Visitors & Events

Protocol for Fall 2020

Safely Planning for Visitors & Events

This protocol and its requirements were created to maintain a safe and secure environment across all UAlbany campuses during the COVID-19 pandemic. All UAlbany community members — meaning all current students, staff and faculty — are required to follow these rules.  
 

  • Visitors are permitted by appointment only. 
     

  • Everyone is required to wear face masks inside all buildings, as well as while outdoors whenever six feet of distance from others cannot be maintained. 
     

  • Any on-campus gathering of more than 10 people must receive approval from the Office of Enterprise Risk Management and Compliance or its designee.  
     

  • Non-academic gatherings of more than 50 people cannot be requested or held. This limit may be altered during the semester as conditions warrant or pursuant to state directives. 
     

  • Open indoor spaces, including lobbies, atriums, hallways, or open study areas cannot be used for social gatherings. Examples include Campus Center and the Massry Center for Business.
     

  • Off-campus events will be considered if they have a specific academic, development, research or public service purpose. To request consideration, please contact the Office of Enterprise Risk Management and Compliance at riskmanagement@albany.edu with a detailed outline of the proposed off-campus event, including the campus sponsor, purpose, location, attendance level and affiliation of attendees.

 

Visitors to UAlbany Campuses 

For the purpose of this protocol, a visitor to any UAlbany campus is defined as any individual who is not a member of the UAlbany community and who has been specifically requested or invited to come to campus by a member of the UAlbany community. UAlbany community members are defined as all current students, staff and faculty.

Visitors can be participants (not audience members) in meetings, instructional activities and approved events, or vendors and other individuals whose presence is required for the functioning of the institution. 

Note: Special rules apply for people visiting students who live on campus. Please visit our Campus Life page for more information on visiting on-campus residence halls and apartments. 
 

Visitors by Appointment Only

Visitors will only be allowed into UAlbany facilities for specific, necessary appointments. 

If visitors are participants in an event, they shall only be invited once the event has been reviewed and approved. 

Procedure: 

  • Hosts must provide each visitor with a Visitor Health Screening form, which will be provided by the University. Every visitor must complete the health screening form on the day of their visit and return it to their UAlbany host before arriving on campus.  
     

  • Hosts cannot allow visitors to come to campus unless they have received the visitors’ health screenings and all questions are answered in the negative. 
     

  • If a visitor does not submit a health screening or answers any questions in the positive, their UAlbany host must reschedule the visit. 
     

  • Hosts must notify any visitor coming from states designated under the Governor’s Travel Advisory that they are required to complete the Online Traveler Health Form and self-quarantine in New York State for 14 days (starting on the first day they arrive in New York State) before coming to any UAlbany campus. 

Anyone who comes to the Uptown Campus without an appointment will only be allowed to access campus grounds along University Drive. They will not be allowed to enter any area of the Academic Podium or residential quadrangle, nor will they be allowed to enter any buildings. 

Visitors are not allowed in University buildings on any of our campuses without appointment. 

The University will place signs at all visitor and community use parking lots to inform individuals of our visitor and face mask protocols. 

Cross-registration of Courses

Cross-registration of courses will only be available online. This includes other SUNY institutions, colleges and universities within the Hudson/Mohawk Association of Colleges & Universities, and Albany Law School. 

  • Visiting students registering for UAlbany courses via cross-registration can only enroll in online or fully remote UAlbany classes.  
     

  • UAlbany students registering for courses at a participating institution via cross-registration can only enroll in online classes at that college, university or school. 

These limits do not preclude students from registering at UAlbany as non-matriculated students via General Studies or from registering at a participating institution via an equivalent office. 

Auditing Courses

Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, the University has suspended the informal auditing program for the Fall 2020 semester only. Should you be approached by someone wanting to visit your class or attend as an informal auditor, you should respond that this is not an option for Fall 2020 but may be revisited in the spring.   

Formal auditing is still an option for currently registered UAlbany students. A formal auditor must register for the course, pay regular tuition and fees, and must participate in the course as determined by the instructor.  

