Dr. Claire Gordon receives Phi Theta Kappa award

Dr. Claire GordonClaire Gordon, Ph.D., professor of communication and advisor to the LLCC chapter of Phi Theta Kappa (PTK) Honor Society, was honored with the Outstanding Advisor award at the annual PTK Illinois Regional Conference and Honors Institute in a virtual ceremony May 30.

In addition, two LLCC students were installed as officers for the Illinois Region. Hyler Pence will serve as president, the first time a member of the LLCC chapter has achieved this honor. He currently serves as LLCC chapter public relations officer. Julia Kienzler will serve as central vice president. She currently serves as LLCC chapter president.

“Hyler and Julia are both outstanding students, and I know they will make LLCC proud as they serve the Phi Theta Kappa Illinois Region over the next year,” said Dr. Gordon.

Cheyenne Kesselring, a recent LLCC graduate and former chapter public relations officer, received an award for Outstanding Chapter Officer.

Phi Theta Kappa is the nation’s leading honor society for students attending community colleges. It recognizes academic success and provides opportunities for members to develop professional and leadership skills, earn scholarships and explore career paths.

CDC advice: What to do if you are sick

In addition to sharing tips on how to help protect yourself and others from COVID-19, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention provides information on what to do if you are sick. Symptoms of COVID-19 include fever and a cough. If you are sick with COVID-19 or think you might have COVID-19, do not leave your home except to get medical care. Do not visit public areas. Most people have mild illness and are able to recover at home. If you think you may have been exposed to COVID-19, contact your healthcare provider.

  • Keep track of your symptoms.
  • If you have an emergency warning sign (including trouble breathing), get emergency medical care immediately.

The CDC also offers a self-checker to help you make decisions and seek appropriate medical care.

Welcome Chris Russell

Chris RussellChris Russell joined the college Monday as chief of police June 1. He recently retired as a lieutenant from the Springfield Police Department after 25 years of service. He is a graduate of LLCC, Illinois State University and Northwestern University’s School of Police Staff and Command. He can be reached at christopher.russell@llcc.edu. Welcome, Chief Russell!

Our sympathy to Neci Faine

We extend our condolences to Neci Faine, duplication and mail center technician, on the recent passing of her brother, Robert Earl Fain Sr., on May 29. Visitation will be held at Revelations Worship Center in Springfield on Saturday, June 6 from 11 a.m.-1 p.m., and a service will be held from 1-2 p.m. Private interment will follow. Read the obituary.

CDC advice: Wash your hands often

Another one of the steps the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends to help protect yourself and others from COVID-19 is to wash your hands often.

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after you have been in a public place or after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.

The CDC website provides regular updates and helpful information on COVID-19. View more tips on protecting yourself and others.

CDC advice: Avoid close contact

One of the steps the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends to help protect yourself and others from COVID-19 is to avoid close contact.

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick, even inside your home. If possible, maintain six feet between the person who is sick and other household members.
  • Put distance between yourself and other people outside of your home.
    • Remember that some people without symptoms may be able to spread virus.
    • Stay at least six feet (about two arms’ length) from other people.
    • Do not gather in groups.
    • Stay out of crowded places and avoid mass gatherings.
    • Keeping distance from others is especially important for people who are at higher risk of getting very sick.

The CDC website provides regular updates and helpful information on COVID-19. View more tips on protecting yourself and others.

CDC tips on protecting yourself and others from COVID-19

Your well-being during these very challenging times is of the utmost importance. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website provides regular updates and helpful information on COVID-19. View tips on protecting yourself and others, including:

  • Washing your hands often
  • Avoiding close contact
  • Covering your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover when around others
  • Covering coughs and sneezes
  • Cleaning and disinfecting
  • Monitoring your health

Return to on-campus operations and protocols

With our region entering “Phase 3” in the Restore Illinois plan effective May 28, 2020, LLCC will begin to gradually move back toward on-campus operations for some employees and students beginning Monday, June 1. This gradual approach to re-opening our campuses will prioritize the safety and well being of our employees and students while beginning to restore some campus operations. The Cabinet has been busy developing return to work protocols and identifying what functions and employees will continue to operate remotely and those who will be brought back for on-campus operations. Your supervisor will be in contact with you regarding your work schedule for the week beginning June 1. Some employees will continue to operate remotely, some will move back on campus, and others will alternate a few days per week.

Beginning June 1, those students needing to complete labs or workforce training programs will be allowed to complete their coursework. For those employees returning to their work location, operations will be different than what we are accustomed to.  The following protocols must be adhered to for all employees working on campus beginning Monday, June 1:

Requirement #1 – Social Distancing

Social distancing is a simple yet very effective mechanism to prevent potential infection, that relies on simple distance to avoid infection.

