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UH students on move-in day

The following New Student Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) are for UH Mānoa students enrolled in the fall 2020 semester. The FAQs will be updated as the COVID-19 pandemic and related guidance evolve during the semester. If your question is not answered, please email covid19@hawaii.edu.

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Health and Wellness

On-Campus Management of an Exposed or Diagnosed Individual

Well-Being and Behavioral Health

Student Learning

Housing Services

Dining Services

Student Services

Space Planning


Health and Wellness

What protocols are in place for coming to campus?

First and foremost, stay home if you are sick.

In order to be on campus, students, along with all employees and campus visitors, are required to use a daily, check-in mobile app or web form that monitors/screens for COVID-19 symptoms called LumiSight UH (Android or iOS). Checking in daily using the LumiSight UH app is simple and will take less than 30 seconds. The user will review the list of symptoms and possible exposure to COVID-19 in the app, answer “yes” or “no,” and the app will indicate if they are cleared to come to campus.

What do I do if I or someone close to me tests positive?

If you have tested positive for COVID-19, come into close contact with someone who tested positive or were told to quarantine or isolate, stay home and notify the UH Mānoa COVID-19 Resource Team at University Health Services Mānoa as soon as possible at (808) 956-8965 or uhsm.covid@hawaii.edu.

You are not allowed to return to campus until you are cleared by University Health Services Mānoa.

Do I need to be screened/tested?

All students, along with employees and campus visitors, are required to use the daily health check-in app, LumiSight UH, if they have to come to campus. The LumiSight UH app screens for possible COVID-19 symptoms and exposure, and no one is allowed on campus unless they receive an all clear from the app. There is no mandatory COVID-19 testing.

Do I have to wear a face mask?

All students, along with employees and visitors, must wear face masks while on campus (and on off-campus UH Mānoa facilities), indoors and outdoors. This includes classrooms, laboratories, offices, shops and common spaces such as hallways, elevators and outdoor walkways. You are required to wear face masks outdoors, especially when physical distancing is not possible.

You are not required to wear a face mask while working in isolation, (for instance, if you are working in a room by yourself) or if you have a medical condition or disability where wearing a face mask poses a health or safety risk. Reasonable accommodations will be made in those instances.


On-Campus Management of an Exposed or Diagnosed Individual

If someone is believed to have symptoms that may be COVID-19 related, what should they do?

Students can report a suspected case to UH Mānoa COVID-19 Resource Team at University Health Services Mānoa – (808) 956-8965 or uhsm.covid@hawaii.edu.

Will students and employees be notified if someone tests positive?

UH Mānoa will not publicly disclose the identity of anyone who tests positive, which is against multiple federal laws. Positive cases reported on campus in the previous 14 days will be announced via email that will balance patient privacy with the health and safety of everyone. The number of positive cases reported on campus are also listed on UH’s website.

Will UH ensure my confidentiality if I have/am exposed to or diagnosed with COVID-19?

The university follows all laws that protect the privacy of students and employees, including the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA). No personal identifiable data will be collected by the daily health check-in app.

The university will not disclose the identity of any employee or student who is exposed, diagnosed with, or is suspected of having COVID-19, except for those who need to be notified, such as the Hawaiʻi Department of Health. All positive cases must be reported to the health department, which is responsible for the state’s COVID-19 pandemic response, including contacting close contacts of infected individuals.

Will UH provide testing for faculty/staff/students?

No. Go to https://www.hah.org/ and click on “COVID-19 Screening Sites” to find a test location and each location’s requirements. University Health Services Mānoa is always available to assist students with their health and medical needs.

How will you ensure these health and well-being guidelines are up-to-date?

The guidelines will be updated based on the status of the pandemic and when government guidance is updated. All major changes in guidance will be immediately and broadly communicated to the campus community via email announcements and other channels.

I live in the residence halls/apartments. What do I do if I test positive for COVID-19?

