Research Guidelines

Guiding Principles

  • Wilson College of Textiles’ policies and protocols for responding to the COVID-19 pandemic will be rooted in safety for the entire college community.
  • The primary goals for Wilson College’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic are first to protect our community, and then continue the college mission of education, research and service.
  • Wilson College’s plans will also be aligned and consistent with the policies, rules and regulations of the university and with local orders and ordinances of the City of Raleigh and Wake County, as well as the State of North Carolina’s Phased Reopening Model. Wilson College’s plans will also follow recommendations from the federal government (Opening Guidelines), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and N.C. Department of Public Health.
  • Our knowledge and understanding of the COVID-19 virus continues to evolve, and our policies and plans will be updated appropriately as more information becomes available.
  • Link to One-Page Poster: Return to Textiles Complex Research Guidelines

Workplace Expectations

  • In the initial phase of the restart research campaign, only approved faculty, staff and graduate students can return to the Textiles Complex for on-campus work.
  • Work that can be done remotely should continue to be done remotely.
  • All faculty, staff and students must fully comply with the policies, protocols and guidelines outlined in this document as part of Wilson College’s Workplace Expectations and Guidelines.
  • Failure to do so will result in corrective action.

Individuals with Higher Risk or Other Concerns

  • According to the CDC, individuals with certain conditions may have a higher risk for COVID-19 infection. Those conditions may include:
    • Older adults (65 years and older)
    • People with HIV
    • Asthma (moderate-to-severe)
    • Chronic lung disease
    • Diabetes
    • Serious heart conditions
    • Chronic kidney disease being treated with dialysis
    • Severe obesity
    • Being immunocompromised
  • Faculty, staff and students who have been allowed to return to work on-site and have concerns about doing so due to a medical condition that places them in a higher risk group, are pregnant or wish to seek Reasonable Accommodations related to Returning to the Workplace should contact College Human Resources.

At Home Before You Leave For Work

Faculty, staff and students who have been instructed to return to the workplace must conduct symptom monitoring every day before reporting to work. You must be free of ANY symptoms potentially related to COVID-19 or have had evaluation and clearance by your healthcare provider to be eligible to report to work.

  1. Monitor yourself for common respiratory symptoms of COVID-19, which includes fever, cough, shortness of breath, chills and muscle pain. Other symptoms can include sore throat, new loss of taste or smell, vomiting or diarrhea.
  2. Check your temperature once a day. If your temperature is equal to or greater than 100.4°F or 38°C, or if you experience an increase in temperature of 1 degree centigrade or 2 degrees Fahrenheit, wait 10 minutes and repeat the temperature measurement.
  3. If you have any symptoms or a repeatable increase in body temperature, you must call your healthcare provider for assessment of symptoms and COVID-19 testing. We are encouraging all to self-report either positive COVID-19 testing results or a diagnosis of COVID-19 by your healthcare provider by using the self-report form.
  4. If you live with a person with a confirmed laboratory test for COVID-19 or a person with respiratory symptoms, please contact the PACK Planning Team prior to coming to the college and follow their instructions.
  5. If you have visited high-transmission settings (i.e., hospitals, nursing homes), or have engaged in high-risk activities such as participation in group activities (more than 20 people), check your temperature twice a day, following the direction above in Item 2.
  6. Please remember, your personal behavior and risk-exposure during your time away from the Textiles Complex impacts everyone when you return to work or study on campus. Please follow good practices – if you are safe, then we are all safe.
  7. Travel. No university-related travel is authorized outside of North Carolina. Please avoid personal travel at this time unless essential. If you must travel, then please follow the guidelines on the CDC website.

Prior to Entering the Building

  1. Minimize the number of personal items you bring into the Textiles Complex.
  1. Clean and disinfect highly-touched personal items such as phone screens with alcohol or Clorox disinfectant wipes.
  1. Put on your mask prior to entering the building.
  1. As soon as you enter the building, wash your hands with soap and water immediately before proceeding to your lab.

