You are here: American University Coronavirus Community Resource FAQ - Campus Life

FAQ - Campus Life

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Residence Halls

Dining

Student Health

Transportation and Parking


Residence Halls

Do AU students need to leave their residence hall rooms?

Students were instructed to leave campus by Monday, March 23 and return to their permanent addresses for the remainder of the spring semester. With summer classes also being conducted online, students should continue to remain at their permanent addresses for the summer semester. We know some students are not able to return home over the summer months and therefore we are supporting them with summer housing. For additional information, students should visit the OCL summer housing webpage.

Who can remain on campus?

We know some students are not able to return home over the summer months and therefore we are supporting them with summer housing. For additional information, students should visit the OCL summer housing webpage.

How will students who can’t go home be supported in the residence halls?

Support services such as residence hall staff, dining options using EagleBucks at local merchants, and some activities will continue for students who can’t be at home during this time. The following key support and services will be available for students:

Residence Life Support Team

Summer housing residents will be supported by 3 Residence Life team members.  If you have any questions or concerns please email Ashley Boltrushek at ashbolt@american.edu.

On-Site Support

For on-site assistance, please visit the Frequency concierge front desk or call 202-759-9159. The desk is operated 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. 

Emergency Assistance

In the event of an emergency, please go to the concierge front desk or call American University Police Dispatch at 202-885-3636. For non-emergency situations, you may call 202-885-2527.

For the small number of students approved to stay on campus beyond March 23, how often will common bathrooms, laundry rooms, kitchens, and lounges be cleaned? 

All areas of the residence halls continue to be cleaned daily, with special consideration to high-touch areas such as bathrooms, door handles, elevators, handrails, and lobbies.  

For students staying on campus, how should we address health concerns?

Please see the subsection on Student Health below.

How is the university handling mail and packages?

Please review the Campus Services and Hours page for current information on mail and packages.

Dining

What dining services are available on campus with the recent stay-at-home order?

Dining Services have concluded for the Spring Semester. There will be no locations open for the summer. EagleBucks are available for your enjoyment throughout the summer. For a list of merchants currently open, please visit the EagleBucks website.

We will continue to provide dining services updates on a regular basis.

If my meal plan is pro-rated how will the amount be determined? Will I have to request a refund, if not using the meal plan?

Meal Plans will be pro-rated based on the University calendar for Spring 2020 dining days. The Spring 2020 meal plan had a total of 108 dining days.

Refunds are automatically processed when the credit balance appears on the account. For more information on refunds, see the Finances, Refunds, and Financial Aid section.

When will I see the refund on my student account?

To Be Determined by Student Accounts. For more information on refunds, see the Finances, Refunds, and Financial Aid section.

Student Health

What if I am experiencing increased anxiety or stress related to concerns about family who might have been exposed to or affected by COVID-19? What if I notice a student, colleague, or other person who seems to be experiencing related difficulty?

We recognize the emotional stress this situation can cause and our need to support one another. You should encourage anyone having a difficult time with this situation to use resources available from the university. We encourage you to show compassion and support for those most closely impacted, know that COVID-19 is not confined to any one group or community, and maintain our values of inclusivity and compassion.

Students seeking assistance with non-medical concerns about COVID-19 can contact the Office of the Dean of Students or the Counseling Center remotely as in-person counseling services are suspended at this time. Please follow this link to access AUCC triage services. Counseling Center triage hours are 10 a.m. to noon and 1-4 p.m. Monday through Friday. If you require urgent assistance outside of these hours, please contact AUCC ProtoCall Services at 202-885-7979.

International Student and Scholar Services (ISSS) continues to support international students during this difficult time.

Faculty and staff are encouraged to seek support via the Faculty and Staff Assistance Program (FSAP), which makes confidential professional counseling services available to all full-time and part-time faculty and staff members and their immediate families. Contact Dale Rampell at FSAP@american.edu or 202-885-2593.

Faculty and staff concerned about students, should file a CARE report.

What is social distancing and what steps should I be taking now?

Social distancing is a public health practice designed to limit the spread of infectious disease by creating sufficient physical distance between individuals. By decreasing opportunities for close contact among people, we can decrease the potential for disease transmission or spread. Social distancing measures include limiting large groups of people coming together to 10 or less, closing buildings, and canceling public events. This includes civic, cultural, athletic, education, and social gatherings. Other specific steps you should consider include staying at home, maintaining a personal distance between yourself and other people. The recommended minimum distance is six feet. Avoid shaking hands. Importantly, if you are sick or feel unwell, stay home.

I am on campus and may have come in contact with someone who has coronavirus and/or I feel as though I may have coronavirus, what should I do?

The university is following the guidance from U.S. health agencies and continues to implement steps to keep the AU community safe and healthy. The Student Health Center has implemented new policies and procedures with dedicated personnel to handle coronavirus-related concerns.

Symptoms of coronavirus generally include fever over 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit, coughing and/or trouble breathing. If students are experiencing trouble breathing, they should call 3636 if on campus, (or 911 if off-campus), or proceed to the nearest emergency room if that is possible.

If you or a family member has had a potential COVID-19 exposure as outlined by the CDC, please call (202) 885-7777 or email SHCcoronavirus@american.edu for further instructions. Please call ahead of time rather than coming directly to the Student Health Center or making an appointment online. Messages will be checked Monday through Friday between 9:00am and 4:30pm.


If it is after 5 p.m. on a weekday or if it is a weekend, students can direct questions to the Nurse Advice line at 833-381-8545.

I am off-campus, may I use my school insurance?

Yes. Information about AU’s student health insurance is available on the Student Health Center site.  Please also take a moment to read CareFirst’s COVID-19 Information page, including the message from president & CEO of CareFirst Blue Cross Blue Shield, Brian D. Pieninck about changes that have been made to make healthcare easier and more accessible to its members.

I want to know more about the positive cases among members of the AU community, what can you share? Why can’t you tell me where they are/were?

We are protecting the privacy and medical information of our community members who have tested positive for COVID-19. While it is understandable to question if you have come into contact with someone who has a confirmed case, AU’s Medical Director, Dr. David S. Reitman reminds us in his message to the AU community on March 20, that there are two important things to remember. First, the public health departments will determine who needs to be contacted (for contact tracing) based on their investigation of each case. Second, with ongoing community spread of COVID-19 around the region, country, and world, the most important thing for all of us to do is practice good health hygiene and social distancing and follow the guidance from U.S. and local health authorities. If you have been in high risk countries or areas of the U.S., be vigilant about following CDC guidance for monitoring your health and self-isolating. 

It’s also important to remember that confirmed cases do not always indicate active infections. In fact, many individuals who have tested positive have already recovered or are in the process of recovering.

Please keep these things in mind and help support both the individuals who have COVID-19 and our entire community.

Transportation and Parking

Will the university shuttle continue to operate?

AU’s shuttle service is currently operatingon an adjusted schedule. Please continue to monitor the schedule as the service may be reduced in the coming weeks.

What parking restrictions are in effect on and off campus?

Enforcement of on-campus parking restrictions is suspended until at least April 5 for students, faculty, and staff. Individuals will be able to park in general parking areas on campus without a permit or paying the daily fee through April 5. However, parking in residential neighborhoods will still be considered in violation of our Good Neighbor Parking Policy. You can find more information on the parking and commuter services site.