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Coronavirus Updates

CORONAVIRUS FAQS CORONAVIRUS FEEDBACK

By: OCC

June 4, 2020

Ozark Christian College is committed to providing in-person, residential classroom instruction in the fall while maintaining a safe environment for our students, faculty, and staff. Ozark has developed a cautious, compassionate, and comprehensive plan for the wellbeing of our entire community. The COVID-19 Operations Plan, which will be implemented during the fall 2020 semester, adapts our normal campus procedures to accomplish the ongoing work and mission of the college.  

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June 3, 2020

In compliance with the Higher Ed Emergency Relief Fund reporting requirements:

Ozark Christian College signed and returned to the Department the Certification and Agreement. OCC has issued 50 percent of the funds received under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act to provide Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students.

Ozark Christian College received $489,464 from the Department pursuant to the institution’s Certification and Agreement [for] Emergency Financial Aid Grants to Students.

OCC has designated $244,732 of Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act as of the date of submission.

OCC estimates that 440 students are eligible to participate in programs under Section 484 in Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965 and thus eligible to receive Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act.

As of May 24, 306 students have received a total of $158,025 in Emergency Financial Aid Grant to students under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act.

OCC determined which students received Emergency Financial Aid Grants and how much they would receive under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act based on a calculation of need determined through the FAFSA and student enrollment status. 

Any instructions, directions, or guidance provided by the institution to students concerning the Emergency Financial Aid Grants.

Students received an email notification from the Executive Vice President letting them know that we have received funds for Emergency Grants.

Student Financial Services emailed a notice of award to eligible students that included what the funds could be used for as well as instruction for acknowledging that they had experienced expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to coronavirus.

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May 1, 2020

Executive Vice President Damien Spikereit shared three important updates with OCC students regarding our CARES Act grant funds, our plans for on-campus summer events, and our preparations for students' return in the fall. Read the entire memo here.

In light of this memo, OCC will not host any overnight on-campus events this summer, including Creative Arts Academy and Ambassador Sports Camps. (Instead, we will host two sessions of volleyball camps for junior high girls. Find out more at occ.edu/sportscamps.)

Ozark Christian College is committed to providing in-person, residential classroom instruction in the fall while maintaining a safe environment for our students, faculty, and staff. Here are six steps we’re taking to facilitate your safe, on-campus experience next semester:

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April 11, 2020

Of all the hard decisions we've had to make in recent weeks due to the coronavirus outbreak, the decision to postpone this year's Commencement may have been the most difficult. Class of 2020, while we wish we could celebrate your accomplishments in May, we're looking forward to being with you for your 2020 Commencement on Saturday, September 5, at 10 a.m. in the Multi-Purpose Building. Read more at occ.edu/2020commencement.

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March 20, 2020

CLASSES MOVING TO ONLINE FORMAT
Beginning Monday, March 30, all OCC residential classes will move to an online format for the remainder of the spring 2020 semester. (Spring Module 2 online courses will continue as scheduled.) We’re thankful that our Online Learning Department and faculty already have the structure in place to make this change. Your professors will communicate next steps for your courses by no later than Thursday, March 26.

RESIDENCE HALLS 
Starting Saturday, March 28, the OCC residence halls will be open by permission only for students who must stay on campus, including international students, essential OCC student employees, students without online access at home, and students who are unable to return home. If given permission to remain in a residence hall, you may be required to relocate to a different dorm and/or room.

Students checking out of dorms will be scheduled a move-out time/day between March 21-April 3, to avoid large crowds on campus. Your residence director will contact you to arrange your move-out time and date. 


ALL RESIDENTIAL STUDENTS MUST COMPLETE THIS FORM BY 5:00 PM ON FRIDAY, MARCH 27.


ROOM & MEAL REFUND
All dorm students (except those given permission to remain on campus) will receive a $1,000 room and meal refund applied as credit to their school bill. The refund will be reflected on your student account by May 1.

STUDENT EMPLOYMENT
Most student employment positions are suspended for the rest of the semester. We want to encourage students to remain home and under the care of their family and trusted healthcare provider. Your on-campus supervisor will contact you if your position has been deemed essential. 

CAMPUS ACTIVITIES AND EVENTS
All OCC campus events and all events hosted on OCC’s campus have been canceled through Thursday, April 30. This includes the cancellation of public chapel services. The Seth Wilson Library, OCC Mail Center, and the Academic Resource Commons will remain open only to staff and current students. The OCC Bookstore will remain open to the general public. The Multi-Purpose Building/Fitness Center, Chapel Building, Missions Building, and Student Center will be closed. Residence hall lobbies will be open only to students who have received permission to remain in that dorm. Food services will be takeout only from the Dining Hall for students who have been given permission to remain in the dorms. 