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) Requirements Overview

  1. This guideline is supplemental to existing PPE requirements in your work areas. If you have existing PPE protocols that require a higher level of protection, please adhere to those protocols in addition to those listed in this document.
  2. All members of the Wilson College community should continue to practice social distancing, maintaining a minimum of 6 feet when interacting with others whenever possible. Interactions where social distancing is not possible will not be permitted without prior approval of the PACK Planning Team.

PPE Requirements – Hand Hygiene

Hand hygiene should be maintained by effective and frequent hand washing and hand sanitizing.

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds and whenever your hands are soiled.
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 70% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.
  • We recommend frequent hand washing/sanitizing (at least every hour) and especially after touching common use items such as doorknobs, light switches, handrails, phones, keyboards, mouse, carts, etc.
  • Please avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth throughout your day.

PPE Requirements – Face Masks

  • Until further notice, everyone is required to wear face masks while in the Textiles Complex.
    • Effective July 1 and throughout at least the fall 2020 semester, face coverings will be required to be worn by students, faculty, staff and visitors in all NC State buildings and in all university programs held in nonuniversity buildings. Additional information on this can be found here.
    • Spread of the COVID-19 virus is still thought to be primarily person-to-person, through respiratory droplets from an infected person; or from those who may be asymptomatic.https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/prevention.html.
    • Wear your mask even if you are alone in the lab.
    • Individuals who cannot wear face masks due to health reasons can contact College Human Resources.
  • The Wilson College will provide face masks to all individuals who are returning to the Textiles Complex.
  • No cloth masks or masks with exhaustion valves are allowed.

Proper Handling of Face Masks

  1. Before donning your mask, wash your hands with soap and water or use alcohol-based hand sanitizer of at least 70%. Hand washing is required if your hands are soiled.
  2. Snugly fit the mask over your nose and mouth, and avoid touching the inside of the mask.
  3. The mask should be kept in place while inside the building.
  4. Remove the mask, sanitize your hands in the designated sanitizer stations and leave the building immediately.
  5. Do not touch the inside of the mask; if it is foldable, keep the inside of the mask folded to the inside.
  6. Layering fabric is available at the designated places in the Textiles Complex for use in masks with pockets. The CDC has posted more detailed information regarding cloth face masks, laundering and instructions for making them.https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/prevent-getting-sick/diy-cloth-face-coverings.html

U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC): Pandemic Preparedness in the Workplace and the Americans with Disabilities Act https://www.eeoc.gov/laws/guidance/pandemic-preparedness-workplace-and-americans-disabilities-act

Additional Information About and How to Clean Face Masks

Personal use masks (washable)

As a public service, NC State has a program to provide personal use masks to its on-campus staff for use while working. Although NC State has significantly reduced its on-campus operations, mandatory on-campus personnel continue performing public-facing and other critical university services.

Recent medical information indicates that people may be infectious before having symptoms of COVID-19. The mask that is provided is neither a surgical medical grade mask nor a higher level form fitted respirator. For this reason, this mask should not be used for medical purposes or where a respirator is needed.

The mask is an addition to (and not a substitution for) physical distancing, hand hygiene and staying home when sick. Wearing a personal use mask can provide an extra level of protection for staff, faculty and students from the possibility that the wearer may be infectious even if not symptomatic. NC State employees are expected to wear masks while on campus.

In a tiered method, beginning with public-facing employees, masks are available to staff on campus.

At this time, you are receiving a reusable mask that is white, with 10-12 pleats and ear loops (see picture).

  • Wear it for at least one shift, then wash before wearing again
  • Gently hand wash with warm, soapy water and rinse well
  • Hang to air dry overnight, between wears
  • Wash and rewear for up to 14 days unless damaged
  • Request new masks after 14 days or if damaged

After 14 days or if damaged, you can request new masks by completing theGoogle Form. Please allow us three working days to prepare the new masks for you.

In order to preserve our supply, please do not take additional masks home for personal or family use. As a reminder and consistent with our previous guidance, employees who are working on site should continue social distancing measures and proper hand hygiene. Employees who are sick should not come to work.

Please direct any questions you may have to your supervisor.

PPE Requirements – Gloves

  • Gloves are commonly used at the Textiles Complex for protective measures associated with your specialty area, but not associated with the COVID-19 virus.
  • It is important to remember that wearing gloves does provide some isolation of your skin from contaminated work surfaces or patients, but does not protect work surfaces from the virus on the outside of your gloves.
  • Remove gloves when you leave your work area or laboratory, and wash and sanitize your hands.

