Spanish Mission architecture. Large expanses of green. Blooming bougainvillea.
At first glance, Chaminade doesn’t appear to have changed much in the last several months. But a closer look reveals a myriad of upgrades—all aimed at keeping people safe.
In classrooms and other shared spaces, seating is kept 6 feet apart and markings on the floor offer a guide for how to space out. Signage posted all over campus reminds everyone to wear a mask and practice social distancing. At strategic locations, you’ll find sanitation stations and no-contact thermometers. And Chaminade’s maintenance team is busy throughout the day, keeping high-traffic areas and frequent touchpoints sanitized and well-cleaned.
It’s all part of the university’s commitment to ensuring a safe and healthy environment for everyone—and is thanks to a large team of Chaminade faculty and staff who worked tirelessly to develop and execute a campus reopening plan that put a priority on community wellbeing.
The university has already taken some major steps in that plan.
Like most campuses around the country and in Hawaii, Chaminade went fully to online instruction in March amid “stay-at-home” orders and a push to flatten the coronavirus infection curve. Shortly after closing campus, however, Chaminade got to work to craft a strategy—and a timeline—for safely welcoming people back.
Staff returned first—in June. Then, on July 6, in-person graduate instruction resumed. Undergraduate and Doctor of Clinical Psychology students come back to campus for the fall Aug. 24.
A COVID-19 task force was convened to gather data-informed safety protocols locally and nationally, determine what needed to be done—and then figure out how to do it. They tackled a host of projects in a short period, including a campus-wide effort to reconfigure classrooms, residence halls and common areas to accommodate social distancing requirements.
The university also focused on other areas, including by posting bold signage with health reminders and communicating regularly with members of the Chaminade ‘ohana to keep them up to date with what was going on. The appeal to everyone: when you’re on campus, you’ll need to do your part to keep it safe by wearing a mask and practicing social distancing.
As more people have returned, it’s a message that has resonated across a university community that prides itself on a mission of service to others. Everyone understands they share the responsibility of creating a safe campus and that their actions protect not only themselves but other members of the Silversword ‘ohana—and their family members and friends, too.