Frequently Asked Questions

Find answers to common questions regarding COVID-19 and OSU-Cascades' response.

  • For questions not answered here or regarding OSU’s response, click here
  • For questions about admissions, click here.
  • Questions and answers are updated frequently, so check back often.
  • If you can’t find an answer to your question, contact covid-19@osucascades.edu.

Admissions

Yes, the Office of Admissions is accepting applications for fall 2020 through early September. Apply now

Making a final college decision during the COVID-19 pandemic can be challenging, and the Office of Admissions can help:

  • The Newly Admitted Student page provides answers to many of your questions and guides you through next steps.
  • To help relieve some concern, we have extended your decision deadline to September 1, 2020. You must finalize your decision by this date to attend OSU-Cascades in fall 2020. 
  • If you decide not to attend OSU-Cascades, your Advance Tuition Deposit is refundable if you notify OSU-Cascades by end of day on Sept. 1, 2020.
  • Your enrollment confirmation is required for you to participate in a Cascades START orientation.
  • If financial difficulty prevents you from paying the Advance Tuition Deposit, request a deposit waiver.
  • Admitted students are encouraged to follow the next steps to ensure a smooth transition to OSU-Cascades.

Students who have been admitted for the 2020 fall term and wish to defer their enrollment to a future term or year are advised to review our policy for deferring admission and scholarships. Please email admit@osucascades.edu to change your admission start term.

The COVID-19 pandemic has impacted schools throughout the country. Because of this, OSU will accept unofficial copies of transcripts until official copies indicating your successful graduation can be obtained. Please work closely with the OSU-Cascades Admissions Office to ensure application requirements are met for your specific situation. In addition:

  • Your high school or college spring term 2020 grades may display as incomplete, with pass/fail grades, or as never completed. Changes that occurred in your spring term 2020 courses may also have impacted your academic performance in those courses. You can be reassured that OSU-Cascades will not rescind admission or scholarships based on spring 2020 grading decisions.
  • College transcripts, regardless of grades must be provided. Your credit transfer will be determined using existing policies.
  • If you are a high school student needing to fulfill graduation requirements or are experiencing unforeseen delays in accessing an official transcript or diploma showing your graduation date (required for disbursement of financial aid), know that we will work with you to explore options. Please work closely with the Admissions Office.

The COVID-19 pandemic has slowed many organization’s processes. Students applying for fall 2020 who would like to be considered for admission without test scores should contact the Office of Admissions at bendbeavs@osucascades.edu. OSU will implement a test-optional admission policy for students entering beginning fall 2021.

We understand that high school or college courses that were in progress in the 2020 spring term, when K-12 schools were closed or course delivery methods changed, may display on transcripts as incomplete, with pass/fail grades, or as never completed. We also understand that the changes in course delivery during the 2020 spring term may have impacted your academic performance. Please know that: 

  • OSU-Cascades will not rescind admission or scholarships based on 2020 spring term grading decisions. Your final transcripts, when available, will need to be sent to OSU-Cascades indicating you have graduated. 
  • For future terms, the admission committee will be aware of the circumstances surrounding this period and how it reflects on applicants’ transcripts. OSU-Cascades will continue to take a holistic approach to applicant review.
  • OSU will accept and transfer coursework completed for pass credit. Spring term 2020 transfer courses completed as pass credit can be used to complete major-specific requirements for graduation. Writing and math courses needed to qualify for transfer admission may also be considered with a pass grade.

Academic Instruction

OSU-Cascades expects to provide a mix of class formats this fall with more than 80% of courses offered with elements of face-to-face instruction. In addition, because the campus’s 24 classrooms and labs have each been fitted with cameras to allow Zoom instruction, all classes will also be delivered for remote learning. Flexibility is built into our planning for fall, so that we can adapt quickly to provide any level of campus operation, should public health conditions change. To determine the planned format of your course, visit the Schedule of Classes and look for the following codes under “Meeting Info.”

  • EREM - Entirely Remote Learning – course will be delivered fully remotely.
  • PREM - Partially Remote Learning – course will include both remote and face-to-face components.
  • ROTA - Rotational Approach – course will be delivered with a set of students face-to-face for one class, and a different set of students face-to-face for the next class.

We are working to make classes accessible from a distance in the event of illness or exposure. New technology in all classrooms allows a remote instruction option for every course, particularly for students who may need to take into account their own COVID-19 risk or family health reasons. In addition, our public health strategy will support students who become ill or exposed to COVID-19 with support to access testing, tracing in partnership with Deschutes County Health Services, isolation, containment and access to health care.

