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For Fall Semester 2020, we have developed a multimodal approach to learning that upholds our commitment to educational integrity and quality.

The curriculum will be a  combination of an on-campus experience with remote instruction. Faculty will have the flexibility for physically distant presentations and demonstrations, small group discussions, and one-to-one meetings. Facilities and classrooms will be available by reservation while students will have access to their studios.

Read MCAD'S COVID-19 Preparedness Plan

Fall 2020 Updates

Last updated: October 20, 2020, at 9:57 a.m. CDT


health, wellness, and safety practices  academics and access to mcad facilities  life on campus
 

Special Information For

returning undergraduate students  new undergraduate students  mfa students  MA students
international students  spring 2020 graduates  faculty and staff


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New Health, Wellness, and Safety Practices on Campus

MCAD is committed to providing a safe and healthy workplace for all members of the community. Faculty, staff, and students are MCAD’s most important priority. The collective goal is to enable everyone to work, learn, and live in the safest place possible. The threat from COVID-19 is not over, and it continues to affect everyone in different ways.

Good Health Habits

  • Wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. 
  • Use hand sanitizer.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze.
  • Clean all high touch areas in your home and workplace.
  • Do not touch your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Cloth masks are required in all public settings (per the Minneapolis Mayor’s Executive Order and following CDC guidance). Staff, faculty, students, and guests need to wear face coverings when visiting campus. 

Consistent with MCAD longstanding compliance with HIPAA and patient privacy, the College protects the privacy of faculty, student, and staff health status and health information. Managers and supervisors are reminded that they have an obligation to protect the privacy of employee health information. 

MCAD will work with the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) to inform workers if they have been exposed to a person with COVID-19 in the workplace, and MDH will require them to self- quarantine for the recommended amount of time.

Individual Circumstances

If an individual who has been instructed to return to work on-site has concerns about doing so due to a medical condition or other factors that place them at a higher risk, or if individuals wish to seek ADA reasonable accommodations related to returning to the workplace, they should contact Human Resources to initiate a review determine any appropriate accommodation(s).

The College has leave policies that encourage faculty and staff to stay at home when they are sick, when household members are sick, or when they are required by a healthcare provider to isolate or quarantine themselves or a member of their household. This is covered by MCAD’s existing Earned Sick and Safe Time policies as well as MCAD’s Emergency Sick Time policies which can be found on the MCAD Intranet. 

There are some MCAD community members who may be unable to accommodate wearing a mask. For faculty, staff, or students with underlying medical conditions, or who have household members with underlying health conditions, HR has designed an iterative process for ADA purposes and the following policies, resources, and supports are available on the Disability Accommodation page on the MCAD Intranet.  

Cleaning and Disinfection 

Regular housekeeping practices have been enhanced by MCAD, including additional routine cleaning and disinfecting of public use areas, such as the restrooms and the College Center.  Frequent cleaning and disinfecting will be conducted in high-touch areas, such as controls, door handles, elevator panels, railings, etc.

  • All custodial staff have been provided refresher training on proper cleaning techniques, as well as background information on COVID-19. All cleaning products meet U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) requirements.
  • If there is a confirmed positive case reported to MCAD, the custodial staff will coordinate cleaning and disinfecting of that individual's work space.
  • Custodians will clean public spaces such as building lobbies, restrooms, door handles, handrails, and elevator buttons at least once daily, and more frequently if deemed necessary.
  • Custodians will no longer enter individual private offices or departments. Office users should empty their own trash/recycling into bins that are centrally located outside of the offices and disinfect their spaces. Cleaning kits and training will be provided to each department and staff member. Custodians will disinfect, clean, and vacuum individual offices upon special request. These requests should be directed to Facilities
  • For shared departmental equipment, such as phones, keyboards, and copiers, individual users will be responsible to clean these surfaces prior to individual use. Cleaning kits will be provided to each department.
  • Faculty, staff, and visitors will avoid using anyone else’s personal protective equipment, phones, computer equipment, desks, cubicles, workstations, offices, or other personal work tools and equipment. There are some situations where work tools must be shared. In those situations, employees should take precautions to sanitize them between use, as well as wash their hands before and after use.
  • In areas where there is shared workspace, employees are expected to disinfect those workspaces prior to using it. Where workstations do not permit at least 6' between employees, employees will wear cloth masks at all times.

Restrooms

  • All restrooms have been evaluated for physical distancing, ventilation and sanitation requirements.  
  • Various sinks and urinals are being closed in order to promote physical distancing. 
  • Signs have been installed in every restroom to provide reminders of good health and hygiene habits.  
  • Arm pull handles have been installed on most restroom entry doors where possible.  
  • The exhaust and ventilation systems have been inspected to ensure they are working properly.
  • Hand sanitizer stations have been added near the entries of each restroom.  
  • The restrooms will be cleaned once per day and high touch points surfaces will be disinfected more often.

