CAMPUS UPDATE: SEPTEMBER 4, 2020

In keeping with our ongoing commitment to keep our College Community safe, we have continued to look for ways to refine our strategies to minimize exposure to COVID-19.  One strategy we’ve employed is to limit the number of people on campus while continuing to support essential on-campus functions to serve our students. 

To further help support this effort, we will adopt new operating hours beginning next week on September 8, 2020, and continue these hours until further notice.

Monday-Thursday, 8 a.m.­–6 p.m.
Friday, 8 a.m.–noon

These hours do not impact or change any classes or instruction that occur outside of our operating hours. 

Essential functions and services will continue to be staffed in-person on Fridays during the new operating hours. All other staff will be teleworking when possible during Friday operating hours.

Current student support and services being offered in-person will continue to be available on campuses during the new Friday operating hours. This includes the bookstore, business office, library, and student affairs offices (admissions, financial aid, advising, counseling, and records and registration).

Please note that student affairs offices are available by appointment only at the Kimbrell campus on Fridays. The Morris Library on the Dallas campus will be open 7:30 a.m.–9 p.m. Monday-Thursday, 7:30 a.m.–noon on Friday, and 9 a.m.–1 p.m. on Saturdays, except for College breaks and holidays. Lincoln Campus Library is open 8 a.m.–8 p.m. Monday–Thursday and 8 a.m.–noon on Friday. The Kimbrell Campus Library follows the new College operating hours Monday–Friday.

We thank you all for continuing to follow the safety guidelines in our GC Safe Plan and for helping to keep our campus community safe!


CAMPUS UPDATE: AUGUST 18, 2020

Dear Gaston College Community:

As we prepare to begin the Fall 2020 semester this week, our highest priority remains the health, safety, and well-being of everyone within our College Community. As noted in my July 28, 2020, email, we are ready to implement Plan A of the GC Safe Plan beginning this Thursday, August 20, 2020. If you have not reviewed the GC Safe Plan, please do so at gaston.edu/gcsafe.

The GC Safe Plan is designed to prevent or slow the spread of COVID-19. Although there are many components to the GC Safe Plan, five specific aspects are essential to our success:

  1. Stay home when sick:  If you are sick, stay at home, but be sure to communicate with your supervisor or instructor about your status.
  2. Adherence: It is imperative that all of us in the College Community adhere to the safety protocols set forth in the GC Safe Plan while on campus. Adherence is a specific expectation spelled out in the GC Safe Plan.
  3. Practice 3Ws: In addition to other safety protocols, it is essential that all of us practice the 3Ws while on campus. Wear a face covering. Wait at least 6-feet away from others (social distancing). Wash and/or sanitize hands often.
  4. CampusClear: All of us need to do a quick health screen before coming to campus using the CampusClear App. The App is available through your mobile device’s App store, or a link to the web version can be found on the GC Safe web page. More information on CampusClear is available in the GC Safe Plan.
  5. Temperature Screening: Before entering a campus building, be prepared to have your temperature taken. Temperature screeners will be stationed at designated building entrances to assist with the process. For some buildings, special arrangements will be made for temperature screening. (If you are having trouble opening the maps, we recommend using Chrome or Firefox as your browser.)

Thank you in advance for joining our collective and collaborative effort to keep our College Community safe. We recognize that some of these safety protocols may present certain challenges, but I am confident that with patience, understanding, and commitment by all, we can keep our campus safe, because Together, WE Create Success!

Best regards,

Dr. John Hauser


CAMPUS UPDATE: JULY 28, 2020

Dear Gaston College Community:

I hope this finds you and your family safe and well as we continue our collective efforts in response to COVID-19. The past few months have presented challenges for all of us, but together we have found ways to overcome those challenges and move our college forward.  The expression GC Proud could not be more fitting to describe our collaborative spirit and response. 

As we prepare for the Fall 2020 semester, our highest priority remains the health, safety, and well-being of everyone within our College Community.  Based on current information and research, we have developed an updated COVID-19 web page called GC Safe, which includes a guide for campus safety and health during COVID-19.  This guide, or GC Safe Plan, includes three implementation plans–Plan A, Plan B, and Plan C–that are designed to respond to current risks and relative changes associated with the potential spread of COVID-19.  

Plan A will be our initial implementation plan and will be effective August 20, 2020, the start of the fall 2020 academic year. Please take a few minutes to review the GC Safe web page and GC Safe plan, which can be found at www.gaston.edu/gcsafe.

As we implement Plan A of the GC Safe plan, we will continue to evaluate recommendations from public health and other officials and remain flexible to make any changes deemed necessary. 

Please join me in working together as we implement our GC Safe plan. 

It will take all of us doing our part to keep our campuses safe, and Together, WE Create Success!

Best regards,

Dr. John Hauser


CAMPUS UPDATE: JUNE 26, 2020

On Wednesday, June 24, 2020, Governor Cooper announced that because of the continued upward trends in COVID-19 related metrics, along with concern for public health and hospital capacity, North Carolina would extend the current Safer-at-Home Phase Two order until at least Friday, July 17, 2020.

