COVID-19

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The faculty and staff at Wilkes Community College stand ready to support our students fully as we work through this crisis. The college administration stands ready to support our faculty and staff in that work. We ask that everyone continue to refer to this page for the most up-to-date information on anything related to the College’s institutional response. Wilkes Community College serves a resilient community, and we will get through this together. We will keep you updated with the latest information available as we move forward.

COVID-19 Dashboard

Wilkes Community College serves between 10,000 – 11,000 students annually and has approximately 800 full-time and part-time employees.

The Active Cases graph represents the daily log of active COVID-19 cases starting on August 27th, 2020. An individual is considered active during the period between their positive test date and their follow-up date. To the side of the graph you can see today’s active cases broken down by students and employees.

The Cumulative Cases graph represents the total amount of cases over time starting on August 27th, 2020. Every new active case is included in the graph at the date it became active, building towards the overall number of cases. To the side of the graph you can see the total amount of cases broken down by students and employees.

Campus Safety

Masks must be worn inside all WCC buildings including the main campus, Ashe campus, Alleghany Center or other instructional location. Disposable masks are available in the Human Resources Office and in division offices if you need one.

  • While the social distancing mandate is lifted, we are encouraging everyone to continue to practice social distancing where practical. For example, maintaining at least two feet of social distance in classrooms is still recommended.
  • People who have not been vaccinated should consider trying to continue to maintain the six feet of social distance when feasible.
  • We will discontinue the weekly COVID-19 Attestation Form for Faculty/Staff and daily for the students. Instead, we will simply ask those who are having symptoms, have been diagnosed with or had a known exposure to COVID-10 to self-report.
  • Any person exhibiting these symptoms — fever in last 48 hours, new cough or shortness of breath — should not come to campus. Please continue to monitor yourself for any COVID-19-related symptoms and stay home if you have any of these symptoms.
  • Please use the COVID-19 Reporting Form to report if you are having symptoms of, been exposed to, tested and awaiting results for, or been diagnosed with COVID-19.
  • Students should also notify their instructors if they self-report.
  • Employees should also notify their immediate supervisors.

The Governor and the N.C. Department of Health and Human Services strongly recommend unvaccinated persons eligible for vaccination in the state be vaccinated as soon as possible. All persons in North Carolina age 12 and older are eligible. Wilkes Community College encourages all members of the college community – students, faculty and staff – to get vaccinated as soon as possible.

Everyone is expected to practice good hygiene, including covering coughs and sneezes with a tissue or the inside of your elbow, not with your hands; not touching your face; handwashing for at least 20 seconds with soap and water; and using hand sanitizer.

You are expected to wash your hands:

  • At the beginning and end of each class or work shift
  • After using the restroom
  • Before and after eating
  • After blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing

Hand sanitizer will be placed at the main entrance of each building. Please use the sanitizer every time you enter a building.

We will re-open our wellness/fitness rooms.  Our custodial staff will complete a thorough cleaning daily. We will also provide disinfecting wipes and ask that you wipe off the equipment after each use.

  • We have been working toward a full transition back to campus for all employees by August 1, 2021.
  • Given this new guidance, we will begin that transition immediately, with a deadline for all employees to return fully back to campus from their telework locations by Monday, June 14, 2021.
  • Any future telework arrangements beyond that date must be approved by your immediate supervisor and the rest of the chain of command, with the president having final approval for each individual making that request.

All travel restrictions are lifted with the exception that when students and/or employees are riding together for field trips or professional travel, we will follow the guidelines for public transportation and ask that masks be worn while in vehicles.

Online Learning

Visit the Online Learning page for information about course types, frequently asked questions, and more.

“How Do I…” guides are available on Prowler. If you need further assistance, please submit a Prowler Help Desk Ticket.

Online tutoring is available via Microsoft Teams or Collaborate.

To access tutoring, students can click the button below, the tutoring icon on Prowler, or click “Schedule Tutoring” in the Tutoring Help section in Moodle. Students can also submit papers online to be reviewed.

High school students enrolled in college courses can receive additional tutoring through Tutor.com.

Communicate Often.

  • Check Moodle and your WCC email account daily for communications from faculty and staff. For your convenience, download the Outlook app to your smartphone.
  • Advising for summer and fall is taking place virtually using email, phone and other forms of technology. Please contact your academic advisor using your WCC email account for advising.
  • For questions about tutoring and study skills support, connect live with an ASC staff member in Moodle on Academic Support Center: Tutoring.
  • If you’re part of the SAGE program, stay in close contact with your SAGE staff.

Take Care Of Yourself.