Ventilation

The Facilities Department has applied a multi-layered approach utilizing control strategies to minimize risk of transmission through the air. Depending on building systems and population density in buildings, control strategies may include:

  • Maximizing the amount of outdoor air ventilation
  • Minimizing recirculated air
  • Increasing filtration efficiency 
  • Bypassing energy recovery systems with potential for cross-contamination
  • Operating building systems 24/7
  • Ongoing maintenance to ensure proper function

These strategies will be coordinated with space allocation, scheduling, planning, disinfection and cleaning measures. MCAD will follow the standards of the American Society of Heating and Refrigerating Engineers (ASHRAE)

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Academics and Access to Facilities

Academics

In order to maintain a healthy, supportive community within these new limitations, MCAD has developed a multimodal approach to teaching and learning. Students will have access to MCAD shops, studios, and facilities in order to complete their work. MCAD will deliver the curriculum through remote instruction, complemented by limited on-campus experiences that follow all safety regulations for MCAD facilities. Faculty will have the option to host on-campus demonstrations, small group discussions or presentations. Facilities and classrooms will be available by reservation as noted below.

No faculty member or student will be required to be on campus.

  • All students who choose to come to campus will have access to MCAD facilities and studios to complete work; there will also be additional, reservable space on campus dedicated for students to attend class remotely or meet in small groups. (see classroom and facilities scheduling section below for details).
  • Support staff in the various facilities and shops including the Library, Media Center, Printshop, 3D Shop, Service Bureau, etc. will be present to safely offer guidance and support to students.
  • Students will also have access to equipment to check-out on campus in order to complete work.
  • Undergraduate class instruction will be delivered remotely online.
  • Faculty will determine the appropriate blend of synchronous and asynchronous remote instruction for each class that best supports student learning outcomes.
  • To complement remote instruction, faculty will have access to facilities for optional demos and small group activities (see classroom and facilities scheduling section below for details).
  • Students are expected to complete all assignments through the means they have available to them, whether on campus, in their studios, or remotely.
  • All in-person demonstrations or activities will be live-streamed, prerecorded, or recorded to accommodate the students who are unable to come to campus to participate.
  • Students, faculty, and staff must adhere to MCAD health and safety guidelines while on campus. These guidelines also determine capacity for all activities.
  • The directors of the academic support units (Printshop, 3D Shop, Service Bureau, Media Center, etc.) are the primary decision-makers, in consultation with MCAD leadership, about access and capacity within their spaces.
  • MFA classes are scheduled to be in-person in the MFA Building (separate from the main MCAD buildings).

Critiques

Hallways are shared spaces that make it impossible for appropriate physical distancing and cannot be used for small group activities or critiques.

Students may wish to install or hang their work ahead of class time for asynchronous viewing by peers and faculty who are on campus. All student work, installed on campus or not, should be documented by students and shared with the class for remote critiques. Critiques are organized by faculty according to the specifics of each class and students should adhere to the particulars outlined in their course syllabus.

Digital Resources

Faculty and students have access to Canvas or Blackboard Learning Management Systems for hosting their blended class. MCAD faculty and students may use Google Meet for hosting live online class sessions and office hours. Additionally students and faculty have access to:

  • Personal file storage with studio.mcad.edu and class collaboration file storage on class.mcad.edu. Additional collaboration using the Google Education Suite with the ability to co-edit documents, spreadsheets, and presentations in real time. 
  • Licensed software, use of high-end 3D animation, and film computers on campus and remote.
  • Additional video resources provided by LinkedIn Learning
  • A wide range of digital learning resources from the library.

Classroom and Facilities Scheduling

Due to MDH Guidelines for physical distancing, MCAD will limit the number of people in all rooms. This guidance necessitates that students spread their work spaces across the campus by opening up classrooms. Moving to remote instruction for all courses provides the necessary room flexibility to accommodate student work space needs.

Students wishing to use facilities outside of class time will need to make a reservation using the online reservation system (WC Online). Students may also reserve a classroom for work space using the online reservation system.

With few exceptions, the majority of classes will not have a room assignment as they are being taught remotely. MyMCAD will indicate this as REM for remote. Faculty who are teaching remotely who do not have a room assignment may reserve a classroom for a specific date for small group activities or demonstrations. There will be a block of rooms dedicated for booking by faculty for small group activities.

Studio classes that require facilities access for student use during class time will retain their room assignments. The room assignment will be indicated on the room schedule and on appropriate class syllabi.