This means that mass gatherings will continue to be limited to no more than 10 people indoors and 25 outdoors. Teleworking will continue to be encouraged whenever possible and facilities such as spas, gyms, and fitness studios will remain closed.

This extension also included a mandate for face coverings in many public settings. Gaston College will follow this new recommendation by requiring that face coverings be worn on all campuses where physical or social distancing of six feet is not possible unless a reasonable accommodation can be made due to a medical condition that prevents the wearing of a face covering.

If you are a student at Gaston College and need a face covering, please contact your instructor. If you are a faculty or staff member of Gaston College and need a face covering, please contact your supervisor.

As a reminder to instructors and supervisors, face coverings are available for students by contacting Ms. Renita Johnson in Student Affairs, and for employees by contacting Ms. Carol Denton in HR.

Fall 2020 Advising
In light of current guidelines and recommendations related to COVID-19, the Counseling and Advising Center and the Transfer Advising Center will offer virtual advising appointments in three different formats: phone, e-mail, and video conferencing. Appointments are scheduled from the hours of 8:15 a.m. to 5:15 p.m. Monday-Thursday. Visit the student information page on our COVID-19 website for instructions on how to request an advising appointment.

CARES Act
A text message was sent on Thursday, June 25 to Spring 2020 students that may be eligible to receive CARES Act funds. Eligible students will receive up to $650. A link to the application to determine eligibility and qualifying amount was included in the text. Contact the Financial Aid Office at financialaid@gaston.edu if you have any questions about the CARES Act.

Grant funds have been provided by the U.S. Department of Education Award Number P425E200519100. 100 percent of the cost of this program is financed with federal funds. Gaston College has received $1,260,424 in federal funds to support this program.  Zero percent of non-federal dollars have been used to finance this program.

 


CAMPUS UPDATE: JUNE 12, 2020

As we continue to see more faculty, staff, and students returning to campus we request that everyone continue to observe safe practices to minimize the spread of COVID-19. As a reminder:

  • Avoid close contact and practice social distancing
  • Wash your hands often or use hand sanitizer
  • Wear a cloth face covering

Review the College’s COVID-19 Risk Mitigation and Safety Protocols for additional safety practices.

Fall 2020 Semester Registration
To maintain a safe learning environment for students and faculty during the Covid-19 pandemic, we will delay fall 2020 registration for one week to allow time to adjust the fall 2020 schedule of courses to meet social distancing requirements and other risk mitigation strategies. Registration for returning students will now begin on Tuesday, June 23, 2020. An email was sent to all returning students regarding this registration date change.

Continuing Education
Continuing Education and Economic and Workforce Development are planning to resume face-to-face classes that can meet new safety guidelines starting the week of June 22, 2020. Class registration will be accessible for enrollment on Web Advisor as classes become available. Individuals who expressed interest in class openings since the suspension of face-to-face classes will be contacted by email or phone to relay information about upcoming class offerings. If you have any questions, please email ConEd@gaston.edu.

Adult High School Student Success classes continue to be offered online for students interested in the Adult High School diploma program. Contact hissom.debra@gaston.edu for further information.

CARES Act
For information and frequently asked questions about the CARES Act Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds (HEERF), please visit our CARES Act page. Contact the Financial Aid Office at financialaid@gaston.edu if you have any questions about the CARES Act.

Grant funds have been provided by the U.S. Department of Education Award Number P425E200519100. 100 percent of the cost of this program is financed with federal funds. Gaston College has received $1,260,424 in federal funds to support this program.  Zero percent of non-federal dollars have been used to finance this program.

 


CAMPUS UPDATE: MAY 22, 2020

On Wednesday, May 20, 2020, Governor Cooper announced the progression into Phase Two of his plan to reopen the state. The Safer-at-Home Phase Two plan goes into effect on May 22, 2020 at 5 p.m. and lifts the current stay-at-home order. In Phase Two more businesses will open, mass gatherings will continue to be limited to no more than 10 people indoors, gatherings of up to 25 will be permitted outdoors, and teleworking will continue to be encouraged.

Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, the health and safety of students, faculty, and staff has been our top priority. This will continue to be our focus as we transition back to a more normal state of operations. To do this safely, all persons are strongly encouraged to review the Risk Mitigation and Safety Protocols put into place.

Return to Campus

  • Students
    The first priority as part of our transition is to resume face-to-face learning for students that need to complete their spring semester classes or practical hours that were suspended due to COVID-19 restrictions. Students in the following programs will soon be contacted by their instructor(s) about completing their classes and hours.

    • Cosmetology
    • Esthetics
    • Medical Assisting
    • Phlebotomy
    • Veterinary Technology
    • Welding
    • Automotive

Work-based learning will also resume with safety protocols in place.

The summer semester at Gaston College will begin on May 26, 2020 with the majority of the classes remaining online the entire semester. For the programs/courses that require face-to-face instruction, instructors will communicate what portions will be taught online, and when and how on-campus instruction will take place.

