Rock Valley College

FAQs on COVID-19

updated 3/25/2020 at 5:19pm

The College will continue to provide updates regarding how the College is monitoring the COVID-19 outbreak. RVC Police Chief Jenks and the College’s Incident Response Team are monitoring the situation and are in daily contact with the Winnebago County Health Department and area first responder agencies.

This FAQ addresses some common questions we have been receiving from employees and students. Students and employees can send questions to rvc-publicrelations@rockvalleycollege.edu.   The FAQ will continue to be updated as the College receives additional information. Please check back frequently and monitor this FAQ and your College-issued RVC email.

FAQ for Students

 

Yes!

Tutors & Writing Coaches

 

Available online through Upswing 24/7 

Meet online with a RVC tutor, RVC Writing Center coach or an Upswing tutor who specializes in your subject/course. For a RVC tutor or RVC Writing Center coach, search by tutor/coach name or search by the course you are enrolled in. To meet with a RVC Writing Center coach about a paper or written assignment that is not for an English class, use the search words – Writing Center.

Upload a Written Assignment for a RVC Writing Center coach or an Upswing writing tutor to review for you. Keep in mind, on average, that your paper will be returned to you with feedback within 48 hours.

Visit the online Writing Lab to learn step-by-step how to tackle and master the writing process.

Format citations in MLA and APA for your Works Cited or Reference List page with a super-fast, online citation engine.

Upswing How to Videos:

Help using Upswing:

Contact RVC: c.griesbach@rockalleycollege.edu or rvc-tutoring@rockvalleycollege.edu 

Contact Upswing: speak@upswing.io

 

Librarians & Research Help

 

Don't exactly know what you need for your assignment or where to find it? A librarian can help! 

Librarians are available online by CHAT through the library web page, Monday - Friday, 10am - 12pm and 3pm - 5pm.

To chat, look for the green "Chat now" button. You may also email RVC-LibRef@rockvalleycollege.edu, or call (815) 921-4619 to leave a message for a librarian to return your call.

Databases, Ebooks, and LibGuides are all available at a distance. You may be asked to sign in with your RVC ID number and password. 

Guides contain resources compiled by librarians to help you find information. Within a LibGuide you may find a list of databases, tutorials, Ebooks, and research tips pertinent to the subject or topic it covers. 

For more information on library support for online learning, please visit our Library Distance Learning Service page. 

If you have additional questions about physical materials, current checkouts, Interlibrary Loans, or other general library questions, please email S.Nissen@rockvalleycollege.eduor call (815) 921-4615 to leave a message. 

 

Yes.  Due to the evolving and uncertain circumstances surrounding the COVID-19 situation, all summer courses currently being offered are online only. Please check back periodically for any changes to course offerings.

Registration will open as planned on March 24 at 9 p.m. via Online Services

All RVC credit classes have been on extended spring break through the week of March 16. Beginning March 23, the College will be transitioning to online and alternative instructional delivery until further notice.

Non-credit classes and programs (including Adult Education, Community and Continuing Education, Center for Learning in Retirement, Cold Forming Training, TechWorks, and Truck Driver Training) have been suspended until further notice. There will be no delivery of non-credit instruction through live, online, or alternative means.. 

As Rock Valley Colleges transitions to online learning and alternative instructional delivery, we understand that there are many of you who are concerned with this change. Please know that we are working very hard to provide you with training and information to help you through this time.

The link provided in this email will give you access to a specialized course in EAGLE to help you succeed in your courses . There are videos and resources to serve as guides through this transition. Please reach out to your instructor for help and, if they cannot provide you with assistance, they can direct you to someone who can. 

We are here for you.

https://rvceagle.instructure.com/courses/22382

If you are not familiar with EAGLE, we have created a quick tutorial to help you learn how. 

All services are still operational and ready to assist students.