Report your positive test result to your resident advisor and/or residence director and University Health Services Mānoa (808-956-8965 or uhsm.covid@hawaii.edu) immediately and self-isolate. Student housing will assist you in moving to an off-site location, probably a hotel, where you can isolate and be checked on during your recovery. The university will pay for any isolation costs including meals, regular check-ins and staff support.

University Health Services Mānoa will provide medical assistance, and connect you with a healthcare provider, if needed. The Hawaiʻi Department of Health will contact you to find out who you came in close contact with for their contact tracing program.

I live off-campus. What do I do if I test positive for COVID-19?

Self-isolate immediately and notify University Health Services Mānoa (808-956-8965 or uhsm.covid@hawaii.edu). You should also contact your healthcare professional for further instructions. If you do not have a local healthcare professional, University Health Services Mānoa will assist.


Well-Being and Behavioral Health

Are mental health services available?

Yes, mental health services are available through the UH Mānoa Counseling and Student Development Center (CSDC).

Services include crisis assessment, counseling and management; brief time-limited telemental health sessions; structured skills-based groups; referrals to campus and community resources, and an array of mental health promotion, prevention and workshop/training activities. Information on mental health support available for fall 2020 is also available on the CSDC website.

CSDC is open Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m. Students are asked to call (808) 956-7927 before coming to the center to help follow safe physical distancing so that staff can arrange the appropriate services. Availability of services may be impacted by CDC, state, county and university guidelines, which can change abruptly depending on the status of the pandemic.

What about students who have special needs, are immunocompromised or have disabilities?

Please contact the KOKUA Program at (808) 956-7511 or kokua@hawaii.edu for assistance.

Additional Crisis Services

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline (NSPL) – 24/7 crisis line
Toll free (800) 273-8255
NSPL website

Crisis Text Line – 24/7 crisis text line
Text ALOHA to 741741
Crisis Text Hotline website

If you prefer texting over talking or are deaf or hard of hearing, the Crisis Text Line connects you with a crisis counselor who will invite you to share at your own pace.

Hawaiʻi CARES (Coordinated Access Resource Entry System)
Call (808) 832-3100 (Oahu) or (800) 753-6879 for neighbor islands
CARES website

When you call Hawaiʻi CARES, you will be connected with a local crisis counselor who will ask a bit about you, what your needs are, and how they can help.


Student Learning

How will courses be delivered in fall 2020?

As of August 24, of the 3,324 scheduled fall courses, 86 percent are scheduled to be online (2,859 courses, asynchronous, synchronous, or a combination of asynchronous and synchronous), 10 percent hybrid (332 courses, combination of in-person and online instruction) and 4 percent in-person (133 courses, physically present in a classroom or other education space).

What if course delivery changes during fall 2020?

A course will never change from online to hybrid, or in-person or from hybrid to entirely in-person. The university is prepared to go entirely online depending on the status of the pandemic. All students should be aware and prepared for that possibility.

How will UH communicate with me about any changes in class delivery, etc. that may arise because of the pandemic?

If the campus moves to all online delivery, there will be broad communications across all of the campus communications platforms including email, social media, appropriate UH websites (MyUH, UHNews.org) and the mainstream media.

Will the credit/no-credit option that was used for Spring 2020 be available for Fall 2020 classes too?

No. Students should follow their campus procedures for CR/NC and for changing from a letter grade to CR/NC. Students considering a switch to CR/NC should check with their advisor or counselor to understand how such a change might affect progress toward their degrees.

Unlike in Spring 2020, all students were provided with details about course delivery mode for their Fall 2020 classes in advance of registration. In addition, students were notified that further changes might occur during the semester depending upon the spread of the virus. Thus, students were able to determine the best grading options for their courses and their individual needs when they registered.

Spring 2020 was an exceptional semester during which the entire University System unexpectedly had to move to remote instruction in a matter of weeks. In an effort to help students to continue to make progress toward their degrees while acknowledging these unforeseen and unprecedented circumstances, the University System passed an emergency policy to allow students to choose CR/NC after reviewing their final letter grades in their courses. The emergency policy applied only to the Spring 2020 Semester.