Support for students and prospective students remains available online and by phone or email. For your safety, we ask everyone to connect with staff in one of these ways prior to visiting any of our campuses. When an in-person visit is warranted, staff will schedule an appointment for you during regular business hours. No walk-in service is available at this time. The testing center will also be open by appointment only. Current contact information to connect with various student support offices can be found on our COVID-19 student information page.

  • Faculty and Staff
    The College will continue to utilize teleworking as we begin Phase Two, however, supervisors will be communicating a plan to transition from telework to onsite work soon.
  • Safety Protocols
    The College will remain closed to the public at this time and will only be open for students, faculty, staff and prospective students as necessary. Anyone that is returning to campus is asked to review the College’s Risk Mitigation and Safety Protocols for full details on safety protocols, including face coverings and social distancing. 

If you feel poorly and/or have any symptoms of COVID-19 including a cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fever, chills, muscle pain, sore throat, or new loss of taste or smell stay home and consult your doctor immediately

While we look forward to returning to campus and face-to-face classes, we must remain vigilant about the health and safety of our community. The situation also remains fluid, therefore, plans, guidelines, and protocols may change based on updates from federal, state, and local agencies. We will continue to update you through our COVID-19 website, College email, Blackboard, LEARN, and/or Aviso.

Graduate Celebration
While our graduates didn’t get to walk across the stage last Friday, we created a fun virtual experience for them to celebrate their day. With a special email, congratulatory video, social media filters, and more, we saw some special memories being made! Graduates should be receiving a special package by mail this week as well. We encourage our graduates to continue sharing their celebration on social media by using #GastonGrad2020. Congratulations again Class of 2020!

CARES Act
As a reminder, students who may be eligible for CARES Act funding were contacted via their Gaston College email. Check your email and apply today if you haven’t done so already! Contact the Financial Aid Office at financialaid@gaston.edu if you have questions about the CARES Act.

Summer Schedule
As a reminder, the College began its summer schedule this week. We are open Monday–Thursday, 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. and closed on Fridays through Aug. 14.

 


CAMPUS UPDATE: MAY 13, 2020

As we wrap up our spring 2020 semester we want to say thank you to our students! Thank you for your patience, your perseverance, and for continuing to work towards your educational goals. The challenges have been big, so be proud of your accomplishments! 

Thank you also to our faculty and staff who have shown that our team is strong, agile, and capable of doing great things no matter the obstacles in front of us. We are GC Proud! 

Spring 2020 Reminder
Gaston College extended the class withdrawal deadline to May 14, 2020, for Spring 2020 curriculum courses. Students who would like to withdraw from a spring course should email gcregistrar@gaston.edu no later than 5:00 pm on May 14.

Students who need extra time beyond the end of the Spring 2020 semester (May 14, 2020) to complete their curriculum coursework due to challenges related to COVID-19 ​should speak with their instructor about an “IE” (Incomplete–Emergency) grade. Students receiving an “IE” grade will have until August 27, 2020, to finish their course work to replace the “IE” grade. On a case-by-case basis, the time to complete course work for an “IE” grade may be extended for up to one year from the last day of the Spring 2020 term. If the coursework is not successfully completed within the “IE” time frame, the grade will revert to “WE” (Withdrawal–Emergency).

Graduate Celebration
This Friday, May 15, we are giving our graduates the opportunity to take part in a digital media celebration, including a congratulatory video from the GC community and special social media filters. Graduating students will receive an email Friday morning with links on how to participate. Everyone will have the opportunity to celebrate our graduates and watch the fun on the College’s social media channels. 

Summer 2020 
Summer curriculum classes start on May 26. Whether you are a returning student, a new student, or a visiting student for the summer, there’s still time to register! If you have any questions about applying or registering, contact us, we’re here to help. 

Due to COVID-19 and the related risk factors of in-person events, the College has decided to cancel all Discover GC Summer Camps offered for students ages 12 -18 this year. Many people are involved in the planning of these camps, and although their efforts will not come to fruition for 2020, we thank them for all the pre-work, enthusiasm, and support they bring to offering these camps.

 


CAMPUS UPDATE: MAY 8, 2020

On Tuesday, May 5, Governor Cooper announced that the stay-at-home order for North Carolina would be modified at 5 p.m. today, May 8. This modification begins Phase 1 of his plan to reopen the state.  

Our top priority continues to be the health and safety of our students, faculty, staff, and community. During Phase 1 teleworking will continue to the fullest extent possible and the current operating plan will continue. The College continues to review updated federal, state and local guidance as we determine how to best begin a gradual return to campus as we progress through the Phases. Continue to monitor this webpage and your email for updates.

Graduation
All students that applied for graduation were sent an email this week that included information about caps and gowns, diplomas, and graduation fee credits. Information was also added to the COVID-19 website on the student information page.

Today is the last day for alumni to submit their video messages to our graduating students. Visit gastoncollegefoundation.org/congrats2020/ for details and to send us your video.

