Updated March 30, 2021

Our goal in outlining specific policies for all student organizations at JMU is to promote the health and safety of everyone in the JMU community and to limit the spread of COVID-19, while maintaining on campus operations. All students must abide by the Stop the Spread Agreement, which was signed prior to returning to campus. In addition, student organizations should also uphold the protocol outlined in this document. This document will remain in effect until rescinded in writing via the JMU Stop the Spread and the Student Life websites.

Starting April 1st, in compliance with the more recent Governor’s Order concerning Social Gatherings, student organizations will be able to host in-person, on-campus activities, events, and meetings with 50 people inside, 100 people outside.   

Space should be reserved through your Nuts & Bolts Representative. The capacity listed on rooms is the maximum capacity for the space to maintain distancing. Regardless of the space reserved, your activity, event, or meeting should not exceed 50 people (indoors) or the listed maximum capacity of the space, whichever is LESS. Please respect these parameters for the safety of your members and the larger JMU Community.  

Off-campus activities and events, excluding approved service, are expected to continue following the Stop The Spread Agreement, capping attendance at functions to 10 people for the semester.  

  • Approved Community Service using the Student Organizations Volunteer Agreementmay follow the Current Governor’s Orders for Social Gatherings to allow for safe opportunities to work with community partners. 

Virtual Activity

Students have access to Zoom and WebEx with their university credentials for large meetings and no time restrictions. We recommend using a Virtual platform when any in-person activity, event, or meeting is infeasible or may become unsafe.

In-Person Events

Expectations for orgs at every in-person activity, event, and meeting:  

  • Masks worn correctly and constantly. 
  • Physical distancing maintained (6ft). 
  • Max occupancy following expectations above, and: 
    • UREC spaces will follow the current Governor’s Order concerning Gyms and Fitness Centers. 
    • On-campus room reservations will be accepted with room set-ups selected from the options offered and are expected to remain as is (no moving of furniture) to maintain physical distancing. 
    • Religious services and worship will be allowed up to 50% of space capacity, depending on safe, physical distancing abilities in the space.  
    • Large, outdoor events that would approach the threshold the current outdoor capacity following the Governor’s Orders for Social Gatherings are subject to approval.  
    • Performance events must follow the appropriate guidelines and set-up requirements. 
    • Free-flowing events, such as fairs and other “open moving” opportunities, would not be approved as physical distancing cannot be maintained. 
  • Attendance must be taken for contact tracing purposes –we encourage students to ask people to sign up ahead of time to ensure numbers do not go above appropriate levels. 
  • No one with COVID-19, a known recent exposure to COVID-19, or having symptoms of COVID-19 is permitted at any in-person events, including any individual in Quarantine or Isolation.  
  • LiveSafe must be checked before attendees are permitted into the space.  
  • No alcohol is permitted at any event and those that are intoxicated are not allowed to enter/join. 
  • No food or drink should be allowed at the event or provided by the organization during the event, unless catered and overseen by Aramark. Personal water bottles are acceptable.  
  • Virtual offerings are preferred and should be offered as an option in conjunction with any in-person event. 
  • Organizations should know and follow any other expectations set by their Inter/National Governing Bodies, following the stricter of expectations when there is a difference with JMU guidelines.  

A virtual event should replace any in-person activity, event, or meeting if the organization:  

  • Is unable to reserve an adequate space for physical distancing for the number of people expected to attend.
  • Expects more people to attend than the Current Governor’s Orders for Social Gatherings or 30% capacity of the space (whichever is LESS).
  • Expects trouble enforcing masks.
  • Expects issues tracking attendance.
  • Has other concerns not listed that may create an unsafe environment for attendees.

Addressing the Use of the LiveSafe App and Mask Wearing

It is recommended that student organization leaders reinforce the requirements regarding the LiveSafe app and wearing a mask to students attending their meetings and events.  

Students addressing the use of the LiveSafe app or wearing a mask with another student: 

  • Engage them with kindness and patience. Do not make assumptions about why they did not immediately present the green check to you or are not wearing a mask. 
  • Remind them of the guidelines and expectations they have regarding the LiveSafe app and wearing a mask as a member of the JMU community.  
  • Discuss the importance that every member of the JMU community abide by these guidelines and expectations in order to keep our campus healthy and safe. 
  • Provide them with an opportunity to fill out the LiveSafe app’s health check at that time and/or to go get a mask and come back.  

If the student complies: 

  • Thank them for helping the JMU community stay healthy and safe. 
  • Follow-up through email to offer gratitude and reminders about the importance of future adherence to follow the guidelines and expectations outlined. 

If the student does not comply: 

  • Ask them to leave your meeting or event. Encourage them to participate virtually. 
  • If the student still has not complied, let the student know that you would really appreciate their compliance with your request, so you do not have to take any further action. 
  • If these conversations do not work, you may contact the JMU Police (540-568-6911) immediately if they will not leave your meeting or event.  
  • Note: JMU Police should not be contacted without attempting to engage in a conversation first unless other circumstances exist that would make it unsafe for you to have these conversations. 
  • Discuss additional options with your advisor, Student Activities and Involvement, UREC, CMSS and/or Fraternity and Sorority Life staff. 

Off Campus/Travel

Off-Campus activities, events, and meetings are allowed following the in-person guidelines above, following the Stop the Spread Agreement of 10 people max (with an exception for approved community service), and with the following additional expectations:   

  • Off-Campus events should not be held outside of the City of Harrisonburg or Rockingham County. Travel outside of the city/county must be approved. 
    • When asking for travel approval outside of Rockingham County, consider:
      • Safety precautions of travel to, from, and at the activity.
      • As current restrictions and expectations vary from state to state, no out of state travel will be approved for the safety of all organization members.
    • Community Service will only be approved based on the safety of members and the community using the Student Organizations Volunteer Agreement. 
    • No overnight activities (such as retreats or competitions) will be permitted as proper guidelines cannot be maintained. 

Off Campus Housing

If your organization has an off-campus residence that is generally recognized/associated as belonging to your organization, we recommend the following policies from the Stop the Spread Agreement.

  1. No non-residents allowed in the facility
  2. Masks required in all common spaces
  3. Reduced seating in all common areas (lounges, kitchens etc.)

Off-Campus residences with large numbers of residents have the potential to become infection “hot spots” and anything students can do to mitigate this risk will have long-lasting positive effects on campus activities.

Group Conduct Violations

  1. Organizations must not organize or endorse events that break current recommendations for in-person events as set forth by the City of Harrisonburg, the Governor of Virginia, or the policies outlined in this document.
  2. These COVID-19 policies will be strictly enforced, as alleged violations of noncompliance, with penalties up to and including revoking university recognition of the organization.
  3. Any student organization that has oversight from an Inter/National Governing Body/Organization will be expected to follow any additional policies put in place by their Inter/National organization.
  4. Any violations of JMU policy will result in Inter/National Organization notification.
  5. The University will use the ‘Reasonable Person’ standard: If a reasonable person would associate the gathering with your organization, we consider it an organization event and will proceed with the Group Conduct violation process.

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