Here is a list of all contact information for the office you may need (we recommend sending an e-mail to the departments for a quicker reply):

Academic and Transfer Advising: RVC-ATA@rockvalleycollege.edu                                 

Records and Registration: RVC-Records@rockvalleycollege.edu

Disability Support Services: RVC-DisabilityServices@rockvalleycollege.edu                            

Financial Aid: RVC-FIA@rockvalleycollege.edu

Accounts Receivable/Payment Center: RVC-AR@rockvalleycollege.edu

Career Services and Career Advising: RVC-Careerservices@rockvalleycollege.edu               

TRIO: RVC-Trio@rockvalleycollege.edu

 

I need to set up an appointment with someone, how can I do that?

We are currently using Zoom and an online chat service to help students.  Contact the appropriate office listed above to set up an appointment and we will reach out to you after to let you know the next steps to connect virtually.

 

I don’t know who to contact or can I contact someone from student services instantly?

Click on the “Support Online” icon on the RVC website (bottom right of your screen):

Online Chat

We are currently staffing the online support from 8:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m. to assist student general questions or help get you connected to the correct college personnel. 

 

What if I need help after 6:00 p.m. or the office I need is not listed above?

Click on the icon you see after hours:

Chat Offline

Leave us a message and well will forward it to the correct department. 

 

How can I turn in my financial aid paper work?

You can e-mail the forms to RVC-FIA@rockvalleycollege.edu or use the drop box that is located outside of the Student Center.

 

How can I withdraw from a class?

Normally you would have to come into the records office, but at this time you can receive help by sending an e-mail from your student e-mail address to RVC-Records@rockvalleycollege.edu for help with this process?

 

If you’re having any issues at all please reach out to the Dean of Students:

Terrica Huntley
Phone: 815-921-4284
E-mail: T.Huntley@rockvalleycollege.edu

Yes. Personal and Success Counseling will continue to provide mental health and academic support during this time.

Andrea McCauley, RVC's Personal & Success Counselor, can be reached via email at a.mccauley@rockvalleycollege.edu, by phone (815) 921-4105 (messages will be checked regularly throughout the day), and by messaging through Eagle/Canvas App (select Course: RVC Community Group and send to: Andrea McCauley.)

For life threatening/severe emergencies, please call 911, or go to the nearest emergency department.

While the Bookstore is not open for face-to-face transactions, the store will continue serving customers through the Boiokstore website, phone (815-921-1680), and email.  The Bookstore is currently offering free UPS ground shipping for online orders.  Also, Barnes & Noble College has partnered with VitalSource to provide ebooks made available through some of the publishers free of charge. This does not include courseware or books from all publishers. 

How do I access VitalSource Helps content?

To get started, visit bookshelf.vitalsource.com. Before you begin searching for and reading course materials, you will need to log in to an existing Bookshelf account with your institution-provided email address or create a new account. It is important to note that, while you may use Bookshelf today as part of an Inclusive Access program, your account may not be linked to your institution provided email address. To access VitalSource Helps content, you must use your institution-provided email address.
 

For students and instructors accessing Bookshelf for the first time:

Here are instructions on creating a Bookshelf account. Once you create an account with an institution-provided email address, log in and click on the “Explore” tab in the upper left corner of the screen.
 

For students and instructors with existing Bookshelf accounts linked to their institution-provided email address:

Students and instructors with existing Bookshelf accounts linked to their institution-provided email address will see a new tab called “Explore.” This tab provides access to the freely-available ebooks.

From Comcast's web resources:

Comcast is taking steps to implement the following new policies for the next 60 days, and other important initiatives:

  • Xfinity WiFi Free For Everyone: Xfinity WiFi hotspots across the country will be available to anyone who needs them for free – including non-Xfinity Internet subscribers. For a map of Xfinity WiFi hotspots, visit www.xfinity.com/wifi. Once at a hotspot, consumers should select the “xfinitywifi” network name in the list of available hotspots and then launch a browser.
     