CARES Act Funds
Gaston College Spring 2020 students who are eligible to apply for Federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act emergency funds have been contacted via their Gaston College email account. Students should follow the instructions in their email to apply for these funds no later than June 1, 2020. The Financial Aid Office will contact applicants via email within 5-7 business days about the status of their application. If you have any questions you can contact us at financialaid@gaston.edu.

Grant funds have been provided by the U.S. Department of Education Award Number P425E200519100.  100 percent of the cost of this program is financed with federal funds. Gaston College has received $1,260,424 in federal funds to support this program.  Zero percent of non-federal dollars have been used to finance this program. 

 


CAMPUS UPDATE: MAY 1, 2020

In these challenging times, it’s been amazing to watch the GC community work hard and creatively collaborate to support one another and our students. We look forward to finishing the spring semester strong!

Below are several new updates from the College.

Graduation
Perhaps one of the biggest groups impacted during this pandemic is our graduates. Graduation day is a special day not only for our students but also for our faculty and staff, who always look forward to celebrating this achievement with our students and their families.

We announced previously that our traditional May graduation ceremony and other graduation events had to be postponed due to the health crisis. While guidelines and restrictions continue to change, please know that we still plan to celebrate our graduating students once it is safe to do so. The location, format and exact dates are dependent on how quickly we are able to progress through the Governor’s proposed phases of reopening the state. However, we expect these to be smaller group ceremonies at the College in the Fall. We’ll announce more specifics on these as soon as we can. In addition, all 2020 graduates will be invited to participate in our full graduation ceremony in 2021 should they wish to do so.

All students that applied for graduation this spring will be receiving an email next week with more details. This communication will include information about Fall recognition ceremonies, credit for a portion of graduation fees, and cap and gown ordering information for anyone that still wishes to purchase these items.

While we can’t be together to celebrate on May 15, we do have some special things planned to celebrate the achievements of our graduates and let them know how proud of them we are. Alumni interested in participating in part of our virtual celebration activities should check the Alumni Facebook page

Spring 2020 Semester

  • As a reminder, final exams will be administered online. If you have any questions regarding the completion of a course or final exams for your classes, you should contact your instructor.
  • In-person book buyback for Spring semester has been canceled. A virtual book buyback is available online through Nebraska Book Company.

Summer 2020 Semester

  • For summer book orders, students can order through the online bookstore, or call the Bookstore at 704-922-6428 to place their book orders. Books can be shipped directly to students or they can be picked up in person by appointment at the Dallas Campus.
  • Students interested in attending Gaston College as a visiting student for classes this summer can find information about applying and registering here.

CARES Act Funds
Gaston College is pleased to announce that we have received Federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act funding through the U.S. Department of Education. The College has a working committee in place to determine the criteria for distribution. Eligible students will be contacted by the Gaston College Financial Aid Office as soon as the process has been approved.

 


CAMPUS UPDATE: APRIL 24, 2020

As most everyone is aware by now, on April 23, 2020, Governor Cooper announced an extension to the stay-at-home order to May 8, 2020 and a phased approach that is planned to be implemented after the order is lifted. The current operational plans that have been in place since the order began will continue until it is determined we are able to resume normal on-campus operations.

Curriculum Students
Students who need extra time beyond the end of the Spring 2020 semester (May 14, 2020) to complete their curriculum coursework due to challenges related to COVID-19 ​should speak with their instructor about an “IE” (Incomplete–Emergency) grade. Students receiving an “IE” grade will have until August 27, 2020, to finish their course work to replace the “IE” grade. On a case-by-case basis, the time to complete course work for an “IE” grade may be extended for up to one year from the last day of the Spring 2020 term. If the coursework is not successfully completed within the “IE” time frame, the grade will revert to “WE” (Withdrawal–Emergency). The “IE” grade option does not apply to High School seniors in Career and College Promise (CCP) courses.

Graduation
In light of the extension to the stay-at-home order and the phased approach that is planned after the order is lifted, we continue to evaluate options for a graduation event this year. While it is difficult to make solid plans in such uncertain times, and we know our 2020 graduates are anxiously awaiting news, we are still working through various ways to recognize our graduates as soon as possible. We will provide another update regarding graduation events soon.

CARES Act Funds
Gaston College has applied to receive Federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act funding through the U.S. Department of Education. Anticipating that funds will be received and disbursed in the near future, the College has a working committee in place to determine the criteria for distribution.

 


CAMPUS UPDATE: APRIL 17, 2020 (5 p.m.)

Here are the latest updates from the College.

Spring 2020 Semester

As announced earlier this week, Gaston College extended the withdrawal deadline for Spring 2020 curriculum courses to May 14, 2020. Students with any concerns about their course grade should talk to their instructor for guidance. 

Summer 2020 Semester

Don’t forget that advising and registration for returning students will begin next week on April 22, 2020 for Summer semester. Students should check WebAdvisor for their assigned access date. New student registration will begin on May 5, 2020. Students with questions about registration or enrollment should check the student information page for current contact information.                   

