Research and Creative Achievement (RCA) under COVID-19 at UMBC

Latest Update – August 25, 2021

Effective July 6, 2021 all Faculty and Staff have been approved to access Campus.

Community members who are fully vaccinated and whose vaccine has been reported and verified will no longer be required to test or symptom track. If you do become symptomatic or test positive for COVID-19, we ask that you continue to complete and submit the Case Report Form.

Unvaccinated individuals, individuals granted exemptions, and individuals who have not reported their vaccination will be provided specific instructions on the health and safety measures they must complete when they return to campus. This will include regular testing and symptom tracking. We are also still in negotiations on health and safety measures for represented employees.

All members of the UMBC community are expected to follow the Fall 2021 Return-to-Campus process in place to visit the UMBC campus.  Phase 3 of this process became effective on August 9, 2021.

The original On-Campus RCA Activities Request that was required for On-Campus access to resume your research or creative achievement activities is no longer required has been retired. We very much appreciate the compliance of the entire RCA community in using these RCA access forms that helped us manage your access in a safe but productive manner.

For more information visit the UMBC COVID19 Website.

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Reporting Vaccination

Please report your vaccination ASAP.  It only takes about 30 seconds to complete the consent form to share your information with the University. Once you have reported, your COVID Compliance Card in your myUMBC profile will be updated, though this process may take up to two weeks.

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COVID Compliance Card in myUMBC
  • Your current access status, testing and symptom monitoring compliance results will be posted to your COVID Compliance Card in your myUMBC profile. Please note that it may take up to 72 hours for your results to be posted.
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Campus Visitors
  • One-time visitors to our campus who will attend in-person events or activities must comply with the following safety requirements:
    1. You must have a UMBC faculty or staff sponsor who will be responsible for seeking access approval, coordinating your visit, and accompanying you while on campus. Your sponsor must limit your access to campus to the location of your in-person event.
    2. Inform your sponsor if your visit falls within 10 days of any positive test and do not come to campus or if you have symptoms.
    3. Face coverings or masks are required to be worn in buildings. Masks are not required outdoors unless you are participating in an activity or event that requires them.
  • Off-campus partners who need to visit campus to conduct essential university business should work with their on-campus sponsor/partner to complete this form.
  • Please see further instructions on the official Visiting Campus web page.
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University-related DOMESTIC Travel 
  • UMBC has resumed DOMESTIC travel for University-related activities effective June 1, 2021
    • University-related travel is travel for educational, research, or business purposes tied to the traveler’s affiliation with the University.
    • All travelers on University-related travel are required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 prior to the onset of the travel, unless appropriate exemption documentation is on file with the University.
    • It is critical that you submit your UMBC travel request through the DocuSign Out-of-State Travel Pre-Approval prior to making travel arrangements to ensure reimbursement regardless of the funding source. 
      • Failure to obtain out-of-state travel pre-approval prior to making travel arrangements will result in denial of reimbursement regardless of the funding source.
    • Please review the following guidance prior to requesting approval for out-of-state domestic University-related travel. We require and expect travelers to continue practicing all COVID-19 health and safety protocols according to CDC guidance and to comply with state and local mandates. Travelers must also be aware of and comply with current health and safety protocols at their destination site. Travelers will be required to acknowledge that they have reviewed and are in compliance with this guidance:
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University-related INTERNATIONAL Travel 
  • Requests for INTERNATIONAL travel can be submitted effective August 1, 2021. Requests are subject to general out-of-state travel approval policies and UMBC’s existing International Travel Policy
  • Please review UMBC’s Updated International Travel Guidance
  • If you choose to travel abroad, understand that you may experience difficulty departing from the U.S., and you may be subjected to mandatory testing, quarantine, and other requirements upon arrival at your international destination. When seeking to return to the U.S., you may experience travel disruptions or travel bans impeding your ability to return. Additionally, the ability of U.S. Embassies and Consulates to provide services to travelers remains severely limited in many countries.
  • A new International Travel Process is now available to faculty, staff, and students.
    • Failure to obtain formal approval prior to making international travel arrangements will result in denial of reimbursement regardless of the funding source and unauthorized travelers will not be covered by UMBC’s international travel insurance plan.
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Self-Quarantine and Testing Requirements after International Travel
  • International arrivals have to have a negative COVID-19 test before arrival in the US.  Please review the CDC Requirements for Testing and International Air Travel for up-to-date information.
  • Any UMBC Community member returning from international travel for non-University-related purposes is required to
    • Before arriving in the United States:
      In most cases, air passengers coming to the United States, including U.S. citizens and fully vaccinated people, are required to have a negative COVID-19 test result no more than 3 days before travel or documentation of recovery from COVID-19 in the past 3 months before they board a flight to the United States. Please confer with the current test requirements before your return/arrival in the United States.
    • After travel:
      Get tested with a viral test 3-5 days after travel.
      Self-monitor for COVID-19 symptoms; isolate and get tested if you develop symptoms.
      Follow all state and local recommendations or requirements after travel.
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Guidelines for Return to Campus
  • We strongly encourage you to make yourself familiar and follow the CDC Guidelines for Institutes of Higher Education, updated April 27, 2021. Under “Promoting Behaviors that Reduce Spread” the CDC provides strategies to encourage behaviors that reduce the spread of COVID-19.
Additional Health Precautions
  • In addition to testing, we ask that our community members continue to take a number of health and safety actions to ensure the continued well-being of our entire campus community. This includes:
    • Physical distancing – all safety measures such as reduced density in labs continue to apply.
    • Wearing a mask within any UMBC Campus building – this includes your lab or studio area.
    • Regular and thorough hand washing.
IMPORTANT: Any of your RCA team members need to stay at home if they feel unwell.

COVID-19 often starts with mild symptoms such as:

  • Fever or chills;
  • Sore throat or dry cough;
  • Shortness of breath;
  • Headaches or muscle pains;
  • Loss of taste or smell.
  • Other symptoms can include nausea, vomiting or diarrhea, runny nose or congestion.

If you or any of your RCA team members has tested positive for COVID-19 or exhibits ay symptoms consistent with COVID-19 as outlined above, we strongly request contacting UMBC’s University Health Services, 410-455-2542 who will notify UMBC’s Contact Response Team.

As you return to campus, you will notice signage throughout the buildings reminding you to keep yourself and others healthy.

  • Wash your hands frequently;
  • Keep your phone in your pocket or bag;
  • Sanitize shared equipment before and after use;
  • Maintain at least 6 feet of distance from others;
  • Avoid touching your face and mask.

We will continue monitoring public health information issued by the CDC and OSHA for updated guidance on this global pandemic and will be watching our campus community for signs of potential exposure.

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UMBC is a member of the USM COVID Research & Innovation Task Force
  • University System of Maryland (USM) Chancellor Jay A. Perman assembled a Task Force to leverage and mobilize systemwide research and innovations that will engage policymakers, business leaders, and the entrepreneurial community in addressing the COVID-19 pandemic.
  • Laurie Locascio, Vice President for Research at both UMD-College Park and UMB, serves as Task Force Chair.
  • In addition to USM Chancellor Jay A. Perman, the Task Force includes UMB President Bruce Jarrell, UMCP President Darryll Pines and UMBC Vice President for Research Karl V. Steiner.
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