Our plans are to maximize in-person instruction at OSU-Cascades this fall while prioritizing the health and wellness of the campus community. Should public health conditions require it, we will adapt quickly to provide any necessary level of campus operation, including full remote learning. For this reason, OSU-Cascades follows guidance from state and local health authorities as they monitor the COVID-19 illness in Deschutes County and elsewhere. Students will be notified of any changes through their ONID email address.

Yes, you can register for courses offered at the OSU Corvallis campus, and you do not need to change campuses. Confirm the course is offered remotely by looking for the code “EREM - Entirely Remote Learning” in the course “Meeting Info” section in the schedule of classes.  Note Corvallis class fees differ from those at OSU-Cascades.

Whether your class is in-person, hybrid or remote, check your class syllabus and with your faculty instructors for details for each class. Special rooms will be designated in Tykeson Hall and the Graduate & Research Center where students can physically distance, set up with a laptop and ear buds and participate in remote classes. The dining area in Obsidian Hall will similarly be available.

Career Development

Yes. The Career Development Center can virtually assist students in finding and applying for internship and employment opportunities in Central Oregon and beyond. Schedule an appointment in Handshake or contact career@osucascades.edu. The Financial Aid Office can help you determine if there are scholarship opportunities available.

As OSU-Cascades returns to in-person instruction, the opportunity for in-person internships will also resume. Because of physical distancing requirements to support public health, OSU guidelines stipulate that during remote instruction, students can only participate in remote internships for credit. The Career Development Center can support you in your search for an internship, whether your classes are in-person or remote. Schedule an appointment in Handshake or contact career@osucascades.edu.

Many organizations and businesses continue to hire during the pandemic. Check the Career Development Center’s Who’s Currently Hiring page, which is updated weekly and lists a sampling of employers with open positions.

If you are having trouble finding an internship, contact career@osucascades.edu to learn about options to fulfill your internship requirement. You may also contact your academic advisor to reschedule the internship to a later term.

Because of physical distancing requirements to support public health, OSU guidelines stipulate that during remote instruction, students can only participate in remote internships for credit. If your internship host is unable to provide a remote experience, contact career@osucascades.edu to learn about options to fulfill your internship requirement. You may also contact your academic advisor to reschedule the internship to a later term.

There are several options for growing your professional network during this time. We recommend subscribing to the Career Development Center’s Meet Your Future calendar to find virtual events and webinars related to your academic and career goals. As businesses and organizations reopen, many are likely to post internship and job opportunities. It’s never too early to reach out to companies you are interested in to inquire about the potential of working or interning with them in the future.

Student Success

Student leaders are developing a slate of student life activities — including outdoor adventures, drive-in movie nights, club activities and virtual activities — taking into account required health and safety precautions. Watch for the fall schedule of events on the Student Life page.

The Computer Lab in Tykeson Hall will be available for students this fall. Measures will be in place to allow physical distancing between desktop stations.

Health and Wellness

To prioritize the health and wellness of the campus community, OSU-Cascades will implement a six-point public health strategy this fall. The strategy includes prevention measures such as prevalence testing and a requirement for face coverings, access to individual testing, contact tracing in partnership with Deschutes County Health Services, self-isolation when necessary, containment and student access to care.

To support physical distancing on campus, students will experience measures such as these and more:

  • Classrooms with seats set six feet apart.
  • New directional signage within buildings.
  • Extended transition time between classes to avoid hallway crowding.
  • A/V technology in all classrooms to allow a remote instruction option for every course, particularly for students may need to take into account their own COVID-19 risk or family health reasons.
  • Student life activities that can take place in-person or virtually that account for public health guidelines.
  • Beaver Dam dining and Study Grounds coffee operations that follow public health guidance for restaurants with minimum-touch service and spaced seating.

A six-point campus public health strategy features prevention measures including prevalence testing and a requirement for face coverings; support to access to testing; tracing in partnership with Deschutes County Health Services; isolation; containment and access to care. Face coverings will be required when in enclosed public and common areas on campus and outdoor areas where physical distancing is not easily maintained, unless an exception is met as outlined in the OSU policy on face coverings. Students will each be provided one free face covering at the start of fall term.