In order to maintain safe distancing for student use of facilities during scheduled class time, faculty should divide their classes into appropriately sized groups, particular to the specific space, and assign each group a time slot during the class period. Guidance for the occupancy of all campus spaces is being worked on and will be made public in a subsequent communication. 

In-Person Demonstrations

All in-person demonstrations or activities must follow safety regulations for MCAD facilities and must be live-streamed, prerecorded, or recorded and disseminated for students who are unable to be on campus. 

Faculty who intend to hold in-person demonstrations or activities and would like to check-out equipment for use during the session must email AV Support, with your Chair copied, one week in advance so they can prepare the necessary equipment.  

For faculty who would like to conduct in-person demos in facilities and shop spaces, they must email the unit directly to make appropriate arrangements:

  • 3D Shop: 3dshop@mcad.edu
  • Digital Print Lab and Service Bureau:  service_bureau@mcad.edu
  • Media Center: media_center@mcad.edu
  • Printshop and Papermaking Studio:  printmakingstudio@mcad.edu
  • Academic Services: academic_services@mcad.edu
  • Help Desk: helpdesk@mcad.edu

Thanksgiving Break, November 25-27

Due to the safety of our community and limiting the spread of COVID-19, students who return home for Thanksgiving break are advised to not return to the MCAD campus for the final two weeks of the term. Faculty will construct their syllabus to allow for the completion of student work remotely during the final two weeks of the term.

Academic Facilities 

Library 

The Library will be open to students, faculty and staff to use and borrow physical materials, but with reduced seating capacity to maintain physical distancing. However, classes will not be coming into the Library; Library-based instruction will be held remotely. Course reserves will be maintained and open to students with safety measures in place. Some Library users will not be physically on campus and library staff will provide increased online support and alternative delivery of physical items.

3D Shop 

The 3D shop will be open for all students, faculty and staff from 8 a.m. until 9 p.m. Monday-Thursday, Friday 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Saturday-Sunday 12 p.m. to 5 p.m. An outdoor workspace (studio/classroom) will be available for class demos and project fabrication. Appointments for tool access, staff consultation and demo requests can be reserved via WC online; the digital lab will also be open for online requests for laser cutting and 3D printing services. All shop users will be required to wear a mask upon entry to all of the shop spaces. Entry and exit points will be limited to ensure safe capacity levels in the shop. The shop will close periodically for cleaning and space preparation. 

Printshop and Papermaking

Students, faculty, and staff will be able to reserve equipment, tools, and tech appointments using WC Online. Workstations will be designated to provide 6’ of physical distancing and to limit the number of studio users. Staff hours will be staggered throughout the day to provide more assistance to students. Studio cleaning will happen in the morning before opening, and staff will clean/disinfect throughout the day and at the end of the night. Staff will support students through in-person and online appointments. 

Media Center

The Media Center will be using WC Online as in previous semesters, but also as a reservation system for the Darkrooms. Up to five users at a time will be allowed. The Black and Gray studios will be closed for one hour in the morning and one hour in the evening to accommodate cleaning by Media Center staff and will only be reservable during allotted time periods. 

Animation Studio

The Animation Studio will be rearranged so workstations provide 6’ of physical distancing. Regular cleaning will be done by MC Staff. All equipment will still be available for reservations, however, the use of Personal Proposals for equipment and studio reservations will increase. Media Center staff will do what they can to clean surfaces and equipment, but some electronics cannot be cleaned with 70% alcohol and will be considered high-risk to users.

Service Bureau

Service Bureau public space will be limited to four patrons at a time. SB public laser printers, scanners, and paper trimmers have been moved to an open space in the 225 Design Studio area. Reservations for SB and DPL Epson printing will be required, using our online reservation system. Class visits and demos will be done via video or Google Hangouts. Brief in-person consultations will be allowed though we're encouraging as many patrons as possible to submit their orders via email. For those patrons who cannot come to campus, SB staff will hold virtual meetings and, when needed, ship completed orders.

Academic Services

Academic Services will be open regular hours for students, faculty, and staff. To reduce walk-ins, students and faculty will be able to schedule installation and class support appointments through WC Online. Exhibition spaces may be reserved through email or by phone, referencing maps located at the Academic Services Intranet page. Limited tools and supplies will still be available for students and faculty and will be disinfected, when possible, between users. Academic Services encourages students to email or call with questions to limit the number of walk-ins. When an in-person meeting is required, students should make an appointment.

Help Desk

The Help Desk will be staffed for walk-in assistance during the semester, but will rearrange their front counter area to ensure appropriate physical distancing and limit the number of patrons in the space. Help Desk staff will continue to provide robust remote support, and encourage anyone who needs assistance to contact helpdesk@mcad.edu to make an appointment in advance.