Gaston College has been a leader among community colleges in both offering online courses and in helping students to succeed when learning online over the last several years. This commitment remains strong as we continue through this pandemic. The college will continue to maximize the online delivery model that is currently in place as we open registration for summer classes. For courses that have a face-to-face component, you will see a statement in the registration system that says the following, “This class is intended to be offered with a seated component. It may begin in an online format due to COVID-19 and resume the seated portion if/when it is appropriate to do so.”

Tell Us How You’re Giving Back

If you are a GC student, faculty, staff, or alumni making a difference during the pandemic, tell us about the special efforts you are involved in. Whether it’s on the frontlines of this fight, making face masks, donating supplies, volunteering or giving to food banks — every effort is impactful. Share your story with us by emailing us at marketing@gaston.edu.

Please continue to check your College mail and our COVID-19 website for additional updates and resources.


CAMPUS UPDATE: APRIL 3, 2020 (1 p.m.)

As the College continues to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, we have several important updates for you. Please continue to monitor this page for news, updates and announcements.

Spring Semester 2020

  • Courses will continue in an online format through the remainder of the semester unless restrictions change allowing us to resume select classes face-to-face.
  • The College is planning to administer final exams online. If you have any questions regarding the completion of spring term or final exams for your classes, please contact your instructor.
  • Students unable to complete their coursework by May 14, 2020 due to challenges related to COVID-19, will receive an “I” (incomplete) grade and be given until August 27, 2020 to finish and have the incomplete grade replaced with a letter grade. In-person labs will take place when it’s safe to do so. This does not apply to High School seniors in Career and College Promise (CCP) courses.
    • High school seniors enrolled in CCP courses must contact their high school counselor by April 14, 2020 if they will be unable to complete coursework in any of their classes by May 14, 2020 to ensure that their high school graduation is not impacted.
  • As a reminder, all Spring 2020 graduation events have been postponed due to the guidelines and restrictions surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic. The College is working to determine the best way to recognize all graduates in a manner that is safe for everyone.

Summer Semester 2020

  • Advising and registration for returning students will begin as scheduled on April 22, 2020. Students should check WebAdvisor for their assigned access date.
  • Advising and registration for new students will begin as scheduled on May 5, 2020.
  • All summer advising will be offered virtually until it is determined to be safe to resume in-person appointments.
  • The College is looking closely at the summer schedule to maximize the online class delivery model that is currently in place. We’ll have more to share about this in the coming days as we work out the details.

Campus Operations and Travel Restrictions

  • The stay-at-home order remains in place through April 30, 2020 per the statewide order issued by Governor Cooper. The College will continue to maintain essential business operations during this time.
  • All travel restrictions that were previously put in place will now continue until further notice.

Please continue to check your College mail and our COVID-19 website for additional updates, as well as resources to keep you safe.

 


CAMPUS UPDATE: MARCH 27, 2020 (3:30 p.m.)

Gaston College remains committed to ensuring the health, safety and well-being of our students, faculty, staff and community. As the number of positive COVID-19 cases in North Carolina continues to grow we have several updates for you.

Campus Operations and Employees

Yesterday Gaston County joined other local counties in issuing a stay-at-home order. This order goes into effect today, March 27, 2020 at 5 p.m. and will continue through April 16, 2020; however, we will be maintaining essential business and facility operations. All public health guidance for social distancing and handwashing/hygiene will continue to be followed by the employees working on-site. Any employee who feels ill or has symptoms of COVID-19 should stay home, self-monitor and contact their medical provider as necessary.

The same measures will be observed during this time period at all campuses.

Students and Classes

The NC Community College System has granted an exception allowing face-to-face instruction to accommodate the critical need for public health and safety programs in response to this crisis, and these programs will continue. Students who have questions are encouraged to contact their instructor.

The safety of our students is our top priority and all students should continue to follow the guidelines implemented by the College for these classes as well as follow public health guidance for social distancing and handwashing/hygiene. Any student who feels ill or has symptoms of COVID-19 should stay home, self-monitor and contact their medical provider as necessary.

Graduation

In light of recent news and updated guidelines, it has become necessary to postpone all Spring 2020 graduation events, including pinning ceremonies, award banquets and the May 15 graduation ceremony. We share in the disappointment of all our students who have worked hard to reach this milestone, along with their family and friends who have supported them throughout their journey. Your determination to continue in light of the current circumstances is something of which to be proud. You will forever remember this time and be better prepared to face future challenges because of it.  

Be assured that upon completion of credits, you will still earn your degree, diploma or certificate on time, and we are committed to celebrating your success when it is safe to do so. If you have any questions about graduation send them to gcregistrar@gaston.edu.

Student Services and Support

Student Affairs has worked diligently to transition student and related support services online. Staff are available and willing to help students and College employees through both email and virtual meetings. Please visit the Student Information section on the COVID-19 webpage for contact information for each department within student affairs.