How many students will be in a class at once?

It depends on the size of the room. Each classroom and teaching laboratory has been reconfigured to ensure 6 feet of social distancing, which has reduced room capacity by more than 50 percent. This has led to a significant increase in online (81.6 percent) and partially online (12.9 percent) courses compared to a normal semester.

Am I required to wear a face covering/face mask?

All students, along with employees and visitors, must wear face masks while on campus (and UH Mānoa off campus facilities), indoors and outdoors. This includes classrooms, laboratories, offices, shops and common spaces such as hallways, elevators and outdoor walkways. You are required to wear face masks outdoors, especially when physical distancing is not possible.

You are not required to wear a face mask while working in isolation, for instance, if you are working in a room by yourself. Or if you have a medical condition or disability where wearing a face mask poses a health or safety risk. Reasonable accommodations will be made in those instances.

What will in-person classrooms be like?

Each classroom and teaching laboratory has been reconfigured to ensure 6 feet of physical distancing.Everyone is required to wear a face covering, and each classroom and lab is equipped with hand sanitizer stations and sanitizing wipes. Rooms will be cleaned and disinfected daily.

Will the cost of tuition be reduced if all or some of my classes are online?

No. Although there are more online courses in the fall 2020 semester, the cost of delivery of those courses and maintaining and operating the campus has increased because of the pandemic. As Hawaiʻi’s sole public institution of higher education, UH remains committed to providing an affordable, relevant, quality education during the pandemic and beyond.

Will my student fees be reimbursed?

Per UH policy “Students shall be required to pay mandatory student fees for student publications, student government, technology, and campus communication/student broadcast fees at all campuses at which they are enrolled, regardless of whether the course is taught online or at a distance.”

Students may qualify for a refund for the remainder of the fees if they are registered exclusively in an online program OR are registered for online courses exclusively and have a local permanent address not on Oʻahu.

A student’s account will initially be charged all fees. If the student qualifies for a partial refund, charges will be reversed in early September and accounts corrected.

Are final exams going to be online?

Most final exams will reflect the mode of instruction of the course. The information will be provided by the instructor at the start of the semester.


Housing/Dining/Student Services

Housing Services

What do I do if I contract COVID-19?

Report your positive test result to your resident advisor and/or residence director and University Health Services Mānoa (808-956-8965 or uhsm.covid@hawaii.edu) immediately and self-isolate.

Are there quarantine procedures if a student housing resident contracts COVID-19?

Student housing will assist you in moving to an off-site location, probably a hotel, where you can isolate and be cared for while you recover. The university will pay for any costs including meals, regular check-ins and staff support. University Health Services Mānoa will provide medical assistance, including connecting the student with a healthcare provider, if needed. You are not allowed to return to campus until cleared by University Health Services Mānoa.

Will housing residents be notified if a student or staff member in their residence hall has tested positive for COVID-19?

Positive cases reported on campus will be announced via email. Patient privacy will be balanced with the health and safety of everyone. Student housing may send out additional information, depending on the situation. Whether in student housing or not, everyone who may have come into close contact with an infected person will be contacted through the Hawaiʻi Department of Health contact tracing program. Those notified will be advised to self-isolate, monitor for symptoms, contact the UH Mānoa COVID-19 Resource Team at University Health Services Mānoa as soon as possible at (808) 956-8965 or uhsm.covid@hawaii.edu. They may also be advised to contact their health provider and/or get tested for COVID-19, depending on the situation.

How will the university address high-touch common areas in student housing?

Common areas and high-touch areas such as elevators and doorknobs will be cleaned and sanitized daily by custodial staff. Some common areas may be closed or have limited access to ensure safe physical distancing and regular cleaning and disinfection. Elevator occupancy may be limited due to social distancing concerns.

Did first-time students receive priority for student housing?