Art Cellar

The Art Cellar will be open to students, faculty, and staff. Hours will be posted closer to the start of the semester. Only five customers will be allowed in the store at a time. Patrons are encouraged to shop alone when possible, respect other customer's personal space, and wear a mask at all times. 

Access to Building Facilities

  • Students, faculty, and staff generally have 24/7 access to the buildings, however specific hours of each service department (3D Shop, Media, Service Bureau, Library) will vary; see the MCAD Intranet for departmental hours.   
  • MCAD Academic Building exterior doors will remain locked 24/7 for the safety and health of the community during the fall. Access to the buildings can be gained through the card-access system.  
  • During the day (6 a.m.-8 p.m.) all card-access doors on Main Building, Morrison, and LA Wing allow access to those with valid MCAD ID.
  • During the night (8 p.m.-6 a.m.) card access is allowed only through Main Building card access doors. Anyone who enters should then “e-sign in” at the Public Safety desk or the mobile reader inside the south door, using the same MCAD ID. 
  • Students, faculty, and staff should only visit MCAD academic buildings if the work they are doing cannot be done remotely. Examples include using the academic support department resources, working in studios, and visiting the Cafe for lunch or dinner, etc.
  • Access to instructional spaces, residences, and office spaces will be limited to students, staff, and faculty. All academic visits to campus must be postponed or shifted to an online format, including guest critiques and lectures.
  • Various campus spaces will have signage indicating the maximum occupancy allowed.
  • The Admissions Office will coordinate all prospective student campus visits following the MCAD’s universal safety guidelines including screening, physical distancing, wearing of masks, and handwashing/use of hand sanitizer. They will also limit the size of visit programs based on the guidance of no more than 10 people indoors. Campus visits and tours will consist of the tour guide, prospective student, and 1-2 guests of the student.
  • For the fall, external groups and organizations will not be allowed to reserve or use campus facilities.  
  • Campus vendors are expected to follow MCAD’s universal guidelines including screening, physical distancing, wearing of masks, and handwashing/use of hand sanitizer.  
  • Mia staff may enter MCAD's buildings in order to visit the Cafe. Entry will need to occur through the lower-level tunnel of Morrison through Mia’s security control office. 
  • Individuals making deliveries (FedEx, U.S. Mail, etc.) may enter campus without screening, as long as they have followed their own companies’ protocols for screening, wearing a mask, and practicing 6' physical distancing.

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Life on Campus

On-Campus Housing

Living on campus will look different than it has in years past. Efforts to ensure the health and safety of everyone in the community will include closely following medical experts’ recommendations. MCAD’s underlying goal is to keep students, staff, and faculty healthy and safe at all times. Housing fees will be prorated on an as-needed basis (e.g. if a student chooses not to return to campus after Thanksgiving).

Move-In

On-campus move-in will be staggered to encourage physical distancing. Move-ins will be scheduled for the week of August 17 and completed by August 23. More information will be sent  later in July specifically to students who will live on campus. For questions or concerns, please email Housing@mcad.edu

MCAD Apartments and Physical Distancing

MCAD apartments will be set up so that every campus resident has their own personal work/sleep/living space in a bedroom or a living room. Bedrooms will not be shared. Residents will be encouraged to avoid their roommate's personal spaces and maintain appropriate distance within their apartments. It is expected that residents will not loiter in common areas, such as corridors, mailbox/foyer area, and laundry room. 

Apartment cleanliness can help stop infections from spreading. Residents are expected to clean their personal sleeping/work/living spaces as well as shared kitchens and bathrooms. Personal items (e.g., cell phones, laptops, and other electronics) should also be kept clean.

Guest Policy

Only building residents or College staff will be permitted to enter the dorm building (exceptions will be made for assistance during move-in). Residents may not enter apartments other than their own and may not host student or non-student guests in their apartment. 

Face Coverings

Residents are required to wear a face covering in all common building areas. Residents are not required to wear a face covering in their own apartment except when interacting with individuals other than their roommate (such as RAs or Facilities staff).

Cleaning and Hygiene

Residents must always wash their hands after being in a public place with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. Additionally, residents should:

  • Cough or sneeze into an elbow or tissue. 
  • Throw used tissues in the trash. 
  • Avoid touching their mouth, nose, and eyes with their hands. 
  • Avoid unnecessary touching of objects such as door handles, countertops, vending machine buttons, etc.

