (updated 6/22/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 22, 2020
Category: Health and Safety

The links below are affiliated with state and federal health agencies and provide real-time updates, guidelines and other resources related to the coronavirus outbreak.

Will Northwest reduce fees associated with co-curricular activities if such activities cannot take place due to COVID-19 restrictions?  (updated 6/22/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 22, 2020
Category: Campus Activities

Co-curricular activities will continue to take place at Northwest, though they may be modified to meet COVID-19 mitigation measures.

During the spring 2020 semester, Northwest's Office of Student Involvement hosted a variety of virtual activities during the COVID-19 pandemic as well as guidance to help student organizations meet and continue fulfilling their objectives virtually.

When will fall classes begin?  (updated 6/19/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 19, 2020
Category: Academics and Coursework

Northwest’s fall semester will start on Wednesday, Aug. 19, as previously scheduled.

What modifications are being made to the academic calendar?  (updated 6/19/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 19, 2020
Category: Academics and Coursework

All face-to-face classes will begin meeting Wednesday, Aug. 19, and meet in in person for the last time on Tuesday, Nov. 24, before Northwest dismisses for Thanksgiving break. The week after the Thanksgiving break (Nov. 30 to Dec. 4) will be a preparation week for students.

All final exams will be online during the scheduled final exam week, Dec. 7-11. Exceptions to this schedule include evening classes and classes with resource-intensive instructional environments, which may use the preparation week for final assessment.

Northwest will have no classes, as previously planned, on Labor Day (Monday, Sept. 7) and Walkout Day (Friday, Oct. 9)

Northwest is not implementing changes to any courses already designated as online.

Why do finals have to be online?  (updated 6/19/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 19, 2020
Category: Academics and Coursework

Northwest made the decision to move final exams online to maintain student learning while taking preventative measures to help protect the health and safety of our community in case of a virus outbreak.

Will there be a finals schedule?  (updated 6/19/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 19, 2020
Category: Academics and Coursework

Final exams or summative experiences may be synchronous or asynchronous depending upon the most optimal practice for student assessment in a given course.

All synchronous online final exams and summative educational experiences will occur during the day and time for which they are scheduled per the final exam schedule. Asynchronous final exams and educational experiences must be due by the end of the scheduled final exam day or time.

For a student who may be quarantined, what things will Northwest do to help that student progress academically?  (updated 6/19/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 19, 2020
Category: Academics and Coursework

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How will class attendance be handled during the fall semester?  (updated 6/19/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 19, 2020
Category: Academics and Coursework

Attendance policies are determined by individual academic units. Students who self-report being symptomatic will be accommodated as an excused illness with course delivery.

Will Northwest provide COVID-19 grades or similar accommodations for coursework?  (updated 6/19/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 19, 2020
Category: Academics and Coursework

Northwest will not implement the COVID-19 grade structure during the fall semester. However, accommodations will be made to ensure students whose academic progress may be impacted due to health reasons can continue their studies.   

Will Campus Dining deliver food?  (updated 6/19/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 19, 2020
Category: Campus Dining

To-go containers will be available for students who wish to get food and leave. Northwest is exploring options for mobile ordering and designated pickup areas.

Will campus issue building capacity occupancy limits?  (updated 6/19/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 19, 2020
Category: Health and Safety

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What is Northwest doing to protect its students and employees from COVID-19?  (updated 6/19/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 19, 2020
Category: Health and Safety

Safety is and will continue to be an individual responsibility. At the same time, the University has a responsibility to provide a safe and healthy environment for students, employees and visitors.

All individuals on campus will be expected to adhere to Northwest mitigation measures, including social distancing and wearing a face covering when 6 feet of social distancing cannot be maintained.

Some individuals may need to take additional precautions based on their own unique circumstances.

