Guidance for ACU Related Meetings and Events

ACU’s goal is to reduce capacity at meetings and events to slow the potential transmission of the virus, and to minimize exposure. All members of the ACU community are asked to do their part in this effort.

University Events (UE) will be the central office for reviewing and approving all ACU related events (on and off-campus) and space utilization for the ACU campus. For questions concerning event approval, please email universityevents@acu.edu. Approval is needed for any in-person meetings or events at ACU for groups larger than 10 individuals. Events with 10 or fewer do not need to request approval; however, appropriate virus prevention measures must be followed.

Events will be reviewed in coordination with a committee including representation from Academics, Advancement, Athletics, Enrollment and Student Life. This committee will help ensure all events are approved and will follow specific protocols and guidelines according to current health and safety standards. When appropriate safety and distancing protocols can be followed, UE intends to approve events. Campus Events software is being implemented to help with the management of events; until the software is fully implemented, please use the following Google form to submit requests for approval: On-Campus Meeting and Event Approval Request Form.

Additionally, Student Life has assembled a subcommittee, chaired by Nick Tatum, to oversee and approve all student activities and events this fall, including, but not limited to student organizations, OMA, Student Productions, fraternities and sororities, Residence Life and small-group Chapels. When appropriate safety and distancing protocols can be followed, the subcommittee intends to approve events.

For approval of Student Life events, please use the following form: Student Life Event/Meeting Approval Request Form.

General Guidance for Meetings and Events

  • For all gatherings, remind attendees of simple measures to lower risk and prevent the spread of viruses (stay home if you don’t feel well or have fever, don’t shake hands, wear masks, practice physical distancing, etc). Provide easy access to handwashing facilities, and make sure alcohol-based sanitizers are readily available to all participants.
  • Meeting and/or event organizers are encouraged to employ remote technology if possible (Zoom, Skype, etc.) to help avoid exposure.
  • Meeting and event organizers are encouraged to use remote technology to collaborate via teleconferencing instead of meeting in person. ACU Information Technology offers several tools for collaboration, videoconferencing, chat, online storage and more. Find out what tools are available in this helpful tech guide for working remotely.
  • Job interviews for open positions should be conducted remotely via video- or teleconferencing tools, such as Zoom, or by telephone. Whatever approach you take, use it with all applicants for the same job, so none are disadvantaged. Using fair and consistent hiring practices remains important. Contact humanresources@acu.edu for assistance.

Indoor Events

All event organizers are strongly encouraged to host events outside if possible.

  • Limit indoor meeting or event occupancy to 50% capacity or refer to the posted capacity signage posted in each instructional space. Additional participants will need to join remotely. For frequently used spaces that have not been recalculated, recalculate capacity based on 36 square feet per person, reducing the final capacity count to take into account any large furniture or fixed/blocked spaces in the room.
  • If you need assistance with knowing the capacity of your building or space please contact the Office of Risk Management at risk@acu.edu or 325-674-6142.
  • Communicate health and safety expectations in advance and practice virus prevention measures (stay home if you don’t feel well or have fever, bring your own face mask, wear a face mask, hand washing and disinfection, physical distancing, etc.).
  • Events with more than 30 attendees must have hand washing or hand sanitizing stations available (e.g., hand washing sink and supplies and/or hand sanitizer). There should be one station for every 30 attendees.
    • Tables can be requested through a work order. UE has 8-foot-long tables to use for sanitizing stations. It is recommended to place two one-gallon bottles with pumps on each table. There will be an added cost to rent and deliver the tables.
    • Additionally, if you need access to hand sanitizer, disinfectant supplies, or personal protective equipment (PPE) please complete the COVID-19 Supply Request Form. Risk Management has secured EPA- recommended hand sanitizer, disinfectant and PPE that may be needed.