Illness, Isolation, and Quarantine Protocols for Students

The College will follow CDC and MDH guidance regarding isolation and quarantine protocols. Residents who experience COVID-19 symptoms must stay in their living quarters and report to the College if they have COVID-19 symptoms or a positive COVID-19 test result. Residents who test positive for COVID-19 will be moved to a living space identified for isolation purposes. Processes will be in place to provide those quarantined or in isolation with necessary support, including meals.

Additional information regarding health and safety in campus housing will be posted here prior to fall semester move in.

Housing Options

The Whittier neighborhood offers a number of off-campus housing options for students. For those students who need assistance, video chat assistance is available by request. To set up an appointment, email housing_off_campus@mcad.edu using the subject line "Set Up Video Chat Appointment."

To search on their own, students may use the resources posted on MCAD Student Housing for more information.

MCAD Cafe

The MCAD Cafe operations have been modified to meet and exceed all MDH and CDC  guidelines while instituting industry best practices.  

  • MCAD Cafe staff are taking temperature checks, using proper hygiene and staying home when sick.
  • Cafe staff will be following safe food preparation and handling guidelines as recommended by their regulatory bodies and the CDC and MDH.
  • The Cafe staff have instituted increased physical distancing of 6’ where possible in the operations and preparation of food.
  • Cafe employees will wear masks at all times while working and preparing food. Patrons should wear masks at all times except while seated and eating.
  • Disposable service-ware will be offered if eating outside of the Cafe.
  • Cafe regular business hours are Monday-Thursday 8 a.m.-6:30 p.m. and Friday 8 a.m.-4 p.m. These hours are subject to change based on demand.
  • On-campus delivery is also available during all regular hours except 11 a.m.-1 p.m. 
  • Fewer tables and seats are available with more distance between them. They should not be moved or added to any table. 6’ physical distancing is required.
  • Employees are encouraged to use their offices for eating where available. Students who have been assigned a private studio space can use their studio for eating. 
  • The Cafe waiting line has been spaced out with floor marking noting the physical distancing requirements.    
  • A NEW online ordering system is available for pick up in the Cafe. MCAD encourages everyone to use this new feature. More information will be shared at a later date. 
  • A NEW meal card system has been created to be scanned from cell phones. Students, faculty, and staff are encouraged to use this option for a touch-free transaction.  More information will be shared at a later date
  • Specials such as "Free Refill Fridays" and "Bring Your Own Cup, It's a Buck" promotions have been discontinued to minimize cross handling of products. 
  • The number of microwaves has been reduced in order to reduce congestion.  
  • Additional hand-sanitizer stations have been added in the Cafe. Disinfection/cleaning stations are also available if students, faculty, and staff would like to clean their own seating area before use.
  • Increased disinfection of tables, chairs, vending and microwave area will occur.

Fitness Center

  • The Fitness Center is available by appointment only, one student at a time. Staff and faculty use is not available at this time.    
  • Reservations will use the same new online reservation system as classrooms.
  • Students can check the space out for 45-minute sessions, leaving a 15-minute window for the air to purge between users. The exhaust and HVAC system are currently designed to turn over the air 6.5 times per hour.
  • Custodial staff will disinfect the space and equipment overnight on weekdays only. High-touch surfaces such as the entry door knob and light switches will be sanitized more often. 
  • Users will be responsible for cleaning the equipment before and after use. Disinfectant supplies and gloves will be available.  
  • Face coverings are not required while working out in the fitness center since users will be alone. Masks are required when entering and exiting the space.
  • Users will be responsible for using hand sanitizer upon entering and exiting the space.
  • Users will follow all other MCAD policies and universal precautions (stay home if sick, check temperature before entering the building, etc).

Free Shelf

MCAD’s free shelf located in the Main Building will be closed during the 2020/21 school year.

Groceries and Supplies

For more information about local grocery and supply stores, visit our Local Grocery and Supplies page on the intranet.

Medical Care 

Medical assistance and wellness support are available on campus and in the Twin Cities. Free counseling and wellness groups are available with MCAD counselors for undergraduates and MFA students. There are also community mental and physical health services in the neighborhood, including COVID testing. More information can be found on our Counseling and Wellness page on the intranet.

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Continuing Undergraduate Students

COVID-19 Rebate

Since May the MCAD Board of Trustees and the MCAD leadership team have been in many discussions on how to address the financial hardships on students and their families due to the COVID-19 pandemic. After carefully considering a multitude of options, MCAD has decided to offer a one-time COVID-19 tuition rebate. Using an MCAD reserve fund, which is limited and used for major capital projects like the 2017 upgrades on the 2540 Residential Hall, we will give current undergraduate and MFA students a rebate of $1,100 ($550 per semester) as a reduction to tuition costs for full-time enrollment in the academic year August 2020 to May 2021. While reducing tuition was also considered, we were acutely aware that this decision would reduce financial aid awards–significantly impacting our most vulnerable students.

