Florida Poly

On June 23, the Florida Board of Governors approved Florida Polytechnic University’s plan for resuming its on-campus operations in the fall.

The “Blueprint for Returning to Campus” details the steps the university is taking to provide a healthy environment for students, faculty and staff amid the COVID-19 pandemic, while continuing to deliver a high-quality STEM education.

The plan outlines how Florida Poly will begin the fall semester on Aug. 20, providing a primarily in-person academic delivery model.

However, the university will also have the capacity for a smooth transition to a remote scenario if it becomes required.

The majority of classes will be delivered in a traditional, face-to-face format with appropriate social distancing measures. A fraction of courses will be delivered using an online, engaged model.

All classes and formally scheduled activities will be remote after the Thanksgiving break.

University staff say personal responsibility and accountability are a critical component of the plan. New personal health guidelines are detailed, including a daily symptom monitoring survey, non-contact temperature measurement stations at building entrances, and the required use of face coverings.

The university also established a Medical Advisory Board composed of local health experts to provide guidance on methods to implement testing and contact tracing protocols, as well as surveillance measures. Board members include representatives from health care providers such as Lakeland Regional Health, and experts in infectious disease and public health from the University of Florida, University of South Florida, University of Central Florida and Florida International University.

“At the heart of our actions is a steadfast desire to bring our Florida Poly family back to an environment that is flexible, responsive, and prepared to work together to minimize the spread of COVID-19,” Florida Poly President Randy K. Avent said in the plan. “No plan we can make will ensure that no one falls ill. But as our University moves forward together, we hope our actions can help minimize those risks.”

Florida Poly’s Board of Governors also confirmed the reappointment of Avent as president. The reappointment officially extends the term of his contract through July 6, 2021.