Departure, Winter Break, and Travel Information - W&L Students

To: W&L Students
From: Sidney Evans, Vice President for Student Affairs and Dean of Students
Date: Friday, November 13

As we approach the end of Fall Term, I want to congratulate you on the successful completion of the term, and thank you all for your commitment to our entire community over the past several months. I know this has not been easy, but thanks to a concerted effort on the part of our students, faculty and staff alike, we made it!

I also want to make you aware of a few final details around pre-departure testing, Daily Attestations and shuttle services, as well as provide reminders about Student Health Center and University Counseling Center schedules, preparing off-campus residences, travel and inclement weather during the winter months.

Pre-Departure COVID-19 Testing

All spots have been filled for W&L's pre-departure testing. However, VMI and VDH are hosting two free drive-through COVID-19 testing clinics in the Marshall Hall parking lot on VMI post on Monday, Nov. 16 from 7 - 11 a.m. and Thursday, Nov. 19 from 2 - 6 p.m. Pre-registration is highly encouraged and can be completed at https://www.doineedacovid19test.com. Participants need to be at least 17 years old and do not need to be symptomatic to be tested. Results will be provided in an online portal, typically within 3-5 days. Visitors should access VMI post via Letcher Ave. and follow signage to the testing site.

Daily Attestation

Once you leave campus for the break, you will no longer need to complete the Daily Attestation. Information about the Daily Attestation for next term will be communicated in December.

University Shuttle Service to Regional Airports

The W&L Traveller program offers shuttle service for W&L students to/from the Roanoke Airport and the East Falls Church Transit Center in Arlington, VA., with easy connections to Washington, D.C. and Baltimore area airports. End of Fall Term shuttle drop-off dates and other transportation information are available on the Transportation Services website. You can select 7 a.m. or 12 p.m. departure times from either Lee Chapel or E. Denny Garage. If you have questions, please contact Laura Campbell.

Student Health Center and University Counseling Center Schedules

The Student Health Center (SHC) and the University Counseling Center (UCC) will close at 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Nov. 24 for the winter break. Both offices will reopen for clinical services at 9 a.m. on Monday, Jan. 11, 2021. After-hours/overnight services at the Student Health Center will resume on January 12, 2021.

If you have a non-urgent question or request over the winter break, you may e-mail studenthealth@wlu.edu (SHC) or counseling@wlu.edu (UCC) or leave a voicemail message at 540-458-8401 (SHC) or 540-458-8590 (UCC). Messages will be checked periodically over the break, but not daily, and responses may be delayed until the offices reopen in January.

  • If you have need of emergency medical assistance when the SHC is closed, please call 911, go to the Carilion-Rockbridge Community Hospital Emergency Department located at One Health Circle in Lexington, or call the hospital switchboard at 540-458-3300.
  • For urgent care/non-emergency medical assistance, go to Carilion-VelocityCare urgent care center at 110 Houston St in Lexington, Monday-Saturday 8 a.m. - 8 p.m., Sunday 10 a.m. - 6 p.m. Their phone number is 540-462-3950.
  • For mental health emergencies, call 911, go to the local hospital Emergency Department, or call the RACS Crisis Hotline at 855-222-2046.

Public Safety (540-458-8999) may be able to assist if you have questions about how to access any of these support services when the SHC and UCC are closed.

Winter Travel

As we approach winter, weather and road conditions can become a concern, especially during travel to and from homes and holiday destinations.

  • If your holiday plans include automobile travel, please use extra caution at this time of year.
  • Before you start your return drive, please check the weather in your area. Road conditions in and around Lexington are available at wlu.edu.
  • If you are planning to travel outside the U.S., please visit the CDC Travel Health Notices website at cdc.gov/travel/notices before your trip to review any applicable travel warnings or alerts.

Preparing Off-Campus Residences

If you live off campus, please consider these tips and recommendations as you prepare to leave for winter break:

  • Lock all doors and windows.
  • Remove your spare key (if you normally leave one outside/hidden).
  • Consider taking important valuables with you.
  • Inventory/document valuable items that you do not take with you.
  • Don't turn off your heat. You may want to turn it down (check your lease as sometimes this is specified) but not off, as this can put you at risk for frozen pipes and subsequent damage.
  • Unplug computers, TVs, appliances, chargers, etc. Many items use power even when turned off.
  • If leaving your vehicle, make sure it is parked legally. Note that street parking is not always permitted for extended periods of time, especially if snow needs to be cleared.

Inclement Weather at W&L

In case of inclement winter weather, assume that the university will remain open on schedule unless there is an official closure announcement. The university announces closures due to inclement weather via:

  • General Alerts text messages and email
  • LiveSafe App
  • Posting on the university's main website (wlu.edu)

Note that the university might operate on schedule even when area schools and businesses are closed or delayed. Always check your text messages, email, LiveSafe and/or the W&L website for the latest update or to verify any TV/radio cancellation announcements, as public media announcements may not post the most up to date information.

In remaining open, the university does not advise anyone to travel who feels that he or she cannot do so safely. Commuting students should exercise their best personal judgment with regard to their own local road conditions and other safety concerns. Please communicate directly with your faculty if you are unable to safely get to campus.

More information about the university's delay and closing policy and official notifications can be found at inclementweather.wlu.edu.

Thank you all again for your contributions to a successful term. I hope you all enjoy the break and I look forward to seeing you again in January!