How will Northwest respect an individual's preference not to wear a face covering while preventing the spread of COVID-19?   (updated 6/19/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 19, 2020
Category: Health and Safety

Wearing cloth face coverings helps slow the spread of the virus and helps prevent people who do not know they have the virus from transmitting it to others. Face coverings provide an extra layer to help prevent respiratory droplets from traveling in the air and onto other people. While they may not protect the wearer from contracting the virus, they protect individuals around the wearer.

In situations where individuals choose not to wear a face covering, supervisors have been directed to have an interactive dialogue with the individual about Northwest’s expectations. Disciplinary action may take place if the individual refuses to comply.

While the mitigation measures and protocols in place at Northwest are focused on protecting our campus community and preventing spread of the disease, it is our shared responsibility as individuals to participate in protecting those around us by following Northwest’s recommended measures and taking responsibility for our personal well-being. By taking individual responsibility and holding each other accountable, we not only do our part to help protect our campus and local community but contribute to a successful fall semester.

What adjustments are being made to restrooms to prevent spread of COVID-19?  (updated 6/19/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 19, 2020
Category: Health and Safety

Northwest custodial services is cleaning restrooms more frequently and providing disinfectant wipes for each restroom and stall.

Foot pedals have been added to restroom doors to help reduce contact with high-touch door surfaces.

Will sanitizers be available to students and employees?  (updated 6/19/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 19, 2020
Category: Health and Safety

Northwest is installing additional wall-mounted hand sanitizers in building locations as well as providing hand pump dispensers for office settings and portable stations for large gatherings.

Disinfectant spray and wipes also are being provided in areas throughout campus to help to employees and students clean touch surfaces after use.

Northwest is intensifying its disinfection efforts across the campus in accordance with guidelines shared by the CDC, the American College Health Association and other state universities.

How will social distancing be maintained on campus?  (updated 6/19/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 19, 2020
Category: Health and Safety

Northwest is implementing a variety of measures to encourage social distancing on the campus that include moving and limiting the access to furniture in classrooms and gathering spaces as well as the installation of Plexiglas barriers in high-traffic workspaces.

While the mitigation measures and protocols in place at Northwest are focused on protecting our campus community and preventing spread of the disease, it is our shared responsibility as individuals to participate in protecting those around us by following Northwest’s recommended measures and taking responsibility for our personal well-being. By taking individual responsibility and holding each other accountable, we not only do our part to help protect our campus and local community but contribute to a successful fall semester.

Will Northwest remove the requirement for first-year students to live on campus to allow for social distancing?  (updated 6/19/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 19, 2020
Category: Residential Life

Northwest is implementing mitigation guidelines to help keep students safe and will continue its requirement that first-year students live on campus.

Students who have medical concerns and may need accommodations for housing should work through the Office of Accessibility and Accommodations

What floors or halls will be used for individuals who need to be quarantined?  (updated 6/19/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 19, 2020
Category: Residential Life

North Complex will be used as isolation and quarantine housing for students who, as determined by a health provider, are exhibiting coronavirus symptoms and cannot return home. Residential Life will make arrangements with those students for food delivery and other accommodations while they are quarantined. 

What will student activities and events on campus look like?  (updated 6/19/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 19, 2020
Category: Campus Activities

Northwest is working with event planners to modify activities and ensure mitigation measures are in place. Some events and activities may need to be canceled if mitigation measures cannot be met and effectively maintained.

What will Bearcat athletics look like?  (updated 6/19/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 19, 2020
Category: Campus Activities

In response to NCAA requirements for maximum and minimum allowable contests and dates for the 2020-2021 season, Bearcat athletics teams are playing reduced schedules. More details are available at //bearcatsports.com/.

Will students and employees be tested for COVID-19?  (updated 6/19/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 19, 2020
Category: Health and Safety

Northwest has organized a Surveillance, Testing and Tracing Team that is planning for scenarios that include suspected and confirmed cases within the student population. This planning is being coordinated with medical professionals at Northwest as well as medical and public health professionals in our community and region.

Will my financial aid change as a result of Northwest revising the fall academic calendar?   (updated 6/19/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 19, 2020
Category: Financial Aid and Billing

Northwest did not change the start and end dates of the fall semester, so financial aid offers will not be adjusted.