On-Campus Housing Move-In 

On-campus move-in will be staggered to encourage physical distancing. Move-ins will be scheduled for the week of August 17 and completed by August 23. More information will be sent later in July specifically to students who will live on campus. Students should email housing@mcad.edu with questions or concerns. 

Housing fees will be prorated on an as-needed basis (e.g. if a student chooses not to return to campus after Thanksgiving).

“Re-Orientation” 

Reorientation for current students will begin Monday, August 24. Sessions will include virtual and recorded sessions. Students do not need to be on campus to participate. Sessions will cover topics such as academic updates, acclimating to college in a time of COVID, and Title IX updates. More information will be provided later this summer. 

Class Start Date

Classes begin on Monday, August 31, 2020.

Thanksgiving Break, November 25-27

Due to the safety of our community and limiting the spread of COVID-19, students who return home for Thanksgiving break are advised to not return to the MCAD campus for the final two weeks of the term. Faculty will construct their syllabus to allow for the completion of student work remotely during the final two weeks of the term.

Leave of Absence

Admission scholarships have and will continue to follow students even if they take a leave of absence for a semester or year.

Student Work 

Work Study

  • Student work study positions will be rehired or hired on an as-needed basis with approval of the Vice President of that division/area. 
  • Available work study postings will be listed on Paylocity by the first week of fall semester. 
  • MCAD is developing a new, online onboarding process for students.
  • All work study will need to complete the same safety-related training as all staff and faculty on their first day of work. 
  • Cloth masks are required for work study in all public settings (per the Minneapolis Mayor’s Executive Order and following CDC guidance). If they do not have their own, they will be provided one by public safety. 

Casual Labor

  • Casual labor positions will be rehired or hired on an as-needed basis with approval of the Vice President of that division/area. 
  • All casual labor will need to complete the same safety-related training as all staff and faculty on their first day of work. 
  • Cloth masks are required for casual labor in all public settings (per the Minneapolis Mayor’s Executive Order and following CDC guidance). If they do not have their own, they will be provided one by public safety.

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New Undergraduate Students

COVID-19 Rebate

Since May the MCAD Board of Trustees and the MCAD leadership team have been in many discussions on how to address the financial hardships on students and their families due to the COVID-19 pandemic. After carefully considering a multitude of options, MCAD has decided to offer a one-time COVID-19 tuition rebate. Using an MCAD reserve fund, which is limited and used for major capital projects like the 2017 upgrades on the 2540 Residential Hall, we will give current undergraduate and MFA students a rebate of $1,100 ($550 per semester) as a reduction to tuition costs for full-time enrollment in the academic year August 2020 to May 2021. While reducing tuition was also considered, we were acutely aware that this decision would reduce financial aid awards–significantly impacting our most vulnerable students.

On-Campus Housing Move-In 

On-campus move-in will be staggered to encourage physical distancing. Move-ins will be scheduled for the week of August 17 and completed by August 23. More information will be sent  later in July specifically to students who will live on campus. Students should email Housing@mcad.edu with questions or concerns. 

Housing fees will be prorated on an as-needed basis (e.g. if a student chooses not to return to campus after Thanksgiving).

Orientation

Orientation for new students will begin on Monday, August 24. It will include virtual and recorded sessions. Students do not need to be on campus to participate in orientation. There is potential for small break-out sessions with the orientation crew.  Sessions will cover topics such as academics, acclimating to college in a time of COVID, Title IX, and how to succeed at MCAD. More information will be provided later this summer. 

Class Start Date

Classes begin on Monday, August 31, 2020

Thanksgiving Break, November 25-27

Due to the safety of our community and limiting the spread of COVID-19, students who return home for Thanksgiving break are advised to not return to the MCAD campus for the final two weeks of the term. Faculty will construct their syllabus to allow for the completion of student work remotely during the final two weeks of the term.

Admission Deferral/Gap Year

MCAD can defer your admission for up to one year. This means you will not need to reapply to the school if you wish to take time off. In general, deferral requests are discouraged. Please reach out to your admissions counselor by contacting admissions@mcad.edu with specific questions about the process. Students have until August 1 to make their deferral decision. New student housing and tuition deposits will be moved to their chosen deferred semester, either Spring 2021 or Fall 2021.

Student Work 

Work Study

  • Student work study positions will be rehired or hired on an as-needed basis with approval of the Vice President of that division/area. 
  • Available work study postings will be listed on Paylocity by the first week of fall semester. 
  • MCAD is developing a new, online onboarding process for students.
  • All work study will need to complete the same safety-related training as all staff and faculty on their first day of work. 
  • Cloth masks are required for work study in all public settings (per the Minneapolis Mayor’s Executive Order and following CDC guidance). If they do not have their own, they will be provided one by public safety. 