  • Get adequate rest, nutrition, exercise and sleep to keep yourself healthy.
  • Balance coursework with time to read and interact with friends and family virtually through social media and video chat.
  • Make sure you have the food, medication, toiletries and other household items you need to go about your daily life.
  • Need a little help? Check out the Resources page for campus and community help available, including free and reduced cost services.
  • Personal counseling is provided to currently enrolled Wilkes Community College students on a short term basis. Visit the Counseling page to learn more. For emergencies, call 911.

Utilize Available Resources.

  • The Academic Support Center will provide online tutoring via Skype or Microsoft Teams. To access tutoring, students can go to the “Schedule Tutoring” link in the Tutoring Help section in Moodle, or click on the Tutoring Icon on WCC Prowler. Students can also submit papers to be reviewed at WCC PaperReview. For more information, watch this video.
  • High school students enrolled in college courses can receive additional tutoring through Tutor.com.
  • Access Pardue Library resources online. For immediate assistance, Ask-a-Librarian on our 24/7 research assistance chat room.
  • Find broadband internet options near you in the Resources tab.

Manage Your Environment.

  • Schedule specific times in your day to dedicate to studying or participating in your online class. Check with your instructor to see if you should be calling into live web classes.
  • Consider using the “Do Not Disturb” function on your devices or a lockdown browser on your computer when you are trying to manage distractions.
  • Find a space that is comfortable and allows you to focus. This can be your home base for coursework.
  • Allow yourself time for breaks.

Ask For Help.

  • Need tech support? Read the “How Do I…?” guides on WCC Prowler! If you can’t find the information you need, submit a Prowler Help Desk ticket.
  • If you need learning accommodations, request help from Disability Services.
  • Contact your instructor for resources specific to your courses, or your academic advisor with any academic questions you may have.
  • If you need help beyond academics – if you don’t have a computer, or are worried about where your next meal is going to come from – please reach out to us. We may not have all the answers, but we will do our best to support you through this time.

Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act Student Emergency Grant

Wilkes Community College (WCC) signed and returned to the Department of Education the Certification and Agreement on April 24, 2020. WCC provides assurance that the institution has used, or intends to use, no less than 50 percent of the funds received under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act to provide Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students.

Wilkes Community College has received $700,541 from the Department pursuant to the institution’s Certification and Agreement [for] Emergency Financial Aid Grants to students.

Wilkes Community College estimates that 960 students at the institution 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 October 9, 2020, Wilkes Community College has distributed 977 grants, funded under Section 18004(a)(1) of the CARES Act Emergency Financial Aid Grant Program, totaling $732,791 to 819 students.

Funds will be awarded on a weekly basis, based on receipt of applications.

Wilkes Community College used the following criteria to determine student eligibility for the Emergency Financial Aid Grants. All eligible students will receive $750.00.

  • To qualify a student must have been enrolled in 9 or more credit hours that were not exclusively online instruction as of March 13, 2020. Students enrolled for fewer than 9 credit hours may apply by providing documentation of extenuating circumstances.
  • Per the Department of Education, only students who are or could be eligible to participate in programs under Section 484 in Title IV of the Higher Education Act of 1965, may receive emergency financial aid grants. The criteria to participate in these programs include US citizenship or eligible noncitizenship; a valid Social Security number; registration with Selective Service (if the student is male); and a high school diploma or GED.
  • Therefore, the following students are not eligible for the Student Emergency Assistance funds:
    • Career and College Promise (high school) students
    • Wilkes Early College High School and Ashe Early College High School students
    • International and undocumented students (including DACA)
    • Online students (enrolled exclusively in online classes as of March 13)
    • Students who are not maintaining satisfactory academic progress (SAP)

Wilkes Community College put information about the Emergency grants on our COVID-19 webpage. The following information was provided to students.

The US Department of Education has distributed funds to college to provide direct emergency cash grants to college students whose lives and education have been disrupted by the coronavirus outbreak. This funding is available through the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund authorized by the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act.

These emergency grants are intended to assist students with expenses related to disruptions to their education due to the COVID-19 outbreak, including childcare, food, healthcare/medical, housing (including increased utility costs), technology (including computer or WiFi access for online classes), and other items.

WCC sent eligible students an email link to the online application. Students were required to use their WCC user ID and password to access the application. All students were sent follow-up communication about their application to their WCC student email address.

Funds will be dispersed via direct deposit or check. The college will make every effort to distribute funds on a weekly basis.

CARES Act Institutional Funds Reports

Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act (CRRSAA); also referred to as HEERF 2

Wilkes Community College (WCC) signed and returned to the Department of Education the Certification and Agreement on January 19, 2021. WCC provides assurance that the institution has used, or intends to use, no less than the required amount of funds received to provide HEERF grants to students.

Wilkes Community College has received $700,541 from the Department to award emergency grants to students which may be used for any component of the student’s cost of attendance or for emergency costs that arise due to coronavirus, such as tuition, food, housing, health care, or childcare.