Due to physical distancing, student housing capacity has been reduced by more than 30 percent. Priority was given to non-Oʻahu freshmen, exempted groups (athletics, special needs, residential learning programs), neighbor island students and other renewals.

Why was housing priority only given to specific students?

Due to physical distancing, student housing capacity was reduced by more than 30 percent, which led to difficult decisions. The top priority was given to non-Oʻahu based freshmen because the first year of college is a critical time of transition from home to college life. Residential community support is crucial for freshmen and can determine whether a student continues with their education and ultimately graduates. After freshmen, exempted groups (athletics, special needs, residential learning programs) and neighbor-island renewals were given the next highest priority. It was determined by campus leadership that this was the best and fairest process given the current circumstances.

Will I have the same room assignment for the entire 2020–21 school year?

Room assignments and types are for the fall semester only due to COVID-19 requirements and may change for the spring semester.

If I didn’t get housing in fall 2020 will I be eligible in the spring?

The assignment priorities for Student Housing Services are temporary in response to COVID-19 and specific for the fall 2020. Student Housing Services will need to assess the health of our community before determining spring 2021 assignment priorities.

What protocols are in place for students living in the residence halls and apartments?

Students residents are required to:

  1. use LumiSight UH, the daily health check-in app and receive an all clear before leaving their rooms at the start of the day;
  2. wear face coverings whenever on campus, indoors and outdoors, including in the student housing areas; and
  3. self-isolate and notify their resident advisor and/or residence director and University Health Services Mānoa (808-956-8965 or uhsm.covid@hawaii.edu) if they are experiencing symptoms and/or test positive for COVID-19.

Can I invite visitors to my residence hall?

Due to the special concerns related to the COVID situation, Student Housing Services (SHS) will maintain a NO GUEST policy. This means that residents cannot host anyone except for other residents who live within the same building/community. Visitation and socialization between residents within the same building/community will be permitted provided residents abide by all special health and safety policies such as, but not limited to, face coverings, social distancing, and cleaning.

What is required of neighbor island students?

Students arriving from neighboring islands will be required to submit an online travel and health form within 24 hours of flight departure. The form includes health and contact information needed to trace close contacts should a passenger become ill. The neighbor island travel quarantine does not apply to travelers arriving to Oʻahu.


Dining Services

What dining services will be available?

All Mānoa Dining Services locations, including both resident dining halls, along with Paradise Palms and some food trucks will be available for the fall 2020 semester.

Dining locations include Gateway Care and Hale Aloha dining halls, the Market @ Noelani Apartments, Starbucks, Jamba Juice, Simply to Go, Campus Center Food Court, Stir Fresh, Pizza Hut and Ba-Le. More information on Manoa Dining Services.

For more information about food service at Paradise Palms and all food trucks on campus, visit UH Mānoa Food Services.


Student Services

Will the Campus Center/ UH Bookstore be open?

The Campus Center and UH Bookstore will be open with dining and food services modified as seating will be limited and self-serve drink stations will no longer be available. Steps have been taken to limit face-to-face contact or exchanges and to minimize pedestrian traffic congestion including signage, tape, etc. to keep 6-foot spacing for people in line to maintain appropriate distance. Other student services may be done virtually or by appointment.

Go to the Campus Center and UH Bookstore websites for hours and information. Online purchasing is encouraged at the bookstore.

Walk-ins will be accepted, but the number of customers in the bookstore will be limited due to physical distancing requirements. Please be prepared to wait outside, if needed. Shopping will be limited to 15 minutes per customer, so please come prepared with a list of items needed. Counter-service will be provided for textbook servicing.

What safety procedures will be in place for people to use the Campus Center?

Before coming to Campus Center, students, employees and campus visitors are required to follow all required UH COVID-19 guidelines including use of the daily health check-in app, mandatory face covering on campus, practicing safe physical distancing whenever possible and washing hands regularly.

To adhere to 6-foot, safe physical distancing, Campus Center reduced the available public and dining room seating. Signage is posted to keep 6-foot spacing for people in line at food services.