Casual Labor

  • Casual labor positions will be rehired or hired on an as-needed basis with approval of the Vice President of that division/area. 
  • All casual labor will need to complete the same safety-related training as all staff and faculty on their first day of work. 
  • Cloth masks are required for casual labor in all public settings (per the Minneapolis Mayor’s Executive Order and following CDC guidance). If they do not have their own, they will be provided one by public safety.

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MFA Students

COVID-19 Rebate

Since May the MCAD Board of Trustees and the MCAD leadership team have been in many discussions on how to address the financial hardships on students and their families due to the COVID-19 pandemic. After carefully considering a multitude of options, MCAD has decided to offer a one-time COVID-19 tuition rebate. Using an MCAD reserve fund, which is limited and used for major capital projects like the 2017 upgrades on the 2540 Residential Hall, we will give current undergraduate and MFA students a rebate of $1,100 ($550 per semester) as a reduction to tuition costs for full-time enrollment in the academic year August 2020 to May 2021. While reducing tuition was also considered, we were acutely aware that this decision would reduce financial aid awards–significantly impacting our most vulnerable students.

Orientation 

All incoming MFA students began their advising process by filling out a comprehensive survey related to mentor selection, graduate assistantship placement, internships, and more. Orientation details for the class of 2022 will be emailed by August 1. Similarly, there will be an August reorientation scheduled for the class of 2021 to cover the fall semester studio map and the new space-reservation system. 

Class Start Date

Classes begin on Monday, August 31, 2020. All MFA classes are scheduled to be in-person in the MFA Building (separate from the main MCAD buildings). MFA students and MFA faculty have the option to participate remotely if they do not feel safe, but classrooms are reserved for all courses, and all MFA students are scheduled to have access to the MFA studios for making and installing work.

Thanksgiving Break, November 25-27

Due to the safety of our community and limiting the spread of COVID-19, students who return home for Thanksgiving break are advised to not return to the MCAD campus for the final two weeks of the term. Faculty will construct their syllabus to allow for the completion of student work remotely during the final two weeks of the term.

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MA Students

Orientation 

MA Students will participate in the regularly scheduled fully online orientation, which will take place August 17-21. 

Class Start Date

MA classes will begin on Monday, August 24. Add/drop period for MA students, as well as undergraduate students enrolled in MA classes, will be from August 24-August 28. 

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International Students

MCAD is committed to supporting our international students in light of the recent ICE announcement. Since the announced changes to the Student Exchange and Visitor Program (SEVP), MCAD leadership has been working with an SEVP representative who is the advisor to all international student advisors in Minnesota. All international students should remain in contact with MCAD's International and Off-Campus Programs Advisor, Britt Nelson, for further details and updates.

Housing Move-In 

On-campus move-in will be staggered to encourage physical distancing. Move-ins will be scheduled for the week of August 17 and completed by August 23. More information will be sent  later in July specifically to students who will live on campus. For questions or concerns, students should email Housing@mcad.edu

Housing fees will be prorated on an as-needed basis (e.g. if a student chooses not to return to campus after Thanksgiving).

Orientation for New Students

Orientation for new undergraduate and MFA international students is scheduled for August 18 and 19. More information will be emailed later this summer.

“Re-Orientation” 

Reorientation for current students will begin Monday, August 24. Sessions will include virtual and recorded sessions. Students do not need to be on campus to participate. Sessions will cover topics such as academic updates, acclimating to college in a time of COVID, and Title IX updates. More information will be provided later this summer. 

Class Start Date

Classes begin on Monday, August 31, 2020.

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Spring 2020 Graduates

MFA Graduates

Continuing Education Benefit

May 2020 MFA graduates may take two free Continuing Education classes. MFA students enrolled during the Spring 2020 semester, but who have not yet graduated may take one free Continuing Education class. This offer is available for a two-year period. See full details here.

Facilities

MCAD is committed to making up for lost facilities access to graduating MFA students. The details and information will be available in the coming months.

BFA/BA Graduates

Access to Campus Facilities

MCAD is providing dedicated access to campus for May 2020 graduates from August 3-28, 2020 to complete their work for the Commencement Exhibition. This includes temporary access to campus facilities (i.e. Printshop, 3D Shop, Animation Studio, Media Center) and a studio, if needed. Access to MCAD facilities is not dependent upon the assignment of a studio. Students may request to extend their access beyond August. When requesting extended access, students should keep in mind that MCAD need to accommodate demand and physical distancing when new and returning MCAD students arrive on campus.