If you have questions, please feel free to email us at generalstudies@albany.edu

Ensembles

During the Fall 2020 semester, only UAlbany community members (meaning current students, faculty and staff) can participate in UAlbany performing ensembles — unless the ensemble is operating fully virtually.  

Exceptions to this prohibition may be granted by the Office of Enterprise Risk Management and Compliance. Please contact riskmanagement@albany.edu.

All UAlbany music and theatre activities must be conducted under separate COVID-19 protocols developed in collaboration with the academic departments involved. 

Campus tours

Campus tours will be held by invitation only until further notice. 

The Office of Undergraduate Admissions will ensure all campus tour participants participate in appropriate health screenings and are aware of our mask requirements. 

Campus tours will gather in the atrium of University Hall on the Uptown Campus. Each session will be capped at 37 individuals, including the tour guides. 

Depending on size, participants will be divided into several tour groups.  

Tour groups will walk through buildings but all informational talks and other stops along the way will take place outside. 

Each group will be accompanied by a student guide, as well as a staff member who will help enforce UAlbany’s health and safety requirements, as needed. 

 

Events on UAlbany Campuses  

For the purpose of this protocol, an event is defined as any in-person gathering of 10 or more people held in connection with any UAlbany program or operation, for the benefit of UAlbany or that uses the University’s name in any way. 
 

  • This protocol includes all meetings, social gatherings and functions held by any UAlbany student, faculty or staff member, or affiliated or associated organization, in conjunction with the University. 
     

  • This protocol does not include academic instructional meetings (classes, labs, faculty-led study or review sessions) held within the context of the assigned course delivery mode and in the assigned space that abide by the University’s health and safety requirements
     

To promote health and safety, as well as provide opportunities for those with health concerns to participate, most events should be conducted virtually or online throughout the Fall 2020 semester. 

Organizers for all in-person events should consider hosting synchronized in-person and streamed events to limit in-person attendance, to allow a wider audience to participate and to reduce the risk of someone who has not pre-registered trying to attend in person. 
 

Events
Event Cancelations

The University reserves the right to require the cancelation of any in-person event — up to the time of the event or during the event — should circumstances, in the sole judgement of the University, warrant cancelation.  

As such, organizers should ensure all University event procedures are followed during the event and any commitments made for the event contain provisions allowing an unforeseen cancelation.

Audience Members

Only UAlbany community members may be audience members at events. 

For the purpose of the events protocol, UAlbany community members are defined as all current students, faculty and staff members, and any volunteers approved by the Office of Human Resources

Exemptions for events related to recruitment and admissions will be determined on a case-by-case basis by the Office of Enterprise Risk Management and Compliance in conjunction with Enrollment Management. Please contact riskmanagement@albany.edu.

Approvals

Any event involving 10 or more people must receive the appropriate prior approval: 

Organizers can start the approval process by reserving a venue on the Event Management System (EMS). Reservations must be made at least 14 days before the event. 

The space reservation also serves as your event request. If your event will be held in any indoor or outdoor venue that is not reserved using EMS, please contact the Office of Enterprise Risk Management and Compliance at riskmanagement@albany.edu.

Additionally, all event organizers should follow the instructions provided in UAlbany’s Event Checklist

General Rules
  • All events or gatherings organized, sponsored, related and/or sanctioned by the University must take place on campus. 
     

  • Student groups must follow all rules set by the Office of Student Activities for tabling in the Campus Center. Please contact Pamela Alexander (palexander2@albany.edu) with any questions.
     

  • Event organizers must prepare an Event Safety Plan, as detailed in UAlbany’s Event Checklist. The Event Safety Plan must be submitted no later than five business days before the planned event. 
     

  • Organizers must arrange for hand sanitizer to be available at the venue’s entry or identify the nearest hand sanitizing station that participants can use. Organizers must also encourage all participants to sanitize their hands upon entering and exiting the venue. 
     