  • Pausing Our Data Plan: With so many people working and educating from home, we want our customers to access the internet without thinking about data plans. While the vast majority of our customers do not come close to using 1TB of data in a month, we are pausing our data plans for 60 days giving all customers Unlimited data for no additional charge.
     
  • No Disconnects or Late Fees: We will not disconnect a customer’s internet service or assess late fees if they contact us and let us know that they can’t pay their bills during this period. Our care teams will be available to offer flexible payment options and can help find other solutions.
     
  • Internet Essentials Free to New Customers: As announced yesterday, it’s even easier for low-income families who live in a Comcast service area to sign-up for Internet Essentials, the nation’s largest and most comprehensive broadband adoption program. New customers will receive 60 days of complimentary Internet Essentials service, which is normally available to all qualified low-income households for $9.95/month. Additionally, for all new and existing Internet Essentials customers, the speed of the program’s Internet service was increased to 25 Mbps downstream and 3 Mbps upstream. That increase will go into effect for no additional fee and it will become the new base speed for the program going forward.
     
  • News, Information and Educational Content on X1: For those with school-age students at home, we’ve created new educational collections for all grade levels in partnership with Common Sense Media. Just say “education” into your X1 or Flex voice remote. To help keep customers informed, we also have created a collection of the most current news and information on Coronavirus. Just say “Coronavirus” into your X1 or Flex voice remote.
     
  • 24x7 Network Monitoring: Underpinning all of these efforts, Comcast’s technology and engineering teams will continue to work tirelessly to support our network operations. We engineer our network capacity to handle spikes and shifts in usage patterns, and continuously test, monitor and enhance our systems and network to ensure they are ready to support customer usage. Our engineers and technicians staff our network operations centers 24/7 to ensure network performance and reliability. We are monitoring network usage and watching the load on the network both nationally and locally, and to date it is performing well.
     

Xfinity Resources

 

From Charter's website:

In an effort to ensure Americans have necessary access to online resources, qualifying households with students can get 60 days of FREE access with a Spectrum Internet account.

  • Available for households with K-12 or college students
  • Limited to new accounts who do not already have a Spectrum Internet subscription
  • Installation fees will be waived

In addition, Spectrum WiFi hotspots will be open for public use.

Call  1-844-579-3743  to enroll.

The National Junior College Athletic Association (NJCAA) has canceled all spring competition effective March 16. Spring competition includes all practices, regular season, postseason, and national championship play. For RVC, this impacts baseball and softball.

Yes. Student workers who work remotely should report their actual time worked to their supervisor and their supervisor will report actual hours worked to Amanda Berkman in Payroll. If you cannot work remotely, you will continue to get paid based on your normal work schedule up to the end of this semester.

 

 

FAQ for Employees

 

Yes. All employees will continue to be paid according to their association’s Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) or as normal for non-CBA personnel.

Your check will be mailed via the US Postal Service to the address on file with the College. All attempts will be made to have your check delivered to you by the pay date.

No. All benefits remain intact for all employees.

Yes. Student workers who work remotely should report their actual time worked to their supervisor and their supervisor will report actual hours worked to Amanda Berkman in Payroll. If you cannot work remotely, you will continue to get paid based on your normal work schedule up to the end of this semester.

Only authorized personnel as identified by the Incident Response Team will be allowed on campus. Access to exterior doors will be removed for remote and non-essential personnel. If there are special circumstances that require you to return to campus, please contact your supervisor.  Supervisors should notify RVC Police Department at 815-921-4357 if they have asked any non-essential employees to report to campus so RVCPD can restore access as needed for those employees.

All departments are developing department-specific work-from-home plans for employees in each department who have been identified as non-essential. Employees are expected to work on assigned tasks from their direct supervisor and are required to check email and voicemail messages every hour during normal business hours (8am-5pm, M-F) to meet the needs of our students and community.

Arrangements are being made with all supervisors to accommodate the hardware, software and technology needs for all non-essential employees who will be working remotely. Please work directly with your supervisor on your specific needs.