Graduates who want facility access are required to complete a work proposal that includes:

  • A description of the work planned for the exhibition
  • Whether an on-campus studio is required to complete the work for the exhibition
  • Which campus facilities and resources are needed to complete the work
  • Whether extended access to facilities and/or a studio beyond August 28 is needed to complete the work for the exhibition
  • If on-campus storage space for the work is needed until the fall exhibition.

Once a student’s proposal is submitted, it will be reviewed by the department chair and shared with the academic facilities directors. They will follow up with additional questions or comments.  

Additional information about the commencement exhibition will be sent later this fall. For additional questions, or to access the Work Proposal Form, students should contact Academic Affairs at academic_affairs@mcad.edu

December Commencement

Commencement for December 2019 MA graduates and Spring, Summer, and Fall 2020 graduates will be held virtually on December 11, 2020. Participating in the ceremony is not required for degree completion. All graduating students will have their names read at the ceremony whether they attend or not.

Continuing Education Benefits

May 2020 graduates may take two free Continuing Education classes. Students enrolled during the Spring 2020 semester, but who have not yet graduated may take one free Continuing Education class. This offer is available for a two-year period. See full details here

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Faculty and Staff

As many MCAD employees as possible should continue to work from home until further notice. Governor Tim Walz reinforced this advice for all Minnesotans when he announced May 13, 2020 new executive orders to replace Minnesota’s “Stay at Home” order.

A growing number of employees may need to return to campus (either regularly or intermittently) to effectively complete their work. Some categories of work permitted may include functions that are not otherwise possible if working from home. In particular, returning employees should only include:  

  • Those who would normally engage with students, faculty, staff, or the public, but can work without permitting others into their work space or those that can maintain the 6’ physical distancing.
  • Those who can demonstrate an ability to maintain social/physical distancing, which could include staggered shifts by time or day, relocating some staff, or other solutions.

Employees who were already designated as “Essential On-Campus” employees and have been working on-site can continue to do so without seeking additional approval. It is also important to note that if transmission of the COVID-19 virus becomes significant on campus, the college may determine that employees who have received approval must return to working from home.

Request for Return

Individual employees who meet the criteria above may request a return to their worksite under this Plan. Any requestor must discuss with their direct supervisor before initiating a request. Requests must be submitted to the area Vice President who will approve the request. Once approval is given, the area Vice President should email Public Safety and Human Resources. Supervisors are responsible for ensuring that their current offices allow for physical distancing in shared spaces. Where questions exist, Facilities, the Occupational Health and Safety Coordinator, the Supervisor, and Employee(s) can evaluate the space together, discuss how it is used, and establish protocols for each work environment.  

No member of the College community may return to work on site until they have received the appropriate approval and they have acknowledged their personal responsibility to comply with the Stay Safe Plan for the Workplace (sent via email on June 29, 2020) . Failure to receive approval will result in immediate on-site work stoppage.

Guidelines for Employees who Return to the Workplace

  • Take your temperature in the morning and when you return home from work. Log those results and report any fever to your supervisor. MDH’s self screening checklist can be used for guidance.  
  • Report any exposure to COVID-19 positive individuals, respiratory symptoms, sore throat, or dry cough to your supervisor and Human Resources. Sick employees must stay home.
  • Employees must be at least 6’ apart.
  • Cloth masks are required in all public settings per the Minneapolis Mayor’s Executive Order and following CDC guidance.  
  • In-person meetings are discouraged. Even if employees are on campus, meeting software should be used to gather. If a meeting must be in-person, it must be in a large room with attendees 6’ away from each other and wearing cloth masks until everyone is seated.
  • Employees should wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds prior to entering and after exiting the building.
  • Visitors who are not directly related to the operational needs of the campus are not allowed.

Individual Circumstances

If an individual who has been instructed to return to work on-site has concerns about doing so due to a medical condition or other factors that place them at a higher risk, or if individuals wish to seek ADA reasonable accommodations related to returning to the workplace, they should contact Human Resources to initiate a review to determine any appropriate accommodation(s).

MCAD has leave policies that encourage faculty and staff to stay at home when they are sick, when household members are sick, or when they are required by a healthcare provider to isolate or quarantine themselves or a member of their household. This is covered by MCAD’s existing Earned Sick and Safe Time policies as well as MCAD’s Emergency Sick Time policies which can be found on the MCAD Intranet.

MCAD will implement a policy for informing workers if they have been exposed to a person with COVID-19 at their workplace including quarantine and contact tracing elements. MCAD policy regarding testing, notification, contract tracing, and self-quarantine will reflect the most current guidance from MDH and will be finalized to reflect those recommendations. 


Previous Covid-19 Updates from MCAD