PPE Requirements – Workplace Hygiene

  • NC State University Housekeeping teams have enhanced their daily sanitizing of surfaces and objects that are touched often such as light switches, phones, desks, countertops, faucet handles, doorknobs, rails, etc. in common areas across campus. Standard procedures call for disinfecting specific areas on campus, such as bathrooms.
  • Make sure your workplaces are clean and hygienic.
  • For shared equipment, clean, wipe or spray the surfaces with alcohol or Clorox disinfectants. If you need clean, wipe, or spray the surfaces, but do not have alcohol or Clorox disinfectants, contact the PACK Planning Team.
  • If surfaces or objects are soiled with body fluids or blood, secure the area and alert the University by dialing University Police at 919-515-3000.

Social Distancing

  • Keeping space between you and others is one of the best tools we have to avoid being exposed to the COVID-19 virus and slowing its spread. Since people can spread the virus before they know they are sick, it is important to stay away from others when possible, even if you have no symptoms. Social distancing is important for everyone, especially to help protect people who are at higher risk of getting very sick.
  • Faculty, staff and students in the Textile Complex on-site must follow these social distancing practices:
    1. Stay at least 6 feet from other people at all times,
    2. Stay in a minimum of 200 sq ft of space per occupant.

Guidelines for Specific Workplace Scenarios

  • Using Laboratories: Use of laboratories should be limited to at least 200 sq. ft. per person at any given time. Each laboratory is only approved for no more than 30% of normal operation capacity.
  • Using Offices: The initial phase of restarting research campaign is limited to laboratory research. Faculty should have no office hours at this time.
  • Using Conference Rooms: Convening in groups increases the risk of viral transmission, and hence in-person meetings in offices or conference rooms are not permitted at this time. All meetings should be held using the virtual collaboration tools (e.g., Zoom, Google Meet, telephone, etc.).
  • Using Restrooms: Use of restrooms should be limited to one person per restroom at a time. Wash your hands thoroughly afterward to reduce the potential transmission of the virus and use a paper towel on the door handle or use the foot opener if one is installed.
  • Using Elevators: No more than one person may enter an elevator at a time, so please use the stairs whenever possible. If you are using the elevator, wear your mask avoid touching the elevator buttons with your exposed hand/fingers, if possible. Wash your hands or use alcohol-based hand sanitizers with greater than 70% alcohol the preferred form of hand hygiene in healthcare settings upon departing the elevator.

Enter / Exit Control

  • Entry to the Textiles Complex will be regulated and monitored. Your University ID Card is required for entry to the building.
  • You may not hold or prop open exterior doors for any other person.
  • Visitors, trainees, guests, pets and family are not allowed in the Textiles Complex during this time.

Reporting Violations

  • Looking after ourselves and each other is vital for our successful and sustained return to campus.
  • Violation of these guidelines will result in a warning or immediate revocation of building access privileges and potentially other corrective action, depending on the nature of the violation.
    • First offense – Will be notified of the warning
    • Second offense – Will be loss of access privileges for one week
    • Additional offenses – Will be loss of access privileges for three weeks
  • Anyone can report any violation by using the Protect The Pack form.
  • Alternatively, anyone can also use the university’s Ethics Point hotline for anonymous reporting of breaches of University research restart guidelines.

Tracking On-Site Hours

You have been designated as Mandatory on-site employees. Mandatory defined as an employee who is directed by their supervisor to work on specific dates and times at a designated university worksite and in most circumstances are not eligible for telework options during those specific dates and times. Employees’ residences and other alternative work locations are not considered designated university worksites.

All mandatory on-site employees (EHRA, SHRA, Temps, Student Workers, Post Docs and student researchers) must report the hours worked onsite weekly on this form.Please use the form to enter the number of hours worked on site each day. Please submit this form by 11:59 p.m. each Friday.

This is a reporting requirement for ALL mandatory employees designated to work on-site as requested by The University of North Carolina System.

***This does not replace Wolftime for those who are paid on an hourly basis***