  • How to access email from anywhere: the web address to get email is https://webmail.rockvalleycollege.edu. Enter just your E# and normal password when prompted and you should have access.
    • An alternative method is to go to https://rockvalleycollege.edu and select MyRVC
    • On the right hand side you will see Additional Resources for Employees – click the + sign to expand
    • Select Employee Email
       
  • You also have access to all of the Office suite of applications through the same site. To get to them, click on the grid in the upper left next to Outlook. These are the latest versions of the Office applications.
     
  • Voicemails: Currently you should be getting your voicemails sent to you via email; this is an easy way to monitor your voicemail instead of calling in and checking. If you are not and would like to, you can sign into the phone system at https://phonehome.rvc.local/ucp/. Use your E# and normal password to sign in.
    • Once signed in, select Voicemail
    • In the next column, select Settings
    • Under Voicemail Settings, make sure Email Attachment is ON.
    • If it is OFF, click on the slider and it will change to ON and save your settings automatically.
       
  • Quarry access: the Quarry is available from anywhere by going to https://quarry.rockvalleycollege.edu. Or you can use the second method above for email and select Quarry

 

  • VPN access: We have a limited number of VPN connections available for employee use. By setting this up on your RVC laptop or your personal home computer, you can connect to RVC’s network and have access to all of the resources just as if you were on campus. If you need VPN access, please contact your supervisor so they can put in a Helpdesk ticket to request it. If you need access to more than just Colleague and ImageNow, please have your supervisor note what is needed in the Helpdesk request.
     
  • Virtual desktops and applications: These are programs that you can run on Chromebooks, laptops, and desktop computers from the cloud just as if you are running them locally. We have set up Colleague access for all employees to use and we are working on setting up ImageNow if needed. Instructions on use will be forthcoming soon.
     
  • Wifi Hotspots: Hotspots are small devices that use cellular signals to get wifi-enabled devices on to the Internet. IF you do not have Internet access at home and must be able to access either the virtual apps or VPN, we will have a limited supply of them available for those who are critical for continued operations. Also, you must be able to get a signal from Sprint at your location since they will be our supplier.
     
  • File Access: If you use any of the above methods to work from home, you will NOT have access to any files stored on your work computer. If you need access to them, they should all be copied to either your R: drive or to your department’s common folder. As a reminder, all files should be stored on the R: drive or department folder, never on your local computer!
     
  • If you do have Internet connectivity at home and need all of the apps on your work desktop computer, RVC will have a policy where you can check out your work computer and take it and set it up. Since the computers are not wifi enabled, you will need to use an network cord to connect it to your Internet router to get access. We have 7 and 25 foot cables for loaning out to accomplish this. IT will not be able to make a home visit to get it set up for you so please make sure you can before requesting to take your computer home.

Once again, if you have issues with anything IT can help you with, for immediate service call 815-921-4800. This is being monitored by someone in IT and by an answering service, who will has a call list to find an IT person to help. Due to the anticipated volume of calls, please give us 24 hours to resolve (if possible) your issue. For non-immediate help, please go to http://support.rockvalleycollege.edu and fill out a help desk ticket. All IT help desk people will be monitoring their email and will see all new tickets.

Yes. The IT Help Desk will continue to assist both essential and non-essential employees. You can contact IT Help at helpme@rockvalleycollege.edu or at 815-921-4800.

You have two options for this. Voicemail messages should appear in your RVC College-issued email and you can play them directly from there. You can also call your direct line at the College. When your outgoing message begins playing, press * and enter your 4-digit phone password. You will then have access to your phone menu.

Due to uncertainties on the length of the Work-from-home Action Plan, please remove any perishable items from your office, refrigerator, storage areas to avoid spoiling and contamination.

Yes. Through April 30, all non-essential, College-related travel by students and employees is prohibited. All pre-paid travel expenses will be reimbursed to you. If you have a circumstance that you feel is essential, please work with your appropriate Vice President for approval.  Vice Presidents will direct to Executive Leadership Team for a decision.