ADDITIONAL INFORMATION
Please continue to watch your OCC email and this webpage for the latest information regarding OCC’s response to the outbreak. We are praying for your health and peace in the weeks to come. We are so proud of the way you’re letting this time of uncertainty build your faith and bring glory to God. Now more than ever, you truly are Ambassadors for Christ! 

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March 16, 2020

All OCC events and all events hosted on OCC's campus are canceled through April 30. See occ.edu/events for more.

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March 12, 2020
An update from President Matt Proctor

Dear Ozark Family,

For the last several weeks, OCC’s administrative leadership has been monitoring the coronavirus (COVID-19) spread, and in consultation with local and national health experts as well as other colleges and universities, we have sought to communicate with you appropriate preventative measures. Though there are no known cases in Jasper County, we as leaders care deeply about guarding both your health and the health of the larger regional community, and we are grateful for your patience and flexibility as we respond to this evolving situation. Our goal is to make proactive—but not premature—decisions that will, first, ensure the safety of our college family and second, continue our educational mission in the most effective way possible. 

To accomplish this, we have developed a Coronavirus Response Plan flexible enough to adjust to changing circumstances, and our leadership team is meeting regularly to decide when to implement each next phase in the plan. In our meeting this morning, we decided to extend OCC’s spring break by one week, through Saturday, March 28. This extra week will allow us to monitor the situation and determine the best way for classes to resume on Monday, March 30. Please check your my.occ.edu email and this coronavirus webpage daily over the next two weeks for updates as they are communicated.

If you are a student, what does this mean for you practically?

If you are an employee, what does this mean for you practically?

If you are a faculty member, what does this mean for you practically?

We are making this decision to guard the health and safety of our OCC family, but we also want to exercise our neighborly and civic responsibility to prevent the potential spread of this illness in our larger community. There may be more decisions necessary in the days ahead, so may I close by asking three things of you?

We here at OCC are blessed with a gifted and godly team who are working hard on behalf of our students and employees, and I count it a privilege to work alongside them. We will keep you updated on developments in the days ahead. In the meantime, enjoy your spring break!

Yours in Christ,

Matt Proctor
President 

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March 11, 2020

OCC students and employees:

In the days to come, many of our Ambassadors will be traveling during Spring Break. Due to the continued spread of coronavirus (COVID-19), OCC is requesting the following actions from all students and employees:

  1. Follow the recommended protective measures. Currently, there are no confirmed cases of COVID-19 in Jasper County. However, please follow these precautions from the World Health Organization:
    • Wash your hands often and thoroughly with soap and water or with an alcohol-based hand rub (hand sanitizer).
    • Keep your distance from individuals who are coughing or sneezing.
    • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
    • Cover your nose and mouth with your bent elbow when coughing or sneezing. When using a tissue, dispose of it immediately after use.
    • If you have a cough, fever, or any trouble breathing, seek medical care early. Stay home (isolated) if you’re feeling unwell.
  2. Consider your travel plans. Please use caution when traveling overseas, to large cities, or to affected areas. Consult the CDC’s travel recommendations here, and consider this global map of confirmed cases. As of Wednesday, March 11, OCC has not issued a travel ban to our students or employees.
  3. Stay informed. This is a rapidly evolving situation. Watch for updates via email and on this webpage, and read the most current information about the virus from the CDC and from the Missouri Department of Health.
  4. Contact OCC.

As always, your health and wellbeing are our priority. Thank you for your continued diligence and discernment as this situation continues to evolve.

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March 2, 2020

A word to OCC students, employees, and families about the coronavirus:

Some of you know that one of our spring break trips, a trip to Japan to survey Mustard Seed Network, has been postponed due to the spread of the coronavirus (and because Japan has closed its schools and churches for the time being). Intercultural Studies Director Chris DeWelt is working with Mustard Seed and our students to reschedule the trip for a later date. In the meantime, though we have no direct reason to be concerned for our students and campus regarding this pneumonia-like illness, we do prioritize your health. Here are a few links and resources for the OCC family.

  1. Information: Click here for the most current information about the virus from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, including how COVID-19 (Coronavirus) spreads and simple steps to protect yourself from respiratory viruses.
  2. Travel: Please use caution when traveling overseas or in large cities. If you plan to travel abroad during spring break or in the immediate future, consult the CDC’s travel recommendations here.
  3. Precautions: Hand sanitizer and disinfectant wipes are available in common areas across campus. OCC’s custodial staff has increased their normal daily cleaning procedures to include even more disinfecting of all door handles and frequently touched surfaces. Remember to wash your hands with soap and water, cough and sneeze into your elbow (not your hands), and avoid touching your eyes.
  4. In case of illness: As always, if you develop flu-like symptoms, contact Health Services Coordinator Sara Wood or your preferred health provider. You can also take advantage of OCC’s telemedicine service, DirectConnect. Access DirectConnect on the Health and Wellness section of your Student Life portal tab.

Questions? Contact Health Services Coordinator Sara Wood at [email protected]

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