Campus Center services are now online and will be done virtually or by appointment, wherever possible, to limit face-to-face contact or exchanges.

Will the campus shuttle be running?

Campus shuttle will not be running in the fall 2020 semester. Students can utilize the city bus system via the UPass included in student fees.

Are remote resources being offered by Student Recreation Services?

There are no plans for remote recreational services. The Warrior Recreation Center will follow state and county guidelines regarding gyms.

Will counselors be available on-campus if I feel I need to talk to someone?

Yes, mental health specialists will be available through the UH Mānoa Counseling and Student Development Center (CSDC).

Services include crisis assessment, counseling and management; brief time-limited telemental health sessions; structured skills-based groups; referrals to campus and community resources, and an array of mental health promotion, prevention and workshop/training activities. Information on mental health support available for fall 2020 is also available on the CSDC website.

CSDC is open Monday through Friday, 8:30 a.m.–4:30 p.m., and students are asked to call (808) 956-7927 before coming to the center to help follow safe physical distancing and so that staff can arrange the appropriate services. Availability of services may be impacted by Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, state, county and university guidelines, which can change abruptly depending on the status of the pandemic.

Will I be able to use the Warrior Recreation Center?

The Warrior Recreation Center will follow state and county guidelines regarding gyms and fitness centers. The WRC will be closed, beginning Thursday, August 27th, to comply with Honolulu Mayor Kirk Caldwell and Governor David Ige’s stay-at-home / work-from-home order. The center will reopen once the order is lifted. The latest information and updates can be found on the center’s Instagram page. An Instagram account is not needed to view the page.

Can students travel home (out-of-state) for Thanksgiving?

Yes, however they are subject to any potential quarantine travel rules the state may have in place at that time.

Is UH considering ending the fall semester early after the Thanksgiving break or possibly going all-online at that time?

As of the start of 2020–2021 academic year, the last day of instruction for the fall 2020 semester is December 10. The university will continue to monitor the pandemic and make adjustments as needed for the health and wellbeing of its students and employees.

Will I be able to get a campus job?

Yes, students will be able to get campus jobs. Everyone on campus must adhere to the UH COVID-19 mandatory requirements and guidelines including use of the daily health check-in app, mandatory face covering on campus, practicing safe physical distancing whenever possible and washing hands regularly. Student employees must complete the online UH COVID-19 safety training program.

How will I get to know other students in my first semester at UH?

The university will continue to offer first-year programs to help students build community. Programs such as Access to College Excellence (ACE); College Opportunities Program (COP); Hawaiʻi Undergraduate Initiative (HUI); and Mānoa Access Initiative (MAI) are designed to help first-year students develop academic and social relationships.


Space Planning

Can I sit with my friends/classmates on campus?

Unnecessary risk should be avoided as health experts say that you are more likely to catch COVID-19 if you are in close contact with someone, less than 6 feet away, for 15 minutes or more, even if everyone is wearing masks. Everyone is asked to practice safe physical distancing and stay at least 6 feet away from others wherever possible. Groups of larger than 10 are not allowed, and everyone is required to wear face coverings while on campus.

What if I need to study in a group?

Please maintain safe physical distancing, whenever possible. Students should consider meeting virtually instead of in-person.

What if we have group work in a classroom? Do we still sit 6 feet apart?

Yes. Maintain the 6 feet of physical distancing, wherever possible and always wear your face covering. Unnecessary risk should be avoided as health experts say that you are more likely to catch COVID-19 if you are in close contact with someone, less than 6 feet away, for 15 minutes or more, even if everyone is wearing masks.

I am required to take a class that only meets in person and I have underlying health issues. What accommodations can I get?

Please speak with your professor regarding any accommodations you may need. You can also speak with your academic advisor. If the first two options do not work, email COVID19@hawaii.edu for further assistance.

I need to use equipment/a room that is closed. Who do I contact?