Is Northwest offering additional scholarships or financial opportunities due to COVID-19?   (updated 6/19/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 19, 2020
Category: Financial Aid and Billing

Northwest will maintain a level of financial assistance that allows the University to remain an affordable college choice. 

Is Northwest revising the academic calendar for the spring 2021 semester?  (updated 6/19/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 19, 2020
Category: Academics and Coursework

Northwest anticipates starting its spring semester as scheduled on Wednesday, Jan. 13, 2021, and an end date of Friday, May 7, 2021.

What restrictions has Northwest placed on travel?  (updated 6/19/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 19, 2020
Category: Travel

Effective March 12, Northwest has suspended non-essential University-supported travel until further notice (i.e. conferences, trainings, association meetings).

In regard to personal travel, Northwest urges its campus community to be mindful of the health risks, especially in geographic areas with widespread infection 500 Internal Server Error

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Employees who have questions or need guidance about their travel plans should contact the Office of Human Resources at 660.562.1127 or hrwebpg@nwmissouri.edu.

Will students be charged room and board for a full semester?  (updated 6/19/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 19, 2020
Category: Financial Aid and Billing

Students living in residence halls will be charged the semester price because the halls will remain open for the duration of the semester, which ends Dec. 11.

Will students be charged an extra fee for online classes?  (updated 6/19/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 19, 2020
Category: Financial Aid and Billing

Students will not be charged additional fees for Northwest courses that move online as a result of COVID-19 measures.

Will all classes be offered on campus, or will some courses be moved online?  (updated 6/19/20)

Last Updated: 0:00am on June 19, 2020
Category: Academics and Coursework

At this time, Northwest has moved two core courses – General Psychology and Introduction to American Government and Politics – online due to the large capacity of those courses and to make the classroom space available for other courses.  

Northwest continues to evaluate the delivery of its face-to-face courses.

Phase I: Restricted Operations (Monday, May 18 – Sunday, June 7)   (updated 5/7/20)

Last Updated: 11:00am on May 7, 2020
Category: Recovery Phases

  • Employees must be approved to return to on-campus work modes.
  • Facilities remain closed to the public.
  • During this phase, the University is evaluating and installing workspace mitigation measures; testing, tracing and technology capabilities; residential and dining facility options; classroom, studio and lab spaces and alternative learning designs.

Phase II: Limited Operations (closed to the public, Monday, June 8 – Sunday, June 21)  (updated 5/7/20)

Last Updated: 10:55am on May 7, 2020
Category: Recovery Phases

  • Workspace mitigation measures must be in place and Northwest will account for accommodation requests (vulnerable populations).
  • Facilities will remain closed to the public.
  • During this phase, the University is installing workspace mitigation measures; training and evaluating for testing and tracing protocols; selecting fall housing options; implementing dining protocols; selecting and implementing plans for monitoring tools and technology; and evaluating classroom, studio and lab spaces and alternative learning designs.

Phase II: Limited Operations (open to the public, Monday, June 22 – Wednesday, July 15)  (updated 5/7/20)

Last Updated: 10:50am on May 7, 2020
Category: Recovery Phases

  • Workspace mitigation measures must be in place
  • Limited areas will open to the public with restrictions related to social distancing, gathering sizes and single space occupancies.
  • During this phase, the University completes the installation of workspace mitigation measures and is implementing testing and tracing protocols, residential plans, dining protocols, and monitoring tools and technology. The University’s implementation of classroom, lab and studio space design changes will be contingent on a decision regarding instructional models for the fall semester.

Phase III: New Normal (Thursday July 15, until further notice)  (updated 5/7/20)

Last Updated: 10:45am on May 7, 2020
Category: Recovery Phases

  • Operational specific mitigation measures should be complete.
  • All employees should be in on-campus work modes, unless an accommodation is requested.
  • Facilities are open to the public with restrictions related to social distancing, gathering sizes and single space occupancies.