This can be a challenging time for many students. Students seek counseling for a variety of reasons, including managing stress, relationship concerns, or identity or family issues, for example. The Student Wellness Office offers free counseling for OSU-Cascades students. No health insurance is needed, and a pre-diagnosis is not necessary. Counseling is provided by a licensed counselor and at this time via Zoom appointment only. If you do not have access to Zoom, telephone sessions can be arranged. To schedule an appointment email studentwellness@oscucascades.edu. Visit here to learn more.

If you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, you first need to obtain a medical referral through an urgent care clinic, physician’s office or hospital emergency room. Deschutes County Health Services provides a list of local testing locations.

If you do not have symptoms, but believe you have been exposed, please contact the OSU-Cascades Student Wellness Office at healthadvisor@osucascades.edu for information on how to get a referral for testing by a local provider.

 

See university response regarding symptoms.

COVID-19 is a serious respiratory illness in some people. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure: fever, cough, shortness of breath are the most common symptoms.  If you develop a fever and symptoms, such as a cough or shortness of breath, call ahead to your health care provider for medical advice. You should also follow recommended protections such as isolating yourself in a safe location, monitoring your symptoms and wearing a face covering if you have any possibility of contact with other people. Many people who become ill can recover at home. The Health Advisor can assist you in reaching medical care if you need assistance. As always, if you have difficulty breathing or a life-threatening concern, call 911 to seek medical care immediately.

If your roommate has been tested and is positive for COVID-19, you will need to isolate for 14 days and seek medical advice.  If you develop symptoms, seek a medical referral to be tested by a medical provider or at an urgent care clinic. If your roommate is not experiencing symptoms or if they have negative test results, it is unlikely you will be able to be tested at this time in Deschutes County. Testing supplies are limited so accessing a test usually requires a medical referral based upon the symptoms you are experiencing.

Housing and Dining

The OSU-Cascades student residence hall is open. To help ensure a healthy on-campus community, each and every residential student is offered a single room for the 2020-2021 academic year, with no more than two students sharing a bathroom. A live on-campus requirement is in place for first-year students. Local students planning to live at home must complete the housing application and apply for an exemption. Learn more about on-campus housing.

Yes, you can live in the OSU-Cascades residence hall as long as you are registered for OSU classes offered in any format.

If classes move to remote instruction, the first-year live on requirement will remain in place. Students living with their immediate family at an address on record with OSU as the student’s original address, regardless of the distance from campus of that address, may be approved for an exemption to the first-year live on requirement after completing an exemption request. Learn more.

The Beaver Dam’s menus will continue to emphasize fresh and healthy foods. Beaver Dam dining and Study Grounds coffee operations follow public health guidance for restaurants with minimum-touch service and spaced seating.

Facilities

OSU-Cascades uses heating, ventilation and air conditioning air filters recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers for each type of facility – office, lab, residence hall, recreational or classroom space.

 

In occupied buildings, we are increasing the intake of fresh air wherever possible in accordance with U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers recommendations. During the summer in buildings that are unoccupied, airflow, heating and cooling have been reduced to conserve energy.

Buildings on the OSU-Cascades campus were designed for specific filters recommended by the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers. The function of the space (office, lab, resident hall or classroom) determines the design of the system. Using HEPA filters in systems not designed for this type of filtering can lead to restricted airflow.

OSU-Cascades maintenance staff follow U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers recommendations on designing a building's HVAC system, ventilating outside air into buildings and changing air filters on a schedule.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends several steps to improve ventilation in occupied buildings, including increasing total airflow and increasing the percentage of outdoor air. Both will decrease concentration of airborne contaminants, including viruses. Restricting airflow can have the opposite effect and contribute to mold growth and equipment damage.

OSU-Cascades maintenance staff will follow the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommendations on the timing to change air filters. Changing air filters more often is not recommended by these agencies. Viruses, unlike dust and other particulate matter, do not cause a filter to clog or fill faster. Changing filters more frequently than recommended poses more risk to the people changing filters with no added benefit to a building and its occupants.

OSU-Cascades Facilities and Operations staff have reduced energy consumption by reducing heating and cooling, and allowing a wider fluctuation of indoor temperatures during this time. These changes have reduced energy consumption by more than 50%.

While energy usage has been reduced for all OSU-Cascades buildings during the COVID-19 response, a minimal amount of heating and cooling has continued in all buildings to protect the building, in accordance with American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers recommendations.