Yes, the College is expanding its communication protocols and is implementing various mechanisms to communicate with employees and students. Visit the College's COVID-19 site, monitor your RVC-issued email frequently and check back to this FAQ regularly for updates. In addition, the College is following the CDC cleaning protocols college-wide.  There are dedicated cleaning crews assigned to each building that are using disinfectants to wipe down common surfaces like door handles, handrails, and common areas.  This is occurring on a continual basis.  The College continues to monitor and will take appropriate actions as guided by the WCHD.

Please follow the CDC's recommendations on this matter. The CDC does not recommend that people who are well wear a facemask to protect themselves from respiratory illnesses, including COVID-19. You should only wear a mask if a healthcare professional recommends it. A facemask should be used by people who have COVID-19 and are showing symptoms. This is to protect others from the risk of getting infected. The use of facemasks also is crucial for health workers and other people who are taking care of someone infected with COVID-19 in close settings (at home or in a health care facility). 

If you choose to wear a mask or gloves you may purchase those and do so. 

Based on Governor Pritzker’s stay-at-home order for the State of Illinois, there are significant measures Rock Valley College is taking to comply while continuing to provide services to our students and community. The College has also been advised by the Illinois Community College Board (ICCB) with guidance on how community colleges should consider proceeding based on this development. 

The College began its transition to online and alternative instructional delivery for all credit classes on Monday, March 23 and will continue online until further notice. 

In addition, the College’s Work-from-Home Action Plan for employees will remain in effect, at minimum, through the duration of the stay-at-home order. Only critical personnel as identified by the Incident Response Team will be allowed on campus during this time. Access to exterior doors has been removed for non-essential personnel. If there are special circumstances that require you to return to campus, please contact your supervisor.  Supervisors will consult with their respective VP who will then notify the RVC Police Department at 815-921-4357 if any non-essential employees require access so RVCPD can restore access as needed for those employees.

We will continue to follow the direction of the Governor before making any decisions on how to proceed. Should the Governor lift the stay-at-home order, we will rely on guidance, as we have throughout this situation, from our Incident Commander, RVC Police Chief Rick Jenks, in conjunction with officials from the Winnebago County Health Department. The situation will be evaluated to determine if an additional extension of time for RVC’s Work-from-home Action Plan will be necessary, and if so, the College will re-evaluate the employees identified as essential and non-essential to restore our operations to meet the needs of our students and community. 

For the pay period of March 16 through March 31, continuous part-time employees will need to keep track of hours worked. Full-time non-exempt employees need to track any overtime hours to be submitted.

Additional details will be forthcoming for how to submit hours for timecard employees for the pay period of March 16 through March 31.

No action is required at this time for full-time exempt employees.

If you have any questions pertaining to Payroll please direct them to Amanda Berkman or Ellen Olson.

What happens if I want to take time off from work?

Inform your supervisor that you intend to use leave time and will not be accessible while working from home. Your supervisor will notify Amanda Berkman in Payroll of the approved leave time.

I am on intermittent Family Medical Leave and scheduled to be off one day per week for appointments. Now that the College is temporarily on a work-from-home schedule, do I still need to record the days that I take off for IFML as FML?


Yes, if you are absent from work due to FML you should record that time as FML. Please email Tracy Luethje in HR and copy Amanda Berkman in Payroll.

 

I need to submit a Pay Processing Form (PPF). How do I submit those during the temporary work-from-home period?

All PPF's must have required “digital” signatures from originator/Department Head/VP or Executive Director/Executive Leadership Member, then send to Judy Hamilton in HR for approval. An email approval chain from originator to Department Head to VP or Executive Director to Executive Leadership Member is acceptable. Each approver should include their employee ID # to indicate approval of the PPF. 

All part-time and continuous part-time employees will be paid based on their normal scheduled hours. We need employees to document on their time cards the ACTUAL hours worked, but supervisors (during the approval process) should indicate their employees’ normal scheduled hours so they can be paid the difference. 

