COVID-19 update from App State — March 18, 2022

Posted 03/18/22 at 4:55 p.m.

App State’s progress report to campus provides the latest operational updates, COVID-19 safety protocols and other important information. Please note the status of the coronavirus and variants continues to develop. University COVID-19 safety protocols change, informed by the latest public health data. Always defer to communications with the most recent time and date stamp.

App State COVID-19 Updates

Chancellor Sheri Everts and the university’s COVID-19 response team continue to monitor the COVID-19 situation, and remain in regular contact with state and local public health agencies as well as UNC System leadership.

Chancellor Everts’ March 18 update to campus shared that App State remains attentive to data reported to its COVID-19 dashboard, as well as state and national trends and public health guidance. She also shared that guidance from the federal, state and local levels is now fully aligned: People may choose to wear a face covering at any time, and those with symptoms, a positive test or exposure to someone with COVID-19 should continue to wear a face covering.

As reported on the university’s COVID-19 dashboard, new cases and positive results from on-campus tests continue to decline, and remain very low.

COVID-19 wellness updates and reminders:

In a March 17 press release, Governor Roy Cooper and NCDHHS Secretary Kody Kinsley explained the state’s new Moving Forward Together Plan, the next stage in response to COVID-19. Secretary Kinsley shared that vaccines are still the best protection for ourselves and our communities, and everyone should get vaccinated and boosted as soon as they are eligible.

  • Starting March 23, NCDHHS will update key metrics weekly on its COVID-19 Dashboard using seven new indicators: cases, wastewater testing, hospital admissions, prevalence of variants and covid-like illnesses, booster rates and CDC’s COVID-19 Community Level Metric.

  • Watauga County is currently listed as medium on CDC's COVID-19 Community Levels metric, where recommended mitigation measures are focused on:
    • Vaccination. 
    • Extra precautions for those at high risk for severe disease.
    • Following CDC guidance for isolation and getting tested if you are exposed to COVID-19 or have symptoms. 

Continue protecting yourself and others:

  1. Get vaccinated and boosted to stay up-to-date. Students and employees can still receive a $50 Amazon gift card from Student Health Service for each primary or booster vaccine dose.

  2. If you feel sick, stay home and get tested as soon as possible. If you test positive, self-isolate and follow CDC’s isolation guidelines. Monitor your symptoms, contact your healthcare provider with questions or concerns and seek treatment early if you are at risk for severe illness.

  3. Continue to practice good personal hygiene.

  4. If you are unvaccinated, you no longer need to submit weekly test results; however, free, on-campus, walk-in testing clinics continue weekly for students and employees who would like a test for any reason.

  5. Face coverings are no longer required on campus except where required by federal and state guidelines — including public transportation, such as AppalCART, and health care settings. Campus departments, areas and/or individuals may not require more restrictive measures than those required by the university.

Keep submitting the following to the university:
Vaccination recordsPositive COVID-19 tests collected off campusSelf report illness/exposureCare and concern reports for concerns about others

Mental health and wellness reminders:

March marks two full years of the coronavirus’s impact. Remember your campus mental health and wellness resources.

Resources for students: 

Resources for employees: 

Additional resources:
Mountaineer Food Hub & Free StoreHealth Promotion for Faculty and StaffUniversity Recreation

Additional COVID-19 resources and information:

The university posts the most current COVID-19 safety protocols, procedures and policies to the App State coronavirus website and makes adjustments according to the latest federal, state, local and UNC System guidance. 

  • Don’t see what you’re looking for? Email or call 828-262-2000 for assistance.

The university uses wastewater surveillance testing, as it has since fall 2020, to detect the presence and extent of COVID-19 in residence halls and guide testing and containment measures. 

Remember, contact tracing efforts will focus only on areas of identified need in accordance with current CDC and public health guidance

The university’s COVID-19 response team continues to respond to every report submitted as quickly as possible and prioritizes outreach to individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19.

  • Students: Emergency Management will contact you to provide additional information. Questions? Contact or call 828-262-4008.

  • Faculty and staff: the Office of Human Resources will work with employees and supervisors. Questions? Contact or 828-262-3187. 

App State COVID-19 resources: 
Latest Updates •  COVID-19 VaccinesCOVID-19 Testing and ReportingIsolation and ExposureHealth and SafetyCOVID-19 Dashboard

Additional COVID-19 resources:
COVID-19 Testing at AppHealthCareGet your COVID-19 vaccination recordNorth Carolina’s COVID-19 Information Hub