Wilkes Community College acknowledges that it prioritized grants to students with exceptional need.

Exceptional Need was first defined as WCC students receiving Pell grants. On March 26, 2021, WCC awarded grants to 689 students, with full-time students receiving $750 and part-time students receiving $500, for a total of $450,250.

On June 2, 2021, WCC awarded grants in the amount of $500 to 61 Workforce Development students enrolled in programs leading to a workforce credential who demonstrated an exceptional need. This need was determined by an application where students indicated a financial need stemming from loss of employment for self or family members, reduced income, food insecurity, housing insecurity or other exceptional needs due to the coronavirus.

On Friday, June 25, 293 traditional students enrolled summer semester who did not receive emergency grants fall or spring semester, received the following email:

As a student attending WCC during 2021 summer you have been selected to apply for a HEERF II Student Emergency Grant. These funds are available to our students through the Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund II grant that was authorized by congress through the CRRSAA of 2021. These funds are to assist students enrolled at Wilkes who have a need for housing, food, etc. related to the COVID-19 pandemic. This is a grant that does not need to be paid back and is available to our traditional college students this summer. In order to receive these funds, you will need to complete the application below. Applications should be submitted by July 2, 2021 for consideration. This is an electronic application that will be submitted immediately upon completion. Once approved you will receive an email to your WCC email address letting you know when you can expect to receive the funds. If you have any questions, please reach out to me.

On July 16, 89 students received emergency grants in the amount of $750, for a total awarded of $66,750.

On July 30, 2021, 47 students received emergency grants in the amount of $750, for a total of $35,250.

As of July 30, 2021, WCC had dispersed $582,750.

On September 24, 2021, 186 students received emergency grants totaling $117,791.

Students who completed the FAFSA and had a maximum EFC of $15,000 were awarded grants, distributed as following:

  • 1-6 credit hours: 87 students received $500
  • 7-11 credit hours: 97 students received $750; 1 student received $407.50; 1 student received $1133.50

As of September 24, 2021, Wilkes Community College has distributed 1072 grants, funded through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act, totaling $700,541.

American Rescue Plan/HEERF III

Wilkes Community College received $2,422,469 from the American Rescue Plan Act for the purpose of awarding emergency grants to students which may be used for any component of the student’s cost of attendance or for emergency costs that arise due to coronavirus, such as tuition, food, housing, health care, or childcare.

Wilkes Community College acknowledges that it will prioritize grants to students with exceptional need.

On September 24, 2021, WCC awarded grants to 714 students with exceptional need, which included students who submitted a FAFSA with a maximum EFC of $15,000.

Emergency grant awards were distributed as follows:

Credit Hours Amount Per Student Number of Students Total Amount
1-6 $500 46 $23,000
7-11 $700 192 $144,000
12+ $1,000 475 $475,000
1 student paid from both HEERF 2 and 3: $342.50 HEERF 3
Total Awarded $642,342.50

On October 15, 2021, WCC awarded grants to 803 students who did not have a FAFSA on file or who had an EFC greater than $15,000. According to the HOPE Center, 50% of non-Pell eligible students are basic needs insecure; therefore WCC has determined that these students have a need for HEERF III emergency grants.

Emergency grant awards were distributed as follows:

Credit Hours Amount Per Student Number of Students Total Amount
1-6 $250 293 $73,250
7-11 $500 259 $129,500
12+ $750 251 $188,250
Total Awarded 10/15/21 803 $391,000
Total HEERF III Awarded 1517 $1,033,342.50
On Wednesday, November 17, 2021, emergency grant aid was awarded to curriculum students with increased hours due to enrollment in late start classes, and to Workforce Development student enrolled in programs leading to a workforce credential.

Emergency grant awards were distributed as follows:

Credit Hours EFC Amount Per Student Number of Students Total Amount
1-6 $0 – $15,000 $500 8 $4,000
$15,001+ / no FAFSA $250 13 $3,250
7-11 $0 – $15,000 $750 1 $750
$250 37 $9,250
$15,001+ / no FAFSA $250 29 $7,250
$500 2 $1,000
12+ $0 – $15,000 $250 103 $25,750
$500 15 $8,500
$1,000 1 $1,000
$15,001+ / no FAFSA $250 44 $11,000
$500 1 $500
$750 3 $2,250
WDCE NA $750 77 $57,750
$500 95 $47,500
Total Awarded 11/17/21 430 $178,750
Total Unduplicated Students Receiving HEERF III Awards 1722 $1,211,592.50

On Friday, December 10, 2021, emergency grant aid was awarded to two Workforce Development student enrolled in the IT Support program which leads to a workforce credential.

Emergency grant awards were distributed as follows:

Credit Hours EFC Amount Per Student Number of Students Total Amount
WDCE