  • Organizers must be present at the event for its duration, as they are solely responsible for ensuring all required health and safety protocols are being followed. Organizers must include these requirements in any advertising or announcement related to the event. They must stop the event if the requirements are not being adhered to and end the event immediately if participants refuse to comply. 
     

  • Faculty members, graduate assistants or teaching assistants must be present for the duration of any faculty-led academic events. 
     

  • Organizers must require participants to pre-register for the event to ensure the venue is not filled past capacity, as well as to capture participants’ names and contact information in case the University needs to contact participants to cancel the event or communicate safety information before or after the event. 
     

  • Organizers must close registration for an event when it has reached the venue’s adjusted capacity. 
     

  • Organizers must check participants’ names as they enter the event to ensure only pre-registered participants attend. 
     

  • Organizers must ensure there are markings in place to ensure participants are following proper physical distancing protocols as they queue to enter the event. Some venues may have such markings already in place. If the venue does not, the organizers must use tape or another non-damaging method to create temporary markings and remove them at the end of the event. 
     

  • Organizers must state the maximum adjusted occupancy for the event venue in all advertising and promotions so that participants can make an informed decision regarding their attendance. 

Food Service

Serving food at any in-person University event is discouraged for safety reasons. 

If food must be served, it must be ordered through UAlbany Dining — in accordance to our campus food policy — and served individually, in a pre-packaged “grab-and-go" format or pre-plated. 

Single-use, disposal dishes and cutlery may be used. All condiments must be contained and distributed in individual packets. Common-use containers are not allowed. 

Event organizers must require participants to dispose of all food, dishes, utensils, cups or related items appropriately before they leave the event. 

Rules for Specific Locations

In-Person Outdoor Events 

Events or gatherings being held outdoors that involve 10 or more participants require approval, based on the “Approvals” protocol described above. 

These events or gatherings must also follow these rules: 

  • All participants must maintain six feet of physical distancing. There can be no contact between participants. 
     

  • If shared items are necessary, they must be disinfected before and after each participant’s use. The organizer must provide sanitizing cleaner and signs with instructions. 
     

  • Events may not exceed the maximum number for group gatherings as mandated by the most current New York State guidelines. That maximum may be lowered based on campus conditions. 
     

In-Person Indoor Events

Because indoor events pose the greatest health and safety risk they will only be permitted on a limited basis.  

The following items will be considered by the office responsible for approving the event: 

  • Room availability is limited, so preference will be given to events that contribute to the UAlbany community’s educational experience. 
     

  • Indoor events should be stationary, with no ongoing physical movement, exercise or dance activities, and need to use the venue’s furniture in its preset configuration without changes. 
     

  • Examples of events that might take place include lectures, discussions, trivia (or similar games and activities), DIY activities in which each participant uses their own workspace and supplies, or screenings of videos or movies purchased with a public performance license. 
     

  • Other indoor event formats will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis. 

To avoid congregation in the aisles and lobbies before and after the event, event organizers should encourage all participants to proceed immediately to their seats when they arrive and to leave in an orderly, physically distanced fashion once the event ends. Participants seated closest to the exit should be told to exit first. 

Room bookings for all indoor events must be placed via the Event Management System (EMS). To book a room that is not listed in the EMS, please contact the Office of Enterprise Risk Management and Compliance at riskmanagement@albany.edu.

All indoor events should end by 11 p.m. to allow custodial staff to clean the rooms. 

Access to Campus Buildings

Most campus buildings were unlocked on August 10, 2020. However, the University Library and Dewey Libraries are currently open for scheduled visitors only. 

The Art Museum will only be open to current students, faculty and staff. Please contact the museum directly to plan your visit. 

Academic buildings on the Downtown Campus will be locked at a set hour each night to give custodial staff enough time to ready the rooms for the next day. 

If you have questions or a facet of your event is not addressed in this protocol, please contact the Office of Enterprise Risk Management and Compliance at riskmanagement@albany.edu