Employee Assistance and Student Outreach Services

Don’t forget that services are available for both students and employees at Gaston College that may need support during these times. We encourage you to utilize these services if needed.

  • Enrolled students and their family members can access clinicians that can assist with personal or academic-related challenges and concerns through the Student Outreach Services (SOS) Program.
  • The Employee Assistance Program (EAP) offers short-term counseling and support for employees, dependents, and household members to help manage challenges in life that might adversely impact work performance, and health or well-being.

Please continue to check your College mail and our COVID-19 website for additional updates, as well as resources to keep you safe.

 


CAMPUS UPDATE: MARCH 20, 2020 (1:45 p.m.)

Gaston College remains committed to ensuring the health, safety and well-being of our students, faculty, staff and community. Along with new recommendations from federal, state and health officials, the first positive COVID-19 cases in Gaston and Lincoln Counties were confirmed this week. The number of confirmed statewide cases continues to increase. While we have tried diligently to limit the disruption to our students and employees, it is clear that public health considerations require us to take additional actions.

As such, effective Monday, March 23, Gaston College will close all campuses to students and the public until further notice.

Students

  • All curriculum and continuing education face-to-face classes will be suspended effective Monday, March 23, with the exception of Public Safety (BLET, Fire and EMS) and Public Health (Nursing, Nurse Aide, Medical Assisting, Phlebotomy and Veterinary Medical Technology) classes identified by the NC Community College System as critical in response to this crisis.
  • Students enrolled in face-to-face classes that might be impacted by this change will be contacted by their instructors or staff with specific information and instructions regarding their class.
  • All classes being delivered online will continue.

Campus Operations

  • We remain committed to maintaining support services for our students, faculty and staff and will do so to the fullest extent possible. Alternate contact information to reach departments will be posted on the student and faculty/staff pages.
  • Beginning Monday, March 23, all Gaston College libraries and computer labs will be closed until further notice.
  • The bookstore will be closed until further notice, but will be accepting online orders.

Employees

  • All Gaston College campuses will only be accessible to those positions that have been identified as essential to maintaining business continuity. Other positions will transition to telework to the fullest extent possible until further notice. If you have questions regarding your position please contact your supervisor.

The left navigation menu on this page provides additional information and resources for our students, faculty and staff. Please review for previous updates, contact information, resources and more.

Continue to monitor the gaston.edu website and your college email for information and updates.

 


CAMPUS UPDATE: MARCH 19, 2020 (5 p.m.)

Gaston College remains committed to ensuring the health, safety and well-being of our students, faculty, staff and community. The challenges we are facing are unprecedented and they impact all of us on many different levels. The situation remains fluid and information is subject to change. We appreciate and ask for your continued patience as we work together to overcome these challenges.

We encourage you to follow the recommendations from the CDC on preventing illness. If you are experiencing any symptoms of illness, including a fever, cough, or shortness of breath, you should contact your doctor and remain off campus.

Suspension of Face-to-Face Classes

Following the most recent recommendations from federal and state officials, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), and the NC Community College System, Gaston College will suspend face-to-face classes beginning Monday, March 23 until further notice.

  • As of March 18, the majority of our classes have been converted to online delivery. These courses will continue online.
  • Students enrolled in classes that cannot be offered remotely will be contacted by their instructors or staff with specific information and instructions regarding their classes.
  • Public Safety (BLET, Fire and EMS) and Public Health (Nursing, Nurse Aide, Medical Assisting, Phlebotomy and Veterinary Medical Technology) classes are able to continue as an exception to accommodate the critical need for public safety and public health services in response to this crisis per the NC Community College System. At this time public safety and health classes will continue.

Campus Operations

  • The college will remain open for essential operations at this time for business continuity; however, beginning Monday, March 23, access and availability of our staff will be limited as we transition to staggered work schedules and telework to the fullest extent possible.
  • Student support services that can be offered remotely will continue. All contact information for departments is listed on the Student Information page.
  • Libraries will remain open, but will be restricted to students only until further notice.
  • Computer labs at the Kimbrell and Lincoln campus will be open. The Dallas Campus will close all computer labs except for those in CET 119, DBC 219, PTI 119, and the Morris Library. Access to all labs, including the Morris Library, is restricted to students only. Social distancing guidelines should be practiced in all labs and capacity will be limited to 10 people.
  • Beginning Monday, March 23, the bookstore will be open Monday-Friday, 10 a.m.-3 p.m.
  • The restriction on events continues, although there is much uncertainty on when that may be lifted. At this time, no decision has been made regarding the May 15 graduation ceremony. We’ll continue to monitor the guideline for group gatherings and update you as soon as possible.

Employee Assistance and Student Outreach Services

This is a stressful time for all of us. Services are available for both students and employees at Gaston College. We encourage you to utilize these services if needed.