From Comcast's website:

Comcast is taking steps to implement the following new policies for the next 60 days, and other important initiatives:

  • Xfinity WiFi Free For Everyone: Xfinity WiFi hotspots across the country will be available to anyone who needs them for free – including non-Xfinity Internet subscribers. For a map of Xfinity WiFi hotspots, visit www.xfinity.com/wifi. Once at a hotspot, consumers should select the “xfinitywifi” network name in the list of available hotspots and then launch a browser.
     
  • Pausing Our Data Plan: With so many people working and educating from home, we want our customers to access the internet without thinking about data plans. While the vast majority of our customers do not come close to using 1TB of data in a month, we are pausing our data plans for 60 days giving all customers Unlimited data for no additional charge.
     
  • No Disconnects or Late Fees: We will not disconnect a customer’s internet service or assess late fees if they contact us and let us know that they can’t pay their bills during this period. Our care teams will be available to offer flexible payment options and can help find other solutions.
     
  • Internet Essentials Free to New Customers: As announced yesterday, it’s even easier for low-income families who live in a Comcast service area to sign-up for Internet Essentials, the nation’s largest and most comprehensive broadband adoption program. New customers will receive 60 days of complimentary Internet Essentials service, which is normally available to all qualified low-income households for $9.95/month. Additionally, for all new and existing Internet Essentials customers, the speed of the program’s Internet service was increased to 25 Mbps downstream and 3 Mbps upstream. That increase will go into effect for no additional fee and it will become the new base speed for the program going forward.
     
  • News, Information and Educational Content on X1: For those with school-age students at home, we’ve created new educational collections for all grade levels in partnership with Common Sense Media. Just say “education” into your X1 or Flex voice remote. To help keep customers informed, we also have created a collection of the most current news and information on Coronavirus. Just say “Coronavirus” into your X1 or Flex voice remote.
     
  • 24x7 Network Monitoring: Underpinning all of these efforts, Comcast’s technology and engineering teams will continue to work tirelessly to support our network operations. We engineer our network capacity to handle spikes and shifts in usage patterns, and continuously test, monitor and enhance our systems and network to ensure they are ready to support customer usage. Our engineers and technicians staff our network operations centers 24/7 to ensure network performance and reliability. We are monitoring network usage and watching the load on the network both nationally and locally, and to date it is performing well.
     

Xfinity Resources

 

From Charter's website:

In an effort to ensure Americans have necessary access to online resources, qualifying households with students can get 60 days of FREE access with a Spectrum Internet account.

  • Available for households with K-12 or college students
  • Limited to new accounts who do not already have a Spectrum Internet subscription
  • Installation fees will be waived

In addition, Spectrum WiFi hotspots will be open for public use.

Call  1-844-579-3743  to enroll.

The Mail & Distribution Center (MDC) will have limited services through April 7.   

MDC will be staffed on the following dates:

  • Tuesday, March 31, 2020: 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.
  • Tuesday, April 7, 2020: 8 a.m. to 4 p.m.

The Mail & Distribution Center will notify you if you have any mail to be picked-up and schedule a time for pick-up.  Remember to continue to maintain social distancing. 

Please use the door located by the receiving dock at the Northwest side of the building.  

No bulk mailings will be accommodated during this period.

Deliveries and Freight:

  • UPS and FedEx have been notified and will be delivering to campus on 3/31 and 4/6.
     
  • All freight deliveries will be accepted and alternative contact information will be provided so RVC can take delivery on days when MDC staff are not available.

MDC will send notification of receipt.

If you have any questions or concerns about mail please contact Ellen Olson at e.olson@rockvalleycollege.edu.

The College will continue to monitor the situation and provide updates to the campus community via your College-issued email, RVC Alerts, and the dedicated COVID-19 website. If you have not already signed up for RVC Alerts, you can do so at rockvalleycollege.edu/alerts.

The College realizes that there are many unanswered questions and this situation is continually evolving.  We thank you for your patience and understanding.