Do not enter rooms until they are officially opened. Please contact your professor/advisor regarding equipment or spaces that you need and plan ahead, whenever possible.

Who do I contact if a room/space isn’t being cleaned?

Please let your professor know, and they can contact the appropriate facilities staff member. You can also email COVID19@hawaii.edu and please include the name of the building, room number,date and time.

Who do I contact if the hand sanitizer dispenser is empty?

There should be signage on the dispenser that has the contact to call or email. If there is no information, please reach out to the unit where that dispenser is located. You can also email COVID19@hawaii.edu and please include the name of the building, room number, date and time.

Can I enter a room while it is being cleaned?

Please do not enter rooms until staff are finished cleaning and disinfecting.

Can I use my own cleaning supplies to wipe off equipment before using it?

Yes, as long as they are non-toxic and do not pose a hazard to yourself or others. Only cleaning and disinfection products approved by the Environmental Protection Agency and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention for use against COVID-19 are allowed.

What do I do if I see someone not wearing a mask or wearing it improperly?

Please do not confront another person. If you are uncomfortable, move away if possible. The individual may have a medical condition or disability that requires them to refrain from using a mask.

Where did these guidelines come from?

These guidelines are based on guidance provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Hawaiʻi State Department of Health; state and county COVID-19 orders, and input from the UH Mānoa COVID Health Committee. They will be updated if/when the situation regarding COVID-19 changes.

Can I get a refund for my parking pass since all my classes have been moved online?

Yes. Contact Commuter Services for more information.

Will there be events on campus in the fall semester?

Most, if not all, in-person campus events will be canceled to adhere to the UH Mānoa campus and UH System guidelines including safe physical distancing that limit the attendance at public gatherings. Where possible, events will be held virtually.

Will there be athletic events on campus in the fall semester?

All UH athletic events for fall sports, except for football, have been postponed through the end of the calendar year. That includes conference-sponsored fall sports—women’s cross country, women’s soccer and women’s volleyball—and fall competitive schedules for men’s and women’s golf, men’s and women’s tennis.

The decision has not impacted the Big West winter sports of men’s and women’s basketball. Any updates and announcements will be made on UHNews.org and the UH Mānoa Athletics website.

Will there be a fall 2020 commencement?

Currently, there are plans for a commencement ceremony in December, but this is subject to change depending on the pandemic. For more updates see manoa.hawaii.edu/commencement/

What is the status of study-abroad programs?

UH Mānoa Study Abroad fall 2020 programs have delayed start dates, moved to online instruction, and accepted students who do not feel safe traveling have deferred to spring 2021. All UH Mānoa International Exchangeprograms have been canceled for fall 2020. Students should check with the UH Mānoa International Exchangeoffice and the UH Mānoa Study Abroad office for more information.

What financial support and resources are available to students amid the COVID-19 pandemic?

There are a number of resources available. Check with the UH Manoa Financial Aid Office or email finaid@hawaii.edu. Additional resources can be found at the UH System Financial Aid Office.

Are there any personal travel restrictions students should be aware of?

The university does not restrict the travel of students. Everyone is expected to adhere to any Honolulu City and County, state and federal travel restrictions that may change abruptly depending on the status of the pandemic.

Is there a guide for freshmen to help them decide what classes to take?

Students are encouraged to work with a student advisor through their academic career. The Bachelor Degree Program Sheets and Sample Four Year Academic Plans website provides requirements for all majors offered at UHM (program sheets). This website also includes sample 4-year plans with semester-by-semester course schedules to graduation. Students can also select the “What if Journey” tab in STAR GPS registration to see requirements and sample semester course schedules for each major.

Are freshmen given parking? How do we apply for parking? Where do we get a parking/carpool pass?

Parking on campus is usually limited but more parking may be available because of the COVID-19 pandemic. Parking passes are normally reserved based on class standing, starting with continuing students. For more information on parking and to purchase a parking pass, go the UH Mānoa Commuter Services.

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