Rock Valley College

FAQs on COVID-19

updated  3/7/2022

The College’s main goal is to prevent the spread of COVID and to maintain safe, in-person operations. On August 26, 2021, Illinois Governor J. B. Pritzker issued a statewide mandate (Executive Order 2021-20) requiring all college students and employees to either receive the COVID-19 vaccine or get tested weekly for COVID-19. The executive order went into effect across the state on Sept. 19, 2021.

This FAQ addresses some common questions  from employees and students. Students and employees can send additional questions not answered below to   The FAQ will continue to be updated as the college receives additional information. Please check back frequently and monitor this FAQ as well as your college-issued RVC email.


The College’s main goal is to prevent the spread of COVID and to maintain safe, in-person operations. While an Executive Order is not a law, when one is issued by the Governor, a state’s Executive Branch has the authority to issue sanctions to organizations who receive state funds. If Rock Valley College does not follow the Executive Order, we risk sanctions by the state.  

Employees and students should have received an email to your RVC email account on Monday, Sept. 23 at approximately 9 am. We have heard some reports that some individuals may not have received the link on Monday. If that has happened to you, please email Include your full name and RVC ID number in the body of the email, and we can correct the issue to send you a link.

Yes. The Governor’s office announced that the mandate goes into effect on Sept. 19. Therefore, students and employees should be prepared to submit proof of vaccination or a COVID test the week of September 20. More information about how to submit proof of vaccine and/or COVID test will be forthcoming. Until that time, please work to gather the necessary documentations to comply with the executive order. 

The college has selected a reporting tool called Qualtrics. It is an encrypted software system that meets all HIPAA and PHI privacy requirements.  These  records will be kept separate from all other student/employee records. 

Information will be uploaded to the system by the student or employee. Neither instructors nor supervisors should request this information directly. Instructions regarding how to submit documentation will be provided via campus email.

Those with access to the Qualtrics reporting tool is extremely limited in order to protect the privacy of our students, employees, and visitors. 

Individual information submitted is not shared with the State or any other entity. 

Students and employees should submit their proof of vaccination status into Qualtrics. RVC students and employees will receive detailed instructions via their college email as soon as they are available.

Per the IL Governor’s Executive Order 21-20, all individuals who either cannot or choose not to submit proof of vaccination are required to test weekly. There is currently no exemption from testing weekly.  

Individuals may be exempt from receiving the vaccine. However, individuals who receive an exemption or choose not to get vaccinated will need to test weekly. (No need to submit proof of exemption – simply go to weekly testing) 

Individuals may be exempt from receiving the vaccine. However, individuals who receive an exemption or choose not to get vaccinated will need to test weekly. (No need to submit proof of exemption – simply go to weekly testing) 

No. Evidence of antibodies does not meet the requirements of Executive Order 2021-20, which includes the following language regarding vaccination and testing: 

Proof of COVID-19 vaccination may be met by providing one of the following (1) a CDC COVID-19 vaccination record card or photograph of the card; (2) documentation of vaccination from a health care provider or electronic health record; or (3) state immunizations records. 

Testing may be done using a test that either has Emergency Use Authorization by the FDA or be operating per the Laboratory Developed Test requirements by the U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.  

 Home tests and rapid tests are not accepted. 

Students enrolled in all online courses are exempt from the testing/vaccine mandate. If students come to campus (more than 15 minutes weekly) for any reason, will need to supply proof of vaccine or test weekly.  

No. Information will be uploaded to the system by the individual.  Instructions for how to upload documents will be provided to students and employees the week of Sept. 13 via their RVC email.

Personal and Success Counseling will continue to provide mental health and academic support. 

Andrea McCauley, RVC's Personal & Success Counselor, can be reached via email at, 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.)

On-campus appointments are available and must be scheduled prior to arriving on campus.  

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

Students will work with the Dean of Students' office. Employees will work with Human Resources. Individuals should complete the COVID-19 Self-Reporting Form. Each case is different. Generally, individuals will be off campus for 10-14 days. 

Yes. Per the Executive Order, testing must be done using a test that has either emergency use authorization by the FDA or be operating per Laboratory Developed Test requirements by the US Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Home tests and rapid tests are not accepted.

Individuals who are not vaccinated for any reason must test every seven days and submit their results via Qualtrics. Weekly reminders will be sent out every Monday. 

The testing site on RVC's main campus is a Shield IL Testing Site offering the PCR Saliva Test.  Advanced registration is strongly recommended for the testing site. Due to high demand, walk-in testing may have longer wait times. 

We continue to ramp up testing at the SHIELD testing site located inside the ERC. The test is free for RVC students and employees. Currently, it takes approximately 24 hours to get the results back. As testing volume increases, test results may take longer to process.   

Please be patient with the SHIELD IL testing team. As demand increases across the state, it has put a strain on operations and turnaround time for testing results. We strongly encourage individuals to pre-register for testing as the wait time for walk-ins has increased. The testing center team is doing a great job keeping up with the demand and we appreciate their hard work.

While inconclusive or rejected results are uncommon, it is possible to see this as your test results. If your results come up inconclusive or rejected, you should test again as soon as possible.  Inconclusive or rejected results typically means that your sample was not a clean catch or there was not enough sample to test. 

Not at this time. Rock Valley College is committed to serving its students and employees first. It will revisit community testing at a later date. With the exception of NIU and OSF students who take classes on the RVC campus. 

Face masks are currently optional at all RVC locations.

  • All employees must either upload proof of vaccination to the College’s site (one time), or submit to weekly testing by each Thursday at 5 pm to prove that they are negative of COVID-19.
  • For employees who have not yet been vaccinated, the college will allow for up to 2 hours of paid time off per vaccination remaining.
    • 2-4 hours total paid time off depending on manufacturer of vaccination;
      • J&J requires one vaccination shot, so an employee receiving J&J would receive up to 2 hours paid time off, or
      • Moderna/Pfizer requires two shots, whereby up to 4 hours will be considered paid time off
    • Supervisors should notify Maureen Miller in HR for anyone taking paid time off work to receive a vaccination.
  • Employees who experience negative side effects due to getting vaccinated may use their paid sick time accruals for their recovery.
  • Employees who do not want to get vaccinated, or chose not to disclose their vaccination history, are not required to request an exemption from vaccination.
  • Employees who do not want to get vaccinated, are in the waiting period prescribed between vaccinations, or chose not to disclose their vaccination history, are required to test weekly to prove that they are negative for COVID-19.
  • Employees who are required to test weekly will be allowed to take up to one hour of paid time off to test.  If more than one hour is needed to take the test, employees will be required to offset that time with accrued vacation/personal/sick time balance.
  • Employees who refuse to either validate that they have been fully vaccinated, or refuse to test weekly to prove they are negative for COVID-19 may not be allowed to be on campus and may be placed on unpaid leave. 
    • If an employee refuses to comply and is placed on unpaid leave, progressive discipline may occur in accordance with College policies and/or collective bargaining agreements.

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

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