Outdoor Events

  • All event organizers are strongly encouraged to host events outside if possible. Additionally, organizers are required to encourage event participants to physically distance. Outdoor event participants are required to physically distance or wear a face mask. Note: UE or the Student Life Subcommittee may require masks and physical distancing, depending on the type of outdoor event. 
  • Events with more than 30 attendees must have hand washing or hand sanitizing stations available and placed to allow 6 feet for physical distancing. There should be one station for every 30 attendees. 
    • This can be requested through a work order. UE has 8-foot-long tables for sanitizing stations. It is recommended to place two one-gallon bottles with pumps on each table. There will be an added cost to rent and deliver the tables.
    • Additionally, if you need access to hand sanitizer, disinfectant supplies, or personal protective equipment (PPE) please complete the COVID-19 Supply Request Form. Risk Management has secured EPA recommended hand sanitizer, disinfectant and PPE that may be needed. 
  • Event organizers wishing to host an outdoor event with 300 people or more must first submit to UE a written plan for maintaining virus prevention measures, to include physical distancing and hand sanitizing stations. UE will request the plan be reviewed by the Emergency Response Team (ERT) and forwarded to the Abilene mayor for a decision to be made within five business days.

Visitors to Campus Attending Your Event

  • ACU’s goal is to reduce exposure. All members of the ACU community are asked to help in this effort.
  • Event organizers should know and understand restrictions and other considerations based on health department travel restrictions. Anyone intending to visit the ACU campus after recently traveling internationally or on cruise ship travel will be required before coming to campus to self-quarantine in an off-campus location per CDC guidance after arrival in the continental U.S..
  • Organizers should be aware of all visitors scheduled to attend the event and take responsibility to inform them of ACU’s health and safety guidelines.

Facilities Considerations

  • UE will provide event organizers with a link to help select a room or event space large enough to prevent crowding for the expected attendance. 
  • Stagger food and drink stations, and serve food and beverages individually wrapped such as bagged lunches, individual water bottles, etc. Avoid serving meals when multiple hands will touch the food (e.g., bowls of chips, buffet-style meals). Catering meals should be individually packaged. 
  • Do not leave condiments, silverware, flatware, glassware or other traditional tabletop items on an unoccupied table. Provide condiments only upon request, and in single-use (non-reusable) portions. Utensils should be single-use. Clean and disinfect areas used for dining (table, counter, etc.). 
  • When possible, reduce the number of passengers on shuttles or golf carts to provide more space for passengers to physically distance.
  • Event organizers using classroom or instructional space will be responsible for disinfecting the room or space after the event by using disinfectant products available on site.
  • Event organizers using common spaces should disinfect areas used by event participants with departmental disinfectant products. If you need access to hand sanitizer, disinfectant supplies or personal protective equipment (PPE) please complete the COVID-19 Supply Request Form.

Education/Communication Considerations as Event Unfolds
Before the event:

  • Remember, this is an evolving situation. Let your participants know you might need to cancel at the last minute and that they should make contingency plans just in case.
  • Consider virtual options (e.g., livestream, group video chat).
  • Education and communication from event organizers should include:
    • Acknowledgment that COVID-19 is a concern and that all participants must do their part to minimize exposure.
    • A link to the ACU COVID-19 Web page: https://www.acu.edu/coronavirus.html.
    • Advise to stay home if ill (consider refunding ticket costs if someone needs to cancel).
    • Usual virus prevention precautions.
    • Notification that this is an evolving situation and events may be cancelled at any point.

During the event:

  • Display signs/posters/table tents/digital images reminding participants of virus prevention measures.
  • Assign a point person for participants to use as a resource should they develop symptoms during the event.
  • Announce actions that participants should take to protect themselves and limit infection spread at the start and throughout the event.
  • Encourage people to replace handshakes with greetings not requiring contact.

What to do if someone presents with symptoms during the event:

  • If there is a medical emergency, please call 911.
  • Participants who display or express they have symptoms should be asked to leave the event. 
  • The ACU Medical Clinic is operating by appointment only and patients need to call 325-674-2625 to be screened and have an appointment scheduled. No one should enter the Medical Clinic without an appointment.
  • Wildcat Care (telemedicine) is also available 24/7 at no cost to students, enabling them to consult a provider from home.
  • Participants should not be encouraged to go directly to any health care provider without a phone call prior. Health care facilities need to prepare for the person’s arrival.