In practice, this means:

  • Staying 6 feet away from others as a normal practice
  • Avoiding entering and exiting buildings (i.e. leaving for the day) in groups
  • Eliminating contact with others, such as handshakes or embracing co-workers, visitors or friends
  • Avoiding touching surfaces touched by others, to the extent feasible
  • Avoiding anyone who appears to be sick, or who is coughing or sneezing

Any meetings of greater than 3 people must be conducted virtually. If a brief gathering is required of more than 3 people (i.e. shift assignment meetings), it must be conducted in a location allowing for social distancing and will not interfere with other activities and person traffic. Office and lab/classroom spaces should be arranged or scheduled to ensure separation of employees and students using proper social distancing. Departments with shared workspaces are encouraged to develop work schedules whereby half of the staff works from home and half the staff works on campus, to the extent possible or staggered work schedules to reduce exposure.

Requirement #2 – Use of Face Masks/Covering

The use of a face mask or covering is REQUIRED at all times for BOTH EMPLOYEES AND STUDENTS when an interaction could occur with another individual. For employees and students who come into frequent contact with the public and social distancing is difficult to maintain, face masks must be worn. Face masks also must be worn by any employee or student who must work with others in confined spaces or may come into contact with contaminated surfaces.

If any employee must leave their workspace (i.e. use the bathroom, go to the mailroom, etc.), a face mask must be worn. Basically, the only time a face mask is not required is when you are sitting in an isolated office without anyone else present.

The college will provide a face mask or covering for employees if needed. Students should wear their own face mask or covering when on campus.

Requirement #3 – Employee and Student Health

Employees reporting on-campus will be required to submit DAILY forms to their supervisor before coming to work attesting to their current health (no fever, feeling well, etc.). The college is in the process of implementing an online application employees will use to verify their daily health within but that will not be in place by June 1, so in the interim a series of questions is being developed by Human Resources that must be answered and emailed to your supervisor daily. Employees or students exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19, including but not limited to, fever, coughing and shortness of breath must stay home and report such symptoms to their supervisor. Employees and students are encouraged to monitor their temperatures daily prior to coming to work/class. Knowingly coming to work with these symptoms, putting your co-workers at risk, may result in disciplinary action, up to and including termination. 

Requirement #4 – Limited Building Access and Exit ways for Open Buildings

Entrances and exits on each building will be limited based on building size and number of entry/exit ways. Buildings designated to be “open” will have a primary entrance and a separate exit(s) identified. For example, the entrance for both Menard Hall and Sangamon Hall will be through A. Lincoln Commons. This will be the only entrance for these two buildings.  Staff and students exiting the building must use the other doors throughout the two buildings to exit. For the Workforce Center, the entrance will be the main entrance into the building and the designated exit is the side doors at the end of the hallway on the side of the building.

In addition to designated entrances and exits, in order to minimize contact we have signage marked throughout identifying a direction in each hallway for foot traffic. I understand that this may mean that you may not be able to take the most direct route to wherever you may be going but we ask that you comply with these directional markings to minimize contact with others. In spaces where one-way directional foot traffic is not feasible, signage has been established on each side of the hallway so one side goes in one direction and the other side the opposite direction to maintain as much distance as possible.

Requirement #5 – Attendance Logs

A daily attendance log of all workers, students, and visitors (if any) must be kept and retained for at least four weeks. The log must include the name, phone number, and email address of all workers and visitors.  These logs must be kept and maintained in each work area, lab and classroom that is open. Employees or students are not allowed to bring their children or other guests/family members on to campus during this time. We understand child care may be a challenge for some employees during this time, but this is an element that we simply cannot control.

We understand these protocols are not ideal; however, they represent the new reality during this time. Please understand that we are putting these measures in place to prioritize the well being of our employees and students, while gradually returning to on campus operations. Please be flexible because as we get into this, protocols may have to be added or altered. This is new for all of us, but if we all comply, we will have a successful transition back to campus. Thank you all for everything you have done to help LLCC endure one of the most unexpected and challenging events any of us could imagine. Our employees really pulled together to make the most out of a really tough situation. It will be nice to see some limited activity back on our campuses soon!

Persistence and Completion Taskforce feedback session today

The Persistence and Completion Taskforce is conducting feedback sessions to improve the intervention for students who are on academic probation and are registering later. Please email Chris.Barry@llcc.edu to let us know if you will be attending the Microsoft Teams session today, May 21, from 3-3:45 p.m. If you would like to provide feedback but don’t have time to attend this session, please submit your feedback by going to socrative.com and entering the room BARRY5746.