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Coronavirus COVID-19: What You Should Know

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Rogue Community College President Cathy Kemper-Pelle wants you to know the college is closely monitoring the coronavirus cases in Oregon to keep our staff, faculty, students and visitors informed with RCC's most reliable and up-to-date information.


If your specific question is not answered below, please email and we will get back to you as soon as we can.

Is RCC Closed?

  • The college is open. All summer classes and most services are being offered remotely. 

The governor ordered schools to close. How long will this last?

  • On March 12, 2020, Gov. Kate Brown ordered K-12 public schools in Oregon to close from March 16-31. On March 17, she extended the closure through April 28. Neither of these orders affect colleges and universities.
  • Initially, the State recommended colleges and universities to remain open. RCC students were able to complete winter term on March 20; most final exams and projects were moved online. Spring term was offered online.
  • On March 19, the governor ordered all colleges and universities in Oregon to close from March 21 through April 28. On April 23, the governor extended this order through June 13. The executive order allows limited "critical functions" to remain open with physical distancing measures.

What is RCC doing to prevent the spread of germs on campus?

  • Most summer classes and services are being offered remotely.
  • RCC has closed most campus buildings, which are being thoroughly cleaned and sanitized during the closure.
  • Physical distancing measures are being employed and sanitization stations are available at all locations that remain open.
  • Masks are required by employees, students and visitors while in campus buildings.

If I get sick, what should I do?

  • Students and employees are strongly encouraged to stay home and to employ physical distancing and good hygiene. If you feel ill, please DO NOT come to campus.
  • Students who are not able to complete coursework due to illness should contact their instructors and their advisor.
  • Before withdrawing from classes, students should contact Rogue Central to discuss how the withdrawal may impact financial aid.

Why is this such a big deal?

  • COVID-19 is a new virus, so no one has built up immunity. It also spreads easily. For this reason, health officials are worried that a rapid rise in cases could overwhelm the health care system, making access difficult and resulting in more serious outcomes and deaths.

    The answer is "physical distancing," or limiting contact with others to reduce spread of the disease. The term "flattening the curve" comes from a chart depicting two curves that demonstrates the outcome of physical distancing. The key message of the chart is that it is essential to delay the spread of the virus from person to person, even if it is an impossible task to halt the spread, which allows health care systems to obtain necessary supplies and have adequate testing and contact tracing plans in place in preparation of any surge in patients.

    Health care professionals ask that we all participate in physical distancing and reduce the spread of coronavirus.

Here are some key steps you can take, according to the CDC and the State, to prevent the spread of illness, including coronavirus:

  • Physical distancing, as mandated by the governor's order.
  • Wash your hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • Regularly clean and disinfect surfaces.
  • If you or someone in your household is presenting symptoms, stay home from work and/or school.
  • If you need to cough or sneeze, be sure to cover it with a sleeve or tissue.
  • Use face coverings (either cloth, paper, or disposable) as appropriate.

During this outbreak, please stay informed and safe. Reliable information from trusted sources is your best defense.

Here are online resources you should use to get the most accurate, current, and fact-based information:


Here is what we know from the CDC:

The coronavirus is currently spread either through person to person contact (primary method) or through contact with infected surfaces or objects (secondary method).

  • Person-to-person spread
    • Between people who are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
    • Via respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.
    • These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.
  • Spread from contact with infected surfaces or objects
    • It may be possible that a person can get the coronavirus, by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads.

Personal Prevention Measures

There is currently no vaccine to prevent the coronavirus. The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus. However, as a reminder, the CDC always recommends everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory diseases, including:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay home and avoid contact with others when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
  • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.
  • Using face coverings (either cloth, paper, or disposable) as appropriate.

Follow CDC’s recommendations for using a facemask.

  • The CDC recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings where other physical distancing measures are difficult to maintain (e.g., grocery stores, pharmacies, etc.).
  • It is critical to emphasize that maintaining 6-feet physical distancing remains important to slowing the spread of the virus.  CDC is additionally advising the use of simple cloth face coverings to slow the spread of the virus and help people who may have the virus and do not know it from transmitting it to others.  Cloth face coverings fashioned from household items or made at home from common materials at low cost can be used as an additional, voluntary public health measure.
  • The cloth face coverings recommended are not surgical masks or N-95 respirators. The N-95 masks are critical supplies that must continue to be reserved for healthcare workers and other medical first responders, as recommended by current CDC guidance.