  • Enrolled students and their family members can access clinicians that can assist with personal or academic-related challenges and concerns through the Student Outreach Services (SOS) Program.
  • The Employee Assistance Program (EAP) offers short-term counseling and support for employees, dependents, and household members to help manage challenges in life that might adversely impact work performance, and health or well-being.

Continue to monitor the gaston.edu website for information and updates.


 

CAMPUS UPDATE: MARCH 16, 2020 (4 p.m.)

Gaston College remains committed to ensuring the health, safety and well-being of our students, faculty, staff and community. The challenges we are facing are unprecedented, and the days and weeks ahead will be difficult as we navigate this pandemic. The guidance and recommendations from public health and government officials continues to evolve daily. Continue to refer to the gaston.edu website for updates and information.

We encourage you to follow the recommendations from the CDC on preventing illness. If you are experiencing any symptoms of illness, including a fever, cough, or shortness of breath, you should remain off-campus and contact your doctor.

New or extended cancellations or closings

Effective immediately:

  • Gaston College’s Cosmetology, Esthetics and Therapeutic Massage programs will suspend client services until further notice.
  • Mugshots café and the fitness center located on the Dallas campus will be closed until further notice.
  • In line with the updated recommendation from the CDC and the state, the College’s suspension of all events and gatherings over 50 people is now extended through May 11, 2020.

Curriculum Students

  • Check Blackboard for updates from instructors on how your course will be delivered starting Wednesday, March 18, 2020.
  • Early College students should also check Blackboard regarding their college courses.

Continuing Education, Business and Industry Training and Small Business Center

  • Continuing education includes a wide range of programs offered in different environments. Some classes may be able to continue while maintaining all recommended guidelines. The office is working on contacting individuals for classes that are postponed or canceled. Contact ConEd@gaston.edu with any questions.
  • At present, all Life Skills programs including GED, Adult High School, Basic Skills, and High School Equivalency continue as scheduled with social distancing guidelines in place. Some classes may be moved to larger spaces to accommodate requirements. For questions on current program schedules contact Tonya Propst (Propst.Tonya@gaston.edu) for Lincoln County and Belinda Butler (Butler.Belinda@gaston.edu) for Gaston County.
  • All Nurse Aide students will begin instruction on Wednesday, March 18. Instructors will be contacting students regarding clinical hours.
  • Business and Industry training programs include many partnerships and courses taught at offsite locations. If programs cannot be safely continued, partners and students will be contacted. Contact Emily Hansley (hansley.emily@gaston.edu) for Lincoln County questions and Latoya Conners (conners.latoya@gaston.edu) for Gaston County questions.
  • The Small Business Center at Gaston College remains open for clients. All classes will continue as scheduled at this time with social distancing guidelines in place. Some classes may be moved to larger spaces to accommodate requirements. Contact Brad Rivers (rivers.brad@gaston.edu) with any questions.

 

CAMPUS UPDATE: MARCH 14, 2020 (8:30 p.m.)

Based on updated guidelines and recommendations we received late this afternoon, we believe it is necessary to implement plans to move Gaston College’s curriculum classes to an online format to the fullest extent possible as of Wednesday, March 18, 2020.

Students

  • Faculty will be in contact with students via blackboard or gaston.edu email by the end of the day Monday, March 16, 2020 to communicate any changes to class format that will begin on Wednesday, March 18, 2020.
  • A few courses will remain in-person or in a hybrid format combining online work with in-person meetings. These courses will be conducted with social distancing guidelines in place.
  • These changes will remain in place through April 9, 2020 and, as conditions evolve, will continue to be evaluated and any changes communicated as quickly as possible.
  • Continuing education and the small business center will continue in their current format as regularly scheduled with social distancing guidelines in place. 
  • Continue to monitor your health and if you’re feeling ill stay home and contact your instructor.

Faculty and Staff

  • All faculty and staff should continue to report as scheduled on Monday, March 16, 2020.
  • Continue to monitor your health and if you’re feeling ill stay home and contact your supervisor.

 

CAMPUS UPDATE: MARCH 13, 2020 (12:15 p.m.)

The health and safety of our Gaston College community remains our top priority. There are currently no confirmed or presumptive positive coronavirus cases identified in Gaston or Lincoln counties or at any Gaston College campus.

Our Governor is not recommending any presumptive closures for schools or daycare centers at this time. The North Carolina Community College System Office has followed that with a recommendation that community colleges, with the exception of those in an area of the state currently labeled a “viral high-intensity area,” remain open and adhere to normal classroom delivery methods, while stressing preventative measures.

However, we are making some changes to the schedule for faculty and curriculum students next week, so please read the following information carefully.

Students

  • We are extending spring break for curriculum students through Tuesday, March 17, 2020 while our faculty and staff continue to prepare for future changes that may become necessary.
  • Continuing education and small business classes should continue to report to classes as currently scheduled.
  • The campus will remain open during this time.
  • At this time, all curriculum students should report to campus for their classes as regularly scheduled on Wednesday, March 18, 2020.
  • All event and travel changes announced on March 12, 2020 remain in effect and unchanged.

Faculty and Staff

  • Faculty are to report to the Dallas campus on Monday, March 16, 2020 at 9 a.m. as we continue to prepare for future changes that might become necessary. Full and part-time faculty will receive additional communication via email today.
  • All staff are asked to report as regularly scheduled on Monday, March 16, 2020.
  • All event and travel changes announced on March 12, 2020 remain in effect and unchanged.

Gaston College continues to closely follow all developments and recommendations from local and state officials about this rapidly evolving situation. We ask everyone to continue to follow the CDC guidelines for keeping yourself safe and what to do if you are sick.

We will continue to provide updates via this website and email as necessary.

A message from Acting President Cynthia McCrory was emailed to students, faculty and staff today. View message.


 

CAMPUS UPDATE: MARCH 12, 2020

Students, Faculty and Staff
Normal campus operations continue and curriculum classes will resume on Monday, March 16, 2020. This could change quickly based on any new recommendations we receive from federal, state or local agencies. Any necessary changes will be communicated here.

If you have been diagnosed with the coronavirus, have been notified you were exposed to coronavirus, or if you are experiencing any symptoms of the coronavirus, including a fever, cough or shortness of breath, you should follow the guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) for self-monitoring and seeking medical care. You should remain off-campus until cleared by a medical professional. Students should notify Dr. Audrey Sherrill at 704.922.6217 or vpstudentaffairs@gaston.edu as soon as possible. Faculty and staff are asked to notify Carol Denton in Human Resources immediately at 704.922.6484 or denton.carol@gaston.edu.

As a safety precaution and to prevent and help reduce the risk of exposure to coronavirus, Gaston College is adopting the following, effective immediately:

On-campus events

  • Events and gatherings of 50 or more people at any Gaston College campus that are not related to instruction will be postponed or canceled. This will remain in effect through at least April 4, 2020. We will continue to monitor the situation and if an extension is needed we will communicate that to the campus.
  • We urge everyone to consider alternative options, such as conference calls, video conferencing, etc. for smaller events and gatherings as well.
  • Contact the event organizer if you have any questions about an event you’re planning to attend.

Travel

  • All international and domestic college-related travel that is outside the state of North Carolina is being suspended through April 17, 2020 for all faculty, staff and students. We will continue to monitor the situation and if conditions warrant an extension will be communicated to the campus.
  • In-state college-related travel that is outside of the College’s service area will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis and must be approved by the President.
  • We are following the guidance from the CDC regarding international travel. Any student, faculty or staff member returning to the United States from a location with a Level 3 or Level 2 warning is being asked to self-quarantine at home for a minimum of 14 days prior to returning to campus.
    • Students who have traveled to these locations in the last 30 days, including over spring break, should notify Dr. Audrey Sherrill at 704.922.6217 or sherrill.audrey@gaston.edu immediately.
    • Faculty or staff who have traveled to these locations in the last 30 days should notify Carol Denton at 704.922.6484 or denton.carol@gaston.edu in Human Resources immediately.
  • The College is also discouraging any personal nonessential domestic and international travel at this time. If you are traveling, follow all travel precautions and guidance from the CDC and the U.S. Department of State.
  • Employees who travel to states outside of North Carolina that have declared a state of emergency due to the coronavirus are urged to notify their supervisor. Those employees returning from out-of-state travel may be asked to self-quarantine off-campus for 14 days.

Enhanced cleaning procedures
We are continuing precautionary efforts on campus and have increased the frequency of cleaning high touch point areas such as door handles and tables. Our building maintenance and housekeeping staff follow all recommended cleaning guidelines by the CDC and other health agencies.

Continued preventive measures
The best way to protect yourself is to clean your hands often. Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. You should also avoid touching your face. See additional measures recommended by the CDC.

 


CAMPUS UPDATE MARCH 10, 2020

A state of emergency was declared in North Carolina by Gov. Roy Cooper earlier today. However, there remains no known cases of coronavirus in Gaston or Lincoln counties at this time. Similarly, there are no known cases among Gaston College students, faculty or staff.

The situation is evolving rapidly and we will continue to monitor all updated guidelines and recommendations from the CDC, work closely with local and state health officials, and provide updates as available.


CAMPUS UPDATE MARCH 4, 2020

Gaston College has been monitoring the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) situation since the World Health Organization (WHO) classified it as a global health emergency in January 2020. Gaston College has an Emergency Operations Team (EOT) committee that is monitoring and reviewing information and recommendations related to this outbreak. We will continue to update and communicate with all faculty, staff, and students as necessary to ensure the safety and well-being of our community.

What you Need to Know

Help stop the spread of rumors and misinformation by understanding the Facts about COVID-19 from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). The CDC also has many FAQs that you can review.

Prevention

Both the CDC and WHO recommend everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory diseases and other viruses.

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

People who think they may have been exposed to COVID-19 should contact their healthcare provider immediately. Let them know if you have traveled to a location with a COVID-19 outbreak or have had contact with someone with a confirmed case of COVID-19.

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